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Replace damaged dash leather with Alcantara

 
  #31  
Old 05-05-2016, 10:54 AM
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Cattman I just wanted to say thank you for your great solution to the leather peeling off these 2 front panels. Just to clarify, there are about five different grades of Alcantra. After quite a bit of googling and research I determined that the unlined material is called Pannel Alcantara and is used on headliners and sometimes on dashboards. The lined material shown in your post is called Cover Alcantara, which on your recommendation, is what I am going use on my panels. It's normally used on seats but judging by your amazing results it's what we should use for this job.
 
  #32  
Old 05-05-2016, 10:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Cattman View Post
I used Alcantara with a very thin padded backing, and would recommend you do the same for a couple of reasons:

1. the damaged leather I removed had a fabric/ padding backed piece between the plastic and the leather. That made me feel that I should use a similar design.
2. the backing helps ensure that the adhesive doesn't bleed through.

Make sure it's a thin enough backing that you can still wrap it tightly around the panel. Too thick and you'll have a challenge.
CATTMAN
The webbing material on the back of the cover grade Alcantara is meant to give it additional strength when used on seating surfaces so it doesn't rip through from your body weight. It is not recommended for other surfaces because the webbing makes it more difficult and sometimes impossible to wrap around more complex contours without bunching.

It is common practice to use a thin layer of "sew foam" under the surface fabric when upholstering hard panels. This gives a smoother finish that won't telegraph any imperfections below to the surface and feels nicer to the touch.

If you apply the Alcantara over the existing leather, you won't need to use sew foam since there is usually a layer of it under the leather already. The advantage, when using Alcantara on top of leather that is still in good shape is that it allows you to change the interior's appearance without doing damage to the leather underneath. I have removed Alcantara years later and the leather underneath is still perfect. The spray adhesive can be easily removed by rolling it with your finger.

Also, if your adhesive is bleeding through the fabric, you are using way too much. You should only use a small misting on the flat surfaces. Any excess or small mistakes with the adhesive getting on the outer surface of the Alcantara can be cleaned up by dabbing it with a clean white terrycloth moistened with mineral spirits.
 
  #33  
Old 05-05-2016, 11:12 PM
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Originally Posted by karlfranz View Post
The webbing material on the back of the cover grade Alcantara is meant to give it additional strength when used on seating surfaces so it doesn't rip through from your body weight. It is not recommended for other surfaces because the webbing makes it more difficult and sometimes impossible to wrap around more complex contours without bunching.

It is common practice to use a thin layer of "sew foam" under the surface fabric when upholstering hard panels. This gives a smoother finish that won't telegraph any imperfections below to the surface and feels nicer to the touch.

If you apply the Alcantara over the existing leather, you won't need to use sew foam since there is usually a layer of it under the leather already. The advantage, when using Alcantara on top of leather that is still in good shape is that it allows you to change the interior's appearance without doing damage to the leather underneath. I have removed Alcantara years later and the leather underneath is still perfect. The spray adhesive can be easily removed by rolling it with your finger.

Also, if your adhesive is bleeding through the fabric, you are using way too much. You should only use a small misting on the flat surfaces. Any excess or small mistakes with the adhesive getting on the outer surface of the Alcantara can be cleaned up by dabbing it with a clean white terrycloth moistened with mineral spirits.

My DIY is about replacing damaged leather dash panels with color-matched Alcantara- not simply layering Alcantara on top of healthy AM leather panels for the sake of switching things up. I did not experience any issues with the webbed/ padded backed genuine Alcantara that I used. In fact, the thickness of it better matched the padding-backed leather that I removed from the plastic under-panel, and was amazingly easy to work with.
CATTMAN
 

Last edited by Cattman; 05-05-2016 at 11:18 PM.
 
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