i'm planning on installing a carputer (obviously or i wouldnt be here lol) in my tbird, and i'm basing mine on mac (like many others lol). in my case, i'm planning on it being removable....a lot.
i'm admittedly kinda wierd. i dont like having multiple computers (with the exception of my pc next to my mac for the few programs i cant run outside of windows) mostly cause i do a lot of stuff, covering many categories, and frequently find myself signing up for forums and sites all the time, and it really gets to be a pain to keep syncing multiple computers (especially when they are as black and white as pc and mac), so i prefer to stay with one. luckily for me, its a laptop. specifically, an Apple Powerbook Titanium, G4 800MHz with 512mb ram (soon to be 1gb, only because WoW is running slow).
i plan on basing my carputer around this very laptop. as such, it needs to come out....like every time i leave the car...
in comparison to a lot of carputers i see here, mine is planned to be admittedly simple. a screen will be integrated into the dash, a controller into the center console, and a bracket under the seat to hold the laptop.
where this long diatribe in the fab section is leading to isnt the bracket to hold the laptop, the screen in the dash, nor even the controller in the center console. no, rather it is about the connector i need to make for my cables.
luckily for me, all (well almost, my audio jack is on the side) my connections are in the back of my laptop between the hinges (go mac) except the power which is outside the one hinge. i've been pondering a way to make a single block with every connection so that rather than have to plug in every cable every time i just flip the cover and push on the block. i started writing this lengthy bit to ask if any knows a way to make the connector, but at the start of this paragraph i think i figured it out. so i shall go on in the hopes it can inspire even one like minded individual.
i just remembered (for some ungodly reason inspiration often strikes from the middle of nowhere) some hardware i used to use back in the days of early pc's (i used to use them a lot before i switched to mac, back in the days when mac didnt offer so much, recently switched permanently cause the chance arose to get paid with a mac rather than cash...the mac was at a steal of price..couldnt say no). old printer switchers. i remembered how all they were were plugs screwed to a sheet of metal folded over.
then i realized i could do the same thing for what i need. take a little piece of metal, fold it up into a channel, fold the side tabs up, fold another little piece as a cover and screw that on. since they make virtually every cable with an industrial type counterpart, i should be able to find the dvi, usb, and firewire with a male, panel mount counterpart.
and in spending some time googling and looking through various search results before i post here, it seems that there are several places that offer unsoldered connectors, and i'm sure that in further looking i will find the ones i need. if not..i can always get some cables and pillage them
usb male connectors, a tiny loop could be tackwelded into the plate to hold this in place
was thinking about it, i actually dont really foresee using firewire for anything in the car. so the above dvi and usb would be all i need to complete the panel i need. from there i can solder on cables cut to length to go under the seat, under the center console, and to the appropriate devices, ie. touch screen, controller, usb port for bluetooth, etc
Have you considered this?
excuse me, sir. i love you. hadnt seen that :D
while that will be good for me at home, and i do believe i will order one of those very soon, it wouldnt work for me in the car unless i were to put it on a stand in the passenger side.
the biggest reason is because of the hinged plate that covers the ports on the back. i wouldnt be able to put the dock under the seat like i have planned because of that. i could remove the hinge so that i could slide it under the seat into the dock, but the there is the audio out jack on the side, still have to attach that. by putting the required ports into a little log, i could pull the log and cable out from under the seat attach it to the laptop (all while already sitting in the seat), as well as the audio cable, and then slide it into the bracket and go. if i wasnt so concerned with it being hidden, i would prolly just grab the dock and make a stand.
i would make a sort of model or diagram, but i havent found an easy to use paint program yet for osx (like i said i only recently converted).
and again, thanks for finding that dock, i am definately going to order one for here at home!