**How To** Headbanger Cabinet 74-75 Westfalia

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**How To** Headbanger Cabinet 74-75 Westfalia

Post by 71_georgia_beetle on Thu Feb 12, 2009 1:18 am

So I had a post about the 74-75 headbanger cabinet or the lack there of. I researched and received all kinds of ideas and my original assumption was correct, the 74 (early 75) did not have the above mentioned cabinet, just the 1/8" plastic hinge cover. So.............I decided to make one and here it is.

Brought to you by The New Redneck Workshop.


OK, the materials I used are:

1/2" particle board (I now recommend 1/2" MDF because of the porous nature of PB when routed)
1/4" Smooth ply or finished underlayment.
1-1/4" wood screws
Bondo (body filler)
Gorilla glue
Brown Krylon H2O Low VOC Spray Paint
Black Krylon semi-gloss

Measurements:
Width at widest point (the curved hinge wings extend beyond the face width) 51 1/2"
Face width 51 1/16"
Hinge notches 2"
Face height 5"
Floor depth (from face to rear) 11 1/4"

I started by tracing the outline of the face using the old hinge cover. This is the easiest way to get the side contours.


While drawing out the pattern, go ahead an reference the cabinet line. This is the area that will go on top/behind the closet. This will come in handy later.


Once you have cut out the rough pattern, clamp the piece to a work surface and cut the side profiles with a jigsaw.


Finished face with side profiles cut.


Profile.


The face will sit perfect in a 1" channel that was occupied by the plastic hinge cover we are replacing. In that channel there are four screw heads. Screws that hold the upper bead. You must mark and notch out for these in order for the face to fit flush.


Draw out your desired opening. This part is your choice. I chose an 18" x 3-1/2" opening with rounded corners. I used a socket to draw out the corners.


Drill a blade size appropriate starter hole and cut out the opening.


I used an oscillating table sander to smooth out the cut lines. This can be done by hand.


I used a 1/2" round over bit to soften the hole opening edge. You could knock the edge off with sandpaper or leave it square if you are going to cover with laminate and T Track the inside.


Remember to support the center when routing as these areas are thin now.


Finished edge.


With the blade height set at 1/4" and the fence set away at 1/4", I made two passes to create a rabbet to receive the 1/4" bottom.


Once again I used the old cover to make a template for the bottom or floor.


I used a 3/8" brad point bit to get a crisp corner on the 2" hinge cut outs.


I used 3" x 7" and a 1" x 1" x 6" pieces of scrap "hardwood" for my bracing. The bracing serves two purposes, strength and to keep items stored, out of the hinges. I used hardwood so that I could get a very tight bite when pulling the two pieces together. The side brace is 1" off if the hinge cutout.


Mock up, clamp and pre-drill all the pieces together. I counter sunk the screw heads to get a smooth final finish.


I did a dry fit and tweaked as needed. As mentioned at the beginning, the closet line is a reference where you will have to do some sanding/filing.


Once you test fitting is complete, glue, screw and clamp all the pieces.


Once the glue has dried, sand everything smooth. I started with 80grit to 120 and finally 220.


Use a piece of Plexiglas or plastic to mix the body filler (Bondo) according to the directions. And yes, Bondo can be used on wood that contains less than 11% moisture. Most "white", kiln dried dimensional lumber has between 2 and 7%.


Fill all the imperfections and screw holes.


Once the Bondo set I sanded everything smooth (80, 120 and 220) and get it several coats of primer. I then sanded the primer smooth with 220grit.


I opted to paint vs a laminate or stain. 1. because I couldn't find a laminate that matched and I didn't stain because of the particle board. Here you can see the result I was going for. Brown base with a spatter of black to break up the "BROWN". This kinda resembled what the panels do, brown wood with black veins. I did this by painting the entire piece with brown and while still wet I misted it (about 18" away) with black. I varied it with more concentration of black in some areas.


Here you can kind of see the effect I was going for. I let the piece cure overnight.


Once it had cured out I used the old cover to mark out the holes and drilled. I used a 3/16 " bit.
http://www.burelphotography.com/volkswagen/headbanger/DSCN0703.JPG

Mount the unit using the old hardware and replace any that is damaged. Remember the snaps or you'll remember them in the woods when you try and mount the mosquito net. Also be mindful of the defrost power wires, make sure they are inside the hinge cut out.


The front is mounted in that channel I mentioned with 4, 1" wood screws. I chose black. And that's it!


I later cut and sewn a piece of black fabric to cover the "guts" or hinge tension rods seen in this photo.
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Re: **How To** Headbanger Cabinet 74-75 Westfalia

Post by 69panel on Thu Feb 12, 2009 9:47 am

Nice work and excellent photo documentary. Cool
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