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post #1 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 04:24 PM Thread Starter
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Painting your interior bezels...

This is probably the boldest change you can make to the interior of your car. It can be one of the best mods, or one of the worst...depending on how well you execute it. We were daring enough to try the painting ourselves, but you can remove everything and have a shop color match it for you. The biggest decision was committing to which parts we wanted to paint. We had seen different Mustangs at shows, so we had a pretty good idea of which pieces we wanted to paint. Overall, this had to be one of the scariest mods we did... the thought of taking your stock pieces and painting them. Ugh, what if they don't turn out well. Then you have to buy all new pieces. The pressure was certainly on.

Before....





After...



Before...





After...



**REMOVING THE PIECES FOR PAINT**

Since our car was a daily driver at the time, we wanted to get everything done before we had to drive the car again. Before committing to this mod, we had to be sure we had the time to take all the pieces out, prep them, paint them, allow drying time, and reinstallation time. The car could have been driven with everything removed, but it would mean reconnecting all the switches that we disconnected, as well as the headlight knob. Also be sure the weather is going to work for you. Don't race a storm or cold weather to do this mod, or it could ruin your hard work.

First we removed each of the pieces we wanted to paint.

GAUGE BEZEL

My apologies...when we did the actual mod, I did not take any pictures of the bezel removal. I had to substitute pictures from the installation of when when we did our colored gauge overlay. This is why the parts are already painted in the removal pics.

First thing you need to do is remove the headlight knob... this requires pulling the knob out as far as it will go. Ours is an aftermarket unit, so once it was in its full outward position, it was only a matter of loosening the set screw and the knob would slip right off.





From there, you remove the two screws at the very top of the bezel.





They are torx screws with a t-20 hole.







I put the steering wheel in its lowest position. From there, it is just pulling the clips free on the back side of the bezel. I grasped the lower part of the bezel and gently started the two bottom clips free. Then I could get my fingers between the plexiglass face and bezel. I could also start to get my fingers under the edge of the bezel on the outsides. I moved up from the bottom little by little and gently popped the clips free. Due to the larger surface area of the left hand corner, there was an additional clip on the left side, in the very bottom corner. From there, it was just two more clips a bit further up on each side. The left side one was right next to the head light stalk. You can put your finger in the knob's hole to help with popping it loose. The right hand side clip is directly in line with the left side one.





Then, the panel was free to come out. Now getting it out on the other hand took some maneuvering. The steering column is actually a bit in the way. You have to roll the top down towards the steering column.





Now, you will see two rubber feet clearing the top screws mounting points. You have to make the rear most part of the bezel clear the top edge. Then you can pull the bezel out towards you.











With the part out, I can show you the areas the clips push in. This will make it easier for you to see where you have to apply pressure and where to expect resistance in order to remove the bezel safely.

And where the center clips attach...on either side of the column on the top of the charcoal plastic just below the cluster's plexi...



Here is the back side of the bezel showing the clips that mount in the above slots. Where the bezel sits above the steering column, there is a black rubber piece. This rubber piece has to come off for paint. There are little tabs holding it, as well as the bezel's lower clips. It just stretches and comes off easy.



Back to the dash... here are the holes the clips go into on each corner... As I stated above, the left hand side has a rectangular clip in the corner in addition to the one just next to the headlight stalk. The right hand side just has the one clip in line with the left's upper one.

Left...



Right...



A shot of the back side of the bezel for further clarification on the clips in the corners...

Left side...





Right side...






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post #2 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 04:36 PM Thread Starter
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SHIFTER BEZEL

We decided to remove the whole center section of the dash to paint. The radio/climate control and shifter bezel. In order to do this, we first had to remove the shifter bezel.

You are removing the front portion of the center console/lower section of the dash which encompasses the shifter bezel. You can see the line where it starts right below the 3 buttons (traction control, fog lights, and rear defroster). The first thing you want to do is remove your shift knob. The stock unit is a simple screw off knob. Unscrew it and set it to the side. NOTE: I did not take pictures while we did the disassembly, I had to go back and mock some of them. This is why you will see the bezel painted and the knob still in place on our pictures!



You want to start at the top on each side where the edges overlap onto the center console. I used a screw driver to gently pry the edge up enough to free the inner clips. You have to be gentle to not mar the surfaces. Then you move down about half way. There are tools out there that will work better then a screw driver. They are actually blue plastic pry tools. They are made specifically to help with the removal of plastic parts without marring them. They are available from Summit Racing. Of course I got them after I had to do this... LOL!





Here is what you will see as the bezel's clips start to release the console below....



