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Old 04-01-2006, 04:00 AM   #1
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Default S-Series Audio Tutorial. (Deck, Wire/Cable, Door Speakers.)

Alright, since there isn't a full audio tutorial out there as far as I know... I took the liberty of photographing my install every so often to show how it's done.

Everything here applies exactly to third-generation (2001-2002) Saturn S-Series Coupes (SC, SC1, and SC2). It should correspond to other Saturn S-Series models to some degree or another.

This tutorial will cover the following:
1.) How to install a head unit.
2.) How to run power wire for an amplifier or multiple amplifiers.
3.) How to run RCA cables from your head unit to the trunk.
4.) How to remove the door panels.
5.) How to run speaker wires to your door speakers.
6.) Sound-deadening/heat-shielding your doors on an extreme budget.
7.) Installing a set of component speakers, stealthily.

Sometime I will update it to show how to do the following:
8.) How to upgrade your ground wires.

Remember, before working on anything electrical in your car, be sure to disconnect the battery! First unbolt and disconnect the ground cable. Only after the ground is disconnected, unbolt and disconnect the positive terminal.

Let's begin, shall we?

1.) Head Unit Install.

*Note* Before doing anything, I recommend getting a piece of paper and a pen/pencil, and writing down all your saved radio stations. */Note*

1A.) Remove the side air vent.

1B.) Lower your steering wheel to the bottom, lock it in place.
1C.) Pull off the main dash piece. Start with the area underneath the HVAC, it seems to be the easiest to unclip. There are five clips on the center part, and two clips on the far driver's side.

1D.) Now with all the clips loose, pull it towards you to clear of everything on the center side. Rotate the entire piece counter-clockwise, with the steering column as the rotation point. It will bend and make weird noises. Be careful, and use a wiggling motion while rotating it for the easiest removal.

1Da.) If you're uncomfortable with removing the dash piece this way, you can remove the plastic trim around the steering column. This is done by removing the screws on the underside of the column and separating the top and bottom pieces.

1E.) Now that the dash trim is removed, unscrew the head unit. It's held in by two 7mm bolts.

1F.) You should have the into-car wire harness (Metra Part Number 70-2002) already crimped onto your deck's wire harness. All the colors should match up fine.

Red = ACC On.
Yellow = Constant On.
Black = Ground.
White, White/Black, Grey, Grey/Black, Green, Green/Black, and Violet, Violet/Black are all speaker wires, crimp these each to their matching wires.
Either pull out or cut and protect the orange wires. Orange = Illumination, and will not be used with aftermarket decks.
Do not connect the blue or blue/white wire that comes from the deck. Our S-Series don't have power antenna's, so it doesn't need to connect to the factory harness. What this wire will be used for is an amplifier remote turn-on lead (if you have an amplifier).

1G.) You should also have your dash kit pre-assembled and have the deck mounted into it. There are several makers of dash kits, and they all come with their own instructions, so you're on your own when it comes to that.

1H.) Plug your deck wire harness into the deck. Plug your antenna lead into the deck. Plug the into-car wire harness into the vehicle's harness.

1I.) While putting the deck into the dash, push all the wires behind it downwards and out of the way. This prevents them from getting pinched behind the deck.

1J.) Reinstall the two 7mm bolts you removed earlier.

1K.) Put the dash trim piece on in the same fashion you removed it. Clip it in by firmly pushing directly onto the points where the clips are located.

1L.) Reinstall the side air vent. Note its position in the initial picture from step 1A.

2.) Running Amplifier Power Wire. (Start at step 2C if you're running a remote turn-on wire from your head unit.)

2A.) Cut two slits into your factory grommet, just between the two wire bundles that are run through it. Make it in the shape of a short, fat "T" for the easiest insertion. The lines are dotted in the picture since they're hidden lines (behind the factory wire harness). You'll want to cut two solid, intersecting slits.

2B.) Push the power wire through.

*Note* If the wire is too flexible for you to push through, get yourself a box-end wrench that can accomodate the size wire you're running through. From the inside, push the box-end of the wrench through the grommet, leaving the wrench halfway through. Thread the wire through the end of the wrench, have 4" or so running through. Go back inside and pull the wrench back into the car, the wire will come with. */Note*

2C.) Pull the wire clear of any moving objects. Specifically, the clutch pedal and all it's moving parts, it's definately the closest.

