My Insight

July 1, 2002

Well, I did it. I couldn't stand driving my gas-guzzling truck much longer, so on June 28th, 2002, I broke down and bought a new 2002 Honda Insight. It's silver, with the CVT 'automatic' transmission. Yes, I paid under MSRP.

Now the fun begins.

July 15, 2002

First off, I went over to the local window tint place and got their all-metallic tint, which should cut the heat in the car by over 50% - a necessity here in Texas.

The next weekend (July 5, I think), I went and got some Eclipse 6.5" speakers (82641's) to replace the front speakers - the radio sounds *much* better now. Note: no wire clipping or soldering needed! The honda speakers attach via a large grey plug that, if looked at carefully, can be taken apart to release two captured standard spade-lugs... which can then be slipped directly onto the contacts of the new speakers.

(I couldn't find a webpage on Eclipse speakers, but the specs I could find say: R:4 ohm Continuous Power Handling: 40W Music Power Handling: 80W Frequency Response: 90-20,000Hz Sensitivity: 96dB Mica-Filled Polypropylene Cone (MFP) Butyl Rubber Surround Kapton Voice Coil Former Mylar Dome Tweeter Tweeter Magnet: Neodymium Woofer Magnet: Ferrite Tweeter Protection Circuit 1-7/8 Mounting Depth ...which doesn't mention the best feature, which is that the tweeter is pointed *up* such that less of the sound runs straight into your ankles and more is aimed at your ears. )

I also got a set of TireMinders, which is the cheap alternative to something like the SmartTire system mentioned below. Someday...

July 29, 2002

Ordered both the cruise control and the seat covers today! (ETAs of a week and a month respectively)

Aug 12, 2002

Nothing's arrived! WetOkole says they're shipping out today, and a bit of finagling has my cruise control parts coming in from two different companies (one on each coast), shipping out today. Hopefully I'll have parts tomorrow.

Aug 14, 2002

All my cruise control parts got here yesterday! Hopefully should install them tonight.

Sep 1, 2002

With a friend's help, I installed my cruise control on the 15th and then for a test drive went down to Rockport to go fishing with my dad. I got 51mpg on the way down using cruise control, and used the trip back to test what I would get manually (56mpg).

Also, recently I found out that the honda-insight yahoogroup that I'd been trying to join was mildly broken, and most people had moved over to the honda-hybrid yahoo group. So now I'm there keeping up with the latest news and toys and info. One such piece of info is that there are a couple other places to get parts from besides the dealer. Which is good, because I was less than impressed with the guys behind the parts counter.

Oh, and my seat covers got here on the 19th I think... they're nice, quite comfy. The only downside is that they cover up the pocket on the back of each seat... and one thing the Insight does not need is less storage.

Sep 3, 2002

I bought an empeg/Riocar in-dash linux computer from ebay this weekend... I should get it sometime this week. Then I'll need to get an amp to power the speakers since the empeg only has line-level outs. One place has come up with a bracket to mount an amp on that then fits under the seat... since I'm all about not modifying the car if possible, this sounds like a good idea.

Sep 5, 2002

The empeg hasn't shown up yet, but I went ahead and ordered the service manuals: the 2000 Insight manual (Part# 61S3Y00) and the 2002 Insight Service Manual Supplement (Part# 61S3Y03) from Helm, Inc.

Sep 8, 2002

Got my RioCar on Friday! Now to get the mounting plate and the amp and all the cabling together...

Sep 30, 2002

I got my amp in last week (it's an Eclipse 36401 I think), so I spent Saturday getting it mounted and Sunday running the wires and installing the wiring harness - hopefully I'll be able to finish it up tonight or tomorrow...
Specs on the Eclipse (Fujitsu) 36401 are:
# 4/3/2 Channels
# 105 x 4 Channel Max. Power Output at 2 Stereo
# 60 x 4 Channel 0.1% THD at 2 Stereo @13.8V (RMS Continuous Power)
# 40 x 4 Channel 0.1% THD at 4 Stereo @13.8V (RMS Continuous Power)
# ChannelFlex Crossover
# Adjustable High-Pass Frequency (50 - 200Hz, L/R Independant)
# Low-Pass Frequency (120Hz)
# Adjustable Bass-Boost Level (45Hz, 0 - 9dB, F/R Separate)
# High-Current, High-Speed Output Devices
# High-Efficiency, High-Energy MOS FET Power Supply
# Audiophile Grade Component Selection
# Intelligent 7-Way Discrete Protection Circuitry
# Noise Reduction with Low Distortion & Ultra-Low Negative Feedback
# High-Level Input - Add on Capability
# Expoxy Composit PCB
# 2 Stable Design

Oct 2, 2002

I got the cage installed last night (this was a pain because the brackets to mount it in the Insight want to be mounted on the centerline of the cage... which makes the inside side of the bolts block the unit from sliding into the cage, unless you file down said bolts...). All that's left is to hook up main power to the amp - I've procured an in-line 30A fuse, now all I need is some more time to do it.

Dec 30, 2002

Long time no update since I've been listening to the tunes... I'm missing some few trivial parts to be able to hook up a GPS to the empeg... and I just found out that empeg tuners will soon be available again in kit form, so I'll have to put one down as my christmas present to myself :)

Still left to get: