Veneering a Dashboard

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meadowhog
Posts: 391
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2011 1:50 pm
Location: South Bucks

Veneering a Dashboard

Post by meadowhog » Sun Jan 12, 2014 11:44 pm

My dash had unwante holes cut in it and the varnish was cracked. I was going attempt repairing it but when I got out the Nitromors it didnt touch it. Left it for hours, wiped it off but the varnish was still shiney. I decided to strip the veneer and start again. The decision to do this was only made after I found a gap filling glue.

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This is after I have chipped off the veneer with as chisel and used the scraper in the picture. I found chipping off 2-3mm at a time was the most effective. I was then left with what you see around the glove box. I then gave it a rub down with some 60 grit. Now the repair.

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Small bits glued in.

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Round hole plugged. Glued and knocked in. I made the dowl a nice tight fit.

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Made a patch and tapped in so it was pretty flush with the front. I took my time to ensure a tight fit.

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Then the router came out to cut down the back of the plug and open up the rear recess to accept a switch for the fan.


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Cut off the round peg and rubbed down. You can get an idea of how unperfect the backing board is.

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Now for the veneer. Burl walnut from ebay £30. You can see the glove box door I made from marine ply. Spent the time to get about a 2mm gap all round. Theres just enough veneer to do the back of the door too. I worried about the warp in the veneer but my research told me if you have less than 3mm gap under a 35mm distance it should be OK. Regardless I put the backing board ontop of the veneer and gave it a bit of gentle persuasion with some oak work top on top. Left it for a couple of days.

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Then drew around the dash and door with a pencil. Cut out the shapes with some scissors but used a craft knife for cutting the door front. Did this slowly, only once chance on this.

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Now for some glue. Tried the door first just to get a feel for it. Made sure the door was well rubbed down. I used Cascamite which is a urea-formaldehyde glue, sometimes called extramite or something mite. It has gap filling properties, is usable for upto an hour and doesn't stain the veneer. It is also water proof when set and once cured does not give or let the veneer peel away. I did think about the iron on sheets but the ufg glue was far better in all respects for this outdoor application, besides it was only £4. I mixed it up until it the consistancy of PVA.

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Stole some grease proof paper to put between the veneer and the ply I used for clamping.

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Now for the dash. Cut out a clamping board just over size so you can get clamps to where you need them.

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Another picture of how bad the front of the backboard is. I always worried about how good it had to be so I thought you may want to see this.

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Glued and clamped. I had to borrow some clamps. One thing I may have done differently is put some nice flat hardboard against the veneer to ensure a super flat surface for the veneer. Dont forget the grease proof paper.

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Removed the clamps after 5 hours. I would have left it for 6 but wanted to go to bed. I wanted to unclamp now rather than leave it over night because the excess glue that was squeezed out into the gauge holes made the veneer nice and soft to cut through with a knife. When this glue went hard it was very difficult to cut through.

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Holes now cut out.

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There were some small holes in the veneer which I think is quite common on Burl. I was hoping the glue would fill them. You can see some bleeding though of glue where there is a shine on the surface. Sorry, only used my phone for pictures so quality not as good as could have been.

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Lots of rubbing down now. 60 grit for the holes using something round to wrap the paper. Files and drills for the rest. The surface I used 120 to get it flat and finished off with 180, all by hand as vibros and orbitals I thought were to aggressive. Theres only one chance with it. Where the screws go I used a counter sink. Once happy, a quick wipe over with white spirit to get rid of any dust.

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Before the white spirit had completely dried I applied the first coat of varnish. I used Yacht Varnish which worked really well on another dash I'd done. I used a small foam roller. I did find some bubbles came up but managed to get rid of them by moving the roller quickly. This picture is with the second coat.

I'll update when I have more. More coates, polishing and hinges to fit.

Tomaselli
Posts: 941
Joined: Fri Sep 30, 2005 2:03 pm
Location: Cheshire, North West England

Post by Tomaselli » Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:23 pm

Great work there Simon, and I love the colour and grain on that veneer.

...& I knew you are a 'wizard' with metalwork, but also wonderful woodwork there. :mrgreen:

meadowhog
Posts: 391
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2011 1:50 pm
Location: South Bucks

Post by meadowhog » Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:40 pm

You want something don't you.

Seriously, in the flesh its not so yellow. Managed to get permission to bring it indoors to let the varnish dry a bit quicker. 6 degrees is not ideal but no flies to land on it.

Thanks for the comment Tony. Is it worth sticking in the Tech Tip section when finished.

Mal
Posts: 668
Joined: Sat Aug 02, 2008 5:39 am
Location: NZ

Post by Mal » Tue Jan 14, 2014 5:35 am

Looks good Simon. Nice that you had a good solid base to start with. I have never tried putting varnish on with a roller. Might give it a try next time.

What part does the green bottle with the turquoise top have to play in the restoration.
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meadowhog
Posts: 391
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2011 1:50 pm
Location: South Bucks

Post by meadowhog » Tue Jan 14, 2014 11:13 am

That reminds me, the dash was warped and had some delamination. I'll add in a bit about what I did.
The bottle was payment for a smelly lounge while the varnish dried. :wink:

Tomaselli
Posts: 941
Joined: Fri Sep 30, 2005 2:03 pm
Location: Cheshire, North West England

Post by Tomaselli » Tue Jan 14, 2014 9:58 pm

meadowhog wrote:Is it worth sticking in the Tech Tip section when finished.
I was indeed thinking the same, and having a section for member's to post up/list pics of their fixes.

meadowhog
Posts: 391
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2011 1:50 pm
Location: South Bucks

Post by meadowhog » Mon Feb 03, 2014 10:56 pm

Disaster. Its so cold the varnish didnt dry enough between coats and due to the dampness I got bluming so Ive peeled off the 12 coats. Yes peeled. Starting again after giving up on waiting for it to dry. On the third coat now but looking good.

Brad1380
Posts: 473
Joined: Wed Apr 27, 2011 1:38 pm

Post by Brad1380 » Sun Mar 16, 2014 1:05 pm

Nice work, i'm just about to buy some veneer for the Triumph dash, though i doubt i'll get that done before Le Mans this year.
1966 Sunbeam Tiger Mk1a

meadowhog
Posts: 391
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2011 1:50 pm
Location: South Bucks

Post by meadowhog » Sun Mar 16, 2014 10:28 pm

Thanks Brad,
Almost finished. More important things right now but I will update what I've learnt so others don't make the same mistakes ie. don't use any form of external varnish. It just doesn't go hard enough to polish. I guess yacht varnish was harder when I did it last-25 years+.

Warren
Posts: 29
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2011 8:07 am

Epoxy

Post by Warren » Mon Mar 17, 2014 12:01 am

I hear the outfit I think it's called Prestige that make a dashboard uses epoxy. I don't think that is the best as it is a easy one application process the edges chip easy. Having done boat varnish plenty if you can find some of the old non VOC compliant yacht varnish you'll have something that is harder to do but way more forgiving. Otherwise its a touch up with nail polish like on my epoxy dash.

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