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Thread: Acura/Honda Integra 1990 (lots of pics + more to come)

  1. #1
    Low Bitrate deanthom's Avatar
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    Acura/Honda Integra 1990 (lots of pics + more to come)

    OK, I’ve learnt a lot and got heaps of ideas by browsing this forum, so I thought I'd give something back and show how I am going about installing my new CarPC into my 1990 Honda (Acura) Integra. I want it to be as unobtrusive and OEM looking as possible. It's an old car but I still want to do it properly!

    Picture of car:


    But first, my old system that I made a few years ago. It is based on a P133 book-style computer that I made a custom DC-DC power supply for and mounted under the passenger seat. It runs a program I wrote in VB which communicates via a serial link to a dash unit. The dash unit is based on a Atmel microcontroller and has a 40x2 character LCD and some buttons under a nice overlay I made. It has the usual MP3 player features, as well as on-screen karoke lyrics and a few other gimmicks. I won't put all the pics here because some people might be a little annoyed... All the pics of the old system can be found here: http://thompson.homedns.org/carpc/oldpcpics/

    Old CarPC dash unit:


    Some other pics of the old system you might find interesting...
    Book PC:
    http://thompson.homedns.org/carpc/ol...s/IMG_3113.JPG
    http://thompson.homedns.org/carpc/ol...s/IMG_3118.JPG

    Power Supply:
    http://thompson.homedns.org/carpc/ol...s/IMG_2678.JPG

    Dash Unit:
    http://thompson.homedns.org/carpc/ol...s/IMG_2672.JPG
    http://thompson.homedns.org/carpc/ol...s/IMG_2684.JPG
    http://thompson.homedns.org/carpc/ol...s/IMG_2671.JPG


    NEW SYSTEM
    Onto the new system. I intend to go headunit-less. I have a CF-S66 P4 motherboard with a P4 1.7Ghz, 256MB RAM, a 120GB 3.5” hard disk, and a SB Live 5.1 sound card. I’ve got a “Super” brand 7” touch screen LCD to fit into the double DIN space in the dash. I’ve also got a slot-loading DVD/CD-RW that will probably have to go in the glovebox, due to lack of dash space.

    Here’s the dash:




    The opening is 190mm X 111mm

    The 7” LCD will just fit in the double DIN spot, I pulled apart the screen and got the measurements:

    Touch panel: 169mm X 105mm X 1mm
    LCD screen: 170mm X 108mm X 11mm
    Screen viewable area: 156mm X 92mm

    The PC will go into the boot/trunk under the carpet in the spare-tire well. The idea is that no car-pc components (apart from the screen of course) be visible. I will be running Road Runner and Map Monkey for satnav.

    OK, that’s enough for this post, more to come on how I folded the custom aluminium box for the PC and made the worlds easiest LCD bezel out of a piece of MDF… Hopefully this is interesting so far?

    Cya!
    Dean

  2. #2
    Low Bitrate deanthom's Avatar
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    World's easiest double DIN bezel?

    Righto, I’ll explain the touchscreen dash mounting first. I wanted the screen to fit into the double DIN slot, and I looked at doing the usual; cutting up the existing “Super” screen’s plastic bezel, gluing it into place, then bondo and paint. Then I thought, why not just make a new bezel? I don’t need the buttons, and they won’t fit anyway. So I drew up a new bezel in Autocad.




    I printed out the template to scale, glued it onto a thin sheet of MDF and cut it out with a knife. (sorry a few of the pics are a bit dodgy, I took them with my phone).




    I used the trusty Dremel with the sanding drum to remove the inner lip of the dash piece (seen in the first post) so that the screen would drop in flush with the face of the dash piece. Here’s a test fit of the MDF piece:




    I then glued two thicker pieces of MDF to the back to attach the LCD to:





    I made a small mistake here, I thought that the LCD and the touch panel needed to be offset, hence the recess for the touch panel in the first pic. That turned out to be wrong… (more on that later)


    Then it was on to painting. I haven’t done much painting before so it was a learning experience. I found that I needed to use a spray putty primer to fill all the imperfections on the surface.




    I put on one coat of that, sanded with some 400 paper, then another coat, then sand again. I then gave it a coat of satin black, but the imperfections were still slightly visible. So further sanding with wet 1200 grit and then another coat of black fixed the problem.




    Mounted in the dash piece:





    Here’s where I realise my mistake. I didn’t centre the screen in the bezel window correctly; the left side of the image is chopped off, and there is a stripe down the right side.



    Luckily, I used hot glue, so I pulled it all apart, removed the recessed part and centred the screen. Annoying, but thankfully fairly easy to fix.


    There you have it! The easiest 2 DIN bezel I have seen, and no need to hack up your original screen casing!

    Next instalment, folding the custom aluminium case from 0.8mm sheet using a simple DIY bending brake.

  3. #3
    Low Bitrate deanthom's Avatar
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    OK, the custom aluminium enclosure. This has taken a bit of effort so far, and still isnít finished! I want to fit the PC in the boot, under the carpet in the spare tire well. I have already got the sub amp in there, and not much other space. I changed to a space saver spare to give some more room and boot space (the full-sized spare used to intrude into the boot space).

