I'm stepping into uncharted territory. I'm building an amp rack in the back an I'm going to use wood veneer to make it look like a nice, dark cherry wood finish. Cherry has a little red in it and I plan to add several clear coats to make it look real nice and classy.
I'd like to see if I can add a few wood accents up front to tie everything together. I don't want anything tacky or cheap looking, but any wood up front in a TA might be considered so by some. I've seen wood overlay kits for trucks and didn't really care for them as they looked tacked on. I'm trying to go for a classy German luxury car look. I figure anything that is flat or close to flat can be covered. This is on a 99 Trans Am. I think the door panel inserts can be done as well as the switch covers. The whole door panel insert is pretty big, so I'm not so sure about that. Maybe the upper half split behind the grab handle. I caould use real wood there.
I think I could make a curved panel above the glovebox and below the airbag from either real stained wood or sheetmetal with a veneer overlay. I did a Photoshop below. That might look OK. I could use adhesive to attach it. Now I would need something on the drivers side to balance it out. Anyone have any ideas?
If you have any pics of wood grain kits or interiors can you please post them here. I'm tring to find everything I can.
I may have spoken to fast about the door panels. Here is a quick Photoshop of them in Cherry.
That looks way better than I thought it would. Way better. I could either cut out the wood inserts from cherry and stain/clear it or use a wood veneer kit over MDF.
I could even have a small pontiac symbol airbrushed in the middle to add a little something extra. Any opinions or thoughts?
Maybe just the door panels alone up front would be enough up front to compliment the rear mounted wood amp rack? It might be.
Raw wood can be used, but I was thinking veneers may be the way to go. It's a thin panel of wood already finished or it can be raw. It's commonly used on speaker enclosures, violins, cellos, tables, etc...
I mention luxury cars, but to tell you the truth, most don't use veneers, they use a paint like process to make it look real.
I guess not many people are going to know about veneers. I didn't much until recently either. Almost all your high end speaker enclosures, like $1000 and up, will use veneers on them. It can be pricey and require work to cut and glue them and then you have to clear them several times to really get that deep shine, but I think it would be worth it.
Here are some example pieces finished in veneers.
My car is actually black with the charcoal interior. I was just searching for good dash and door pics as I don't have any from my car.
I'm thinking cherry as I like that bit of red in it. Virtually all the woods are available and there's not much price difference as far as veneers go so I could go with whatever I want. I do prefer the darker colors, but with a bit of warmth to it.
I have a few pics of wood kit's for TA's like below, but I just think it's tacky.
I think if I did the door panels I would need one thing in the center of the dash to balance it out. That first pic of the passenger side panel would throw off the balance. Since I plan to mount a 10.4" LCD screen in the radio area for my PC, why not make the bezel out of solid wood and then stain and clear it? I think that center piece with the doors should be enough up front to blend it with the rear wood amprack without going into cheesy or distastefull territory.
Here is a pic of the bezel. This is from another member who used a factory vinyl to cover it. I'm not even going to try and PS a wood grain over it because it would never look realistic. You'll just have to imagine a wooden ring with the same cherry finish.
What do you think of the 3 piece front idea? Too much, too little or just right?
like the other guy said...looks cool as hell..just dunno if it would go with an f-body
Why not? Is it just because we are not used to seeing them on the F-body?
I think it would be OK in my case. With just the small trim ring around the LCD and then the door panel inserts, it's going to be fairly stock looking up front. I don't think the doors are going to be too overpowering simply because of the dark wood used. Now if it were a white or yellow wood, then yea, it would stand out more. Also keep in mind I'm going to have a **** load of wood in the back for the amprack and maybe the sub encloure as well. Overall, I'm feeling pretty good about it.
It would be nice just to be different. I could be that "wood grain guy" on these forums or something. Who knows, the door panels might catch on. Think of the darker colored woods that are almost black. It would be like having glossy black inserts, but have the wood grain in them. That by itself sounds cool to me. I just have to figure out how it can be done and look "proper".
Veneer is not too bad to work (X-acto, contact cement)
and you can get small quantities mail-order from the
antiques restoration places (Van Dyke's, Constantine's,
etc.). English cars tended to use burl walnut, cherry
might be too subtle a grain, use stain to get the color
and don't worry so much about the native wood tone,
just the grain and the general darkness. Most veneer
will form easily in one dimension but resist the other
(cross-grain, easy; with-grain, stiff). If you want to
form to a complex surface, well, it'll either be a science
project or a doomed project. Maybe get a new bezel
CNC'd out of plank walnut
I once picked up a project car (Skylark convertible)
where the owner's kid had made him a spankin' new
dashboard out of mahogany, for Father's Day. We're
talking 7th-grade Wood Shop skill level, thanks, son,
love it. Moral of the story being, not all wood, is