Introduction: Run a Printer in Your Car

About: Set a spark back to your life ... tune in!!!

You may have needed or will need, in your lifetime, to print an important document while you are away from home. You may have resorted to finding an internet cafe to print out such a document, but such places are risky in terms or privacy and confidentiality. If only you were able to power your Inkjet Printer you have at home, from your Car, and print that important document as and when needed.

Well, that's what we will be solving in this instructable. I will be showing you how to connect and power an Inkjet Printer from your Car, and all it will take is a few hours of your time in order to build the power supply. Lets get to it shall we.

List of necessary items:

  1. Plastic enclosure - 1
  2. Mini Voltmeter - 1
  3. 150W Step Up Boost Converter - 1
  4. 12v Fan - 1
  5. 10A Wires
  6. 12V Male Connector - 1
  7. 12V Female Connector - 2
  8. 10A Fuse (Optional - required if the power draw is very high) - 1
  9. Car Cigarette Lighter Connector - 1
  10. Connector matching the Printer Power Supply Output - 1
  11. Nuts and Bolts

List of necessary tools:

  1. Flat Head Screwdriver
  2. Bent Nose Pliers
  3. Wire Cutter
  4. Soldering Iron and Solder
  5. Mini Breadboard
  6. Dupont Male and Female Cables
  7. Voltmeter
  8. Heatshrink Tube

Step 1: Assembly

I screwed in the 150W Boost Converter to the base of the plastic casing. I also screwed in the mini voltmeter to the top of the casing at the opening which I carved out beforehand.

The cooling fan was screwed into the side in order to cool down the boost converter since it gets hot if a lot of current flows through it.

A 12V Female connector was secured into the side as well using the nut which it came along with.

I also inserted a wire into the casing which already had a 12V Male Connector at its other end.

Step 2: Wire Connections

The negative or BLACK wires of the Voltmeter, the Cooling Fan and the Power In connector (which is the 12 volt female connector we added earlier), should be connected to VIN- of the Boost Converter.

The positive or RED wires of the Voltmeter, the Cooling Fan and the Power In connector should be connected to VIN+ of the Boost Converter.

The negative or BLACK wire of the Power OUT wire should be connected to VOUT- of the Boost Converter.

The positive or RED wire of the Power OUT and the Yellow wire of the Voltmeter should be connected to VOUT+ of the Boost Converter.

To get a better connection, you can solder in the wires.

Make sure of the polarity when connecting the wires together.

Step 3: Hacking the Printer

Now its time to hack the printer.

I used a Canon IP2770 inkjet printer for this project.

I used a screwdriver to loosen the lock which holds the power supply in place. Don’t use too much force or you may damage the printer.

This power supply states that it outputs 24 Volts, so we need to set the boost converter to output 24 Volts.

But I came across an issue

The power supply has 3 terminals for power out, so which two outputs 24 volts?

I used a voltmeter to find out the two correct terminals, and I also used some Dupont cables and a mini breadboard to make the necessary connections.

Once I found out the correct terminals, I marked them so that I do not get them confused later.

Step 4: Printer Power Connector

I soldered in some wires to a 12 V female connector and connected that to a matching connector of the printer power supply, so that the original power supply can be easily removed as and when needed.

I also used heatshrink to insulated the connections. We dont need any unnecessary bangs.

Step 5: Adjusting the Output Voltage

The small blue potentiometer on the boost converter should be turned in order to increase the output voltage upto 24 Volts, which is the required voltage by the inkjet printer.

Afterwards I closed up the cover and got in my car.

Step 6: Plugging in the Components to the Car

I connected the Car power to the input of the Boost Converter and thereafter connected it to the input of the Inkjet Printer using the connection wire I made earlier.

Step 7: Printing

After the printer is powered up, I sent an image file to the printer to be printed.

It successfully printed the image.

Hope this project helps.