The bugeye gets an unplanned interior overhaul

Discussion in 'Photo & Video Gallery' started by pleiades, Jul 15, 2020.

  1. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Not long ago I spontaneously decided to treat myself to a new steering wheel to replace my chunky 4-spoke Momo. I wanted something OEM (retaining the airbag) but sportier and higher quality, so I got a 3-spoke Impreza wheel which was then wrapped in Alcantara by Redline Goods. Highly recommend them by the way, outstanding customer service and very good craftsmanship, just a little pricey. The finished product just arrived yesterday, looks and feels great.

    Screenshot_20200715-220931_Gallery.jpg

    Now this is the only thing I had initially planned for my interior but as I'm sure you already guessed from the title, it didn't work out that way at all. In fact, this is what my interior looked like as of just a few days ago.

    Screenshot_20200715-220736_Gallery.jpg

    Yes, I admit that I have a problem. I have accepted that I am powerless over cars and my garage has become unmanageable. Now on to how everything snowballed from here...
     
  2. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Once I ordered the steering wheel I started thinking about how for quite some time I'd wanted to wrap the headliner in a black suede-like material too. With the wheel going in it seemed like a perfect time to do it, but I couldn't just do the headliner. I'd have to change the color of the pillar trim and everything else attached to the ceiling for it to really look good. After several days of experimenting with different methods, I wound up painting the pillar trim, seat belt covers, etc. with SEM medium smoke bumper color (very close match to the dash color) and the visors, lamps, etc. with SEM landau black.

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    Last edited: Jul 15, 2020
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  3. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    I wanted this to be a permanent and durable modification, so for the high-wear parts I used Rit DyeMore for synthetics wherever possible. Most of it worked pretty well and it actually penetrates into the plastic so it won't scratch off like paint.

    Screenshot_20200715-221204_Gallery.jpg

    At some point during this process I decided it was time to also update my center console, so I picked up a mostly complete one from an '06 Impreza (still had to get a couple brackets separately). Since the new console had no space for a window switch I made a little panel for it with carbon and then mounted my turbo timer in the ash tray location (also added a couple extra 12v outlets inside the console so I wouldn't have to keep that little compartment door open all the time).

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    Last edited: Jul 16, 2020
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  4. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    But apparently I couldn't stop there and sourced a decent deal on a surprisingly clean set of '05(?) STI seats (thank you to @MidnightImpreza for helping me find a new home for the old ones).

    Screenshot_20200715-232035_Gallery.jpg

    But of course that only led to ideas for other things I wanted to change. With all the blue on the seats and the new console going in I decided it was time for the blue painted trim to go.

    Screenshot_20200715-220639_Gallery.jpg

    Would've been a little too much I think. Thanks to @Krazylegz1485 I now have OEM black door switch panels and gauge cluster bezel, and the other trim that's normally silver is being painted a similar but darker color right now.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2020
  5. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Now with the STI seats in I wanted the doors to match, but rather than swapping in STI cards I'm just recovering the inserts with some foam- backed faux suede of approximately the same blue. These and the headliner I'll be taking in to a local upholstery shop shortly to have glued on to hopefully save myself the trouble of it letting loose and sagging in the future.

    At this point the only thing I hadn't yet touched was the faded light gray carpet, and since I was already gutting the rest of the interior I pulled it out and dyed it. Although I was shooting for a straight black it ended up coming out a very dark gray, apparently some of the fibers just wouldn't take any color.

    Screenshot_20200715-221132_Gallery.jpg

    A before shot of the carpet for reference, kind of sickly looking

    Screenshot_20200715-220721_Gallery.jpg

    And of course I'm also replacing the floor mats with a set of black STI ones, plus installing an IAG bracket to replace the original hook that tore out and disappeared years ago. Now, back to that console...
     

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    Last edited: Jul 15, 2020
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  6. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    On my old console I had a black suede shift boot with blue stitching that would've matched the steering wheel nicely, but of course I couldn't reuse it. The new one is just thin vinyl, and the handbrake boot of the same material was torn. So naturally I ordered a matching pair of boots from JF Customs in black suede with blue stitching. The brake handle itself is also pretty well worn and I thought about picking up a new one, but for slightly less I bought a black aluminum one from Shift Solutions with a wrinkle black grip.

