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Thread: And so it continues... 2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser Touring Edition

  1. #21
    Sheepdog rdholtz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by monkeyracer View Post
    Now though, the top where the clock was looks a little blank, but I think that it looks nice, I'm just so used to the clock being there.
    The engineer in me thinks it might be interesting to slip a couple of USB ports in that space. But, from a design standpoint, blank space is good.

    It looks great as is; after you paint it, it'll look better than the OEM version.

    And, by the way, big kudos to you for all the help you've been providing on other people's projects. Good stuff.
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  2. #22
    Maximum Bitrate galvitron's Avatar
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    Nice fab!

    I like that USB idea mentioned above but it may be too late...
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  3. #23
    Wants to make it harder monkeyracer's Avatar
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    There are some usb ports and possibly an SD reader going into the switch panel below the screen. I plan to rarely use them, but I'm going to agree with rdholtz; blank space is good. Sometimes these projects can get too cluttered and that is sort of how I feel now that I look at the OEM piece. The clock really looks out of place, like it was thrown in just to look cool. I'll have a clock on the computer, the deck and of course my wrist, so there's no need for yet another one on the dash bezel.

    There was a short time I thought about making some kind of backlit logo or maybe just a masked logo, but I think it would look cheesy. There's already a logo on the passenger airbag bezel, so it would be unnecessary.

    The switch bezel has already been dismantled and it's just a matter of measuring right and making the cuts. I bought a spare on ebay so that I would still have my hazard switch in the meantime. I had to shave the top of the switch panel, since the screen bezel is right up against it.


    switch panel



    Right blank removed



    Excess plastic removed



    Back of the blank with extra plastic removed



    USB hub and SD reader without casing, this will go in the blank on the right.

    The blank on the left has some of the PCB for the switches behind it, so this may end up as the valet switch or something. I don't know yet.
    2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser TE
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  4. #24
    Wants to make it harder monkeyracer's Avatar
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    Little more progress before the holiday weekend:

    I decided I didn't want to use the 4 port usb hub on the piece. There's never going to be a time when I would need that many ports right there. I will just use two chopped up extension cables instead.



    This will get a thin layer of filler and then some black satin krylon fusion, to hopefully match the other buttons.



    This pic shows where I shaved down the top side of the mounts to fit under the screen, I also removed some more plastic since I was trying to shoehorn the hub and the SD reader in there. It still was too big for both, so that's another reason I'm going with the two extensions.

    A guy I work with has a laptop with a broken screen that he's willing to sell for a reasonable price, but I never really thought about using a laptop since I had the old desktop.

    I've searched, but can't find a definitive answer, but the general reasoning is that I can power the laptop with an auto adapter that is hard wired to the battery, or to my inverter that will be hard wired to the battery, the key point in all the threads is not to use the cig lighter. I'm going to research that a little more though.
    I did see some threads about how to get it to power on with the car using a simple relay, but I wanted to try and find more info about getting it to suspend when I turn the car off. Is that part as simple as something in the configuration for the laptop? (When I press the power button on my computer: -Stand By) Any info would be appreciated with that part of it.

    I guess I'm a little confused at some people that use power supplies for a desktop and plug them into a docking station, If the same can be done with a simple car adapter, why not? I might still get a basic power supply for the monitor, so it receives regulated voltage, but something simple would work just fine I think.

    I might just end up buying a desktop anyways if my coworker sells the laptop on craigslist for more than he offered me to buy it.
    2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser TE
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  5. #25
    Wants to make it harder monkeyracer's Avatar
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    I got the laptop from my coworker. Updated specs on the second post. I'm still trying to figure out the best way to power everything. I have the inverter, but it's power is too dirty for the screen, so I was looking at the carnetix p1900. I'm curious though, it will output 18V or 19V, but the power brick shows that the laptop is getting 18.5V.

    Is it ok to power the laptop half a volt high or low?

    I have been playing with the settings, and I've got it to sleep after a certain amount of time on battery power, but it won't work if RR is running for some reason. It seems that it needs to be idle for that amount of time to go into sleep mode. Is there a way to force it into sleep? If not, I think I might do something with the power button and some relays to get it to pulse the power button when power is removed from the p1900.

    I want the laptop to wake up from sleep mode when I start the car, and enter sleep mode between 10 seconds and 1 minute after I turn the car off.

    I will research more into powering the laptop and startup/shutdown. There's not a FAQ or sticky about it, unless I missed something. Any help with this would be appreciated.

    Edit: I sort of answered my own question:

    Quote Originally Posted by monkeyracer View Post
    So I think I may end up doing this:

    Battery 12V>Fuse>Relay (on switched 12V)>laptop car adapter>HP laptop>ground
    12V Switched>Auto Turn On Module>Laptop Power Button
    Battery 12V>Fuse>Opus POL (Dynamix Car adapter)>Dynamix screen>ground
    Battery 12V>Fuse>Relay (on switched 12V)>Power Inverter>PS2 (rarely connected)/USB Hub/Whatever else I might need to plug in.

    The three circuits will end up on the same fuse block, and then split off to the relay and the Opus and inverter. The screen will probably be wired with the car adapter it came with until I get the POL. The inverter will barely be used, other than to power the USB hub through it's USB port.

