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  1. #1

    Just the beginnings

    Since everyone else has started showing off their setups, I thought I'd throw my hat in the ring as well.

    The battery in my laptop is buggered, and I rescued a pair of 12V, 12Ah batterys from a UPS a few weeks ago at work. Thought I'd wire em up to give my laptop some juice when I turned the Jackaroo off.

    I've wired em into a project box from DSE, cost me a couple of bucks, with a cigarette lighter socket. At the moment, the wiring is straight thru from the external terminals which are connected to the cars cigarette lighter.

    Plan is to rewire it to include a diode to prevent the "Auxilary" powering the vehicles accessories, and a fuse block to protect the sockets. Eventually it will be permently installed either under the passenger seat with only the project box visable for easy access, or the batteries under the bonnet.

    Laptop is a Toshiba Satellite 1800 running XP Pro, with OziExplorer and GPSS (Just testing it, came with the GPS), with a GPS Mouse from TWIG Systems. GPS will be mounted in front of the windscreen between the wipers and cable feed through the firewall.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Sounds kewl

    A UPS for the car PC :music-smi
    King of the Who?
    King of the Britons!
    Who are the Britons?....

  3. #3
    G'day HappyJack,

    I assume you are putting the power from the 12v batteries through a voltage adaptor and that you are aware that Toshiba laptops generally have a power input of 15 volt. Amps vary, but 3-5 amps is common.

    I'd hate to see you wreck the laptop.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Oran Park, NSW
    Posts
    1,175
    ...but as long as you're happy with the battery not charging up, most toshibas will run happilly on 12v. I've tried this with Compaqs and IBMs - neither of them are too happy to run off 12v. Another reason I like Toshiba laptops
    to a person with imagination, a map is a window to adventure
    - Sir Francis Chichester

  5. Looking good mate, but you cant just charge SLA's by plugging them into your cigarette lighter, they will be way overcharged. You need to sort out some sort of trickle charger for them or they wont last very long at all.

  6. #6
    Hey guys,

    Mitch, sure am. If you look just to the rear and left of the lappy, you'll see the Targus adaptor (Had to cut it open to find why there was no power getting through), turns out it was the input lead was broken at the ceramic filter which my boss cut off and rejoind the cable without it.

    Vincent, Thanks for the tip. Hadn't thought of the batteries being overcharged. I'll add that to the list of modifications to be done. Will check DSE site for a kit I can fit into the box. The diode I'm putting in is only rated at 4amps so that'll help cut down on the overcharging (I hope).

    thanks for the tips
    Barry

  7. #7
    Well I've finally got my touchscreen LCD today, has taken me several months of grovelling and a bit of extra earnings at the right time. Purchased from eBay. Screen is an 8.4" USB with VGA & RCA in

    Now all I have to do is work out how to install into the Jackaroo so it can be removed when not in use, and not drill any holes into the dashboard.

    You may notice a cable coiled onto top of the Laptop, this is my remote power switch that I installed with the help of my boss at work (I'm a ludite with a soldering iron), had to remove the lid closure switch as the laptop wouldn't power-up unless the screen was open. The little keyboard came from an ATM that I changed the plug from AT to PS/2.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  8. cool!

    is that screen 800x600 ?

    should be nice and easy on the eyes

  9. #9
    Yep, its currently set to 1024x768. maps look great, but text a little small. Will be experimenting with it over the weekend as much as i'm allowed.

    Mounting in the vehicle is the majour headache at the moment, the supplied stand is great for the desk, but useless for in-car use. RAM mounts way outa my budget.

    Oh yeah, as for charging the SLA's, they are pretty well shot now as the UPS they came out of, indicated they wouldn't hold charge. So if I kill them, I'll grab the next lot that come through the workshop.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    The Netherlands
    Posts
    261
    Looks nice. I envy you

    As far as the batteries: If they're 12V and your rig is 12V you should be able to recharge them without any problem.
    If you use a diode they even won't get their full load because of the voltage drop (approx 0.5 V) over the diode.
    Make sure the capacity of the diode is sufficient. Something in the range of 20 Amps. This because the initial charge on a 'empty' battery will be lots more than 4 Amps.
    Better is to use a FET-based isolater.
    Like this i.e.: http://www.perfectswitch.com/isolator.htm
    Then your UPS will get fully charged.
    Regards,
    Pocileh
    http://www.ourwebspot.nl/English_index.html

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Perth, WA. AU
    Posts
    9,127
    Blog Entries
    28
    Assuming its a windows based OS, you can change the font size within the settings. Go to Control Panel. Display Settings then Appearance.
    The sun rises and sets, the moon wax and wanes, oceans ebb and rise, warmth of spring and the coolness of autumn and my heart beats as if I belong to them all.
    www.gpsaustralia.net

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Melbourne, NE
    Posts
    201
    Quote Originally Posted by HappyJacky
    Well I've finally got my touchscreen LCD today, has taken me several months of grovelling and a bit of extra earnings at the right time. Purchased from eBay. Screen is an 8.4" USB with VGA & RCA in

    Now all I have to do is work out how to install into the Jackaroo so it can be removed when not in use, and not drill any holes into the dashboard.

    You may notice a cable coiled onto top of the Laptop, this is my remote power switch that I installed with the help of my boss at work (I'm a ludite with a soldering iron), had to remove the lid closure switch as the laptop wouldn't power-up unless the screen was open. The little keyboard came from an ATM that I changed the plug from AT to PS/2.
    What sort of $ was the touchscreen ?
    Hp Ipaq 4150, car mounted serial GPS , iGo8 and Ozi CE .TDI Disco modded, used with battle scars to show for it.

  13. #13
    eBay $260 including shipping from Hong Kong.

    Here's another one currently up for bids
    http://cgi.ebay.com.au/8-VGA-TFT-LCD...QQcmdZViewItem.

    Tried it out on Sunday, after spending a couple of hours around at a mates place sorting out a rough mounting system, glad he has a metal lathe and a scrap of round aluminium. Photos to follow later.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Titjikala via alice springs NT
    Posts
    34

    romote power switch

    Happyjacky,
    how hard is it to wire in a remote power switch??? I don't have the problem of the laptop shutting down if the lid is closed but my lappy is sealed (opentec).
    just wondering if you wire the switch straight onto the power button would it work???

    Todd'
    Last edited by brownietodd; 6th March 2007 at 08:06 AM.

  15. #15
    Hi Brownietodd,

    When I get a chance, i'll download the photo i took of the wiring with my phone, but that's exactly what I got my boss to do for me, soldered the cable to the power switch, which was threaded through the laptop chassis, under the hinge and out through a hole I filed in the hinge cover.

    I had to remove the plunger from the lid closure switch because the laptop wouldn't power up with the lid closed.

    Butchered a motherboard to get the CD Audio connectors which were then soldered to the cable to allow easy disconnection when not needed.

    All laptops should be able to be disassembled, check for screws in the base, but it does depend on where your power switch is located as to how much you'll need to disassemble it.

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