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Thread: '08 Dodge Dakota, Console Fab, Install Pix

  1. #21
    High Voltage blk02si's Avatar
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    I've actually built a complete bolt in for a member on these forums who installed it into a JK Jeep Wrangler. He had the exact same OEM radio as me. I still have all the building plans and CNC program to build another one. It used a pico MoBo to fit in the dash. I actually could easily mount the screen into the radio area without modifying the dash at all, by custom making another kit of even using a mekatronics kit. The hard part would be moving the OEM radio, fabricating new mounts and bezels for it.

    So if I decide to move the screen up to the OEM radio opening I will just ditch the OEM radio and get myself a nice Alpine amp. I've been doing some side work for a local installer and he can get me good deals on new digital Alpine amp and they sound amazing! It would match the OEM Alpine speakers too. I may end up going this route as I use the HD radio tuner anyways (sounds better than the OEM tuner) never use the Sat. radio (sounds like crap and only free until Jan 2010) and would like to add a sub on the mono channel of the amp.

    As of right now though, I've been using the system as pictured for a week now, and it's been ok. I do have to look down further, which takes the road further out of my peripheral vision but it really is a better place as the screen gets no glare, when I can see a lot of "would be" glare shining on the radio. The way it is now also provides the "out of sight" security. The truck is high, the screen is low, it's hard to see it from the outside unless you are right up on the truck looking inside and down. It's also hidden in the shadows of the truck interior at night. It will be even more hidden when the white bezel gets finished! On the other hand, the radio location is easily visible from the outside.
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  2. #22
    High Voltage blk02si's Avatar
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    Ok some serious upgrades going on with the PC hardware. I pulled the entire system and upgraded the northbridge heatsink to a passive zalman unit. I also had 2 left over SSD'd from a job so I decided to redo my OS and software using one of them. The CF module is still intact, tucked away for a backup

    I am now using an 8Gb Transcend SSD. It is a SLC type flash, which is the best available right now, supposedly faster, more stable, and longer rated life. So far every build I've done has used MLC type SSD's so it will be cool to try out some top end stuff. The extra drives are only 8gb yet cost $115. They are also rare as they are IDE interface, which is not as common. (bought to upgrade older machines originally) SO far the drive appers even faster than the fast CF setup 2x the space too!

    Since this thread has turned in to some what of a worklog, I am going to see if the mod will move it.
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  3. #23
    High Voltage blk02si's Avatar
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    So I am checking the electronics installer database on my truck to find a modulator that will allow me to directly tap the OEM amp. For those who wanted the screen where the radio is stay tuned.

    I also redid some more of the PC, split loomed all the wires and fabricated a plate to enclose the top of the console / pc case. I'll have some pix uploaded soon.

    There is also a good chance the factory amp and speakers will be replaced with higher end components from JL audio. Since I started a new job doing work installing high end systems I have good contacts for the equipment
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  4. #24
    High Voltage blk02si's Avatar
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    Ordered the bybyte kit to install the LCD in place of the OEM radio. I've been wanting to check out this kit for awhile now so I ordered one. I'll post the results when I get it.

    http://www.bybyte.com/ABS-install.htm

    I also think I figured out how to tap into the factory amp inputs to get rid of the head unit completely. Guess i'll also have to order a fusion brain to re-enable my steering wheel controls for PC use
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  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by blk02si View Post
    Ordered the bybyte kit to install the LCD in place of the OEM radio. I've been wanting to check out this kit for awhile now so I ordered one. I'll post the results when I get it.

    http://www.bybyte.com/ABS-install.htm

    I also think I figured out how to tap into the factory amp inputs to get rid of the head unit completely. Guess i'll also have to order a fusion brain to re-enable my steering wheel controls for PC use
    Are you able to share how you are going to control the factory amp yet?

  6. #26
    High Voltage blk02si's Avatar
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    Well I have the pinout and wiring diagram of the vehicle but before I start cutting and splicing I'm looking for a modulator that plugs into the factory harness to give me line level inputs. The problem is the amp turns on digitally, so I need the modulator to get it to turn on. I'll know what I need on Sat. stopping by the distributor. I'll post what I find out
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  7. #27
    High Voltage blk02si's Avatar
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    Got the bybyte kit and installed the lilli. I like this kit, for reasons of cost and insulation purposes. I had to extend the IR to fit into the hole on side of the kit via soldering. I will have the double din kit on sat to see how it bolts up into the OEM cavity. Turns out the module to interface with the OEM amp is $80 so I may just tap into it myself or put the $80 towards an amp.
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  8. #28
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    Curious to know what module you are talking about to interface that OEM amp?

  9. #29
    Maximum Bitrate tempgp's Avatar
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    how did u band that aluminum plate? Just cat a path and band it?
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  10. #30
    High Voltage blk02si's Avatar
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    @temp - Yes, I CNC machined the aluminum, then used a break to make the bends. I designed a cardboard template first to reduce the cost of material and CNC time

    @Nitro - I can use the interface pictured below but it's expensive. I can get it wholesale, but still, I figure if I am spending the money I may as well upgrade the factory amp to a real alpine as well. We shall see. I am currently reverse engineering the factory amp. I figured out how to get line level into the amp, just can't fiqure out how to turn it on without the factory radio.
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