Sunday, September 7, 2014

Top Countdown Indicators Install

I was having some issues trying to determine the best way for me to install the top Count Down Indicators. This is another one of those items that everyone seems to do differently. I thought about cutting out the bottom of the channel on the dash that they sit in and finding a way of securing them in through the bottom of the dash. I was not really sure how to go about mounting them as they seem pretty delicate. I figured perhaps what I would do instead is to drill 4 holes into the side of the channel for the wires to thread through because on my last test fitting of the dash I was not 100 percent sure that the bottom of the Count Down Indicators channel was making the dash rest too high at that side, figured there might be some more dash plastic cutting in order, either that or to trim off the bottom of the channel. So in any event threading the wires in through the side wall of the channel seemed to make the best sense for now.

Next was the problem of how best to secure them in. I thought about using a long thin bolt in through the sides of the channel into a few holes that I could drill in the sides of the Count Down Indicators plastic away from the electronics, that was one thought. Someone on Face Book suggested the idea of using Velcro to strap the indicators in place, I liked that idea, but this would have worked if I had cut out the bottom of the channel. So I figured that perhaps I could secure the indicators in by making some kind of cover for them that I could glass into place and would give them a more moulded to the dash look. I had originally cut out a piece of Aluminum and bent it into the "Step" shape of the Count Down Indicators. This I was going to fit over top of the indicators and cut out holes for the light covers. But as it turns out the choice of Aluminum I used was little too thick and It was a little too long on once of the middle steps. So I decided to go with a thin card stock instead. It was either that or pick up some thinner stock Aluminum and try again. But I figure that if I was just going to glass over my cover plate anyways then something to just keep the fibre glass resin away from the Count Down Indicators but yet give support enough to keep the indicators in place is all I really need. It would mean a bit of a small messy job mixing up small batches of resin and using a small brush to do the job though.

After I test fit my card stock cover plate to make sure it was going to fit good I cut out the holes for the indicator light faces. I used some tape to hold the card stock cover plate to the Count Down Indicators during the glassing in place process. I thought I might need to put a weight on top of them to hold them down but just friction alone seemed to do the job. So I threaded the wires for the Indicators back in through the holes I had drilled into the side of the channel and sunk the Count Down Indicators into the channel making them ready to be carefully glassed into place.

Once I had glassed them in place I could now begin to file and sand the fibre glass resin down to match the shape more. The tricky part was trying not to get any resin of the light cover faces which I ended up doing a little anyways. That I can Dremel off with some very fine bits anyways but it will be a bit of a pain in the back side for sure as I'll have to try not to Dremel into the plastic light covers. I did end up accidentally removing a little bit of the letter "P" on the "POWER" indicator, something I will need to fix. Probably with those rub down letters you can get.

Once the resin had been sanded down enough I was able to mask off the light cover faces and then prime the whole area with sandable primer. This way I can sand and file some more and get a better idea of where I am sitting with what needs to be done more in the area of sanding and filling. It's not completely done gets but it's getting closer and closer. I still need to do some more sanding and filing in some areas but both the Voice Box Bezel and top Count Down Indicators are starting to look good. I like the way they are starting to look more moulded to the dash rather that just "Stuck On." 

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