On a mobile vehicle, space is at a premium due to the limited profile of an off-road or on-road vehicle. We see these challenges every day when developing custom controls and hydraulic solutions for our customers.
Our team of engineers designs custom control panels based on your vehicle’s needs such as space and production requirements. Take a look at the highlights of the custom control panel in our overview video and see Five Reasons Why You Should Choose Cross to Build your Mobile Panel below.
- Mounted outside on the chassis of an on-road vehicle.
- A clear front panel for operator use while the door is closed.
- Shatterproof to protect the HMI from road debris during transit.
- The 7” HMI display gives the operator an interface to all machine parameters such as blower temperature, vacuum levels, and vehicle RPM.
- Robust, continuous hinge to support door sturdiness.
- Inside the panel, you will find an air manifold, CAN-based controller and display, wireless remote control receiver, and built-in diodes for a manual override on some body functions should the control system fail.
- Records engine fault codes and controls engine RPM along with controlling vehicle body functions.
- On the outside of the panel is a USB port for data logging, such as during unsafe operating conditions.
- All connections are quick disconnect, which allows for easier wiring and installation. No more wiring on the production floor!
See how our mobile systems integration team can help improve quality, increase efficiency, and reduce risk
Five Reasons Why You Should Choose Cross to Build your Mobile Panel
When designing a mobile control panel, there are a number of special considerations that make them different from an industrial panel. This is primarily because mobile panels are just that – mobile. They are exposed to the elements, subjected to heavy vibration, have unique space limitations, and are required to mate up to vehicle wire harnesses. For this reason, it is important to work with a company that has experience in building control panels specifically for on and off-road mobile applications.
Due to the nature of mobile environments, vibration is a big factor when building control panels. All the connections within the panel have to hold up to continuous movement. At Cross, we install ferrules on all wiring to terminal blocks, switches, lights, and push-buttons. Any wire end that would usually be bare stranded copper is now required to have a ferrule installed. In addition, we utilize spring terminals so as the panel vibrates the terminals do not work themselves loose.
Custom Panel Design
When building a panel for a mobile application, the typical rules don’t apply. Mobile panels tend to be more compact so they can fit into the space available on the equipment, meaning that standard panel sizes will not work. For this reason, the free space requirements of a normal industrial panel are not relevant. Additionally, when building a panel you need to consider where it will be located on the equipment, and how that affects the location of components and the need for intrusion protection. Our engineering team works directly with a custom panel shop to make sure that every panel enclosure is perfectly made for the application.
Wire harness ready
It is important that the control panel is easy to add during the assembly process. In order to make it as seamless as possible, our custom mobile control panels are built to connect easily to wire harnesses. Most if not all of the through panel connections utilize some type of quick disconnect plug (usually Deutsch style) that mate directly to the incoming wire harness. This makes connections easy and simple on the production floor while also reducing the risk of miswiring.
Rugged and hardened components
The environments that mobile equipment is exposed to is decidedly different from the areas where typical industrial panels are installed. A mobile control panel needs to have the proper NEMA rating for the type of environment that it will be in. Typically Cross mobile control panels and components have a minimum protection rating of IP67. Additionally, the mobile environment requires the use of tougher, more rugged components that can stand up in outdoor conditions. Mobile equipment also runs on lower voltage and higher currents. Many typical industrial panel shops may not even have vendors for these parts. For instance, MTW, or machine tool wire, would not be appropriate for a mobile environment. Instead, you would need automotive Crosslink Wire with GLX insulation that can handle the higher heat experienced by mobile units.
Familiarity with mobile environments and needs
Overall, when trusting someone to build a control panel for your mobile equipment, you need to make sure that they understand the unique demands of a mobile environment. The best way to ensure this is to work with a team that regularly builds panels for exactly that purpose. At Cross Mobile Systems Integration, we have the tools, and expertise to build a panel that is perfect for your application. With our years of mobile panel building experience, we will build a panel for your equipment that will stand up to the environment, fit into your space requirements, and with the proper connectivity for your vehicle harnesses. Contact us today to discuss your specific mobile application.