Interior Continued...
A Never Ending Exercise in Learning New Skills.

Once again I apologize for being a little late with my update. I learned a lot of new stuff this month which took a little extra time.

With the seats done the next task was to prepare the interior for carpet, door panels and weather stripping. I showed a teaser last month of the package shelf being constructed and that is now done. The Luan was cut using the original card board pieces as templates and then test fitted to make sure nothing was askew and any and all holes were drilled in the proper locations. Here's a look at the bare Luan temporarily installed.

The next task was to cover the package tray with scrim foam and then the same vinyl material that was used on the seats. The material wasn't wide enough to do this in one piece so there are two custom seams which give it a kind of classy look.

You can see the "WHITE" speakers which contrast nicely with the red vinyl. Some may not like the white but the choice is basically white or black and since there will be no black at all in the interior and the entire car will be bright white I felt the choice of white speakers worked better. You'll see when the interior is finished that it will all come together and the white speakers will add a bit of accent to all that red.

Here's a better look at the speakers. The same ones will go in each of the doors.

Another job was to install the sound barrier on the floor. This is a sticky backed foil faced sound barrier that is commercially available from Summit Racing and most all mail order houses. There are several different brands available. This one is made by FatMat and is called Rattle Trap. It is one of the less expensive choices and since this is a "low budget" build I really had no choice. I can tell no difference between this stuff and the Dynamat I had left over from a previous project, so I'm sure it will do an adequate job of keeping road noise to a minimum.

It lays down very well and is super sticky.

With all this done it was time for door panels. The original panels had a curved metal top section with a cardboard panel covered with vinyl. I found that I couldn't easily use the Luan for these panels since it was a bit too thick. I was able to find a Masonite product that is the right thickness and has a water proof coating on one side. This will allow me to skip the sheet plastic weather barrier if I want, but I'll install that anyway just for extra insurance. Here are the back seat panels. These are patterned after the originals so they fit exactly where the stock panels went. The front door panels were made the same way, using the originals as patterns. I did not take any pictures of those, sorry.

The panels were riveted to the metal sections as you can see and the clips were permanently locked in place using JB Weld. This keeps them from moving around and getting lost when you are constantly removing and installing the panels and it works very well. The holes for the arm rests and window handles have been drilled out as well. These are ready to be covered.

OK so the secret is out. One of the tasks that has taken a while was this custom embroidery. Yes the name of the car is Casper and since I'm doing a custom interior I felt that a little custom embroidery might be in order. These were done using my wife's cosmic computerized sewing machine. She does some custom stuff with it and I had her teach me how to program and set up the machine so I could do these two custom "Casper" name tags for door panels. Here are both panels finished and almost ready to install. The holes for the speakers, door handle, window crank, and arm rests will be cut out of the vinyl as they are installed. The Masonite panels already have these cutouts, the vinyl doesn't. The clips on these panels were locked in place using JB Weld and the metal top section was riveted to the Masonite the same way the rear panels were done.

The design carries the same diamond pattern as the seats and picks up the shape of the dash for their locations. This will be more evident once their installed. The rear panels will carry this same design. The vinyl was sewn the same way the seats were done using 1/4" scrim foam backing to give them padding and this allows the design can stand out a bit more and match the seats.

The holes for the speakers have been cut in the doors and all the wiring is in place. The same speakers used on the package tray will be used on the door panels so everything will match. You can tell by these pics where they speakers will be located.

My next task is to cover the rear panels and then adjust the windows so they fit properly in the roof rail weather stripping. This will take a few days to get right, then all the panels can be permanently installed. I'll be using matching red carpet as well. The carpet will not be the ready made stuff but will be custom fitted to the interior by yours truly.

That's it for this month.

Check back often for more updates...

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