Jump to content

66-70 Riviera Trunk Felt Replacement


Recommended Posts

I will outline creating & replacing the aftermarket (and the original) felt trunk mats in my 1968 Riviera.

I will be selling my own replacement trunk felt mat kit as soon as I get my templates finalized and I am happy with the results.

Pricing is yet to be determined but it will be competitive with the kit Classic Buick's is offering.

 

List of materials I used:

* Original trunk felt mats (if available)

* 2 yards of 36" x 54" Extra Yard of Black Felt (Classic Buick's part #: 1529501) (this is enough to make all 7 of the floor mats. You need another yard for the spare tire board cover)

* 1 NEW King size mattress shipping box (I paid $5.00 for the one I got at a local moving and storage company)

* Sharp tip felt marker (to draw mat outlines on cardboard)

* 1 can of gel contact cement (VERY flammable! Be sure to use this in a WELL ventilated enclosure or outdoors).

* 1 3" paint brush (a cheap horsehair one will do)

* A pair of knee pads (if you are old like me, this is a MUST!)

* Box knife with several new razor blades

* New or well sharpened cloth cutting scissors (ask your wife nicely before borrowing her ✂️)

* Cloth outlining chalk or pencil (white color is best against the black felt)

* Duct tape and left over cardboard to modify templates if necessary

* Paper towels to wipe up excess contact cement

* Electric Iron with steam feature

* Old clean cotton towels or cotton shop rags to cover felt when ironing it flat

 

In June 2017 I purchased a "Trunk Mat Set; 66-68 Riviera 7pc Black Felt" from Classic Buick's (www.classicbuicks.com). After removing my original trunk felt pieces, I laid the new felt kit pieces over the original pieces. It was obvious that I was going to have to cut the new pieces to make them more closely match the original pieces of felt.

 

Also, a glaring issue was going to be the right floor piece that goes around the right side of the spare tire well. The new kit part was not going to cover the lower right trunk floor at all! After I installed the new kit I ended up having to patch in left over felt material to cover the exposed trunk floor pan. It looked like a butchered up trunk floor and I was not a happy camper when it I was done.

 

In the picture below look in the lower right corner to see the patch job. This kit also did not extend into the spare tire well recessed rim, leaving the painted surfaces exposed.

newtrunkfeltkit.thumb.jpg.f4e85e6b16a4a1be195162b68af1b465.jpg

 

This kit reminds me of a 10th generation Xerox copy, it kind of looks like the original but it is now something completely different.

I saved my original trunk felt pieces and I said to myself "I can make a better kit than this piece of junk!".

 

Needless to say I was embarrassed to have my trunk lid open during car shows but I suffered through it until today (July 23, 2018).

 

I had already bought two running yards of the black felt trunk material from Classic Buick's with the intention of making my own mats. This measured 72" x 54". I also bought a large King mattress box from a moving and storage company. Luckily the dimensions were exactly the same as my felt.

I did determine that I would need three running yards of felt material to make a trunk kit that includes the spare tire board cover. (I kept the "kit" cover on my spare tire board.)

 

The first thing I did was cut the mattress box up so I was working with the side without the seam in order to make my new mat templates. I then cut the seam side into two halves in which to draw out the spare tire cover template and to have a cutting surface under my templates.

20180723_122006.thumb.jpg.4c8f124d961e649451f095a93e256254.jpg

Yes, that is a clothes iron. I used it on high heat steam setting to iron flat the original felt mats. This is necessary in order to draw the cardboard templates as accurate as possible.

I highly recommend using a clean cotton towel or clean cotton shop rags when ironing the felt because the material will melt when applying a hot iron to it. Also the old glue can coat the iron, and this will definitely make Mama a very unhappy person! ?

20180723_122011.thumb.jpg.2822369a6796074025bb056685662609.jpg

The spare tire cover is slightly cupped from years of being screwed down over the tire. I put on knee pads then turned the cover cup side of the board up. I then carefully pressed my knees down on either side of the center hole to press the board flat, ensuring I could get the correct diameter template. I drew the outline of the board, the center hole and side cutout with a fine tip felt marker. When cutting the cardboard, I used a box cutter with a new razor blade. It may be necessary to turn the template cardboard over to complete cutting out the round template. I used a spray paint can lid to aid in cutting out the center hole.

