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Thread: Kegobeer's 1999 Mercury Grand Marquis Build

  1. #41
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    That last picture makes the screen look pretty glossy/glary, imagine it's so much better when on. Good job on the cupholder modifications! Bet you can't wait till that volume knob is wired up!
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  2. #42
    Maximum Bitrate kegobeer's Avatar
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    Yeah, the screen looks better when it's powered up and there isn't a camera flash illuminating it. Plus, I took that from the back seat at a low angle, which makes the glare look worse. Even though it's just the high brightness 669 with just the glare/protector that Chris includes with all of the touchscreens, it does a good job in direct sunlight. Being completely recessed also helps.

    I am really looking forward to wiring up the volume knob. CF (and RR) onscreen volume controls are just too slow for me - I prefer a manual control knob for my volume!
    Last edited by kegobeer; 08-11-2011 at 08:01 PM.
    1999 Mercury Grand Marquis GS with: ASRock E350M1 w/4GB RAM, 80GB Intel SSD, Opus DCX3.120, Visteon HD Radio + HDR-USB, PL-18N wifi, OBDLink Scan Tool, BTA6210 BT, BU-353, Win 7 Ultimate, CF 4.0, Alpine MRP-F240 + MRP-T220, RF Punch 1572s, Kicker 8" Comp.

  3. #43
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    it seems like that knob is a little far away. nice job on making blend in though!

  4. #44
    Maximum Bitrate kegobeer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soundman98 View Post
    it seems like that knob is a little far away. nice job on making blend in though!
    From the driver's seat (or the passenger seat) I can get to the knob without leaning forward at all. It's closer than the touchscreen is, and easier to get to. My photos don't do a good job of conveying actual distances.
    1999 Mercury Grand Marquis GS with: ASRock E350M1 w/4GB RAM, 80GB Intel SSD, Opus DCX3.120, Visteon HD Radio + HDR-USB, PL-18N wifi, OBDLink Scan Tool, BTA6210 BT, BU-353, Win 7 Ultimate, CF 4.0, Alpine MRP-F240 + MRP-T220, RF Punch 1572s, Kicker 8" Comp.

  5. #45
    Maximum Bitrate kegobeer's Avatar
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    No carpc work for a couple of days, but I did upgrade my stock mufflers to Magnaflows!




    I've had those tips for a couple of years, but I finally decided to change mufflers to give it more of a rumble.
    Last edited by kegobeer; 08-14-2011 at 12:16 AM.
    1999 Mercury Grand Marquis GS with: ASRock E350M1 w/4GB RAM, 80GB Intel SSD, Opus DCX3.120, Visteon HD Radio + HDR-USB, PL-18N wifi, OBDLink Scan Tool, BTA6210 BT, BU-353, Win 7 Ultimate, CF 4.0, Alpine MRP-F240 + MRP-T220, RF Punch 1572s, Kicker 8" Comp.

  6. #46
    Maximum Bitrate kegobeer's Avatar
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    Day 9:

    Today I started tackling the trunk. I decided to mount everything vertically against the fuel tank. I took my measurements and made a rough cut to check for proper fit. I was off by 1/4 inch on the top and side because I took my measurements without the carpet in the trunk. I opted to keep the trunk carpet, so I would have the ability to remove everything and not have the trunk look like a disaster area.

    After making two adjustment cuts, I mounted a 1x2 along the top and the bottom to act as spacers so my cabling wouldn't be pinched behind the plywood. Plus, it also eliminated a slight warp the plywood had. I put it back into the trunk to make sure the piece still fit correctly.

    Next up was placing the equipment. That took a bit longer than I expected, but after about 15 minutes of moving things around I decided that my HD radio would go in the upper left, the USB DAC in the lower left, the pc and amp in the middle, and my power distribution blocks on the right. A few wood screws later and everything was temp mounted and ready for another fit check. The DAC is just taped to the plywood right now, until I have some time to fabricate a mounting plate for it. That should be done sometime this week.

    After that, I re-routed my wifi cables. I found three cables that were shorter than my previous ones (I have quite a few of those RG cables, luckily) and I ran them though the open parts of the trunk and secured them with a cable clamp right in the middle of the antennas. I still have to put another clamp to hold the four wires coming off the antennas, but I have to find a push type clamp that will fit in the hole that's already there. If I can't find one, I'll end up drilling another hole, but I'm hoping to avoid that if at all possible. I routed the wire loom down the hinge and then secured it with zip ties, then mounted them to the pc. I put in another clamp on the plywood to keep them from moving around and damaging the pc.

    Finally, I hooked everything up and tested the system. Everything worked as advertised. I'm going to drive it around for about a week to make sure nothing breaks or moves around. I have to order more 4GA cable for my ground cable, and I still have to install my Ram tough hub and route the USB cable and power cable, but most of the hardware installation is done.

    Later this week hopefully I'll install the tough hub and get that squared away.

    Thanks for reading.
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    1999 Mercury Grand Marquis GS with: ASRock E350M1 w/4GB RAM, 80GB Intel SSD, Opus DCX3.120, Visteon HD Radio + HDR-USB, PL-18N wifi, OBDLink Scan Tool, BTA6210 BT, BU-353, Win 7 Ultimate, CF 4.0, Alpine MRP-F240 + MRP-T220, RF Punch 1572s, Kicker 8" Comp.

