Pandora Car Kit


gruso

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I started on my car docking station for Pandora today. The car is making the job relatively easy for me, as it has a nice flat shelf section on the dash with an accessible anchor point centered under the windscreen. I'll get some dash pics later on.

The idea in a nutshell, is that it will sit flat on little rubber feet, and will also be braced back to an anchor point to prevent it sliding around. A power plug will be fixed at the rear, so that Pandora is powered whenever it's docked. I'll beam sound to the car stereo via a mini FM transmitter. And maybe down the track, I'll add some external USB controls.

Here are the bits I've acquired so far:



In the pic:

- Lighter socket extension with on/off switch
- Lighter socket to USB adapter, with power plugs for iPod, NDS, GBA, and PSP/Pandora.
- 3/16" threaded rod. This will form the bracket arms, and may fail horribly.
- Beige edition Pandora
- Little rubber feet
- A "craft box", purchased for its uncannily suitable dimensions. The less craftsmanship I fail to display the better. I'm sure it would look just darling covered in lace and filled with potpourri, but this little box has a date with a hammer.

A little bashing and reshuffling, and...



At this stage it resembles one of Homer's spice racks, but it'll get there. It does look like there's too much of a lip at the front, but Pandora will need a gap at the rear for the lid to swing back. This was a lucky coincidence I planned this from the start.

That's probably all I'll get done this week, stay tuned for more.
 

cbox

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I was thinking maybe there's a blue tooth remote control because I was thinking of doing the same thing. actually let me look...

Yep there's quite a few on ebay, I'm guessing the ones for specific stereos should work fine? I think BT is pretty plug and play, isn't it?
 

gruso

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cbox said:
I was thinking maybe there's a blue tooth remote control because I was thinking of doing the same thing. actually let me look...

Yep there's quite a few on ebay, I'm guessing the ones for specific stereos should work fine? I think BT is pretty plug and play, isn't it?

Bluetooth! Of course. Those Kenwood remotes on ebay are cheap and plentiful.

d99c_1.jpg


I'll put that one on the backburner for now, but when the time comes it'll be a much better option than USB.
 
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Gilrad

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Any chance of spiffing up the shelf? Raw painted wood is sort of "Granny's back door" craft-ish, and removes all the thoughts of awesome blue lights and flashing things from the 'mod' side of DIY, and replaces it with the hanging wires held together by twist ties and badly soldered wires side of DIY.


In other words, make it shiny, make it glow. That would be awesome.
 

gruso

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As mentioned, it's only in the Homer Spice Rack stage right now. Getting the finish right will be important, and it will involve something a little better than matte black slapped on with an old sock. I'm thinking of a dark, textured paint with a finishing coat of clear lacquer. Shiny, yes. Flashy LED crap, no. :p

And I'm an electrician, so I'm an expert at hiding wires.


[edit]

This is the paint I'm considering. Galmet Hammered Metal.

galmet1.jpg


[edit 2]

A slightly refined spice rack in its eventual resting place.



At the rear you can see a little square hole in the dash. In here is a nice chunky screw securing the dash, which will double as an anchor point for the dock. An arm will extend out of the hole in a nice curve to the rear of the dock. Hopefully. The threaded rod idea has been canned, it breaks when bent in a small radius.
 

PoisonedV

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riosingh said:
lets play guess that car

i think 1992 subaru legacy
i have to say, i like the squarish asthetics
 
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Trip

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Looking good :)
Don't forget to leave room for some sort of padding too. I'd go with that sticky rubber mesh stuff that's (mainly) used to hold things like mobile phones in caravans and cars. Can't remember what it's called at the moment though??
 

gruso

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^ Cheers. :) I've got some of that stuff, definitely good for grip & padding but I'm not sure how good I can make it look.

@ riosingh: Not a Liberty. Smaller, older, girlier. :D

In other news, mini FM transmitter ordered and on the way. Just have to get the mounting bracket sorted, then wait for Pandora so I can locate the power plug and confirm the final overall fit.
 

gruso

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Post preorder bump! Just thought I'd let people know the project is still active.

AUDIO OUTPUT - CHANGE OF PLAN
I received my FM transmitter, it's a piece of crap. The reception is good but the sound quality is woeful (no bass, muddy mids). For the price of a good quality transmitter, I can actually get a new car stereo with line in. So I'll go down that path eventually.

MOUNTING

The mounting bracket will be adapted from a large one of these: http://www.electricalwholesales.com.au/pic.../8/649138-1.jpg
...so it's time to get to work on that. I can also start running cables, concealed in the dash as far as possible.

PAINTING
Paint has been purchased (wood primer, hammered metal topcoat, and chrome for the bracket). I may also go for a clear lacquer spray on top of the hammered metal, if extra gloss is required. I can't paint it until Pandora arrives, because I still need to locate holes in the rear for power & USB.

NAVIGATION

I'm also having a proper look at my GPS options, either USB or Bluetooth. A pocket sized unit like this would make for a very mobile setup, independent of the car kit. I need to do more research before I buy anything.
Bluetooth GPS purchased! http://img137.imageshack.us/img137/2207/minis3inhandtm3.jpg


I feel like I'm on a deadline now, which is kind of exciting.
 
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benjiro

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riosingh said:
lets play guess that car

i think 1992 subaru legacy
Don't think so... Got one here ( 1992 model ), and the dash does not look anything like that one... Everything is rounded. The heating does remind me of the legacy's, but if it's a legacy, its a older model from before 1992.

Looks more like a care from before the 1992 models. Just look at the km's ( or miles? ) on the dash. 282.059. I'm assuming its km's. So, that brings the car before the 1990's ( unless its been used a lot ). ;-)

Based on the picture, you can already tell its not a mainland EU country's car ( driver seat on the right side ). But the look is more a Asian design from those times... Lets face it, 282000km ... Its a Asian car. No way you do that much km's without high costs ( aka, where you end up cheaper replacing it ). In other words, forget European or us build cars from that era. :)
 
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gruso

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Ok, I'll put the car speculation to rest now. :p It's a 1986 Ford Laser hatchback. I believe they shared a platform with Mazda for a period there, so Asian may well be right.

Tyrekicker factoids: Picked it up for $1200 from a workmate. 10 months rego, one female owner (seriously), full service history, brand new tyres, and the interior is in 95% new condition. It's gutless, but quite comfy. A hell of a bargain.

 

j.pickens

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Gruso said:
Ok, I'll put the car speculation to rest now. :p It's a 1986 Ford Laser hatchback. I believe they shared a platform with Mazda for a period there, so Asian may well be right.

Tyrekicker factoids: Picked it up for $1200 from a workmate. 10 months rego, one female owner (seriously), full service history, brand new tyres, and the interior is in 95% new condition. It's gutless, but quite comfy. A hell of a bargain.




Hey, if it's that old a car, doesn't it have a cassette player?
I have used the cassette audio adapters, and they work much better than FM transmitters.
 
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