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2005 SLK55 AMG /2005 SLK350
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I've had good luck with epoxy, but you must be positively patient, and creative. It helps if you have all the broken bits and pieces. Plan on 3-4 days. And plan on painting the entire thing afterwards. Buy the large tube of epoxy, you'll need it.
 

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*Premium Member
2001 SLK200K/2001 SLK320
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3,704 Posts
It’s quite fragile for some reason. Probably UV related.
I've had good luck with epoxy, but you must be positively patient, and creative. It helps if you have all the broken bits and pieces. Plan on 3-4 days. And plan on painting the entire thing afterwards. Buy the large tube of epoxy, you'll need it.
Seems to be the way to go ~ there are several decent videos on YT on this very subject - GL (y)

I haven’t been to Wensleys before, I do like a pork pie. Are you related ?
Bestie, shipped himself and family over there in '03, I'm shamelessly plugging but yeah, go pay Tone and Maria a visit - Wensleys Traditional Fine Fayre – Wensleys British Foods
 

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*Premium Member
1998 SLK230
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65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Started fixing up the console with fibreglass. Paint comes off easily with a scraper and dabbing with an acetone soaked rag, water softens it too but not enough to make it an easy job to scrape off and given the fragile nature of my plastic I didn’t want to stress it too much. A couple more chunks still fell off.
Patching the snapped off parts back in with fibreglass went fairly well, the resin doesn’t always like to stick to the original super well, I must remember to wipe it down with acetone first or might try a solvent like methyl ethyl ketone (pvc glue surface prep) to make it tacky first.

The mounting for the bracket that holds the slide for the handbrake is only held on with 4 tiny self tapping screws into lugs, they were all snapped off so I rebuilt that area of the missing spacers with a 3d pen running ABS, wrapped the bracket in foil and blutaked it into position before fibreglassing around my blobs of ABS. I will drive a heated screw in later.
2 of the hooks on the front of the console were missing, been building them up with the 3D pen too.

pic of just after fibreglassing around the hand brake cover bracket. The repaired front of console which was snapped out and the start of rebuilding the hooks on the front.

Motor vehicle Automotive tire Hood Automotive design Automotive exterior
 

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*Premium Member
1998 SLK230
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65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #24 ·
The veneer arrived todays, its gorgeous. Then I dropped into a resin specialist in a boat building area abd asked their advice on gluing wood and or plastic to car interior plastic. Came home with an R180 resin kit and some insanely strong fast set glue (Plexus MA300 which claims 1000psi after 15 minutes) as I a lot of the veneer will be easier to hold on by hand for a short period of time than attempting to clamp for hours.
About to do a couple of test glue ups on an invisible part to see how it goes.

Wood Food Cutting board Ingredient Cuisine


Pulled the armrest apart today, it rattled on the inside and the front clip did not operate properly, plus it had dirty vinyl on it, I'm going to recover it in some goat leather I have. Really hard to seperate as you have to break a glue bond they did not want to come apart ever. A butter knife as a pry bar was a suitable tool. Lots of snapping and cracking noises were made but it will glue back together easily.

Rectangle Wood Building Gas Font
 

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*Premium Member
1998 SLK230
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65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #25 ·
I was going to cover over they original vinyl with goat skin but decided it's overkill and a bit fragile. Removed the rubbish foam backed vinyl junk and used a fairly heavy leather instead.

Took quite a bit of work to repair three catch area. Looks like somebody forced it open while locked which broke the guide off above the latch and tore the latch outwards breaking both of the sides that stop the latch coming out to far. Built them up with 3d pen and glued the top part back in with my super resin. Works fine now and the vacuum lock also latches ok.

No need to glue it back together just yet, the thickness of the leather all around between the 2 plastic parts holds the armrest together tightly needs quite a bit of force to separate it and i don't yet trust my latch repair will hold up.

Checking where the grain will go. (Trying to upload image here but keep getting security error) ok worked if I edit it in


Hood Wood Bumper Automotive exterior Rectangle


Bought a steam cleaner to try and bend laminate, some vacuum storage bags and a couple of silicone pet feeding pads that I can use to stop epoxy sticking to the bag, also to cover the sharp parts of the console that easily punch through the bag.

First bit of veneer attached, went with contact adhesive at this point. Figure if I epoxy over the top then glue is a non issue.

I went with a complicated part as this is very visible from the drivers seat so I think the side piece is less important but should be easier to match grain anyway.

Hood Motor vehicle Bumper Automotive exterior Automotive design
 

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*Premium Member
1998 SLK230
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65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #28 ·
Heh cheers, got to do something while waiting for my head to get back from the machinists.
showed my brother the previous pic and he was dubious the gaps could be filled at all. Man of little faith.
Cut a few slivers and glued them in and started sanding a little and it comes up 1000% better.
Added more light to the situation too.

