Plastic repair GURUS since 1981
Padded Dashboard Repair:
Standard Operating Procedure
When restoring older cars, it is often too expensive to replace a cracked dashboard. And, that is assuming a new dash board is available. In cases where new parts are too expensive, too difficult to find, or, impossible to find, you will need to restore what is already there.
This SOP will guide you through the repair process using Polyvance’s Padded Dash Filler. Our Padded Dash Filler is formulated from special polyester resins that increase adhesion to vinyl and other plastic substrates. Flexible resins are used to give the flexibility required to withstand the expansion and contraction brought about by extreme temperatures. It has excellent filling qualities with shaping, sanding and feather edging accomplished with ease. This makes an excellent filler for padded dash repair since the sanding is normally done by hand.
This Datsun 280Z dash has a large split in the vinyl exposing the underlying urethane foam. The vinyl is puckered at each edge which will require a fairly wide repair.
This drawing shows a cross section of the damaged dash with the split vinyl curling up and the cratered out foam underneath.
Clean the surface of the dash with 1000 Super Prep Plastic Cleaner to remove any silicone dressings that may have been applied.
Use a Dremel tool with a drum or rotary sander to sand back the puckered vinyl cover until it is fairly flat. Sand back to expose vinyl that still has a solid connection to the underlying foam.
V out the urethane foam with the sander to expose foam underneath. Bevel the edges of the vinyl as much as possible with the sander.
Use 80 grit sandpaper in a dual-action sander to feather back the repair area.
Use a Polyvance airless plastic welding tool with the FiberFlex welding rod to fill the v-grooved foam completely. The FiberFlex will link into the foam and form a solid, yet flexible, foundation for the filler that will be applied.
Once the FiberFlex cools, sand flush with 80 grit in a DA sander.
If any low spots remain, reapply FiberFlex, let cool, and sand again.
Blow the area dust free with compressed air then apply 1060FP Filler Prep to the area that will be filled.
Mix 2050-9 Padded Dash Filler with cream hardener. Mix completely until the putty turns a uniform color.
Apply the Padded Dash Filler over the repair, several inches on either side of the welded area to bury the edges of the v-grooved area.
Sand the filler with 80 grit sandpaper followed by 180 grit sandpaper. When finished, the filler should still cover the edges fo the vinyl so as to keep them buried under the filler. Sand the entire dashboard with 80 grit sandpaper to remove much of the existing texture.
Apply 1050 Plastic Magic all over to help the primer stick to the dashboard.
Apply a Polyvance waterborne primer to fill the existing texture. Sand overall with 240 and 320 grit sandpaper. Apply spot putty over the repair area if necessary, sand, then reapply primer. Keep sanding and priming until the surface is fairly smooth and the repair area is hidden.
The dash can be retextured with SEM 3985 aerosol texture spray for do-it-yourselfers. Apply three light coats by “splattering” the paint droplets on the surface to simulate texture.
For more control over the texture appearance, use Polyvance’s 3803 or 3804 Flextex VT texture spray with a 2.0 nozzle spray gun. Apply three light coats by splattering the paint droplets on the surface. Keep the gun moving and don’t allow the paint to load up or flow out.