 

Once I drew outlines of all of the original felt pieces on the cardboard, I carefully cut them out with the box knife with another new blade. You may be able to cut out the cardboard templates with a very sharp pair of scissors. (mine would not do the job).

 

I marked all of the new cardboard templates with the position name and correct orientation of the mat. I tried to use the straight edges of the felt as much as possible in order to conserve the felt and to cut down on the amount of cutting I would have to do. I bought a new pair of millinery scissors to cut the felt. I highly recommend either a new pair of scissors or sharpening the ones you have. I will make cutting the material SO much easier!

 

Below are all of the trunk floor mat templates laid out on the 72" x 54" felt material.

20180723_145253.thumb.jpg.04a266db8fc684b9315852dedda57d62.jpg

 

I used a white fabric pencil to draw outlines of each template onto the felt material. I was not very happy with this pencil because it left such a light drawing on the material. Next time I will go to the fabric store and get one of the outlining chalks and see if this produces a more visible white outline.

 

Below is the felt with some of the mats cut out but still showing the drawn outlines of the rest of the mats.

20180723_154354.thumb.jpg.daf301bc07075a65c48c63e8fb0c0eae.jpg

 

As I cut each mat out I took it to the car and did a test fit to make sure it fit the area it is supposed to cover.

20180723_154133.thumb.jpg.2992ef3ba1a41535a52276dfd787a8f6.jpg

 

I discovered after cutting out the new right trunk pan mat that the original mat had shrunk and the holes for the tire iron clips were no longer in the correct position. Luckily I had not cut out the holes for the clips before I test fitted the mat. I cut out the holes with the mat in the trunk then I added an extension to the right edge of that floor template and used my new mat as a template to cut out the tire iron clip holes in the correct location on the modified template.

 

I also discovered that this same mat did not cover a section of the trunk floor pan right behind the wheel well, necessitating the need for a 12" x 6" patch between this mat and the one covering the gas tank vent pipes and the wheel well. See below.

20180723_162057.thumb.jpg.6ed0af9f755e160166c445a9e89ce4d1.jpg

On the next mat set I cut out, I will extend the top border enough to cover this area without needing a patch.

 

Below are all of the new mat pieces and the spare cover laid in the trunk prior to applying the contact cement.

20180723_162248.thumb.jpg.d1334ad9f4f2d3ae5d530e805993c8ee.jpg

 

20180723_162254.thumb.jpg.a71e89d5ea376c5d910a769fba7b8d7e.jpg

 

Below are the mats after cementing them into place. I recommend cementing the mats wearing a respirator or doing it in phases with some time to get some fresh air. I had a bit of a headache after I finished applying the cement and fitting the mats.

20180723_171355.thumb.jpg.5c8195239c6acbc796cc7117230b215a.jpg

 

20180723_171358.thumb.jpg.b6b6e3956b9ccd03044da7b8a286cc18.jpg

 

20180723_171400.thumb.jpg.26b6c6757aceb26b41718d2f8a03d166.jpg

 

Compare how the trunk looks with the pieces I made vs. those from the "kit" I bought. The difference is like night and day!

I am very happy with the results and I know I can offer a replacement kit for the 66-68's that will be far superior to the one currently on the market. If I can get a set of 69-70 trunk floor felt mats to see if they differ from my 68, I will try to produce a kit for those also.

20180723_171349.thumb.jpg.1b5c2d254c58577caca6b44379146a2c.jpg

 

If anyone has any questions about this process, please don't hesitate to contact me.

 

 

 

Edited by NC68Riviera (see edit history)
  • Like 4
  • Thanks 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Looks nice Mike. Hadn't heard the kits fits so poorly but your pic tells the story. I always cut my own so can appreciate the effort and time it takes. Like you I found 3 yards of material is needed.

Now if we could get trunk cardboard that has the blue/grey fleck pattern just like original. I never figured out a way to duplicate that finish.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, JZRIV said:

Now if we could get trunk cardboard that has the blue/grey fleck pattern just like original.

