Welcome to the Future...
My personal "definition" of a "hobby" is as follows: If it ever gets to a point of being finished, then it's not a hobby...
Is my stereo done? Heh... Hell no. It's at a good stage but it'll never be finished. I've always got ideas bouncing around in my noggin for things to change, add, improve, remove, or whatever! That's what makes Car Audio a "hobby" for me. That, and I just love working on my car and stereo.
Idea #1: Center Channel Volume:
Well, parts for this one are already purchased. Once spring rolls around (being
mid-winter here in New Hampshire, the ground's covered with snow and the car's stored away
and off the insurance) I am going to re-do the center channel. The Shack finally got me a
stereo volume control. It's a really nice piece... Weighs about a pound! Supposed to be
a really good one. No casing or box or anything. Just a circuit board with speaker terminals
and two great big coils and a volume knob coming off one side. The knob has screw-backing
so it can be mounted through a simple 1/4" hole. I've already scoped out the place for it...
There's a little recessed "pocket" if you will right in front of the head unit where I
intend to mount it. I'll have to rig up some kind of backing to keep it steady but that
shouldn't take more than a bracket or two. I also already have new 3.5" drivers to replace
the ones in there and higher-crossed-over bass-blockers to put on them. A couple of SPL's
and those baby's were toast... But anyway, having the volume control will defintely allow
me to 1) run the center channel in the first place, 2) let me adjust it to my preference
based on the music without having to dig down to the amp, and 3) not fry more 3.5" speakers
when I'm doing bass demos, SPL tests, or just blasting the hell outta Van Halen.
Idea #1-a: Center Channel Tweets:
A corollary to working with the center channel, I want to tinker with adding
a set of tweeters into the factory locations way up on the dash. The factory ones are still
in there but are not hooked up to anything. I wanna try them and run them off the center
channel amp at the lower volume. I think it may help with the staging and imaging by having
a light fill in the upper end of the sonic spectrum in the corners of my dash.
Idea #2: More Neon... As if I really need it! But I LOVE lights! I've already bought an 8" strip of blue neon which I intend to integrate into the center console somwhere. My initial and back to current idea is to hollow out a little space right above the head unit and climate control unit (that little TV-like screen) and hide it up in there so it shines down onto the radio and center console. I plugged it in and just kinda held it there and it looked really cool lighting up that area like that. One idea that bounced around (and hasn't been ruled out) was to install it inside the center air vents above the center speakers to highlight those. I may still get some little blue 12V interior lights and add in there...
Idea #3: Rebuild the hatch area: Yikes! That's a helluva project. Yeah, but I want to give it a cleaner more finished look. I've already got a buyer for the box (no the speakers or lights, just the box). I want to build an all new one, but still use the same speakers. I just love the pounding Rockford Power 10's. I have every intention of continuing to utilize the blacklights and neon paint in a windowed enclosure. May get fancier this time around with the painting of the inside, too.
Idea #4: Remount the amps: I wanna remount the amps in the back seats to flush them in better and the surrounds need rebuilding anyway. They've been removed just about one time too many...
Idea #5: New headlights:
Since I have the first generation Stealth, I have the pop-up headlights which use generic
165mm rectangular bulbs. I absolutely LOVE the new blue-ion headlights you see running
around on some cars. So I tracked down and bought a conversion adapter kit for the bulbs
and then 2 blue-ion H-4 80/100 watt bulbs. The adapters are standard 165mm rectangular size
but they're just a housing allowme to plug in a standard H-4 size bulb. Once I get those in,
I gotta find out what kind of bulb is in the fogs, wanna get either blue-ion bulbs of those
if they use some standard size or replace them with some fogs that are the blues.
Idea #6: Non-stereo related: Well, the car's odo is just shy of 56,000 miles, so first thing after getting it out of storage will be to get the 60k service done - timing belt and tensioner, H2O pump, plugs and wires, belts and hoses, etc.... Not to mention the right front tire is flat, the current set has over 28k miles on it so new rubber is in order. IDEALLY I'd like to get some 18" chrome to wrap new rubber around but I don't know if the finances are going to allow for that... Completed! 7/1/98 - Well, partially anyway... I got the 60k service and timing belt and all done. Cost a pretty penny but it's done now. Finally got some new rubber on there too. MAN did it ever need new tires! Mine were close to passing for indy-style racing slicks... Mail ordered a set of 4 Pirelli P7000 SuperSports 245/50/16 from Discount Tire Direct (www.tires.com) for $105 each, added roadhazard adn shipping and it was all less that $500 to my door. Haven't put a lot of miles on them yet but they seem to be pretty good. Obviously no 18" chromies yet... Those are a LONG way off. NO money right now... Ah well...
Idea #7: Non-stereo related: I've been wanting 18" chrome wheels ever since I got my first look at the factory VR-4 wheels. Man those are just amazingly beautiful and classy wheels!! Completed! 7/1/99 - Look at that - exactly one year later... WOOOO-HOOOOOOOO!!!! Finally got my chromies!! MAN! They look sweet on my car! After 2.5 years of wanting and secretly/non-chalantly looking, I tracked down a deal I couldn't pass up. Got me a set of Mitsubishi factory VR-4 18" chrome wheels, WITH tires and lugnuts for... Guess... $1300!!! Can we say deal!?! (steal! Thanks Scott! ;-) Tracked them down on the Net from a guy in Chicago that has a 97 VR-4 and didn't wanna deal with 18's in the winter so got a nice set of 17's and was offloading the 18's to recoup some of the cost. He listed them on Ebay (man I love Ebay!). I made an offer and we settled where we did. Those things totally changed both how the car looks (totally awesome) and how it handles (the word "rails" comes to mind...) Oh, yeah, after putting on the new wheels, you could actually see the brake calipers, so I finally painted them a bright red. Talk about looking sweet...
Anyway, as you can see, I've got a lot on the plate to do as far as ideas. And these are just the ones I could think of right now... There's probably others that I have forgotten for the moment. You got any ideas you wanna inject into my head? Go back to the main stereo page and send me an email! I'd love to hear from ya...