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[C2] Passenger Side Dash Pad

 
Old 01-14-2019, 08:33 AM
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59BlueSilver
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Default Passenger Side Dash Pad

Iím getting ready to replace the passenger side dash pad and have been doing a lot of searching and reading about it on this forum. Almost everyone recommends removing the dash. Are they kidding me?? Taking the instrument panel out with all those wires & connections! Is that really necessary just to replace the passenger side?
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Old 01-14-2019, 08:49 AM
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mike coletta
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Almost everyone recommends removing the dash
That's the way that I do it!!! Knock yourself out trying to do it with everything in the car.
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Old 01-14-2019, 09:51 AM
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Agree with 59BlueSilver there must be a way without removing entire dash.
This post should be interesting. Hope someone has experience replacing passenger side dash pad only.
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Old 01-14-2019, 09:55 AM
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Takeing the dash out is the only way to do it ,because its to hard to get to the clips near ths bottem near the radio area. But Its not difficult ,You can do it without taking the cluster out, but taking the cluster out is not difficult either, If your changing just one you will be mad that you didnt change both because they will be slightly different, You will notice , And that will drive you nuts, And then you will be takeing it all apart again to do the other side.
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Old 01-14-2019, 10:14 AM
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mike coletta
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Originally Posted by Yellow6t7 View Post
Agree with 59BlueSilver there must be a way without removing entire dash.
This post should be interesting. Hope someone has experience replacing passenger side dash pad only.
I have LOTS of experience, and it can be done. At a minimum, you'll have to remove the radio, radio side panels, and clock. THEN you have to get he old clips out. Not bad, just yank. NOW, you have to install the new clips. Don't look for any "tricks", as there are none. The reproduction clips are a little shorter than the originals, so that makes the job even MORE pleasant. Can't use the original clips, cause they'll break as soon as you try to expand them. The new pad will be really tight (thicker), so getting the clips to catch is a whole different story. Now you have the issue of "color" and "grain" match. Not gonna happen,. You COULD leave some of the clips off, but that would be kind of bubba. It can be done.......

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Old 01-14-2019, 10:38 AM
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mblake101
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Mike is right.
It is was quite a challenge on my old 65 fuelie. Luckily, it was a convertible and I psychologically didnít feel so constricted in being contorted upside down and sideways getting to those lower clips. It was a tad frustrating trying to get them out without gouging out the fiberglass clip holes. In those days, there was no LED lighting options, so I was dying down there with a hang down shop light and flashlight. Lighting, a good needle nose pliers and a couple blade screwdrivers got it done. I felt quite accomplished when finished, but it took patience and a few stretch breaks.

Last edited by mblake101; 01-14-2019 at 10:39 AM.
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Old 01-14-2019, 10:40 AM
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Appreciate the comments. The aftermarket radio doesn’t work and the clock is bad so they will have to come out. What about the controls? A good point has been made about the pads not matching, will think about that. In one post I saw, DUB mentioned using a different fastener that was easier to install. I’d be interested in knowing about that.
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Old 01-14-2019, 10:59 AM
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mblake101
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Great thing to consider. Just do yourself a big favor, and buy two pads. Don’t know your year model or interior color, but Willcox has a black set listed in the For Sale section at a good discount, Good Luck.
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Old 01-14-2019, 11:00 AM
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I did my passenger side a year ago. I pulled the old one out and reskinned it, bought it from Al Knock when they sold them NOT as a pair.I was not concerned about the difference compared to the drivers side, It looks very similar except a little more "matte" finish. If i apply some product then it almost looks the same.

Having a convertible is probably much easier than coupe for all the contortionist positions you get into. It is a tedious, PITA job, your fingers will hurt, body will hurt.
I didnt remove radio or clock or drivers side pad, i did remove the passenger seat for easier access.
The clip at the very bottom by the radio is the hardest to get in and out. I was able to get it out without removing radio. I did work that final clip open and closed it again, before i inserted. It was much easier to seat.
Several different pairs of needle nose pliers are best, get some of the angled ones.
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Old 01-14-2019, 11:04 AM
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Frankie the Fink
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I wouldn't want to have tackled it with the dash in the car - it was tough enough with it out...