I had been carrying around my old trunk boards for the past year after buying a repro set. I finally decided to toss the originals because I too had no idea where to find a matching colored fiber board. Plus, even if I found a matching fiber board I have no way of bending and cutting a fiber board neatly.

Link to post
Share on other sites

No spatter. I do have that aqua / black spatter in my '73. Looks good in the Sun.

GM did good work printing the fibers on the second gen. boards. Would be costly to reproduce for such a small market?

 

 

 

 

 

 

1967.jpg

Edited by PWB (see edit history)
  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice write up Mike, looks very good - I sorta like the "buzz" you get from the contact cement !! :D haha

Much better than that sloppy kit shown in your before photo !

Been on my list of "round-to-it's" for some time now, but I'm a great procrastinator.

Purchased lots of felt from CARS INC way back in the day.

Glen even threw in a little extra to cover the cardboard liners.

'68 -'69 liners  were just a plain grey surface cardboard Jason, and Mr. Paul  -  no matching printed fibres ?

Where are your cardboard liners Mike, gonna cover them in the felt for a svelte look too ?

Sure makes a big difference in the appearance ! 

Edited by 68RIVGS (see edit history)
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the compliment. I don't get a buzz from the cement, but a good headache.

I have the the Repops boards so no I won't be recovering them.

I wish there was a way to not destroy the board when getting the jack out, other than removing the retaining screw and removing the board and jack as one unit. 

Edited by NC68Riviera (see edit history)
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/24/2018 at 12:08 PM, PWB said:

GM did good work printing the fibers on the second gen. boards. Would be costly to reproduce for such a small market?

 

The mat looks like some form of a texture applied paint finish probably using the mat as the "pressure paint brush" for the board. It would probably take a LOT of trial and error using original mat material to find the right combination of paint and pressure to transfer the 'painted weave' to the board.. and in the large sizes needed, no less...

 

In today's day and age of high resolution imagery and Photo-shop-tom-foolery, I suspect the board could easily be replicated by simply photographing the actual mat and then printing it on an appropriate board medium. Assuming one has a mat in great condition, taking a high resolution image and manipulating it on the computer to match the desired colour is relatively easy (for some, I know...), it's finding a print house than can print on the board material, AND in the sizes needed, that could be a bit more of a challenge, especially if one wants/needs to minimize cost. 

 

Personally, I would try the art department of a local college/university/high school to see if they had any interest/capabilities/ideas in the project. They often simply work for cost of materials. I'm sure at worst they wouldn't mind taking a decent 'professional' photograph of the mat if they didn't have the printing capabilities.

 

For what it's worth, I'm also doing the trunk in my '64. I'm just starting to make cardboard templates of all of my original liners and cardboards. Been looking at different material to use, I'm not overly concerned with having it 100% factory correct, (shipping costs and US exchange and duties/taxes are a killer these days) but to the non-Riv lay-person, (and to me...) I want to present a look that, right, wrong, or indifferent,  looks like it coulda/shoulda been factory. I'll let youz know how it goes...

 

Anyway, Mike S. great post on your '68's trunk, well done...

 

Later,

 

Mike Swick

Edmonton, AB

----

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, 68RIVGS said:

Nice write up Mike, looks very good - I sorta like the "buzz" you get from the contact cement !! :D haha

Much better than that sloppy kit shown in your before photo !

Been on my list of "round-to-it's" for some time now, but I'm a great procrastinator.

Purchased lots of felt from CARS INC way back in the day.

Glen even threw in a little extra to cover the cardboard liners.

'68 -'69 liners  were just a plain grey surface cardboard Jason, and Mr. Paul  -  no matching printed fibres ?

Where are your cardboard liners Mike, gonna cover them in the felt for a svelte look too ?

Sure makes a big difference in the appearance ! 

Whoa, no board print on '68 up?

They got stiffed. If thats the case then I'm gonna just glue mat/carpet on my '69 boards...when I get a '69!

 

Awesome work Mr. Mike 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/24/2018 at 8:40 AM, JZRIV said:

Looks nice Mike. Hadn't heard the kits fits so poorly but your pic tells the story. I always cut my own so can appreciate the effort and time it takes. Like you I found 3 yards of material is needed.

