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#1063923 - 10/29/19 12:40 AM Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover?  
Joined: May 2019
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T5montecarlo Offline
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T5montecarlo  Offline
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Lederach, PA
The dash cover for my 1987 should arrive on Wednesday. I know it comes with instructions, but wonder if those who have installed one can give me any lessons learned/tips before I begin.

Marc

#1063971 - 11/01/19 06:55 PM Re: Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover? [Re: T5montecarlo]  
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T5montecarlo Offline
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T5montecarlo  Offline
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Lederach, PA
Apart from upflying, has nobody installed a dash cover?

#1063977 - 11/02/19 02:04 PM Re: Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover? [Re: T5montecarlo]  
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84ss355*4spd Offline
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84ss355*4spd  Offline
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Edmonton,AB,Canada
I havent but i would like to hear about this as well and some pics of one installed


84ss current restoration
86 ss gone
85 ss new
85 z28 tpi
[Linked Image][Linked Image][Linked Image]
#1064056 - 11/06/19 03:50 PM Re: Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover? [Re: T5montecarlo]  
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upflying Offline
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upflying  Offline
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Reno, NV
Mine was installed 15 yrs ago under the brand name Dash Cap. As I mentioned in another thread, I would install a cap only after removing the entire dash. The fit on my cap isn't perfect and it is noticeable if you look close..especially around the glove box and radio openings.
I suspect my old cap was vacuum formed over an existing dash and that makes a clean fit tricky. Maybe dash cap technology has improved over 15 yrs. I am still waiting for the aftermarket to produce a repop dash.


86 MCSS Notchback coupe, LS3, 4L65E, QP 9", Eaton Truetrac, 4 wheel disc, column shift, Dakota Digital, silver with maroon bench interior

#1064058 - 11/06/19 05:58 PM Re: Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover? [Re: T5montecarlo]  
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T5montecarlo Offline
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T5montecarlo  Offline
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Lederach, PA
The one I have is made by DashTop.

Robert, do you remember what you used to hold the cap in place while the adhesive cured?

#1064075 - 11/08/19 01:13 AM Re: Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover? [Re: T5montecarlo]  
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T5montecarlo Offline
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T5montecarlo  Offline
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Lederach, PA
I have begun removing the dash. I followed the advice in this thread:
http://www.montecarloss.com/community/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=917281

I have all the bolts removed and am now at the point of removing the harness from the rear of the dash. The top of the dash was stuck to the foam tape, so it took a bit of tugging to release it.

Is the deteriorated foam tape necessary? or should I leave it alone?

#1064079 - 11/08/19 02:23 PM Re: Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover? [Re: T5montecarlo]  
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upflying Offline
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upflying  Offline
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That deteriorated crumbly foam tape was probably used by GM to keep the dash from squeaking. Not needed now.
I recall using some books on the top of the cap to hold it down while the adhesive cured. The front and vertical surfaces of he cap was simple hand pressure until I thought the adhesive grabbed. PITA..probably why the fit on mine sucks.


86 MCSS Notchback coupe, LS3, 4L65E, QP 9", Eaton Truetrac, 4 wheel disc, column shift, Dakota Digital, silver with maroon bench interior

#1064089 - 11/10/19 01:47 AM Re: Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover? [Re: T5montecarlo]  
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T5montecarlo Offline
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T5montecarlo  Offline
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Lederach, PA
I took the dash out, last evening. I now know there were at least 2 reasons the cover wouldn't fit with the dash installed:
  • The crumbling foam tape prevented the cover from going on far enough.
  • The edge of dash, where it met the windshield, had curled.

Now that I have the dash out, the cover fits quite well, except around the radio/HVAC area. The cover fits over the top edge and the left/right edge, but won't fit over the bottom edge. The cover seems to be larger than the dash. I can force it on, but it will spring right back and I doubt the RTV adhesive will prevent the cover from springing back.

Since the dash is in a 1987, there is a bezel that fits over the edges in question. The bezel is also a very tight fit over just the cover. I could do some trimming of the cover where the bezel covers the area trimmed, but wonder if it is advised.

Has anyone else experienced this issue with a dash cover, where it doesn't fit well around the radio/HVAC area?

#1064097 - 11/10/19 02:33 PM Re: Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover? [Re: T5montecarlo]  
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upflying Offline
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upflying  Offline
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I had the same problem with the bezel, the dash cap adds thickness to the bezel mounting area. I added a couple of hidden screws under the bezel to keep the bezel and cap in place around the HVAC and radio opening.

