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Although this isnt to terribly difficult, i though i would post a DIY just in case people didn't realize how easy it is.

parts needed:
dash cam (I originally bought the Wide-Angle-Mobius-ActionCam-1080p-HD-Video-Camera-With-Dash-Cam-Kit-Mobius actioncam)
but now i prefer the A118C https://dashcamtalk.com/b40-a118/#Should_I_Purchase
9ft. usb wire (included in the kit i bought)
usb adapter (included in the kit i bought)
suction cup mount (included in the kit)
add-a-fuse Lot5 Car ATM Fuse Tap Add A Fuse Add A Circuit for Mini Blade Style Fuse 15AFUSE | eBay
miscelaneous wiring, solder, connectors, crimper etc.



orignally i used a USB cigarette plug adapter, but now i use a 12v to 5v convertor, they're <$3

First step was the USB cigarette plug adapter. the easy way is just to buy a female socket.


but what i did was pull my plug apart and soldered a wire to the power and ground, then taped it back up.

The power wire gets attached to the add-a-fuse. the add-a-fuse goes into fuse 87 in the passenger fuse box. the usb adapter i zap straped out of the way.


To the ground i crimped a ring terminal and put it under one of the plastic atachment posts for the vanity cover, making sure it contacts the metal well.


the long USB wire followed the door seal and kick panel, up under the A pillar, then along under the head liner along the path shown below.


finally, attached the camera mount ot the suction cup and stick to winshield. it was quite discreet from the outside.



Here is an example of the video quality of the Mobius. This is from my Ford Focus, but it has the same camera as the Escape.
crash through snow bank ice rally-x - YouTube
 

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Thank you for the write-up! I actually just ordered a dash cam earlier this week after reading some horror stories on reddit. :) Picked up the G1W-C.

One thing I want to go for is a clean install, snaking the wiring through the door seal/kick panel/pillar. Does most of that just pop off and pop back on? Any tips/tricks to doing so? I certainly do not want to break anything.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you for the write-up! I actually just ordered a dash cam earlier this week after reading some horror stories on reddit. :) Picked up the G1W-C.

One thing I want to go for is a clean install, snaking the wiring through the door seal/kick panel/pillar. Does most of that just pop off and pop back on? Any tips/tricks to doing so? I certainly do not want to break anything.
honestly i don't think i needed to pop any of it off completely. I was able to pry it up a little at the edge and jam the wire in underneath.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
the way these are set up is that they turn on when the vehicle ignition is on. when the memory card fills up, it just starts overwriting.

They are esentially fool proof. I didnt want it to have to be plugged in each time to use, or removed from the vehicle when you park due to fear of theft. I needed it to be a silent witness, that is always there.

The camera I picked is cheap enough that if someone stole it, i wouldnt be upset.

the reason i use it is that I had gotten blamed for an accident a few years ago that wasn't my fault, but the other driver lied, and there were no witnesses to corroborate my statement. so a $100 camera is cheap insurance to protect me against future fraud.

here, i remembed i've got a video of some on the road action. I almost got hit, and then witnesses an accident.
 

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the way these are set up is that they turn on when the vehicle ignition is on. when the memory card fills up, it just starts overwriting.

They are esentially fool proof. I didnt want it to have to be plugged in each time to use, or removed from the vehicle when you park due to fear of theft. I needed it to be a silent witness, that is always there.

The camera I picked is cheap enough that if someone stole it, i wouldnt be upset.

the reason i use it is that I had gotten blamed for an accident a few years ago that wasn't my fault, but the other driver lied, and there were no witnesses to corroborate my statement. so a $100 camera is cheap insurance to protect me against future fraud.

here, i remembed i've got a video of some on the road action. I almost got hit, and then witnesses an accident.
www.youtube.com/watch?v=cXLiBtECvC0
Excellent. Yes very true. I think I'm going to do this as well. I appreciate the post! How big is the storage and how long does it take to fill? Like you said I'm fine with it over writing but I'd like a day or two I suppose.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Excellent. Yes very true. I think I'm going to do this as well. I appreciate the post! How big is the storage and how long does it take to fill? Like you said I'm fine with it over writing but I'd like a day or two I suppose.
depending on the compression codec.

