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Thread: 2007 Ford Fusion SE Carputer

  1. #1
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
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    2007 Ford Fusion SE Carputer

    Hey guys,

    after going back and forth for a couple weeks trying to figure out exactly how I want to install everything, I've decided to remove the factory radio bezel and mak my own bezel to fit a Lilliput EBY-701 and a single-DIN head unit underneath (there is just enough room to fit them both, less then 1" to spare ).

    Here is what the dash originally looks like from the factory:


    here is where the monitor will be mounted (without the tire pressure gauge )


    the buttons for the hazard lights, mileage computer, passenger airbag indicator, etc will have a temporary home (still hooked up) in the glove box for a while until I find a permanent spot for them:


    here is the fitted [new] bezel:


    my two favorite benchtop power tools, drill-press and band-saw


    first cut:


    preview; niether one fits yet. I intentionally cut the holes too small so that I could sand/file down the rough cuts into smooth lines:


    second fitting, since it fit the first time, it obviusly still fits, I just wanted to do it anyways


    that's as far as I've gotten so far. ok, I know it's far from finished, but hey you gotta start somwhere

  2. #2
    Newbie RESET's Avatar
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    Very nice setup, thanks for letting me know in my thread. I plan to keep the factory HU so that I can keep the use of the steering wheel controls. I am now toying with the idea of moving the HU into the lower compartment of the armrest. It gets warm in there too but I think the HU will handle it. I won't know for sure until I have the computer in hand and have a chance to do trial fits like you have been doing.

    What do you plan to cover the plywood with?

    P.S. Yes, I am the same RESET that is on several Fusion sites as well as Cardomain.

  3. #3
    Fusion Brain Creator 2k1Toaster's Avatar
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    Looks good so far. I too am curious as to how you will be finishing it so it doesnt look like plywood!
    Fusion Brain Version 6 Released!
    1.9in x 2.9in -- 47mm x 73mm
    30 Digital Outputs -- Directly drive a relay
    15 Analogue Inputs -- Read sensors like temperature, light, distance, acceleration, and more
    Buy now in the MP3Car.com Store

  4. #4
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
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    well, my plan was (and still is) to simply layer (spray on) enough primer to fill in the lines, then sand it smooth and paint it. I think the "finished" look will be good. if you have other suggestions my ears are open.

    UPDATE: I've finished widening the cutouts on the bezel, and sanding/filing all the edges smooth and straight, and have sprayed on the first few layers of primer. it's getting there

    P.S. even if this doesn't come out perfect, that's ok. I still want to make a fiberglass bezel to replace it with in the future. for now I'm just anxious to get this long overdue project started

  5. #5
    Fusion Brain Creator 2k1Toaster's Avatar
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    I guess that will be fine in your car. It really isnt curved, so it wont look weird. I am just used to curvy dashes, so a big flat piece sort of stuck out in my mind.
    Fusion Brain Version 6 Released!
    1.9in x 2.9in -- 47mm x 73mm
    30 Digital Outputs -- Directly drive a relay
    15 Analogue Inputs -- Read sensors like temperature, light, distance, acceleration, and more
    Buy now in the MP3Car.com Store

  6. #6
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
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    the dash does curve a little bit. since, the monitor will be mounted to the bezel itself, it will have to be screwed down (the finished version will have visible screw heads showing, but that doesn't bother me as long as it's symetrical.

    even after several coats of primer and paint, the wood grain still shows through, but I really don't mind it. to be honest, I think it actually looks nice like I said, this is only temporary anyways. I'd rather spend my time setting everything up and getting it all functional right now. that way I can take my time and do a good job on the final fiberglass version (you won't see screw heads on that one ).

    I hope to have it installed tomorow, then I'll have some new pics to post (and then I start installing the computer itself )

  7. #7
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    Looking good so far. I'm glad your using the space behind the bezel wisely. I want to do something similar to my fusion when I redo the interior. When I first popped off that bezel, the first thing I can think of was "carputer." And Im glad Im not the only one.

  8. #8
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
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    at this point, everything was looking good. looking back at this photo I wish I left it unpainted. I actually like the real wood look, I think it adds a touch of "class" hehe (the head unit in this picture is just an old model I used for fitting purposes only, I have bought a new HU since which you'll see later on)


    next I installed the laptop in the trunk and ran the video, usb, and audio cables. (I haven't run power cables to the trunk yet, but it's not necessary yet anyways. the leptop can be charged via cig lighter socket and then run for about 4 hours on it's own battery).


    I made a temporary power switch that will sit under the driver's seat. this will be replaced when I find a nice flush mount momentary SPST button switch to mount on the bezel to the left of the monitor.


    I originally was going to mount the monitor to the bezel itself but changed my mind. I made a 3 piece aluminum bracket to mount the monitor to the dash (via two holes/screws formerly used to secure the factory stereo). I made the bracket adjustable about 1/2" in any direction, tightened with a wing nut from behind. this allows me to adjust the monitor position and secure it without having to remove it from the dash.


    after filing, sanding, priming, sanding again, priming again, sanding again, priming again, and finally painting several coats on... the bezel was ready to install. so I mounted the bezel.


    I knew it wasn't perfect, but I did expect it to look better than this. I'm dissapointed with the crappy look of this bezel. I will be re-doing this bezel later on, but the next step is getting the carputer up and running...

  9. #9
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
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    ok, so everything is installed, hooked up, and working fine. no issues (yet)







    now that everything is up and running, it's time to replace that hideous bezel. I was going to attemp to fix up the plywood bezel, but it's just not worth it. I'll just make a new one out of a different material. I need to read up more and practice a bit before I will be able to make a good looking fiberglass bezel (since I've never fiberglassed anything before). so until then I'm just going to make one out of something I have lying around the house, it can't look much worse than that plywood bezel, so it should be at least a slight improvement for the time being

  10. #10
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
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    ok, so I made a new bezel out of a leftover piece of countertop laminate board. it's very thin, easy to cut, and flexible enough to bend/conform to the curve of the dashboard. since the monitor is bolted to the factory radio mounts, the bezel doesn't have to be strong. it is however going to be holding the head unit up about 1/2" from the bottom so I re-enforced it with plywood strips behind the bezel (only around the head unit).

    once the paint was semi-dry (I am very impatient), I test fitted the bezel onto the dash. not only does it look much better than the former plywood version, but I think I actually looks good in general



    unfortunetly, because I was so eager to get it in and take a picture I ended up pressing some nasty fingerprints and smudges into the paint. so I had to sand it down, re-prime, and re-paint it. this time I'm letting the paint dry overnight before i touch it again

    so my next step is to relocate the buttons that are currently in my glovebox. these buttons control the dashboard's "information center" and the hazard lights. I am in the process of making a two-piece panel to replace the small compartment in front on the shifter/under the dash to house these buttons.

    well, back to work...

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