Once you get the piece like this, you can gently get your fingers under the lip allowing you to pry/pull the piece upwards. You need to lift the top first as there is a plastic tab at the very bottom you must not snap off. PLEASE keep reading before you pull this piece out, so as not to damage the tab.





Here is a shot to the clips you are trying to free. They are pieces of metal that pinch the plastic tab they permanently mount to.





When they are mounted on the tab, they bow out just enough to catch a rectangular slot on the console side.





99% of the time, the clips stay mounted on the tab. Every now and again, one will slip off and you have to look around the inside of the console. Since there is more them one on the shifter bezel, you will be ok if you are missing one, but you might get extra vibrations.

Here is the picture of the tab I mentioned earlier. There is a tab at the bottom end that meets the center console. (You can see our GT coin holder delete in the corner of the pic to orient your view) You want to be careful not to snap it off. You want to pull the top out from the clips and rotate/slip the piece upwards and towards the radio to slip this clip out from under the base of the center console. OK now that I have shown you that, you can remove the piece... LOL!





Once the bezel is free of it's clips, the last step is to disconnect the wiring for the cigarette lighter. Ours was a yellow orange weather pack (connector) with a push tab that would release it. Just push in the tab and gently pull the weather pack from its orange wiring receptacle on the cigarette lighter. Now the bezel can be slipped off the shifter arm and come free of the car.





Out of the car.... now you have to remove the cigarette lighter before you paint. I think there are tabs on the back side that you have to depress to get the lighter to push out through the front of the bezel.




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post #3 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 04:40 PM Thread Starter
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RADIO AND CLIMATE CONTROL BEZEL



With the shifter bezel out of the way, the radio and climate control bezel is accessible for removal. This piece is held in with 4 clips and 2 tabs at the top. Again, we were not planning a write up, so pics are lacking in places. I have not had a reason to remove the bezel again. Maybe if we get the touch screen pioneer we want... lol! You simply grasp the bottom part, below the 3 buttons and give it a gentle tug to get the two bottom clips started loose.



Here, you can see the holes in the dash for the bottom clips of the bezel... You can see the holes the clips go into at the bottom corners on either side of the 3 button recesses.



Then, you work your fingers up under the edge on the sides and work to the top. There are two more clips between the radio and climate controls.



The top has two plastic tabs that hold it under the edge of the dash. Once the bottom and middle clips are released, you have to push the top edge down a bit while you gently pull the bezel towards you. It should release the top tabs. Don't forget you have to disconnect the 3 switches at the bottom of the bezel They have tabs that you push in to release them.



Here are the mounting clips on the piece... one on either side of the buttons at the bottom. Two on either side between the radio and climate control.





The face of the removed piece out of the car...



The last thing we needed to do was to remove the switches. They have tabs on either side. You have to carefully use a small screw driver to help push the tabs through the hole in the bezel. The switches will then push out through the face of the bezel.



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post #4 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 04:56 PM Thread Starter
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SIDE ADJUSTABLE VENTS

Passenger side...



Just open the glove box...



Just look at the top of the glove box and the 7mm vent screws are exposed... remove these screws.







Now pull on the back of the screw's mounting point. This will start the vent coming out of the dash.





There are two tabs on the top side of the vent. You want to gently push down a bit on the top of the vent's face while gently pulling the vent out towards you. The vent will pop loose.





Now you pull a bit more and the top of the tab will finally clear the dash. The just pull the vent out.







DRIVER'S SIDE...



To get the vent out, you have to remove the lower plastic and metal panel below the steering wheel.



Start out by locating the 2 bolts on the underside at the corners. Left side is by the fuse block the right is near the computer port.





Use an 8mm socket and remove the bolts...





Here are the bolts out of the lower dash panel.



You just grasp the panel in the center on the bottom. Ours released at the right hand side first.





A bit of gentle pulling at the top in the center should release the next clip.





The last one was the most difficult... had to wiggle and pull. I was afraid if I just bent it out, I might crack the panel, so it was steady and gentle pulling and wedging fingers under the panel. I pulled some at the top and some at the bottom till it popped loose. You can see the removed panel has three clips across it.





Here is a close up of the clips....



Here is the hole the center clip goes in...



A close up of the left and the right....





The metal panel below must also come out as well. It is held in by two 8mm bolts... you can see them in the above pics by the clip holes.



Once they are out the metal plate will come down.... It's a bit heavier then you would expect!





Now the vent screws are exposed. They are 7mm and come out easy...





Once the screws are out, the removal is the same as the passenger side.





Here are the two vents side by side...



A shot of the tabs on top..




