I think that is actually sad. It shows the lenghts people will go to for parts. It also says alot about the value of our cars. They are worth far more as parts than as a whole car. I've watched the items from this particular seller. And there have been enough sales in a pretty short period of time that they could buy a whole car. I know what I have money wise in my car. I also know what I could probably sell the whole thing for. Then after watching the part sales I know if I wanted to sell I need to part it out completely to make a profit. Are all older car markets like this?
Geez, I have a dash with no cracks, the cars been inside the last 25 years away from the sun. I was going to use it on the one I'm building but if I thought I'd get what they are getting for that one on ebay, I just might use a cracked one and a dash cover!
I was planning on building a carbon fiber or fiberglass mold out of my old cracked dash this spring. Anyone already have a fiberglass mold for the dashboard, heard of doing this? I've seen it done pretty regularly in the ricer-kid arenas.
Fiber glass would work great, but don't hit your head on it in a crash. Mouth full of.... I actaully tried it, but a lot of dudes were getting so pissed off that I was actually going to sell something that might be unsafe, if one got into an accident. Its a tiny car that was designed in the late 60's, I'm not so sure that we can do anything to change that. However, I have flown in, and continue to instruct in aircraft that have carbon fiber dash/ instrument panels, and I'm not worried....but then again, I have an ejection seat! anyway, sorry it took so long to say it, but I think that you should do it! I'll buy one!
Good point T-6, about the crash protection fears, though I'm of the opinion that if you are impacting the dash board in the event of a crash, you're already having a very bad day! In my application, I don't expect to be traveling very far out of the seat even in the even of a crash since I'm sitting in a fitted aluminum racing seat and held in place by a 5-point harness attached to a 6-point roll cage.
Nevertheless, even if I weren't wearing a harness, or even a seatbelt, I think I would be more concerned about the steering column coming through my chest, or going through the windshield than the impact with fiberglass or carbon fiber.
So in short, I would say to those concerned with the crash safety of a fiber material dash, a logical first step might be to wear a seatbelt with at least a shoulder strap so you can't hit the dashboard, or the steering wheel, windshield, or anything else not intend to be passed through by the human body. And that goes for the stock dash too!
I think that the fears about a fiberglass dash are exaggerated. A fiberglass dash would still have some flexibility if it's not made too thick. Also, it could be made with a thin shell of fiberglass and filled with an impact absorbing urethane foam. If an epoxy resin is used (probably a better material than polyester anyway) the fiberglass could be layed up over a foam core that was cast in a mold. It could also be vacuum bagged for a very smooth surface. Polyester resin tends to dissolve most plastic foam materials. You should also make new heater vents that pass through the top of the dash. These tend to get brittle in the sun.
You could also cover the foam dashes in a stitched vinyl dash cover for those who still think that there's a problem.