    Cost:
    Car Adapter - $13.99 + $10.95
    Auto Turn on Module - $35 + 7.64
    Total for now: $67.58, and another $34 plus shipping later for the Opus.
    2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser TE
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  6. #26
    Wants to make it harder monkeyracer's Avatar
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    update:

    I got the primer sprayed, and sanded, and then I sprayed some color. The dealer didn't have the satin silver, so I tried the next closest thing. The color was called stainless steel, but was really a darker color than I thought and it wasn't a consistent spray. There are some spots darker than others, and it didn't lay down flat, there's a strange texture on it.
    I decided to go back to the Satin River Rock color that I used first. I should have just kept with that color, I would have saved a lot of time. It's also supposed to become chip resistant after it fully cures, so I might as well have just kept that paint. No pics for now, but once I install the screen, I'll post some more.

    I don't think I'll beat my 1000th post for this, but I'm still pretty close to having it all done.
    2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser TE
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  7. #27
    Wants to make it harder monkeyracer's Avatar
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    ok, got some really good work done...



    I cut the hole on the back of the screen, and installed the hard drive fan, I'm hoping the aluminum frame that holds the fan will help to act as a heat sink too, but the fan should do most of the work.
    I installed the screen, and transferred over the vents. There is really not a whole lot of space back there. The screen fits right up against the vents on the top and the switch panel on the bottom.



    I also finished installing the USB ports, upside down, whooops! It's not a big deal though. Notice the scratches, they will be smoothed out soon. I also installed the SD reader and remote mounted the status LED. Then I hot glued everything in place. There's a whole mini-stick of glue back there, so it's not likely to go anywhere.

    I still need to mount the Deck in the lower pocket hole (which requires the bracket behind to go away) and wire it all up.
    I still need to purchase the auto turn on module, the relays, the fuse block, the wiring, the car adapter, some usb extensions, a 4 port USB PCMCIA card, I lost track, but more stuff...
    I still need to install the GPS puck, and finish setting up the laptop.

    I'm getting really close to finishing it, still a little work to go, but this is a pretty big benchmark in the install. I'm not going to finish by 1000 posts, but that's OK, I got this far, and that's fine.

    There is a tiny little imperfection on the driver's side of the bezel, a piece of dust in the paint, but that can be fixed later. Off for now.

    edit: also found ShutControl, since windows needs to be idle for the native standby to work, this program forces it into stand by after a set amount of time. Also, windows only has intervals starting at 1 minute, shut control can go as low as 1 second.

    I plan on installing the auto-turn on module and relays on the remote line on the deck. This way, if the radio is off, the computer is off as well. I want it this way because the car has a delay on the radio so that the radio stays on until a door is opened. So if I'm sitting somewhere, waiting for someone, I can still mess around with the PC, and when I open the door, the laptop enters standby (after a few seconds.) I can turn the deck off before going in to get my oil changed, and that will act as a valet switch of sorts (there will still be a valet switch for other reasons.)
    2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser TE
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    Fabrication...[---------X-] 90%
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  8. #28
    Wants to make it harder monkeyracer's Avatar
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    This is my 1000th post, and even though it's not complete yet, this serves as a good post for that benchmark. I installed the bezel, and ran the cables for testing.

    Here's an in car pics:

    (see attached, some wierdness with photobucket right now.)

    You can see the blemish on the drivers side of the screen bezel. Once the paint is finished curing, I will sand back down and apply another light coat. I might go with a more silver color, but that will be decided in the future. I really like the krylon fusion, and they have a satin silver, but it's a darker grey than I want, so I don't know.
    This pic is in full daylight, and there is definitely some glare, but I can still see all the text. I'm in the middle of working out 800x480 for this laptop, and once that's settled, the text will be even easier to read at the right resolution (rather than being stretched.) The pic shows my mAv1c skin, and I also have my hAv1c skin which is high contrast, and even easier to read.

    I'm not ready to have the thread moved to the SOYP section yet, since the laptop is just sitting on the passenger seat, and there are cables everywhere, and the deck isn't mounted well, and I don't have the turn-on module or the car adapter. I'm also having an issue with the touchscreen delaminating from the glass, and I saw the FAQ about how to fix it, but it happens when it gets hot, and I haven't hooked up the fan yet. If the fan can't keep it cool, there's no point in putting flame to the touch screen since it will just repeat itself.

    So in short, it's in, but it's not. More to update soon.
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    2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser TE
    Car PC Progress:
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    Fabrication...[---------X-] 90%
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  9. #29
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    Dude. That is what the kids these days call pure sex. Wish my bezel looked like that.

    Hard to tell if it'll look rice or not, but what do you think if you color matched that piece with your car?
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  10. #30
    Wants to make it harder monkeyracer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey-Z View Post
    ...but what do you think if you color matched that piece with your car?
    Quote Originally Posted by monkeyracer View Post
    ...the color is just a base layer, it will end up satin silver again, and maybe after I redo the seats it will be re-painted Marine Blue Pearl (body color) to match the other dash panels.
    I had thought about it. Right now it might look too "rice" as you put it, just because those panels are the only things that color in the interior, but once the seats are done (way down the road) this will get that color.

    Thanks for the compliment. I have a little finishing to do with it, but I am going to wait until I get the touch screen controller from dynamix before I take it all apart again.

    Your bezel looks nice, more stock than mine, and I like your amp racks. All my equip will be hidden to retain cargo space...
    2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser TE
    Car PC Progress:
    Planning.......[---------X-] 95%
    Parts...........[---------X-] 90%
    Fabrication...[---------X-] 90%
    RR Skin........[---------X-] 95%
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