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post #5 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 05:07 PM Thread Starter
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DASH VENT DISASSEMBLY

The actual adjustable vents are impossible to clean well enough to paint. Then getting paint to lay even and have full coverage in the nooks and crannies. Then you have worry about the fin and vents movement rubbing the paint. Honestly there are too many variables to take the risk, so we pulled them out of the vent housing.

This method is to remove the pivoting portion of both the center & side adjustable vents from the housing. I was not able to get the dials out. Its a bit tedious and if you are not careful, you can break the vent, but it made it SO much easier to get the part painted properly. If you think you can't do it, don't chance breaking things, just tape the area off.

You need to look into the vent from the back side. You will see where the vent has a circular clip that clips onto a round pencil sized pin inside the vent housing.



You can carefully pop the clip off the pin by holding the vent from pivoting from side to side and then pushing the clip outward toward the face of the vent. I used a plastic pry tool to push on the piece to avoid doing too much damage.



You will notice the vent will start to move out of the housing. You want to do the same thing to the other side of the vent. As you get it to release, you can actually grasp it and then work it out with your fingers.





From here, you just gently work it the rest of the way out with a combination of pushing on the back side and pulling on the front, going back and forth front each side of the vent to work it out evenly. If you push one side out all the way first, you might cause the vent to bind or break.

SIDE DEFROSTER DASH VENTS





Ok these are nearly impossible to remove whole.... ours had been busted by the previous owner.

This is the left one... it was just sitting all crooked with a crack in it. To top it off, the crack let go when we tried to get it out. I tried to glue it... but.... no.







Right side.... one clip was busted out... and we wondered where the rattles came from in the dash... LOL







The best thing to do is get a new pair from the dealer to paint. You can try to remove yours, but I'm 99% sure they will break. You can see in the picture how serious the clips are on our old ones. Not sure how they could come out whole.



However, luckily these vents are quite cheap... but you will probably have to take a picture in to show the dealer what you are talking about. I kept getting phone quotes for the actual dash vents. You might want to be sure they can get these before you break yours. To help... I believe these were our parts' bags.





Then break out your old ones and pop in the new painted ones.



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post #6 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 05:13 PM Thread Starter
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CENTER DEFROSTER VENT


Now this one was the source of most of our debate. Would it be too much? And how the heck do we get it out? Well we did not do it at first, but came back and did it later. It really was just the perfect finishing piece. I took no pictures of the removal. It was one of those oh dear lord are we gonna break it and then it was out. So I mocked up some pics after the fact...

Really it is a matter of carefully finding a skinny screw driver or the like to slip under the edges and get things started. A rag between the dash and the screw driver would be advised. It will act as a cushion. It would be best to get a set of plastic pry tools from Summit to aid in a damage free removal of your panels.



You slip them in like I show here...





I also used my hands to grasp and pull upwards. It took using multiple pry tools and working the piece with them and my hands to get it out. It was slow and gentle to get the part out. I did not want to try to remove my painted piece as a recreation, as I was sure I would have chipped it.



Here are the tab's holes... they are the small rectangular looking holes along the top edge...

Driver....



Passenger...



Center...





Now to help you tie it together and make sense of it all.... here are the tabs on the actual piece itself...









You can see there are 10 rectangular style clips to fight with. This piece is not going to come out without a fight. 7 across the top edge and 3 across the bottom and center.



"Live with no regrets, treat people the way you want to be treated, work like you don't need the money, love like you've never been hurt, and dance like you do when nobody's watching"...

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post #7 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 05:28 PM Thread Starter
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ARMREST BEZELS



The armrest bezel is the biggest pain to remove. It is a bit awkward and you have to be so careful so as not to break the clip on the rear most end where the piece attaches to the door panel. Since the driver's side has an extra switch to deal with, I will show you it's removal. I did not take pictures during the removal process, so I made sure to take them when we did the billet door handle install. This is why the pieces are already painted.

You start out by pushing the panel down and out at the very top to release the smooth style tab.





A shot of the tab with the bezel out....



Then you want to slip a plastic tool or screw driver in at the back of the panel and pry it upwards till you can get your fingers in.





Once there is enough room to get your fingers in, you will lift gently and pop the clip loose at the back.



These guys break easy and this bezel is not cheap to replace, so be careful. Here is a shot of the clip to help you see what you are working with and where exactly it is located.





Here is a shot of where the clip attaches. You can see the recess in the door panel where the back of the bezel sits. This is what makes it so difficult to get the back side of the piece to lift up and come free of the clip point.



Again, be careful when you attempt to free this clip... the previous owner was not and somehow broke the passenger side clip off... so it is harder than it sounds. The broken clip on the passenger side and a careless tow guy's scratches on the drivers armrest bezel lead to the eventual replacement of the stock bezels.



