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Old 07-11-2018, 04:38 PM   #1
jpsuli
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Default Raspberry Pi Android Auto Project

Ever since Crankshaft was a thing I really wanted to incorporate this with my Saturn as my ZTE Axon 7 fits absolutely no phone mount, and the ones that do fall in less than a month.

I intend on running this setup from the battery and having a relay connected to the radio, so only the setup turns on if the radio turns on. (I would have fog lights, a dashcam, and this setup connected to the relay.)

The common issue people have told me that it will block my field of view when driving, but at my height there is no issue with that.



Here are a few wallpapers I threw together quickly:
Saturn_Dark
Saturn_Light
Saturn_Original

I am currently designing a 3D printed case to hold the touchscreen and pi. I will make the files available here once done, and if people are interested in this project I can print the case for them if you have no access to a 3D printer.

I only need to run 2 wires to the Pi, one for power to the Pi itself and an extension for a USB port that will be next to the cigarette lighter.

The only concern I have is heat during the summer because it can become unbearably hot in that car with no AC, I plan on adding heatsinks to the Pi and a small 5V fan with a temperature gauge if needed.

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Old 07-12-2018, 12:18 AM   #2
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Default Re: Raspberry Pi Android Auto Project

Update: Got the relay and fuse installed so I can get extra charging. Now I'm no longer relying on the cigarette lighter to use my dashcam or charge my phone. Would've gotten it done quicker had it not been for these mosquitoes!

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Old 07-12-2018, 12:54 PM   #3
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Default Re: Raspberry Pi Android Auto Project

Very cool project. One of the big dangers to batteries in the car is when the car is parked in the hot sun - lot of car cams use capacitors for that reason.

Blocking the sun is a good way to keep car temps relatively cool.

I don't know IL laws, but you are most likely legal to tint the back and rear side windows.

vent shades for the front side windows and you can leave your windows cracked to let heat out, even if it might rain



Popup shades to block the windshield when you are parked


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Old 07-14-2018, 07:43 PM   #4
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Default Re: Raspberry Pi Android Auto Project

Quote:
Originally Posted by alordofchaos View Post
Very cool project. One of the big dangers to batteries in the car is when the car is parked in the hot sun - lot of car cams use capacitors for that reason.
Funny, my dash cam has a battery in it. I suppose capacitors are more expensive in todays market.

Since the only battery I'm running things off of is the car battery, I am not worried about head. The raspberry pi that was driving this screen has been in 130 F heat before and somehow survived, it's the screen I am more or less worried about. I asked on /r/crankshaft about this issue and was told that someone has their screen in a similar scenario with little issue.

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Old 07-14-2018, 10:02 PM   #5
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Default Re: Raspberry Pi Android Auto Project

Nice project! I can't view your three imgur images, as shown below when I clicked each link. I made a plexiglass mount, glued two velcro straps to hold my Nexus-7 tablet. All I wanted was a large screen GPS map for navigation. The thin plexiglass was bolstered with another thin strip to build up enough thickness to make the standard 1/4-20 threads. This mount screws onto a suction cup mount anywhere I want it. After some trial and error (the 7" screen does obscure a small portion of the view thru the windshield), I settled on the lower center portion of the windshield. It obscures the front right headlight area but not enough to be concerned. My Nexus-7 croaked (5yrs) and replaced with a Samsung Tablet S2. It's slightly larger but still fits the plexiglass mount - with a rear mounted camera bump, I dremeled (ball router) into the plexiglass so the tablet sits flat while secured with the adjustable velcro straps. The photos are with the Nexus-7. After indenting two spots on the plexiglass mount, I can turn the tablet 180 degrees and still have the camera bump sit inside one of two routed indents.

Both tablets are wifi only with bluetooth and I still have the dinosaur radio to play CDs.... I suppose if I upgrade to a bluetooth radio and full digital phone plan, I can probably sync the tablet to phone but I choose not to. Navigating is my main reason for a larger than phone screen navigation. My suction cup mount falls off from leaving it on the windshield so I sprayed silicone on the flexible cup and let it sit indoors for a few days. It seemed to rejuvenate it. I don't leave the suction cup mount on the windshield anymore. Eventually when the flexible cup dries out I'll consider another suction cup mount.

I like the heads up display without averting my eyes from looking forward, scanning left/rear/right side view mirrors with the gps map in the scanning area. I don't leave my tablet in the car for the sun to cook it or in winter freezing temps. Unless electronics are made and specified to work from subzero to over 130F, exposed to sun, uv and infrared heat, I wouldn't presume them to be safe, left exposed to the sun in hot temperatures. Maybe they work now but sooner or later when its least expected, they may fail. It's just wiser to disconnect and either take it with you or store it away from sunlight to reduce heat absorption.

