Dashboard Destruction

The plan was to remove the dash so I could get to the heater core and prepare the new gauges to be installed. This didn’t really happen.

I spent about 3 hours trying to remove the entire dash. I managed to get the lower portion off but the upper portion simply didn’t want to be removed. I even bought a repair manual for the Tercel which wasn’t much help. The heater core is buried up under the dash and I don’t think I can get it out with the dash in place. I was going to do something similar to what Gavin had done with his heater. Now, it looks like it’s going to have to be something that uses the existing heater core rather than me putting in a new electric core. In the end I think this will certainly be easier but it will no doubt add to the cost of the project.

Since the upper dash was not designed to be removed, I’m going to have to do some creative instrument placement. I haven’t decided yet, but two options are kind of on the table at the moment:

  • Place the extra gauges on the dash in front of the current instruments (leaving only the speedometer visible). This would make it very easy to read but would not look incredible.
  • Mount the gauges to the frame between the windshield and door, similar to what some truckers and racers do. This will also be very visible but it would also cut down some on the visibility of the road – that concerns me.

I suppose time will tell. Once the parts have actually arrived I’ll put them in a few different places and see what works. If anyone has suggestions feel free to send me a message.

All was not lost on the day. I did manage to get the engine compartment pretty much cleaned out and degreased. It looks much better in there! I will have to do some work on some small surface rust, other than that it is ready for the motor.

Also got the clutch pedal removed. This is pretty small I suppose, and it didn’t really need to be done. My worry was that I would try and use the clutch to shift quickly forgetting that there was no clutch. Also, if anyone else drives the car they would naturally try and use the clutch and shift like a regular car. Since the car is going to be a clutchless drive system, I decided to just remove the clutch pedal.