Is there a recommended method for restoring the luster of the laminate wood in the interior of a 76 Lancer? Mine is solid but faded.
Similarly, what is recommended for the hardwood interior items (cup holders, cutty door, etc)?
Thanks in advance.
I can totally relate to your situation. Several years ago we bought a '78 Lancer 23 Overnighter that was intact but suffering from exposure, wear, age so I decided on a complete restoration including the interior. The formica-type laminate was a walnut color and like you describe, ours had faded too. Additionally, the marine plywood it was on had begun degrading along the bottoms where it contacts the deck. When water ran across the deck, little pieces of wood would appear with it. Not good.
Doing some research I found a cabinet maker in our area who came recommended and spoke with him on the phone. We discussed my plan to use the old interior parts I'd removed as the templates for cutting new marine plywood parts. As a new, somewhat lighter finish I settled on a Wilsonart "Nepal Teak" laminate. So I loaded up the utility trailer one Saturday and dropped them off.
It turned out great. He even Epi-phane coated the bare plywood interior panels and to prevent the wicking issue that degraded the bottoms of the seat bases, he laminated those to seal them.
Those wood trim pieces are teak and will respond beautifully to refinishing. I had them sanded and recoated in Epi-phanes varnish. Really stunning results.
All told the cost including laminating and cutting a new dash to fit some extra gauges, the sink console w new Wilsonart top, right around $3500. He admitted he underbid but honored his quote.
Sorry I can't link the photos that are in PhotoBucket as they are holding them hostage unless I pay their subscription. Not my idea of a way to build a business!
You're welcome to email me if you'd like photos.