View Full Version : Dash Frustrations

05-31-2012, 07:17 PM
Not a happy camper today...

I noticed yesterday that the plastic dash material was splitting underneath my steering wheel. Started to investigate and noticed the dash and steering wheel had lots of movement, pretty sure it wasn't like that before. Stuck head under dash and discovered that when they cut out the fiberglass in the area of the ignition and blower switch panel they got way way carried away and hacked out far too much fiberglass leaving a tiny strip along the bottom only about 1/8 of an inch thick that had, not surprisingly, broken and as such the was no real support for the left lower dash, which was alowing it to flex and in turn causing the plastic dash to tear.

Well ok I'll just have to fix that it seems. Removed the switch plate and they had hacked the crap out of the dash plastic trying to mount the switch plate, so bad they had to engineer a sloppy screw into a chunk of plastic (like Starboard) and screw that in turn into the back of the fiberglass...

I moved the switch plate and the plastic L bracket holding the speedo adjustment control broke off... tried to position the broken L bracket to glue it and the friggin wires pull out of the speedo control knob.. what sort of fresh hell is this...

I have a length of aluminium L stock I cut and epoxied to the 1/8 strip of original broken fiberglass to reinforce it, it extends past the cut out so hopefully that works, Once that has cures I'll have to solder up the wires to the speedo control, then engineer a fix for the broken speedo control bracket, then engineer some means to fix the plastic dash where they tore it up behind the switch plate so the switch plate can be remounted without the Mickey Mouse fix they slapped in there originally.

This after last year having a gauge fall out of the dash with a broken bezel...

Anyway, if this works I'll have to do the same thing on the left side of the dash too as they hacked the living crap out of the fiberglass on that side to leaving only an tiny 1/8 strip of fiberglass along the bottom to handle the stresses it obviously can't handle.

Just not a happy camper...

05-31-2012, 07:25 PM
That really sucks, but isn't your boat under warranty?????

At the Home Depot/Lowes, there is some stuff called "Plastic Weld". It is like JB weld, but for plastic. I used it on broken motorcycle fairing parts and it did a good job. Might give it a try. You may try ebay and buy some new parts for cheap.

05-31-2012, 08:22 PM
my dash is very similar along the bottom below the switch panels, i discovered this while installing my wet sounds 420 and it too was broken where it got down to about 1/8" thick. also the grey vinyl on my dash is starting to tear and peal in multiple places

05-31-2012, 08:49 PM
That really sucks, but isn't your boat under warranty?????

I don't know if the dash & sub structure would still be in warranty, but if I fix it I know it will last. They couldn't have done a worse job cutting out the fiberglass to accomodate the switch panels if they'd used a dull hachett, maybe that is how they do it, I dunno... Then they Mickey Moused this thing together in the factory, they knew it was messed up, hence the Mickey Mouse band-aids. Should I expect a (maybe) warranty fix to the problem to be better than what the factory shipped? I think not.

I'll fix it. It'll be far far better than any fix I would expect from SC.

They had the chance to fix it right at the factory and they passed, they decided to Mickey Mouse band-aids and ship it anyway.

My last boat was a 2007 Bayliner, I added a depth gauge and accessory switches to the dash panels, the boat was made in Mexico, and the fiberglass dash cutouts were done in a manner I'd call professional as opposed to SC with some hatchett wielding knuckle head whacking out holes... The only thing missing is some duct tape and shoe goo holding it together... scratch that, duct tape and shoe goo would be an improvement...

06-01-2012, 01:20 PM
I am about 3/4 through my repairs of the current problem area, which is the area of the dash and sub-dash fiberglass of the ignition/blower switch panel.

Once this last round of adhesives cure I'll be installing the ignition switch plate.

I am using 1/4 inch aluminium L stock and epoxy to wrap and enlarge the bottom of the cutout, over doubling the size of the material with resins and aluminium in addition to the original 1/8 fiberglass and extending the L stock past the corners so there are no weaknesses like before.

