Author Topic: Restoring the wood bows  (Read 5457 times)

Pinder

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Restoring the wood bows
« on: March 08, 2022, 23:55:39 »
Does anyone have a recommendation on the wood veneer to use and glue to restore the wood trim on the dash? my speaker grill and console box are in good shape. Is the vaneer teak or something else?
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lreppond

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2022, 03:45:59 »
I just had mine refinished. Madera told me it is walnut.  And that makes sense since walnut is grown in Germany!   Conversely, teak would make no sense since it’s sourced from the tropics.  If the speaker grill isn’t going to be refinished, I’d use its current color and try to find a stain to match.  That can sometimes be challenging. 
« Last Edit: March 18, 2022, 01:49:37 by lreppond »
~Len

1971 280 SL
576G red/251 Beige
4 speed manual
Family owned since new (father —> son)

WRe

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2022, 07:13:06 »
Hi,
here you can see how to restore your wood: https://www.pagodentreff.de/diskussionsforum/pages/holzteileaufarbeiten/.
...WRe

Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2022, 21:21:48 »
Thanks for the helpful replies
1970 280 SL Light Ivory DB 670. 4 Speed manual shift no AC Limited Slip Diff.

mdsalemi

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #4 on: March 10, 2022, 11:37:22 »
I had my original wood refinished locally by a furniture restoration specialist during the initial restoration 20 years ago. It was fine, though not perfect. Never had any point deduction in a Concours, but there was minute veneer damage that bothered me.

When I had the windscreen replaced last year, I investigated Madera. I know that their work is nearly perfect in every way. However it was very costly.

Instead I bought a complete all new wood set from Authentic Classics. It was less than refinishing my old wood. Then I sold all the old which significantly defrayed my cost on the new. What I didn’t buy new was the piece in the hardtop for that was in excellent condition; for that I gave a sample of the new with it to the local refinisher who does Steinway piano restorations and he made them match.

Very pleased with my choices and all of it now looks perfect. The total net cost was significantly less than just new or Madera refinishing.
Michael Salemi
Davidson, North Carolina (Charlotte Area) USA
1969 280SL (USA-Spec)
Signal Red 568G w/Black Leather (Restored)
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dirkbalter

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2022, 16:06:57 »
I had my original wood refinished locally by a furniture restoration specialist during the initial restoration 20 years ago. It was fine, though not perfect. Never had any point deduction in a Concours, but there was minute veneer damage that bothered me.

When I had the windscreen replaced last year, I investigated Madera. I know that their work is nearly perfect in every way. However it was very costly.

Instead I bought a complete all new wood set from Authentic Classics. It was less than refinishing my old wood. Then I sold all the old which significantly defrayed my cost on the new. What I didn’t buy new was the piece in the hardtop for that was in excellent condition; for that I gave a sample of the new with it to the local refinisher who does Steinway piano restorations and he made them match.

Very pleased with my choices and all of it now looks perfect. The total net cost was significantly less than just new or Madera refinishing.


Michael,
I was going to do the same thing, buying new wood instead of refinishing the existing one. Some guys cautioned
me, saying that new wood may have fitting issues and may need rework. Did you or anybody have fitment problems with purchased wood parts?
Thanks
 
Dirk
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mdsalemi

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2022, 16:16:17 »

Michael,
Did you…have fitment problems with purchased wood parts?

No. All installed w/o issues and it’s beautiful.
Michael Salemi
Davidson, North Carolina (Charlotte Area) USA
1969 280SL (USA-Spec)
Signal Red 568G w/Black Leather (Restored)
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Rahul

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2022, 23:15:50 »
I was told that to replace/refinish the wood trim on top of the dash the windscreen would need to be removed. Is this correct?

Had put me off getting it done.
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Pawel66

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2022, 23:37:01 »
Not necessarily, I did it with windshield not touched. A bit of maneuvering to fit, but tolerable.
Pawel

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lreppond

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2022, 00:16:52 »
I was told that to replace/refinish the wood trim on top of the dash the windscreen would need to be removed. Is this correct?