Once the back is free, you will notice the front rotating backwards. Carefully get your fingers under the front and pull the piece up and out.



Once you get the bezel coming up, you will see where the wiring for the switches attach. The mirror switch in the drivers side bezel has a tab on either side. The wiring weather pack has a clip on each side that slips and over and locks on these two tabs. It makes it a pain to remove without breaking the legs of the clip. The trick I used was to get a screw driver and slip it between the clip leg and switch on one side. Leave it in place holding the clip open enough to slip over the switch's tab on the one side.





Now, use your thumb to open the clip on the other side. Now carefully wiggle the switch free of the clip.



Now with the mirror switch free, you simply remove the screws holding the window and lock switch to the bezel. The whole switch just pulls out. I put the screws back in the bezel to be sure I didn't loose them. On the passenger side, it's the same procedure, but you don't have the mirror switch to deal with. Just unscrew the door lock and window switch from the bezel.





I don't have a picture of this, but the mirror switch will come out of the bezel by depressing tabs on the sides of the switch and pushing the switch out through the top of the bezel.



The bezels out of the car....





Here are the door panels with the bezels out...

Driver's side...



Passenger's side...




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post #8 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 05:40 PM Thread Starter
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DOOR HANDLE BEZELS



I goofed and did not take pics during the disassembly... so I took the pics during our billet door handle install after the parts were painted.

I sat in the car and had to think about this disassembly. It looked simple. I thought ok... "pull the door handle and hold in the open position, and keep it that way while you attempt to remove the bezel. Grasp right below the pull handle. Pull the rear most corner outwards. Then pop the top loose a bit."

Well that was all well and good until I tried to do it for this write up. There is a rubber pad there that won't let your fingers really get in there to grab. You end up grabbing at the very bottom under the handle and then just as you start to get the bezel to move a few mm. the door handle pin digs into your fingers. That sucker was not budging. Not without destroying the paint. So I got to thinking about how I must have removed it. I noticed the arm rest bezels were already out in the pictures. Then I started to remember.

I had the armrest bezels out and I could see down into the door. Just a inch or so below the opening from the removed armrest bezel was the door handle bezel. Its sits just under the door and window switches. Eureka! I PUSHED it out from the backside! I had no pictures because I could not shoot them from inside the door as I worked the piece out. If you look in this picture you can actually see the edge of the backside of the bezel (red) and the door handle mount (black rubber).



So, the best way to remove the bezels is to remove the armrest bezels first. Then reach inside the door panel through the armrest bezel hole. Then you want to pull the door handle to its open position and hold it as you work the bezel out of the the door panel.

To help you do this let me give you a tour of the backside of the bezel itself. This will help you to know what you are wrestling with. Basically these bezels have no actual clips, just plastic tabs molded on the back side of the bezel. The back and top have only small retaining teeth like tabs. I am using the passenger side bezel for this overview.

This is the rear most end of the bezel, where the door handle comes through.



A shot of the top... you will also notice more small teeth like retainers. Front side of the bezel is to the left in the picture. Here you will notice a more aggressive tab on the front of the bezel.



Now here is a shot of the front of the bezel. This gives you a better shot of the tab seen above. You will also notice a second tab on the piece. It is on the bottom side towards the front of the bezel. These larger tabs depress in and lock behind the door panel when the bezel is fully seated.



Here is shot from the bottom... the front of the bezel is on the left side of the picture. You will see the bottom tab clearer now. Again, this tab actually pushes in and hooks behind the door panel...



As I said above, pull the door handle to its open position, as I know it rests extremely close to the bezel.



To keep it from interfering, I would hold it open. I would first try to work the front tab with your hand and push the bezel out of the panel slowly. You might have to work the bottom front one as well. With these free, it should be easy to carefully pull and rotate the other tabs free. Then rotate the bezel to come out around the handle, working the handle open and closed to avoid any interference points.

Here is the drivers door panel with the piece removed so you can see the molded edge the bezel grabs...



Driver's door...



Passenger door...



Bezels out and ready for paint...






"Live with no regrets, treat people the way you want to be treated, work like you don't need the money, love like you've never been hurt, and dance like you do when nobody's watching"...

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Last edited by tinkerbell_too; April 6th, 2011 at 11:54 PM.
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post #9 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 09:43 PM Thread Starter
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GLOVEBOX HANDLE BEZEL

I debated about including this bezel as part of the write up due to incomplete pictures, but maybe you will want to try it anyway. Maybe some part of my pictures will fill in the gaps for you. The glove box latch and bezel are their own unit. You will have to remove the whole latch assembly from the glove box to gain access to the bezel.

So first things first... open your glove box...



