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Old 12-28-2012, 05:01 PM   #1
jowens1126
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Dash Removal drama......

Well since i have nothing else to do this week, I decided to dive in to a much dreaded project of mine. Removal of the dash so I can fix some issues behind there.

Well I read up on this as best I could find and it sounded like a pretty difficult job. After working on it now for 3 hours, I have the dash hanging. It seems like everytime I think I have it looses, I find another bolt or two, or three I need to remove.

My biggest issue right now is this. All I want to remove is the dash skin, but it seems like all the duct work behind it and a shit wad of electrical is still connected to the skin some how.

Here is what it looks like so far.






This is one of the reasons for going thru this torture. When I replaced the heater core last year, I could not get this control cable back on, there is a tiny access hole that you have to contort your hand to even feel this damn thing, much less get enough leverage to get it back on. Well at least thats fixed now. I can select hot or cold again.


I thought this was the last one holding the dash skin on, but apparently not.....I took alot of cuss words to get this one out too.




I didnt think this was going to be a multi day job, but apparently it is. Good thing I dont have anything to do for a few days.
Does anyone have any suggestions on places to look for hidden bolts or do I really HAVE to take the other stuff out too?
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:32 PM   #2
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I have done 2 of them. The first one I took out in many parts. I took out every bolt I saw and it came out in many parts. And a lot of the bolts go in from the back side. The 2nd one I did I took out as one unit and once you get the crap out of the way (glove box, radio,cluster. Trim) its only a handfull of bolts to take out as one part.
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:36 PM   #3
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I'm sure someone here is an absolute expert on this, (steve83 where are you). Pictures, diagrams anything.....


My other issue is, the P.O. Cut the door speaker leads somewhere under the dash and I couldn't find them. I wanted to pull it so I could find it and pull new leads. Also the whole dash was rattling a lot and the right side piece was broken, I wanted to do so repairs there. Also I need to replace one of my vacuum motors or the vacuum line. And just overall go thru the vent system and clean it. There's a gallon bucket of dirt and crap back there.
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Old 12-28-2012, 07:05 PM   #4
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Take lots of pictures and post them up. Ill be doing this when i cage the beast to run pillar bars. Id pull the stering colum out. You only need to unhook afew connections and one bolt at the universal. This should give you more room to move around and look around. Will only take about five more minutes. And i hope you have your battery diconnected for all of this.
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Old 12-28-2012, 07:06 PM   #5
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I have pulled the dashes on 87-91 era trucks about six times and installed them back with no issues. I have one dash that is going in its third vehicle right now. I just got done installing it. Takes me about 30 minutes to remove one and a little bit more to install. On the other hand, it took my girlfriend 6 hours to get one out. The thing she was doing, was overlooking some very teeny tiny things. I'm not familiar with removing 92-96 dashes since I never have had a reason too but... I guarantee you are overlooking something so small and insignificant looking you pass over it.
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Old 12-28-2012, 07:43 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Andrew James View Post
I have pulled the dashes on 87-91 era trucks about six times and installed
them back with no issues. I have one dash that is going in its third vehicle
right now. I just got done installing it. Takes me about 30 minutes to remove
one and a little bit more to install.
Wow, AJ, you're like some sorta expert or something. :) (no kidding)

I can do something like that on my '75 F150 but found the plastic dash in
the '90 F250 parts truck a whole 'nuther animal, there was always "some
other crap" attached to it. :/

{it went on and on and on and wasn't doing it with an eye toward re-installing it either}

Anyway, the best way to go about this is, IMO, treat it like a cool-puzzle
and for sure don't treat as a -timed event-.

Same goes for door and window mechanisms ...and a couple other things
the factory's "body people" engineered.

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Old 12-28-2012, 07:49 PM   #7
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That is a great way to think of it. Like a puzzle, makes it kinda fun lol.
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Old 12-28-2012, 08:42 PM   #8
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its definately a puzzle. I actually am enjoying the challenge. Ive never attempted anything like this before, but it seems like a good way to get to know my vehicle a little better. I have had little trouble so far, but damn, i must have taken out 50 + screws nuts, bolts and such. Im sure I could just continue and get it done, its just all the electrical crap thats mounted to the duct work that has me trippin. and i have taken so much apart, im just hoping i can remember how to get it all back in lol. I thought it was just 8 or 10 screws and a couple of other things when i started. boy was i wrong. lol. I didnt think it was such a big deal so i didnt take enough pictures.
I do think im ok at this point though. Ive gone to far to give up now, and i dont think I can get all that duct work secured again without getting it completely out and seperating the dash skin so i can see what the hell i need to do. There is so much dirt and crud back there its amazing, almost 20 years worth of accumulated filth. I have to get all that out of there. One things for sure, when I get it all out and put back together again, I will have learned a whole hell of a lot about this truck.
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Old 12-28-2012, 08:45 PM   #9
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Another good thing, I have found several things that are broken that i didnt know were broken. More to add to my list of parts. Just wish I had everything while I have it all apart.
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Old 12-28-2012, 10:08 PM   #10
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Here goes.

