Taking Advantage of Multiplexing
At NTEA’s annual Work Truck Show in March, Guy Chollet, Engineering Manager for Auto Truck, presented at a session entitled Taking Advantage of Multiplexing, along with Bryan Howard, Vocational Sales Manager for Freightliner Trucks.
Guy Chollet provided an upfitter’s perspective on multiplexing, including an overview of multiplex wiring systems and how they can be integrated into the upfitting process. Below is some coverage from the session from Trailer Body Builders. You can read full coverage here.
Upfitters can save time, improve quality, and ultimately increase customer satisfaction by taking advantage of the multiplexed electrical systems that chassis manufacturers are making accessible to the truck equipment industry.
According to Chollet, this technology has been in the industry, our homes and appliances for years, but what’s new is the opportunity to use the processes to make our systems more efficient and reliable.
“Multiplexing significantly reduces the number of electrical components we have to install,” he said. “Connections are lessened markedly and devices reduced. As a result, we become more efficient as we’re going to make installations more quickly, more reliably, and we’re able to get more work through our facilities. There are shortened production intervals, enhancing output without increases in facilities or labor forces. Lastly, we become competitive. We need to be able to explain to our customers that they can use multiplexing.”
“Failure to understand and utilize these systems lessens the ability to compete with other potentially smaller rivals. An inability to explain and rationalize this technology detracts from the perceived knowledge and credibility of the supplier.”
Things Distributors Should Consider
Chollet offered distributors a series of things to keep in mind when integrating the power needs of truck equipment into a truck’s multiplexed electrical system:
- Will one switch operate one output? More than one?
- Will current demands exceed 7A? 20A? Are sufficient outputs available? Is another processor receiving an output, providing an input?
- Ten 7A outputs and 12 20A outputs are available.
- Are added relays, diodes or solenoids needed? Do concerns with high amperage or polarity exist? Is it a requirement to switch digital signals?
- Inputs stemming from other circuits often have to trigger a relay, crossing ground as the input.
- Less than 7A requires a fuse protection, greater than 20A may need an added relay triggered or a second output.
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