Installing a Head-Unit Into a VT-VX Commodore
In this article i will explain how to install an aftermarket head-unit into a VT-VX Commodore. As many will know these Commodores use a "double DIN" factory stereo, the double DIN means its double the size of a standard stereo head-unit (DIN). To overcome this i use a single DIN pocket, mounted below the new stereo.
Remove the standard stereo.
You'll notice two holes on either side of the stereo, using two lengths of coathanger bent into "U" shapes, insert into these holes about 25-30mm like this picture shows:
Now while these are inserted, push each wire outwards whilst pulling towards you. This will release the clips holding the unit in place and allow it to be removed. Once its released, remove the coathanger wires and unplug the unit (including the antenna plug).
Wiring the new loom into the old.
This step will explain how to "splice" your new stereos wiring into the factory loom, without cutting off the stock plug. This allows for the original stereo to be re-fitted at a later date if required. If your wanting to use a harness adapter, please skip this step and just plug it in.
Firstly, remove the black electrical tape immediately behind the plug which will reveal the individual wires, it'll look something like this:
Then using some wire strippers, strip just the insulation off one wire at a time (5-10mm is enough). Solder the new wire to the stock wire and insulate using electrical tape. Here's a pic with the constant and accessories power connected and the earth about to be soldered:
Repeat this step for every required wire, see below for wiring colours:
Accesories - Yellow
Constant - Orange/White (sometimes Orange/Purple)
Illumination - Brown/White
Earth - Black/White
Power Antenna - Yellow/Red
Front Left (+) - Tan
Front Left (-) - Grey
Front Right (+) - Light/Green
Front Right (-) - Dark/Green
Rear Left (+) - Brown/Black
Rear Left (-) - Yellow/Blue
Rear Right (+) - Blue/Orange
Rear Right (-) - Blue/Black
Once each wire has been connected / insulated, wrap some electrical tape around the whole loom to neaten it up and add some extra strength to the connections. It should end up looking like this:
Mounting the new unit.
Now, theres several ways to do this. The method used here is the easiest i know of, while it dosent provide a really solid mounting it still holds the unit in place just fine for as long as required and allows the unit to be removed fairly easy for adding RCA cables etc.
I use the mounting "cradle" that comes with every aftermarket head-unit, it looks a little like this:
This part can be difficult, as the cradle is a touch too big for the dash cavity. But if you bend the top edge of the cradle it brings in the sides and allows it to slide in easier. But yes, just slide the unit into the top half of the dash cavity, it will require some force.....but be careful as the cradle can have sharp edges and may cut your hands as you push it in.
The end result (you can straighten up the top edge once its fitted):
Fitting the new unit.
Pull the new wiring loom through the cradle and plug it into the new stereo, dont forget the antenna plug!
Now just insert the new stereo into the cradle and push it in. Its a good idea to remove the face of the new unit just to be sure you dont damage it. Also put your hand in under the cradle and gently pull the wiring loom down under the cradle so it dosent get caught up behind the unit, this will restrict the unit from going in the whole way as there isnt much depth in there. Once youve got it in just replace the face and the plastic surround (if you took it off).
Fitting the single DIN pocket.
Using one of these:
Insert it into the cavity below the stereo, you'll notice it has a clip on either side that will lock it into place. So its just a matter of pushing it in until the clips grab.
The finished product: