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  •  » DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

#1 2006-09-29 17:13:02

trinifry
Member
From: Toronto, Canada
Registered: 2005-06-20
User Number: 289
Posts: 145

DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

Well it's finally COMPLETE!!! 
I have successfully retro-fitted my Subaru key and remote into the VW switchblade type remote.
This has been a long time mod that i've always wanted to do since the VW switchblade is simply a COOL! style and it definitely makes the form factor much smaller than the regular separate remote and key.

I was thinking about integrating the key and remote together like most ppl have done but still didn't like the size and comfort of the end result.

See instructions below for this modification.

Required Items:
-  2 button Subaru teardrop remote (05+ imprezas and foresters)
-  VW switchblade style remote
-  Spare key for the car.

Helpful Tools:
-  Soldering iron (w/ fine tip)
-  Thin cooper wire suitable for PCB circuits.
-  Hot-melt glue gun (or alternative adhesive)
-  Volt meter (optional to test soldered connections)
-  Dremel


--------------------------------[Key Modification]--------------------------------

1.  Remove VW key blade.  Press key release button and hold key partially flipped.  Notice the hole for the key blade retaining.  Use a thin screwdriver (or similar) to push out the retaining pin (Do not lose pin as it will be needed for the Subaru key).
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6555_r.jpg

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6556_r.jpg


2.  Trace shape of insertion tab of the VW key blade onto spare Subaru key.
Cut key and test the fit in the VW remote.  You will notice that the insertion tab on the VW key blade is slightly thinner than the rest of the key blade.  You do not have to worry about this difference in thickness as the Subaru key is the same thickness as the tab itself.  Therefore it should fit without problems after the tab shape has been accurately cut.
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6557_r.jpg

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6559_r.jpg


3.  The retaining pin channel needs to be created on the Subaru key.  To do this it may be easier to mark the hole locations while the key sits within the blade slot on the VW remote.  I dipped a tool pick in paint to mark these hole locations.  Once these locations have been marked, carefully drill a straight channel.  It is probably best to make small adjustments and look through the retaining pin hole so check fit and to determine where further drilling maybe needed.
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6560_r.jpg


4.  Insert modded Subaru key in VW remote and secure with retaining pin.  Ensure a snug fit.
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6565_r.jpg



--------------------------------[Circuit Modification]--------------------------------

1.  Configure car security system to accept new Subaru teardrop remote
(See owners manual for instructions)


2.  Remove VW and subaru remote circuits from their casings
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6547_vw.jpg

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/Subaru_T_r.jpg


3.  Using the VW circuit as a template, mark and cut away parts of the Subaru circuit as illustrated below.  The newly cut circuit board should fit within the walls of the VW casing.  Also, drill board securing holes in circuit and check fit.
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/Subaru_VW_overlay_r.jpg

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/Subaru_VW_mask_r.jpg

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/Subaru_cut_r.jpg

The cut out portions are regions of the circuitry that were allocated for the trunk release and panic buttons used on the Legacy and Outback remotes.
Here is a pick of the regions that were cut out and the circuit paths that are safe to sever.
The red cuts refer to unused paths on the 2 button remote and the blue cuts refer to the broken antenna connection that needs to be replaced.

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/Subaru_T_cuts.jpg


4.  Desolder unlock/lock buttons from VW remote circuit to be reused on the modified Subaru circuit.  (Be sure not to damage buttons)
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6563_VW_button_r.jpg


5.  Desolder unlock/lock buttons from Subaru circuit. (Be sure not to damage button contact points on the circuit board)
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/Subaru_cut_no_buttons_r.jpg


6.  Relocated the lock and unlock buttons using the VW buttons.  Approximate new button locations on the circuit and glue down buttons.  Reassemble VW casing to test physical button operation.  You may need to make slight adjustments to achieve desired button operation.
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/Subaru_VW_buttons_r.jpg


