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Old 11-29-2013, 07:47 AM   #1
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Front & Rear Camera Kenwood Radio Integration

Integrating a Front & Rear Camera into the Kenwood Radio-Navigation Unit (Pictures: See Attached PDF file)
AIRSTREAM Interstate EXT



We recently purchased a 2014 Interstate Ext this past fall; actually built on a 2013 Mercedes Benz Sprinter 3500 Chassis.

I’ve always had a great deal of appreciation for folks who take the time out to post “How too” topics; so with that said, this will be my first and I hope it’s helpful for anyone looking to eliminate the Pyle Rearview Camera system, while Integrating the Rear Camera, as well as a Front Camera system into the Factory Installed Kenwood Radio GPS Navigation System.
Our 2013/2014 Interstate was delivered from AIRSTREAM with a KENWOOD DNX890HD system; this system allows for two separate CMOS Cameras to be installed. This project took me approximately four hours to complete, which included a lot of exploring in finding the existing Rear Camera wiring and such; so hopefully this will help in keeping you on schedule. I should also note that I have gained a lot of experience in this type of work while in college (early nineties) installing Cellular and Two-Way Radio equipment at a local Land Mobile Radio shop. But don’t let that discourage you from taking this project on; in the end, you will have relocated the Hands-Free Microphone and cleaned up the messy wiring, reclaimed your Rear-View Mirror in order to allow you to keep an eye on the rear cabin area, as well as use the rear windows while driving, redirect the rear-view camera through the in-dash Radio GPS Navigation system, as well as adding a Front Camera as an additional parking aide.

Needed Tools and Supplies: I purchased a fairly inexpensive Camera made by Audiovox from my local Best Buy stereo shop; it cost me under $100. In addition, I picked up a roll of wiring loom; crimp type electrical terminals and some heat shrink tubing.
Tools:
· Torx Screw Driver Set (T15 to T25)
· Wire Striper / Terminal Crimp Tool
· Tie Wraps
· Wire Cutter
· Phillips Screw Driver
· Scissors
· Metric Socket Set (1/4” Drive)
· Volt Meter or Voltage Test Light
· Wiring fish ( A tool for snaking wiring through the fire-wall and or Dash Board area)
· Electrical Tape
· Heat Gun or Hair Dryer
· Electrical Connectors (Crimp Type)
· Wiring Loom
· A Female-to-Female bullet (Used in connecting the existing Rear-View Camera to the KENWOOD Radio)
· 6’ Video RCA to RCA cable (Might need it, I didn’t as I was able to use the existing rear-view camera video cable)


Planning: I recommend doing this project when the weather is warm, avoid doing this in a cold environment as the plastic trim parts can become brittle and perhaps crack when trying to remove them.
  • Refer to the Attached PDF file for STEP-by-STEP instructions and Example Pictures and Images to help you along.
· Hopefully all went well, and you are sitting back and admiring your craftsmanship. I hope this was helpful and provided some close and intimate time with your family in helping out, as well as providing some time in getting to know your AIRSTREAM better. Please excuse and ignore any spelling and grammatical errors.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf AIRSTREAM Interstate Camera.pdf (1.71 MB, 862 views)
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Old 11-29-2013, 09:25 AM   #2
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Awesome writeup! I'll have to bookmark this for future reference. Thank you and welcome to the forum!
David
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Old 11-29-2013, 09:33 AM   #3
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Excellent! I never liked the Pyle, so I may attempt this early next year. Thank you - your PDF is saved away!
Peter
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Old 11-29-2013, 04:41 PM   #4
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Welcome to the forums!

Excellent write-up. I would like some extra camera views but would like to keep the Pyle Rearview Camera system. I like having the rear view camera up all the time without having to press any buttons. But adding two "maneuvering" cameras for parking and blind spots would be great.

I see from your photos you have a battery on the Auxiliary tray in the engine compartment. Was that delivered from Airstream? Is it a Sprinter Aux battery or as an extra house/coach battery?
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Old 11-29-2013, 05:31 PM   #5
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Battery: I think our Airstream is a late 2013 Sprinter, actually it's registered as a 2014; however it does not have the new head lights and such that you see on the new 2014 Sprinter Interstates. The battery post is still located uunder the hood, just like the early 2013 models which have the battery located under the drivers foot well compartment.

