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Topic Review (Newest First)
August 7th, 2020 11:22 PM
Super_Villain The bezels arrived earlier in the week. After the disappointing issues with the hydro dipping (which set the project back 12-14 weeks!) I have been anxiously awaiting the parts and the carbon fiber treatment...they turned out great!

The carbon fiber was done thru David Schamerhorn of Exotic Car Gear and took about 6 weeks door to door. The process employed is referred to by different names...carbon fiber overlay/skinning/lamination. You can read more about it here: Its real carbon fiber with the resin and all- laid over your parts. David has been easy and great to work with every step of the way. He is also responsive to messages and addressed a volley of questions I lobbied his way during the process.

I spent a lot of time researching this and many hours contacting vendors. Exotic Car Gear had some of the best work, the best pricing, and the fastest turnaround time. I went with the 2x2 twill weave pattern. I am actually glad the hydro dipping did not work out otherwise I would have never come across this option for the interior!

August 7th, 2020 10:50 PM
Super_Villain Thanks guys!

Widow Maker - Thanks for the reminder re: the seat levers. I have sent them the note to be aware and do it right the first time. Hopefully it was just a one time mistake from them. Good to hear they ultimately addressed it for you.
August 3rd, 2020 09:34 AM
WDW MKR Loving the progress! The door panels are maybe a bit more than I would do, but look very high quality. I love the wheel.

I might have mentioned this in my PMs or previous replies, but note that LeatherSeats sent me bottom seat covers with symmetrically placed openings for the recline levers. This obviously didnít work when the levers are positives on the same side for each seat. They resolved the issue and sent me a new cover, but I more quickly just cut and re-welded the lever on the frame for the passenger seat to use the first cover. I asked them to correct their pattern file for future orders, but something you might want to ask about.

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August 3rd, 2020 08:21 AM
ultradriver10000 that is sweet! good work
August 3rd, 2020 07:01 AM
luxuryrules I'm digging those quilted door panels. Nice!
August 3rd, 2020 02:12 AM
Super_Villain Its been awhile so time for some updates....

Driver side door panel done and installed.

Steering wheel from Aza Auto Wheel arrived and sitting here waiting for install.

They really did an awesome job on this custom steering wheel. From the leather to the carbon fiber to the index stripes to the stitching and the flat bottom...everything came out as I specified and looks gorgeous. The guys at Aza packed the wheel incredibly well and then placed it in a custom wood box!

Also very happy that I took the extra step to have them wrap the rear cover in leather.

Other news...

Main cluster bezel is returning from having carbon overlay done. Should be in my hands next week! I can't wait to see these parts after the terrible disappointment from the hydro-dip shop. More importantly, the main cluster bezels were THE key set of parts holding up the interior from progressing. I need these in first before installing the leather console and driver side lower panel. I also want these in before replacing the steering wheel. are making a set of custom seat covers for my project. I am working thru their LS Prime Division. I am in the queue and they are thinking late Aug. or early Sept. Then of course I will need to have my upholstery shop install them.
June 19th, 2020 09:15 PM
Super_Villain I installed the passenger side door panel and it turned out great. Due to the tight space in the garage, I am doing each door panel one at a time. The driver's side door panel is next, but its not simply a matter of pulling it off and sending to the upholstery shop. With all the stereo gear, my situation and what I have to deal with is somewhat unique compared to most folks.

In stock form, the Gen 3 Viper door panel was designed to be not much more than a lightweight cover...not unlike a lot of cars. The main large lower panel is attached to the top two sill trim and door latch cover with nothing more than upholstery staples. There are 4 screws that tighten it down to the door itself, but those mainly support the door pull and door latch cover. The remaining 3 attachment points are just plastic push pins. The heaviest item, the speaker, is actually bolted to the door itself to bear the weight and the panel with the grill just sits over it.

