More Interior Restoration

Our fintail is slowly becoming a real car.
Our rocker panels didn't look so good, however.

It takes some practice, but in just a few minutes, we had very badly dented floors looking perfect again.

With our 1966 Mercedes 230 S’s seats all rebuilt, it was time to turn our attention to the rest of our interior. First up was a thorough cleaning and inspection. We removed the remains of the original floor mats and could clearly see that the rocker panels on a fintail Mercedes are covered in a vinyl material. Assuming this material’s no longer available, we sourced a low-cost alternative from our local Lowe’s home improvement store. It is interesting how many restoration materials may be found at these stores if you take the time to look carefully.

That said, we didn’t like the way this material was fitting. Though we were trying to keep this project on a tight budget, we decided we would at least talk to the Mercedes-Benz Classic Center to see if they had any of the original vinyl covering. They did! The whole car could be restored with the original, correct material for about $100. Heck, for that price, we shelved our Lowe’s material and ordered the right stuff.

While working on the interior, we were able to pound out a couple of dents in the floor. We did this by placing a block of wood on the interior floor, then tapping it judiciously with a hammer. It takes some practice, but in just a few minutes, the badly dented floors were looking perfect again.

All this rocker work forced us to study our door jambs. While we were pleased that we had no rust to deal with, we decided it would be crazy not to paint them while we had the entire interior out of the car. Rolling restorations are always tough. Ultimately it is easier just to strip a car to its bare shell and do an complete restoration. We don’t want to get into painting this car just yet, but we have decided to paint the roof and door jambs next. With these painted, we can properly replace the door jamb vinyl when it arrives from the Mercedes-Benz Classic Center, along with the front and rear window seals.

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