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Old 12-23-2004, 11:15 PM
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Huge upcomming Project

Im working on a project for my car that will allow everything to be monitored, adjusted, turned on/off by a touch screen. Its going to have all my lights in the car on it, about 6 gauges for the engine, and any other thing i can think of to put on it. What do you think? and give me some ideas.

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Old 12-23-2004, 11:56 PM
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I hope you're one heck of a computer geek, or know a couple good ones, because that's what it's going to take for the project! A friend and I have discussed using a graphic LCD (PII laptop) for a dash display, but no touch screen. Even that would be a major undertaking, and we were just considering using graphic numbers and maybe bar charts, nothing fancy, at least at first. Haven't went further than discussion though, sorry!
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Old 12-24-2004, 12:31 AM
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yea Ive been researching it for awhile now and i have a friend that is learning computer programming and another thats learning electronics and im a jack of all trades lol. i already figured out how to activate and control LEDS from the parallel port so thats sorta a big leap. I think the biggest problem would be getting all the sensors to work right. hey and if i get this done i might even sell you the software and hardware for it...... because that was my intention figure out how to do this and package it and sell it. any other ideas let me know.
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Old 12-26-2004, 10:45 PM
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I would try and go with a commercial, off the shelf, touch screen. That will give you dependability and, most likely, a software development kit. For outputs, you might want to check out some web sites on scientific insturmentation. You can likely find ready-made USB to dry contact control units. That would save you from having to filter and protect your ports.
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Old 12-26-2004, 10:54 PM
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Dreadlord,

Check out this electronics plan on a project http://www.commerce.usask.ca/staff/h...rb/mp3car.html

It is similar to what you are considering.
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Old 12-27-2004, 12:21 PM
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hey thats pretty cool thanks
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Old 12-27-2004, 12:35 PM
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USB I/o

I think this would be a great project. I plan on doing the same thing. I do this type of thing at work. Check out AutomationDirect.com for some hardware. I am checking out USB I/O from LabJack. I may intigrate this to a PLC / PC combo.

Check out Potter-Brumfield or OPTO-22 for relays.

http://www.labjack.com/labjack_u12.html
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Old 12-27-2004, 10:03 PM
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sweet im not the only one doing this...

how difficult would it be to get all the gauges to work properly.... programming wise...if anyone knows about that?
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Old 12-28-2004, 05:11 AM
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Most of your existing senders will be analog. You will need an A/D converter (once again, common and readily available). The programming of the actual operations should be pretty straight forward. It's getting the screens right that will take most of the work, I think.
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Old 12-28-2004, 01:21 PM
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Screen

Do you already have the screen? You could get an inexpensive HMI [Human Machine Interface] or better yet use a Windows CE Touch-Screen that will be the controller and monitor all in one. Then you can use the LabJack directly out the USB port. No converters, very smooth intigration, no moving parts [like hard drives] you will just need to relay your outputs using an optically isolated board [Advantech, OPTO-22, Potterbrumfield]
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