7.  Once satisfied with button placement, mark these locations and remote buttons for soldering.  Run and solder wire from the buttons to the original Subaru button contact points.  I found it easier to solder the wire to the buttons first then gluing buttons to the circuit and lastly soldering the wires to the circuit contact points.
The following image shows the wiring schematic.
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/Subaru_VW_buttons_wires_r.jpg


8.  Attach wire replacement antenna onto circuit board at the following shown locations.
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/Subaru_VW_buttons_antenna_r.jpg


This was the end product of the wired circuit
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6563_r.jpg

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6564_r.jpg


9.  Modify battery contact.  Desolder and reuse original VW battery contact.  Glue VW battery contact to new modified circuit board and attach VW battery contact to original Subaru battery contact points via soldered wire.
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6564_battery_contact_mask_r.jpg


10.  Reassemble VW casing and verify button functionality.
A tip from Soze.  Be sure to clean all the contacts before reassembling.


Final step.  REPLACE THE VW LOGO!  tongue
You can purchase a perfectly fitting logo (in the form of a pin) from the following company
http://us.saabexpressions.com/Products/ … ItemId=111
Simply cut off the pin part and replace the VW logo with your new saab logo.
Best of all, it only costs $2.50.

And thanks to curiousG, we now have the end result
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_0352_r.jpg

Comparisons between the original Saab/Subaru remote  and the newly modified switchblade key.
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6544_r.jpg

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6546_r.jpg



Enjoy  embeer


btw, this was my first attempt at tackling this with the older style remote
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6568_r.jpg
Funny thing is, it still works   lol

Last edited by trinifry (2008-07-01 02:09:02)


'05 Deep Blue saab92x Aero 5MT Canadian Package
Mods: | Kartboy SS & Bushings | Prodrive Springs | Prodrive (Round Tip) Muffler | Whiteline 20-24 RSB & HD Endlinks | Formula1 Ceramic Tint 35% | saab Thule Rack | saab Hood Deflector | Fully Functional VW Switchblade Remote Retrofit |

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#2 2006-09-29 17:19:53

salaki
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Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

VERY NICE!!!!!  up

I raise my hat to this mod!


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#3 2006-09-29 17:20:49

trinifry
Member
From: Toronto, Canada
Registered: 2005-06-20
User Number: 289
Posts: 145

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

salaki wrote:

VERY NICE!!!!!  up

I raise my hat to this mod!

haha..  Thanks!  embeer


'05 Deep Blue saab92x Aero 5MT Canadian Package
Mods: | Kartboy SS & Bushings | Prodrive Springs | Prodrive (Round Tip) Muffler | Whiteline 20-24 RSB & HD Endlinks | Formula1 Ceramic Tint 35% | saab Thule Rack | saab Hood Deflector | Fully Functional VW Switchblade Remote Retrofit |

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#4 2006-09-29 17:30:04

Justin80
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From: Kenilworth, IL
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Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

Nice!  smile

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#5 2006-09-29 17:35:01

trinifry
Member
From: Toronto, Canada
Registered: 2005-06-20
User Number: 289
Posts: 145

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

Hopefully someone will be able to reproduce this mod with the help of this DIY.
Please let me know if anyone would like me to modify the instructions so its clearer.


'05 Deep Blue saab92x Aero 5MT Canadian Package
Mods: | Kartboy SS & Bushings | Prodrive Springs | Prodrive (Round Tip) Muffler | Whiteline 20-24 RSB & HD Endlinks | Formula1 Ceramic Tint 35% | saab Thule Rack | saab Hood Deflector | Fully Functional VW Switchblade Remote Retrofit |

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#6 2006-09-29 17:38:59

Abester
"Silently judging you"
From: Hoodbridge
Registered: 2005-07-20
User Number: 576
Posts: 2172

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

Excellent write up, thank you!