I am ditching the screws and plastic blocks they used to Mickey Mouse the switch plate to the dash where they messed up the mounting holes. I lieu of Mickey Mouse blocks and screws I am reinforcing the dash mounting holes from behind with resin impregnated nylon staps cut to length to provide a strong yet semi felxible mounting surface much like the original dash material before SC mucked it up.

I have soldered the speedo adjust control wire back to the control where one had fallen off and entombed the connections in epoxy so they are not so dang fragile. I have reattached the broke plastic L bracket, which holds the speedo adjust control to the switch plate, with epoxy and second coated with a healthy dose of gorilla glue (it was sitting there begging to be used...)

Once the adhesives all cure I will drill out my new resin impregnated nylon strap dash backing material to allow the switch plate mounting bolts to pass thru the dash and then spin on the lock washers & nuts from behind.

Once all this is done I'll have to decide when to tear into the right hand switch plate that houses the bilge, lights, stereo, Aux switches as the cut out fiberglass is as lame as the side I am fixing now. The little 1/8 fiberglass strap hasn't broken behind the right hand switch plate yet but it is just a matter of time as the piddly 1/8 fiberglass strap ain't gonna cut it long term...

06-01-2012, 01:59 PM
All these problems seem pretty ridiculous for you to have to deal with man, sorry for the headaches.

On the other hand, I have to commend you with how many times you have used the "Mickey moused" term. Its been fun seeing when it was going to pop in there again!

06-01-2012, 02:03 PM
All these problems seem pretty ridiculous for you to have to deal with man, sorry for the headaches.

On the other hand, I have to commend you with how many times you have used the "Mickey moused" term. Its been fun seeing when it was going to pop in there again!

Yeah well I'm not happy about it but I know if I fix it it'll be bullet proof.

I seem to be imparied when I cannot curse like a sailor... You can be at ease that if you were listening into the inner dialog in my head Mickey is not mentioned... poor Mickey...

06-01-2012, 02:05 PM

06-01-2012, 02:06 PM

06-01-2012, 02:07 PM
Thanks for posting pictures. Do you have pics of how you reinforced the fiberglass and how the resin impregnated nylon straps were used? I have the same issue with mine. What are the resin impregnated nylon straps and where did you get them?

06-01-2012, 02:08 PM

06-01-2012, 02:10 PM
If you have a chance to take pictures of your work, and the materials you used. I have the same issue with mine.

I've posted some pictures. The ones I tired to take from behind are just blurs, I'll try again but no promises.

06-01-2012, 02:15 PM
Ah, ok so the straps look like nylon straps you could buy anywhere, and then you just soaked them in fiberglass resin? or epoxy?

I re-inforced the fiberglass strip at the bottom of the dash by layering on fiberglass cloth and resin. The fiberglass was not connected under there. So instead of it being too thin and then breaking, it looks like they cut straight through as the gap was about 1" with smooth edges so it doesn't look like it was broken (nice huh). I want to beef it up more by essentially closing off part of the ginormous hole they cut for the switch panel. I could easily close off 1.5" all the way around the hole which will stiffen up the dash considerably.

06-01-2012, 02:34 PM
Yup, just some nylon strap, have lots of it from old ties downs that rachetts have broken or gotten lost. Impregnated with epoxy, I am using Marine Tex on this repair as it is what I had on hand. I have had good luck in the past with the Heavy Duty Professional Epoxy from Home Depot.

I used the Marin Tex epoxy on the aluminium L stock as well. The L stock is cut about an two inches longer than the cut out so it extends an inch on each side at the bottom corners of the cut out. I applied the epoxy to teh inside edges of the L bracket, positioned it behind and beneath the 1/8 fiberglass strip, put duct tape around it from the dash to the back to catch and drippings then filled in the spaces with epoxy on the top and front so the fiberglass strip was esentially embedded in epoxy with the L stock & expoxy behind and under it. Then clamped the ends in place and let her sit all night.