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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    5

    Default Pimp my instrument console!

    Firstly, hello all! I'm a regular reader finally making the leap to active participation, I hope I can contribute as well as learn from you all.

    I've just started the process of upgrading all the instruments on my mid-eighties Albin Nova.
    There's an instrument console above the companionway that previously housed elderly log, depth and wind instruments. I plan to replace these with a B&G Vulcan chartplotter and single Triton display for wind/log/depth. That leaves me with some holes to fill in, some to enlarge or reposition.

    What's the best way to fill in the gaps? I'm thinking of glueing some thin ply on the inside to cover the back of the old holes, before filling them from the front with fibreglass/epoxy and sanding flush. Then I'll paint to match the rest of the console (hopefully!).
    However, the last time I did any sort of fibreglass work was fixing a dent on a car some 30 years ago, so I'd appreciate any helpful ideas on how best to do this.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Essex
    Posts
    16,871

    Default Re: Pimp my instrument console!

    I don't have the skills to do smart GRP work, so I would make a panel of hardwood to mount the instruments in and leave it varnished.
    Far away is near at hand in images of elsewhere

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Central Solent
    Posts
    65

    Default Re: Pimp my instrument console!

    Rather than rebuild the console I covered all the old holes with black 10mm thick acrylic and then mounted the new kit to that - it looks very swish. Did this about 7 years ago and still looks good.

    You could do the same with some rain forrest if you like but Acrylic is probably cheaper, looks good and low maintenance.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    UK East Coast
    Posts
    30,579

    Default Re: Pimp my instrument console!

    Welcome to the forums!

    Your easiest solution would be to fix a new front panel on the console, using a piece of white perspex, white uPVC, etc.

    Is the console high enough to mount a Vulcan on?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Pimp my instrument console!

    Quote Originally Posted by pvb View Post
    Welcome to the forums!
    ...
    Is the console high enough to mount a Vulcan on?
    Thanks for the welcome :-)
    You lead me neatly into the next challenge I've encountered: the console itself is tall enough for my 7" Vulcan, I measured that before I bought it. However, the front of the console overlaps, and screws onto a raised lip at the aft end of the hatch garage, so I think I'm going to have to cut a recess into this to accomodate the rear of the Vulcan.
    The alternative would be to try to construct some sort of raised piece in the centre of the console, but I don't think my skills are up to that - so cutting a recess where it's hidden seems to be the better option.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    UK East Coast
    Posts
    30,579

    Default Re: Pimp my instrument console!

    Quote Originally Posted by Red Panda View Post
    Thanks for the welcome :-)
    You lead me neatly into the next challenge I've encountered: the console itself is tall enough for my 7" Vulcan, I measured that before I bought it. However, the front of the console overlaps, and screws onto a raised lip at the aft end of the hatch garage, so I think I'm going to have to cut a recess into this to accomodate the rear of the Vulcan.
    The alternative would be to try to construct some sort of raised piece in the centre of the console, but I don't think my skills are up to that - so cutting a recess where it's hidden seems to be the better option.
    Sounds sensible.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Pimp my instrument console!

    Those of you who've made new front panels from perspex or whatever - how have you attached these to the existing console? Have you tried to seal the joint in any way?

    Thanks again.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Muchalls
    Posts
    1,105

    Default Re: Pimp my instrument console!

    Hello Red Panda and welcome to the forums. You'll find a treasure chest of advice and help here.
    I'm in a similar situation with my elderly Westerly Longbow. The voltmeter, ammeter and engine hours meter all didn't work. I've taken them out, tidied up the electric cables and am now looking to tidy things up.
    To me, it seems a patch up job always is a patch up job. I could cut out a small section of ply and replace it with another but it will always look like, well, a patch up. Instead, over the winter, I plan to take out the whole panel, refit the VHS and other bits I want to keep and fit a complete new instrument panel. Plywood is not expensive, shaping a larger piece is no more work than shaping a little one and there are far, far, fewer joins to make.
    Take the panel out and start again, that's what I say. Then varnish or paint, your choice.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Essex
    Posts
    16,871

    Default Re: Pimp my instrument console!

    Quote Originally Posted by Red Panda View Post
    Those of you who've made new front panels from perspex or whatever - how have you attached these to the existing console? Have you tried to seal the joint in any way?

    Thanks again.
    You will want it to be readily removable, so I would make a gasket of the kind of foam that is made for the purpose, which is what I had on my previous boat in a similar position, exposed to the elements.
    Far away is near at hand in images of elsewhere

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Denmark
    Posts
    184

    Default Re: Pimp my instrument console!

    There are lots of inspirational video guides on YouTube.
    here is one of them part 1-4

    Ocqueteau 8.15,200hpNanni.
    Buster Sun R,25 hp outboard

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