grayvader's 2005 Ford F150 Supercrew FX4 -- Pride of the Empire :)
Well, I've been trolling the forums for nearly 2 years (and even longer) and I started a real car'puter last February... Obviously I've only worked on it off and one -- mainly in big bursts. Finally, though, I've had another big burst and I'm close to actually installing it. Lot's of things delayed my install... mainly, though, I've been trying to get it too perfect before installing it. I'm at the point where SW should be the biggest "imperfection" so I should be able to tweak while in the truck. As I type, I'll try to capture where I am and where I hope to get to...
iBase MB899 i945 chipset based motherboard in a handmade aluminum chassis (more to follow in my worklog)
2.5g Core Duo
120g 2.5" SATA HDD
custom 8.4 LCD with transflective enhancement
slot load slim cd/dvd RW
intel 802.11bg mini pci wireless card
BU353 GPS receiver
Velleman K8055 i/o board (mainly for steering wheel control interface)
Streedeck (but who knows what I'll end up with for a front end when it's all said and done)
SiLabs USB RDS radio reference design:
Clarion DVC920/DVH940 digital processor connected to PC via Toslink SPDIF:
5ch amp (this piece actually keeps changing)
center channel infinity (one day?) driven off a tripath based amp at the speaker
4 infinity speakers and a 10" sub (under the back seat)
Here's a teaser to explain the title :)
What to do with the Clarion DVC920 controller?
So, now I had a decent opening for the display. Mow I needed somwhere to mount the DVC920 -- it's the little controller that interfaces to the actual DSP box that does the dolby decode (and other digital conversion). It basically controls fade/balance/volume and a couple other sound field tweaks.
Anyway, I digress. You can find more about the Clarion stuff here:
So, I decided to use the area of the dash bezel that had previously had just a lighter. It's the area at the bottom you can see in my first post of the stock bezel.
Not too many in process shots of what I did, but everything fit pretty well after I filled in the rounded edges with some spare plastic and poxy weld and of course, sanded the crap out of the bottom part of the opening.
First pic is the rough shot -- i was using primer and sanding a lot. word to the wise -- make sure your primer and top coat are compatible. Turns out SEM top coat and Krylon plastic primer are not. I ordered some SEM primer after that fiasco.
Second shot -- the whole bezel in Krylon primer. I had to sand all that crap off at least a couple times :)
Third shot is of the bezel after all the painting issues had been solved. It's pretty much done -- I just have to mount the screen.
Final result of bezel work (but not in the truck)
Here's what the bezel looks like with my LCD installed. I had to fab us some brackets on the back side of the bezel -- not much to look at but gets the job done. There are also 2 screws that take advantage of the holes in the lcd. Also used poxy weld to make little mount plates that i drilled to screw into.
The picture even shows off the nice fingerprints and smudges that will be the bane of my whole install. :violin:
Oh, and the left upper side of the opening looks a bit off. In practice, i hope it doesn't bother me too much or I'll have to build it up and sand like hell again :) That can come MUCH l8r.
Hopefully in the near future I'll have the other parts in it. Like AC controls.
What to put in all that room?
So, with all that room, I figure -- just put the PC in there.
I figured the mini-ITX form factor was the way to go so I assumed that FF for all my measurements.
The 6.5" width of an ITX board is just a bit more narrow than the opening in the truck.
I took a bunch of measurements and figured in the min size for all the components I wanted.
Now, the ashtray opening (no longer an ashtray since the Kenwood music keg install) seemed the perfect area for the PC to be accessed. I figured the height of the opening and decided that would be the front -- not enough volume when that height and width and depth were calculated so i figured -- make it L shaped. Here we go with what I started and ended with as I made some foam board models. Started with an L, ended at a T shape: