Interior swap help needed (long)

Scalmanini Steve sscalmanini at
Fri May 17 21:32:17 EDT 2002

1. Can the top of the dashboard be pulled, leaving the
wood strip below in place?  How do I go about doing

No, the wood strips (one on each side of the steering
column) must be removed first, as must the dashboard
end panels,  driver-side knee-panel, glovebox, and
dashboard speaker grills.

(Note all the room in the cavity in the dash casting
behind the larger of the wood strips.  ' may be enough
for a single CD player or certainly some auxiliary
electrical switches.)

2. Are there any tricks to pulling out the glovebox
and driver side lower panel?

Yes/no.  First remove the dashboard side panels (by
sliding them up then pulling out, if I recall
correctly).  There IS a trick to glovebox removal (and
it's NOT in the Bentley, I think): loosen the 4 screws
(w/ 4mm(?) allen wrench) a few turns each, then slide
the box back (toward the seat) (or was it sideways?
Peek around the bolt heads with a flashlight to see) ~
1/4 inch or so, and it'll drop off the screw heads
(it'll be harder to get it back on the washers under
the screw heads during reassembly).  No trick to
removing the driver-side knee panel after the end
panel (and lower steering column cover?) is removed.

3. What is the easiest way to pull the center console

I don't know; ' sorry.

4. Does the carpet pull out easily once the seats and
center console are pulled?

' don't know.

5. Finally, are there any tips for pulling the rear
parcel shelf?

Yes.  See my writeup a few years ago on installing a
rear window shade from a V8.  I can't find my copy but
someone on the list has one and reposted it ~ a year
ago in response to someone's inquiry at that time.

Any helpful advice would be greatly appreciated.

One difficult step will be removing one of the screws
for the dashboard cover.  3 or more screws are behind
the wood trim panels (2? under the center/right panel,
1? under the left panel).

One screw is under each speaker grill (remove by
carefully prying up the rear edge [nearer the seat,
not the windshield] toward the left and right sides of
the rear edge [i.e. not in the center; there are two
tabs under the grill's rear edge that snap into the
dashboard cover, one toward each side; pry them up and
then pull the grill toward you).  (I used a ~6" mini
pry bar with mailing tape over the end to prevent
scratching the dash cover.)  (Now is the easiest time
to remove the instrument cluster as the dash cover
over it can be lifted a little to easily allow removal
of the cluster without scratching anything.)

And lastly, the BIIIIIITTTTTTCH is removing the last
screw, who's head in inside one of the center slots in
the windshield defrost grill in the dashboard cover
(also not mentioned in the Bentley?).  The hex hole in
the screw might be covered by a V-shaped kink in a
plastic rod that fits between the body of the defrost
grill and the inside edge of the hole in the dash
cover.  (I think it's there to keep the dash-cover
material from unraveling around the edge of the
defrost grill hole.)  Anyway, it's verrry difficult to
push the rod out of the way and get an allen wrench
into the screw head, let alone unscrew the head past
the rod, which requires the head to push the rod even
farther aside (without lifting the center of the grill
enough to break it!) (Hey, wait a minute, it just
occurred to me that maybe the head can stay in place
between the rod and the bottom of the grill while
being unscrewed; see what works for you and let me
know.)  It's difficult to even SEE the screw head!  I
worked at night with a flashlight and a mirror against
the inside of the windshield.

If you have to, don't be afraid to cut or break a
small section from that plastic rod, with
narrow-headed wire cutters or long nose pliers.  I
don't think you'll ever miss it functionally and it's
less expensive than an entire defrost grill.

I failed at all this (' hate to admit it) and
eventually broke the grill before I was even sure I
had to remove that screw.  I was able to get a
replacement in platinum grey from a recycler for $20
(they're not available from dealers any longer in any
color but black).  If anyone knows a "trick" to
removing that screw, please speak up.

Remove the dash cover by sliding it ~ 1/2-1" toward
the rear (i.e. seat) and lifting up (there's a finger
it must slide clear of near the air-temp-sensor
grill); you can see it with a flashlight from the
cavity where the instrument cluster was.

Once the dash cover is removed, you can access the
air-temp-sensor motor (if it squeaks), the alarm
controller (on the front side of the dashboard
casting) and one other item adjacent to the alarm

If you run into anything I may have overlooked from a
few months ago, let me know.  ' sorry for the length,
but that's what it takes.

Good luck,

Steve Scalmanini
Ukiah, CA

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