You will notice it only opens so far. There are tabs molded on the inner liner that actually catch the edges of the dash and limit the downward travel of the glovebox. In order to remove the latch assembly and bezel from the glovebox door you will have to separate the inner liner from the outer door. The assembly is actually sandwiched between the two. Now there are seven screws that hold the liner to the outer door. You need to lower the glovebox fully to gain access to these screws. To do this, you have to pull in the molded tabs on either side of the glovebox.





Now with the box able to fully lower, you can get a phillips head screw driver in there to remove the screws.



You will see two on the right and left sides just outside of the vertical walls of the inner box.





Then there are 3 more on the inside of the box. One is by itself to the front just to the right of the middle. The last two you will see right next to the inner latch assembly.



These hold the inner liner and half of the latch assembly in place.



Once these seven are out, the inner liner will come out. Here are a few shots of the inner liner out of the car...





Here is a picture of the back side of the inner liner. The screw holes show up really well...



Now turn your attention back to the latch assembly. There is only one screw holding it in place. It's in the right hand upper corner.



Once its out, the assembly and bezel will come out...





Now this is where the pictures and my memory get sketchy. Only thing I can think is that it was too difficult to disassemble and take pics at the same time. But in order to get the bezel free of the latch assembly for paint, I took it apart. If you are good at taping, you might try to tape it up if you are afraid to explode the guts like I did.






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**PREPPING THE PIECES FOR PAINT**

We decided we wanted to paint the interior bezels body color. Some people choose to slick their interior parts when painting them, but we decided to leave the parts with their natural texture. I find that leaving a slightly rough appearance can actually make metallic paints pop even more. It gives the light more areas to deflect and enhances the metallic. I usually only do this when painting textured natural cast aluminum parts or textured interior pieces. Now if we had a non-metallic paint... I would have sanded the parts completely smooth. But its your personal preference.

Now we want to strip any of the old silicone residue from years of using interior shining & protection products. But it's not just getting the part clean, you need to scuff/sand the surface to help form a bond between the plastic and new paint. Sanding can remove some of the contamination, but it is far superior when you use the following method to sand plastic. Whenever I paint plastic, I use this method. I have not had a contamination issue yet. The Mustang is the 3rd car I have painted interior pieces using this method. The trick is to use a WET red scotchbrite pad with liquid dish soap. So, not only are you stripping the part, but giving it a light sanding as well. The scotchbrite is just abrasive enough and flexible enough to retain the part's texture, yet still sand the texture evenly, getting the highs and lows. Once we were satisfied with the scuffing/sanding, we washed the part again with the dish soap until we could slip it in the water without the part repelling the water.

Once we felt confident that we had sanded and washed all of the old contaminates off, we let the parts dry. Once they were dry, we put on rubber gloves to keep our finger oils from contaminating the part. We then took a clean paper towel and soaked it in alcohol and wiped the part. We wiped each part multiple times, each time with a clean piece soaked in alcohol. We repeated this for every part we planned to paint. Again, we left the parts to dry. Then once the parts were dry, with gloves on, we checked the parts to remove any dust or paper towel lint. On this part you can see the paper towel lint...



These pictures are of the parts drying after they are fully prepped for paint. Notice you can see the texture is still apparent.













Once we were satisfied with the cleanliness, it was time to tape off the areas on the parts we did not want painted. The dials on the side and center dash vents for starters. As I stated before, we had removed the movable guts of the vents from their housing. In the pictures I took of the parts once they were in silver paint, you can see where the pieces were taped up. I also taped off the shifter bezel at the natural line that matched the upper radio and climate control bezel. Then I had to tape off the boot itself. Again, this can be seen in the silver paint pics. We attempted to mimic the limited edition factory paint scheme of some armrest bezels. This was not a good decision. We eventually redid the armrest bezels and painted the whole finger hold. It looked so much better. Again this do over was due to damaged paint on one bezel from a tow truck driver and the previous owner breaking one of the mounting clips on the other.



"Live with no regrets, treat people the way you want to be treated, work like you don't need the money, love like you've never been hurt, and dance like you do when nobody's watching"...

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post #11 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 10:19 PM Thread Starter
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**PAINTING THE PIECES**

We do not have an air compressor and we were not using factory paint for this mod. We did this with Duplicolor paint cans we got from the parts store. First and foremost, follow the directions on the spray can of paint. The temperature and humidity precautions are there for a reason. Don't paint when the temperature drops or when the humidity spikes with a rain storm. Even if you are in a garage, the temps and humidity do effect the final finish of the paint. I have experimented with this and have seen the paint cloud up and the final finish has a matte finish or is a hazy white color. And be careful spraying in the direct sun on a really hot day. The surface of the part can get so hot that the paint dries too fast and you get a dry-spray effect or too much texture due to reduced flow time during the drying process. If you are using gun paint or have a spray booth, then it's a different story. You need to give the paint time to flash (tact up) a bit between coats, but if the can says "paint within x amount of time or wait x amount of time before painting", do it. I have seen paint not stick to itself and fisheye, or even crack and split.

