Pantera Dashboard vinyl issue

I have the common dashboard problem of the vinyl having delaminated from the dash housing. I believe the only way to fix it properly is to remove the dash to re-glue it. Since the vinyl has contracted, is there enough hidden vinyl to allow me to glue the vinyl back in place without problems. I prefer not to stretch the vinyl, only to have it lift up again. What are your suggestions?
Thank you
Original Post
Tom,
Any of us that have cars with leather dashboards (2010 Jag XKR) who live in warm climates have experienced dash "shrinkage" where the leather has dis-attached from the frame and pulled back some. You can glue 'til the cows come home, but it will keep happening unless you anchor with staples under the edges of the dash. The adhesives are asked to do more than they're capable of doing. I just recently had the dash pulled from my Pantera and recovered in leather with explicit instructions to use short staples into the frame to combat this problem. It is the only way with a high temp adhesive to insure that it doesn't keep happening. Good luck.
The later dash is much easier to keep the upholstery on. The early dash has too many concave sections.

You can't really use staples on the fiberglass. They don't hold well.

You need to wrap the leather under the dash a couple of inches. Then there is plenty of material to stretch or shrink. Use a hardening glue under the dash.
Depending on what area is giving problems and it's an early dash, know that Ford/DeTomaso addressed this issue while the Pantera was still in production and released a series of black trim pieces that penetrated the shrinking vinyl with tiny nuts behind the dash to hold the upholstery. It's described in TSB Bulletin 5, Article 31. I have recently seen such a complete NOS kit at a vendor's shop (rare!), or you could probably rig a duplicate at home, if you are handy with tools.
Currently my dash is out and I have attempted to reglue with some success. The problem I ran into is that the concave areas have shrunk a small amount. Just glueing with 3m super trim adhesive didn't hold completely. I may retry to get the bits drawn in tighter. Clamping a formed die in the corners may be needed with a little heat. Playing with the idea of Bondo in plastic to form a die on the stripped dash for something to clamp/press. I only have a couple small problem areas left but longevity is uncertain.

I have a customer that is a Cobbler. I'm pretty sure they use similar methods on shoes. I may have to give him a call.

My material has most definitely shrunk. If I don't stretch it the material wrapped around the edge becomes too short.

Jerry



quote:
Originally posted by Tom Kuester:
I have the common dashboard problem of the vinyl having delaminated from the dash housing. I believe the only way to fix it properly is to remove the dash to re-glue it. Since the vinyl has contracted, is there enough hidden vinyl to allow me to glue the vinyl back in place without problems. I prefer not to stretch the vinyl, only to have it lift up again. What are your suggestions?
Thank you
quote:
Originally posted by Bosswrench:
Depending on what area is giving problems and it's an early dash, know that Ford/DeTomaso addressed this issue while the Pantera was still in production and released a series of black trim pieces that penetrated the shrinking vinyl with tiny nuts behind the dash to hold the upholstery. It's described in TSB Bulletin 5, Article 31. I have recently seen such a complete NOS kit at a vendor's shop (rare!), or you could probably rig a duplicate at home, if you are handy with tools.


Hum? Not an argument on my part, just an observation...my car, 4460, had the early dash and had the as described trim retainer strips already installed.

I always just presumed that it was factory installed, but since I am not the original owner, I have no way of knowing that.



The upholstery is still loose in the concave area above the glove box.

I'm not a "Flex Seal" rep but you might want to consider an "over the top" adhesive like this.

The caution that I would have is that the material is so thin, that any kind of adhesive used is likely to show through in a transparency situation.

Since "you" are trying to correct a cosmetic situation to begin with, the "correction" could be worse then the symptom.



My solution was more drastic. I was never a fan of the early dash configuration so I replaced it and went to the single pod dash which simply put, retains upholstery much better.

The one I am using literally is a fiberglass reproduction of the "European late dash" by Precision Proformance. It is a thick fiberglass version, not the original thin molded plastic '74 US version.

The '74 US version is notorious for cracking because of the thinness of the plastic it is made from. The fiberglass is not known for that.

I am told that after the '74 US model year, the dash panels were fiberglass.



My solution is not a suggestion to anyone but you may be trying to fix an un-resolvable situation.

You do want to fix this the first time that you remove the dash. It is not a simple, Saturday afternoon project. It is a major pain in the butt, among other body parts,to remove and reinstall the dash.
[quote
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________
My solution was more drastic. I was never a fan of the early dash configuration so I went to the '74 dash which simply put, retains upholstery much better.

It literally is a fiberglass reproduction of the "European late dash" by Precision Profomance it is a thick fiberglass version, not the original thin molded plastic '74 US version.[/quote]
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________


What all is involved in replacing an early dash with a reproduction late dash?

Shah
The new dash as I purchased it needed to be covered and the accessories needed to be drilled and cut in.

Other then that, all the mounting brackets were attached and it was a strait forward installation.

The ducting from the heater/ac box needed to be altered and new defroster ducts needed to be attached.

All the additional parts I needed Wilkinson had on hand and the costs were very reasonable.

For me, this was the correct solution and I enjoyed the project and love the results. That's all of my work. No one else was involved.

The change in feeling of the interior is a drastic difference. Gone is the all black Darth Vadar feeling.

The dash itself is very sturdy.

The additional gauges are an electronic fuel pressure gauge and a manifold vacuum gauge. Both very helpful with a Weber carb set up.

The wood is red oak and I just need to be mindful of termites now? Smiler

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The biggest issue is modifying the heater box which is not difficult. There are some other things that make is easer to install like adding plugs to the tack and speedo. I install plugs on everything including the wiper/washer switch and under dash lights. Here are some conversions from AmeriSport supplied parts.

This one went into a 71 early body GT5-S conversion.

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Sorry Tom, I did not read from the beginning. With the age causing the loss of plastisals in the vinyl, even if you can get it stretched and glued back using the strongest laminate adhesive, it will not hold. The new fuzzy backed vinyls will hold much better but again, the glues do not hold well to the original plastic dash core. Leather to fiberglass is almost impossible to un-glue once installed. Sorry for the bad report. Maybe someone has a solution other than what I have tried.
IMHO, replacing an early two-pod dash with a later one-pod dash is a LOT of work. For one, the early heater connections to the late defroster openings are different and in the wrong places, with different sized hoses, as the later dash uses a completely different heater/AC box. As you may know, there's not a lot of extra room under either dash for adaptions, either. The later heater/AC box uses different lever controls- some later cars have a fresh air vent that does not even exist in early cars- so unless you have a late wrecked car laying around that you can cannibalize, the costs and even finding the parts will give you a headache. If you are a perfectionist, the fit of the early console to the late dash will not be pleasing either. This is one case where literally buying a car with the dash you like is better than trying to mix-and-match parts at home. It's been done (a few times), but....
it's a winter project in any event. I'll remove the dash and then determine the best alternative. The vinyl is quite soft and flexible since the car has seen little time in the sun, maybe I can make it stretch and hold it in place, but your comments don't sound encouraging. of course I could just live with it, others do. Thank you
quote:
Originally posted by Kirk Evans:
Real carbon inserts in the dash, door panels and gauge panel shown here.

My 2 cents is do the dash R&R but let a pro redo the upholstery work.

If you find the right person it will come back looking better than new. It's an art.

Besides  you'll probably have plenty to do while it's out.

Last, once done it will make other things look old so be ready . Good luck and please post on progress because I'm facing the same issue.

 

 

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