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Fitting OTRATTW Contura V/Carling in stock switch location

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Old 07-22-2012, 11:02 PM   #1
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Fitting OTRATTW Contura V/Carling in stock switch location

This is just a write up of the physical installation (not the wiring) of OTTRATTW switches in the factory switch locations to the left of the steering wheel on a second generation Tacoma. For installing switches in the center stack (below the HVAC controls), or other locations try these threads:

http://www.tacomaworld.com/forum/lig...2012-taco.html
http://www.tacomaworld.com/forum/lig...h-sources.html

For wiring how to, see some of the links at the bottom of this post.

I bought the Carling switch bodies with Contura V Laser Etched Rockers in amber with red indicator lights. The Carling switches are a tad larger than the stock switches so a little modification to your dashboard is required. Most of this install is pretty straight forward with parts of the process posted in various threads around the site. I thought I'd put in all together in one write up since the new Contura V Laser switches have become popular. The only step that is unique to this write up is where I remove a section of the dashboard near the end of the write up. But I hope you find ALL of this useful. Click on thumbnail pictures to see larger photos.

Removing the lower dash is necessary if you want to replace factory switches (or the blanks) in the top bank. This isn't necessary for the lower bank, but it may make things easier.

To remove the lower dash: First remove the driver side door sill. Pry it straight up starting at the front and working your way back. The red circles note where the clips are located:



Next remove the dead pedal. Like the door sill, it simply pulls straight off:



In the photo above you will see a black plastic "nut" on a threaded stud; you need to spin that nut off to get the kick panel off. After that plastic "nut" is off pry the kick panel straight back; towards the rear bumper:



A few things should be removed from the lower dash panel before you take it off. The hood release lever can be removed by sliding it forward to unclip it, then turned so it can be pushed back through its hole.



The tire pressure reset button can stay on the panel, but pull the wire harness off to make life easier. The lock tab for the harness is on top, here it is pulled out:



Remove the little storage compartment/fuse panel door on the left side of the panel by opening it and pulling up & out.



Once this storage compartment is off you can get your fingers up and behind any switches or switch blanks you have and push them out of the panel.

The side mirror control switch (if you have one) can also remain in the panel but again, pull the wire harness by pushing down the lock tab on top and pull. As viewed from the floor, looking straight up through the hole where the storage compartment was:



Remove the bolt in the lower left corner of the panel, it was exposed when you removed the kick panel:



Pull the trim around the emergency brake (or coin tray if you have an auto) in the lower right corner of the panel:



Just below that coin tray/emergency brake is a trim piece that has a bolt behind it. Pry the trim off from the top and remove the bolt:



The lower panel can now be pulled off. Pry around the edges, get your fingers behind it and pull straight back. But not too far, there is still a wire harness clamp that needs to be pried off with a screwdriver:



Once this lower dash panel is off you can easily remove the upper bank switches or blanks. Simple slide a flat blade screw driver up behind the blanks and pry/push them forward & out. The photo below is taken from the floor looking straight up, you can see the bottom of my blanks and one being pried out:



With all the blanks or switches out you can now see what needs to be trimmed off to make room for the Carling switch bodies. You can use a razor, a dremel, or a file. I used a file because I felt the other methods removed too much material too fast. That makes for small errors to become big mistakes in a hurry. I did not want to look at a scar on my dashboard for the next few years and kick myself for being impatient. I'm sure you don't want that either, so whatever you use....BE CAREFUL AND DELIBERATE with every move. I used a rough file, a good compromise between removing a lot of plastic while still being easy to control:



Below you will see how much plastic I removed in about 5 minutes from the leftmost edge of the leftmost hole. As you file, dremel or cut, keep the edge as straight as possible. Don't remove any plastic from the top or bottom edges of the holes; keeping those edges perfectly new and straight will keep the new switches straight when you slide them in:



Once you've got some plastic removed from both edges of a hole test fit the new switch. If the hole is still too small, remove more plastic from the side edges. Keep them straight, keep them even, and test fit often so you don't remove too much plastic and end up with a loose fitting switch. The first one takes the longest, and once you know how much plastic needs to be removed the rest will go quicker. Here's my first hole fully trimmed:



If you are going to put switches in the lower bank (the 3 holes in the lower dash panel) they will need to be trimmed as well but can be done outside the truck if you have removed it. You may even have to do some trimming if you are simply moving a factory switch from one hole to another; seems like Toyota only wanted certain switches in certain places.

My particular switches have 5 pins each. With 4 switches that's 20 wires back there and I found it VERY cramped behind the upper bank. To facilitate wiring, I went an extra step and cut off a section of plastic dashboard that is between the upper and lower banks. This also makes it a great deal easier to remove the tight fitting OTRATTW switches by pushing them from behind by hand instead of screwdriver. It may seem intimidating to cut off a section of your dashboard, but once everything is put back together you will never notice. Below is a picture taken from the floor, looking straight up at the section to cut off; it's directly above the fuse panel:



To cut this thick plastic without the mess and vibrations of a dremel, I used a disposable razor heated to the point of glowing. I suggest disposable because melted plastic will stick to the blade and is difficult to remove; throwing it away is much easier:



Use eye protection and heat resistant gloves. Heat the blade outside the of the truck. I used a mapp gas torch, but there are many other sources of heat you could use. Melted plastic will stick to the blade, and when you go to reheat the blade that plastic will light on fire. Make certain that fire is out before bringing the blade back into the cab for more cutting. Sounds obvious, but in bright daylight it is not always easy to see a flame. Below is the cutting in progress:



And finished:



These cuts will never be seen so don't worry about having straight cuts, just worry about being safe. You are playing with fire AND knives!

