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VITESSE 2L MK2 DASHBOARD WOOD VENEER


PatK
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Hi all, hopefully in the next month I will get round to re veneering my dashboard. I have seen a couple that have been re veneered with burr walnut, but I would like to keep mine original. I will sand down the old cracked lacquer and try not to go through the thin veneer below it. However if I do go through it and decide to put a new veneer on, does someone know what the original wood veneer was? It looks a straight grain light tan coloured wood, possibly cherry? I'm sure that someone in the club will know.

Thanks very much.  Pat

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9 minutes ago, Pete Lewis said:

yes skimmed  from  old pallets   Ha !

funnily enough, I was doing some work recently , breaking up pallets and some of the top planks seemed reddy and smoother (just nicer), I asked about this and apparently they were cherry, the thinner off cuts that they cant use go to pallets.   

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3 hours ago, PatK said:

Hi all, hopefully in the next month I will get round to re veneering my dashboard. I have seen a couple that have been re veneered with burr walnut, but I would like to keep mine original. I will sand down the old cracked lacquer and try not to go through the thin veneer below it. However if I do go through it and decide to put a new veneer on, does someone know what the original wood veneer was? It looks a straight grain light tan coloured wood, possibly cherry? I'm sure that someone in the club will know.

Thanks very much.  Pat

https://forum.tssc.org.uk/topic/1838-161120-silly-season-probably-how-not-to-restore-a-herald/page/38/?tab=comments#comment-96509

 Karl did an excellent job of re veneering the dashboard on his Herald, photo's and "how to" above.

Tony.

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32 minutes ago, Anglefire said:

When Dad did mine he thought the original was meant to be American Walnut. But I have no way of knowing for sure. (That's Spitfire 1500 BTW)

Thanks Mark, I will check out American Walnut it could be a candidate as I'm pretty sure that it is straight grain for the most part without burrs and knots. One thing that I do know is that veneer does not come cheap!!

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44 minutes ago, PatK said:

Thanks Mark, I will check out American Walnut it could be a candidate as I'm pretty sure that it is straight grain for the most part without burrs and knots. One thing that I do know is that veneer does not come cheap!!

When Dad did mine - he did give me a bit of a deadline as his wrists from 60odd years of woodwork had basically worn out of as soon as I could decide the veneer - and was done last October ish - (Can't believe it was that long ago TBH) - he had a fairly large stock of different ones so I could choose - I went Burr as it just looked better. Not original but then neither is my car! 

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It seems the original was American Walnut - you wouldn't believe how many reference books or suppliers simply refer to it as 'wood veneer dashboard' and never say what the veneer actually was... but I've found two or three re-veneering companies who will repair dashboards in 'the original American Walnut' so I'll opt for that.

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3 hours ago, poppyman said:

https://forum.tssc.org.uk/topic/1838-161120-silly-season-probably-how-not-to-restore-a-herald/page/35/  Sorry Pat it's in this section. and in the section before.

Tony.

 

Thats great, thanks Tony, very helpful.  Just been on e bay and it looks like it could be Cherry wood veneer, which is great as its much cheaper than burr walnut!

American Cherry Wood Veneer : Flexible Wood Veneer Sheet | eBay.webarchive

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1 hour ago, Colin Lindsay said:

It seems the original was American Walnut - you wouldn't believe how many reference books or suppliers simply refer to it as 'wood veneer dashboard' and never say what the veneer actually was... but I've found two or three re-veneering companies who will repair dashboards in 'the original American Walnut' so I'll opt for that.

Thanks Colin, I will have a look at that, but American Cherry seems to fit the bill also.

American Cherry Wood Veneer : Flexible Wood Veneer Sheet | eBay.webarchive

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Hi Pat,

Look up Chapman and Cliff on Google

They will supply either veneer as original or a veneer as you would get after several years of uv on it.

They will also supply the correct varnish as well.

Did mine a few years ago now and well pleased so hope this not out of date.

Steve

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4 minutes ago, Pdv said:

Hi Pat,

Look up Chapman and Cliff on Google

They will supply either veneer as original or a veneer as you would get after several years of uv on it.

They will also supply the correct varnish as well.

Did mine a few years ago now and well pleased so hope this not out of date.

Steve

Hi Steve, that is very useful info, I will do that and I particularly like the idea of the wood fading due to UV light, particularly as my Vitesse is a convertible.  Thanks Steve

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12 hours ago, PeteH said:

If I remember correctly, The Vittesse, unlike the Herald, has matching door cappings?. Or at least my Saloon did?. So you will need a veneer match to the cappings also?.

Pete

 

12 hours ago, PeteH said:

If I remember correctly, The Vittesse, unlike the Herald, has matching door cappings?. Or at least my Saloon did?. So you will need a veneer match to the cappings also?.

Pete

Yes thats correct Pete, I relacquered  the door capping last year, ( they are made from solid wood with no veneer and they now look good, but as is usual, they made the dashboard look shoddy! I have found a suitable veneer on e bay, but the guy is away until 27th December, then I can order it. Thanks Pete.

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9 hours ago, ed.h said:

Dont know if this is helpful, but the TR6 definitely used walnut on their dashes.  This is documented in several period ads.  My GT6 dash appears to be the same wood as the TR6. 