Gone: 2005 Midnight Black 9-2X Aero
Now: Sedona Red 2001 Subaru Impreza RS GC8
Other: 1991 Nissan Sentra SE-R

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#7 2006-09-29 17:39:30

Azrael
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Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

I'm curious as to what the circuitry to the left of where you said to cut does. ( where it says TP7, TP5...)  I'm guessing you didn't have any problems running your own with out that section in place, right?

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#8 2006-09-29 17:45:14

trinifry
Member
From: Toronto, Canada
Registered: 2005-06-20
User Number: 289
Posts: 145

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

Azrael wrote:

I'm curious as to what the circuitry to the left of where you said to cut does. ( where it says TP7, TP5...)  I'm guessing you didn't have any problems running your own with out that section in place, right?

That section of the circuit is used for the remotes which have the trunk release and panic buttons.
Similar to the one shown on this website.
http://www.cars101.com/subaru/keyless.html#05%20legacy

I tested the paths in this area and they all seem unused.

Last edited by trinifry (2006-10-04 14:19:56)


'05 Deep Blue saab92x Aero 5MT Canadian Package
Mods: | Kartboy SS & Bushings | Prodrive Springs | Prodrive (Round Tip) Muffler | Whiteline 20-24 RSB & HD Endlinks | Formula1 Ceramic Tint 35% | saab Thule Rack | saab Hood Deflector | Fully Functional VW Switchblade Remote Retrofit |

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#9 2006-09-29 17:50:06

AbACUZ
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Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

eek eek eek

http://www.hamaraforums.com/style_emoticons/default/bow.gifhttp://www.hamaraforums.com/style_emoticons/default/bow.gifhttp://www.hamaraforums.com/style_emoticons/default/bow.gif

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#10 2006-09-29 18:13:35

scottgf
Former, Ex Dealer Guy
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Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

AbACUZ wrote:

eek eek eek

http://www.hamaraforums.com/style_emoticons/default/bow.gifhttp://www.hamaraforums.com/style_emoticons/default/bow.gifhttp://www.hamaraforums.com/style_emoticons/default/bow.gif

arrow-up arrow-up

What he said...


note to self.....do not even think you are anywhere close to be being able to pull this mod off.


Scott
05 9-2x Aero 5 Spd AP Stage 2 SOLD 10/2012     94 Dodge Viper RT/10
73 Plymouth Road Runner                                  63 VW
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#11 2006-09-29 18:22:49

D-rock
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Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

trinifry - awesome write up.  embeer  Doesn't seem too bad if you have a decent soldering iron with a fine tip. I might have to try this out sometime!


Silver Aero, 5spd, cold package

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#12 2006-09-29 18:25:49

trinifry
Member
From: Toronto, Canada
Registered: 2005-06-20
User Number: 289
Posts: 145

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

D-rock wrote:

trinifry - awesome write up.  embeer  Doesn't seem too bad if you have a decent soldering iron with a fine tip. I might have to try this out sometime!

Thanks D-rock.

Thats true, most of stuff is not that difficult.
A fine tip soldering tip will help a lot!  Thanks, i'll make that change to the DIY


'05 Deep Blue saab92x Aero 5MT Canadian Package
Mods: | Kartboy SS & Bushings | Prodrive Springs | Prodrive (Round Tip) Muffler | Whiteline 20-24 RSB & HD Endlinks | Formula1 Ceramic Tint 35% | saab Thule Rack | saab Hood Deflector | Fully Functional VW Switchblade Remote Retrofit |

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#13 2006-09-29 18:56:22

Snow Thrower
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Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

eek


2005 92x Aero *Sold*
2010 Ford F-150
2008 Mazda 6i

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#14 2006-09-29 19:40:17

eurospek
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From: Hampshire, IL
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Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

http://www.euroteknik.com/forum/images/smilies/bowdown.gif @ keyfob


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#15 2006-09-30 00:50:33

loburon
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From: Chicago
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Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

Very nice write-up!  up I feel smarter just having read it.  smile


Drink deeply from the cup of knowledge.

