Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Steering My Patience

 I had an option to either fork over $350 for a fully restored steering wheel.  I actually had one that is in pretty good shape.  The problem areas are around the ribs.  There were a heck-uv-a lot of cracks too.  This is a shot of the wheel before I disassembled the car.  This is what it looked like in the condition I found it.  Not too shabby!  So I read up to see what the best way to bring this back to life and if it's actually something that is doable.  I went ahead and bought some POR-15 Epoxy that seems to work really well.

The POR-15 is water based and it easily smoothed out.  It's almost like paste so it's easily malleable.  What it requires is an ENORMOUS amount of patience.  You can only really do a small area at a time.  I'd mix the two part expoxy, get my fingers real wet, and press the stuff into the cracks and smooth out as much as possible.  Once it dries I would use three types of sandpaper.  80 grit, 120 grit, and 300 grit.  Using this I was able to get this very smooth and bring a consistent shape and look to it.  You can see the middle that has been quasi-finished.  I figured I can work on this over the next 4-8 weeks as I have time.  I can set the putty and let it sit over night.  Then the next time I can sand it down and start over.  Hopefully, it will come around looking presentable.  I figure I'll take my time on this one because it's the one thing that you'll be touching the most and looking at the most every time you drive.  Might as well make it look good.  If I screw up.....I'll break the bank for $350 and say screw it!

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