2D.) Remove the driver's side door sill trim panel. It's held on by various clips. Start at the very front, and work your way back. All the clips pull straight out. If looking at the car from a rear or front view, you'd be pulling them towards the passenger side.

2E.) Pull up the carpeting a bit, a layer of insulation will come with it. Run the wire underneath the carpeting/insulation, keeping it consistent with any curves in the floor.

2F.) Pull up the rear seat. This is accomplished by doing the following:

2Fa.) Reach underneath the rear corner of the seat, approximately where the tape measure is at in the first picture on step 2D. Pull up and towards the center of the car, the seats bend easy, so don't worry about breaking anything.

2Fb.) Find the rear seat center clip. Push it down and pull outwards to remove it from it's hold.

2Fc.) Now the seat bottom should seem hinged at the front. Pull up on the rear of the seat to tilt it upwards, then push the front of it towards the rear of the car to unhook it. The seat bottom should now be released.

2G.) Thread the wires underneath the large plastic part that resides underneath the seat cushion. Follow the factory wires that go underneath there.

2H.) Push the wire up under the rear seatback and into the trunk.

2I.) Reinstall the rear seat cushion.

2J.) Reinstall the door sill trim piece, making sure all the carpeting is tucked underneath it.

3.) Running RCA cables.

3A.) Remove the head unit, start at Step 1A if you're unsure how.

3B.) Plug your RCA cables into the rear of the head unit.

*Note* If you're running more than one pair of cables, be sure to mark which one is front, which is rear, and which is sub. I simply wrapped a single piece of tape around my front pair, just to distinguish them from the rears. */Note*

3C.) Thread the opposite end of the cables down through the dash, making sure to avoid any sharp metal edges and trying your best to keep it away from any large power wire bundles.

3D.) Pull the free end of the cables back to the backseat, between the driver's seat (and seatbelt harness) and the center console. Now tuck the wire underneath the plastic of the center console, keeping it low to avoid interfering with the shifter mechanisms.

3E.) Remove the center armrest. There are four screws total holding it in. I was very relieved to find out that I didn't have to empty out the compartment and mess with screws inside it.

3F.) Once you have the armrest removed, note the silver box with the yellow wire loom and connectors... Do NOT touch this box and/or its wiring! It's the airbag sensor and could cause you some serious injury, or at the least, require you to install a new airbag and put up with the nice smoky/sooty smell that blown airbags cause.

3G.) With the rear seat cushion pulled up (or removed), reach your arm underneath the carpeting, coming in from the rear. If you don't know how to remove the rear seat cushion, see Step 2F and it's substeps.

*Note* An easier way of accomplishing Step 3G is to use a wire clothes hangar, stretched out with a small loop on one end. Push the looped end under the carpeting from the rear. When you can see the loop, thread the RCA's through the loop, and simply pull the hangar back out from the rear. Since I exclusively use plastic hangars, I had to squeeze my arm underneath the tight-fitting carpet. Not a very enjoyable feat, but not impossible (unless you have tree trunks for forearms). */Note*

3H.) Once your cables are pulled through the carpeting, run them underneath the seatback into the trunk, keeping them away from any power cables.

3I.) Reinstall the rear seat cushion, center armrest, and head unit (Step 1I).

4. Removing The Door Panels.

4A.) Pop off the mirror cover.

4B.) Remove the #2 Phillips screw you just uncovered by removing the mirror cover.

4C.) Remove the plastic retention pin at the rear end of the door.

4D.) Remove the three #2 Phillips screws near the center of the door panel.

4Da.) Slide the lock/handle assembly forwards and pull it loose.

4E.) Unclip the two retention clips from the door handle and lock.

4F.) Remove the power door lock switch. Pinch the two tabs together with your fingers. They may make a clicking sound when they release. While you're pinching them together, push the button/switch out of the handle assembly.

4G.) After all screws and clips are undone, simply lift the door panel straight upwards and place it somewhere safe.