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#16 2006-09-30 01:22:28

snipboy
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Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

I will never do this, but total props.  roxor


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|  Eibach  |  Bell  |  Continental  |  Hella  |  Homelink  |  Inalfa  |  Injen  |  Jazzy Pro  |  Perrin  |  Prosport  |  STi  |  SubieGal |

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#17 2006-09-30 14:28:59

trinifry
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From: Toronto, Canada
Registered: 2005-06-20
User Number: 289
Posts: 145

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

Updated the DIY a bit.
I put a brief explanation describing why cutting portions of the circuit does not affect the functionality of the remote.


'05 Deep Blue saab92x Aero 5MT Canadian Package
Mods: | Kartboy SS & Bushings | Prodrive Springs | Prodrive (Round Tip) Muffler | Whiteline 20-24 RSB & HD Endlinks | Formula1 Ceramic Tint 35% | saab Thule Rack | saab Hood Deflector | Fully Functional VW Switchblade Remote Retrofit |

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#18 2006-10-04 12:47:18

single_trac
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From: Vermont
Registered: 2005-07-18
User Number: 560
Posts: 212

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

This is great stuff! Thanks for taking the time to do this, and then write it up for those of us without the brains or balls to try this first :-)

I'm still not 100% clear on how you went about doing the battery contact swap from the VW board to the subie one, but maybe it'll be more clear if I actaully purchase the parts to try it myself...

--Bill


05 9-2x Aero. 5MT, Sport & Cold
nope-this-ain't-World-Rally-Blue

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#19 2006-10-04 14:15:56

trinifry
Member
From: Toronto, Canada
Registered: 2005-06-20
User Number: 289
Posts: 145

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

single_trac wrote:

This is great stuff! Thanks for taking the time to do this, and then write it up for those of us without the brains or balls to try this first :-)

I'm still not 100% clear on how you went about doing the battery contact swap from the VW board to the subie one, but maybe it'll be more clear if I actaully purchase the parts to try it myself...

--Bill

Thanks Bill!

Basically after the subaru circuit is cut, the main spring contact ( negative terminal) on cut remote contacts the battery on the VW remote casing without any problems.  However the the positive contact spring on the VW casing is not positioned correctly to make contact with the contact points on the cut Subaru remote.  By using the old contact from the VW board (you can using anything you want as an alternative contact), i basically extended the contacts on the Subaru board to meet up with the spring contact on the VW remote casing.  As a result, the old VW contact from the VW board now meets with the spring contact on the VW casing.

Here is a pic that may help you understand.
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y146/trinifry/Key%20Fob%20Mod/IMG_6564_r.jpg

From this image, you may notice that if you were to fold the halves together, a proper connection will not be possible without extending the contact region on the Subaru board.

Also, to install the old VW contact spring on the Subaru board, i hot-melt glued it down and soldered a wire connecting the contact spring and the closest contact patch on the cut Subaru board.


Hope this helps!

Jeff

Last edited by trinifry (2006-10-04 14:18:59)


'05 Deep Blue saab92x Aero 5MT Canadian Package
Mods: | Kartboy SS & Bushings | Prodrive Springs | Prodrive (Round Tip) Muffler | Whiteline 20-24 RSB & HD Endlinks | Formula1 Ceramic Tint 35% | saab Thule Rack | saab Hood Deflector | Fully Functional VW Switchblade Remote Retrofit |

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#20 2007-04-15 23:34:45

Soze
Member
From: Dearborn, MI
Registered: 2005-07-19
User Number: 565
Posts: 12

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

Thanks for the thorough DIY,   embeer  I just did it myself and got it right the first time! 

I put the VW contact spring a little lower and soldered it directly to the solder square on the Subaru board.  The contact spring lined right up with the VW contacts on the other half.  There's probably variation depending on exactly where you put the main mounting holes on the board.