Al & Ed's Autosound screwed up here when they modified my door panel. They cut it open, molded an MDF frame to the lower door panel section and blended it in with bondo. Then they hung about 6 lbs of speakers and electronic crossovers TO the door panel. Yes... they changed it so that all that weight is now hanging ON the door panel and not supported by the door frame. Over time, with only staples holding the top and bottom sections of the panel together, the lower panel began to sag and pull away causing the panel to rub on the sill every time the door was opened or closed.

So I had to go in and fix this mess by re-engineering their setup. My main goal was to make the connection between the upper and lower panels stronger so they would not sag under the weight of the equipment.

First step was to epoxy and fill cracks found in the plastic door latch cover. I used JB Weld's Plastic Bonder High Strength Structural Adhesive. I have used this in the past with great success. In an effort to reinforce the lower part of the latch cover, I added a 1/16th inch layer of ABS plastic. I cut a form out of paper then cardboard and finally on the ABS itself.

The additional layer of plastic was bonded to the latch cover with a foundation of Plastic Bonder. Definitely felt more rigid afterwards.

The rubberized soft touch coating was also starting to wear in a few spots. I used 90% isopropyl alcohol, a plastic putty knife, and about an hour of elbow grease to scrap it all off. Additionally, I bonded some metal washers to the bolt holes. Here is the "cleaned up" latch cover next to the one on the driver's side which still has the soft touch coating on it.

Looking for a stronger attachment between the lower portion of the panel and the upper piece, I went with an approach that would maximize the clamping force between the two pieces. I drilled holes and used metal brackets, machine screws, nuts and washers to essentially bolt together the two halves. This was only done on the main weight bearing sections at the front while one set of L brackets was used at the rear of the door panel for good measure. In between, we used heavier duty upholstery staples for the non-load bearing section.

For additional rigidity and better distribution of load, metal brackets were used on the top and the bottom wherever I could fit them:

And finally here is the door panel installed! This is without the grills or x-over cover yet just to show off the gear:

With the grills and covers on:

View from inside:
June 15th, 2020 05:02 PM
Super_Villain Yeah I have seen from great hydro dip work. The guys I used were highly rated and their stuff looked good. However, they have been super busy (as most of shops have been during the lockdown) and it was clear they rushed my project thru even though I waited 6 weeks when they said it would take 3. And then it spent more time in the hands of the assistant/intern than it did the main guy. The result was terrible looking. The fact that they let it out the door in that state was worse.

I have been getting quotes from other reputable hydro dip shops and the turnaround time is either the same or longer than doing a carbon fiber overlay. The pricing for new prep and hydro dip is also coming back as almost the same or within a few hundred dollars of doing a carbon fiber overlay. So I committed today and shipped the parts out for a carbon fiber overlay of the 3 main interior bezels. Should be done within 4-5 weeks.
June 12th, 2020 11:42 PM
The Interior Upgrade Project

If you want hydro-dip, donít let that experience change your mind. Sounds like shoddy work. I did some hydro-dipped interior and engine pieces with my 03 Cobra that looked phenomenal and had none of the issues you mentioned.

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June 10th, 2020 08:35 PM
Super_Villain Door panel top is aligned and bolted up to lower panel.

Now for some bad news...every project has its set backs and I just got hit with a double whammy.

During final QA of the steering wheel, the guys at Aza Wheels noticed a hairline crack in the top resin. So they are redoing the carbon fiber. I appreciate their attention to detail and better that this was found and addressed before shipping. Unfortunately it could potentially set the steering wheel part of the project back by 30 days. The extra time this will take is what it is and overall this is not as huge of a deal since the steering wheel does not hold up other interior parts being done.

This next one however is a big deal. I got the 3 main bezel components back from hydro dipping and they look terrible. Dust nibs all over, excess runs in the clear, really poor surface prep showing through...This was my firs experience with hydro dipping and I am quite disappointed. I am now debating if I should try a different hydrodip service or just ditch the idea altogether and go full real carbon fiber overlay. These bezel parts do prevent other interior pieces from being able to be installed since they have to go in first. Sigh....
June 8th, 2020 09:45 PM
Super_Villain Thanks! Yea I had the same reaction when Aza Auto Wheel showed it to me.

