360 Monster Car Audio Install by Scuderia Audio - Ferrari Life
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post #1 of 33 Old 01-02-2015, 08:59 PM Thread Starter
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Monster Car Audio Install by Scuderia Audio

So I finally had some time over the holiday break to work on my own car. Assembling a large car stereo is not rocket science, but doing it without any cutting or drilling or any modifications to the car takes some creative thinking.
I started out by purchasing 5 Arc Audio 500.1 amplifiers and 1 Arc Audio 125.4 amplifiers for a total of 3000 Watts. Each of the 10 JL Audio 8" subwoofers is rated at 250 Watts, and that's exactly what each one will receive. So that's 2500 Watts for the subs, and the remaining 500 Watts for the Arc Audio Black Series midrange and tweeters.
I went to Tap Plastics and had a 1/2" thick piece of polyethylene cut 28 3/4" x 25" if I recall correctly. I had my (machinist) brother bend me some aluminum brackets that would hold the amp board and mount to the car using the existing metric rivnuts on each side of the bottom of the trunk that hold the side trunk liner pieces to the car. The brackets were covered with suede and the board test fitted.
With 3000 Watts of power, you definitely need more batteries. I purchased a couple of the Braille b106 racing batteries, almost 300 cranking amps apiece and less than 7 pounds apiece. I removed the container that holds the can of fix-a-flat from the trunk (who would use that stuff anyway??) and drilled out the cheap rivets that hold the leather straps. The rivets were replaced with metric, black anodized allen panhead machine screws. Even though you cannot see either the pop rivets or the machine screws when the container is in place, the machine screws look much better than the pop rivets and are stronger as well. In 10 minutes I can have the straps bolted back in and the bag for the fix-a-flat back in place.
I made a pattern out of cardboard that follows the concave contour of the back wall, then made a similar pattern out of MDF. I cut several pieces of the MDF, bonded them all together with polyurethane, finish sanded and test mounted using the existing holes that previously accommodates the pop rivets for the leather straps.
I went to a metal supply warehouse and picked up some .080" thick aluminum scrap, went to the tech shop, sheared off a piece to size, then used the notcher and the box brake to construct a tray to hold the two batteries. The tray holder bolts to the back plastic piece using machine screws, and the battery box bolts to the tray holder using machine screws.
Before any of this, I stepped into the trunk, put one foot on the rear shelf (where the fix-a-flat goes), put my other foot on top of the first foot, then basically bounced up and down to see what would happen. The plastic piece is so thick and bolted so securely that I was able to put over 200 pounds of force on the shelf without a single flex or squeak, so I'm sure that holding two 6 1/2" pound batteries is not going to be a big deal.
Next up is getting the shelf and battery box wrapped in suede, mounting the amplifier board, and making covers for both. I haven't decided whether to go for plain, functional covers or wild, backlit designs.
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post #2 of 33 Old 01-02-2015, 09:01 PM Thread Starter
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More photos.
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post #3 of 33 Old 01-02-2015, 09:13 PM
 
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Looks great so far Mike. Keep the pictures coming.
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post #4 of 33 Old 01-03-2015, 05:58 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy B View Post
Looks great so far Mike. Keep the pictures coming.


Thanks!
For those of you not familiar with the website (www.scuderiaaudio.com), this is what my subwoofer enclosure looks like.
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post #5 of 33 Old 01-04-2015, 10:12 AM
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post #6 of 33 Old 01-04-2015, 06:25 PM Thread Starter
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Today I whipped up the battery tie down plate. I couldn't find a three inch tall standoff today (Sunday, everything's closed) so tomorrow I'll CNC the top bar and install the correct standoffs.
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post #7 of 33 Old 01-08-2015, 01:17 PM Thread Starter
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The standoffs finally came in. Four inch high hex standoffs are not easy to find. Also, I had a 1/4" thick piece of polyethylene cut, and I radiused the edges and drilled holes in each end for the top bar.
Can't wait to get home tonight and assemble the components.
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post #8 of 33 Old 01-08-2015, 01:23 PM
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post #9 of 33 Old 01-08-2015, 02:35 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wetpet View Post
pretty easy if you have google

