New Dashboard

I had a new walnut dashboard fitted to my TVR in 2012 it was supplied by Classical dash and I was very pleased with the finish. Unfortunately as my Griff lives outside every summer the glue would fail on the rear of the dashboard buttons and they would end up floating around inside the dashboard. Various glues where tested including Araldite and 2 ton epoxy adhesive, none would secure the buttons for more than 12 months.

New 2015 dashboard
001 Pete Dash

Recently I also noticed that the veneer had cracked, this is again probably mainly due to the extreme temperatures the dash is exposed to during winter and summer. Having to remove the dashboard  so many times to re-fix the buttons I asm sure also did not help.

Issues with existing dashboard
2012-03-09 Headlight Switches

A good friend of mine and fellow Griff owner Peter Wiggins mentioned he was developing a new dashboard for his car to address the issues with the original TVR design. Despite the issues with the design of the original TVR dashboards being well documented, none of the existing suppliers of these dashboards have chosen address these issues in the products they sell.

Peter’s design to eliminates the manner in which the gauges and switches were fitted from new, they were simply glued to the rear of the panel dash panel. The design also addresses the poor choice of a veneered piece of thin 1.5mm steel sheet, which flexed and twisted in use causing the veneer to crack regularly.

Peter’s design is a laminated dash concept; meaning that it has an aluminium backing of 1.5mm that holds all the gauges via bezel mount and has ‘press studs’ to provide fixing capability, then a front bonded layer of 4mm ply veneered with bur walnut. This design produces a nice relatively flex free surface and allows all the switches and gauges to be properly mounted rather than using mastic or an araldited little bracket.

Peter started with a digital CAD file of the dash outline, kindly supplied by Dave Horthersall (TVRCC deputy editor) and then produced a paper 1:1, then modified the file to follow as accurately his original profile. Peter then produced two layers; 1 the aluminium with gauge holes the size of the case and 2 the wood with gauge holes a clearance fit for the bezel. Peter also designed switch and indicator lamp mounting brackets to all fit onto the aluminium layer. Finally Peter had both the wood and aluminium water jet cut from the CAD files, then the veneered wood layer was bonded to the aluminium. Lastly the veneer was coated with 7 coats of lacquer to give a deep shine.

The following are photographs showing the stages and finished items (kindly provided by Peter Wiggins):

Water Jet Cutting 1
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The Cut Pieces
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Assembly of finished dash
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Prototype fitted to Peter’s 4.3 Griff
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Machined Swirled Aluminium
Pete Stainless Dash 1

Pete also offers a machined swirled aluminium option and brushed stainless steel for those who prefer the more modern look. My car came with one of these from the factory and it did look very good.

TVR MADS Advertisement

I took delivery of my dashboard February 2015, Peter very kindly let me have one of the first 500 dashboards he produced. The finish looked fantastic I could tell that a lot of time had not only gone into the design but also the finishing of the product.

New dashboard
001 Pete Dash002 Pete Dash

While my car was in for a service this year I took the opportunity to ask David Batty (TVR Specialist) to swap the dashboard over for the new ‘Pete Dash’. I also had the stereo headunit swapped for an updated unit as the old one had failed. Trying to find a head unit which did not look like a disco ball was quite difficult, I ended up settling for a Pioneer DEH-80PRS which is a good quality unit being part of the Pioneer reference series and also has full iPhone/iPod connectivity including charging which is useful when using the phone as a sat nav.

David did a great job of fitting the dashboard and the item itself is absolute quality, I am really pleased with it.

If you fancy one of Peter’s fantastic new dashboards can be contacted via email at peter.wiggins@talktalk.net

New dash fitted to my Griff
002 Pete Dash
003 Pete Dash

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3 comments

  1. Hi Matthew
    I have just ordered a dash from Pete Wiggins in your photo of your dash I see you have very nice plain aluminium dash buttons not the type from Leven can you help as to where you bought them I am going to Griff Growl this year so hope to see you there.
    Many thanks
    Michael Wheeler

    1. Hello Michael,

      Good to hear you have ordered a Dash from Peter, I am still very pleased with mine.

      The buttons are Zertec items, company has long since gone unfortunately. It took me about 4 years to find that set. If you keep an eye out they do occasionally come up for sale.

      I am planning to be at the Griff Growl as well so hopefully see you there.

      All the best

      Matthew

      1. Hi Matthew
        Thank’s so much for info on dash buttons will keep eye out,also like to say what a great web site you have very informative thanks once again.

        All the best

        Michael

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