Now if we could get trunk cardboard that has the blue/grey fleck pattern just like original. I never figured out a way to duplicate that finish.

Trunk cardboard with blue/gray fleck? What year or years Jason? Thanks,

Tom

Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, NC68Riviera said:

 

I have the the Repops boards so no I won't be recovering them.

I wish there was a way to not destroy the board when getting the jack out, other than removing the retaining screw and removing the board and jack as one unit. 

 

Recovered trunk cardboards would give a more finished look to the overall trunk area Mike - just my  opinion !

You could reinforce the jack shaft cut out with some plastic edging to reduce wear 'n tear on the board ?

Printed cardboard trunk liners must be a '66, and maybe a '67 only luxury Mr. Paul ?

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, 1965rivgs said:

Trunk cardboard with blue/gray fleck? What year or years Jason? Thanks,

Tom

Tom,

Well I thought 67, 8, 9 and 70 was same but Randy said 68 was plain. Randy are you 100% sure? 66 was of course medium gray like 65 except for very late production when they went to black gray fleck carpert and dark gray/black cardboard. I've never seen one of these late 66s in person to know what the cardboard looked like.

 

I found a 68 on ebay with original trunk and the liner has the blue/gray print.

As Mike Swick mentioned above I bet a graphics place could duplicate the finish in a vinyl covering of some sort that could be applied over the cardboard for the purist minded. It always bothered me in the 67 to not have that correct finish. 

Pic is from the ebay 68 https://www.ebay.com/itm/1968-Buick-Riviera/192605094342?hash=item2cd82881c6:g:vzoAAOSw-GBbSneN&vxp=mtr

Based on VIN its later production

s-l1600a.jpg

Edited by JZRIV (see edit history)
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, JZRIV said:

Tom,

Well I thought 67, 8, 9 and 70 was same but Randy said 68 was plain. Randy are you 100% sure? 66 was of course medium gray like 65 except for very late production when they went to black gray fleck carpert and dark gray/black cardboard. I've never seen one of these late 66s in person to know what the cardboard looked like.

 

I found a 68 on ebay with original trunk and the liner has the blue/gray print.

As Mike Swick mentioned above I bet a graphics place could duplicate the finish in a vinyl covering of some sort that could be applied over the cardboard for the purist minded. It always bothered me in the 67 to not have that correct finish. 

Pic is from the ebay 68 https://www.ebay.com/itm/1968-Buick-Riviera/192605094342?hash=item2cd82881c6:g:vzoAAOSw-GBbSneN&vxp=mtr

Based on VIN its later production

s-l1600a.jpg

Jason, take a look at the jack stowage picture from my 69 that is posted in the folder on the ROA website.  You will see that mine matches the picture above.  Mine seems a bit darker but I think that is related to the lighting at the time.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, JZRIV said:

 

Well I thought 67, 8, 9 and 70 was same but Randy said 68 was plain. Randy are you 100% sure? 66 was of course medium gray like 65 except for very late production when they went to black gray fleck carpert and dark gray/black cardboard. I've never seen one of these late 66s in person to know what the cardboard looked like.

Based on VIN its later production

s-l1600a.jpg

 

. . . been soooooooooooooo long since I've even looked at mine Jason, I might well be wrong !

I'll have to dig up my originals to  double check and confirm later.

You would assume they are all the same for 2nd gen cars, judging from your evilBay pic and Pat's photo !

Link to post
Share on other sites
16 hours ago, Pat Curran said:

Jason, take a look at the jack stowage picture from my 69 that is posted in the folder on the ROA website.  You will see that mine matches the picture above.  Mine seems a bit darker but I think that is related to the lighting at the time.

Of course Pat - How could I have forgot to look at your pic! Attached.

DSC00063.jpg

Edited by JZRIV (see edit history)
Link to post
Share on other sites

I think there is always a chance for slight variances during production runs.  The only way to be assured of a perfect match is if an item was manufactured in the same "lot."  This goes for many items, not just automotive parts.  One of my neighbors put a new roof on his house a couple of years ago and not all the shingles were from the same lot.  Depending on how the the sun is hitting the roof, you can tell which shingles were from a different lot.  