McMaster-Carr
Funny guy! :-)
I meant locally. I eventually used McMaster.
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post #10 of 33 Old 01-09-2015, 07:53 AM Thread Starter
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Not fancy, but functional and basically bulletproof. My upholstery guy has offered to wrap the wooden base in a matching black material today. This was very generous of him as he is trying to finish up the upholstery for a show car and is on a crazy schedule right now.
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post #11 of 33 Old 01-10-2015, 08:46 PM Thread Starter
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Okay sorry about the crappy pictures. Next up is making a pattern for the piece that fits on top of the amplifiers. This piece will have six rectangular cutouts with radiused edges to showcase the amplifiers, and will be upholstered in something, I haven't figured out what yet.
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post #12 of 33 Old 01-11-2015, 08:16 PM Thread Starter
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So today I whittled down a piece of cardboard until it fit snug over the amplifiers. From this I created a drawing, then a cutting file, then cut a cheap piece of 1/4" plywood. The bit got hung up before it could cut the last two cutouts, but this was more than enough to ensure that the drawing was correct. You can see the humps of the Arc Audio medallions under the tape and can see that the drawing is correct. Now I can use the same cutting file to CNC the ABS plastic into the same shape. One more step is required, to cut a pocket around the amplifier cutouts to that the upholstery material can be wrapped around the edges. I do the same thing with the amplifier cradles for the 360 and 430.
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post #13 of 33 Old 01-13-2015, 01:06 AM Thread Starter
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The CNC router is booked up all week, but a nice person let me sneak in there at 11PM tonight and cut my ABS piece. They were closing up and ran me out of there before I could cut the tabs off and finish sand, but I can easily do that tomorrow after work.
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post #14 of 33 Old 01-13-2015, 09:43 PM Thread Starter
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Okay, the top piece is complete and fits perfectly. I need to make another one just like it only thicker and with no holes. Both of these pieces will snap in and out with ball/socket fasteners. The thin one will be wrapped with leather with clear polycarbonate "windows" to showcase the amplifiers, and when I am not showing the car, the thicker solid piece will snap in in place of the windowed one to provide a false floor for the trunk so I can carry things.
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post #15 of 33 Old 01-14-2015, 06:22 AM
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This is seriously cool to see how the sausage is made! Thanks for posting this thread
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post #16 of 33 Old 01-18-2015, 12:25 AM Thread Starter
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Well, there was an "issue" with the top cover plate. It was too flimsy. The 1/4" ABS wasn't cutting it. I tested a piece of 3/8" and it wasn't any more rigid. Since I can't find any 1/2" ABS (and Plexiglas is too brittle and you can't glue anything to polyethylene), I opted for some 1/2" polycarbonate. Super expensive but the 1/2" piece doesn't flex and it is unbreakable. I cut the polycarbonate using the same Auto CAD file (slightly different cutting file) and am happy with the results. I cut a similar piece, only solid (no holes to display the amps). The hogged out piece will serve as the top cover when I am showing the system and the solid piece will take its place as a sturdy false floor for everyday use.
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post #17 of 33 Old 01-23-2015, 11:18 PM Thread Starter
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So now that both polycarbonate covers are complete, I started working on the cover for the batteries. I made a template out of cardboard and painters tape and will be cutting the actual cover out of some sort of plastic. I need it to be stiff, doesn't matter if it's brittle as I won't be drilling any holes in it, but I need to bend it near the top.
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post #18 of 33 Old 01-26-2015, 11:01 AM Thread Starter
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So what I did was make two brackets that are on either side of the battery box, drilled a hole in each bracket, then epoxied two Plexiglas blocks onto the inside of the cover on the bottom (after machining a 3/8" hole in them) then pressed in short Plexiglas rods. You place the cover over the battery case about an inch too high, then slide it straight down. The rods slide into their respective holes and it keeps the cover in place. I purchased some small magnets last night, and ordered a piece of low carbon steel bar this morning. I'll epoxy the magnets inside the cover on the top edge, then drill two holes in the end of the bar and mount onto the back of the battery box. Then, when the cover is slid down into place, the magnets will grab the steel bar and lock the entire cover into place.
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post #19 of 33 Old 01-26-2015, 11:03 AM Thread Starter
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As a side note, I'm considering mass producing the battery box holder and the Plexiglas cover for people who want to mount an amplifier in the trunk. All you'd have to do is bolt the amp holder where the spare tire kit does (into the existing holes), bolt your amplifier to the holder, then slide the cover into place. The cover would be wrapped in the same material that the trunk is lined with.
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post #20 of 33 Old 02-07-2015, 06:29 PM Thread Starter
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I know it's been awhile since I've updated this thread, but I have been working on a few things. The idea with the magnets holding the top of the battery cover wasn't working. My upholstery guy suggested two more pins above the original two, and this worked out perfectly.


Most of my recent efforts have been trying to solve the problem of where to install the equalizer (which is a 1/2 DIN unit). After much head scratching, the solution was to construct a "super cradle", similar to my original cradles but with the ability to hold the equalizer. See the details in the "super cradle" thread.
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