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  • Dashboard veneer question

    I've done a fair amount of woodworking, but nothing with veneers, so i have a fairly newbie question about it, for those who have put a fresh veneer on their dash: do i need to worry about the dash warping if i only veneer the front side?

    More info: I'm planning to fix and re-veneer my original dash (so, it's well seasoned), i'm using plain walnut (no paper backing), standard 1-part veneer glue and weights (no vacuum bag). Maybe trying to bookmatch like on some of the 250s if i'm feeling confident. I've done a bunch of reading on veneering in general, any dashboard-specific tips appreciated.
    Bill Connell
    1969 TR6 CC28790
    TR6 project log
    St. Paul MN

  • #2
    The stock dashboards are not solid and are more like plywood with different layers going in different directions, You should only have to lay down a new veneer on the front.
    I've never done it, but there are many here who have and can offer suggestions. Getting the old coating and veneer off can be a bit tricky.
    Please take and post pictures of you progress.
    CF1634U+O Pimento/Chestnut
    2nd owner, since 1975
    Now in Fair Oaks, CA

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    • #3
      Bill, From your comments, I am assuming you are familiar with veneering, so I'll relate what I did.
      I ran the original IP ( as my son would refer to it) through my planer, taking as light a cut as I could on each pass, maybe 1/128".
      I book matched cherry veneer with the seam over the center of the IP since I could not find veneer in one piece.
      I used a piece of 3/4 blue foam board over the veneer, and a plank over that for even pressure. I used Titebond II on the advice
      of the woodworker's supply store where I bought the veneer. I cut out the holes for the instruments using a new blade in a utility knife, being very careful
      to cut across the grain to avoid splitting. I only removed the veneer to a rough opening, and used the finest grit I had on a small sanding
      drum in a drill press. I actually made a wood pilot for the end of the sanding drum that was smaller than the drum by the amount of lip on the gauge mounting (small gauges).
      Considerable care here will be rewarded by not having to do it over! I finished with a spray satin poly to get a smooth finish.
      Since it was an oil base poly, the cherry darkened slightly, but that is what I wanted in order to bring out the grain. I used no stain, only the poly.
      Click image for larger version

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      Dennis

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      • #4
        Bill--

        Though it's pretty standard veneering practice to treat both sides of a panel, the dash is pretty well constrained as installed, so there shouldn't be much issue with warping. I did just one side, and in the year or two before I finally installed the dash, there was no obvious warping, and even if there were, I think it would have installed fine.

        Ed
        For just a little more, you can do it yourself!

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        • #5
          I did just the front of mine 20+ years ago.

          Don't recall how I stripped off the old veneer or what sort of cement I used but now 20+ years later it still looks pretty good. I noticed this spring that the left corner is lifting just a little bit.

          I do recall that I managed to get a single piece of veneer that was large enough to cover the entire dash in one piece.
          73 TR6
          Libertyville, IL
          My TR6

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          • #6
            Thanks for the quick answers all, that's what i was looking for.

            Dennis, i appreciate the photo & notes on a pilot for the sanding drum.
            Ed, i've read your dashboard page a few times, good to know about the lack of warping. I'm also planning to use Epiphanes, to more of a satin finish.

            I don't relish the idea of 2 weeks or so without a dashboard in the middle of our short summer, but really looking forward to having this done.
            Bill Connell
            1969 TR6 CC28790
            TR6 project log
            St. Paul MN

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