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1984-1989 1.5 DIN Car Computer project

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Old 07-01-2017, 02:25 PM
  #41  
LWesthaver
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Originally Posted by -=Jeff=- View Post
Awesome project..

Do you have a list of equipment you are using? Also are you willing to share some of your code? I really like a the features you have.. this is very cool
Thanks!

I will be posting everything once I get the project finished. Trying to document everything while the project evolves and changes is just too time consuming. I've got a bunch of info I want to share but it will have to wait a while.

In the meantime, if you have questions about what I'm doing just let me know. I'll try to answer them.

-Wes

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Old 07-02-2017, 01:22 AM
  #42  
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I just found this thread, this is a really cool project. I am amazed by your tech abilities.

I doubt I will ever have the tech skills to attempt anything like this but it is really interesting to follow. Thank you for sharing!
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Old 07-10-2017, 11:43 AM
  #43  
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Here's a few more shots of the bracketry with the original BOSE overlay in the background:



The spacers in the following pictures are temporary. I used a stack of individual spacers and washers to arrive at the final spacing. I'll replace them with single spacers that are the correct length.







And here's the assembly installed in the dash with the trim plate in place:







I still have to make the overlay that covers the faceplate. The overlay will be matte-black and will cover the clear Acrylic faceplate hiding the screws, touch-screen frame etc. The overlay will also have the symbols and lettering for the volume control and USB port.

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Old 07-26-2017, 11:29 PM
  #44  
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My incredibly helpful and crafty sister offered to cut a self-adhesive matte-black overlay on her "Cricut" home die-cutting machine from my mechanical drawings. I think it turned out really well.





I need figure out how to adapt this die-cutting technology to include labels for the volume control and USB jack that can be seen in the daylight and back-lit at night.

Here's a couple of shots with the overlay taped in place temporarily.





I found that I needed to rotate the USB jack by 90 degrees after I had the acrylic cut. So the overlay has the cutout properly oriented while the acrylic behind it has the cutout 90 degrees out of phase. I've made a few tweaks to the acrylic and will have a new piece cut soon.

Baby steps... baby steps...

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Old 07-27-2017, 02:36 PM
  #45  
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If I might suggest something, I think you should try a different approach than using an 80's style interface because it's an 80's car. It makes it look dated, not nostalgic.

You have the power to do whatever sort of graphics style you wish, since you have modern tools. My approach would be to either mimic the style of the LCD dash, or mimic the style of the physical buttons on the dash. You might even combine the two.

I do realize this is an opinion, so take it for what its worth. Good job on everything and good work on the programming. I can really appreciate all that you are doing, having swapped out my double-din non-Bose system with an off-the-shelf head unit took me the better part of a week, and I didn't have to fabricate anything, just grind and trim and grind, and grind, and grind...

Keith

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Old 07-28-2017, 12:55 PM
  #46  
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Interface look is after all the hard parts are done.

For labels, maybe matt overlay in different color? Probably too small for the cutter. Maybe plastic print? Fun part is adhesive.

Last edited by kael; 07-28-2017 at 12:59 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 09-17-2017, 06:11 PM
  #47  
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The dash is going back together.

There's a lot of wiring that has to be brought from behind the dash to the rear of the car. Essentially, there's not much behind the dash now except for the new acrylic chassis, the touch-screen, USB jack and the volume control.

While I had the dash apart, I did the Batee C68 repair and replaced the "Bread Loaf" with a flat-panel dash kit from Ecklers.

I'll post more pics soon.











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Old 03-03-2018, 11:03 PM
  #48  
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In case anyone thought I had dropped off the end of the earth, I'm still toiling away at this project. 2017 was a tough year. After my previous post I had some health issues and so work on the project slowed down a lot. But after dealing with the health issues and finding out that some of my assumptions about this project were wrong, re-working those assumptions and updating some of the hardware used... Here is what the system now looks like:









You may have noticed that the touch screen is on the right-hand side now and the volume control is on the left-hand side where God and GM intended it to be. It turns out that by upgrading to a new capacitive touch screen, not only is the system more responsive to touch, it also allowed me to redesign the front panel layout and put the controls where I really wanted them in the first place. When I started this project, the capacitive touch screen wasn't available. Now it is. And it's cheaper. Yay!

I've reworked the power management system and made other improvements as well.

The GPS receiver I got for Christmas is now integrated into the system so now I can record road trip data.

And finally, I'm starting to work on displaying live OBD1 data. I'm still putting the puzzle pieces together and it may take a while (unless someone in-the-know offers to educate me) but the system is working for the most part and I'm happy with its appearance and features.

I posted these photos on the Facebook Corvette Forum and was overwhelmed by the positive responses I received. It is gratifying to see others getting excited about this project. Early C4 owners don't have a lot of options when it comes to replacing their old BOSE head units and I think this project will offer a viable option.

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Old 03-04-2018, 01:33 AM
  #49  
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Glad to hear your doing better health wise. The the tuch screen looks AMAZING!

