When we went to Mt Buller skiing a few weeks ago now (I might post about this sometime if I get around to it), we took a GPS receiver and satellite navigation software installed on one of our PDA’s. It worked REALLY well in telling us how to get where, so I decided to get something similar when I got home.
Anyway, after a bit of hunting around, I decided on the Parrot ck3400 LS/GPS which is basically a bluetooth handsfree car kit that can synchronise with my PDA/phone (Eten M600). It also has a GPS receiver, and wires into my stereo system so that any sound for phone calls or GPS go through that.
So I bought one of these units from eXpansys (I don’t suggest buying from them…their in stock status appears to be somewhat random, and when I received the unit, the box was damaged from their warehouse somehow, but the unit still works I guess).
I decided to wait until the weekend for installation as it was looking to be a bit fiddly. In the meantime I did some research, and found this page, which was quite useful in figuring out how to remove the stereo’s head unit.
Saturday came and I got a friend to come around and help me with it since he is more knowledgeable about cars and how they’re usually fitted together than me. We managed to get the head unit out after a little bit of fighting with it, then proceeded to start dismantling the dash behind it. This proved to be much harder than expected. Example of complications – had to unbolt the front of the passenger seat to get at one of the screws for one of the key panels for the dash. We also had to completely remove the centre console in the end because the gear indicator thing that shows if you’re in P, R, N, D, 3, 2, 1 had come out of it’s groove. On saturday we ended up with every screw we could find undone, but still unable to get to the key area behind the stereo head unit, so gave up.
I had a bit of a search around on Saturday night in a few forums etc, and eventually stumbled across this thread in the Street Commodore forums, which didn’t initially help me much as we’d already gotten much the same procedure done. I was stuck at what was their step 3. What that did show though was what the exact procedure was, so rather than guessing, I had a definite starting point for where to get the next part out/dismantled. On Sunday afternoon, I gave it a bit more of a pull with a bit more force, and the plastic lining pieces around the gear lever, and then the head unit’s bay came out. We were in business!
From there it took about another 2 hours to test all the wiring and make sure it all worked (including mutes for the ck3400, and steering wheel controls for the stereo etc) before trying to reassemble the car. In the end me and another friend got it all wired up and in. Thanks to Jesse for your help in getting those plugs in the back of the head unit right. They were VERY fiddly to get in without having excess wire in the head unit’s mounting bay so that it would go in properly.
At this time I also figured out how to fix the gear lever indicator thing, so while the car was apart, I removed the entire centre console, which was now quite easy with the plastic lining parts out, lifted up the gear lever section, and lined the indicator back into it’s groove in the bottom of the gear lever. It’s working again now.
Anyway, from there I started putting the car back together, the GPS receiver is getting it’s signal, and I tested the hands free part of it last night – that also works a treat. All in all a success. Just got one more panel left to reattach and a few screws to put back in the driver’s side footwell, then it’s completely done 🙂
Will post how well the GPS works when I install the necessary software on my M600.
(I intended to take some photos, but forgot, and I’m not pulling it apart again just to get photos!)
Edit: Installed TomTom Navigator on my phone about a week ago, and after a bit of fiddling, I seem to have found a procedure that works, and it works very well I must say. No more street directories for me 🙂