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Thread: My 1st Car PC Project

  
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    My 1st Car PC Project

    Hi everyone, i'm new on here and as i've just finished my first in car pc project i'd thought i'd share it.
    I started out wanting the same as everyone else, the monitor to replace where the vents go. But after buying some dodgy modified centre console from some git on The Bay, I got to looking at modifying a sat nav centre console to house a touchscreen!
    Sourcing the components came quite quickly after deciding this was the way to go, as i'd get to keep the vents and all other original things in the console, without having to move the hazard switch. I found a screen, but had to buy a seperate touch panel interface, which turned out to be the perfect size.
    So, this is what happened.....


    I made the whole bigger by cutting down the sides and gently bending the part above the heater vents down. I used fibre glass to fill it, sanded it back, and then used normal flat filler over the top which was sanded smooth.

    When it came to painting, I decided I wanted the Astra H look, the piano black type. So with much prepping and a whole litre of gloss black paint, I got this.....


    With that done, and wanting to get it in quickly, I got to loading Windows onto the PC (by using a battery as a power source as the PC runs direct from 12v supply). It was done by using the screen so it setup using the proper resolutions.....


    Once that was done I had to modify the dash where the screen was to sit as it is just slightly bigger than the space thats there. I used a Dremmel and cut out the dash reinforcement, carefully avoiding the heater vent support.
    And with a bit of a squeeze.....


    Yes, its in!

    I had a few problems with the touchscreen panel. It works ok most of the time, but on some startups, even with calibrating it everytime, it doesn't always recognise where you touch properly. So I had to use an emergency mouse in the glovebox. With that getting on my tits, I bought a USB touch panel, the same as a laptop uses. I mounted this in the pocket in the console flush so you can still get things in and out without disturbing it. It also eliminates the mouse from moving across the screen when driving so it stays in full screen mode.....


    And a couple more for good measure.....




    For now all thats left to do is strip down the PC and build it into the top shelf instaed of loose as it still is atm. I'll add some more USB adaptors too, maybe built in next to the traction control swith.....


    I hope you've enjoyed reading this, any feedback or questions are welcome. I have to thank Andy and Steve for their help and Jo (the Mrs) for her endless patience!

    Thanks.

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    domino's Avatar
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    What system did you use?

    Can you give us a spec? what about costs?

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    The PC is a mini ITX, only running at 1ghz if i remember correctly, with 256 or 512 ram. On that i'm using Centrafuse as the controls are easier to use than any other windows app. Plus it has the sat nav, bluetooth, OBD functions amongst others. The PC is connected to My headunit to, so i can still use all of its other functions too, no need for radio dongles.

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    Total cost is only around £200-£250 so far.

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    Did you build the pc yourself, or buy it as a package?

    If you built it, what component parts?

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    The PC was bought as a whole. I upgraded the harddrive from a measly 10gb to 80gb. Didn't go any higher because i'm only storing music really. only have about 6gb on it so far and thats still a lot! Also, I bought and installed a different PSU, so it would startup and shutdown with the ignition, costing about £40 altogether.

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    It has a dvd drive too, and looks good on the monitor.

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    Which PSU did you opt for?

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    PPL-I-150. Bought off The Bay, as was most of the other parts.

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    Looks good wippleman.

    I have a Car PC installed too but haven't been brave enough to dash fab yet. Trying to decide whether to use a sat nav centre console for my Xenarc 700TSV or lose the airvents and use a standard centre console.

    Good work

    Dave
    Whiteline RARB & Strut Brace with Eibach Pro, Bilstein B4s & RnD Droplinks - FARB Powerflex'd

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