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Thread: How do you ground a laptop?

  1. #1
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    5

    How do you ground a laptop?

    Hi everyone,

    Looooooooooooooong time lurker (over 4 years), first time poster here.
    Let me start by saying, I have searched through the threads for this info, but could not find it. I'm sorry if it is there and I have missed it though.

    MY SETUP
    - IBM thinkpad T40 (running XP with rr frontend)
    --- This is powered using a dc cigarette lighter adaptor
    - Lilliput indash motorised screen
    --- Powered the same way a headunit is

    My issue is extreme amounts of interference

    My questions are:

    1. I have read that the pc should be grounded, but I am unsure on how I would ground the laptop. There is a metal strip that runs around this inside of the case (under the laptop). Can I solder/screw a wire to this and ground it?

    2. the Lilliput indash monitor has a wire coming from it that is listed as "to ground computer" (i may be wrong on the wording, but it is roughly that).
    If i run this to the body(metal part) on the laptop, will it ground it through the indash monitor?

    3. I have conected alll the grounding wires from the monitor to the single ground wire that was used for the headunit, is this bad?

    4. And finally, I accidentally touched the battery wire to metal whilst working on it, and it sparked. I have checked the fuses, and they all look fine, but the power wire that was innitially used for the headunit does not carry power anymore.
    I have instead spliced into the power wire running to the cigarette lighter and power it that way. Is it bad to power the laptop (dc cigarette lighter adaptor) and the monitor off the same wire?

    I'm sorry about all the questions, hopefully I can sort this out, oh and I will post pictures of my setup in the next few weeks (once I have all the issues sorted)

  2. #2
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    5
    no-one? Have I got this in the wrong section?

  3. #3
    FLAC
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Dartmouth, MA
    Posts
    914
    Laptops are built differently than PCs so you really shouldn't need to ground them because their negative wire already takes care of it. In a DC system, ground and negative are the same thing.

    The metal frame of the car is the ground/negative wire for the whole car. If you touch a positive wire to it, you're shorting a circuit and whatever fuse that wire is connected to will blow. If it's not fused, something will catch on fire.

    If a wire stops working after touching it to the frame of the car, you either blew a fuse or the wire caught on fire and came apart which is highly unlikely. There is a fuse somewhere in your car. Find it and fix it. You may notice down the road that something else isn't working.

    As far as grounding all those monitor wires, what wires are you talking about?
    The only thing you really should have needed to do in the monitor is attach is positive wire to a 12 volt source and its negative wire to the negative/ground of the car...
    My Nearly Complete Car:
    http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/show...ed-car-pc.html

    Micro Control Center... Control Your Car Across the Internet
    http://www.mp3car.com/fusion-brain/1...-internet.html

    Website: (It's a work in progress, really. All my projects have taken me from ever really developing it.)
    http://paulfurtado.com/

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