Never could have come up with a mod like this, kudos to you, sir!  roxor

Soze

Last edited by Soze (2008-06-10 00:06:46)


2005 Satin Grey Metallic Linear SOLD/ Alpine w/infinity / Aero rear sway / strut tower bars / roof rails / Yak rak / Fumoto / trinifry flipkey
2008 Civic Coupe EX Galaxy Gray Metallic / Si Wheels / summer tires / Si suspension / BadBoy air horn / Fumoto / 40mpg!
2005 Magnesium Gray Metallic Honda Element EX / Yak Rack / Home Depot gutter guard lower grill

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#21 2007-04-16 01:47:42

Methodman
Holy crip, he's a crapple.
From: Wanaque, NJ
Registered: 2005-06-22
User Number: 317
Posts: 995

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

So, how much are you going to charge for us lazy/electrical impaired people???

big_smile

In all seriousness, my wife has just one key with all the stuff built in, and I think its great! I would love something like this!! Great work!  embeer embeer


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#22 2007-04-16 02:34:25

zion168
Das Panzerwagen
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From: San Diego
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Posts: 2774

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

Does the VW key fob has the logo on reverse side?

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#23 2007-04-16 10:29:06

bump909
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Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

whoa, awesome writeup!  thank you!  i still have one of my key fobs from my last VW so i might have to try this.


the vw logo can just pop off.. it's just glued on.

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#24 2007-04-16 10:53:07

trinifry
Member
From: Toronto, Canada
Registered: 2005-06-20
User Number: 289
Posts: 145

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

np!!

Glad you were able to get it completed on the first try.
Yup, there is probably tons of different ways to align the board.  I just never bothered finding out the "best" way once i figured out it was actually possible  tongue

btw, how is the range on your remote?  Mine is kinda sort compared to the original.  About 10-15 feet.  I was thinking about stripping the sheathing around the antenna wire.  Not sure if that will work though.

Anyways, enjoy the remote!!

Now there is proof that this DIY is doable hehehehe

embeer
Jeff


Soze wrote:

Thanks for the thorough DIY,   embeer  I just did it myself and got it right the first time! 

I put the VW contact spring a little lower and soldered it directly to the solder square on the Subaru board.  The contact spring lined right up with the VW contacts on the other half.  There's probably variation depending on exactly where you put the main mounting holes on the board.

Never could have come up with a mod like this, kudos to you, sir!  roxor

Soze

______________________________

2005 Satin Grey Metallic Linear / Alpine w/infinity / Aero rear sway /  front and rear strut tower bars / Subaru roof rails / Yakima rack / Fully Functional VW Switchblade Retrofit!
2005


'05 Deep Blue saab92x Aero 5MT Canadian Package
Mods: | Kartboy SS & Bushings | Prodrive Springs | Prodrive (Round Tip) Muffler | Whiteline 20-24 RSB & HD Endlinks | Formula1 Ceramic Tint 35% | saab Thule Rack | saab Hood Deflector | Fully Functional VW Switchblade Remote Retrofit |

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#25 2007-04-17 13:51:59

Soze
Member
From: Dearborn, MI
Registered: 2005-07-19
User Number: 565
Posts: 12

Re: DIY (Subaru "VW" Switchblade Key Mod w/ Functional Remote Buttons)

My flip key remote actually has better range than my original '05 Saab remote, but I had never changed the battery on the Saab, and the VW remote I got off of eBay ($20) was absolutely unused with its original battery.  I just measured my range at 60 ft, shooting from behind the car.

Soze


2005 Satin Grey Metallic Linear SOLD/ Alpine w/infinity / Aero rear sway / strut tower bars / roof rails / Yak rak / Fumoto / trinifry flipkey
2008 Civic Coupe EX Galaxy Gray Metallic / Si Wheels / summer tires / Si suspension / BadBoy air horn / Fumoto / 40mpg!
2005 Magnesium Gray Metallic Honda Element EX / Yak Rack / Home Depot gutter guard lower grill

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