Ed

Thanks Ed, no, as far as I am aware the Vitesse and Herald did not use walnut on their dashes ( too expensive ? ). Lots of more expensive cars did though like the TR6 and Jags etc. Thanks.  Pat

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I've re-done the wood in both my 2000 and Spitfire and would say:

  1. I've yet to cleanly remove the lacquer from ANY piece of Triumph wood.  Either one bit of vaneer will be stuck better to the lacquer than the base wood, so come off, or I had to spend so long in an area with the heat gun to get one bit of lacquer to soften than a neighbouring bit of vaneer burns slights, or trying to sand through one spot of lacquer you realise you've also sanded through a neighbouring piece of vaneer too :(
  2. But re-vaneering isn't actually too hard - especially for flat pieces (the 2000 curved drivers dash panel is a real PITA and I found worse than the door cappings).
  3. If you need to keep the car on the road buy a second hand set of wood off eBay and either revaneer that or fit that while you revaneer yours.
  4. Follow https://www.frost.co.uk/how-do-i-re-veneer-my-cars-wood-trim/
  5. After a couple of light coats to seal the surface really pile on the Rustins Plastic Coating - you're not trying to bush on the smooth finish, but get a good thick layer on and then sand back to a flat smooth one.
  6. While wood's a natural material, so different pieces are different colours don't worry too much if it comes out too light - the wood in my 2000 has really mellowed after 12 months of UV.  The Spitfire's still lighter than I'd like but that's spent more time than usual in the garage vs out in the sun since I reveneered it over the last winter, due to Covid.
  7. If you're going to do the door cappings as well but enough wood for the lot, with spare in one go, as consecutive sheets of the same cut of wood.  The new wood may not end up the same colour as the original (+ its 50 years of 'maturing') but at least all the wood will be the same colour (unlike my 2000 where I DIDN'T do this - but still better than it was, so happy).
  8. Oh, and only go for a burr finish if you REALLY want one.  'Non-burr' vaneers are both much easier to work with (no flattening required) and you get a lot more choice in which area of the vaneer to use for each panel (with burr vaneers things like the glovebox lid MUST be done using the piece of vaneer cut out from the glovebox hole in the surrounding panel or the miss-match in the complex pattern really stands out - with non-burr you can maybe have an ugly but of the vaneer in the hole, then cover the lid with a different part of the same sheet and you can't tell when it's all done and fitted).
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1 hour ago, Mjit said:

I've re-done the wood in both my 2000 and Spitfire and would say:

  1. I've yet to cleanly remove the lacquer from ANY piece of Triumph wood.  Either one bit of vaneer will be stuck better to the lacquer than the base wood, so come off, or I had to spend so long in an area with the heat gun to get one bit of lacquer to soften than a neighbouring bit of vaneer burns slights, or trying to sand through one spot of lacquer you realise you've also sanded through a neighbouring piece of vaneer too :(
  2. But re-vaneering isn't actually too hard - especially for flat pieces (the 2000 curved drivers dash panel is a real PITA and I found worse than the door cappings).
  3. If you need to keep the car on the road buy a second hand set of wood off eBay and either revaneer that or fit that while you revaneer yours.
  4. Follow https://www.frost.co.uk/how-do-i-re-veneer-my-cars-wood-trim/
  5. After a couple of light coats to seal the surface really pile on the Rustins Plastic Coating - you're not trying to bush on the smooth finish, but get a good thick layer on and then sand back to a flat smooth one.
  6. While wood's a natural material, so different pieces are different colours don't worry too much if it comes out too light - the wood in my 2000 has really mellowed after 12 months of UV.  The Spitfire's still lighter than I'd like but that's spent more time than usual in the garage vs out in the sun since I reveneered it over the last winter, due to Covid.
  7. If you're going to do the door cappings as well but enough wood for the lot, with spare in one go, as consecutive sheets of the same cut of wood.  The new wood may not end up the same colour as the original (+ its 50 years of 'maturing') but at least all the wood will be the same colour (unlike my 2000 where I DIDN'T do this - but still better than it was, so happy).
  8. Oh, and only go for a burr finish if you REALLY want one.  'Non-burr' vaneers are both much easier to work with (no flattening required) and you get a lot more choice in which area of the vaneer to use for each panel (with burr vaneers things like the glovebox lid MUST be done using the piece of vaneer cut out from the glovebox hole in the surrounding panel or the miss-match in the complex pattern really stands out - with non-burr you can maybe have an ugly but of the vaneer in the hole, then cover the lid with a different part of the same sheet and you can't tell when it's all done and fitted).

Thank you so much, for that very comprehensive post. Luckily I bought a complete dashboard from e bay a year ago. The veneer is fine but the lacquer is badly cracked. I'm not going to bother with the heat gun, but am going to sand it down and try not to go through the veneer, which I will probably do!  Yes I agree burr walnut is a bas...rd, I did my Jag Mk2 which has a really curved dashboard top with it and it gave me all sorts of problems. I'll not be doing that again!

I have used Rustins plastic coating and as you say put it on really thick and sand it back afterwards and it does do a great job, except it does not like silicone contamination, which I learned to my cost.  I have already done the door capping and they came up just fine, but that made the dashboard look really shabby, so thats why I have to do the dash. Yes, I take your point about the UV fading of the colour and I have seen both a suitable straight grain cherry and teak on e bay and will try and get a sample in the New Year when the guy returns to UK.

As an afterthought I wonder if anyone has ever tried using clear glass fibre resin brushed on thickly and then sanded back, that would be interesting and very long lived!

Thanks again.   Pat

 

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A dashboard is essentially an outdoor application, even for a non-convertible.  For a dashboard finish, look to the wood boat crowd.  A true marine varnish has attributes that will work well on a dash.  I used Epiphanes, but there are others.

Ed

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