In a message dated 96-07-28 17:55:35 EDT, email@example.com (Mark and
Judy Dalmaijer) writes:
<< My brother-in-law and I plan on removing our dashboards in our MG TD and
(respectively) and either putting on new venneer or making new ones. Does
anyone have any experience doing either? My brother-in-law swears he once
saw an ad for a template of dashboards for $5-10; does anyone know the
where-abouts of the company? What are the preferred methods to renew a dash?
What type of material is typically used -- solid wood, plywood...types of
wood...? What finishes give the best results which last the longest?
As you can see we have a lot to learn but are eager to make this our fall
or winter project. Any and all advise would greatly appreciated!! >>
A number of years ago when I took the dashboard out of my TR6, I thought it
needed a new venneer or perhaps replacement. I had all the same questions you
have, so I took it to a professional woodworker that I knew at the time and I
learned a lot. It turns out that his partner had made several highly
unsuccessful attempts to produce replacement wooden dashboards. From his
hard-earned experience (not to be confused with my own limited knowledge) I
can offer the following advice : DO NOT USE SOLID WOOD. After you park it in
the hot sun for a while and then drive it around firmly attached to your
flexing, vibrating LBC it will CRACK badly and dramatically. When you get
yours out and look at from the edge you will probably see that it is plywood
with many thin plys...er...layers..whatever ...In any case if you want to
construct a replacement, whatever you use needs to be of this quality, i.e.
strength and resistance to the aforementioned catastrophic cracking. If the
wood you take out of the car is basically sound, reveneering or refinishing
is probably the better option. I my case (after I had already picked out a
nice veneer ) what I had thought was old veneer chiping off turnrd out to be
the old finish chiping off, so I refinished it. General consensus seems to be
that some type of spar varnish is thing to use.
I believe several people on the list have successfully reveneered their
dashes, hopefully someone will post how they did it and what type of contact
cement they used to survive sun exposure.