With regards to the clock relocation kit
There is NO need to splice the wires. I found out that if you just "delete" the plastic push-pin bracket that currently holds the clock/trip meter assembly attached to one of the walls under the dash, you are able to extend it enough downwards to make it reach the new location. I am not sure now if you are able to make it work with the AVO relocation kit since I mounted mine at a different angle. I believe either way you will have to cut thru a certain plastic tab to accomodate the harness. I have a few pictures but they are at home. Will attach it later to this thread.
Bottom line, I was able to do move the clock/info meter
without cutting ANY wires; using the original harness. I did cut thru the aforementioned plastic bracket though - which seems less detrimental than say cutting the dashboard support pillars as in the case of the AVO single DIN. To be more precise: I carved a portion of it - the bracket is still there and I did not affect the structural rigidity of that "assembly" - I just took away a portion of it to practice this passage for the harness. It will be more clear when I post the pictures.
With regards to the mounting of the PC and the power source
: I wholeheartedly concur with Darkfox1. I chose teh Carnetix DC-DC smart controller with similar features as the M1/M2-ATX unit that he described. I am a firm believer in as many safety nets as possible. I would NOT recmmend wiring your computer or monitor directly to the battery ... and not even the cigarette lighter - even if that is fused at the car and fused at the cig lighter itself. This being said, my power source is "fused", connecting to the cig lighter (the dashboard one) with another fused thingie...and the cig lighter source itself is fused in the main fuse panel. I hope I would rather burn a few fuses than a 400 dollar touchscreen.
I will attach my power source unit in the trunk, hanging from one of the screws under the 3rd brake light. The source itself
is ventilated by a fan and will have the entire trunk space around it filled with air, to ensure adequate cooling. And the more powerful (more wattage) it has: the cooler it will work.
I will mount the laptop
in a little custom plastic box: will attach a 12v fan to complement its existing cooling capacity and dampen vibrations with some foam. I will attach to the back wall of the trunk with velcro (at least this is the current thought). Obviously a built in pC is better but the laptop was available to me free: it is a pre-assembled package and I find having a battery an advantage since I can be sure the computer will shut down nicely even if I just yank the key out of the ignition. Sure the battery will only hold charge for like 15 min but that is plenty of time for the software to turn off the computer / or make it hibernate.
With regards to the screen
, obviously one of the reasons I chose to modify the original housing is to prevent excessive tap force being applied to the screen and burning the controller. As I said - and look to the pictures again - I just shaved
the edges off the housing - the rest of the components will fit right in and the entire housing will be assembled back with the OEM screws. Takes some accurate measuring and a steady hand at using the Dremmel (do not try after a night of heavy partying) but nothing too dramatic that one cannot handle.