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

What about the tail light cardboard?  Unlike the patterned quarter panel cardboard, mine are black, but don't look as though they have been replaced (recently, anyway)...

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, EmTee said:

What about the tail light cardboard?  Unlike the patterned quarter panel cardboard, mine are black, but don't look as though they have been replaced (recently, anyway)...

I don't believe 68's have taillight boards. Mine didn't, at least.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Correct - 68-70s do not have taillight boards. Just the two sides.

Since we are on subject, these trunk boards are one of the older Riviera part reproductions. I believe Lou Adzima had them done as was selling in the late 80s.....but I could be mistaken.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, JZRIV said:

Correct - 68-70s do not have taillight boards. Just the two sides.

 

Jason, so what's correct for the '67 taillight cardboard?  Mine are black -- is that correct?

Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, EmTee said:

 

Jason, so what's correct for the '67 taillight cardboard?  Mine are black -- is that correct?

EmTee, hope all is well.

My '67 tail boards have the fibers printed on the boards. We both have deluxe interiors - not sure that's relevant to trunk.

I've seen '68 cars with printed fibers on boards.

Perhaps different sources availed?

 

Edited by PWB (see edit history)
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, EmTee said:

 

Jason, so what's correct for the '67 taillight cardboard?  Mine are black -- is that correct?

Tim,

They should have the same print as sides. The taillight boards age much quicker because of notorious water leaks at the welded quarter/rear panel joints as well as getting beat up from loading and unloading the trunk and being removed every time one of the 4 bulbs burn out. Because of this they may get painted, or with repops being available for nearly 30 years, replaced.

Buick went to the extravagant extent to design printed boards so I'd think mismatched boards might fail a quality check on the production line. Though it has been said many times variation in less critical areas is always possible.

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Paul & Jason for the replies to my question about the taillight cardboard.  Now back to Mike's originally scheduled trunk felt program...  :lol:

  • Haha 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I have two trunk mat kits ready for sale to anyone needing new mats.

These are produced from the trunk mat templates I made with a modification to the right trunk mat extending the top right border to meet the right rear wheel well hump.

Below is a picture of one of the two kits laid out as they should be installed in the trunk. A copy of this photo will be included with each kit sold to use as a reference.

Trunk-mat-image-labeled1.thumb.jpg.b60efb45187268a6e8583b4bcec5c844.jpg

I am offering these kits for an introductory price of $95.00 plus USPS shipping worldwide. If feedback is favorable and there is interest in purchasing these kits, I will ramp up production.

Please PM me if you wish to purchase a kit or if you have any questions.

Thanks for everyone's feedback on this project!

Edited by NC68Riviera (see edit history)
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 year later...

Mike, thanks for the blog! Very thorough! Do you have any recommendations on floor mats? I ordered some on eBay that were supposed to be custom fit for my 68, but they weren’t close. $160 but they had free returns.

i initially wanted loop, but have possibly been steered to original type rubber. I can’t seem to track any down.

Attached are the ones that didn’t fit.

thanks!

Jeff

A110B0B1-94FD-4A2D-9692-0EEDAC2B7CAB.jpeg

196F6F3B-1AA4-4A02-A70E-95523A211940.jpeg

Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, 68KERR said:

Mike, thanks for the blog! Very thorough! Do you have any recommendations on floor mats? I ordered some on eBay that were supposed to be custom fit for my 68, but they weren’t close. $160 but they had free returns.

i initially wanted loop, but have possibly been steered to original type rubber. I can’t seem to track any down.

Attached are the ones that didn’t fit.

thanks!

Jeff

 

Jeff, 

 

CARS has repro Buick rubber floor mats. They are a nice set. I have a set in The Aqua Zephyr. You have to cut out the part that goes around the gas pedal. Easy to do with a box knife with a new blade or some sharp shears. 

 

I don't know of anyone who makes a carpeted mat set that fits like the rubber mats. I don't think GM (Buick at least) had carpeted mats in the 60's, but I may be wrong. 

Let me know if you need a trunk mat kit. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 9 months later...

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...