Since we were painting plastic, it is usually recommended that you use something like bulldog paint adhesion promoter as a tie coat. It is specifically designed for painting plastics. Well, the past few times I have tried to use it, I have had massive issues getting it to lay right and even. And then the uneven texture of it passes through to the paint, so I opted to skip it. I hoped the thorough sanding and remaining texture of the part would make up for it. I also opted against a primer. You have to sand primer to tie it to the paint that follows... The sanding would take the high spots off our texture. This would make our texture disappear. Also I did not want to build the paint so thick that it looses its textured character.

As stated above, we decided to match the body color on our interior bezels "redfire metallic". I tried a few paint choices, but none of the paints that should have matched it did. The best choice I could find was Duplicolor's Metal Specks. It had the brilliant metallic that matched the body's metallic so well. It is a mildly transparent red, but it has a point where it won't go any darker. You can actually top just about anything and get the same end effect if you layer it enough. I could have slacked and just used the Duplicolor Metal Specks Red paint alone over the charcoal pieces. But I knew the plastic we were covering was so dark that it would deepen the initial coats of red so much that I would have lay additional coats, making the paint so thick it would cause chipping.

To keep the color more brilliant and true, I opted for a tri-stage paint process used when painting candy colors. Topping my transparent color over a lighter base to pop the color. Plus using a lighter base allowed for less layers. That was the only way to come close to matching the body color. On our calipers, I attempted to simply use a light grey primer. The color never popped like it did over the silver. I started with a very light coat of a metallic silver as my base. I kept the silver as thin as possible. Just enough of a dusting to cover the charcoal.

The parts that were tricky were the armrest bezels and the vents. The trick is to paint the deep recesses of the parts first, then move on to the flat top surfaces. We had to get the deep finger recess first on the armrest bezel and then move outward to the surface of the part. The problem you get into if you start on the outside and go in, is the sheer amount of paint and the over-spray on the surface area. You run the risk of running the surface paint or getting a textured dry-spray. You would rather get the dry spray or run in a recess or crevice. Remember, the overly heavy coating becomes very apparent in candy coats by creating color variances. So again, you would rather have the issue be in a crevice then on the face of the piece.



Here is the radio and climate control bezel with its vents masked off... then you see the shift bezel with the boot and the edges masked off.





Here are the vents with the fins and dial masked off.











Here, you can see where we masked the lower part of the armrest finger pull... I would never recommend this. It does not turn out well at all. (version 1)





So here were the redo pieces.... (version 2)





Once the silver had flashed, I layered on just enough of the red metal specks until the color matched the body's paint. To be sure all of the parts matched each other, I painted them all at the same time, being sure to spray the same amount of red paint layers. When you layer transparent type paints, each following layer gets darker, so I had to keep an eye on it to make sure we kept it as close to the body's color as possible. Once I was satisfied with the color match and evenness of the parts finish, I let the red flash.

Then it was time to clear. With the clear, you really have to watch out for runs. It's easy to run, because you have no color to judge how fast the paint is building. You need to get enough on to cover the part and provide an even surface finish. The clear is what gives you the slick final shine. Here is where you have to be very careful about dry spray. Again, paint the recesses first, as dry spray is better there then on your top surface.

Now you just have to allow the parts to FULLY dry before you reinstall them. Drying time will depend on the weather/temp conditions. Remember, you will be pushing these pieces back into place. Most are a bit clunky to reinstall, there is a good chance they will knock into something or slip and bang something. All of which can spell disaster for a part that is not FULLY dry. Rushing the install could mean all your hard work for nothing. Worst case.... remember the car is drivable without these pieces!

Here are a few parts after paint before the install...





You can see how the texture remained in our final paint finish. Again, the texture in our part is not a flaw, but intentional. On a slicked part, the very same texture would mean the part was painted badly. (poor prep, dry spray, over spray) However, our texture really adds to the dimension in the metallic paint. You can really see the metallic in these close up shots.







Here is the tape line on the shifter bezel I mentioned earlier. We taped it off at the natural recess on the piece, matching the bezel/dash break in the above radio and climate control bezel.



