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Summary:

After all the effort to make sure the details were as good on the things that I knew people would never see... (frame, aluminum, etc.), I'm investing even more time to make sure the things that people will see are just as nice.   The dash is right up there and I really wanted to do something different but at the same time classic.    I started with the 427 SC layout but made a lot of little tweaks (moved the key from  left to right, added several new switches, centered "central" gage cluster, tried to keep everything symmetrical).  Most notable, however, is that I have decided to go with polished aluminum - rather than leather.        

After all this planning it still took me a few days to gather the courage to start cutting the holes.    I used the following steps:

bulletdrilled test holes for each hole size (in scrap metal) and tested the gage and/or switch fit
bulletscribed hole centers
bulletcenter punched
bulletdrilled 1/8" "pilot" bores using my drill press
bulletbored holes using hole saws mounted in drill press
bulletde-burred
bulletpolished to a mirror.  
[Product Image]
My Dash: Polished aluminum, 5" Classic Instruments - beveled glass and reverse-wind Speedo.  Ron Francis Ignition and polished 30A toggles, Finish Line starter, Custom Seat Heaters [Product Image]

Send me an email if you would like a copy of the DWG file for my design (below)

[Product Image]
[Product Image]Dash Wiring: 

It took a lot of extra effort but the dash is now completely disconnectable with the help of a 37 PIN AMP connector and a few Molex connectors.   I'll add a nylon loom to cover the wires once everything is tested.         

 

[Product Image]

Bezel

I literally hand-made this steering shaft cover to accommodate Russ Thompson turn signal setup. 

Tips: 

1) Cutting holes in your dash:  Order all your hardware (switches, etc.) before cutting your holes.  Keep in mind that each switch "body" takes up more room behind the dash than in front and may interfere with other switches if you get them too close.  

2) Remove all burrs:  In case you have not learned this lesson... sheet metal can give you a nasty cut.    

 
I can be reached directly at the Legacy Garage at:  klegacy@comcast.net (SR71 on FFCobra.com)
Last modified: Sept 1, 2009