Arduino Controlled Vehicle Authentication/Startup

Good day everyone!
As I am new to Arduino, I have taken the time to read the rules, how-to's and watched a few videos in regard to programming and pin-outs via bread-boarding, but I haven't really found anything as of yet in regard to a project I would like to undertake on a 1994 Mitsubishi 3000GT VR-4.

First off, I will admit that even from the word "Go", I don't even know what model Arduino I would need for this kind of project, but I am very comfortable with soldering, as well as wiring and have a coworker who is decent at learning coding, so I think it's a feasible project with some direction and assistance.

As far as my scope of project:
My end goal is to remove the key cylinder from the steering column and replace the functions of the key with a switch for power (boot up Arduino and other car accessories), which would then provide power to an authentication device (AKA key) whether PIN pad or fingerprint reader, which then allows the Arduino to activate a relay to supply power to the Push-Button Start which will then crank the motor.

The one caveat that comes to mind is if for some reason the authentication device would fail, would there be another way to fail-over to a different device? I would assume that a simple push-button would be able to change the logic in the Arduino to point to a different input for acceptance, but I would think that a third fail safe (hidden physical switch) would also be a good idea. I also have the full electrical service manual from Mitsubishi for all of the circuits.

If I'm not mistaken, the Arduinos are 5VDC powered, so a 12VDC to 5VDC step-down would be needed as well (I assume.)

Based on the high-level scope, is the Arduino the right platform for what I'm looking to do? If so, which model would be my best starting point?

As a reference point, I was kind of looking at a fingerprint reader such as this:

https://buysnip.com/product/r306-capacitive-fingerprint-reader-modulesensorscanner-arduino/

I hope that this is an adequate start thread and look forward to discussion!
Thanks!

If your friend and the people on this forum are doing all this engineering work for you, what part are you doing?

Paul

obxboost:
and have a coworker who is decent at learning coding,

If you don't plan to do the coding yourself then I reckon it will be a lot more productive if the person who is doing the programming is the one to participate in the Forum rather than you.

Trying to give advice can be tricky. Doing it via an in-expert third party just won't work.

...R

Paul_KD7HB:
If your friend and the people on this forum are doing all this engineering work for you, what part are you doing?

Paul

I appreciate your rather helpful question. In response, I was hoping that the connections reference in regard to soldering and wiring would have answered that for you already. I had hoped that a pleasant introductory post would have avoided such responses as yours, but it’s great to know that those with mental prowess of existential knowledge look down upon novices that are also looking to learn.

Robin2:
If you don’t plan to do the coding yourself then I reckon it will be a lot more productive if the person who is doing the programming is the one to participate in the Forum rather than you.

Trying to give advice can be tricky. Doing it via an in-expert third party just won’t work.

…R

I’m not saying he’s doing all the work, and I’m glad this is the only point that is being focused upon. It’s a tandem effort. I want to learn most of it, but he already has some experience with coding logic. My first topic was whether the platform is able to perform what my goal is, then followed by which model would be the one I’d need.

I rather like following in steps with a logical progression, versus being told up front that my being up front on my limits of knowledge and what my resources I have are the limits to my potential project.

To quote the datasheet for the Atmel ATmega328 (Arduino UNO);

"Unless specifically provided otherwise, Atmel products are not suitable for, and shall not be used in, automotive
applications"

srnet:
To quote the datasheet for the Atmel ATmega328 (Arduino UNO);

"Unless specifically provided otherwise, Atmel products are not suitable for, and shall not be used in, automotive
applications"

My assumption on that would be anything to do with engine/performance and programming as well as electronics interface, which I have already done. The car itself uses a standalone engine management system (AEM EMSv2) instead of the standard ECU. The intent of this is not to control systems, but otherwise an if/then system that routes power temporarily to a button.

Failsafes have also been taken into consideration: "The one caveat that comes to mind is if for some reason the authentication device would fail, would there be another way to fail-over to a different device? I would assume that a simple push-button would be able to change the logic in the Arduino to point to a different input for acceptance, but I would think that a third fail safe (hidden physical switch) would also be a good idea."

But hey, I get it. The primary "go pound sand" responses in here are deafening.

obxboost:
but it’s great to know that those with mental prowess of existential knowledge look down upon novices that are also looking to learn.

Well if your looking to learn, why not start at the beginning, get an Arduino, there are plenty of starter kits and tutorials around and learn the basics, flash an LED, read a switch get the fingerprint sensor working ?

After a bit of practical experience you would be in a far better position to understand the project you are attempting.

Whilst your intended project might seem straight forward its actually quite advanced, if its to be reliable and durable in an automotive environment. Most people tackling a project like this would probably have a few years experience of electronics.

srnet:
Well if your looking to learn, why not start at the beginning, get an Arduino, there are plenty of starter kits and tutorials around and learn the basics, flash an LED, read a switch get the fingerprint sensor working ?

After a bit of practical experience you would be in a far better position to understand the project you are attempting.

Whilst your intended project might seem straight forward its actually quite advanced, if its to be reliable and durable in an automotive environment. Most people tackling a project like this would probably have a few years experience of electronics.

