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Thread: Carputer Placement

  1. #1
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    Carputer Placement

    I was wondering if anyone knew of good places to install the carputer? I have an 88' S-10, and was wondering if I can put a mini-itx board in behind the head unit. I know I would have to relocate the head unit, but that's not a problem. The only thing I'm worried about is the temperature inside the dahs in the summer. Do you think it would be too hot for the carputer to operate, or is there a good cooling solution? custom air ducts? water cooling maybe? any ideas? does anyone out there have a carputer installed in a first gen s-10? Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Watercooling would not work in a car for several reasons. Most importantly, water cooling works by moving cold water over hot parts. Hoewever, on a hot day, the water would get very hot and therefore would not cool well. To make this work you'd need some way to cool the water (peltier cooler, etc) but these generate heat as well...you see where I'm going with this.
    Next, in an in-car environment with the movement, bumps, shocks, etc it would not take long for the tubes running the water to come lose, then you can kiss the capruter goodbye.
    Better off to move the carputer to a location where there is more ventilation than dehind the dash. Not sure exactly what your interior is like, but is there room under the seats, behind the seats, etc? Those places will get more air circulation, which will help the PC run cool. Apart from that, lots of high quality fans, a good heatsink, etc are things that will help. The EPIA (which I assume is what you're using since you said mini-itx) does not come with a very big heatsink/fan since these CPUs usually don't generate much heat. For in car use, you should look into a bigger/better cooler, then just move as much air as possible over the parts that get hot. Good luck!

  3. #3
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    Yeah, I have a 95 talon (looks just like arby's), and I was planning on putting my carputer in the console/dash (just below or above the headunit). But it has just started warming up, and as I will begin ordering parts in the next few weeks I was thinking if it would get to hot (it's also a black car). Is it possible to that it might actually get hot enough to melt my computer or any of it's components like the hard drive (you know, like the example VHSes at the video store)?

  4. #4
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    Water cooling would work in a car, its not really that diffrent than your home pc. You wouldnt use a peltier to cool the water, but a small radiator or heater core. Also, I wouldnt worry about the hoses coming loose, especially if you have a zip-tie around the hose barbs. I would say that water cooling would be a little too much for a car, especially since you wouldnt be overclocking it. You would be better off with a good heatsink and fan.
    MP300E

  5. #5
    FLAC DodgeCummins's Avatar
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    I live in TX.

    Never had a problem with heat.

    The heat my laptop produces is hotter than my truck gets with the windows up.

    Of course I have tint...and put one of those insulated thick silver windshield reflectors up.

  6. #6
    FLAC MP3DUB's Avatar
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    I'd just like to point out the fact that water cooling is one of the principles of modern engines (the fact that many people use radiators or heater cores from cars for their pcs). It won't keep the pc as cool on a hot day as a water cooling setup in your air conditioned room, but it would work. And if hoses just popped free when subjected to bumps, the water cooling system wasnt secured securly enough or we wouldn't have the modern internal combustion engine. And the only thing ive ever seen mention of melting was a linksys wifi usb box that sat on the rear shelf of the persons car. Only plastics would have the possibility of melting (ie, not your hdd), and only then if in dirrect sunlight. And cars have a phase change cooling system (the ac) if you really wanted to get insane with it.
    -Nick

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  7. #7
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    Well, the biggest reason i wanted to do this is to keep the system cool in the summer. I knew that the dash gets really hot, but wasn't sure if the INSIDE of the dash gets as hot as the outside. I'm sure it dosen't but I was curious to see if it got too hot inside the dash for the carputer to operate. Water cooling was one option I was looking at if it in fact would be too hot. If fan cooling will be sufficent, I'll go with that, since it's a heck of alot cheaper. Maybe someday I'll go with the watercooling, but probably not now. And I agree with MP3DUB that the hoses wouldn't break. I had thought about routing it thru the A/C as well, but alas, I don't have any A/C.

  8. #8
    Maximum Bitrate eugenen's Avatar
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    The head unit depth in an older S-10 is not a lot, may be hard to squeeze in there. You have a 1.5 DIN heaght but anly like 4" depth. If you don't have the vents above (mine had the little storage shelf there) you could rework the part there and go higher as well or make a display come ou of it. There is also a lot of room behind the seat in the standard cab or behind the fold up seats in the extended cab, or use the little shelf along the bottom of the dash, or go overhead like I did in my second gen S-10. http://photos.yahoo.com/bc/eugenec9/...Player&.view=t

  9. #9
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    The specs for an EPIA board are 170mm x 170mm, at least that's what it says...

    I cut out a template of the board (ok, a piece of paper) 170mm x 170mm and there's plenty of room back there for it to fit, so I'm not worried about the fit. I'm also going to fab a custom fiberglass panel to hold the LCD and to lower the HU down to that little shelf under the dash.

  10. #10
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    I saw this on ebay, could it be used to automaticaly control some fans while the carputer is in the dash. I can set it so multipule fans can turn on at certain temperatures. Good Idea??

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