Thursday, May 3, 2018

Fixing the Interior, Part 2 (A Pillar Covers)

So after I cleaned up the shift surround and dashboard panel, I decided to see if I could fix the glovebox as well as the A-pillars.

The glovebox was easy. Once Cesar heard about what had happened, he immediately contacted me and offered to fix it... for FREE! What a TRUE GENTLEMAN. I will have a separate post on these repairs coming up in a follow up post.

This post is about how I tackled the A-pillars.  To review, despite my telling Nakamura-san at WORX Auto Alarm that I did NOT like the whitish/light grey A pillars - because the OEM plastic ones are BLACK and so I knew that anything other than that would clash - he went ahead and ordered A pillar covers in the light grey Alcantara. I get the feeling he had little say in the matter, OR, that I was sold a recycled part.  It doesn't matter at this point anymore...

Here is how the interior looked BEFORE I embarked on the fix.

Actually, here is an even better photo, showing the clash of the white A pillar cover with the black of the B pillar as well as the now leather covered passenger grip handle.

I'm sorry, but that LOOKS LIKE SHIT. Did I mention how much I hate what Nakamura did?
This fix was relatively easy, because I stumbled upon an interesting spray paint that is designed to work on fabrics such as denim and suede, called Somay-Q.  ("Somay" in Japanese means "to dye"). According to the video below, application is easy and straight forward. So of course I had to try it.

First, I removed the A pillar covers being careful not to scratch the Alcantara and damage the speaker wiring while disconnecting.  Note how the light grey is already showing dirt.  Real genius, that guy Nakamura, using such a light color in a place where there is bound to be lots of touching (due to the hand grip there)

Then, following the instructions exactly, I cleaned the A pillar covers and then sprayed them with "Grey Black" Somay-Q spray.  I figured I didn't want the normal "black" which might be too dark. Plus, the black Alcantara cloth I have stocked in order to finish the rest of the interior didn't look solid black.

So I prepped the pillar covers by covering up the speaker grills in masking tape.

I then cleaned the surface and prepared the Somay-Q spray.

Then started spraying.
I think this is when I began to suspect the paint wasn't dark enough...
And even when I finished spraying, I knew something was wrong. The color just didn't seem dark enough.  Here is the Grey Black.

And sure enough, when I compared agains the Alcantara cloth used in the glove box and center console:
Camera flash making both look lighter..
Obviously the pillar needs to be much darker.  So, I ran back to the hardware store but the regular Black colored Somay-Q was sold out.  That, and rainy weather over the following weekend, meant I had to wait two weeks to finish the job.  But eventually there was a sunny day and I finished with the full black spray.
Came out pretty good, don't you think?
Of course, it doesn't feel like the super soft Alcantara as it was originally - to be honest it feels like painted cloth.  But from a distance it looks fine and gives me a preview of what the interior will look like when the B and C pillars are upgraded and covered in proper black Alcantara, this time by a real professional.

For that project, I am currently searching for interior shops in Japan...but meanwhile I still have to fix a few other things... Once I do so then I will put up a photo of the fixed up interior so you can see the difference just a bit of care makes...


Anonymous said...

great diy effort. but sir, the rest of your car is in such an extremely high standard, i feel this pillar not being made from the same alcantera/colour lets the car down.

perhaps when you get your bonus you can splash out and get the pillars made in the exact same material and colour so the car is complete

your car is superb

Unknown said...

Can you not take the guy to a small claims court.... there must be something in Japan that protects customers from shoddy work like this and I’m sure the work done was quite expensive.

Anonymous said...

Slow and steady there Aki. If only I'm in Japan right now, I would've helped you, seriously. GT-R nerds to the rescue.

Oh and I forgot, need to get this off... F Nakamura of Worx Alarm.

Anonymous said...

Where did you acquire the “ashtray delete” & a/c control holder/relocator to fit the double sin in?

Aki said...

Ashtray delete - I got it from Worx auto alarm, but I would stay away from that charlatan at all costs. There are better ones out there.