I have years of experience in technology in general and understand the grandiose scope of what I want to undertake. I figured that a high-level overview in my OP would have been taken as such especially when I stated as much.

Now, let's take the "automotive" portion out of the equation. Let's simplify it for those that want to think too hard. Maybe some steps are missing, but follow along for the gist.

Step one: Rocker switch provides 12V Power
Step two: step down 12V to 5V for Arduino
Step three: Arduino looks for authentication device input (whether fingerprint, keypad or additional switch) to complete circuit for input that is determined via push button input to select which function to look for
Step four: Arduino supplies power output to activate a relay allowing power to a push button contact switch
Step five: Push button contact switch puts out power to high current relay allowing for start of something

Now since everyone has gotten their rather innocuous responses out of their system, maybe some real discussion can occur. Hell, I though the name of this forum was "Project Guidance", not "Flame Wars."

To start out I would purchase one of those RFID aftermarket starter devices for cars to see how someone else does it. They run about $25, and it might give you some ideas.

Having said that.

Step 1: 12V to 5v. You can start with a simple automotive 12V to USB adaptor.
Step 2: Arduino to Relay. Do an internet search "Arduino and automotive relay drivers" That should fix you right up.

Input ID: Start with an RFID setup which already exists for Arduino use. Use the search tool here and "RFID" and you should find hardware and code examples. Once you have that up and running you can then approach other encoder and decoder methods.

The fail-safes. Since those need to be carefully thought out and tend to be personalized, I won't comment.

obxboost:
I have years of experience in technology in general and understand the grandiose scope of what I want to undertake. I figured that a high-level overview in my OP would have been taken as such especially when I stated as much.

Maybe so, but we can only understand your experience on what you tell us;

First off, I will admit that even from the word "Go", I don't even know what model Arduino I would need for this kind of project, but I am very comfortable with soldering, as well as wiring

Maybe the forum has missunderstood, we are dinosaurs after all, but your first post does not suggest much experience in electronics and that is what you need when considering modifying motor vehicles in this way.

I think you have a different idea of "fail safe". For me, "safe" means the car can't be stolen. So a hidden switch that starts the car regardless of the fingerprint sensor is exactly as safe as not having a fingerprint sensor.

I once worked in an office with power door locks. In the event of a power failure, all the doors opened. For emergency evacuation.

I've seen other places where certain doors swing shut when power is lost, to stop fire spreading throughout the building.

So tell us what you think is "safe".

MorganS:
I think you have a different idea of "fail safe". For me, "safe" means the car can't be stolen. So a hidden switch that starts the car regardless of the fingerprint sensor is exactly as safe as not having a fingerprint sensor.

I once worked in an office with power door locks. In the event of a power failure, all the doors opened. For emergency evacuation.

I've seen other places where certain doors swing shut when power is lost, to stop fire spreading throughout the building.

So tell us what you think is "safe".

I like your way of thinking. I used to work in a hospital and worked with access control devices (door hardware, request to exit systems, as well as life safety systems and I found it very asinine that the fire pull stations that were right beside maglock doors (that had to be certified by the state) would override those systems and allow a baby safety system to be bypassed very easily.

A hidden switch specifically would bypass it all, but maybe there is a better option out there. But as a fail-safe, it would be something so that in case any of the hardware fails, it could still be started.

This car is rarely driven and rarely comes out of the garage due to it being such an invested project... I've been working on it since 2003 when I bought it. It does have an anti-theft system in it and without even so much as a key cylinder in it, I would doubt that a thief would really be able to steal this car as the upgrades on it make it a lot more difficult to drive, much less start without waking up a neighborhood lol

Well, if the neighbours know to call the police when they hear your car start, that seems relatively safe.

There was a neat project published online a few years ago where the guy made a Thor's hammer that couldn't be lifted except by the right fingerprint. Search for it. Very entertaining and instructive.

obxboost:
Maybe some steps are missing, but follow along for the gist.

Step one: Rocker switch provides 12V Power
Step two: step down 12V to 5V for Arduino
Step three: Arduino looks for authentication device input (whether fingerprint, keypad or additional switch) to complete circuit for input that is determined via push button input to select which function to look for
Step four: Arduino supplies power output to activate a relay allowing power to a push button contact switch
Step five: Push button contact switch puts out power to high current relay allowing for start of something

Now since everyone has gotten their rather innocuous responses out of their system, maybe some real discussion can occur. Hell, I though the name of this forum was "Project Guidance", not "Flame Wars."

I don't like the tone you are adopting. I certainly never said "go pound sand".

Based on the above list of steps you seem to have figured out the project. Now, what have you tried and exactly do you want help with?

As an aside there was an interesting Thread on the Forum a few months ago where some guy had bought a car with an Arduino security device in the boot (trunk) and it wasn't working. He spent a lot of time not listening to people here who told him to just drill a hole and open the trunk so he could get at the device - eventually that's what he did. I think he then managed to make contact with the guy who created the system.

...R