Once the housings are fully dry, the dash adjustable vent guts can be placed back in the housings. You simply place the vent in evenly side to side within the housing. You put the vent in all the way until it's clip rests on the pin inside. Once both sides are resting evenly on the pins in the housing, you can snap them back in place. The easiest way is to sit the housing on it's back with the vent facing up. You then can push simultaneously on either end, with your fingers on the center of the edge of the vent. Then the vent will snap into place in the housing.






"Live with no regrets, treat people the way you want to be treated, work like you don't need the money, love like you've never been hurt, and dance like you do when nobody's watching"...

Feb. 2011 ROTM ~ June 2012 ROTM ~ 2011 MM Chick of The Year
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post #12 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 10:32 PM Thread Starter
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**REINSTALLING THE PIECES**

Remember, your parts have fresh paint and you can easily marr them. Even pushing too hard with fingertips can slide, push or indent fresh paint. I try to always use an open palm to tap a piece back in place. The idea being to spread the impact load over a larger area, lessening the risk of pinpoint damage.

GAUGE BEZEL



Before you install the freshly painted bezel, be sure you reinstall the rubber piece that goes on the bottom between the bezel and the steering column.



Once that is done, its time to reinstall the painted gauge bezel. The reinstall is basically the reverse of the removal. The first thing you want to do is place the bezel on the steering column with the top tipped forward towards you. You are going to slip the bottom close to the gauges. Then you will carefully roll the top in under the dash. Watch the locating rubber bumpers; they will probably hit on the screw mounting tabs. As you are slipping the top in place watch the side mounting clips so they do not bind or catch.





Once the top is slipped in, you can maneuver things around to be sure all the clips are lining up with their holes.





Check that your headlight stalk is coming through it's hole. I pulled mine into it's full out position.



Then gently push and tap on the face to seat the clips. ** My paint was not fresh in these pictures. These pictures are only illustrating the location you want to apply pressure, not the method you should use to apply said pressure. Please only use an open palm to press the parts back in place.









Ok once everything is fully seated, reinstall the torx head screws on the top of the bezel.







Now you need to reinstall your headlight knob. Again, ours was a billet aftermarket piece, so I slipped it on and screwed in the set screw. I then made sure it was operating properly.





Here is the bezel fully installed...






"Live with no regrets, treat people the way you want to be treated, work like you don't need the money, love like you've never been hurt, and dance like you do when nobody's watching"...

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post #13 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 10:51 PM Thread Starter
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RADIO AND CLIMATE CONTROL BEZEL

The radio and climate control bezel goes in very easy. First, you need to push your switches back into their holes. You then reconnect the wiring to the switches. Now line up the bezel. Remember, your vents stick out the furthest, so you should start to slip these in first. Also remember the tabs they have at the very top. Line up the 4 clips with their holes. You can move the bezel around until you feel the locators start to catch their holes. Then you gently push the bezel back in place. It might take a few gentle pushes from your flat palm to get things fully seated.

SHIFTER BEZEL

Once the radio and climate control bezel is installed, you can reinstall your shifter bezel. You need to reinsert your cigarette lighter into the bezel. It should just clip right back in the hole. Installing the bezel is basically the reverse of the removal. You need to slip the arm of the shifter back through the boot. Then connect the wiring to the cigarette lighter. The yellow orange weather pack connects to the orange receptacle on the shifter bezel.





With your boot fully slipped onto your arm, you have to focus on reattaching the bezel to the console. The first step is to install the front of the lip to the center console where the front tab is. Again, be careful or you will snap the tab off. You need to slip this clip under first.



Then, you work the bezel back into position, making sure the 4 tabs get in their corresponding slots.



There are 2 on each side.





I was worried we might get some loosening at these clip points, (warnings from the forums) so I opted to take some thin sticky-back sheet felt and actually stick it to the metal clip where it meets the plastic slot. This worked wonders for tightening the piece up and stopping any road creaking. Once the front tab is in place and the tabs are seemingly seated in the area of the slots…



Then you just give the bezel a push at the sides in the center of the lip and then at the top (two areas you initially pried) and the piece snaps back in place. If you used any felt the piece will be TIGHT in place now.

Now you can screw your shifter knob back on. Here are the installed pictures....you can really see how masking the shifter bezel to line up with the radio bezel was a must. It kept the lines perfect.








"Live with no regrets, treat people the way you want to be treated, work like you don't need the money, love like you've never been hurt, and dance like you do when nobody's watching"...

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post #14 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 11:06 PM Thread Starter
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SIDE DASH VENTS

The passenger side is easy. Open the glove box...



Slip the vent back in. You need to push up on the bottom mounting tab where the screws install as you slide the vent into its hole.





Now you just have to get the top clips to slip under the edge of the dash. Just push the piece straight back into the dash at the top of the vent.







Make sure your holes line up and reinstall your screws on the bottom tab.



