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theksmith

2016 JK Wrangler Simple Tablet Mount (for GPS/maps)

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A few days ago, I posted this teaser of a new tablet mount bracket in my build thread:

 

IMG_9108-1.jpg

 

Let's jump ahead to the nearly finished product:

 

IMG_9129-11.jpg

 

 

Rationale

 

Since I'm not sure if I'll ever do another complete "carputer" type setup in my new rig, I just needed a simple and possibly temporary way to mount a tablet for off-road mapping...

 

Aimee is letting me borrow her Verizon G-Pad 8.3" tablet since my larger Sony 10.1" may or may not be sold along with my WJ. Right now the G-Pad is just going to be for topo maps and not integrated with audio or anything else. The 2016 JK factory premium sound radio (430N) has decent on-road navigation and works with my phone over bluetooth for calls and streaming audio, so I'm leaving it alone (for now)!

 

With the 8.3" tablet, you only lose about a half inch of visibility on either side of the A-pillar in this location. A 7" tablet would be perfect here and not cause any view obstruction.

 

 

The Cradle

 

For the actual cradle, I reused the piece of the Satechi clamp-style mount that I customized previously for Aimee's Jeep Liberty KJ install (she's since sold that rig):

 

IMG_2316-2.jpgIMG_2331-3.jpg

 

One of the RAM Mount Tab-Tite products could be used instead of this clamp, or a ProClip custom tablet cradle.

 

 

The Bracket

 

For the actual bracket, I used a 1" x 1/4" steel bar about 10" long, welded to a small steel plate.

 

IMG_9099-4.jpg

 

This custom bracket attaches to the Jeep with a single bolt, through a 2 1/8" long stand-off, into the factory upper A-pillar bolt-hole location.

 

IMG_9123-10.jpg

 

IMG_9101-5.jpgIMG_9112-8.jpg

 

I had noticed that some of the grab handles which mount to this location call for tightening that bolt to 300 ft-lbs (EDIT: supposed to be in-lbs, doh!), so think it's a pretty solid place to mount something.

 

The Satechi cradle is attached to the bracket with 3M double-sided trim adhesive tape and a couple tiny screws.

 

 

Testing & Wrapping Up

 

It turns out there's zero flex, thanks to the 1/4" steel used for the main arm and large diameter stand-off. I was actually more worried that the plastic cradle might not hold up to extended off-road use. However, I tested by doing a few hours of high-speed travel over severe washboard roads this weekend and everything seemed extremely solid.

 

IMG_9131-12.jpg

 

I'm currently running the power into a USB charger in the factory dash outlet, so I'll need to rig up somethign more hidden if I keep this for a while.

 

As you can see from some of the photos, I've already done a textured black paint. I did actually bend the arm just a bit in a vise after these photos were taken - to bring the tablet a little closer to the dash vent. So, I'm in the process of re-painting the bracket and also waiting for a nicer looking main bolt to use. Since the local Ace only had a regular shiny hex-head bolt, I ordered a M8 x 1.25 X 70mm allen button-head bolt in black oxide finish from Bolt-Depot online.

 

 

Conclusion

 

I'm not sure if this would be a good location for on-road use. It does help keep your eyes near the road when glancing quickly at the screen. but it could also be a little distracting always in the line-of-site. For my current off-road only use, I think it will be perfect.

 

Pros:

  • Easy to make/install
  • Requires no permanent modifications to the JK
  • Not in the path of an airbag
  • Doesn't block any factory controls or screens
  • Very minor reduction in road visibility
  • Inexpensive

 

Cons:

  • May be distracting for on-road use
  • Requires welding
  • Highly visible location that could attract theft if you leave the tablet in all the time
  • Tablet not as easy to use for right-handed people (versus a mount near the radio)
  • Passenger can see but not operate the tablet for the driver

 

IMG_9174-13.jpg

 

FYI: When searching for the link to the original grab handles that inspired this location, I found another company that integrates a ball-mount onto theirs. It looks to be compatible with the RAM Mount system, so this might be a ready-made way to accomplish the same location (along with a RAM arm and cradle): http://www.carolinametalmasters.com/products/cmm-jk-billet-front-grab-handles?variant=365288329

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cool!

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An amazing job again. Thanks Kris.

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Very nice. I am using the Carolina Metal Master grab bar handle to hold my iPad.

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I had noticed that some of the grab handles which mount to this location call for tightening that bolt to 300 ft-lbs, so think it's a pretty solid place to mount something!

Kris,

I'm gonna bet that this number should read; 300 INCH-POUNDS, (or 25 FT-LB)

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Kris,

I'm gonna bet that this number should read; 300 INCH-POUNDS, (or 25 FT-LB)

 

 

as usual, there you go making sense again!

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as usual, there you go making sense again!
lol... ;)

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got my $6 black bolt (darn shipping costs)!

 

IMG_9251.JPG

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i noticed Carolina Metal Masters is now selling the ram ball mount as a stand-alone item: http://www.carolinametalmasters.com/collections/cmm-custom-products/products/ram-pillar-ball-mount

 

makes it even cheaper to grab that and a RAM Mount arm plus one of their tablet holders and have a very solid, easy mounting solution!

 

Pillar_Ram_Ball_Mount_3.jpg?v=1385345575

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