Last edited by upflying; 11/10/19 02:35 PM.

86 MCSS Notchback coupe, LS3, 4L65E, QP 9", Eaton Truetrac, 4 wheel disc, column shift, Dakota Digital, silver with maroon bench interior

#1064099 - 11/10/19 04:34 PM Re: Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover? [Re: T5montecarlo]  
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T5montecarlo Offline
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T5montecarlo  Offline
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Lederach, PA
I was considering between 4 and 8 rivets, but screws sound like an easier solution; thanks for backing up my thoughts.

Marc

#1064455 - 12/15/19 03:10 AM Re: Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover? [Re: T5montecarlo]  
Joined: May 2019
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T5montecarlo Offline
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T5montecarlo  Offline
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Lederach, PA
I finished my dash cover project. The cover did not fit as well as I had hoped. The fit over the top was perfect. The fit around the dash plaque was perfect. The fit on each end was poor and the fit around the HVAC/radio area was poor. Where the emergency brake lever is, the cover didn't quite sit deep enough in the pocket for the lever, making it difficult to reinstall the lever.

On either end, the cover would not fit over the dash. I could push it on part way, with difficulty, and it would spring back. I removed parts of the dash in order to make the cover fit on either end.

I tried trimming away parts of the dash around the HVAC/radio area, but the cover would still spring back. I was able to make the cover fit around the HVAC/radio area with the help of my heat gun. While the dash was on a table, supported by wood stacks, laying on its back, I applied heat to the upper left corner. After the plastic in the corner became soft, I quickly placed the HVAC radio bezel over the cover and laid my body on top of it. I repeated this process on the other 3 corners and the bezel would finally fit over the dash cover while utilizing the original screw holes without any stress on the bezel.

I trimmed the ends of the defrost duct area since it would be visible with the cover installed, and it looked bad. Now with the cover installed, there are no parts of the dash visible when looking into the ducts.

After deciding the cover wasn't going to fit any better than I had made it fit, it was time to glue it on. I didn't feel the included silicone was going to be sufficient, so I used a new caulking gun-sized tube of GE clear silicone. I did not just apply the silicone to the perimeter, I applied it everywhere, and then smeared it around with a gloved hand. Then I put the cover on, and used many zip ties and clamps to hold the cover in place while the silicone cured; the cover is not a snug fit so it needed to be pressed firmly into place with the zip ties and clamps (I really needed clamps). I waited 48 hours before removing the zip ties and clamps.

I taped up the edges of the cover fearing that any oozing silicone would make permanent glossy marks in the cover. The fear was for nothing. There were some glossy finger prints that were easily removed with VMP Naptha.

Since the cover covers the holes, in the defrost ducts, used to attach the top of the dash to the car, I drilled small holes from back side of the dash so the installation would not look like the dash had a cover.

Since I had troubles removing the stock speakers, I added proper-colored pigtails so the speakers could be installed on the table and easily connected while putting the dash back into the car.

Then, I put the dash back into the car, reversing the procedure I wrote in this thread:
http://www.montecarloss.com/communi...in=111005&Number=1064452#Post1064452

I broke some harness clips during removal. I found one clip in the harness that wasn't being used, so I cut it out and zip tied it to the harness. To replace the other broken clips, I cut down some split loom conduit clamps that used the same type of clip.

When I got to the steps to install the gauge cluster housing, it would not fit. I had to use a small drum sander on my Dremel to clean up the corners of the cavity where the cluster housing mounts in order for the housing to fit. The Dremel work is not visible with the cluster housing installed.

I can close the glove box, with force; I still need to trim the glove box door to fit the narrower opening in the dash. If the door is not colored throughout, I will likely have to paint it since the edges will be black.

The finished product looks fantastic. Please see the included pictures.

Marc

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#1064457 - 12/15/19 05:54 AM Re: Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover? [Re: T5montecarlo]  
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MattsMonte Offline
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Johnston, Iowa
nicely done!


[Linked Image]

1988 MCSS T-Tops. Frame off restoration, 330HP 350 crate engine, 700R4 transmission.
#1064470 - 12/15/19 09:50 PM Re: Lessons Learned/Tips on Installing Dash Cover? [Re: T5montecarlo]  
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upflying Offline
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upflying  Offline
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Reno, NV
Nice, I nominate this thread for a sticky.


86 MCSS Notchback coupe, LS3, 4L65E, QP 9", Eaton Truetrac, 4 wheel disc, column shift, Dakota Digital, silver with maroon bench interior


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