[Saloon-lovers] Forming Carpet Around Compound curves?

Does anyone have any experience/hints on how to form carpet around
compound curves such as the transmission tunnel? Some internet
sources say use a heat gun but don’t elaborate. Should heat be
applied and the carpet first formed as best as possible, then once
formed, use contact cement to do the final gluing? Does one apply
the heat to the backside of the carpet? Are there any forming
tools that would ease the job? Would a steamer be a better heat
source than a heat gun?

Help!!!

Tom–
1960 Mk 2, 1968 Rover 2000TC, 2001 XJ8, Los Angeles, CA
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In reply to a message from 302Rover sent Sun 22 Feb 2009:

carpet does not like curves, same is true for the headliner fabric.
You use heat to apply the self-sticking sound deadener material,
but not carpet.

The way the transmission tunnel carpet was glued in my S type was
that they cut the carpet at the point where it would ‘bubble’,
trimmed the excess, then joined the two pieces. My carpeting is
original.

If you look at a drawing of certain carpet sections in a place like
BAS Ltd., you will see that if you flatten the piece of
transmission tunnel carpet, it has angular or pyramidal sections of
material cut away, so that when it is laid over a rounded form,
such as the transmission tunnel, these angularities join together
to conform to the shape. That’s why there are upholstery ‘patterns’.

Same principle as dress patterns that women use to sew dresses?

Zurdo–
The original message included these comments:

Does anyone have any experience/hints on how to form carpet around
compound curves such as the transmission tunnel? Some internet
sources say use a heat gun but don’t elaborate. Should heat be
applied and the carpet first formed as best as possible, then once
formed, use contact cement to do the final gluing? Does one apply
the heat to the backside of the carpet? Are there any forming
tools that would ease the job? Would a steamer be a better heat
source than a heat gun?
Tom


1965 3.8 ‘S’ 1984 XJ-6
Florida, United States
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In reply to a message from 302Rover sent Sun 22 Feb 2009:

Tom -

You are heading into specialist territory. I would HIGHLY
recommend that you take your car & carpet to a trim shop in
your area (there are thousands in LA!) and have a proper
carpet fitter do the work. In some cases your carpet will
need to be cut and sewn - good fitters make all the
difference in the world. Definitely worth the hundred bucks
or so to have it done by a pro.

Alan–
'52 A90 '53 BN1 '59 Mk IX '64 BJ8
Hong Kong, Hongkong
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In reply to a message from healeynut sent Mon 23 Feb 2009:

Tom,
I second the comments by Alan above.

Trying to custom fit carpets (and headlining materials as
well come to that) IS a specialist area and you can spend as
many dollars in time , wasted materials and frustration as
you would paying someone else to do it.

Find a carpet specialist and get a quote at least.

Good luck with it all.

Pete.–
V6MGB
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In reply to a message from V6MGB sent Tue 24 Feb 2009:

Pete,

actually I finished the job yesterday. I had bought a carpet kit
from someone on ebay and got a good price but some of the edge-
bound pieces were not cut correctly so I had to remove the edge
binding, cut to fit, then take those to a shop to be bound again.

The forming around compound curves question was directed at the two
pieces that cover the transmission tunnel. I used a heat gun on
the backside of the carpet, being very careful not to get the
material too hot. I practiced a bit on some of the scrap left over
from the trimming mentioned above. The heated carpet got quite
pliable so I was able, moving quickly, to form it to fit. Then I
used spray contact adhesive, purchased at an automotive upholstery
supply shop, and was able to move the pre-formed pieces into
place.

The result looks quite pleasing but I may have got lucky. Other
carpet material, depending on the backing, might not respond to
heat as well. I don’t know that for sure but am only guessing.

Another job checked off and about a thousand to go!

Tom–
The original message included these comments:

I second the comments by Alan above.
Trying to custom fit carpets (and headlining materials as
well come to that) IS a specialist area and you can spend as
many dollars in time , wasted materials and frustration as
you would paying someone else to do it.
Find a carpet specialist and get a quote at least.
Good luck with it all.
Pete.


1960 Mk 2, 1968 Rover 2000TC, 2001 XJ8, Los Angeles, CA
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In reply to a message from 302Rover sent Tue 24 Feb 2009:

Tom,
Congratulations on the completion of the job.

I was under the impression you were trying to fit flat
carpet to a compound section and was unaware you were using
a kit.

Cheers , Pete.–
V6MGB
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In reply to a message from V6MGB sent Wed 25 Feb 2009:

Pete,
although I did have a kit, the pieces that fit around the
transmission tunnel were flat and needed to be formed. That was
the problem I had, so I decided to take a chance on ruining the kit
and try heat forming. But had I known it was going to be such a
PITA, I would have looked around for a pre-formed kit and paid
extra. Having said that, I don’t really know if a pre-formed kit
is available or not. Oh well, at least it is done and now I can
move on to the next of the thousand things left to do before the
car is on the road.

Tom–
The original message included these comments:

Congratulations on the completion of the job.
I was under the impression you were trying to fit flat
carpet to a compound section and was unaware you were using
a kit.
Cheers , Pete.


1960 Mk 2, 1968 Rover 2000TC, 2001 XJ8, Los Angeles, CA
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