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Placing a 10.4" tablet PC screen in 1992 Mazda 626 (with pictures)

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  • Placing a 10.4" tablet PC screen in 1992 Mazda 626 (with pictures)

    Hi guys!

    I would really appreciate some feedback, please check this out!

    The problem is where and how do I fit a 10.4" plus tablet PC in my 1992 Mazda 626. Cockpit has a very 'classic' (means 'old') design with double DIN slot placed low close to the floor.

    No, I don't want to put a 7" or 8" tft in the DIN slot, I want it BIG! And I don't want to have the screen somewhere down there, not nice (and not convenient, and not safe).

    Let's have a closer look at the dash panel since it has the further inconvenience that the lower part is recessed by about 20mm (0.8in).

    So here is a sketch of the dimensions of the panel (it's in metric system, sorry!). The white outline marks the border of the dark-grey panel that sits inside the brighter dash framing - the photo in the background does not fit exactly since I had to correct the perspective of the picture and it did not work out exactly. Just remember the white outline has the exact size.

    Let's say the viewing area of the display is about 210 x 160 mm (got this figures from another thread here). I should have rather used the size of the whole (bare) LCD, but too late now. Add another 5-10mm at the borders of the red rectangle which marks the screen position.

    The first setup with the screen in landscape mode. It would be nice to have the screen mounted at the topmost position, but I see two problems:
    1. the screen would have to be recessed by about 2cm (at least) because of the shape of the dash that recesses at about 85mm measured from the top.
    2. It would also imply to remove the aircon controls. I've seen people on the forum do this, but I worry about the qualitiy of the result - these are all mechanical switches and I'm afraid it will be difficult to relocate them, at least for me

    The second setup mounts the screen in portrait mode, re-using the double DIN slot but extending it up to the area of the ashtray, which has to be removed.
    The screen would have to be recessed, too, but only for a smaller part at the top part of the screen. Of course the screen will be mounted very low, but will reach up due to its size.

    As a third option I thought about bridging the gap to the air vents, replacing those and the aircon control. But since I have no experience with fabrication I am really worried that it will look horrible. So I didn't even sketch this.

    Here is a schematics of the panel parts, seems I will have to cut out not only the covering front panel but also of the structure element behind it (No 4), e.g. the ashtray box

    So I guess the point where I lack most experience is fabrication (well, I have none), what is possible and what makes sense, what will look decent, especially related to how to tackle the problem of the recessed shape of the dash.

    Any advise/feedback is welcome - hey, that's a newbie forum!!


  • #2
    Of course your first option is ideal, with the screen in landscape. Take more of your dash apart, particularlly the HVAC controls to see how they are operated. Some controls, even though they are mechanical, are actually cabled (kind of like a throttle cable or the brake cable on a bicycle). If they are cabled, it could be as easy as using longer cables to reach the noew location. If they are not cabled, then it's going to be extremely difficult to move. Also I think if you have to have the screen recressed that's actually a good thing, you will have much less glare.


    • #3
      Thanks for your reply, black_mamba.

      I know my post is kind of a typical newbie post, that's why I appreciate your answer even more! Just wanted to say that I've been researching hours and hours, and have the software and hardware part pretty figured out, and I am eager to order my tablet PC.

      The fabrication part is the only thing that bothers me, since I have no experience here and I didn't find a lot of car setups that are similiar in dash design AND use a 10.4 screen. Mostly those people have a newer car with a modern cockpit design (dedicated area for indash navi or at least a stereo located in the upper part of the dash).

      Well, said that, I had another look at my collected links, and I will ask some of them directly for input and feedback on their setup and comment on my thread.

      I want to go ahead and order the tabletpc, which will take quite some time since I don't live in the US or Europe. This is why I need feedback from people with experience who can tell me whether it will most likely work out, or it is just a no-go because of something I missed. The feedback to my AC worries is well appreciated, and you're right that it's about time to rip the dashboard apart to have a closer look.