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Thread: 2004 Ford Explorer (1400W system)

  1. #1
    Maximum Bitrate Snootch's Avatar
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    2004 Ford Explorer (1400W system)

    Hi all, I’ve been out of touch with the community for a while, I removed the PC in my Trans Am, and I’m selling the car since I bought a new BMW which has all the utility I was looking for in a car PC. But enough about me, I’m posting to show you all the latest system I’ve been doing for a friend of mine, with a step-by-step log of all the work that’s been done to the vehicle.

    Vehicle: 2004 Ford Explorer
    Color: Silver
    Interior color: Medium Gray

    Computer:
    CPU: Intel Atom 1.6 Ghz dual core
    Case: Morex T-1610 (black)
    Motherboard: Intel D945GSEJT
    Hard Drive: Intel X25m 80Gb SSD
    Memory: 2Gb DDR2 SODIMM
    PSU: Carnetix P2140
    Screen: Mp3car.com 7” Sunlight readable Lilliput
    OS: Windows 7 32-bit
    Front End: Centrafuse 3.1 w/ Garmin GPS
    GPS: US GlobalSat BU-353
    Bluetooth: Nano BT USB
    Wi-Fi: Linksys USB dongle
    Microphone: Andrea Superbeam® Stereo Array Microphone
    Controller: Griffin Technology Powermate

    Audio System:
    Amplifier: Rockford Fosgate 25 to Life Power 1000 (5ch, 100 x 4, 930 +1)
    Subwoofers: 4 x Elemental Designs 11Kv.2 10”
    Satellite speakers: 4x JL Audio C5 570x 5X7” in stock locations
    Capacitor: Stinger SPC505 5 Farad capacitor
    Alternator: 250A High Output from Excessive Amperage
    Power, Speaker & signal wires: 1/0 Power, 14Ga speaker from knukonceptz.com


    First, I started assembling the fiberglass enclosure/amplifier rack. I removed the back row of seats and taped off and fiberglassed a tub in the area under the seat and ‘glassed it to a .75 MDF board to serve as the bottom of the enclosure:











    Then, I cut four rings from .75” MDF to mount the speakers using a router:







    Next, I cut the sides and back out of MDF:





    Then, I assembled the pieces with the rings & some bracing. I air-nailed & glued the sides & back onto the bottom plate, then hot glued the rings & bracing together. ( I wanted the bracing to come out after the fiberglass was hard):



    Next, I stretched a really stretchy fabric I bought from a fabric store, and stapled around the bottom with an air stapler to create the final shape:



    Then mixed up some fiberglass resin & catalyst then “painted” the fabric, ensuring the material was thoroughly soaked with resin. When it cured, I was left with a hard shell:

    WORKLOG

    Asus P5N73-AN Mobo/Celeron E1400 2Ghz Dual Core CPU/2Gb GEIL PC3200/120GB HDD/DSATX PS/8" Phylon TS
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  2. #2
    Maximum Bitrate Snootch's Avatar
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    Once this was done, I laid 4-5 layers of fiberglass matt over the entire shape to build up the thickness, ensuring no air bubbles were trapped between layers. This built up the box into a thick and hard fiberglass shell:





    Next came the body filler. I used PPG body filler to “frost” the box like a cake and fill any low spots:





    Once the filler cured, I sanded it down using a die grinder with a sanding attachment:





    Filled and sanded several more times until the surface was smooth:



    Next up, I painted the entire box with resin and sprinkled it with sand to get a bumpy texture. Once it hardened, I sanded the top of the texture down with the sander:





    Next, I painted it using a flat color-matched urethane paint. (I had the paint store mix it using a plastic piece from the truck as reference) and applied 4 coats over two days:





    After the paint was dry, I poured a “milkshake” mix of fiberglass resin and body filler into the box and sloshed it around inside to coat the interior and fill any pinholes in the fiberglass that remain. When fiberglassing a sub box, this is important to achieve a tight seal, and ensure there are no air leaks:



    After the “milkshake was cured, I stuffed the box with polyfill to reduce any standing waves inside the enclosure, and ran the wiring inside the box with the 14Ga speaker wire:

    WORKLOG

    Asus P5N73-AN Mobo/Celeron E1400 2Ghz Dual Core CPU/2Gb GEIL PC3200/120GB HDD/DSATX PS/8" Phylon TS
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  3. #3
    Maximum Bitrate Snootch's Avatar
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    Mounted the woofers using coarse screws:



    Then mounted the JL crossovers:



    Then the amplifier:



    And wired the power for the amp to the stinger capacitor, and mounted it on the front of the box:



    Now that the box is done, I ran all new speaker wire and installed the JL speakers, replacing the crappy factory 5 X 7”s:





    I installed the sub level controller (comes with the amp) in the center console, right below the A/C controls for easy access. The Griffin powermate is just behind it"





    I also ran an extra USB cable into the glovebox so the owner can update his music collection, or plug in a keyboard.
    Finally, the part you’ve been waiting for, the PC. I mounted it along with the Carnetix power supply under the passenger seat. (I should of taken this pic after I bundled + zip-tied the wires neatly):





    The daylight readable screen is mounted into the dash using a modified double-din dash kit:



    And here it is running Centrafuse. (I don’t remember where I got the white “clean” skin from, if you want it, search the MP3car.com forums or the Centrafuse forums for it. I may be getting rid of it, depending on what the owner thinks):



    I forgot to take a pic of the box in the back of the truck (and it’s raining now) but I will update this post.
    WORKLOG

    Asus P5N73-AN Mobo/Celeron E1400 2Ghz Dual Core CPU/2Gb GEIL PC3200/120GB HDD/DSATX PS/8" Phylon TS
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  4. #4
    Maximum Bitrate Snootch's Avatar
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    UPDATE:

    It's a nice day out, so i'm posting finished pics:



    Here's the finished system in the back:

    WORKLOG

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  5. #5
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    I'm so jealous of people that do fiberglass work
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  6. #6
    Maximum Bitrate Snootch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonicxtacy02 View Post
    I'm so jealous of people that do fiberglass work
    It 'aint that hard, just 5+ gallons of trial and error. And a bunch of reading tutorials on the internet.
    WORKLOG

    Asus P5N73-AN Mobo/Celeron E1400 2Ghz Dual Core CPU/2Gb GEIL PC3200/120GB HDD/DSATX PS/8" Phylon TS
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  7. #7
    Who am I? HiJackZX1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonicxtacy02 View Post
    I'm so jealous of people that do fiberglass work
    Me too!

    Question though for Snootch, did you delete the 3 rd row seat? I could never do that!
    Nirwana Project, the Android/Win 7 hybrid system!

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  8. #8
    Maximum Bitrate Snootch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HiJackZX1 View Post
    Me too!

    Question though for Snootch, did you delete the 3 rd row seat? I could never do that!
    Sure did. I asked the owner, cause it was my first choice to put a sub enclosure, and he said "It's a SUV, not a school bus". So I took the seats out. they're sitting in his garage right now. If he needed the seats back, or to take out the system, he just needs to disconnect 8 speaker wires, 1 remote turn-on wire, and two 1/0 gauge wires, un-bolt the box from the truck from inside the box, and lift it out.
    WORKLOG

    Asus P5N73-AN Mobo/Celeron E1400 2Ghz Dual Core CPU/2Gb GEIL PC3200/120GB HDD/DSATX PS/8" Phylon TS
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  9. #9
    Mod - iPad Forums RipplingHurst's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonicxtacy02 View Post
    I'm so jealous of people that do fiberglass work
    +1 !!!

    Nice work! I'm not too sure about the rough finish though, but it's different from the glossy fiberglass work I'm used to see.

    That CF Skin is the white skin, you can find it on CF forums. Very cool inversed skin for the CF standard dark skin.

  10. #10
    Who am I? HiJackZX1's Avatar
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    Im the opposite.... I bought my SUV for all the seats. I will say if I did have the third row removed, I could have used the space for my Car PC. Right now i had to build everything like a building, going up, lol.
    Nirwana Project, the Android/Win 7 hybrid system!

    1X Ainol Novo Flame Tab
    4X MK808b
    3x Perixx Touchpads
    3x 7 inch Screens
    1X 7 inch motorized Screen
    1x Win 7 PC

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