Great work!
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Old 03-04-2018, 09:19 AM
  #50  
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That looks great! Do you have a parts list you can share?
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Old 03-04-2018, 08:47 PM
  #51  
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I just saw this thread today. WOW! that is some really nice work.

Glad to hear your health issues are behind you.
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Old 03-05-2018, 09:18 AM
  #52  
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"And finally, I'm starting to work on displaying live OBD1 data. I'm still putting the puzzle pieces together and it may take a while (unless someone in-the-know offers to educate me) but the system is working for the most part and I'm happy with its appearance and features."

Good luck on your continued health, can't do much without it.

I connected a logic analyzer to the OBD1 data out connection last summer on my '84 car. I didn't have something right, I saw a waveform, but wasn't getting valid data. I didn't try too hard, as I didn't have a real connector.

I was using that Australian website for an '84 ECM as a reference. If you care to share your attempts at this, it would be interesting to me.

Thanks, Ken.
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Old 03-07-2018, 11:56 PM
  #53  
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This is the best thing I've seen in a while. Looks great in your dash. Will you have a parts/build list/code/instructions/kit at any time? I had thought to do something like this centered around an Arduino and VFD displays, had not thought of a Raspberry PI and a touch screen. I really like what you've done. Really cool...

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Old 03-09-2018, 08:21 AM
  #54  
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This is the coolest thing I have ever seen put in a C4 dash!
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Old 04-25-2018, 02:21 AM
  #55  
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Time to check in again!

I've spent a good deal of time investigating the ALDL/OBD1 data stream emitted by the ECM in our early C4's and have focused on the 160bps data stream. Before anyone scoffs, and asks why not use the faster more data rich 8192bps data stream? Well, there's a goodly amount of useful information in the 160bps data stream and so I'm starting there. Once I'm satisfied that I've got the 160bps stream handled I'll move on to the 8192bps stream. In fact I'd like to explore the data stream that no one talks about, namely the smaller data stream that feeds data continually to the digital dash for things like the MPG readout etc.

So after reading about all the really hacky things people have done to fit the square peg of ALDL data into the round hole of RS232 UARTs I decided to take a different tack. I decided to employ an Arduino to sample the ALDL data and convert it to a stream of easily read and easily parsed ASCII 1's and 0's.

I purchased this ALDL cable from http://www.aldlcable.com/:



And I cobbled together a perf board to tap into the various ALDL connections and added a 10k resistor with an enable/disable jumper. From there the ALDL data line and ground were attached to the arduino. And finally, the Arduino is plugged into the Raspberry Pi which reads the incoming data and also powers the Arduino.



Here's an O-Scope image of the 160bps ALDL data stream coming from the ECM:



As you can see, there's a bunch of activity in between two quiet periods. All those blips at the bottom of the trace are the data bits. The amount of time the voltage stays at zero volts determines whether the bit is a 0 or a 1.

After several hours of contemplating and coding, my Arduino finally read the ALDL stream. Success! Or so I thought. When I started the engine the data became garbled. Another look at the ALDL stream with the engine running revealed that there were some small, random voltage spikes present. The scope image below shows the tiny spikes:



Since the ALDL line wasn't as clean as I had hoped, it was time to rewrite my code to allow it to ignore minor glitches on the data line. A few hours later I had a working program.

This has worked out really well. I now have an Arduino doing what it does best (which is handling real-world time-critical events). Then it transmits the data to the Raspberry Pi to do what it does best (which is processing raw data and presenting it graphically).

This video shows the ALDL data stream from the ECM being displayed on the Raspberry Pi touch-screen. The video quality isn't good enough to see that when I press the over-drive button on my shifter, one of the bits changes from a 0 to a 1. Pretty cool stuff.



The background music (Neil Young's "Computer Age") from the early 80's seems particularly fitting given the car and the project.

Now I have to take all those 1's and 0's (which represent things like the TPS voltage, BLM counts, MAF air flow rate, IAC position etc.) and translate them into a digital/analog/barchart/graph that can be displayed on the touch-screen.

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Old 04-25-2018, 08:41 AM
  #56  
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THAT is quite cool!!!
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Old 04-25-2018, 12:00 PM
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very nice to see progress here, I'd like to try the same, but I'd use a parallax propeller.. nice work!
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Old 04-25-2018, 05:58 PM
  #58  
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CANNOT wait to see the "final" (although I'm sure it'll never really be final) product. Just found this post today and am totally blown away with your vision for this! Bravo!
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Old 04-26-2018, 03:18 PM
  #59  
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Curious what you've noted in RPM data when in diagnostic or not, among other items.

I've been running a 1320 bluetooth to ALDLDroid, in diagnostic mode the data is of course tainted since the ECM is using defaults to control engine. When I turn off diagnostic, data goes whacky; clear item is RPMs starts adding instead of showing level, meaning each sample the RPM increases by its value, so it increases and increases until max and thens starts over.

Maybe the ADX I have is junk? Tried A028 and some others, the A028 worked okay in diagnostic, the others didn't.
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Old 04-26-2018, 06:03 PM
  #60  
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Wow. What an impressive project. Very nicely done!
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