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Old 08-23-2007, 08:07 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Southeast
Posts: 1,518
E Z trim job to do!

Ok guys, it only took me over 4 days to do what amounts to about a 30 minute job, but I got though it.

If you ever need to replace torn support pillar vinyl, that pillar where your seat belt comes out from, here's how to do it....

First, order your new vinyl and get 3M spray Trim Adhesive. It's probably best to NOT use ANY adhesive other than that. Other adhesives may not hold up to the heat, and some that can aren't tacky allowing you to move the material once you place it. I got my vinyl from a place that specializes in car vinyl, so it holds up to the heat, and they were able to match the color. Most fabric places didn't have the burgundy color I needed.

When you have your vinyl, move the front seat up as far as it will go. From the rear passenger footwell area, there are 2 screws in the plastic piece at the bottom of the pillar, remove those, and pull that plastic piece down to separate it from the vinyl wrapped pillar. Note the plastic piece has a ridge in it, when you put it back together, the pillar needs to go back in there.

With the pillar loose at the bottom, pull a bit out and down, to pop the clip that's holding the top of the pillar. With the entire pillar loose, pop off the black cap over the seat belt nut, at the footwell area. With the seatbelt loose, run it through the pillar so you can completely remove it.

Take off the old vinyl. It's probably shrunk over the years, so you're going to want to trace it leaving 1/4" extra on all sides. Cut out the vinyl.

Here's the fun part! You get to spray the adhesive all over the place, missing where it needs to go! By looking at your old vinyl, you'll see there's pretty much only adhesive on the part that wraps around the backside of the pillar. You need to spray about 15" at a whack, both on the plastic pillar, and the ends of the vinyl only, not on all the vinyl. I sprayed over a garbage can or you can go out to the yard, because you can't aim the spray that well.

Start on a straight side area. Once you spray, you have to wait a minute so it turns from liquid state to a sticky state. Once sticky, go inside to a table or other flat surface that you can work on. Making sure your vinyl is straight, not going on caty-wompus, curl the ends of the vinyl around the plastic piece. Take your time, you have about 4 minutes before it really dries up on you. The worst thing you can do, is to pull the vinyl so its crooked because you'll really be messed up later down the line. Make sure your hole for the seatbelt is still lined up as you go, but don't do the seatbelt area yet.

Continue on the perimeter, and once you're pretty well around it, you can do the cut out part for the seatbelt.

Once complete, make sure all the ends are down well. You're ready to replace it into your car. When doing so, you'll probably have to pull out the door seals near where the pillar is. They just pull straight out. Put the seatbelt back through, and position the pillar in place in the ridge of the plastic base. Screw the base in. For the top part, once the pillar is correctly in place, view the clip at the top to make sure it's directly over the hole, and wap the pillar in that area pretty hard with the side of your fist. Hopefully it will go in the first time. Then put the door seal back in, bottom up, and making sure the special protruding 3" fitted rubber part on the door seal goes into the back of the pillar. You might have to play with it a bit, but it's a breeze. Just remember the door seal goes OVER the pillar to give it a nice finished look.

Rebolt your seatbelt into the footwell area and pop on the plastic cap. Make sure to move your seatbelt forward by hand, in front of the seat to its normal position, to prevent it from ripping your new vinyl when you move your seat back to its proper position.

Jeff 1991 300d, 111k
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