He is right. On my 70 is painted the silver with testors silver, the masked it off and painted the black. Then for the letters and small lines I bought a bottle of testors silver and a very small yet stiff brush, and just took my time. It looks great, and was a heck of alot cheaper. Mat
FWIW, my black 72 Heavy Chevy did not have any silver or chrome on it. I used a Testors paint stick and it turned out very nice. I , too, thought the trim was supposed to be chrome but now I am glad to see it is not.
You're gauges are surrounded by a CHROME trim ring - the way the factory does it is by chroming the entire panel then painting the area around the guages satin black and the glove box area a corresponding interior color. You can check this by examining a scratched area - the chrome will show thru. Most cars have been since painted all black or have gone the "Testors" route. Now to answer your question, I had my dash done by a place called Quicksilver in Southern California. They've gone out of business but I know one of the guys that owned it still does it on the side. It took me three years (yes, years) to get mine back but it looks unbelievable. If you have a lot of time let me know and I'll dig up the number for you.
Thanks Kevin...There's more chrome showing through my dash than black paint left on it! Since I originaly posted this I have talked to a lot of plastic chromers, all some sort of vacuum process and one electro process. The electro sounds good but may be expensive. Anyway it wouldn't be done untill Feb. and I'm not that patient. All the vacuum guys don't have a tank large enough to fit the 70-72 dash.After many recomendations I found a place in Ohio that can fit my dash and have it back in 2 weeks! I'll strip it and have it there by the end of the week. Also heard about Quick-Chrome,glad you didn't have problems with them going out of biz and what. Thanks again.
I own a 72 ss and I think that around the dash bezel outer edge on the tach and spedo etc was a type of chrome. I'm not sure of the correct process that was used, but I seem to recall something about plastic metalizing. It was a process similar to chrome plating on steel. I have redone my dash with the Testers model paint, and while it looked fine at a distance it has started turning a grayish look after about a year.
Yes… it’s my response, clear down here at the bottom of this thread. From what I’ve found out, both methods are correct form GM. I’ve been in contact with someone from Massachusetts who is presently restoring my dash for a 71 SS. He states that BOTH the “Vacuum Metalizing” process and the “Chrome Plating & Painting” processes are Correct. He contended that the 70 SS models were plated then painted and this continued up to some point in the 1971 model year to which, GM then switched the process over to vacuum metalizing. My best guess is (and it is only that) is because of the $Cost$ factor. He claimed the if your were to replace the dash of ’70-‘72 Chevelle SS w/ an NOS from GM, that it would be the vacuum metalizing method type of finish for the part replacement directly form them. The exact time of the switch in the 1971 production is undetermined because unknown date which the assembly lines ran out of this particular method of chrome plating style on dashes. The best guess was mid to late 1971, but because of what I aforementioned earlier, it’s just hard to tell. I will be in future correspondence with this fellow to ask where he came across his information.
I’ve been in contact with a gentleman from Delaware, who has judged shows for the NCOA and he stated that chrome plating & painting is simply not the way these dashes were produced, but I’m not so sure this is true.
Out of personal Preference, I have decided to have mine chrome plated, then painted. I really do not know if this was the way my car came from the factory but like they say… “It’s your car, and you do with it as you wish”.
Chrome Plating followed by painting is Definitely Not the $Cheap$ method & it takes a lot longer to have the project finished, compared to the painting method. Then, there’s the question of whether the paint will stick to the chrome plating over a period of time.
Yup, nothing like throwing in a can of worms, eh?
If anyone can offer their experiences and or knowledge, I’d sure like to welcome them on this matter.
Another option which I did cost me $15.00 total supplies and alot of my time.
Your local hobby shop sells a product called "Bare Metal (Chrome)". This is a gold leaf type product that is chrome plate, razor thin , and adhesive-backed. You trim this to the appropriate size, remove the backing and place over the desired area and burnish with toothpick or fingernail. Because the product is so thin it is tough to work with and will take some time to learn to apply, but the results are outstanding!
Please e-mail me if you have other questions.
1970 Chevelle SS Convertible
1937 Master Business Coupe
1996 S-10 Blazer
The trim on the dash is chrome(plastic chrome) that was applied by using a vacum press, and heat to adhere a sheet of film over the entire dash. I know this to be true because I have a NOS 70 dash shell thats perfect and it is chrome not paint. I think the reason why people think that it was originally paint is because most dashes over the years oxidized from the heat and the sun.
There is a place in Mi., in a city called Westland that has a vacum bed large enough to rechrome the entire dash. I have scene him advertise in Tean Chevelle before. I have the number somewhere and I will try to repost under this ad. The cost of his services is about 600 bones. Hope this helps
If any of you attended the Aces Northwest Regional show this past summer in Graham, WA, you may have seen the winning '70. It was a stunning restoration with no expense spared - a black LS-5 with white stripes. Every nut and bolt had been meticulously replaced or refinished. One thing that caught my attention was the chrome trim on his gauges. Although beautifully done, it was too "bright". Subsequently, I heard that modern techniques yield this result although I don't know why. Although I've never seen an original in pristine condition I'm told it appeared to have a bit less lustre. Personally, I wouldn't care and his car was killer!
American Plastic Chrome restores the finish on these dashes to look like new! (They did the dash in my 72 El Camino)They stripped it, plated it, then painted it the correct shade of black. This process is not cheap by any means! If your car is a driver or you're not in the market for a resto, then the other methods outlined above are totally cool.
Call Chuck at 1-734-721-1967 days or Rod at 1-734-261-4454 eves.
69 SS396 69 Malibu Ragtop
70 Monte 72 El Camino
Team Chevelle Gold #33
ACES Member #02913
Chevelle Club of Michigan
Rode shotgun in the ONLY Z16 convertible made.
[This message has been edited by Tom Lasater (edited 01-07-2000).]
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