ensys

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    Subject: early '77 280Z.

    Today's Query is a multi-parter...

    - Any opinions about whether the console and it's armrest/lid shell are of a Styrene plastic?

    - Has anyone ever felt the need, by necessity ("stripped" screws no longer holding the bottom finisher (a not-Styrene) to the top (Styrene) shell) or OCD urge, to disassemble the console armrest/lid?

    - Were you crestfallen to discover that most (especially those for the lid hinges) of the top shell's (Styrene) cast-in screw socket posts, were broken/shattered hulks of their former configuration?

    - Has anyone attempted repair/replacement? That worked?

    - If so, would anyone in this narrow class of dedicated self-abusers, care to share the secrets of their success?  Please be specific regarding technique and adhesives.

    I thank you for your attention.


    PS:
    An Observation/Rumination:  There may well be an object lesson here, about why attending to cars older than the '70s, is more often a more rewarding experience, non-Pro fiddle-wise, than those of more difficult materials and technologies that followed.

    Bonus Bore:
    Are future Cars-of-Our-Youth geeks doomed to embracing what few Overpriced, Not-Front-Drivers, Not-Station-Wagons, that remain? Will there be a surge of appreciation for the very many fine Pre-(personal)Historic crocks that will have become Estate fodder? Will a Journeyman coder be able to afford anything worth driving/saving?

    Wondering/Wandering minds want to know....

     

     

     

     

     

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    Lid on the console?  My early 77/280z does not have that,  maybe you have an aftermarket arm rest? I believe the console and interior panels are made of ABS.  ABS glue and JB Weld work well on them, if the crack is long then a bandage of fiberglass cloth embedded into the JB Weld gives it some strength.

     

    IMG_0281.JPG

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    My console has a lid. It is in good shape but I haven’t looked at it much since I took the car part years ago. It is a stock lid with hinges molded into top and bottom so, not aftermarket I’m thinking.

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    18 hours ago, ensys said:

    Subject: early '77 280Z.

    - Has anyone ever felt the need, by necessity ("stripped" screws no longer holding the bottom finisher (a not-Styrene) to the top (Styrene) shell) or OCD urge, to disassemble the console armrest/lid?

    Wondering/Wandering minds want to know....

    @Captain Obvious - you aren't OCD, are yoU?

    To add to the conversation - I recall my original lid was a hard plastic - like ABS as Chris describes. My current one is a padded type with about 2" of foam covered with a vinyl type material. I'm too lazy to take apart a functioning part. I mean, who would jump out of a perfectly good airplane? Insanity!!!

    • Haha 1

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    My 1/77' car came to me with an armrest/lid.  Judging by how bad in shape it was, I want to say it was original but I have no way of confirming since I trashed it when I rebuilt the interior.  I  recall that I did dis-assemble it, or rather, I took the pieces broken pieces apart and made the decision just to replace the whole thing.  Like most of the interior parts, the arm rest is not overly complicated. Just a couple of screws on a long wire hinge make it function with the console itself.  The release lever is one piece that pivots and a spring that makes it return to the latch position. I don't know about repairing the screw holes as I did not attempt it, but it seems possible. I do have a spare armrest from a parts car if you need pics. This pic from the PO is from when I picked my car up.

    0320141608.jpg

    0320141423.jpg

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    The lid is original to the car and is shown in the parts manual, albeit rather casually. The lid is listed as one piece, as is the torsion rod hinge assembly and the latch (which is actually 3 pieces). To the best of my knowledge, there is no repro available; only highly modified replacements.

    While it was the broken screw posts that prompted the investigation, it's OCD that prompts an attempted "repair" of this original part.

    I did cruise evilbay for a while before buying a replacement lid that the seller pinkie-swore was in "very good" condition. Of course, it was not; in fact, it was worse than the original piece, not to mention the missing bits..

    Well, we all agree that the Z's hard plastic parts are a styrene (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene). While ABS to ABS adhesives are available (tho repairing (with strength) the two breaks in the console body is proving tricky), bonding to non-ABS repair parts is an issue that I have not licked yet. I reckon I need to find different materials....