I use my tablet occasionally for gps navigation so it goes with me almost everywhere when I leave the house.
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Old 07-14-2018, 10:47 PM   #6
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Default Re: Raspberry Pi Android Auto Project

Quote:
Originally Posted by fdryer View Post
It's just wiser to disconnect and either take it with you or store it away from sunlight to reduce heat absorption.
See, my belief is that if I am going to do this at all it has to be 100% perfect and seemless. I initially was going to do a tablet mod, very similar to yours. Then there was the issue of Android Auto connecting to my phone and not supporting it.

The issue I found with a tablet is that if the tablet dies, assuming you keep it on at all times to get instant start on car startup, you must wait 5 minutes for it to kick back up again. Navigating is the major reason for this, this car will soon be making long road trips, and for the past 3 years of ownership, I've just left my phone on the passenger seat looking down every now and then (quite dangerous). This method will ensure that the screen will not move during traveling, something that happens all too often will windshield mounted installations and ease ability if someone else needs to drive my car, though bluetooth integration is still being worked on by the crankshaft developer.

I want this to look as if it were stock and just plug-and-play with my phone. There is totally a possibility of losing my Pi or the Pi Screen, but I am okay with this as long as it works for a year. (I believe the cold will kill it before anything else.) I am more than happy to provide my experience so that others can decide if it's worth doing to their cars. Now, it's worth noting that during the weeks I don't drive it or leave the city I use one of those reflective car covers for the windshield.


I will have to say, the day after I gathered the supplies for this project, I found a phone mount that actual fits my phone perfectly while sticking very well. As you have said though, they aren't forever and I can't return the screen, so I gotta do it.

Also, here are direct imgur links (These are only 800x480 custom for the Rasp Pi screen, I can make higher resolution variants if others need it):
Black Saturn
White Saturn
Original Saturn

It has also come to my realization that my design will only be usable for 95-99 models due to the interior differences. Once I get this done I may make a universal mount for those with later / earlier models along with L series.

Last edited by jpsuli; 07-14-2018 at 10:54 PM..

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Old 07-15-2018, 12:41 AM   #7
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Default Re: Raspberry Pi Android Auto Project

5 minutes for startup?! That's eons of time waiting for system boot up. If you're patient, starting and driving until the system is up may be the only way to wait for this slow setup. A good phone with Google maps can be used with or without a data plan. I don't have a data plan, just minimum phone and texting. I use wifi when near any hotspot for phone or tablet. Google allows downloading any map of a local or other areas so my phone or tablet will navigate without need to be connected to cell services. The gps sensor is independent of cell services and only needs (downloadable) Google maps wherever a person lives to operate exactly as standalone Garmins do without having to buy a Garmin.

Does your ZTE Axon 7 have Google maps for navigation? This may be the best way to use your phone for navigation now that you have a phone holder. There's always a way to find or make a holder. I did.

As you can see in my pics, the suction cup mount is removable to put away, transfer to another vehicle (did that when borrowing a Subaru Outback), take my tablet anywhere for complete portability without dangling power cables or other connections between phone and tablet. When the first portable navigation devices came out (Tom Tom, Garmin, others) with various window mounts, most thought nothing of leaving them mounted.......until thieves saw a simple opportunity to break into cars and steal them. NYC is not a place to leave anything of value in the open for everyone to see. My guess is owners with new stuff like to show off to friends, family and neighbors that they have the latest toys........ignorant of the criminal elements lurking around for any opportunity.

And those links do not work. Other imgurs seem to be viewable when other members post a link. I suggest members wanting to post pics or images attach them in Saturnfans photo albums or attachments with only one precaution - images must be less than a megabyte in file size, preferably in jpeg format, to be accepted as thumbnails. When anyone clicks on a thumbnail, a new page opens to a full size image for clarity. And the pics/images remains in Saturnfans database, not lost when a link dies.

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Old 07-15-2018, 08:58 AM   #8
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Default Re: Raspberry Pi Android Auto Project

Quote:
Originally Posted by fdryer View Post
Nice project! I can't view your three imgur images, as shown below when I clicked each link.
I see the same thing you do in your screen captures - a Saturn logo. I think that is what OP posted, for use as wallpapers for the tablet.

The Sero Pro 7 is an inexpensive Nexus 7 clone, if you ever need one in the future. I bought my first for $90 and a few years ago, picked up another one for under $50 off eBay. Thanks to VUEmaniac for pointing them out
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...highlight=sero

(they are actually more featured than the Nexus 7, as they take micro SD and have HDMI out)

Both are running KitKat now, but Lollipop and Marshmallow are available (I've installed both on the tablets at one time but went back, slightly laggy under certain conditions)

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