Back-Up L.E.D. Lights - Future Project: I'm going to install L.E.D. (Wheelen) white lights under the rear area of the Sprinter; forward and aft of the rear wheels (four lights total). The plan is to have all four lights illuminated when in Reverse, and have the two lights on the curb side (passenger) come on when I use the patio light switch.

I might replace the AIRSTREAM OEM L.E.D. patio light with a Wheellen brand.
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Old 11-30-2013, 11:10 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scott.semone View Post
Battery: I think our Airstream is a late 2013 Sprinter, actually it's registered as a 2014; however it does not have the new head lights and such that you see on the new 2014 Sprinter Interstates. The battery post is still located uunder the hood, just like the early 2013 models which have the battery located under the drivers foot well compartment...
Thanks -- what you have looks like an auxiliary battery in engine compartment. I'd bet you also have the main battery under the driver floor.
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Old 11-30-2013, 04:07 PM   #7
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Alternative Camera Views: If you like and want to keep the Pyle Rear-View Mirror Video Screen; I was looking at the possibility of putting another camera above the Patio Light. You can access the patio light and wiring behind the Control Panel (Tank Status, Generator Start, Inverter, etc..). It's just four wood screws and the control face plate just slides to the side in order to access wiring and such.

I've been meaning to see if the battery box is in place; I could use it for emergency storage and or an extra battery.
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Old 11-30-2013, 04:28 PM   #8
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Quote:
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I might replace the AIRSTREAM OEM L.E.D. patio light with a Wheellen brand.
Source? That's a replacement that makes a lot of sense to me. The one Airstream provides is hardly bright enough to even qualify as a night-light, let alone actually illuminate the patio area.
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Old 11-30-2013, 05:33 PM   #9
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WHELEN strobes and lights; we are starting to see lots of First Responder Apparatus Vehicles equipped with the new WHELEN L.E.D. type lights. I agree with the DIM illumination of the stock AIRSTREAM lights; the WHELEN stuff is super bright and high quality.

I'll post something once I finish up the lighting project.
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Old 12-03-2013, 08:24 PM   #10
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Great write-up and pics!

Did you consider using one of the unused fuse slots along w/ the piggy-back terminals to facilitate fuse replacement?

I read in a forum someplace where the Sprinter lighting circuits don't play well w/ LEDs. Something about the diagnostic fault circuitry. Maybe the WHELEN LEDs have the proper load resistors to eliminate this problem.
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Old 12-04-2013, 06:45 AM   #11
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Great write-up and pics!

Did you consider using one of the unused fuse slots along w/ the piggy-back terminals to facilitate fuse replacement?

I read in a forum someplace where the Sprinter lighting circuits don't play well w/ LEDs. Something about the diagnostic fault circuitry. Maybe the WHELEN LEDs have the proper load resistors to eliminate this problem.
Patio light isn't on the Sprinter chassis harness, it's on the Airstream house harness. And the Airstream-original patio light is an LED light already. Problem is, it's an automotive dome light, repurposed as a patio light, and is not really meant to illuminate the an 8×12 area under an awning.

Side note, when I bought an LED replacement for my Honda Fit toad's dome light, the LED that fit the dome light was exactly the same one that's in my Interstate's patio light.
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Old 12-04-2013, 11:20 AM   #12
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My brother just told me about a wireless rear camera he uses on his trailer. That would simplify the wiring requirements.
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Old 02-16-2014, 05:20 PM   #13
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Great Writeup - small change

Scott,
Thank you for this great writeup. I just had an in-motion satellite system installed in my Interstate, and while it was at the radio shop, I asked the tech to make the alteration you documented. I gave him your step-by-step instructions. The tech did one other thing for me on his own initiative, which was to add a small switch to the left of the display. With this switch, I can "trick" the unit into thinking I'm in reverse so that I can look out the camera anytime I want. The camera comes on automatically when I go to reverse.
As for the in-motion, the shop did an awesome job with that as well. I went with a Trackvision A-7 with 2 tuners. The receivers were mounted in the cabinet over the driver's head., and an RF modulator was used to get the signal to the rear tv through the installed coax cable.
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Old 02-18-2014, 01:40 PM   #14
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I like the idea of the switch, it's a nice little touch. I found if I hold the AUX button down for a little longer than a second, this activates the camera view. You can then select the front or rear view by using the touch screen to toggle between the two views. You should see an image with two arrows pointing in opposite directions, left and right. For my unit, selecting the left side activates the Front View Camera and selecting the Right Side activates the Rear View Camera.
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