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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This was made for a '83 GTi, and was actually completed months ago.... I just got around to installing it, and uploading the pics. I've finished a few other FG projects and will post them as time allows.
I made one of these about 10 years ago (that held 4 gauges) and remembered a lot of mistakes that I made. There wasn't a lot of info on this kind of stuff back then. This one will only hold 2 gauges, and I wanted the pods mounted as low (stealth) as possible.
This started as an experiment. I wanted to see how "Mother's Natural Shine" would work as a release agent. I had a cracked a-pillar, so I used that as the test subject.
I loaded the part with a thick layer of dressing then laid a couple layers of .75oz CSM. After curing, it came apart, but pulled a lot of the a-pillar's color with it. I won't be doing that again.




Trimmed part next to original part. Those routed flush rings were not used.


Since I had this part, I decided to put it to use. To construct the pods, I went to HD and bought a 2" ABS pipe and coupler, and a 2.5" Styrofoam ball from AC Moore. I then cut the pipe and coupler on the table saw, and used a hacksaw to cut the ball in half. The foam halves were sanded to the size I needed, then covered in spackle and sanded smooth.


CA glued the coupler parts to the sanded pipe parts; the coupler would give me the flush ring that I wanted. I added the foam end cap, then stretched Ponte over everything. The wire ties held the fabric as I worked all of the wrinkles out. I then CA glued the Ponte to the couplers, then trimmed the excess material.


Resined and a couple layers of CSM. Once everything cured, I poured a bit of acetone in each to eat the foam.


Cut out extra material, so the pod sat tighter to the a-pillar.


CA glued the pods to the a-pillar.


I didn't get pics of the Ponte stretched over the pods and pillar, but it was done. Couple more layers of CSM, too. I'm adding bodyfiller, to work out the fabric's natural tendency to concave, when stretched.


Milkshaked and sanded.



Test fit. Kitty Hair was packed into a front area that had a gap. I also built up a small ridge of KH along the entire front edge of the pillar. There was a small gap, and I didn't want to see any wiring. Sharp eyes will notice that I had to relocate a mounting hole.


This is what I used to finish the project.


There was a small reveal between the outer gauge bezel and the inside of the coupler (maybe 3/32"); this was intentional. Taped it off and hit it with adhesion promoter then "Mars Red" paint.


In the background of the last pic, you can see the painter tape discs that I covered the red with. Sprayed it down with the bedliner, for the pebble finish.


Using the bedliner black as a base coat, and 2 very light coats of Sem "Midnight Blue" give me an incredibly close color match. The original a-pillar is to the left and p/s is to the right.


Installed.... the gauges are just pushed into the pipe. It's a snug compression fit. The end product is slightly larger than the original part, because it was done as an overlay, but I knew that was going to happen when I started this.


Thanks for looking.
-Todd
 

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FV-QR

to each his or her own - i remember there was a thread a few years back going around as someone was making these up for the mk1 community - dont know whatever happened to it but I am glad to see that you made your own http://****************.com/smile/emthup.gif for DIY!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Re: FV-QR (Chromosexual)

I remember that thread.
From the beginning, I asked how the issue with the glue in and pop in windshield would be addressed. They were making a 1 size fits all.
It went to production, but they never really fit right. He ended up selling them on Ebay, as a "needs trimming" part.
-Todd
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Re: Fiberglass Gauge A-Pillar (mk2fu)

Quote, originally posted by mk2fu »
that turned out alot better then i thought, awesome stuff man! any pictures of the car?

lol, what were you expecting to see?
This is the best one I have from last Summer. She's a 25 footer. Get closer and you'll see dings, rear pan seam rust, etc.. The car isn't driven much and I've been starting projects before another is completely finished. It looks the same from the outside, but the interior has come a long way.


Quote, originally posted by CanadianCabby »
very nice... i like how low the gauges are....

I wanted to go lower and more forward, but was limited by my opening vent windows. The original plan was to make an extension of the dash on the driver side, to keep it more stock looking.
Quote, originally posted by antichristonwheels »
So the new part was just a "layer" on top of the old one? What is the milkshake? Ponte?

Yes, it was just an overlay, as an experiment. If I were to do it again, I would have done what I did years ago and worked off the original plastic.
Milkshake is just body filler cut with FG resin. It makes a brushable body filler that will fill pinholes, scratches, etc.. I used just the cream hardener, (as many do) but will add MEKP to the next batch. Without it, it remains slightly sticky. This was the 1st time I used it and I didn't really need to. I should have used more resin to make it thinner and more self leveling.
"Ponte" is just a brand name for very thin stretchable polyester-like material. I've used fleece also, but it takes a lot more resin to wet out and that's a waste. The strength comes from CSM, FG cloth, Roven, etc., that's been perfectly saturated, not over saturated.
Quote, originally posted by syracusegli »
whats this CSM? what did you use to keep the resin from sticking? i was going to try wax paper

Chopped Strand Mat
I used Mother's Natural Shine with less than spectacular results; did you see that it pulled the color off the original?
I've gotten better luck with tape with car wax, aluminum foil wrapped or spray adhesived down, and plain duct tape. Wax paper would work for flat areas, but if it were large and flat, I wouldn't use FG. I can't see it being too pliable without a ton of wrinkling.
Quote, originally posted by werksberg »
You care to repost this on my composite forum?

If you want to link or cut & paste it, that's fine with me.
-Todd
 

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Re: FV-QR (werksberg)

that looks really good, and i'm normally completely against guages over there.
also i'm going to steal your "bedliner spray for texture" idea so i can finish my custom dash, exactly what i needed, thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Re: FV-QR (greenTI)

SEM also makes a couple texture sprays, but I've never used them. Heard there's somewhat of a learning curve with it.
I tried Plasticote bedliner on a FG sub enclosure and didn't like it at all. The can would spit heavy, should have stuck with what I knew would work..
-Todd
 
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