Veneering a Classic Car Dash - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 6 Old 06-16-2016, 06:17 PM Thread Starter
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Veneering a Classic Car Dash

I am veneering paces of a dash from a Fiat spider and need some suggestions. I am using a raw Madrone burl over different substrates. I have been using Titebond II and an iron to attach the veneer, which may not be the best for this application. Veneering the plywood pieces seemed to go OK, but now I am needing to veneer a couple of metal pieces. I have one metal dash piece that is about 8" by 16" with a 60 degree 1/2 " radius bend in it. I have been having an issue with bubbling after I heat the glue to attach the veneer. First question, when using this method is it advisable to use the steam setting or not? I thought I would need to steam the piece so it could be bent after I heat the glue to attach. Should I steam and bend the veneer prior to attaching? Thanks for any input!
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post #2 of 6 Old 06-17-2016, 12:13 AM
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Heating glue while sometimes is necessary really should be avoided. If you get the glue hot enough to scorch it the bonding strength is weakened. You would be better off using an adhesive which is two parts such as a resin glue for wood. Titebond doesn't do well on larger areas. It tends to dry around the edges and stay wet in the middle. Resin glue would harden filled to the top of a sealed jar.

Bending a 1/2" radius is going to be very difficult. The veneer would have to be softened with a veneer softener or steamed and the part and the veneer put in a press. Usually you have to sandwich the part and veneer between an inside and outside mold and allow to dry. The mold could be made out of wood and clamped. Fiat probably had a hydraulic press and a wood welder to accelerate the drying time of the wood.
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post #3 of 6 Old 06-17-2016, 06:37 AM
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What Fiat are you working on. There were several that seemed to be called "spiders."

I once owned a 1960 Fiat 1500 (OSCA). Pictures?

George
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post #4 of 6 Old 06-17-2016, 10:07 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgeC View Post
What Fiat are you working on. There were several that seemed to be called "spiders."

I once owned a 1960 Fiat 1500 (OSCA). Pictures?

George
I am working on a 1985, the last year they made the spider until this year. Technically they were made and sold by Pininfarina from 1983 to 1985 and the car does not say FIAT anywhere, but that tends to confuse people. So I say it's a Fiat. The second pic show the dash. I am currently working on the center section, which is in two pieces. It breaks right above the radio. The bottom section is what I am currently working on.



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post #5 of 6 Old 06-17-2016, 10:14 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
Heating glue while sometimes is necessary really should be avoided. If you get the glue hot enough to scorch it the bonding strength is weakened. You would be better off using an adhesive which is two parts such as a resin glue for wood. Titebond doesn't do well on larger areas. It tends to dry around the edges and stay wet in the middle. Resin glue would harden filled to the top of a sealed jar.

Bending a 1/2" radius is going to be very difficult. The veneer would have to be softened with a veneer softener or steamed and the part and the veneer put in a press. Usually you have to sandwich the part and veneer between an inside and outside mold and allow to dry. The mold could be made out of wood and clamped. Fiat probably had a hydraulic press and a wood welder to accelerate the drying time of the wood.
Any brand names on the glue you are suggesting?

I wondering if I can use the existing metal piece as one of the molds? Could I steam the exact section of the bend in the veneer, bend the veneer, then clamp above and below the bend until dry? The problem I seem to be having is when I steam the veneer, it tends to bubble. If I limit the area I steam, I would limit the area of bubbling.
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post #6 of 6 Old 06-17-2016, 11:10 AM
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I never really pay attention to the brand of resin glue. Over my career I've mostly used Weldwood Plastic Resin Glue. It works fine but you have to store the can in a very dry place or it seems to go bad quickly. Regardless of brand if you open a can and if the powder seems to be glued together in the can don't attempt to use it.


I have a have a hunch the metal piece you need to laminate is sheet metal. If that is the case you would be better off re-enforcing the part with mold so it doesn't change shape. The problem you will have bending that small of a radius is the veneer is going to want to spit. To prevent this the veneer needs to be softened with a softener or steam and placed in a mold with the glue before it dries out. Still there is a chance this will happen if you do everything right. All you can do is try and see what happens. Use a slow set epoxy and be sure you use enough if there is a spot that doesn't completely lay down the void is filled with glue.
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