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Making a custom insert so I can redo helm electronics

Old 04-18-2008, 10:03 AM
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Default Making a custom insert so I can redo helm electronics

At some point I'd like to change out the electronics mounted on the helm of my Trophy 1952. Seems like the best way would be to cut out the entire dash mount area and cover it with a custom-sized insert, then start fresh. Do any of you know of a supplier that could build a good looking plastic insert from a pattern I would supply? Maybe even make the openings in it for the electronics.

Thanks for the help.
Old 04-18-2008, 07:11 PM
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Default RE: Making a custom insert so I can redo helm electronics

These guys can do it.
http://buckwoodcraft.com/Default.htm
Old 04-19-2008, 08:37 AM
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Default Re: Making a custom insert so I can redo helm electronics

I wouldn't cut out the entire dash mount area, leave what you can for strength. Cover the existing holes with a panel, then only cut out what you need too.
Old 04-19-2008, 04:04 PM
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Default RE: Making a custom insert so I can redo helm electronics

Take a look at my website here:

http://www.marine-electronics-review...nt-marine.html

for some tips on exactly what you want to do.

Old 04-19-2008, 06:14 PM
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Default RE: Making a custom insert so I can redo helm electronics

I installed an entire Furuno system in my HS after the raymarine gear was ripped out by the previous owner(prior to repo). I used aluminium and had it powder coated, turned out nice and all new electronics were laid out, mounting holes machined and screw holes counter sunk etc., then finally coated. Here's the finished product......

Old 04-20-2008, 04:35 AM
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Default Re: Making a custom insert so I can redo helm electronics

I just did this exact job by myself with a piece of Starboard hard pastic. Looks great, and is solid as can be. Job was easy and cheap too! I agree, only cut out as much as you need for the new stuff, but go for it.
Old 04-20-2008, 05:25 AM
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Default Re: Making a custom insert so I can redo helm electronics

i did my dash by making a drawing and have a local machine shop cut it and then got it powder coated. it came out nicely. the advantage of starboard over aluminum is that you don't need to finish it (e.g. powder coat) and it is easier to cut yourself. but aluminum is a lot stronger for the same thickness, which is important when there are a lot of big holes in the panel (crowded dash). also having a machine shop cut the holes etc, everything will be square & lined up exactly the way you want it. here is my dash:

[img]../photos/get-photo.asp?photoid=22117[/img]

another option, which i used for a side switch panel is a websitewww.frontpanelexpress.com . it is totally web-based, you never even talk to a person (unless you want to). you download the free software, layout your panel and then there's a menu pick to 'order' the panel. type in your credit card info and the panel shows up a week later. here is my switch panel:

[img]../photos/get-photo.asp?photoid=26645[/img]
Old 04-20-2008, 08:30 AM
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Default Re: Making a custom insert so I can redo helm electronics

I'm building some panels and doors with Starboard Plastic, and I'm amazed how easy it is to work. I get a near mirror-smooth edge with a jigsaw!

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