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Restoring a 1969-1980 center console

Article/photo's courtesy of
CK5
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I picked up a cup holder console local to me last week in pretty good shape. The cup holder version found in Blazers and Jimmys was produced from 1977-1980, the seat belt version was produced from 1969-1976. The seat belt version can also be converted to the cup holder version.

It is dirty and dusty, but almost perfect shape except for a hole in the center of the base, looks like it was bolted down and someone pulled it out causing a tear and some crowning when it was pulled out.

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Took it apart and got it ready to fix the damage on the bottom as well as verified that all the screw holes were not stripped out etc.

I used a product called Kitty hair for the fiberglass repair, it can be found online several places, I purchased mine from ebay.

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I used a dremel with a V shaped sanding attachment to clean up the hole and remove some of the crowned out area and also v-cut a few cracks on the back side. It's important to v-cut any cracks the console may have to give the kitty hair an area to adhere to.

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After I cleaned up the hole there was a little crowning around the hole so I used some scrap wood and clamps to keep it flat while I filled the hole with Kitty hair. I also used some wax paper underneath the hole on top of a piece of plywood.

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After an hour or so I just sanded it down with a small hand held sander.

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There was a few air pockets which is to be expected but I'm not going to worry about as it's at the bottom of the console.
But if you want it perfect all you would have to do is use a skim coat of bondo then sand, it will then totally disappear.

I filled in a few cracks on the bottom side and sanded that down as well.

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Dusted it with a little paint to see what it looked like...

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Next step is to add a little texture to the outside that was lost to a few layers of paint over the years from previous ownership and painting with SEM black paint.

1 can of truck bed coating from Harbor Freight.
2 cans SEM Landau black 15013 paint.

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Scuffed up the outside with my sander and then cleaned with Simply Green. I also used gloves to keep oils from my hands getting on the console. You will want to tape off the center of the lid as that has a different texture. Then sprayed the console with texture in the areas that I wanted and left in the sun to dry.

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While that was drying I polished up the badge, hinge and trim with 00 steel wool. Everything cleaned up really nice. If yours is badly rusted you might have to simply get the trim ring re-chromed.

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Next step was 3 coats of SEM paint with a few more coats on the lid as that area takes more abuse.
Grabbed new stainless steel hardware because why not and then reassembled.

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All said and done the console restore turned out great and pretty simple to do.
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