|we butcher your wiring|
Old Radio? Older Radio?
So, I called up the local VW dealer and asked for the unlock code. After a few days of run around, they asked for the serial number and a VIN for a VW to demonstrate I was an actual VW owner. At least that's what the internet and VW led me to believe. After trying the code they provided, the stereo locked out. I called them back, they told me that they needed the VIN for the radio-provider car.
Apparently, the dealer will give you the unlock code for a stereo if you can provide to them both the serial number from the side of the radio and the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) for the car from which it came. It seems that their system is only capable of looking up an unlock code from the VIN. Uber-dumb. So, I;m not really sure why they ask for the serial code, but either way, I didn't have the VIN from the junkyard. NOTE TO OTHERS: if you're going to pluck a stock/original stereo from a VW/Audi built after the early 90's, get the VIN when you're there. Better yet, look for the owners manual and take the page with the unlock code on it. If the manual is there, the unlock code page probably is too.
I looked up the junkyard inventory system and found the 3 cars which were on the lot the day I pulled the stereo. I provided VW those three VIN's, but they decided that since I couldn't provide the single VIN, I must be a thief and told me not to call back. Jeez. Maybe the smog testing scandal isn't enough to drive business away. Thanks Herzog Meier.
Wiring the Microphone
|wiring the radio harness|
To make room, I removed the little-stuff pocket/shelf in the center console under the vents. To route the microphone, I removed the plastic cover over the steering column (2 Phillips bolts from the underside) and the underdash (2 star-bolts, one each over the accelerator and brake pedals). Shining a flashlight into the stereo hole, I could see the pass-through. I simply threaded the microphone wire through the pass-through and then set the microphone. The mic delivered with a little clip, so I hooked that in the center of my dash, between the gauges. The wire ran under the steering column cover, along the underside of the dash through the hole with lots of extra wire to spare. I re-installed the panels.
I tested everything by wiring it all up and placing a test phone call to Boo. She was making mince-meat turn-overs (yummy), but the call demonstrated the phone part was set up. The radio worked too. In order to install into the dash, I needed to unplug everything and then, using the included steel frame, set the hole for the stereo. The steel frame is the same width and height as the stereo, but only an inch and a half deep. It has many little tangs on it so it will fit in many types of openings. Set the frame in the hole such that the front lip is against the leading edge of the hole. Then, with a screwdriver, test various tangs until you can find a few that bend into holes around the stereo hole within the dash. These will hold the stereo in place. Test that you've secured it by pulling and pushing on the frame. Figure, you will be pushing and pulling the detachable face on and off thousands of times, so you want that frame solid.
|shows the steel frame|
That's it for today. I was comprehensive on the install to show that it installing a stereo isn't hard. Anyone can do it. Don't take your prized vehicle to the CarToy Clowns. Do it yourself. Or, if you don't have time, get the pigtail and have the neighbor kid do it. S/He will do as good a job or better than CarToys will, and you keep the money local. Next time, I'll start a short series of posts about a trip to Lake Tahoe and Denver I took a few weeks ago. More travel is coming after that, so it might be a little while before I get back to Hapy the wonderbus. As always, thanks for following along-