on mine, at 1080p i get 2 hours on a 16GB card. but thats all i need. If i were to get into an accident or need to save a video, i would just turn off the camera or remove the card so it didnt get overwrote
 

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depending on the compression codec.

on mine, at 1080p i get 2 hours on a 16GB card. but thats all i need. If i were to get into an accident or need to save a video, i would just turn off the camera or remove the card so it didnt get overwrote
Ah good point. With that camera and 1080p, can it see/read license plates when you are behind someone?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Ah good point. With that camera and 1080p, can it see/read license plates when you are behind someone?
with the Mobius you can read plates in the day time, at night there is just too much contrast between the dark surroundings and the white hot bright of the plate reflecting the headlights. however, i feel that even providing context in a collision, rather than number plate proof, would be enough.

this is a really great website that is constantly updated with new models, comparing all the dash cam.

https://dashcamtalk.com/
 

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Do you guys use these every time you drive, or accident protection? I mean I put my gopro's up for racing...and have seen the Russian videos of dash cams. I see the reasoning behind using one, but curious.
The idea behind the dash cam is for it to work at all times without you having to do anything. This is why Thenorm has configured it this way, so that it turns on and off with the engine. If you have to turn it on and off manually or plug it in each time, you'll do that for maybe a week and then quit because your drives will be uneventful, then it's pointless.

Any self-respecting dash cam begins recording automatically as soon as it receives power, so it makes sense to tie it to a fuse. If I'm not mistaken, the cigarette power outlet in the console is switched with the engine, so that's an option as well if your cable has the length.

The amount it records really depends on the size of the memory card you put in it. Most cams will continuously record in around 5-minute increments, providing you many different files. This splits it up so that if you do record something you want to keep, you only have to grab a small file instead of cutting down a multi-gigabyte file. Once the card fills up, it will begin overwriting the oldest, continuing on in a loop.

If you get a big enough card, you can typically hold hours worth of high-definition video. So, if you are in an accident, you have plenty of time to allow it to continue recording and still be able to go back and get the video you need. To go further with this, some dash cams give you the ability to hit a button on the camera, which will lock whatever 5-minute video file is currently recording. That file will then not be overwritten but allows you to continue recording on without fear of overwriting something important.

I'm getting the G1W-C dash cam, a very cheap but well regarded cam. I've read you can typically get about 6 hours of video with a 32GB card, which is enough to cover my whole week of driving back and forth to work before it starts overwriting.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
this is the reason why I have a dash cam.
My wife almost got wrecked when a van ran a stop sign.
This would have been good evidence should there be debate about the fault.

you can clearly see the van wasn't stopped as she approached.

 

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Just wanted to thank you for this walkthrough again. Just got mine installed and wired up with an add-a-fuse circuit!





I somehow took this at the right angle to show a gap between the camera and the cable-hiding piece and now it's driving me crazy... Totally not noticeable in person though, haha.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Just wanted to thank you for this walkthrough again. Just got mine installed and wired up with an add-a-fuse circuit!

I somehow took this at the right angle to show a gap between the camera and the cable-hiding piece and now it's driving me crazy... Totally not noticeable in person though, haha.
Great Job.
I like the form factor on that camera. very discreet. Personally I wouldn't have bothered with the wire cover. Its mostly hidden behind the mirror anyways.
 

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I'll preface this by saying I'm ignorant of the laws in my own state, let alone all the other states - and this comment is strictly from a "devil's advocate" point of view, but what if you're in an accident and it WAS your fault?

Are authorities able to confiscate the video and use it as evidence against you?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I'll preface this by saying I'm ignorant of the laws in my own state, let alone all the other states - and this comment is strictly from a "devil's advocate" point of view, but what if you're in an accident and it WAS your fault?

Are authorities able to confiscate the video and use it as evidence against you?
yes? I'm sure you could be compelled to submit it to the police or your insurance. However if you were at fault, you would admit as much, since you are a responsible person, and the video would be moot.

I think the general consensus on the internet is don't mention you have video, unless the claim process is not proceeding in a fair manner and you need additional proof of your innocence.
 

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Clean installs folks, nice work!

Since I'm not a fan of running any additional wires in my FE, I have this one with an internal battery. It's a bit of a pain to have to recharge every few days, but not the end of the world.
 
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