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Thread: TFCommanderBob's 2010 Corolla S CarPC

  1. #21
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    Case

    Past

    I've done a bit of work on my PC case. I drilled out the rivets holding in the motherboard tray, and then sliced it up using straight ~3" jaw tin snips from Lowes (15$). I wanted to use a dremel for the work, but I've been having difficulties. I need to purchase a new one, as the old battery one is junk. I found a pretty old one in my dad's tools, and took it back with me. It works, but after cutting through about half the length of the tray it began smoking. Time for a new one.

    The unfortunate part of tin snips is it warps the metal on either side, so no piece will come out perfectly straight after a trim. So my tray has some bends in it, and the cuts down the sides are pretty rough and wavy.

    I drilled holes for the DSATX. I don't have any way to thread the holes, so I stuck standoffs in the tray and glued the bottoms. I also made crude little L brackets out of a piece of the excess tray to mount the hard drive. I smushed each component as close together as possible on the tray so that I have maximum flexibility in placement of the tray inside the case. It looks like I'll have a decent channel on the side for extra wiring, and I drilled holes in the back for the vin/gnd/acc cables to pass through the bottom of the case. In this manner, nothing impedes the lid from swinging open.

    I decided to set the motherboard back into the case rather than use the io panel to flush it to the side. It will give greater protection for the connections, and reduce overall width.

    I spoke with David's dad Bill, he seemed willing to help me fabricate a full metal case. He has the tools (bending brake, etc) to build a nice one, so I'll probably team up with him and make a great case later on. This has been a good experience though, and taught me what I wanted the case to look like and how to set everything up, and can function as a temporary case until we start that. The only thing I haven't done is secure the tray to the bottom, and put in a grill for CPU fan. I think instead I'll just pressure fit it with a thin piece between the top of the cpu fan and the lid, which are now 1/4" apart.

    Future

    I have to take my car in to the shop for a couple days, so I wont be able to start the sub box yet. But I can start shaping the PVC pods and I can try cutting out the dash frame to see if I can fit the whole screen casing into the faceplate. I'll post some pictures up of the "crude case" as it shall from now on be named.

    I received a great Weller Soldering Iron for Christmas. Because of that, I decided I want to custom make my RCA wiring! It will be great soldering practice, plus the RCAs that I ordered were pretty thick and inflexible, and the 3.5mm connectors were too wide. I'm filling up a cart over at www.Markertek.com with RCA ends, 3.5mm ends, slim star-quad wiring, shrink tubing, etc. Doing stuff like this is why I enjoy this project, and why I could never just buy the prebuilt product and have someone else install.

    I need to call up DCCA to cancel my order on Monday, and repurchase somewhere else. I gave them a month, it is no longer worth the $15 saved. I'm making considerations to instead get a decent eq/preamp, but i'll probably stick with the JL volume knobs given the 2 birds/1 stone idea. I still never received either refund from ATW or eD. I just found a phone number to ATW in my bank account transaction, so I'm calling it to complain (their number is not on their website, nor anywhere else.)

    There is a good chance that I will tear the car apart on either Wednesday or Friday and install my audio stuff so that all the difficult wiring (speaker wire through door jambs, ugh) is done. I think it would be a multi-day install trying to do the audio/pc at the same time, and while it would be more time effective (no pulling panels or seats multiple times) it would further postpone my install as I am not quite done with the PC but have all the audio pieces just sitting. I can run my mp3 player as a source straight to the amp until I'm ready for the rest.

  2. #22
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    A quick update

    I haven't posted in a bit, mainly because I've been hard at work on my project! I'm exhausted! I've been working on installing all the audio into the car. I've only ever installed speakers in my old car, and I did that with help, so this is a huge and scary undertaking for me.

    I started by ripping apart my rear deck. It was a little ridiculous- 8 panels (some easy, some hard) had to come off before I could actually pull out the rear deck to access the 6x9 speakers. I removed the old speakers (which are insanely light) and put in my polk 6x9's after putting some foam gasket tape on which I purchased at parts-express. I should have bought adapters for them so that I could remount in the original holes, but I didn't know I'd need them till I dug in, so I made do with what I had. I couldn't put new screws in because it was too close to the rear windshield to get a drill in. Instead, I put a zip tie through each hole- from the underside through the original hole and up through the speaker bracket, and back down through the same hole. It was a bit crude, but it honestly feels held down about 90% of using screws, and cost me nothing (vs 10+ for adapters).

    I spent HOURS trying to get the 4AWG power wire through the firewall, and figure out where was best/easiest. I only had a small amount of it (got it free as an employee of CC as we went under) so I decided not to go over to the passenger side, though it might have been easier to go through. I ended up having to cut a zip tie off a gasket all the way at the firewall and run it through the gasket with the wiring for the main fuse box. I straightened a coat hanger and punched it though the other side of the gasket, and pulled the wire through- it sounds straight forward and easy, but it all took forever due to the limited mobility on both sides (came through above pedals on driver side, behind motor/airbox/etc engine side).

    Then I tackled the front. I also spent a crazy amount of time running heavy speaker wire through the door jamb gasket. I had to use the coat hanger method again, but it is soooo hard to push it down the gasket tube, and just as hard when it is 2x larger pulling the speaker wire back through. There was a hole on both sides to go through. It did eventually work, but I was very frustrated/tired by that time.

    I pulled off each door panel, and found the front speakers were RIVETED to the door. I had to drill out the rivets, and then put my speakers on the doors. The rivets were a pain because they mainly spun, and took a quite a bit of pressure/angle changes to get them out. Once again, adapters would have been nice, but I put self-drilling screws through and it worked out great to mount the speakers. I wouldn't buy the adapters for the front but would definitely get them for the back, if I had a mulligan of course.

    I glued the crossovers to the doors. The panels still went on ok, but there was nowhere "good" to put them, and I didn't want to glue them to the interior panel because it would make taking it on and off a major pain. I think there might be a little pressure on them but it is hard to tell.

    Right now all my panels are off but the doors. I'll have to take them off again to fix up some wiring, but I needed to move the car out of the garage for the night for someone else to use it. I have speaker wire for each speaker running to the location for the amp (under the driver seat) and the power wire headed there too.




    Other news, I am able to fit the tweeter into the door sails afterall! I've spent some time sanding down PVC for pods for them, but after a 2nd check with a more fabrication oriented mindset, I found that I could cut all the tabs out from the old tweeter mount and there was JUST enough room for the new one. It literally touches on each side, but it fits. That made life much easier and keeps the stock look! Now if only the touch screen would be that easy.


    I need to wire a ground for the amp, and I need to tap into the amp remote wire behind the radio. Then I'll be able to test everything out! I'm not going to install the computer for a little while yet, because it isn't ready. But I wanted to get the audio in so it wouldn't be a 5 day install


    I'm not good at this car installation and fabrication stuff, but I'm very happy so far. Pics of the install to come to spice this post up...

  3. #23
    MySQL Error soundman98's Avatar
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    i wish i had enough time to read all these build threads...

    for what you've posted pics of, it looks great!

    i know exactly what you went through with the speaker wire through the doors--i am positive that it only goes through after a few special, choice words, and grunting (i used the parts express 13x4 gauge--the cables are about the diameter of 0 ga...)

    i see you used to have a eclipse with the black paint cancer-- if you haven't sold it, there is a recent settlement that finally went through...

    good luck with the rest of the install!!

  4. #24
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    Wow, your post almost sent me off the deep end- until I saw what the settlement really is. I sold it for almost nothing at the end of September. "100-150$ cash, or partial reimbursement". Psshh. I had them offer 40% off at a dealership and turned it down because it still would have cost me $1500 for their problem. I thought eventually they would make up for their mistake. They should be repainting that junk for free, any other owner gets to have a car with nice paint and pay nothing for it, just not the owner of a black car. I lost so much money just because of that paint job. O well hah.

    I don't know if I could have pulled something larger through, not without at least another 40min per door. I'm wiring with monster home theater cabling, because I had wayyy too much lying around to buy more speaker wire. Now I can safely invest in more though

  5. #25
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    Ok! So I was long overdue for an update, but here is where I stand, with the pictures.

    I've got the amp and power distro installed, all 4 speakers installed and wired, and a wire running back for where my sub will go. I left the amp and distro block loose for now and left a little extra wire so i can pull out the amp and make adjustments on the crossover without having to take out the seat.

    I'm really impressed with the pdx-5, even with my mp3 player it sounds pretty darn good. I have no ground problems, so that is a major plus! My last install had alternator whine which I never got rid of. Unfortunately, for now I just have a hole in my dash where there once was a radio, and I can only play 2 speakers at at time because I don't have rca splitters, only 1/8"-rca Ys.

    Wires up the rear driverside footwell:


    up the seatback:


    to the rear speakers:


    Longshot of speaker wires from amp to trunk along footwell/doorseam:


    Where the sub wire currently exits:


    Where the power wire goes through the firewall in the engine bay. This guy took forever to get started, and had me scared of cutting into the main wiring:


    Power wire pokes thru at the drivers footwell under the steering column:


    And down the side:


    Amp with loose wiring:


    Amp with wiring cleaned up:


    Cloesup of Amp wiring:


    Distro and Groundpoint, normally it is grounded on the outside of the seat rail, but I was turning on the car with no seat... I sanded paint off of every surface, the metal wall, both sides of the seat bracket, even the bolt. I was really happy with the ground, it hides perfect with seat in and the plastic cover over it, which aren't pictured here:


    With the seat on but forward all the way, I use it back


    Amp underneath the seat and all the lights lit up, the distro has a voltage meter, kinda worthless but I picked it because it had both 4awg and 8awg holes


    And you cant see anything but the tip of the silver power wire, which I can shorten. Although this is taken from the perspective of a 2yr old, soooo yeah, its all hidden:

  6. #26
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    Some good news, I've resumed my project for the season. It had simply got too cold to do anything, but now that the temperature is over 60F I'm comfortable to work outside/ in the unheated garage. Also, I've created a DIY for www.ToyotaNation.com forums to remove the rear deck and access the rear speakers. It was a long process, and I've given detailed instructions through pictures/descriptions. They were nice enough to add it to their list of DIY stickies for the 10th gen Corolla.

