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custom center consule

 
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Old 04-25-2008, 10:49 PM
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custom center consule

i have been thinking about making a custom center consule out of fiberglass. i don't care for the 93 or 96 and would love the fact that its custom. i have never worked with fiberglass before so i need some pointers before starting. i thought about making a mold from the old consule but am worried about breaking it and the new one not fitting right. my next thought was making a frame and wrapping it in the cloth. then put 2 layers of fiberglass, then take out the frame and fibberglass on the inside. bigger pita but would i be able to get the frame out with out breaking the mold?

i know i might be in over my head here, but it will be worth it. and don't worry i plan on working with fiberglass before i attempt this. if anyone has any insights, ideas, designs, thoughts, w/e let me know.
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Old 05-08-2008, 11:36 PM
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update

made the first layer of the mold today. i'm going to either figure out a way to take the shape of the mold or use the mold (don't want to do). i'll probably take pictures tomorrow and make the spot around the ebrake.
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Old 05-09-2008, 12:18 AM
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i cant say im not curious
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Old 05-28-2008, 11:20 PM
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got any pics yet?
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Old 05-29-2008, 12:05 AM
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Make sure to include a cup holder I've worked with fiberglass repairing body kits and stuff. A dremel will be your best friend.
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Old 06-09-2008, 11:12 AM
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Fiberglass is a blast to work with! It can be tedious, cuz a lot of fun because of all the crazy things u can come up with. I may be a little late with this but i can give some insight cuz ive done quite a bit of work doing custom stereo installs.

What you'll need
  • Table saw
  • Chop saw
  • jig saw
  • drill/bits
  • router/roundover bits
  • cardboard
  • clothes hanger
  • fiberglass resin
  • fiberglass matting/cloth
  • screws
  • dowl rods
  • stretchy fabric
  • staple gun
  • 1-3/3-5 sec super glue and activator
  • disposable paintbrushes

Usually you will want to make the framework for your center console out of wood. The main tools ull need are a table saw, chop saw, jig saw, and a router with a roundover bit(s). The table saw can be used to rip down big sheets of wood, chop saw for cutting parts to exact length, the jig saw to get crazy with tight diameter circles, and the router to clean your edges. It also helps to have a drill with an assortment of bits and dowl rods to build your framework(usually for making sub enclosures to support the ring the sub mounts to whenever you wrap the rest of the frame.

when making your frame work youll want to to fit the floor of the vehicle as best as you possibly can. there are several ways of doing this. what i find works well is using a combination of ways. i like to use a coat hanger and bend it to fit the area i am working with, and then transfer it to a piece of cardboard and make a template. once you have a cardboard template, you can transfer it to the wood and begin cutting.

keep in mind too, since you will be wrapping this in fabric, you do not have to make it out of solid wood. you just want to make a wooden skeleton, but you want it to be strong enough that you can pull fabric over it tightly.

it is also important to use a router with a roundover bit to round the edges of your corners so that whenever you do wrap it in fabric, it will look very smooth and clean. there are different sizes of roundover bits you can use to make your transitions more or less aggressive, and by aggressive i just mean sharper. the smaller diamater bit, the sharper your edges will look.

once youve got the skeleton cleaned up and assembled, its time to wrap! ur gonna need a stretchy type of fabric, instant super glue, super glue activator, a staple gun, fiberglass resin, fiberglass matting/or cloth.

the best way to go about wrapping it is to try to tuck everything down towards the bottom to the underside of the console/sub box/kick panel/whatev. from there u can staple the fabric underneath the bottom. i would not use staples in any other spot other than the bottom side that you cannot see because u will have to cover them with filler otherwise. this is why u need some 1-5 sec superglue and activator. you can get this at any hobby shop and it works great. just work your way around the piece a little bit at a time, pulling the fabric tight and tacking it in place with the super glue and activator. for those that dont know, the activator speeds up the cure time to almost instantaneous curing.

once you have the full structure covered, it is time to start covering it with resin. i suggest when ur at walmart getting fabric that you should get a bunch of the cheap disposable paintbrushes. you can brush on 1-3 coats on the the fabric alone until it starts to solidify, but make sure u let each individual coat cure. once it starts to get a little solid, you can add fiberglass matting or cloth to the mix. i prefer the cloth because its not as itchy when u sand AND its not as messy. i would just lay a coat of resin on the structure, then just lay strips of cloth onto the wet resin, then cover the cloth strips with another coat of resin. this will quickly add strength to the piece. it doesnt hurt to sand down between coats either, it will reduce the amount of body work you have to do later.

after you have the structure to its proper integrity you can go a few ways with it. you can sand it smooth and apply body filler to give it a slick finish, or add texture to it to give it a "factory" appearance. what ive found to work great is the spray in bedliner stuff by DupliColor that you can buy at autozone. it works great to add texture.

i think i covered that pretty well. any more questions or comments just hit me up.....not a bad post for a noob!
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Old 06-22-2008, 09:15 PM
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nice write up man, pix would help too.
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Old 06-22-2008, 09:34 PM
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well written indeed :becky:
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Old 07-12-2008, 01:10 PM
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I was just winging it from when i made a console for my Dakota. I was a retard and didnt take pics or document it. I actually learned how to do it while working at a gas station reading a "Mini Truck" magazine. I stumbled across an article called, "Glassin' for Dummies." I gave it a shot and had some successful results, i plan to do a custom eclosure in the trunk of the Lude eventually. When i do, i will DEFINTELY document and follow up with pics. I hope this write up has helped anyone curious with doing fiberglass!
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Old 07-12-2008, 09:20 PM
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very nice read thank you
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