5. Running Speaker Wires To Doors.

5A.) Remove door panels, see step 4.

5B.) Remove the under-dash panel, several 7mm bolts I believe.

5Ba.) Remove the hood release from the under-dash panel. Four 10mm speed nuts are used if I remember correctly.

5C.) Remove the kickpanels and door sill trim pieces. See step 2D for details.

5D.) Insert speaker wire into the interior door grommet, wiggle it through until you can pull it through to the door. This takes time and patience. You
can also use a wire clothes hanger stretched out to make things go faster.
See *Note* from step 3G for more information on the clothes hanger.

6. Sound Deadening/Heat Shielding On A Hardcore Budget.

6A.) Go to Home Depot, Lowes, or any other home improvement store. Buy a roll of reflective insulation (bubble-wrap covered in aluminum-foil), a few sticks of foam pipe insulation (I bought polyethylene due to the better smooshability), and a couple cans of spray adhesive (3M's 77 works great).
All this shouldn't cost you more than $50.

6B.) Remove the door panels. Check out step 4 if you're stumped.

6C.) Peel off the plastic garbage-bag like covering from the metal door frame. Clean any and all dust off of the metal.

6D.) Unroll some reflective insulation and test fit it against the metal door frame. Cut to size. Spray a nice coating of adhesive onto the door where insulation will be. Spray a matching coat onto the insulation. Press insulation onto the sprayed area, hold for several seconds. Maximize the holding area by pressing the insulation into any bends, folds, or dips in the metal door panel. I'd recommend doing at least two layers of insulation where possible.

6E.) Feel free to layer some insulation on the plastic door panel as well.

6F.) Line the outside edges of the plastic door panel with the foam pipe insulation. Also seal around air-leak areas on the metal door frame with pipe insulation. Line the edge of the speaker hole with pipe insulation, then bolt speaker on top of the foam for a rattle-free seal. Feel free to use excess pipe insulation as padding wherever rattles may be present.

6G.) When finished, be sure to cut appropriate holes in the insulation for the plastic door panel to hook back into position.

6H.) Be aware that when reinstalling the plastic door panel, the fit will be more snug and may require a bit more force to get it in position.

7. Installing Door Speakers (Components).

7A.) Figure out how you wish to mount your tweeters. I personally wanted everything inside to look as close to stock as possible, so I found a way to mount my components coaxially using parts from the stock speakers.

7B.) Pry off the plastic tweeter adapter from the stock speakers, a flathead screwdriver works great.

7C.) Disconnect the tweeters from the woofer by melting the solder.

7D.) Verify that the tweeter adapter matches the mounting locations of your new woofers.

7E.) Remove the factory tweeters (I chose to melt/cut them out with a cheap soldering iron and a knife).

7F.) Cut the tweeter holes until your new tweeters fit mostly flush.

7G.) Cut a notch out of the adapter to allow the tweeter wires access outside.

7H.) Verify that your woofers are deep enough to accomodate a floating tweeter.

7I.) Shameless advertising. Mount the tweeters. I used two-part epoxy.

7J.) Mount the woofer/tweeter combination in your door, making sure that your woofers aren't too deep and hit your windows. The factory speaker screws should be long enough to still grab with the tweeter adapter on top of your woofer.

7K.) Mount your crossover. There is a small indent underneath the mirror cover, I chose to mount my crossover there. Also, I used Velcro, yes, Velcro to mount the crossover. You can easily see how I ran the wires to and from the crossover in the following picture.

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Old 04-02-2006, 06:22 PM   #2
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Very nice....

Great job satyllac!
Originally Posted by my99sl1
(now now, brandon, didnt your mommy teach you how to share?)
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Old 06-02-2006, 11:45 PM   #3
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Updated to include the following:

Door panel removal.
Running speaker wire to doors.
Cheap sound deadening.
Door speaker installation.
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Old 12-03-2006, 12:05 AM   #4
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Damn man, I could never have the patience to write all that. But good job, It will help me when I get enough money to put a system in, It will also save me like $400 to have a pro one put in.
To be the best, You have to beat the best.. So far, No one has beat me yet.

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My other car I just bought, It's a fixer upper.

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