Door panel is coming along. Here is a rough mockup of it...

Still sorting out some fitment and clearance issues.
June 8th, 2020 10:33 AM
WDW MKR That wheel looks great!

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June 5th, 2020 11:32 PM
Super_Villain Finished Steering Wheel! So purdy!

Work done by Aza Auto Wheel

I have been super impressed by their work and customer service.
June 1st, 2020 09:48 PM
Super_Villain Door panel materials finally arrived today.

May 28th, 2020 04:07 PM
Super_Villain I just received a preview pic of how the steering wheel is coming along.

They have more polishing to do in the carbon fiber areas, but so far it is looking great.

I did quite a bit of research when it came to finding a company to build my custom steering wheel.

In the end, I selected Aza Auto Wheel

I always had a good feeling when dealing with Aza Auto Wheel and their responses regularly instilled me with confidence. I still had to do my due diligence reviewing and comparing them against other companies. Aza Auto Wheel came out on top for several reasons:

  1. While a number of vendors were very diligent in responding to my emails and going through my questions (even over a weekend), Aza Auto Wheel was just that little bit more thorough in addressing each question. Also on some of my questions I could see that they were already coming up with design solutions and options.
  2. Their pricing tiers made the most sense. Some other vendors were charging the same price whether I selected leather or carbon fiber. I also appreciated that their charges for certain upgrades were very reasonable.
  3. All the finalists on my list produced what looked like excellent work. However, I felt that Aza Auto Wheel would be easier to work with and would be more on top of every custom detail that I had in my long list.
  4. They have a US footprint based in Washington. The work on the steering wheel is done at their factory in the Ukraine. Other vendors have their wheels built in China or Taiwan. The quality of work looked fine and everyone uses OEM cores, but I prefer to limit the amount of China or Taiwan stuff in the Viper.
  5. I did not need to send in my wheel. They already had a core and were able to get started quickly. This steering wheel project started on April 28th and now 30 days later, May 28th, you can see the current pic of where we are at. Once I receive the new wheel and install it I send them back my old wheel for a core credit.

So far the process of working with Aza Auto Wheel has been incredibly smooth and easy. They even provide me with updates before I have to ask.
May 21st, 2020 08:15 PM
Super_Villain Yea that is a hell of a deal! Normally a set of just covers from in their Ecstasy Leather runs almost $1300. For hundreds less than that you are also including the seats too! Used Gen 3/4 seats with OEM covers typically go for $800-$1,000 for the pair. So someone would be getting a killer deal if the color and options fit their design.
May 21st, 2020 08:03 PM
WDW MKR No worries at all. Iíll add the info you suggested. As you likely know, Iím asking less than just the covers cost!

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May 19th, 2020 09:27 PM
Super_Villain Just saw your classified listing. The seats do look brand new. And that is an amazing price for the covers AND the seats! You should list that they are from and that you went with their Ecstasy Leather. Those are good selling points.

I think I will need to do too many modifications to fit my interior design. Good luck with the sale man! Whoever picks them up is getting a super great deal!
May 19th, 2020 09:10 PM
The Interior Upgrade Project

Completely understand you might want to go an entirely different route. Just figured Iíd mention since you are looking. To answer your questions:

1 - with such limited mileage, theyíre practically new
2 - itís the upgraded leather and alcantara
3 - seat back is carpet like factory

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May 17th, 2020 08:53 PM
Super_Villain Hmmm...tempting, but I would have to do a lot of modifications to it like Leather Double Diamond stitching on down the whole middle area and seat, change stitching color and replace the back carpet with a leather or vinyl material. Might be more trouble than its worth. However PM me your price and I can think about it.

-Overall condition? Looked pretty nice in the one photo
-What leather option did you go with standard or their Ecstasy leather?
-Looking more closely... does your seat back stick with the carpet or did you do something else there?

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