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  • USB Car Controller

    Just wanted to get some feedback for the project im thinking of making

    Basically its a complete Car-Computer interface.
    My Car doesnt have OBD II so i though i would make something for my self (I should be able to im doing a degree in EE!)

    Basically the idea is based around this
    http://www.dlpdesign.com/dlp-2232pbv10.pdf

    This is a USB to microchip interface and comes with source code to reprogram it.

    As standard it allows control of the outputs, reading of voltages from 5 A/D and interfaces with some cheap temperature sensors - DS18S20

    Basically i was planning to add to this a microchip I/O expander to give 16 relay outputs (uses only two i/o pins of above device)

    A RPM monitering function

    A nitrous controller (uses PWM to control flow of nitrous into engine and cuts nitrous if any engine sensors go out of range)

    Another feature that i want to include is servo control to allow the thing to control the sliders of old school style temperature things (mainly coz where i want to put my screen means i have to remove em) and of course it will control the other A/C controls

    Thats it for now im sure i will think of more as i build the thing, maybe a toaster function or something

    The only problem im having at the moment is getting one of these things, there $50 over in the states but 59 here!!. Unfortunatly the company (in the states) i want to buy it from wont take my crappy maestro card!

    SO, watcha think?

  • #2
    You do realize that if you were to have your nitrous boost on when your computer crashes, you're going to burn up your engine....
    Explain that one to the insurance company....

    I'm not saying that the idea isn't cool. It's probably even very doable. Just be aware of the risks involved.
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?



    Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.

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    • #3
      You could install a relay for safety and cut the nitrous if the PC crashes.
      I didn't turn my back on my country, my country turned it's back on me.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by bpierce815
        You could install a relay for safety and cut the nitrous if the PC crashes.
        Oh the computer doesnt control the nitrous, you upload settings to the device and then it does the work, it would be too slow if you were going via the PC, then the circuit or 12v rail would have to fail, in which case everything would stop working

        It also would use only one FET for both nitrous and fuel so if that blows BOTH solenoids would close

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        • #5
          yeah sounds cool. go for it.

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          • #6
            I think you are trying to let it do too many things.

            Why not use a seperate dedicated PIC for the nitro? The controls can be time criticals.

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            • #7
              Moreover, why start with that module? You can just get one of the new PICs with a built-in USB peripheral (18F2455,2550,4455,4550). These even come in 28 and 40 pin DIP packages so they're easy to put on project boards. With the 40 pin variety you'll get oodles of I/O, A/D and timers. You'll also have access to a hardware UART and of course USB. You can download the C18 C compiler from Microchip and you're on your way. They even have free code you can use to implement a bootloader.

              It should easily be able to do everything you want. Of course, it's a not a huge deal to add secondary (cheaper) PICs for important tasks. They can communication with the main controller over any I/O pin.
              2004 4runner

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              • #8
                forgive my ignorance, i want to confirm if my idea is correct:
                Wouldn't a phidget do this trick? My idea is, i wanted to get a phidget that will control my power windows, door locks and also get input such as temperatures.
                carpc blog

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                • #9
                  Oo pwede yun.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by execute
                    forgive my ignorance, i want to confirm if my idea is correct:
                    Wouldn't a phidget do this trick? My idea is, i wanted to get a phidget that will control my power windows, door locks and also get input such as temperatures.
                    Cheaper, more inputs and outputs.

                    How easy would this be to program in delphi?
                    PowerVoice v1 | NaviVoice Source
                    GammaControl v2.4
                    SKINbedder v3

                    1995 Lexus SC300

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                    • #11
                      phidgets would do the trick they are redicuolsly expensive for my liking (im a student), also this way i can make it exactally how i want!

                      The main reason i chose this over a PIC with USB on it already, is i wanted something that would be pretty quick to develop, I really didnt want the hassle of programming the USB code, coz it doesnt sound like fun and i didnt want to write my own drivers for PC.

                      How easy would this be to program in delphi?
                      Im not sure wot you mean by this, but the PIC is programmed in C. However if you are talking about the frontend for this, then you could write that in anything as long as it can access a com port (which is wot the computer sees)

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Pilt
                        phidgets would do the trick they are redicuolsly expensive for my liking (im a student), also this way i can make it exactally how i want!

                        The main reason i chose this over a PIC with USB on it already, is i wanted something that would be pretty quick to develop, I really didnt want the hassle of programming the USB code, coz it doesnt sound like fun and i didnt want to write my own drivers for PC.

                        Im not sure wot you mean by this, but the PIC is programmed in C. However if you are talking about the frontend for this, then you could write that in anything as long as it can access a com port (which is wot the computer sees)
                        I'm also a student
                        So let me get this straight: this has 16 inputs and 16 outputs? What kind of inputs? Is PIC programming necessary? Why?
                        PowerVoice v1 | NaviVoice Source
                        GammaControl v2.4
                        SKINbedder v3

                        1995 Lexus SC300

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by 0l33l
                          I'm also a student
                          So let me get this straight: this has 16 inputs and 16 outputs? What kind of inputs? Is PIC programming necessary? Why?

                          16 relay outputs, 1 RPM input (from TDC/crankshaft sensor), 3 servo outputs, and the rest can be whatever (nitrous), inputs or outputs
                          (cant be bothered to count the ones left but its about another 10 -14)

                          No the thing comes with code but i will be modifying it to have more functions, then if you wanted to use those mods you would just get a file off me and upload it to the thing using a program made by the company who makes it, thats why its good coz its easy to reprogram, coz i dont want to buy a programmer

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                          • #14
                            Did you check WalMart I think they had programmers on sale this week. (just kidding) Anyway I think it is a get idea and A good peice of hardware to work with specially since it is half the price of most of the other relay boards. good luck with your project!

                            Does anyone have this board already in use? Which funtions are you going to have to add? anything like the tach and ac controlls that is not just a simple on-off pulse?
                            My Install

                            Software:
                            CFiG v1
                            iGuidance Plugin for CF

                            CarShell
                            Working shell for a CarPC

                            StopWatch
                            StopWatch plugin remade for centrafuse RC1

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by alti
                              Did you check WalMart I think they had programmers on sale this week. (just kidding) Anyway I think it is a get idea and A good peice of hardware to work with specially since it is half the price of most of the other relay boards. good luck with your project!

                              Does anyone have this board already in use? Which funtions are you going to have to add? anything like the tach and ac controlls that is not just a simple on-off pulse?
                              Well unfortunatly the nearest wallmart to me is about 2000 miles away, and to be honest i really cant be bothered to get off my lazy backside to make the trip there.

                              Well the thing as standard has 5 A/D inputs and 8 relay outputs, so for the first board i design i will use just these, so people who dont want other features can make it.

                              The functions that need adding will be the Tach and the Servo control but i have C code for this its just a case of adding it to the current code, but i still need to get one of these things!

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