Another Dash Recovering Thread!

Hi Guys, I’m going to be recovering my dash panels myself, and have found the various threads to be very helpful as I prepare for this task. So here’s my question. I’ve removed the old vinyl from the dash top. I attach a picture and you can see that I have three major issues as follows: a) sections of missing foam. b) The original top (shiny) surface came away with the vinyl, leaving a rough, but fairly even, finish to say 90% of the foam. c) the foam has some holes that can be clearly seen in the picture. The foam shows no signs of disintegration, and I would like to restore it. So against this background, has anyone run into this problem. I believe I can fix (a) with new foam. Any recommendations on how to fix (b) and (c) would be most appreciated.

My 62 the foam comes off the metal base. You buy a new dash top with the vacuum bonded vinyl to foam with excess vinyl over the sides, it mounts and glues to the metal base, re-attach your vents and fit.

On early cars, depending on year, the top is a different style-flat or fluffy.

Seems to me that it will be difficult to achieve a proper bonding of a new vinyl to this old foam that would probably continue disintegrating over time.
As @mtnjag is suggesting, better buy a new dash top or, if not, also replace that old foam while putting a new vinyl not to have to redo the job in a few years

Roger, to be clear, you maintain your orig dash base metal piece and remove the vinyl covered foam top portion and replace it with a new vinyl bonded to foam dash top. I may be wrong but I don’t think the foam is meant to be recovered.

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As others have indicated, if you can purchase a new dash top, I think that would give you the best results. I have not done an Etype dash but have made several attempts with the dashs on my 80’s Porsches. The fact of the matter is the existing foam is very old and fragile and it is difficult to do spot repairs. Here is an article about one of my efforts. At the end of all that work, the vinyl telegraphed minor imperfections in the repaired foam substrate.

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I replaced the dash cover on my 69 last year and the cover came with new foam attached. My old cover came off with most of the old foam attached as you can see in this picture in which old cover is adjacent to new one being glued on to metal.

Seems to be the most straightforward approach.
The biggest problem I had was reattaching the hoses to the vents. In fact, I gave up and inserted section of hose that was meant for vacuum cleaner attachments inside the original hoses. Not pretty but it is effective.

The final assembly looks like this. Probably didn’t need to do the center vents but I got carried away.

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Not a E-Type expert, and all depends on authenticity, cost and labour, but have done this many years ago on my 1974 Fiat 124 Coupe with very good results.
I’ve built up the large pieces that were missing with some hard foam and then covered the whole dash with polyester/fiberglass.
Sanded as much as I could and fixed all imperfections with bondo to a very smooth finish.
Got some very thin foam, good quality vinyl, did some sewing and glued it in the dash.
Had the car for another 15 years until I’ve sold it and the dash was still as good as new.



Thanks to all who responded. Given that I’m an old retired guy with nothing but time (what’s left at least after the honeydew tasks) I’m going to attempt the fiberglass/filler/glue/clamps route. If the end result shows any bumps or wrinkles, I’ll go with the usual suspects product. I realize that the risk here is deteriorating foam, so I’m knowingly rolling the dice! Thanks again!

Make sure you make a thick-ish coat of fiberglass as not to crumble or break if someone puts pressure on it.

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If you are going to cover it with vinyl, you have to use a good UV resistant vinyl or it will shrink or bubble with the sun shining through the windshield.

This is the one video I saw that showed a pretty good way to do it.

Interestingly I also used vaccum cleaner pipe.

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Thanks for additional help guys. The guy in the video is a real pro and makes it all look sooo easy! I will attempt to emulate!

Don’t personally like the spray idea much… too shiny, looks like cheap plastic.
Also don’t know how well it will last in time.
The E-type dash is flat and dead easy to recover. And I would use real leather.