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Old 02-20-2014, 03:31 PM   #1
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Kwikee Steps

My OEM kwikee step controller has bit the dust....checked with meter, power in, nothing out to motor.
I'm wondering if anyone here has simply bypassed their controller and wired in their own open/close switch for the step?
Two wires on the motor, red & yellow. When I applied 12v to the red wire and grounded the yellow wire, the steps opened. Reversing this (12v power to the yellow and grounding the red) closed the steps.
What kind of switch would I need to make this happen? I've heard of SPST, DPDT switches but to be honest, I have no idea what that means.
Can anyone here share their 12v knowledge with me?

Thanks,

Peter
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Old 02-20-2014, 04:02 PM   #2
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Try this brown to +12 black to ground
L1 to yellow
L2 to red
Use a momentary DPDT
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Old 02-20-2014, 05:48 PM   #3
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Appreciate the reply rgvtexan, but I still don't get it. Wiring is not my strong suit. I was hoping for something much more simple. Thanks though.
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Old 02-20-2014, 06:43 PM   #4
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A DPDT (double pole double throw) will have six terminals on it. You solder an "X" of wires across the 4 end terminals and extend these to the load (motor) then wire the feed or input to the center terminals. You use a momentary switch to only allow power, when it is pushed or toggled.
Ask the guy at Radio Shack for a switch, he should have many that will work.

https://www.google.com/search?q=dpdt...ml%3B550%3B353
Hope this helps!
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Old 02-20-2014, 07:06 PM   #5
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Attached is a partial from the Kwikee manual for the 888 series. May apply to yours also.
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File Type: pdf Step Testing Manual.pdf (606.2 KB, 67 views)
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Old 02-20-2014, 09:02 PM   #6
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OK, that I understand, thankyou. I have the dpdt momentary toggle switch in front of me and see the 6 terminals. As far as the 2 center terminals, if I understand you correctly each terminal gets a +12v power feed from the + side of the battery? Don't I have to have a ground wire somewhere in this? Like I said in the original post, providing power to the red wire and grounding the yellow made the steps extend. By reversing this, power to yellow and grounding the red, closed the steps. Seems the ground is needed somewhere?
Again, I apologize for my lack of wireing knowledge.
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Old 02-21-2014, 12:47 AM   #7
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Innocent bystander here....... would you not have to have some kind of limit switch, or current monitoring switch to stop operation of steps at end of travel. If you are slow releasing the spring loaded switch you install, it seems to me that damage could be done to the step mechanism as it tries to run past the stop in each direction.

This is an interesting discussion. Thanks to those above for your knowledge.
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Old 02-21-2014, 07:16 AM   #8
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Good question George and one I can't answer. I'm hoping that by using a momentary switch that once the stair tread reaches full extension and I remove my finger from the trigger, the tread will remain in place with no power running to the motor. Same with closing the step, I'm hoping it'll close and stay closed. Time will tell.
The way I see it; the controller has failed internally and the cost to replace it is not cheap, my steps are old and rusty (even though I paint them yearly). At some point I'll need to buy new stairs but I'm not there yet. Thus my attempt for a workaround.
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Old 02-21-2014, 07:35 AM   #9
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The switch diagram listed in post 2 will do the trick. Just remember that you need to release the switch when the steps fully extend or retract. The manual states that failure to remove power to the motor will burn it out. Good luck with the project..
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Old 02-21-2014, 01:35 PM   #10
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As a followup; preliminary tests show this work-around is going to work just fine. I soldered the wiring to the switch according to the recommendations offered and made temporary connections to the step motor, ground and 12v power. Lo and behold it works perfectly. I still need to plan my routing for the new wires and switch location, but that'll be easy.
I want to thank all of you for your assistance in this. I really had no idea how to do this but y'all made it understandable for me. THANK YOU!
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Old 02-21-2014, 09:31 PM   #11
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Peter

Glad you got it working, just be careful and don't hold the switch to long, or you will be replacing the motor.
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Old 02-22-2014, 07:57 AM   #12
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rgvtexan, OK will do thanks again.
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Old 02-22-2014, 11:10 AM   #13
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I've had 4 sets of Kwikee steps & all have had some safety features built in. E.g. steps retract when engine starts & door is closed; step motor stops when reaching a limit condition. You are remove those safeties with the above work-around. Just saying.
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Old 02-22-2014, 11:30 AM   #14
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Agreed, the best way would be to replace the semi smart controller. But the OP asked how to wire a switch.
Hopefully this is just a stop gap measure. Bad things happen when you step out and the step is still in.
Years a go I rebuilt a few, then they started potting them. The I since resistor would open, from overloads.
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