So first off, you need to remove the dash pad that is above the radio and the glovebox opening. I see from your last picture that you haven't pulled it yet. It is held on with 7 10mm nuts from the back side. That will expose three other screws that thread in from the back. Two around the radio hole and one buried deep in there above the glove box.




The most difficult one is the one that screws in from the back above the glove box. It actually comes in from inside the ductwork. The way you get to it is by loosening the 4 bolts that hold the big metal steering column bracket to the body and completely remove the the screw from the bracket that holds the right (passenger) side of the dash to the body. Then you can swing the dash out and stick your arm behind the dash with a 1/4" ratchet, 6" extension and socket to get to the screw from inside the duct.

Also you will have to swing the dash out from both directions to get the screws that hold the skin to the ducting on the sides near the door hinges. Here you can see I have swung the right side of the dash out to both get to the screw through the duct and the right most screw holding the skin to the ducting near the door hinge.


I made comments on the pictures in this album that should give you some good tips. Album

Also, be sure to inspect this tab on the top right side of the dash when you get your skin off. Mine was broken and causing the dash to squeak like mad. Also every truck I took apart at the junkyard was broken as well. Seems like a pretty failure prone place in the ducting.


I built it back up with ABS plastic and MEK.


This is what you will be left with once the skin is removed. None of the wiring will come out with the skin.


Finally, I would highly recommend to go ahead and completely remove the (or drop down) the steering column. Looks like you've got it mostly removed. Pulling it on out is not that big a deal and will make your life much easier.
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Old 12-29-2012, 10:01 AM   #11
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You guys sure do make easy jobs harder.

It comes out as a unit.

Take the trim out and drop the column, electrical connections, etc, and pull the whole thing out. Don't try to take it apart piece by piece or you'll be there forever.

I always loved gravy dash work-- 1990's and early 2000's F-series truck and Excursion/Expedition heaters are a favorite. Depending on model book-time is anywhere from 6 to 9 hours; I can do the whole thing in about 3 1/2. Did a '99 F-150 a few weeks ago at home: heater core, heater hoses and radiator hoses. Picked it up in the morning and had it back to him at lunchtime. Easy money.

Enjoy
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Old 12-29-2012, 11:31 AM   #12
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WOW! Thank you so much KAWAMATT2! That is EXACTLY what I was looking for!
I had a feeling there might be hidden screws behind the dash pad section. I started removing the nuts for that last night before it got dark, but didnt finish getting it off. Im pretty sure I have everything else off. I will see if i can get it without completely removing the steering wheel. There are enough broken pieces in the steering wheel already, and I pretty much need to tear it down completely and rebuild it. But that will have to wait till i can find a good bit of parts from a junk yard. Most I have found were worse off than mine was.

Yea that piece is broken on mine too, probly the source of my rattles as well.

Thanks again! That is EXACTLY what I needed! FSB RULES!
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Old 12-29-2012, 12:12 PM   #13
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For your RH dash lower bracket (repair kit/ procedure):

http://fullsizebronco.com/forum/show....php?p=2753543

Read post 64.

Credit and thanks to miesk5 for posting.
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Old 12-29-2012, 04:47 PM   #14
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Yeah, yer doin' that all backwords. I have a few spare dashes out as one piece from the trucks I've scrapped, and never had too big an issue.

Now the C-17 instrument panel, there is a bitch to work around in...

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Old 12-29-2012, 04:48 PM   #15
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(steve83 where are you).
Busy.



But SMN is always there! Just look around...

The easiest & quickest way to remove the dash skin is to remove the dash, then remove the skin from the ducts. The ducts are actually the structure of the dash. I let Cody talk me into pulling JUST the skin off his dash (partly because I had never tried it), and it was a nightmare. I'll never do that again.



If you have a plastic tab beside the R door hinge, it's even more logical to pull the dash.

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Old 12-29-2012, 05:19 PM   #16
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Steve, do you have one of those right side ductwork tab kits left? I definately need it.
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:29 PM   #17
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Read those captions - I only bought that one, and took measurements so you can make your own. AFAIK, Ford quit making them years ago, so the stock is dwindling...
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:36 PM   #18
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Success! Couldnt have been that hard, I didnt cut myself one time.


This is a must have tool for a project like this!


Heres one problem.


and another......


and another.....



and another....
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:38 PM   #19
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My Bezel is shot too, its been in and out so many times theres not much of it left.
I seriously need a trip to the junk yard.

Is the duct work only secured to the vehicle by that one bolt on the right side and the 2 across the bottom?

I think im going to go ahead and pull the entire front duct system out. I need to do that mod for the right side anyway.
I hate all the nasty mess under there. Tomorrow I can chase down my speaker wire problem, or run a new one.
I have no idea how im going to fix the rattling issues.

Anyone have a feel for how much a good dash and duct system would be from a junk yard?

Weird thing is, I can secure the steering wheel and it will still run and drive without all that stuff connected.
Freaked my wife the hell out. she didnt know what i was doing the last couple of days.
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:59 PM   #20
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My Bezel is shot too, its been in and out so many times theres not much of it left.
...
Freaked my wife the hell out. she didnt know what i was doing the last couple of days.
So "Bezel" is the nickname you use for yours? Yes, that's in the quote thread now.









Most bezel breaks are easy to fix:



This one is a little harder:

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