    I've begun taking a mold of the left corner of my trunk using fiberglass. This will be the housing for my subwoofer. I've never worked with fiberglass before, so I'm just going by what I've seen and read online, and learned from Nexson of course. First I masked off the area with overlapping masking tape, then for added precaution I put a layer of aluminum foil down, and put newspaper over most of the trunk interior/bumper lip to avoid resin drips on the carpet. I sprayed the foil with spray adhesive and stuck ~3" fiberglass squares to the foil in a rough overlapping pattern, and then dabbed resin onto it. After one layer I took the mold out and worked on it in the grass.

    I did three layers, 1 at a time, with about 1 1/2 hrs between each. I can probably do another two sets of 2 layers in a row (drying time after 2 layers are on) and call the backing done. It looks pretty decent and is becoming relatively solid. There are some tiny air bubbles which are probably a result of my inexperience, but the general shape is there and I think I smoothed over the large bubbles as they appeared. I might not have used quite enough hardener in my 3rd layer, because after 2 hours it was still tacky- it could also have been that the temperature dropped 20* and the sun went down so it is curing slower. It will have a few days until I can pick it up again.


    The only thing I'm not sure of is how to attach an MDF baffle to the actual fiberglass structure. I do know that I plan on making a flat plate for the face with a larger circle cut out, and a 2nd board on the inside for the sub to mount to. This way the sub will be recessed. I'll use the cutout circle to fashion a ring which I'll cover in black speaker grill and insert to cover the sub and give a hopefully cleaner look. The box will be covered in charcoal carpeting to match the interior, and I'm using gold banana plugs and gold terminals to connect with the speaker wire.

  7. #27
    Who am I? HiJackZX1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFCommanderBob View Post
    Merry Christmas from Tania, Chris, Miles, and Jazz!

    Your cats are looking like, what the h3ll are these humans doing! Its the end of us all! Well its good to see you guys are humorous.

    Love the install, I am the same with with audio. I wanted 7.1 surround sound in my truck so bad. Problem was finding a place for the amps. I decided to loose some trunk space for the amps and additional computers. Cant wait to see your install finished.
    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

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZX1Cruizer View Post
    Your cats are looking like, what the h3ll are these humans doing! Its the end of us all! Well its good to see you guys are humorous.
    Hah, We had the humor- they were just mad...

    Here are some pics of the sub enclosure. Its my first time working with this stuff, and I'm sure it shows!












    It wasn't too hard of a process. The enclosure itself is already pretty darn strong, even for only 3 layers. The coloring is not very uniform (ignoring the aluminum which is still stuck to the back) leading me to believe I did a somewhat poor job saturating all of the fibers, but hey. Trial #1. Now I just gotta buy some MDF and try my hand at making a recessed sub faceplate and then attaching that to the mold. Does anyone know how to physically calculate how much airspace I'll have? I'm debating on how far out to put my faceplate, since I extended the enclosure glass out extra far to have flexibility. Mathematically its basically impossible (for me) since none of my dimensions are even. I'd also have to account for woofer displacement. I only need .3 feet of airspace for this low-profile sub. Should I just assume I have enough?

  9. #29
    Who am I? HiJackZX1's Avatar
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    Looking good. Im sure if I did it, it would look like pure cr@p. i was going to try to make an enclosure for my C-Pillars and in the end I didnt want to mess them up. Fiberglassing and me dont get along.
    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

  10. #30
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    So with some warm and dry weather on a day that I have off, I'm digging back in. Over the week I spent some time debating and finally decided that I'd try fiberglassing the 705TSV to the dash piece. So I bit the bullet and took it apart, voiding my warranty. As far as I know I got it apart without damaging anything. It wasn't too difficult. Today my goal is to put the final sanding into the dash piece so that the LCD frame will fit in correctly, and then glue it in place with CyanoAcrylate (super glue). I'd also like to put a layer of resin on the outside of my sub enclosure to get a few strands which didn't get full saturation, and add another layer of glass on the inside when the outside is sufficiently dry. Busy day! I'll attempt to take pictures of the project throughout the day...


    Depending on how things go, I might add a layer of Duraglas to the touchscreen frame. It is fiberglass stranded filler, which should work well to fill in the major gaps and smooth things out. I'll need to buy some rage or bondo for a top coat before I go about primer and paint, though at my slow pace it will be a few weeks . Most of my april weekends are shot, so I'm counting on a few Fridays to get some stuff done.

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