22 February 2011

cheap steering wheel

This is a "what I did over the weekend" post.
Actually it's a "what I did sunday night" post.

fakey bmw race car

Now that I think the overheating problem is solved in the BMW,
I've got to make a push to make the thing more presentable or at least driveable.
Than I can make the choice on what to do with it.
With gas prices getting to be $4+/gallon,
it's a good option for local transportation.

So Sunday spent some time trying to clean up the wiring,
but then for some reason started screwing around with the steering wheel.
It had a cheesy cover on it,
but underneath it had old electrical tape,
the kind that leaves that sticky film all over your hands.
So all of a sudden I started peeling it off.
Definitely one of those times when you're thinking,
"why did I start doing this?"

roachy wheel

Underneath the electrical tape was brittle fake leather,
but underneath that was a decent foam base.
I had an idea.


Another thing I didn't like about the wheel,
was the riser made it stick out really far.


It was a quick and dirty job,
but this car is all about that.
Also sanded those nubs off the foam base.


While sanding,
I also ended up scouring the anodize coat off the aluminum,
kinda a brushed look.

tressostar wheel

This was the idea -
I've had this old Tressostar road bike handlebar tape lying around for about a year now.
I had ebayed it cheap,
cause its white and looks like bandage tape probably.
But this was the perfect project for it.
If it wasn't 11pm I would have considered buying some black tape,
or brown or green,
but at $5 a roll, that would have been $20 and I'd still have that box lying around.
Also it would totally defeat the goal of spending any unnecessary $$.
This is a junkyard car!

shellac wheel

Now I could have gone down to get some RIT dye or something,
since the tape is cotton.
But the sticky part was so weak already,
I talked myself out of it.

After rolling the tape on,
the next step is a couple coats of shellac.
Shellac is a strange thing.
It's a resin secreted by a scale insect called Kerria Laca.
It's almost like varnish, but its not, it's shellac.

The cotton tape + shellac coating makes a period 60's/70's italian road bikes.
So since this thing is a 1968 BMW 1600/2002, its perfect.
It's a strange grip too,
cause it feels sticky but doesn't leave your hands sticky.

Anyway after a couple coats of this stuff,
it looked like a cast.
Now I need all my friends to sign it!

cast-like steering wheel

Next time maybe black, or green or brown maybe!
I like it though but I also like crazy panel paint,
even if it is unfinished.

hippy bmw 2002

While pulling out extra wiring,
I also ripped out the dash.
Why, I don't know.
I'm going with the rally car style I guess.
I just got to get rid of that red paint.


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