Automotive tire Hood Motor vehicle Automotive design Bumper
 

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*Premium Member
1998 SLK230
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65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #29 · (Edited)
Under the handbrake looks a bit like a patchwork quilt but it doesn't bother me there, simply no way a rank amateur like me can cover the compound curves in there smoothly. I kind of like the effect anyway, adds character. Just going into town to buy some wood filler and plastic primer and paint. Decided to paint the lower part of this console (area below the groove inn the side) as it's invisible between the seats and saves me some veneer which I would struggle to make it last few entire project.

Found quite a few modern solutions to old school veneering that save a lot of time. A paper guillotine cuts small pieces cross grain without tearing it apart. A little drum sander bit on a dremel beats anything else for trimming back veneer ends.

Progress..

Hood Bumper Automotive exterior Wood Motor vehicle

Edit:
Painted the lower part Cream colour then looked at a bunch of interior photos of slk’s for sale and realised that part is a lot more visible than I thought, Now tossing up whether to add leather, might wait till it’s all done and decide then.
 

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*Premium Member
1998 SLK230
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65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #32 ·
I think I still want to sand and buff it but i wanted an interior photo i could photoshop different colour interiors onto so i dropped the console back in for a look.
I think I'll end up using black faux suede on the lower door trims and roof lining and a vinyl wrap on the door handles, carbon fibre might be to much and look silly, maybe leather, not sure.

Still haven't worked out how to pull the sides of the footwell out. Need to buy more veneer anyway
I reckon it's going to look ok.

My handbrake handle is falling apart in chunks too. will probably turn up something in oak for that.

Vehicle Car Steering part Motor vehicle Automotive design
 

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*Premium Member
1998 SLK230
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65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #34 ·
I'm not much of a photo editor but managed to get enough of an idea about what it will look like using GIMP.
So this is finishing the veneering up the side plastic. ( have to buy more as I ran out, I really should measure things)
A black suede on lower trim as this area is sticky to the touch on mine, feels gross. The upper part is ok. This will be left over trim from redoing the roof lining.
A brown leather on the handles as I have an entire hide of it here and I think it contrasts with the wood veneer ok.
2 pieces of burl on the glovebox, 2 more identical pieces are going over the instrument panel.

It’s pretty colourful and probably tacky, I don’t care, I have no taste and this is my idea of fun lol.

Vehicle Car Motor vehicle Automotive design Car seat cover
 

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*Premium Member
1998 SLK230
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65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #35 ·
And now I need to start sculpting the missing parts around the instruments. If anybody has any great ideas please chime in. I bought some heavy duty disposable aluminium bbq trays. Idea is to tape pieces of them to them to the existing plastic and attempting to roughly get the shape required, then using that as a support add fibreglass, then remove the aluminium and sculpt the glass to shape with a dremel sander.
Then add more fibreglass to the rear to add support then veneer the front.

Vision care Goggles Eyewear Eye glass accessory Personal protective equipment
 

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**Premium Member '02 R170 SLK V8 5.0 & '00 SLK320
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8,685 Posts
It’s pretty colourful and probably tacky, I don’t care, I have no taste and this is my idea of fun lol.
:ROFLMAO:

Not my cuppa, but as I always say, at the end of the day, your money, your car, your choice ;)

As long as you are happy with it sod what anyone else thinks (y) (y) (y)
 

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1998 SLK230
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65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #37 ·
Im not sure its my taste either tbh but the idea was to add multiple layers of composite materials and wood veneer is my best option i think.

Starting on the dash parts now, used foil from bbq trays to form a likeness of the missing plastics and gave it a light misting of canola oil (the natural friend of the bbq tray), added fibreglass and just 20ml of resin. Just doing one side first to see what works and what doesn't.

Eyewear Automotive lighting Personal protective equipment Quill Feather

Road surface Wood Gas Asphalt Concrete
 

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*Registered
2017 SL400
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1,580 Posts
I was going to mention that veneering is very tricky (I did some simple pieces and vacuum bagged the bits) however, I see you have now established that it is not straightforward.

It might be worth trying pink foam (building insulation) as a mould if you still have more to do. Very easy to carve and shape.

Usesful info on fiberglassing here: https://www.youtube.com/user/easycompositestv
 

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*Premium Member
1998 SLK230
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65 Posts
Discussion Starter · #39 ·
I reckon veneering was less trouble than I thought it would be though I was originally intending large bits of veneer on complex curves and soon realised that was no go. Making a jigsaw of little pieces turned out easier than I thought though. Of course the result is not perfect but at all times I kept in mind that I was covering shattered and cracked plastic and almost nothing I could do would make it look even worse.
I played around with vacuum bagging the console but it was just too unwieldy, contact adhesive did the job. I might try it on the instrument panel though as I want that sub layer of resin instead of contact. The data sheet for the resin I have says not to go below 0.5 bar or it can fail to cure, I don’t have a proper vacuum pump though, either the old Hoover will do or I might have a play with an old fridge compressor.

Interesting link, will have to go into depth on that channel later.
 
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