I would love to meet those of you in the NYC area
I would love to meet those of you in the NYC area
Well, despite the 2010 blizzard, the Macry and I made it out okay. I decided to finally upgrade some things to my car. The front will be next, and hopefully all will be ready for September's AFKfest!
I will post a little later of what upgrades I've done, look forward to do, and all status updates. Soon, I will finish my tweaking mode, and this will be ready for show!!!
With a little extra time on my hands, I have finally gotten around to rewiring the audio cabling in the Macry. Two additions that I managed to acquire in the last year are a Rockford Fosgate subwoofer, and an additional mono amp to power it. I've browsed around the forums, checked Crutchfield.com, listened to all the car-audio-know-it-alls at my job, and decided that this route is the best one to go.
On a side note, if you can invest a little in LED light conversion for your vehicle, I highly recommend it. The pure white (or blue) lights I have now outdo those standard bulbs that used to be there. They are so much better...
Give me until late April to post the results.
Tis the month before the AFKfest...
And I thought I'd post some thoughts up here!
I was originally going to shoot a 3 minute video of the latest updates to my car. But in mid stride, I was researching some audio setups in other 2007 Camrys. A half hour into it, I find this photo:
UPDATE: The original image is gone, so I googled Chris Ott's Camry. The focus is on the first 5 pics at the top!
The corresponding article can be found here. The idea was so downright ingenious, I got vexed that I didn't think of it myself! A molded piece, that makes the MACry install more uniform. Though this will drastically change the OEM stock look of my car (especially if done right!), it is a very cool looking, and secure, change.
Elsewhere, I have personally installed my rear view camera, and it's up and running.
I am attempting to update my OS to OS X Lion. I paid my $32.65, and started downloading using hotspot WiFi. After a slow hour of reaching 5%, I went and used my Mifi. After another hour of hitting 25%, I went to the Apple Store with my USB drive, figuring I was gonna download it that way. "Sorry Charlie, you will either have to bring the computer here and use our wifi, or download it at home using a wired connection." (No, that is not how the Genius said it to me; I am paraphrasing...)
Instead of dragging my mini (with no screen) to the Apple Store, I brought it home. I plugged in the AC outlet, pressed the button, and nothing came on!! At first, I thought it was the adapter; so I took the still in plastic wrap adapter that came with my most recent Mac Mini purchase. No avail. Then I plugged in the old adapter. No can do. At that point, I just knew it was the mac mini. But when I brought it back to the car and plugged everything back in, it came on without so much as a hiccup!! So until I figure out why, the only way I can get Lion in my Mac is through the Mi/Wifi networks. Awesome...
I am replacing Apple's wireless keyboard with the Logitech Dinovo Mini; not that Apple's keyboard isn't cutting it. I just want to use that for my iPad, and in turn have a smaller keyboard to operate my car's computer.
Okay, so I will sit and do the vid. Promise...
...And my brother and I decided to buckle down and dress up the car for Maryland. One of things we wanted to accomplish is to address the wiring situation. Having red and black (instead of just two black) wires for power and ground was a start. Another thing was to upgrade the switches that power on the mini and the regulator into something a little more "sophisticated."
A major issue I had recently was that I needed to pre-maturely replace a Duralast yellow top battery. It had not been three years yet, and I already was stranded next to a McDonalds. No fun.
The friend that eventually drove me around to get the replacement insists that I have to take some pressure off the main battery. Taking his recommendation seriously, I inquired about some possible remedies with some car-audio-heads at my job. One reminded me that having two amplifiers will always be an issue, and I should just get a 5-channel amp to call it a day. Another reminded me that should anything go wrong with the 5-ch amp, I will have no sound until I buy a replacement. His thing was to get something to help support the main battery... so long as it was not a capacitor!
So I checked out the mp3car.com forums (naturally:)), and read up on @OldSpark's secondary battery and relay posts. "I think I can dig that," I thought...
Fast forward to the day after Hurricane Irene passed. I got some $$ together, and some schematics for how this thing is going to come out. I hope all this works by Friday!! :pray:
I sanded. He cemented. I sanded some more. And next thing we knew...
It was one! One major step towards a great finish!! Hopefully, if & when I decide to upgrade to an 8" HDMI screen, then it will not require much.
The guts of the MACry spilled all over the place. We had to get some order restored...
The secondary battery. Big shout-out and thanks to @Zoltan for the assist!
The test run. Once painted, the panel will look like it actually belongs there.
Your project is coming along. Can't wait to see the result.
So where are you putting the extra battery? Are you painting the dash or putting the wood grain back?
Before I explain this pic, if you ever get one Craftsman tool a day in your life, the right angle Nextec driver is an awesome piece of equipment!! Once charged, this gem can do a lot for $100. Apparently, that includes drilling with regular and spade bits! That said, with slow speed, I was able to bore a hole throw the plastic for my buttons...
... which fit like a glove! Even with the right hole (the first one we did) not coming out as better as the left hole, both buttons went in snugly. Now, if I can get some revelation on the wiring of these buttons, I'm on my way!
The Rust-Oleum Textured Metallic spray paint.
I am aware of the other options (wood grain, mother-of-pearl-gray, white, black, to name a few.) But I fell in love when I saw it; and felt it was a proper fit. When I brought it in for my second test run, even my brother was sold on it. Notice the rectangular hole has finally found its purpose: the USB connections came from Malaysia a lot sooner than expected...
The question of secondary battery placement came up. In the process, I thought of a possible place based on conversations with @Zoltan. In the midst of that, I lost some skin from my arm (it was either 26lbs pressing it off, or the "sulfuric acid") and was not a happy camper for about an hour...
As far as the final choice, let's just say I had to park my car at the Home Depot at the Gateway Mall, take out my backseat from my car, and run some 4AWG wire...
One last look at our final product. I ended up using some putty and surrounded the USB panel with it, then sanding it off for a somewhat even finish. Repainted that area again (to emphasize the ports, at least that was the idea), and a day later, I am one step closer to fin!
More to come...
So, I will be driving to Baltimore in a few hours with the MACry not at full speed. Again.
All this rain in the tri-state area is making things a bit difficult to work on with no garage at my disposal. And I am a relay connection, and a compartment dremelling away!!
To Baltimore; And Back
So the 4 hour drive started a little late, and I ended up arriving a hour into the event. While it was not the same atmosphere as it was last year, it was an impressive event nonetheless.
As for the MACry, well the LED momentary push buttons work; but may be wired wrong, because they are ALWAYS lit. Even now.
When we connected the Carnetix regulator, it turned on. And it stayed on the whole trip. Hmm.
It appeared that the secondary battery started getting charge, because when I started the trip back home, the main battery stalled. My brother and I checked the connections in the trunk; and the one of the grounds disconnected. A Pep Boys trip later, one of the tires was losing air. A gas trip later, the battery stalled again. It was just a very trying Saturday...
The connections eventually were all reinforced, and it appears the secondary battery got some juice during the entire near 5-hour journey back to New York. But during that journey, the Mac Mini would not come on.
It could simply be that it was not getting enough juice. It could be that the mini's logic board might have failed. Somehow this week, I will find this out. If it works, glory hallelujah! If not, I can only imagine which Mini I buy next...