No.  I had the glovebox and tachometer out and it installed relatively easily.  No need to remove the windshield. 
~Len

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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2022, 01:05:43 »
I have the windshield out already as I wanted to put a new rubber gasket in. and while I am at it I will wrap the dash with MB tex I just ordered. I also have on order the walnut veneer. I've sanded the old veneer off completely. Its looking pretty good. Just waiting on the materials to be delivered. while I had the dash all apart I also changed the light bulbs for the vents and took the glass out on some of the gauges to clean it up.  taking these small nuts off the wood is a little tricky but luckly ive dropped a little weight so could get my hands back there.
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kampala

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2022, 01:54:27 »
In order to install the wood after the windshield was in place, I used the two-nut method to remove the studs on the wood. This makes it easier to install over the leather binnacle.

Then reinstall the studs from below — added a temporary bolt to the stud to make it easier to reinstall.  Once in place, remove the temp bolt, and install the blue nut.

Just be gentle. 
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #12 on: March 12, 2022, 01:18:04 »
another great idea.  I finally recevied the walnut vaneer. and I am impressed with how it looks. Right now i have the bows in vice clamps to make them straight. ill level them set up for a while. 50+ years of being warped.
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #13 on: March 15, 2022, 01:44:11 »
first attempt at vaneer failed! took forever getting the contact cement off. not looking good. attempt 2 this weekend.
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mdsalemi

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #14 on: March 15, 2022, 10:49:23 »
Working with unforgiving contact cement is extremely challenging as you have discovered.

More importantly, the art of veneering is truly an art. It’s one of the reasons why experts such as Madera Concepts charge what they do.

I have done a lot of woodworking over the years and even fabricated furniture. I draw the line at veneer! The original veneer on the Pagoda wood pieces is so thin that I decided not to even attempt refinishing that wood myself.

So keep trying you’ll eventually get it.
Michael Salemi
Davidson, North Carolina (Charlotte Area) USA
1969 280SL (USA-Spec)
Signal Red 568G w/Black Leather (Restored)
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #15 on: March 15, 2022, 20:36:13 »
Second attempt worked great.  So two days to do one bow. but its the harder one on the drivers side. I think the other one does not have the complex curve for the Speedo and tack so should go better. i havent stained it yet but will move on to finish the second bow.
1970 280 SL Light Ivory DB 670. 4 Speed manual shift no AC Limited Slip Diff.

Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #16 on: March 16, 2022, 01:00:06 »
iiHere is a pic of one of the bows wrapped in walnut. It came out way better than I  thought it could.
1970 280 SL Light Ivory DB 670. 4 Speed manual shift no AC Limited Slip Diff.

Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #17 on: March 16, 2022, 13:34:25 »
here is a picture of them re- veneered in walnut and ready for stain and finish.

I got some good tips from prior members posts. the best tips are:

1. align the vaneer such that the grain runs along the lenght of the bows. (easier to bend over the fronts).
2. use water on finger and dampen areas to bend and form slowly. keep wetting small areas at a time.
3. clamp using a rubber hose and clamps and also some painters tape to let it setup.
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dirkbalter

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #18 on: March 16, 2022, 15:48:04 »
Very nice.
Can I send you mine?
Dirk
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #19 on: March 16, 2022, 23:33:03 »
I wish I had the time to Dirk. Im no professional and Id hate to mess yours up beyond recovery.  I have very little actual skills working with wood other than doing some woodwork in school when I was around 15 years old.
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kampala

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #20 on: March 17, 2022, 04:01:58 »
Pinder

Looks fantastic.  Same grain direction as original. Would expand more on where you bought the veneer, thickness, dimensions etc ?   Also I assume you did not use a vacuum bag or such? 

Nice work.   

My 280 wood came up great after a very fine sanding. However I am not certain the 250 wood will come up the same or I might have to re-veneer. 

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johnk

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #21 on: March 17, 2022, 11:33:49 »
Impressive!
John Krystowski
Avon Ohio
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #22 on: March 17, 2022, 15:52:42 »

this is the Veneer I used. I think its thicker than what was original. It is paper backed and flexible. And I did not use any vacuum apparatus. clamped using rubber hos and clamps the concave section.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B011QRAFMS?psc=1&ref=ppx_pop_dt_b_asin_title

weldwood contact cement used.
1970 280 SL Light Ivory DB 670. 4 Speed manual shift no AC Limited Slip Diff.

lreppond

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #23 on: March 17, 2022, 17:01:19 »
Excellent work and the graining is perfect! Looks very much like the original  Anxious to see it stained and with finish. 
~Len

