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  • 1 Post By blue sky

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Old 10-04-2014, 06:10 AM
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Default Leather

I'm planning to glue new leather to my dashboard this weekend, and am looking for tips. The leather has been skived to thin it, and I have the recommended contact adhesive to fix it with. But I can't see how to get it around the elbows in the dash panel where the centre section drops down for the clock without getting a crease in it - it doesn't stretch like vinyl!
Any clever tips? Do other cars have a crease here? Does heat help (I doubt it), or wetting the leather?
All suggestions gratefully received!
Roger
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Old 10-04-2014, 09:50 AM
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Well.... first I would cover the dash with that thin , high density white foam which will give the dash that soft factory look. With a little give under the leather it makes the stretching easier...
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Old 10-04-2014, 10:44 AM
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Roger, Dashes are always tricky due to the multiple directions you have to pull the leather. Having done a number of them I can offer what has worked for me. It is best to use hides in the 1.5 oz. category. Give yourself enough skin in excess to what is required to cover the dash for means of pulling the leather. Any excess can be trimmed off during the process. Do not try to do the whole dash in one shot. It works best if areas are allowed to set up before going onto the next area. Apply contact cement to the backside of the entire skin and allow to dry. Start with an area in the center of the dash and put the contact cement on that area only and let dry. This will allow you to position the dash on the overall hide. After this sets up, work your way outward from the center to the ends by putting the contact center on the aluminum you wish to work with. The backside of the hide should still be tacky but is not just apply a very light coat of cement to soften is and let dry. Do the flat surfaces only and not the edges of the dash, glove box, etc. Leather is skin so you are going to want to stretch is some to give a smooth flat surface. Get all the flat surface or face of the dash done and let dry. You will want to start with the bottom edges of the dash that have the most curvature and stretch the skin while using something like an old ink roller to get a smooth clean surface free of any wrinkles. Move on to the long straight edges. After this sets you can then trim off the excess, glue the back of the dash, and fold over the skin. You can trim and fold over the top of the dash in the same manner. Cut the opennings in the glove box and steering column allowing you enough material to work with but not too much that will prevent you from stretching the skin and tearing it. The glove box opening is usually the hardest area because of multiple tight curves. This takes a lot of massaging to avoid any wrinkles. Use a heat gun if needed to soften leather in a spot. Do not over heat. Warm days is better to do all of this than cold. After everything is dry, cut the openings for the gauges and switches. Hope this will help you some. AJ
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Old 10-04-2014, 08:45 PM
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Do the holes for instruments have reasonable clearance? I think you'll want to pie cut them.
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Old 10-04-2014, 09:19 PM
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I don't think originals had any padding behind the leather. The gauges weren't pie-wedged but the steering shaft hole, the clock and the glovebox were. Also the edges where tight radiuses were formed and glued into place were pie-wedged. The rest of the leather around the dash was cut every few inches as needed on the backside where it was glued into place.
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Old 10-05-2014, 01:31 AM
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Yes, that's pretty much my plan. No padding, and I plan to pie-wedge the gauges just to help retain the leather. All holes have been checked for clearance with the relevant gauge (using scrap leather around the hole) and the relevant switch (not pie-cut). I think it's just the dash bottom compound curvature that is the problem area, and some on the ACOC have suggested steam whilst glueing it down. I have spare scraps so will practice a couple of techniques first.
A thought - was there any kind of trim strip on the bare edge of the bottom of the dash? My Austin Healey's ali dash had a strip of furflex pushed over the trimmed edge.
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Old 10-05-2014, 06:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rsk289 View Post
A thought - was there any kind of trim strip on the bare edge of the bottom of the dash? My Austin Healey's ali dash had a strip of furflex pushed over the trimmed edge.
No sir.
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Old 10-14-2014, 05:01 AM
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Hey! Do you know why Mercedes Benz cars have this scent that when you sit inside, you know you're inside a Mercedes? I just love the scent!
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Old 10-14-2014, 04:31 PM
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Default 289 Dash

The 289 dash should have no padding under the leather. The glove box door should have a very slight amount. I don't know about 427's.
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Old 03-31-2019, 05:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rsk289 View Post
....I have the recommended contact adhesive to fix it with.....
Roger - old thread, I know, but I'm almost ready to leather my dash panel now and I subscribed to this thread (5 years ago?) knowing I would need the advice and tips eventually.

Which is the recommended contact adhesive you referred to?

Cheers,
Glen
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Old 04-01-2019, 05:25 AM
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Roger - old thread, I know, but I'm almost ready to leather my dash panel now and I subscribed to this thread (5 years ago?) knowing I would need the advice and tips eventually.

Which is the recommended contact adhesive you referred to?

Cheers,
Glen
Hello Glen,

This is what I used as a general adhesive:

https://www.woolies-trim.co.uk/product/1332/adhesive

Woolies won't ship outside the UK, but there will be plenty of similar products locally to you.

Good luck around the glovebox ends! Get your finger muscles in training!
Roger
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Old 04-01-2019, 05:53 AM
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Thumbs up leather work

Blue sky ... that was excellent ...

QUOTE=blue sky;1321105]Roger, Dashes are always tricky due to the multiple directions you have to pull the leather. Having done a number of them I can offer what has worked for me. It is best to use hides in the 1.5 oz. category. Give yourself enough skin in excess to what is required to cover the dash for means of pulling the leather. Any excess can be trimmed off during the process. Do not try to do the whole dash in one shot. It works best if areas are allowed to set up before going onto the next area. Apply contact cement to the backside of the entire skin and allow to dry. Start with an area in the center of the dash and put the contact cement on that area only and let dry. This will allow you to position the dash on the overall hide. After this sets up, work your way outward from the center to the ends by putting the contact center on the aluminum you wish to work with. The backside of the hide should still be tacky but is not just apply a very light coat of cement to soften is and let dry. Do the flat surfaces only and not the edges of the dash, glove box, etc. Leather is skin so you are going to want to stretch is some to give a smooth flat surface. Get all the flat surface or face of the dash done and let dry. You will want to start with the bottom edges of the dash that have the most curvature and stretch the skin while using something like an old ink roller to get a smooth clean surface free of any wrinkles. Move on to the long straight edges. After this sets you can then trim off the excess, glue the back of the dash, and fold over the skin. You can trim and fold over the top of the dash in the same manner. Cut the opennings in the glove box and steering column allowing you enough material to work with but not too much that will prevent you from stretching the skin and tearing it. The glove box opening is usually the hardest area because of multiple tight curves. This takes a lot of massaging to avoid any wrinkles. Use a heat gun if needed to soften leather in a spot. Do not over heat. Warm days is better to do all of this than cold. After everything is dry, cut the openings for the gauges and switches. Hope this will help you some. AJ[/quote]
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