Wednesday, 10 July 2013

MR2 Dashboard tinkering

Being a 1980s car, the MR2 doesn't have a DIN radio slot or ISO connections for car audio. The surround had been butchered at one point years ago to try and make a CD player fit and looked grim. On top of that the lid for the ash tray had fallen off and as nobody is going to smoke in the car I took the ash tray and lighter out and stuck the lid down permanently with epoxy.

So I needed a 12-volt socket to charge my 'phone and to neaten up the radio surround.

I got this lightweight radio in Lidl on offer. It has no CD, but plays back from SD cards and USB devices, which suits me for a summer car. Power output is low, but I'm putting a power amp in my centre speaker cabinet along with a pair of better speakers, so not a problem. All 4 outputs can drive the MR2's own speakers.

The red panel will be covered in black vinyl from a big old handbag I got for 50p in a charity shop and the 12-volt sockets are a £1 adaptor from Poundland. Only drawback at present is the USB hole is too deep for a normal plug, but I'm working on that.

The panel itself is made from my new favourite stuff, PVC foamboard. This stuff is rigid, pretty tough and can be cut with a craft knife. Great for prototyping and light fabrication.

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