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Old 01-14-2019, 01:12 PM
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One question is there foam or some other material between fiberglass shell and new vinyl?
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Old 01-14-2019, 02:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Jrs66vette View Post
One question is there foam or some other material between fiberglass shell and new vinyl?
If you buy pads, yes. If you buy vinyl no. With vinyl you will be re-skinning the pads.
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Old 01-14-2019, 02:27 PM
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If the "foam" underneath that is original is in good shape then you don't need to do anything other than apply new vinyl skin. If you have some deterioration or unevenness,chunks missing, etc then put thin foam liner tightly stretched and glued down with spray adhesive. Wrap the foam around the front edge so there is no seam For the most part the old vinyl on mine peeled right off except a few spots that took the foam with it. I went ahead and did the foam wrap on mine.
I should have taken pictures during the process.
Use high quality adhesive, and have a good hair dryer or heat gun available. I had good 3M brand but ran out and started using some other I had and it took a lot longer
The hardest part was getting the new hand grip plastic part installed, my original was broken in 4 pieces, the reproduction was difficult to line up with the holes (holes seem just slightly off)
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Old 01-14-2019, 02:56 PM
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In my case the DS pad was badly cracked and it was obvious the foam underneath had swollen and was discolored - there was no way I was re-skinning that so I went with new Corvette America pads and don't regret it... I also didn't trust my skills enough to do a great job re-skinning something that is so in-your-face every time the car is driven so my decision was easy...
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Old 01-14-2019, 03:14 PM
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I have replaced many set of dash pads and have always removed the dash those clips are very difficult to install. In the time you have been trying to find a easier way to do it you could have had the dash out it's not that hard.JMO
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Old 01-14-2019, 03:25 PM
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Totally agree - if you have some reason you're going "deep" into the interior anyway its a good excuse to change the pads. In my case adding A/C and a broken weld on the clutch pedal down road were incentive enough to fix the pads....

Pad replacement can turn into project creep though as its a good time to get gauges restored, deal with wiring issues, upgrade the radio and on and on...
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Old 01-14-2019, 08:17 PM
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Dave Tracy
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I removed my dash to access the clips. I had my original pads redone by Al Knoch. I am not at the point yet to put the dash back in with my carpeting project still in the works.
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Old 01-14-2019, 11:35 PM
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59BlueSilver
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I think if I was planning on doing anything more, I would definitely remove the dash. I think what I’m hearing is removing the old pad is doable, though difficult. But installing the new pad is more difficult. That’s why I would like information on that fastener that DUB was talking about, see post 7.

https://www.corvetteforum.com/forums...-dash-pad.html
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Old 01-15-2019, 06:46 AM
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I think you're setting yourself up for a frustrating experience as mark6669 said no matter what fasteners you use....by not removing the dash frame. Some on here search hopefully for "silver bullets" for some repair jobs and there just flat out aren't any.

I was a first time pad replacer on my 63 and used the butterfly clips and once you understand them its no big deal. I saved about 90% of the old ones and used just a few new ones. The issue is that you have to push hard on them to make sure the smaller jaws expand INSIDE the dash frame - prob the same with other fasteners too. I know some who use small screws but my fear would be going through the pad with those.

Attached Images
File Type: pdf
Dash-Pad-Clip-Install.pdf (156.1 KB, 34 views)

Last edited by Frankie the Fink; 01-15-2019 at 06:48 AM.
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Old 01-15-2019, 08:15 AM
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Yes, I understand them, watched a video on YouTube. I’m only thinking about using that new fastener in those hard to reach areas. I guess I can try it, and if I can’t get the new pad installed properly, I can remove the dash at that time. I just don’t want to get into project creep!
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