    I made a cardboard model to work out what size I could make the box and how I could fit everything in. It looks like a long box with the corner chopped off:



    The missing corner is to allow for the sloping side of the spare tire well. Next, I drew up a pattern to fold the box and lid from.



    To be able to make nice folds in the aluminium, you need a bending brake. I had an idea of how to make a simple one from 3 pieces of angle iron and a piano hinge. Looking on the net, I found that someone had already made one just like that, only bigger than what I needed. http://www.ch601.org/tools/bendbrake/brakeplans.pdf

    I made something similar, only on a smaller scale. It bent 0.8mm aluminium 370mm in length no problem. I think the pictures explain how it works pretty well...







    Using the newly made brake, I folded up the case and pop-riveted it together. Some of the folds were a bit tricky, and I had to unfold some of the tabs to get the sheet back in the brake, then re-bend them by hand afterwards. The box turned out quite well though!



    The inside of the box fits the mobo, the 3.5Ē HDD and the power supply (which is going to be a modified ATX power supply, or one of these if I can get one Ė 12V ATX)

    I havenít finished cutting out all the holes in the case yet, but these pics show how things fit in:






    The HDD is mounted on brackets with a rubber grommet shock mounting.



    You might think that the HDD is mounted upside-down, but in effect, itís not. The mobo is mounted upside down! The case actually goes into the boot with the lid at the bottom.

    The case will have an 80mm fan in one end and vent holes in the other, to suck air over all the components. Iím not sure how hot it is going to get in there; I may have to run some ducting to help get cool air in.

    Iím still finishing off the case, next post should show some pics of the finished case and where is goes in the boot.

    Thanks for reading! Any comments? Any glaringly obvious mistakes so far?

  4. #4
    Low Bitrate deanthom's Avatar
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    Here is the 2nd part of the case description. You can see that there's more stuff on the outside of the case and more ventilation holes. What's missing from inside the case is the M2-ATX power supply and the custom shut-down controller.







    Here is where the case goes in the boot, tucked in beside the spare tyre:





    Now you see it, now you dont... This is what it looks like when everything is back in the boot, no PC to be seen:


  5. #5
    Low Bitrate PSYKO_Inc's Avatar
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    Very nice screen install and case fabrication! I'm looking forward to seeing how the rest of the setup comes together. Your car reminds me of one of the cars I had while I was stationed in Okinawa. I had a black 89 Honda Integra XSi with the B16A engine. It was a very fun and peppy car, but suffered from chronic vacuum leaks. I ended up selling it to buy a Mitsubishi Delica van later on...
    -Jay

    1997 Chevy S-10, ext. cab
    CarPC Progress: 75% - Functional, but not quite finished.
    Check out my progress.

  6. #6
    Low Bitrate deanthom's Avatar
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    Thanks for the comments! Most appreciated. I will keep this up to date with my progress. So you had a Jap spec XSi, nice. That would have had a few extra gadgets that the US and Australian ones didn't have.. Pity about the vacuum leaks, don't think that's a common fault with them.

    Been doing some wiring today, half the interior is currently out! I have to run a heap of wires to the dash and 4 channel amp under the drivers seat.

    Look ma, no seats!




    Lotsa wires! Here is a list of what needs to go where

    Dash-Boot Harness
    +5V from PSU for CD and hub
    +12V from PSU for screen
    USB cable to hub
    VGA cable
    Antenna remote on
    Signal wires for future buttons/power (Power button?)
    +12V Acc
    +12V Dash lights for atuo-dim
    +12V Central locking for quick-bootup start when car is unlocked
    Aux input?

    Boot-Amp Harness
    +12V high current
    Remote on
    Audio inputs
    Common ground point in boot (or centre console?)
    Speaker wires

    So many wires!
    First Integra car PC:
    [XXXXXXXXXX] - 100% done, now removed and sold to be put into a BMW

    Second Integra car PC Worklog:
    [XXXXXXXXX.] - 95% done, PC in the car and running. Fine tuning in progress...

  7. #7
    Maximum Bitrate binary.h4x's Avatar
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    Thanks for including the link to the brake!
    2007 Honda Fit Sport 1.5L SOHC-VTEC

  8. #8
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    Very good stuff so far! Love the case

  9. #9
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    Really like that install on the screen. After seeing how easy that was I think I may try to do mine in a similar fashion, I hope. I like how you didnt have to use fiberglass and bondo and completely hack everything apart.

    Keep up the good work.

  10. #10
    Low Bitrate deanthom's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the encouraging comments guys! Yes, the reason I did the screen that way was so I didn't have to hack up the original case. I could take the screen out of the car and put it back into the original case and it would look brand new!

    I am still working on the install, will post up some progress soon. Currently fabbing an enclosure for the slot-load CDRW/DVD, power switch, and USB port that are mounted in the glove box.
    First Integra car PC:
    [XXXXXXXXXX] - 100% done, now removed and sold to be put into a BMW

    Second Integra car PC Worklog:
    [XXXXXXXXX.] - 95% done, PC in the car and running. Fine tuning in progress...

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