When I first bought my van I knew I wanted to fit a decent sound system. I already had a set of nice component speakers with tweeters and crossovers and a decent Sony headunit. I sourced an amp and good quality cabling from a friend and set about planning the install. I was determined to make a good job of it, so I decided to take the dashboard off and hide it all behind it.

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I spent two days installing the system. I routed all the cabling with the existing loom under the dashboard, I fitted the crossovers in the footwells under the dash and fabricated a special bracket so the amp could go above the steering column; the only space behind the dash big enough to accommodate the amp and still have enough airflow around it to keep it cool. It was immensely time consuming but after many skinned knuckles, it was finished. With it all hidden nicely beneath the dash the only sign that it was a decent system was the headunit fascia and the tweeters poking out at the top of the A-pillars.

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It’s by far the neatest and most comprehensive car audio sound system install I’ve ever done, so you can imagine my frustration when just four months later I had to rip it all out again.
I need to sell the van and I want to keep the system to put in my VW camper, so I spent this morning disassembling the dash and pulling it all out again. I’ve had quite a bit of practice dismantling the dashboard in that van now, so to take the dashboard out, remove the sounds system and replace the dash only took me two hours.
I’m still trying to work out if there’s a lesson to be learned from all this.

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