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Hi, I wonder whether anybody can tell me if I can remove the bits and pieces storage box, or tray thingy, from the centre console upper surround, where the clock is located.

Here is the piece that I am thinking of buying:
enter image description here

As one can see there was a sat nav unit fitted, and now removed. The surround would be perfect for my car, but can I remove the remaining bit of the black panel and fit the complete black panel from my existing surround ?
enter image description here

I am hoping that it is possible to remove the section with in the red box in my existing upper console surround, and just fit it back into the walnut surround.

My question is - can I do this ? Does the clock surround and the bits and bobs storage box just unclip ?

Pierre3.

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Yes it does.

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Hi there, thanks for your reply. I have been told that the clock surround is moulded into the whole surround, and therefore it won't come, but that in itself wouldn't be an issue, because I want to keep the clock. The bit that I can't figure out is the small panel that is fluted under the clock. That piece appears to be clipped into the storage box [for want of a better description] section. i am guessing that this must pull off.

If the lower, fluted piece is removed does that leave the bits and bobs box just clipped into the surround ? When I look at the upper surround that had sat nav fitted the clock section seems to be one piece, moulded into the panel. The hole under the fluting is apparent in both panels but, on the one that has sat nav the flutes seem to be moulded in, whereas in the black one the long panel sits over the hole, and the panel seems to be removeable.

I can't see how you could take off the longer panel and fit it to the one that had sat nav. I suspect that with the sat nav surround there is a different type of bits and bobs storage box, but I can't find one on the internet if it is indeed a different item than the one in the black surround.

Any ideas would be appreciated, as usual.

Pierre3.

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This https://parts.jaguarlandroverclassic.com/fhm100320lnf-bin-facia-console-stowage.html is the one you need if you are fitting the storage box into a car that originally had the sat nav. The long panel with the grille in it for the cabin temperature sensor is separate to the box.

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Hi Richard, thanks a lot for posting this information. It gives me a decent bit of info to follow. I didn't know the correct description for the parts ! Now, at least I can do a trawl through the internet and see what I can find.

Two years ago I actually found a brand new, old stock, window switch pack front. It was a bit pricey but it was very good nick.

Pierre3.

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I think that I may have struck lucky. I have come across a US website who say that they have some used ones in stock, the correct ones for the sat nav centre console upper surround. I am waiting for an answer from them to confirm this, which looks like I may be in luck. At least, I can then buy one of the fairly numerous sat nav upper surrounds that are for sale on various P38 breakers ebay sites in the UK.

Again, thanks for the information that you gave me, Richard.

Pierre3.

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Wow, keep me in the loop please if the have some LHD ones, wether normal or walnut ones.

Now, Richard was very kind and gave the short answer, to spare you the drama of pestering behind the console. I can give you a fuller picture, and is a bit grim ... whoever designed all that junk was clearly missing a class or two at Engineering, or was simply told "do with what you got" ... here it goes
The entire assy is very flimsy, poor 90s plastic which becomes brittle and easily damaged. The fitting lugs, you might have already one or two broken already. You need to remove the binnacle surround as well for a proper job.
The tray it is a separate part, but is fixed with small metal washers to plastic pins. Obviously is a one time fit job, as to remove you need to very delicately "twist" the washers out of the pins, while they dig into the plastic of it.
Is a matter of time and they break, guaranteed. Will look through my junk pile to find one and make pictures.
The "strip" that covers the air sensor is similarly fitted, and equally crappy. Its regular shape makes it easy to glue back on however.
The air sensor is located through two very very long and thin screws to two very very long and thin "locating pins" to which the sensor goes attached. Screw one screw a turn too much and you are ... screwed, the plastic breaks and the sensor dances around its housing. Same story for the clock, sans the screws.
Both sensor and clock are on a separate housing, which fortunately only "clicks" into the console. Push too much on the clock and it breaks its locating pegs and "falls" into the car.
All in all, a great design and even greater manufacturing.
Of all the weak areas of the P38 (and they are many), the interior quality is at utilitarian cars from a decade earlier. Pity.

Now, if you only want to put a navi/display/tablet in a console which has none, it is easy to ditch the tray, and cut the air cover grill sensor to new shape. If you find a navi console, the better.
If you need to go bigger, it can be trimmed, I think Marty and others have done it, but you do need an outlet for the air sensor anyway.