  7. #47
    Constant Bitrate dna59's Avatar
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    I like ur attention to details. I gotta say those antennas wouldnt look good on much but i think on a crown vic/grand marquis it works. Actually i think they just look badass there.

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  8. #48
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    Thumbs up Looking good

    Damn I am so jealous. I been wanting to do that for years now. Thanks for telling me about your setup, I will probably start buying stuff to get this going.

  9. #49
    Maximum Bitrate kegobeer's Avatar
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    Day 10:

    Yesterday I installed my Ram Tough Hub. Installation was a snap, except of course for removing the rear seat so I could run the power and USB cables. I put it under the passenger seat, and I ran the power along the passenger side of the car to the trunk and connected it to the power and ground distro blocks, and I ran the USB cable under the carpet down the middle of the car (the transmission hump) and into the trunk. At first I had power but no USB connection, but that was because of my 10' USB cable I bought - the end was just a bit too big to fit into the smallish hole on the Ram. After a bit of whittling with my trusty X-Acto, it fit and the hub was operating as advertised.

    I still haven't finished the pc/amp mount. I have to tweak the locations a bit because I totally forgot about my JL Audio volume control, and right now there isn't really a place to put it. I'm waiting on some hurricane nuts (http://www.parts-express.com/pe/psho...umber=081-1080) to arrive, which I'll be using for the mounts instead of standard wood screws or machine screws with nuts on the back side of the amp. I also got a great deal on some Rockford Fosgate speakers, so I'll be installing them at the same time that I finish the amp rack. As much as I love working on the car, I do like to consolidate some projects so I'm not out in the Florida heat every single day. I'm also working on my microphone options. I have an Andrea Superbeam, which will probably be mounted on the A pillar on the driver's side (or very close to it on the headliner), but I'm also experimenting with using a BlueParrott Xpressway BT headset instead. If I can swing it, it would be nice to have the music on the speakers, but my phone calls would only be on the headset. Plus, the headset would mean no echo problems at all.

    That's it for now. Thanks for reading.
    1999 Mercury Grand Marquis GS with: ASRock E350M1 w/4GB RAM, 80GB Intel SSD, Opus DCX3.120, Visteon HD Radio + HDR-USB, PL-18N wifi, OBDLink Scan Tool, BTA6210 BT, BU-353, Win 7 Ultimate, CF 4.0, Alpine MRP-F240 + MRP-T220, RF Punch 1572s, Kicker 8" Comp.

  10. #50
    Maximum Bitrate kegobeer's Avatar
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    Day 11:

    I've been having motherboard/display problems that have resulted in some nasty hibernation issues and occasional BSODs, so I still haven't made the amp rack yet. I did buy the plywood and I'm ready to start building, but that will wait until the computer is fixed. I swapped out my 2GB for some new Kingston 4GB RAM, and so far I haven't had any problems, but I'm going to give it a few days before I am satisfied. I also bought an ASRock E350M1 mini-itx motherboard and some RAM, so there will probably be an upgrade in the next week or so, when the parts show up at the house. I'm really interested to see how it performs compared to the Intel Atom boards I've had in the car.

    Since my last post I've been unhappy with the location of my Ram hub. It's a royal pita to get to it, so I decided to relocate it to the glove compartment. I don't really use it much (other than to store my Lenovo keyboard), so I figured that would be the best place to put it.

    The glove compartment is held in by three small screws, and they are probably the only ones on this car that aren't metric. I would love for Ford to use all metric or all standard, instead of mixing them up. I guess they did it to keep me on my toes. Once it was removed, I made a cardboard template of the hub so I could get the placement correct, then I drilled the screw holes. I used a 1" hole saw to make the opening for the cables, which I had to widen a bit as the power cable was rubbing against the hole. Installation of the hub was straightforward and very easy (but I'm missing one screw and nut combo, that's why there's only three holding the hub in place). I routed the cables through the dash and re-installed the glove compartment, then checked for cable movement while opening and closing the glove box. I used a small piece of 3M heavy duty double sided tape to hold the USB repeater cable against the bottom of the glove box (I'm using a 16' USB 2.0 active repeater cable from the carpc, and a 6" usb cable from the hub to the repeater). Everything looks good and solid, but I'll know more after a few days of driving around in our lovely Florida heat. Unfortunately I wasn't able to run the power and USB cables to the trunk, since we're in the middle of a lot of rain from tropical storm Lee. I should get to that early this week.

    That's it for now. Thanks for reading.
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    Last edited by kegobeer; 09-04-2011 at 12:40 PM.
    1999 Mercury Grand Marquis GS with: ASRock E350M1 w/4GB RAM, 80GB Intel SSD, Opus DCX3.120, Visteon HD Radio + HDR-USB, PL-18N wifi, OBDLink Scan Tool, BTA6210 BT, BU-353, Win 7 Ultimate, CF 4.0, Alpine MRP-F240 + MRP-T220, RF Punch 1572s, Kicker 8" Comp.

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