The driver side is not bad, either... the lower panel goes in just like it came out. First reinstall your vent. Slip it in and line up the holes and run in your 7mm screws... As with the passenger side, you might have to give the top a push to seat the tabs behind the edge of the dash.





Get your metal panel and 8mm screws. Hold the panel lined up with the holes.



Use your fingers to get the bolts started just a bit on both sides.





Then get your socket and run them in. Try to go back and forth between the sides to run them in evenly.



Then you have to install the plastic panel. You hold it up and try to line up the 3 clips with their holes. You might have to move it about a bit. You will feel the clips slip in when they find the holes.





Then you use a flat palm and wrap the piece back in tight.





Now you just have to reinstall the 2 bolts at the lower corners.



Here they are installed....






"Live with no regrets, treat people the way you want to be treated, work like you don't need the money, love like you've never been hurt, and dance like you do when nobody's watching"...

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post #15 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 11:36 PM Thread Starter
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SIDE DEFROST VENTS

With these, it is as simple as just popping them back in the holes CAREFULLY. They can be a bit stubborn and you don't want to crack them or hurt the paint. So just wiggle them in keeping an even pressure across the vent.







CENTER DEFROSTER VENT



Reinstalling the vent is as easy as placing it up to its recess in the dash. You peek a bit to see if the tabs are in about the right place. Then shimmy it about a bit to feel the tabs slip partly in the holes. Its hard to tell though because the recess is so deep.





Then, you just evenly push the piece down into place. I pushed a bit in each place there was a clip to partly seat them. I made my way across the dash following this method. Pushing one clip into its fully seated position too fast could throw the others off their holes, or even break a tab off. Once you get them all mostly the way in, then you can start to push them all the way down. It might take a few firm pushes to finally fully seat.





DOOR HANDLE BEZEL

The install on these is quite simple. You basically pull the door handle open and slip on the bezel. You get the bezel oriented in its position, then just lightly push it in. Since the larger tabs are at the front and bottom front edge... you may want to first seat these tabs behind the panel. So push the front and front bottom edge, then work your way to the top & back. It should pop right in.





ARMREST BEZEL

The install is easier than the removal, but it still takes careful work. You have to be very careful not to damage or crack the surface, as these bezels install very tightly.

(We will show the driver side as it has the extra switch. The passenger side goes on just the same). First, push your mirror switch back into the driver's side bezel. Then, bring your bezel over to the door panel. You first need to install the door and window switch wiring with the screws that came out of the bezel.



Now plug your mirror switch wiring back in...



Now you can let the front down to keep from damaging the wiring and switches.



Now the hard part... lining up the rear tab and the clip without cracking anything...





This takes a bit of maneuvering and gentle pushing above the clip point to work it in place.



Now don't slam it down, you still have to get the top clip oriented back on the door panel first.





The best thing is to gently push the tab down towards the hole and in.



Then press the top of the bezel towards the door. Now you can finish seating the lower clip fully.



Remember the ghost that showed up in the paint... 2 pairs of armrests had this ghost... It was sanded fine and did not show itself till the paint dried. I have yet to figure out this issue.





On the underside of the bezel, in the exact spot, there is a circle molded. I guess its something from the molding process.



So, we had to think smarter. With some creative ideas, we outsmarted it and covered it up! We got lucky and they came out perfect! Version 2 is definitely better.

Version 1..



Version 2...



You can see the unfinished bottom in version 1 is just not quite right...



Version 2...



Its definitely better with the finger pocket fully painted...

Version 1...



Version 2...



A close up of the switches....





And a shot of the full door...






"Live with no regrets, treat people the way you want to be treated, work like you don't need the money, love like you've never been hurt, and dance like you do when nobody's watching"...

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post #16 of 16 Old April 6th, 2011, 11:46 PM Thread Starter
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GLOVEBOX HANDLE BEZEL

Now if you were brave enough to disassemble the latch assembly, you now have to put it back the way you took it apart... LOL!



Once together, you reinstall the latch assembly back into the glovebox door... it only needs the one screw for now.





Now you need to reinstall the inner liner. It goes on the same way it came out.





Now you just have to reinstall the seven screws.



Now you have to push the tabs in on either side as you lift the the glovebox door back towards the dash to get the tabs to slip pass the dash.





The tabs are now holding the glovebox at its normal open position.



Here is the final product.... I added the satin cover to the glovebox handle at the same time.






"Live with no regrets, treat people the way you want to be treated, work like you don't need the money, love like you've never been hurt, and dance like you do when nobody's watching"...

Feb. 2011 ROTM ~ June 2012 ROTM ~ 2011 MM Chick of The Year
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