    While the whole interior was out I took the opportunity to wire in a backup camera, something I'd been planning to do ever since upgrading my head unit to one that has the capability for it. Tough to make any aftermarket camera blend in but I can live with this one.

    Screenshot_20200715-234232_Gallery.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2020
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  7. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    So now I'm halfway through a huge project that I never intended to take on. If everything goes as planned I should have it wrapped up in a week or so and will update as it starts coming together.
     
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  8. Krazylegz1485
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    Krazylegz1485 Well-Known Member

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    Slightly jealous of your ambition... Haha.

    Can you just buy carbon fiber pieces in sheets or something?
     
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  9. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I ended up getting some on ebay. Roughly 2.5"x7.5"x1/8" of matte carbon was about $20. I'm sure the cost would get exponentially higher with bigger sheets (and there may be places it could be found cheaper) but I only needed a small piece.
     
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  10. GrawvyRobber
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    GrawvyRobber Active Member

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    Do you honestly like the STI seats better than the giga comfy retro bugeye seats??
     
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  11. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    The WRX seats are definitely comfortable and provide good support, but for me the upper bolsters are a bit snug on my ribcage. In aggressive cornering that helps somewhat but isn't enough to really keep me in place. I don't know what the chances are of it getting back out on a track but I'd prefer a racing seat for that over either WRX or STI seats. With how I drive 99% of the time the STI seats really seem like they'll be a bit more comfortable. Worst case if I start missing the support I might swap in some JDM bugeye STI seats that are more similar in shape to the WRX ones, but considering how rarely I drive this car I don't think it'll bother me.
     
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  12. GrawvyRobber
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    GrawvyRobber Active Member

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    Could I get a few pics of your hips/rear end for research and comparison to my own?

    Super jealous of how far you've come on this. I am LOVING what you did with that wheel. Digging the additional stripe on the top (extra rally points). Im hoping to replace my momo wheel in the near future and you're a huge inspiration all around.
     
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  13. TC Lgt
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    TC Lgt Well-Known Member

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    +1 on the pics
     
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  14. pillboy
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    pillboy Well-Known Member

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    When I first saw the picture of the turbo timer what I saw was "Fatt Dick".
     
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  15. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Nah, I didn't upload that pic.
     
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  16. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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    Lmao...sounds about right
     
  17. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Forgot to post this earlier, a photo of all the random crap I found in the car when I pulled the interior out. I always keep it very clean so this was all actually under the carpet, except for the die-cast jet toy. That fell out when I took off the LT/rear door trim panel, no idea how it would have even gotten in there. The thing I found interesting was the handful of Euros, all dated 2002-2003. I do recall seeing on the CarFax something about it being shipped to Germany when it was new (I assume to an armed service member stationed there), so apparently that report was accurate.

    Screenshot_20200716-203815_Photo Editor.jpg
     
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  18. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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    Bud Light? Ick
     
  19. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Some updates from the last few days: I disassembled all 4 door trim panels and made templates for the blue "suede" inserts, then spent a couple hours of trial and error with some small pieces of the new fabric dyeing them to approximately match the color of the STI seats. The only reasonably priced blue fabric I could find is close, but noticeably lighter. Still is just a little off but about as close as I could hope to get. With any luck I can replicate the same results with the 8 sq ft or so I have cut.

    Screenshot_20200718-114238_Gallery.jpg

    My new console and vent trim pieces got painted, similar to the OEM silver but deeper and glossier (went with Lexus atomic silver).

    Screenshot_20200718-105745_Gallery.jpg

    This morning I also finished modifying my '06 steering wheel to fit, had to swap over the airbag inflator charge and cruise control lever/switch assembly from my old wheel for it to work. The cruise was a real pain because the new wheel wasn't originally equipped with it, so I had to do a fair amount of cutting and trimming to mount it. Came out pretty nice, only the lever doesn't stick out as far as it should. I can still easily reach it with my fingertips with my hand on the wheel though so that shouldn't cause any issues. The only real drawback is that the hole in the rear housing had to be cut bigger than it should be for clearance when the lever moves, but I made a little skirt/filler/dust shield or whatever you want to call it to cover the rest of the opening. Just used some spare black suede from my headliner fabric.