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Family owned since new (father —> son)

Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #24 on: March 17, 2022, 17:46:41 »
That will be my next step. I think the veneer I used if it was thinner this would be a lot easier.  the one I got is 10 mil. i think 5 mil would work really well
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johnk

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #25 on: March 17, 2022, 21:37:30 »
So a little off subject but not completely, is the box on the transmission tunnel suppose to be walnut veneer or just gel stained to look like it?  I sanded mine and the grain finish is coming off completely. I realize now that the grain finish on it was all in the stain not the wood underneath.
John Krystowski
Avon Ohio
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #26 on: March 17, 2022, 23:32:44 »
im not sure what color stain to use. I have Minwax Ebony that looks similar to what is on the hidden part of the ash tray area. i guess it looks like what is described as wenge.  But if i look at the color of the hard top wood which is original to the car the wood is more on the redish brown side. My interior is dark brown MB tex and i think the ebony will look nice with it. ill try it on the scraps of walnut i have left then pic the one i like.
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lreppond

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #27 on: March 18, 2022, 01:47:52 »
DB described it as “dark walnut” which would be a dark brown with very slight reddish under tones.  What I received from Madera is just that and matches the hardtop trim which is original and in fine condition. 

This wood trim, in my opinion, was never intended to stand out as was the case of the w111 or w100 of the same period.  It wasn’t finished to the high gloss level either.  So I’d look at the speaker grill and hardtop and use them as a guide in selecting the stain. 

Ebony is to me, a deep charcoal color.  Think a grand piano!  Wenge has definite purplish under tones.  Neither seem appropriate to me but it’s not my car.  You’ve done excellent work so far and I’m confident you’ll make the right call on this as well. 

Please share pix of your results.
~Len

1971 280 SL
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4 speed manual
Family owned since new (father —> son)

johnk

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #28 on: March 19, 2022, 05:17:44 »
Thanks gents but my question is what wood is it veneered in? Mine does not appear to be veneered in walnut and I would need to use a gel stain to imitate the walnut grain in a similar color.
John Krystowski
Avon Ohio
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lreppond

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #29 on: March 19, 2022, 17:44:45 »
I’m reasonably certain that all wood trim in the w113s were done in veneered walnut including the center console. The exception is the bottom of the console which appears to be pine or fir.  I have several old console trays and you can actually see the veneer delaminating from the base wood materials.

I’m not certain any stain, gel or otherwise, can make the substrate wood look like walnut since the graining is so different.  I guess it’s worth a try but after all you’ve gone through with your car, I’d go with reveneering it. 
~Len

1971 280 SL
576G red/251 Beige
4 speed manual
Family owned since new (father —> son)

Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #30 on: March 19, 2022, 19:30:51 »
When I sanded the console box it is definitely walnut vaneer. It looks like the top edges of the box are small strips of vaneer and I can see the tiny joins. I am going to attempt  to vaneer just the top edges and possibly sides.
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #31 on: March 22, 2022, 00:43:42 »
I went and bought some wood stain in dark walnut and a can of poly satin finish.  that will be my project for next weekend. will post results of all the wood stained. then poly coated.

In the mean time I managed to recover the dash with MB tex to take care of 2 small cracks.
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mdsalemi

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #32 on: March 22, 2022, 13:41:33 »
I went and bought some wood stain in dark walnut and a can of poly satin finish...

I hope you use an exterior grade poly satin finish; an interior grade will not stand up to the UV, and will probably yellow and deteriorate quickly. Minwax Helmsman Spar Urethane comes to mind as one commonly available in most home centers. Probably even a greater selection at a marine store...
Michael Salemi
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Signal Red 568G w/Black Leather (Restored)
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cfm65@me.com

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #33 on: March 22, 2022, 16:44:34 »
Well done, Pinder
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #34 on: March 23, 2022, 00:26:29 »
ill be going back to get the minwax exterior grade. I was thinking that when i was there then went for interior. Luckly I have been procrastinating.
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #35 on: April 03, 2022, 00:19:05 »
So I have finished the refurbishment of the dash bows, speaker grill and center console. See picks for final result.

