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Bare naked headliner [89 Caravan], is it fiberglas? Seal it? Discard?

Discussion in 'Minivans · Pacifica' started by ttgg89, Sep 23, 2017.

  1. ttgg89

    ttgg89 Member

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    Hello, the fabric was completely shot on this headliner, I pulled it all off [with liner in place] then removed the tacky glue residue with the vacuum at the carwash.

    I was trying to get around not really dealing with it right now but still have the benefits of the insulation. However, I notice it flakes off dust which I presume is fiberglas? Can't be good for the ol' lungs.

    I'm dealing with it again as I am working on the windshield. Removing the door garnish revealed some more of the old glue [see pic]. I wondered it there was something I could spray or brush on the headliner to more or less seal it without removal.

    The alternative would be to pull it out and discard, start with some modern materials at a later date. Can't really get into it right now, I'd have no place to store it, and once it's out starting with fresh materials seems like a more appealing route.

    The van has been gutted to use as a work vehicle. Leaving the bare headliner in seemed like a good idea to keep its insulation properties. Not so sure now though.

    thanks for any thoughts or info! IMG_0354.JPG IMG_0358.JPG IMG_0352.JPG
     
  2. RalphP

    Level 2 Supporter

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    It's not really that much or that hard to recover.

    If you don't, I'd at least pull it long enough to shellac it (or otherwise seal it).

    While off, you can do a Dynamat- type insulation up there and double the effectiveness.

    RwP
     
  3. CudaPete

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    You could probably just paint it to stop the dust.
     
  4. ttgg89

    ttgg89 Member

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    Thanks for your input RalphP, it's Sept. 24 and I have a half dozen other severely pressing issues with this van before New England winter drops. Like I said, I can't rebuild this right now.

    Shellac sounds good though, I'll investigate brushing on with it in place.

    Whoa, this sounds good, as in paint it with anything? Like free latex house paint from craigslist, miscellaneous rattle cans I can find at the thrift store, or whatever?

    I just want to seal off the dust that's coming off of it. The van is a gutted work truck, the headliner will not be recovered in fabric, ever. I've seen some cool pics of grass reeds installed, maybe something like that over the insulation at a much later time.

    rsz_grass_reed_headliner.jpg .
     
  5. CudaPete

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    I would think spray woud be easier
     
  6. dana44

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    Gently pull it out, take a wire brush to it to remove the foam rubber dust, then, if you want to, take it to an upholsterer and get it recovered with a new material (it's material and foam rubber backing), or spray or brush paint it to keep the surface from continuing to deteriorate from normal heat and wind (while driving). I have replaced three headliners in my vehicles over the past 20 years, brand doesn't matter, they all break down eventually from the heat and age. Don't throw it out, new ones are super expensive (most of the time), but do spend about a day to remove, seal, let dry, and replace, they do help with internal temps.
     
  7. RalphP

    Level 2 Supporter

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    That's a shame; the fabric also adds to the noise isolation and the thermal insulation (not a SIGNIFICANT amount, but some.)

    If you're not doing that, then sealing it with shellac or some kind of brush on paint (I'd be leery of rattlecan paint, but if you don't care the color, stuff from Craigslist should be OK if it's low VOC) would be indicated.

    (Seal it now; when you finally get to this item, #193,750,392 on your ToDo list :) you can then just reapply the foam and fabric combo.)

    RwP
     
  8. ttgg89

    ttgg89 Member

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    It occurred to me with the liner in place a 1/2 size paint roller might be a good approach, at least to try out in an area. Some kind of thick paint/other that will roll on nicely and seal it. That way I wouldn't have to worry about any over spray in the vehicle, could slop up the edges real good with a brush.

    Oil based house paint, thicker better than latex for this?

    check out the pic beneath the following text:
    I would put time/effort into this before going the fabric route. This van is hybrid ghetto/desert rat, nothing fancy:)

    The old dust is gone [thin strip in pic removed today], spent some grueling time at the car wash vacuum after I cut and pulled out the liner, went over it a bunch of times. That's part of the reason why painting it in place seems feasible, it's basically ready to go.
     
  9. dana44

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    Yes, I would go with oil base instead of water base latex, that way moisture doesn't collect on the back side and cause water bubbles. It will also seal the cardboard better.
     
  10. GLHS60

    GLHS60 Well-Known Member

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    I've sprayed them with rubberized rockguard in a can.

    It leaves a nice finish.

    Thanks
    Randy
     
  11. ttgg89

    ttgg89 Member

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    Thanks, sounds good. Where is the cardboard? The face looks like some kind of fiberglass to me [hence the flaking/dust], I pulled down an edge today to see what the backside looks like. Textured firm board of some kind, looked pretty good/solid from what I could see [not flaking like the other side].
     
  12. ttgg89

    ttgg89 Member

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    Ahh, interesting! Thanks, I will look into this, but finding a can of it to use a paint roller with the liner still in the van.
     
  13. dana44

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    All the headliner boards I have seen have been molded fiberboard, or cardboard, not fiberglass or plastic, but they could be that kind of material I guess. It's not the board itself that falls apart, it is the foam rubber that basically disintegrates from the heat.
     
  14. ttgg89

    ttgg89 Member

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    On my '89 Caravan to the best of my knowledge it looks and acts like fiberglass, especially the way it's letting off dust. Hence my desire to glop some paint on there. It's not glue/foam residue that's blowing off [I sucked all that brown crumbly stuff off at the carwash], it's tiny specs/strands of fiberglass. I looked at the backing again today, not what I initially thought. It's a thin screen of some kind that the fiberglass is attached to.

    IMG_0798.JPG IMG_0795.JPG
     
  15. dana44

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    Son of a gun, it sure does look like fiberglass. Yes, oil based paint is best for that to seal it and prevent fibers from getting everywhere (itchy stuff), and leave it at that. Once sealed up, you can decide to do the foam headliner covering like original, using spray glue, or leave it painted.
     
  16. ttgg89

    ttgg89 Member

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    Things have taken a turn. I have to have my windshield taken out to have some surface rust repaired to fix a leak. My garage is helping me out working with a retired glass tech who works cheap and only does a few jobs here and there. No way do I want that raw edge of fiberglass flapping and spewing dust in his face while he's working.

    So, I'll know better tomorrow but I believe I'm just going to remove it and probably discard. It saw 25 summers in the Southwest, I believe the expression is "toasted". Edges are de-laminating in places, various tears and weak areas throughout, etc.

    Just now thinking I can have fun with this as I get to it. This is a funky work van. Maybe experiment with various materials/techniques starting with just the cab [like that bamboo/grass reed picture earlier in the thread].

    Also I would then be able to remove the rear electric window actuator cables, I swapped over to manual clasp.

    I believe I will be relieved to have this shedding/shredding mess out of the van.

    Thanks, someone mentioned the Dynamat route earlier, which might conform to the ceiling better. This foam board may be useful in other areas as well, I have gutted the rear; all plastic paneling and seats are gone. The ceiling may end up bare metal for a while until I can get to it, which is a lot better than random inhalations of fiberglass dust.
     
  17. voiceofstl

    voiceofstl Well-Known Member

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    off topic: I had a 79 malibu In took in to fix/replace the headliner for a $100. wow super cheap, I found out why. I went to pick it up and saw they pulled the entire headliner and "board" down and used red vynil that match ed the interior and glued it directly to the roof.LOL it looked good and even gained some heard room, but did it get hot in the summer. The car was black \. LOL
     

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