XK 129 DHC - Centre armrest

I am installing the new interior and have a new leather covering for the centre armrest between the seats. The frame that the leather mounts on is in a rather deplorable state as you can see from the photos. I have been told that it is constructed out of ‘bitumised’ card but cannot find any supplier of the material or anything like it.
I am considering using thin aluminium sheet which will be easy to mould and bend but would rather use something more original. Does anyone have any idea of a suitable material?
Thanks in anticipation.

Following- same question

Hi David:

I got my interior from BAS, at the time they had a franchised outlet in Vancouver, B.C. although I understand they have since moved to California. The base for the armrest was, as you were advised, a sort of “bitumised” card therefore is presumably available somewhere. As I replaced my interior piecemeal over some time BAS were not averse to selling me sections separately. Might be worth contacting them to see if they would sell you a base. Of course, as the franchise owner kept lamenting when I would order sections individually: “Too bad you can’t order the whole kit, it would be cheaper”,
i.e. it might be more expensive than if you could locate a supplier of the proper stuff and fabricate your own. Good to learn things are progressing!


I remembered measuring mine for somebody on this forum.
XK120 arm rest 1
XK120 arm rest 2

Google turned up a lot for bituminized paper, we call it tar paper here.
You could try your hand at making tar cardboard by laying down alternating layers of tar paper and bitumen (hot tar) and rolling it with a paint roller.

Interestingly, the long fold seams are sewn. The cut edges are also hemmed. Just the reinforced corners are riveted.

Rob Reilly, you are a wizard, thanks!
What you call tar paper I have just realised we would call old fashioned roofing felt, that’s either a cloth or a card impregnated with bitumen, and I know where there is an assortment of old offcuts. I could use it to bolster up the original former as bitumen bonds very easily with heat, in fact a hot steam iron works well as I used it to straighten and flatten the bituminised card below the hood window on the back parcel shelf before I re-covered it.
Once again thanks for your knowledge.
Regards, David