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    Up next I've got to get that blue fabric dyed, bring the headliner and door inserts to the upholstery shop to be glued on, and start reassembling. The only other real modification/fabricating left to do is getting the new handbrake and brackets to bolt up, otherwise it's all just reassembly. Pretty pleased with how everything is going so far and really looking forward to seeing the final results.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2020
  20. blackozone
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    blackozone Well-Known Member

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    A few things:
    1: Where did you find the blue suede fabric?
    b) The facelift cruise control stalk can be re-pinned to the 02 column wiring, if you'd rather use that stalk.
    3: I love the steering wheel. I have a Redline wheel as well, and I absolutely love it. Beyond covering the wheel in alcantara, they also enlarge the diameter so it feels beefier. Their work is top-notch.
     
  21. pillboy
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    pillboy Well-Known Member

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    An old cobbler in Memphis.
     
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  22. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    1. The fabric I used was Synergy II Suede in blue, dyed darker with Rit Dymore sapphire (and a small amount of graphite). Several vendors carry it but I ordered mine from Albright Supply for about $20/yard. Genuine Alcantara in nogaro blue is supposedly the closest match to OEM but it's expensive. You can also get a pre-cut kit in that color from Zealous Interiors for about $100.

    2. I probably would've used the newer cruise stalk but Redline actually sourced the wheel for me for I think $30-40 and they apparently got one without cruise equipped so I had to start from scratch and reuse what I had. Turned out fine, just a lot of extra work.

    3. Absolutely, I was very pleased with the whole process start to finish. Messaged back and forth with them for days before finalizing the order and they were great the whole time. I was originally going to just order the cover and buy my own wheel but I'm glad I changed my mind. Looks amazing.
     
  23. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Decided to wrap the door card inserts myself, just finished it up. Actually seems to have turned out pretty nice but time will tell how long it lasts, used 3M 90 spray adhesive so hopefully it'll be fine. Now I've got to get them reassembled after drilling out the plastic welds to take them apart.

    Screenshot_20200719-230933_Gallery.jpg

    Edit: Got all the trim panels back together using screws in place of the plastic welds and I'm really liking how they look. My only concern now is whether or not the screw heads cause fitment issues when putting the panels back on the doors since I had to use a few washers on some to avoid poking through the other side. Supposed to be bringing the headliner in tomorrow to get wrapped so depending on how long I need to let the glue cure I might start getting everything back in after work.

    Screenshot_20200720-000503_Gallery.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2020
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  24. pillboy
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    pillboy Well-Known Member

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    I'm impressed.

    I have never loved anything in life enough to go through this.
     
  25. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    This is how it's sitting as of right now. Got a lot of stuff reinstalled this evening and it's looking pretty good so far, just need to finish the lower part of the center console and then get the seats in. Still waiting for my brake handle and shift/brake boots to get delivered, based on the tracking info the boots are probably sitting in customs right now (supplier is based in the UK). Happy to see how quickly it's coming together after spending so much time getting everything ready to go in.

    Screenshot_20200720-205035_Gallery.jpg

    Headliner turned out really nice, somehow I even managed to maneuver it into the car and attach it by myself without scratching it up. The fabric looks much darker black in person but I couldn't get a photo to come out without using the flash.

    Screenshot_20200720-222540_Gallery.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2020
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  26. tangledupinblu
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    tangledupinblu Event Coordinator Staff Member

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    Man that steering wheel looks fantastic! So does everything else though, nice job!
     
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  27. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    I've done about everything I can right now until my last few parts come in. Seats are in, steering wheel is bolted up, and I finished up the center console swap. Really happy with how it's turning out...

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    My hidden Blitz FATT D*CK turbo timer mounting and color matched AP faceplate (still waiting on the shift boot obviously)...

    Screenshot_20200721-194731_Gallery.jpg

    And my "creative" solutions for mounting the mirror controls and adding outlets to the console (again, still waiting on the shift/brake boots and brake handle so you'll have to use your imagination). Also made a little pad for the bottom of the storage compartment from an old mud flap and some extra headliner fabric...

    Screenshot_20200721-194742_Gallery.jpg
     
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  28. pillboy
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    pillboy Well-Known Member

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    So are you on work from home, paid furlough, or do you not sleep?
     
  29. pleiades
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    pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Lol, just spending all my free weekends and evenings on it, although my sleep has been compromised at times.
     
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