Rocky Mountain Club B5

Discussion Forums => Modifications => Topic started by: aowhaus on May 30, 2004, 07:47:52 PM

Title: OEM brushed interior trim
Post by: aowhaus on May 30, 2004, 07:47:52 PM
I bought the complete interior OEM Net Optic aluminum trim from a CB5 GB through the awesome folks at Liberty VW.

I followed instructions to strip the bronze and black printed net pattern off the pieces to expose the aluminum according to this helpful site:

Originally I masked off the black plastic parts with tape so that the acetone and sanding doesn't harm the plastic, as the acetone could melt the plastic.  After doing the first piece I found that masking the plastic parts is not neccessary as long as you do not disturb any acetone that gets onto these pieces as it evaporates very fast.  I used a #1 Medium grit steel wool to apply and brush the finish off, which did a good job in producing the brushed aluminum finish.
The key is to rub the steel wool in one direction only to produce a nice brushed finish.  You will need to use a clean piece of steel wool after stripping all of the finish as the old finish will cake and clog the the wool and leave a streaky residue on the alumimum.  I then cleaned off all the residue by wiping the pieces with a cloth dampened with acetone.

I later used a 3M plastic steel wool alternative pad to lightly sand the pieces so that all the pieces have a consistant bushed finish and also this 3M pad doesn't leave bit and pieces of steel threads and dust that could get in the way when you apply the clear coating.

I bought a can of clearcoat spray in a matte finish from the local Home Depot.  Automotive stores such as Pep Boys and Autozone doesn't sell a clearcoat in a matte finish, only gloss which I didn't think it's appropriate on a brushed finish.  Also the key is to get a water- or acrylic-based clear coat spray as oil based sprays will yellow over time.

Before applying the clearcoat spray I wiped all of the pieces gently with a sponge pad lightly moistened with 99% isopropyl alcohol to clean the surgafaces of any dust and fine steel wool particles.

After two coats and letting it dry completely, I again wiped all the pieces gently with the 99% alcolhol to even out the finish.  After and hour I applied the Klasse All-in-one cleaner and Sealant Glaze and a coat of Zymol carnuba wax to furthur protect and make the surfaces nice and smooth.

All in all, I'm really happy with the results and it looks so much nicer than any aftermarket stick on aluminum trim.  
I'm going to install it tomorrow, Andew's coming over to install his 25th Anniversary GTI aluminum trim on his GTI so it's going to be a mini aluminum trim GTG install day.

I'll post pics soon.
Title: OEM brushed interior trim
Post by: Scuba2001 on May 31, 2004, 04:37:29 PM
Sounds great, lets see some pictures.
Title: OEM brushed interior trim
Post by: aowhaus on June 08, 2004, 08:29:36 AM
still working on it.
after a partial install I had to pull it all off again because I noticed there were finger prints embedded into the finish (only in the sunlight).

I think the acrylic matte clearcoat didn't react well with the finger prints left behind.  I already stripped the pieces again, wearing rubber gloves and cleaning the pieces thoroughly after they were brushed.  I think I'll try to use a solvent based automotive clearcoat instead -- it's going to be on the glossy side but at least it will not show the contaminants that easy and will be a little better durability wise.

BTW, the door handles installed very easily, the radio/climate control surrounds took some time because I had to disconnect and remove all of the buttons and stereo/electronic components.  The ashtray will be a real bitch since you will need to dismantle most of the center console.