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Woodgrain Dashboard!

Posted by rt72mgb 
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rt72mgb Avatar
R.T. Hendry
Fort George 1812, Southern Ontario, Canada   can
1972 MG MGB ""Classy""
Hi..Considering adding a woodgrain look to the dashboard on my 72 B. Moss offers a Burlwood kit #453-831 for $211.85. My question is.. has anyone used this kit? and are there other options available or advice on DIY!

Mick from Scotland Avatar
Mick Rae
East Lothian, Scotland, UK   gbr
Hi Ron,
do you mean the burr walnut, burr elm dashes? If so, with everything, there are numerous versions. These range from real wood veneers, to the stuff that is found on Rovers from the last batches, that is, looks the part, but is the equivalent of laminate flooring. The real veneers are the more expensive option, usually laid on either a plywood or steel backing. These are fixed over the existing dash with screws - the holes are such that they fit over the instrument binnacles, and thickness is such that instrument binnacles protrude - careful fitting looks very nice (I'm biased, s'what I have!). The 'faux' veneers are usually self adhesive - these kits are a lot cheaper - you get the dash and console for less than a real veneer dash is - I have seen them in action, they look fine, but in my opinion not as 'real' or as 'period' as the real veneers. They are a lot thinner though, and so permit more instrument protrusion. Finally, there is the 'rolls royce' of mg woden dashes - a company in the uk does this, but you will have them in the states also, where you send them your dash, and they apply the veneer directly to it, then you refit your instruments. This is the best it can get - looks like it was always there as part of the design. Plus you have a wider choice of veneers.
I have also prepareed and repaired car wood veneers myself. To varying degrees of sucess I have to admit. Not too bad on a flat panel though. MY mthod, which has developed through trial, error and disaster, could be imporoved I have no doubt, and I post this fully expecting someone 'in the trade' to laugh, but anyway: wet the veneer sheet, then press between eg. eavy books overnight - gets any creases out. Get the whtever it is you are veneering with a thin layer of contact adhesive, same on the veneer - bring them together, once in contact, there is no change of repositioning, so got to be first time! Back in the press overnight. Next day, trim, make holes, whatever. Then, start to laquer. I spray about 3 coats, dry, then cut with fine wet and dry, then repeat, till a very deep layer of laquer is present. BY now the grain should have a real 3D depth of shine on it. Then I finish with cutting compound, all the way trhough to Tcut and then wax polish. I did this for the console panel in my 73GT, as it had been hacked up by previous owner - retail would be about £120, DIY was abouyt £20, and a few nights making the kitchen stink of solvents!
Some folks really hate the wood look, personally, I like the original black dashlook, but only if in nice condition - so long as the wood interior doesn't go OTT with wood everything, I think it can look very nice. I would post a pic but have no idea how to!
Hope it all works out for you whichever way you go.
best regards

Paul J Avatar
Paul Jennings
Locust Grove, ok, USA   usa
Most guys I've talked to don't like them on the 72 style dash. They say it makes the dash look junky. I personally have no opinion one way or another. If you like it, go for it.

losmorob Avatar
Robert Park
Los Molinos, CA, USA   usa
1967 Austin-Healey Sprite "Penelope"
1970 MG MGB GT "Parts For Sale!"
1971 Wolseley 16/60
1972 MG MGB GT "The Money Pit"
This might get you thinking about he possibilities.


"Now the problem you have is that when you have the unerring certainty of machinery, it is a machine. When something has foibles, it won’t handle properly, that gives it a particularly human quality because it makes mistakes. And that’s how you can build a relationship with a car that other people won’t get."
Jeremy Clarkson

tedjr Avatar
Ted R. Schneider Jr.
Akron, Ohio, USA   usa
1974 MG MGB "Ruby"
1974 MG MGB GT "The Orphan"
This is what was already on Ruby when I bought her. It appears to be the Moss type
stick-on variety. It's not "overboard" and goes well with the steering wheel and shifter knob.

(click on image to enlarge/hosted offsite)


1974 MGB "Ruby" and 1974 MGB GT "Orphan"
Ruby (MGB) Photos
Orphan (MGB GT) Photos
MGExperience Journal

Selmo Saladino Avatar
panama city beach, fl, USA   usa
1979 MG MGB "Heather"
try this link they sell dash kits at a reasonable price. heres a link to the website. . i was quite satisfied with the results.

DrewM Avatar
Drew Maddock
74 MGB roadster, Southern California, USA   usa
My personal opinion only, but I've always felt that too much wood makes an MGB look a bit strange. I like the look of Ted's car. Less is more. I wish Moss sold a wood dash kit with only the pieces of veneer for the steering wheel gauges, center console, and maybe glove box lid. That's more than enough for me.

Drew Maddock
Pasadena, California

DrewM Avatar
Drew Maddock
74 MGB roadster, Southern California, USA   usa
In reply to a post by Selmo Saladino try this link they sell dash kits at a reasonable price. heres a link to the website. . i was quite satisfied with the results.

Is the dash kit they sell real wood or a plastic wood? Looks nice, but I'm just curious.

Drew Maddock
Pasadena, California

rt72mgb Avatar
R.T. Hendry
Fort George 1812, Southern Ontario, Canada   can
1972 MG MGB ""Classy""
Thanks Mick for the info. and I hope it stops snowing for you folks in Scotland. Just leave the snow for us in Canada.. we are used to it! Anyway did you see the site Selmo sent (
Selmo, is that the trim shown on your registry for the 79?
Thanks everyone for your advice and thoughts.

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lars49 Avatar
Larry Barnes
Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA   usa
1959 MG MGA "Gramps"
1971 Norton COMMANDO 750 "Snortin Norton"
1980 MG MGB Limited Edition (LE) "Maggie"
I once saw a car that had a cocobolo dash and matching solid wood door caps. The dark reddish brown with black stripped figure sure did look good.

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

59mga coupe Avatar
Tim Gaffney
Murphy, Nc, USA   usa
1959 MG MGA 1500 Coupe
1974 MG MGB GT "Ms. Eloise"
1991 Mazda RX-7
Ted from Akrons look like the mg kit.
It is vinyl but looks nice.

Ted how is yours holding up?

Kit is now only $110.

warekl Avatar
Keith Ware
White Bear Lake Mn, USA   usa
1979 MG MGB
My 79. I only used 3 pieces, I thought the whole kit was too much. Plastic, not wood. BDTrims was the vendor....

79 RB Lowered, HS4s by Dave Braun & "Schlemmerized" Dizzy. 9:1 CR, Mild Performance Cam, 18V with OD Tranny.

dash.JPG    42.8 KB

curtis7420 Avatar
Curtis Wright
University City, MO, USA   usa
i think i like the kits for all but my dash '72-76, where it doesn't cover the complete gauge part, only an oval of the raised part. i'll admit, even still, i've thought about ordering on more than one occasion.

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