Sticky Nobs (and switches)

johncaul

New Member
Messages
19
#1
Hi all, I've had my GS for about 6 months. I love the interior- all black leather it goes particularly well with the carbon trim I think. Anyway, 1 thing (or 4 things to be completely accurate) completely spoil the high quality ambience. I'm talking about the rubberized window, sport and MSP switches in the middle of the dashboard. It seems to be a common gripe on a lot of forums that the switches deteriorate. With mine the rubberized coating had started peeling off and got sticky to touch, the window switches were particularly bad. I looked into buying replacement switches, but it seems only the centre console as a whole can be replaced for something like £400 including VAT and delivery.

I then saw a post by Abyss on this forum where he outlined how to remove of the console and clean up the buttons. I've just done something similar and the results are well worth the effort. It took about 1.5 hours with an overnight cure time being required for the buttons. Apologies but I didn't take before shots, but I do have some afters. If anyone's got the same problem the steps required are as follows.

1. Unscrew the 4 allen keys on the front of the consul

2. CAREFULLY (you don't want to damage the leather surround) insert a slim flat head screwdriver between the consul and surrounding leather trim. There are no clips etc. holding it, it's just heavy and difficult to get purchase on without jacking up.

3. Pull the consul out and make a note of which connectors go where on the back. Unclip the connectors. Make a note of which front button goes where.

4. Unscrew the 9 silver screws at the back. They're all identical so need to note what goes where.

5. Unclip the silver surrounds on each of the buttons. This a good chance to clean them with isopropyl alcohol. The 4 centre buttons have unique silver surrounds. You'll see which goes where from the long pins on the back- each will only go in a specific position. You'll see what I mean when you do it!

6. You can now unclip the window rocker switches from their housings, again carefully slide a slim flat head down the side of the rocker, it should pop out. I then used coarse grade (2000) wet and dry paper to carefully remove the remnants of the rubberised coating. Be carful, you don't want to go all the way through to the plastic underneath, nor do you want to take off the letters/ icons. Then getting as close to the icons as you can use a permanent black felt tip too even up the colouring. Again be careful to not spoil the icons. Don't worry too much about the shiny finish you'll get, the next step will even everything up.

7. You now need to spray with Tamiya TS 80. It's about 6 quid a can and will give a nice clear matt finish. It dries quickly, the key here is to do lots of thin coats. Over the course of an evening I probably did 10. Leave to cure completely overnight.

8. The results are below (unfortunately on blackberry so not great quality):

Switch unclipped and sprayed:
IMG00006-20130321-1057.jpg

ready for re-assembly- see how the rubberized switches are now evenly coloured. They have also lost their "sticky" feel
IMG00007-20130321-1059.jpg

finally the re-assembled consul. Looks as good as new!
IMG00009-20130321-1105.jpg

Cheers all!

John
 

MAF260

Moderator
Messages
6,646
#3
Very nice job John, you are now the newest member to the SM OCD clinic, along with myself and MAF.
Indeed! Already did my switches as the windows and Sport button were worn. I used a plastic blade to scrape the remains of the coating off rather than sandpaper to avoid damaging the switches.

Excellent job and 'how to' John.
 
Messages
25,949
#4
Nice write up. I may well have a pop at my Classic switches at some point. While they are not sticky, some of them are a little worn.

Cheers

C
 

MAF260

Moderator
Messages
6,646
#9
a worn sport button- always a good sign that the car has been used properly!!
:biggrin: I drive mine in sport most of the time as I prefer the gear changes. I find them a bit slow otherwise. It's a pay-off between crisp changes and blips on downshift compared to the stiffer ride which can be horrible on our increasingly pot-holed roads.
 
Messages
1,639
#11
Great tutorial!
My sport button probably wont wear out as it never gets switched off. I have dribbled on it a few times however.
 

MAF260

Moderator
Messages
6,646
#12
It should be automatically in sport unless you deselect it, IMHO..!!
Mine is rather antisocial with the valved Larini exhausts, so I usually drive with sport disengaged in my road to remain friendly with my neighbours. I'd like the option to have open exhausts, sport gear changes but a less harsh ride for general driving. The combination of 19" wheels, lower suspension and tiny tyre sidewalls can make it quite crashy over our terrible road surfaces.
 
Messages
1,639
#13
Mine is rather antisocial with the valved Larini exhausts, so I usually drive with sport disengaged in my road to remain friendly with my neighbours. I'd like the option to have open exhausts, sport gear changes but a less harsh ride for general driving. The combination of 19" wheels, lower suspension and tiny tyre sidewalls can make it quite crashy over our terrible road surfaces.
Maf do you have any other exhaust mods? Or just back boxes?
 
Messages
1,639
#15
Just the rear boxes, which provide plenty of that fantastic V8 noise! IMO the standard GS exhaust is way too quiet.
I agree. Trying to decide which mods to make as we speak. Will probably start with an x pipe and see where we go from there.
 

roger102

New Member
Messages
741
#16
Mmmmmmm this soft touch coating is a real pain in the ****. I've luckily never owned a car with it before but seen hundreds of complaints on forums with the same issues.
STOP USING IT CAR MFG's its not suitable!
Now I see it's been sprayed around in the GT like mad woman's .......... Yuck!
It does not have the ability to withstand any kind of abuse, wedding rings, finger nails and wear from high contact points (switches) and its particularly **** on the type of cheap plastics and extremes of temps found in cars.
It breaks down in UV very quickly (becomes sticky) because these days it's a water based system. In the good old days it was as tough as old boots because in was a chemically cured but not eco friendly apparently, actually it needed to be heat cured through 3 stages if I remember so I'm guessing the cost for this was too expensive to amortise.
It's hard to clean, easily damaged and impossible to repair. You have the right approach with the mat lacquer if its possible to isolate the part in question.
Get rid of it and invest in newer materials I say. 4 owners on these interiors are going to look awful.
 
Messages
2
#17
I apologize if this is not the correct thread, but does anyone have advice on how to remove the plastic back behind the front seats of the GranSport? The icky plastic is so bad !
 

Specialized

Junior Member
Messages
123
#18
Good morning Mark
From my experience to all similar surface in our car(s) you just need time and patience for scrubbing this ugly thing out. You can use isopropyl alcohol on a piece of clean fabric if no images are on the surface you want to clean
 

BL330

Junior Member
Messages
674
#20
Great thread, I'll also freshen up the centre console buttons and interior door handle trim as they are looking tired too.