And finished as viewed through the upper bank switch holes:



Wiring:
This is something I have purposely not covered in this writeup. How you run your wiring depends on what you are doing, it's not universal and I have no business telling you how it should be done. What I can tell you is to use search, read the wiring diagrams in the factory service manual, post a new thread in the Lighting or Technical Chat forums and READ! And if you still don't fully understand what to do....READ MORE! Please don't blindly do what someone on the internet tells you to do with your wiring; fully understand why someone is telling you to do something. Be sure to follow diagram supplied with your switches, they are not all the same, even between different Carling switches. Some good info to get you started:
http://www.tacomaworld.com/forum/tec...et-lights.html
http://www.tacomaworld.com/forum/tec...reference.html
http://www.tacomaworld.com/forum/lig...rich91710.html
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:03 PM   #2
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And the finished project:







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Old 07-23-2012, 06:53 AM   #3
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Nice writeup! I'm actually thinking about doing the same thing except I'd do Fog Lights, Driving Lights and either Zombie or Sasquatch Lights (possibly rear lights to come later on).
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Old 07-24-2012, 06:00 PM   #4
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Sharp. Well played, sir!
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Old 07-24-2012, 07:32 PM   #5
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tango down is one of the sharper tools in the shedtango down is one of the sharper tools in the shedtango down is one of the sharper tools in the shedtango down is one of the sharper tools in the shedtango down is one of the sharper tools in the shedtango down is one of the sharper tools in the shedtango down is one of the sharper tools in the shedtango down is one of the sharper tools in the shedtango down is one of the sharper tools in the shedtango down is one of the sharper tools in the shedtango down is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
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+1 for you, i know a lot of people are going to be printing this and heading out to the driveway.

thanks for taking the time to write it up.
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Old 07-25-2012, 10:00 AM   #6
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Thanks guys. I think these will be a very popular switch given how many I've seen and how little time they've been available. Especially the novelty ones. I think someone needs to set up a group buy.

You can't help but like a switch like this:
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Old 10-19-2012, 01:52 PM   #7
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May I ask where the OTRATTW switches are made? I want to keep my 4runner as un-Chinese as possible, so if I have to buy Whelen switches to do so, so be it. But I LOVE the looks of the OTRATTW switches!
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Old 01-10-2013, 07:59 PM   #8
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OTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant future
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HedgehogOutdoors View Post
May I ask where the OTRATTW switches are made? I want to keep my 4runner as un-Chinese as possible, so if I have to buy Whelen switches to do so, so be it. But I LOVE the looks of the OTRATTW switches!
American Company but manufactured in Mexico.
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Old 01-10-2013, 08:12 PM   #9
Well, let's play chess.
DoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
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Welcome, Jim! If you're part of the OTRATTW crew, you might want to become an official TacomaWorld vendor. That may make it easier to promote your products.

BTW, the OP used a flat wood rasp to enlarge the dash openings.
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Old 01-10-2013, 09:52 PM   #10
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Awesome job, cheers
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Old 01-10-2013, 10:10 PM   #11
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OTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant futureOTRATTW has a brilliant future
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DoorDing View Post
Welcome, Jim! If you're part of the OTRATTW crew, you might want to become an official TacomaWorld vendor. That may make it easier to promote your products.

Working on it.
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Old 01-10-2013, 10:12 PM   #12
Well, let's play chess.
DoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OTRATTW View Post
Working on it.
Good to hear. When I need a switch, I know where to look.
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Old 03-22-2013, 05:42 PM   #15
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I would really like to get an OTRATTW zombie switch for an upcoming mod I have in mind, but what should I do when my dashboard looks like this:


The only thing I can think of is maybe a DPDT switch to replace my fogs?
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Old 03-22-2013, 05:48 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by opy5656 View Post
I would really like to get an OTRATTW zombie switch for an upcoming mod I have in mind, but what should I do when my dashboard looks like this:


The only thing I can think of is maybe a DPDT switch to replace my fogs?
I bought the Carling 3 switch mount and installed it in my shifter bezel
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Old 03-22-2013, 05:51 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maximus View Post
I bought the Carling 3 switch mount and installed it in my shifter bezel
I have a 6-speed manual, so I have 2 cup holders there. I was also looking into possibly down by the cig lighter area. I do have 2 blanks there, but they appear to be much smaller.
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Old 03-22-2013, 07:00 PM   #19
Well, let's play chess.
DoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shedDoorDing is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KeithB View Post
Could also use the sunglass holder overhead. Someone on here put like 6 switches up there.

Good grief! I wonder what they populated the other likely locations with.
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