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'08 Dodge Dakota, Console Fab, Install Pix

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  • '08 Dodge Dakota, Console Fab, Install Pix

    Ok, well the time has come to install carPC V2 into my truck. This truck has provided quite a challenge for the reasons that I want to retain the OEM radio and sound system. I normally would remove all of that but this is the first vehicle I purchased (always leased before) and it came with Alpine speakers and amp, and sounds really good, and goes very loud. It also has steering wheel controls and a 6 disk in-dash changer, so I am leaving it. I am going to tap into it via the AUX input. For this I am going to dissemble the OEM radio and solider on a lead to the AUX input so I don't have wires showing in the front.

    First item on the agenda is obviously screen mounting. After studying the dash over and over contemplating where the screen should go I decided to mount it below the OEM radio and climate controls. I have to relocate the 4x4 switch but that is easy enough. The OEM power circuit is right there so I can power the screen and PC with this (20 amp). The PC itself is going to be inside of the console, it fits perfect! Once everything is done the PC will be completely hidden but will allow me easy enough access to its I/O ports and will be bolt-in. For the exposed screws I am going to use tamper proof torx style to deter theft.

    The bezel is fabricated from .063" aluminum, and is extremely rigid. It holds a full unmodified lilliput in place without any modding. It is not nearly finished, this is rather a start. Once completed it will have the sides enclosed and either be covered in leather with a nice padding at the bottom where my hand will be resting while using the touch. If not leather covered I am thinking some sort of black or gray wrinkle finish. Time will tell.

    Anyway here are the pics of the parts so far. It is a complex 3d part that I designed by first making a cardboard template, then designing the part to scale in a vector program, finally CNC machining the shape and using a break to bend the angles. It uses the OEM mounting points on the top, and I drilled some holes in the bottom.

    Since the center console is a bit offset to favor the driver from the radio bezel, I had to design to accommodate. I plan to add some switches, USB ports, etc. to the front. Also the position keeps the screen glare to a minimum, it's low and recessed so the sun rarely hits it.
    Attached Files
    Build Things, it keeps your brain busy.

    AutoPC v1 (Retired) - AutoPC v2 (in progress) - www.shocknet.us

  • #2
    Here are some of the test fit:
    Attached Files
    Build Things, it keeps your brain busy.

    AutoPC v1 (Retired) - AutoPC v2 (in progress) - www.shocknet.us

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    • #3
      And here is the PC that will be running it all, this will be inside the console under the monitor.

      More pics to come...
      Attached Files
      Build Things, it keeps your brain busy.

      AutoPC v1 (Retired) - AutoPC v2 (in progress) - www.shocknet.us

      Comment


      • #4
        that looks pretty damn good, why did you leave the lip on the left though?
        Scion CarPC

        Bluetooth Audio Gateway Tutorial

        How to speed up boot with buried features in msconfig

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        • #5
          Looking good homeboy, While you are at it you may as well come on down the street and design me one for my truck
          If you cant DODGE em, RAM em.

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          • #6
            Thx injector, the lip is there because I wanted to center the screen as much as possible but since the bezel extends down onto the center console I had to make the lip and the console is not centered with the dash, it favors the drivers side. I can always cut that lip off before I do the finishing.
            Build Things, it keeps your brain busy.

            AutoPC v1 (Retired) - AutoPC v2 (in progress) - www.shocknet.us

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Ramanator View Post
              Looking good homeboy, While you are at it you may as well come on down the street and design me one for my truck
              Hey raminator, I can design and fab you one up, let me know via PM this is what I do for a living.
              Build Things, it keeps your brain busy.

              AutoPC v1 (Retired) - AutoPC v2 (in progress) - www.shocknet.us

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by blk02si View Post
                Thx injector, the lip is there because I wanted to center the screen as much as possible but since the bezel extends down onto the center console I had to make the lip and the console is not centered with the dash, it favors the drivers side. I can always cut that lip off before I do the finishing.
                yea not to mention the fact that whoever designed the housing for the new lilis was either drunk or on acid he was on something because the bezel is bigger on one side from factory.
                Scion CarPC

                Bluetooth Audio Gateway Tutorial

                How to speed up boot with buried features in msconfig

                Comment


                • #9
                  You don't think that it sits a lil too low down there?
                  If you cant DODGE em, RAM em.

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                  • #10
                    It does sit lower than I am used to, but it's really the only option I have unless I do some major work on the dash, relocate the OEM radio and fab the screen into there. I figure when I am driving I should be looking at the road anyway, and messing with the PC when I am stopped. Plus mounting it low is GREAT for dealing with sun glare. It angled somewhat upward at the driver so it remains easy to read. It also can still been seen from the back seat so I went with it.
                    Build Things, it keeps your brain busy.

                    AutoPC v1 (Retired) - AutoPC v2 (in progress) - www.shocknet.us

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Got a lot more done today including mounting the PC to the center console and installation of the HD tuner. It's starting to take shape, I think am going to run a fused and relayed 10 gauge wire to run the PC, HD Tuner & Screen.

                      I cannot believe how perfect the PC fit into the console considering I built the PC before I even bought the truck. I built it on a solid piece of aluminum for testing but it turned out to be part of the chassis. I fabricated the bar that spans the console to hold it in place. All the wiring will come out at a perfect spot right under the radio.

                      I also found a good spot for the tuner as you can see in the pic, all the ports are accessible if I pull the dash trim. I ended up using silicone beads to mount the tuner so it remains rattle free.
                      Attached Files
                      Build Things, it keeps your brain busy.

                      AutoPC v1 (Retired) - AutoPC v2 (in progress) - www.shocknet.us

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        looks good but I'm wondering how come you didn't move the HU down to where the screen is and the screen to where the HU is?

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                        • #13
                          Lookin' nice, d0tech, scroll up a bit for your answer
                          FAQ to the FAQ - Great Starting Point

                          My 2006 Honda Accord Carputer - Work In Progress
                          My 1997 Chrysler Concorde Carputer - Died

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                          • #14
                            I like the location, its glare free and out of sight.

                            I decided to take apart the OEM radio and it looks like it's going to be a rather simple process to tap into the AUX input cleanly and drop a signal wire out the back to the PC.

                            Also there are 2 buttons on my radio that are options the radio is not equipped with. I may try to convert them to power / reset buttons for the PC

                            Looks like a LED swap would be pretty easy too, although I think I am going to swap out the LED's in the lilliput to match the OEM lighting.

                            I was also tossing around the idea of gutting the OEM six disk changer and putting a standard slot load DVD player in there that would interface with the PC. This way I could use it for DVD movies and It would operate like the original radio.

                            So many brainstorms, so little time..
                            Attached Files
                            Build Things, it keeps your brain busy.

                            AutoPC v1 (Retired) - AutoPC v2 (in progress) - www.shocknet.us

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Finished tapping the AUX input, traced the solider pads with a multimeter and hooked up an extension mini-plug that will be run to the output on the motherboard. The radio has "auto sensing" that automatically knows when something is plugged in. Well without a miniplug in the slot my piggyback wire would not be sensed by the radio. I found that sensor circuit and just bridged the terminals together with solider, so now the radio always thinks something is plugged in and will allow me to go to AUX input even though nothing is physically plugged into the front. The front input also retains full functionality as long as I mute the PC. No wires showing for a clean look.

                              Here is my solider job (cannot wait to buy a new camera and stop using my phone!)
                              Attached Files
                              Build Things, it keeps your brain busy.

                              AutoPC v1 (Retired) - AutoPC v2 (in progress) - www.shocknet.us

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