    I'm open to more adhesive suggestions.

    I thank you for your attention.

     

     

     

     

    Edited by ensys

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    For plastics like ABS and Styrene there are a variety of options. The way to tell if its something that will glue easily is to take acetone on a qtip and wipe it somewhere on the part that isn't noticeable. if the plastic melts then you have something like ABS or Styrene. If this is the case than any of the solvent based adhesives will work well. I've had a lot of luck with this stuff for gluing Polycarbonate, ABS, and styrene to themselves and to each other:

     

    https://www.amazon.com/SCIGRIP-10315-Acrylic-Cement-Low-VOC/dp/B003HNFLMY/ref=asc_df_B003HNFLMY/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=257328193196&hvpos=1o3&hvnetw=g&hvrand=17422983547376199163&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9033288&hvtargid=pla-488800547037&psc=1

     

    If you are fixing a crack I recommend placing a piece of plastic behind the crack bridging the two sides to give extra strength. Also be aware that if any solvent based adhesives leak out on the visible side of the crack you will likely cause a blemish due to plastic "melting" from contact.

    As stated above fiberglassing the area should work as well. There are also machines you can buy for "welding" the plastic back together. essentially a cross between a soldering iron and tig welding.

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    The repair of the first break by the ash tray actually went well (from some years ago), owing to the piece of compatible plastic I used for the bridging backing.

    The second, not so much so, as I couldn't come up with another good backing piece (a hunk of a poly-something battery case, as I recall) in my garage . The piece left a very clear impression in all the cyclo-crazy glue and epoxy that I used. The disappointment (an befuddlement) stems from the fact that all that adhesive did not hold the break together.

    I'm thinking to try roughing the piece up, maybe drill a few small holes, if I can't come up with another piece of styrene, since it seems unlikely that I will find a glue that holds both.

    I can see the merit of the fiberglas mat, but I would like something with some more body; that run past the ash tray hole is the weakest spot on the console body and needs all the strength it can get.

    But the Oatley adhesive looks promising.

    I'm still working out a strategy for the lid's shattered screw posts. Maybe I can find some ABS rod somewhere....

     

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    11 hours ago, ensys said:

    I'm still working out a strategy for the lid's shattered screw posts. Maybe I can find some ABS rod somewhere....

     

    Try ball point pen (Bic or other throw away "stick" pens) bodies with the refill removed - nice tube and can be cut to length as needed.

    Dennis

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    "If so, would anyone in this narrow class of dedicated self-abusers, care to share the secrets of their success?"

    Oh! Hi there!

    Yup, I've done exactly this a few years back. Fiberglass mat and ABS cement will do what you need. I glopped on the cement (it's just ABS plastic melted in MEK) on the screw studs that were blown out and glued back the ones that were broken.

    Bottom pictures are of my steering column clamshell that had all the screw pockets broken off. Turns out we had some corporate pens at the office that were perfectly sized to be glued in place. Same approach would work on the arm rest lid.

    IMG_4314.jpgIMG_4312.jpgIMG_4636.jpgIMG_4641.jpg

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    Cowabunga! The BIC pen gambit is a fine bit of inspiration. Sometimes the obvious solutions are the hardest to ken. Thanks Dennis.

    Ah, Mr.Kwin; nice to hear from a kindred spirit. As most of my posts were blown out in a zillion small pieces, I will have to make the most of the pen idea. The only issue might be plastic type, but I've just re-done the pesky console break using an Oatley multi-blend billed as good for ABS, PVC, etc., so we will see. So, its off to Office Depot for a few BIC sticks. Still cheaper than the rods I bought, and no careful drilling req'd. Now, if I can find the right diameter of thin wall tubing to sheath the posts (to prevent cracking when threading the first time), I'll have every base covered.

    On a related point, I set out to straighten the tall side of the console that had developed a very wavy edge that I figure induced additional stress on the short side where the breaks developed. It took some fair heat (handle with care), but I got it straightened out before re-gluing the opposite side.

    Incidentally, don't underestimate the ashtray frame's part in maintaining the console's geometry around the hole..

    Thanks one and all for getting into this and for  the excellent suggestions.

     

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