I used dark walnut for the stain and semi gloss poly for the finish. 4 coats then wet sand 400 grit, 0000 steel wool then carwax (caranuba)
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #36 on: April 03, 2022, 00:21:54 »
While I had the bows out I also re covered the dash which  had two small cracks in it with MB Text vinyl. It came out really nice. I did remove the cloth from the back so it could be stretched around curves. It came out really well. Matches my seats.
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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #37 on: April 03, 2022, 19:18:47 »
Nice work! Stain color looks spot on to me. 
~Len

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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #38 on: April 03, 2022, 23:25:55 »
Im really happy with the color and thanks for the advice on the stain to use.  Finishing with the 0000 steel wool really made the finish look professional and smooth.
1970 280 SL Light Ivory DB 670. 4 Speed manual shift no AC Limited Slip Diff.

Leester

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #39 on: April 04, 2022, 00:55:21 »
Looks great - nice work. May I ask where you purchased the vinyl from.  Thanks. Lee
Lee Backus
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1978 450SL (disassembled for paint)
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #40 on: April 04, 2022, 01:38:18 »
Lee,
 
 MB tex is from GAAH.

https://gahh.com

Very reasonable price. I ordered 2 yards.  approx. 100 bucks plus delivery.  its wide enough for dash and also soft top cover.    If you do the dash remove the cloth backing using acetone or lacquer thinner. Apply to backing with kitchen towel napkins to soak the back  then rip it off slowly. A member (Shevegel) on this site recommended that and it worked really well.  I used the Weldwood Landau contact cement meant for vinyl tops. It comes in a gallon. my seat covers are from GAT. same material looks identical. very durable stuff.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2022, 02:07:24 by Pinder »
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #41 on: April 04, 2022, 01:43:03 »
Lee if you do the dash make sure you sand down any cracks so they dont mirror through. I did order a dash repair bondo stuff but did not use it as the cracks were so small.
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Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #42 on: April 04, 2022, 02:01:08 »
The best part of fixing what you have no matter how bad it looks is its still original.
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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #43 on: April 04, 2022, 16:10:17 »
Thank for info and tips. Agree with keeping as much as possible original parts. I did my bows a while back - came out decent but not as nicely as yours since. I have a couple of minor spots where the veneer had come off. With the stain on, its not very noticeable. Most people probably won't see it but I know its there. But I will re-install when I get there to keep the original parts.
The reason I asked about the vinyl is that my seats were Cognac MB Tex and I havent found a source for the deep grain. I thought I had samples from GAAH but will double check. Thanks again
Lee Backus
1963 220SE Cabriolet
1970 280SL (reassembling - hopefully soon)
1978 450SL (disassembled for paint)
1985 500SEC

Pawel66

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #44 on: April 04, 2022, 16:35:45 »
I have recently bought some material for my car's upholstery to have "just in case". I bought some leather (dark blue) and MB tex dark blue. I cannot tell the difference when I look at them. I bought it from Heinz Reinke. Have you looked there?
Pawel

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Leester

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #45 on: April 04, 2022, 20:15:30 »
Thanks Pawel, have not checked there but will. Most of the leather I have found is very smooth and I'm looking for something with some "grain" to it. Looking at Pinder's MB Tex, it has a quite a texture or grain to it which appeals to me.  Lee
Lee Backus
1963 220SE Cabriolet
1970 280SL (reassembling - hopefully soon)
1978 450SL (disassembled for paint)
1985 500SEC

Pawel66

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #46 on: April 04, 2022, 21:21:20 »
Thanks Pawel, have not checked there but will. Most of the leather I have found is very smooth and I'm looking for something with some "grain" to it. Looking at Pinder's MB Tex, it has a quite a texture or grain to it which appeals to me.  Lee

Let me check over the weekend if I have samples at hand of both materials - if so, I will try to take a picture that reflects the texture. I have no idea if they have distributor in the US.
Pawel

280SL 1970 automatic 180G Silver
W128 220SE
W121 190SL
G-class

Pinder

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Re: Restoring the wood bows
« Reply #47 on: April 04, 2022, 23:16:21 »
Yes there is considerable texture and it feels very durable. it matches my seats which I got from GAT. They must be using the same source for the material.   GAAH has two types of MB text. One is perforated and the other one is like what I used on the dash. I think the perforated one is for the middle of the seats.
1970 280 SL Light Ivory DB 670. 4 Speed manual shift no AC Limited Slip Diff.