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Thread: 2001 Ford Ranger Edge 4x4

  1. #1
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    Jul 2007
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    2001 Ford Ranger Edge 4x4

    Hey everyone. I've had this car pc sitting in a box for two years but due to work blah blah blah and never got around to it until now. I bought all this stuff planning to put it into my 'fun' car, but then I changed my mind and decided to put it into my daily driver. Also, there's new stuff out there now I'd rather put into my fun car. So, my focus went from 'make it look awesome and spend lots of money' to 'put it in with what I got'.

    Also, I kinda went at this as a learning project, so there are some thing I could have improved on if I had taken the time. But oh well, I'll probably be tweaking this system more and more, then I'll move onto my fun car.

    Computer:
    Jetway 1.5 GHZ C7
    512 MB RAM
    250 GB 2.5 in hard drive
    Creative Labs external usb sound card
    Voompc-2 case
    M2-ATX
    GPS Reciever
    2007 Transreflective 7" screen from mp3car.com (yeah, it costs a lot)

    Windows XP SP3
    Ride Runner w/ LSX VOID 3.3 skin
    Streetdeck (just for back up)

    Audio:
    Power Akoustics BAMF 1200 4 channel amp
    Stock speakers

    Car:
    2001 Ford Ranger Edge 4x4 with 177,xxx miles (she squeaks)



    Here are the before and after pictures:
    BEFORE:


    There's a lot of room back there, but just enough that I couldn't really work in there to connect cables and such. Besides, I had a working Voompc-2 case to put everything in.

    AFTER:


    The bezel is from a Ford Explorer that I picked up at the local junkyard. There were some extra switches, so I grabbed them too.

    I turned the rear defogger switch into an on/off switch for the computer. I also have the power LED from the computer running to the LED in the switch.

    As for the rear window wiper selector, who knows? It's got 3 positions and a push button in it. Maybe I'll buy a Fusion Brain and play around with it.

    Oh and it's being held up by some trim adhesive, which I know looks bad. I've got another case and bezel on the way. I'll learn how to fabricate then.

    INSTALL:


    I chose this amp because of its small size and flat top. But it doesn't have any external fuses! The manual says 25A x2 but I don't see them anywhere, inside or out. Kind of makes me worried, but we'll see.



    Fits perfectly on the small space behind the seats.



    I had some spare sheet metal, so I cut up two pieces and screwed them to the amp using the existing holes holding the top down on the amp.



    VoomPC-2 case fitted on top of amp. I don't like this case btw. I couldn't find any of the connectors to add more wires for power to the screen and hub. I also need to run wires out for the power switch. So, I just popped open the DVD slot and ran everything out through the left. There's also a 4 port USB extension directly connected to the mother board sticking out.



    External USB sound card. Although I'm no audio guru, this sure helped out a lot with the sound quality. I was running the on-board sound with some Y-splitter before, but, wow, this sure made a difference. The best way I can explain it is that it gives the music depth. Also, I have a pair of RCA's running to the speaker in the screen for complete surround sound, but the quality of that speaker sucks so I disconnected it.

    I don't hibernate, so I haven't had any issues with it except that now I need a delay for the amp turn-on because I get speaker pop when the USB sound kicks in.



    Speaker wires running to the radio harness in the dash. Also, I tapped the IGN wire from here.



    I extended a molex connector from the M2-ATX to the front to power the screen and the USB Hub.



    USB Hub with screen and GSP plugged in. 7 ports.



    This is a pic of the back of the bezel after I had glued the screen to it.

    This is the reason why you want to test out all your equipment when you get it!! I never connected the touchscreen to a computer until now and it had been two years after I had bought it. It was wayyy off target. After calibrating and buying a new screen overlay with no luck, I finally pinpointed it by swapping out the controller board. So I made a hole for the touchscreen wires to come out the back and used double sided tape to mount the controller board to the back of the screen.



    Everything in place. There's a distribution block there too. It has the power and ground together in one.



    Fired up!



    Ride Runner with LSX VOID 3.3 skin

    Conclusion:
    So I guess that's it for a while. Next on the list is to re-do the bezel and make it nice. Also, I need to choose a GPS program to intergrate with Ride Runner.

    Street Deck is nice and the GPS layout is good, but that's about it. Music play is average, and you can't really do anything else if the car is moving. Not really their fault, that's just the way the law is. Maybe someday I'll pay for the upgrade to Streedeck 2 just to have it and check it out then.

    So far the longest I've ran it was four hours straight. I've had no heat issues with the amp, but I'm getting slow start up times during some of the hotter days.

    Well, I guess that's about it. If I think of anything else I'll add it in.

    Thanks to everyone on this site! I sure learned a lot!

    -Tien

    NEXT PROJECT:



    2003 Honda S2000

  2. #2
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    Jul 2007
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    I'll save this spot for when I redo the bezel

  3. #3
    Maximum Bitrate SjLucky's Avatar
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    Jul 2003
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    Hattiesburg, Mississippi
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    That's Some Nice Hot Glue Action!!!

  4. #4
    Newbie blackrosetiger's Avatar
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    East Millinocket, Maine
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    to get rid of the slow start up issues move the amp and carputer to opposite sides of the cab also run your speaker wires and power wires to opposite sides (the electro-magnetic waves are interfering with the sound quality. Also turn on the amp BEFORE starting the carputer this should relieve the "popping" noise. I have some more suggestions for you on how to install your screen so it looks factory. email me if you'd like to know how to do this at [email protected]

  5. #5
    Newbie blackrosetiger's Avatar
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    p.s. you're the first person I've seen other then me to use XPSP3. kuddos. I'll be installing my carputer however with Windows Media Center 2005 because I'll also be installing my Xbox 360 into my ride.

  6. #6
    Low Bitrate Xygar's Avatar
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    Provo, Ut
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    Yeah, the screen looks a little hodge-podge, even for a "just get it done" job. I'm sure it'll look way nicer if you get a chance to redo it.

    Now that S2000, can't wait to see what you're gonna do with that! That's not a bad little ride, can't say as I'd ever own one (too small to be comfortable), but they sure are nice.

  7. #7
    FLAC
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
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    1,322
    love the ranger. but you gotta do something with that screen... even i would be tempted to smash your window and just snag that expensive gadget.

    you can make it slide inside the dash if you want. ill build you the bezel for $300. just kidding, i wouldnt even do it for twice that price. http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/show...cd-budget.html

  8. #8
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    Jul 2007
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    Seattle, Washington
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    Wow, I almost forgot about this thread. I've updated my setup with a foxconn d150 atom board and and m3. I still need to try my hand at fiberglassing, but I've got car troubles that takes priority right now. I'll post updates some other time!

  9. #9
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
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    "This is the reason why you want to test out all your equipment when you get it!! I never connected the touchscreen to a computer until now and it had been two years after I had bought it. It was wayyy off target. After calibrating and buying a new screen overlay with no luck, I finally pinpointed it by swapping out the controller board. So I made a hole for the touchscreen wires to come out the back and used double sided tape to mount the controller board to the back of the screen."

    is this a simple double sided tape? my friend told me that i should not be using this,aside from electrical tapes because it caused him some problems before when he used it on his ford truck parts.

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