Again, if you come across anything interesting please do not forget me, I am always looking for a walnut LHD, tray or navi I do not mind, I can work around it :-)

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Interesting information in your post, Leolito. I was hoping that the news might have been better !!

I have got a sat nav style console surround from Charles Nicholas, at CN4X4SSS. I made sure to ensure that all the lugs are present as most of them on Fleabay usually have one or two lugs missing. He did get back to me to say that he had a couple of storage bins that fit in place of the sat nav, but I had already been in touch with British Parts of Utah, who have a couple of new ones in stock, and I have bought one of these. Hopefully, the spring washer thingies will be included.

I am replacing my black surround because [a] the rest of my console and switch pack panel are all walnut; and [b] the surface of the black panel has gone a bit sticky and can't be cleaned properly. It's like polish has broken down the surface, making it tacky.

So I will need to remove and refit the clock and the air sensor.

Do you happen to know whether the two items are on detachable plugs ? At least, if I can just remove my current surround with the clock and air sensor still in place then I can work on it in the kitchen [with either a cup of tea - or a bottle of gin].

I am not going to put anything different into the sat nav space as I already have a fold-away DAB radio which works very well. Fitting the sat nav storage box means that I don't need the cover that runs the full width from the air sensor, under the clock, which is a relief.

I think I know exactly what the spring washer thingies are, I have seen them in lots of plastic items such are toys and computer parts. They are a PITA !

If the surround is removed from the car is it any easier to dismantle the bits that I need ?

Lastly, send Charles Nicholas a text message [or ring him] or swnd a Whatsapp message to see if he has any LHD surrounds. I'm sure that I saw some for sale on Pic-clic, for sale in Italy, when I was looking for a good, undamaged RHD one. I will send a PM with Charles's details.

Pierre3.

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Pierre … You‘re very lucky having found the part new! It took me ages to find a used one. Only after I found it, I did a search for the corresponding wooden console, as the later ones were the preferred choice. Charles is a very friendly and helpful guy!
If You don‘t have it already I would look for the center console sidewings with wooden top strip. There are versions around, where the side wings have two parts, the wooden strip is bolted with five or six screws. Mostly all leather covered side wings and a few plastic ones are this version, whereas most plastic ones are one piece. What is Your interior color (seats and carpet)?

The swap of the sensor, clock and switches is easy and done perfectly with a Gin (or Whisky in me case) at the desktop.

Leolito I might have the black genuine surround in my parts shelf if it is any help for You? I fully agree on the bad design of the interior. It was made with fast assembly not with repair on their mental agenda or design brief! LHD ones are quite available on continental classified ads pages and usually sell for around 100-150. But wooden ones are made of „unobtanium“ and sell for a fortune (I bought mine for 250 plus postage from france, but I searched very long and got offered sometimes very bad scratched ones for much more money). You just have to search very long. I posted a search query in many FB P38 and LR parts groups and finally got, what I wanted.
There‘s a bad seller on ebay who asks ridiculous prices and is personally someone, whom I try to avoid.

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BTW if I would have a rhd I would try to get my hands on the japanese (genuine/factory) version of the center console, different layout of the buttons and integrated screen in the more convenient place at the top of the console.
enter image description here

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KCR, that Japanese surround is pretty mad looking ! I keep having to go back and look at it, and I still don't know whether or not I like it.

The interior of my car, a 2001 DHSE, is Burr Walnut and Lightstone leather, and it is Monte Carlo blue. But I would say that the trim, Burr Walnut, is not genuine wood, it is printed ABS plastic, I think. It looks perfectly good, and it polishes up well, and is easy to keep clean.

The lower picture in my original post shows the main parts of the centre console, the switch pack and the rear ashtray flip-up cover, and the transmission tunnel side panels are all Walnut. So that just left the upper surround to be replaced. As you mentioned in your post, the side panel in ABS plastic are all one piece, held in place with two screws along the bottom.

I quite like talking to Charlie Nicholas, as you say he is quite a nice guy.

The one thing that I need to do now, is the machine polish my bonnet to remove some Sonax CC36 ceramic polish. The car has been treated, by me, all over, but the one mistake [well, maybe one of several] I made was to not thoroughly check the surface of the bonnet after using a clay bar. It was only after the second coating of ceramic polish dried that I realised that I could feel a very slight coarseness across the surface of the paint. I have to use a polishing machine that I have, to take off the ceramic finish 🤣 . Oh well, at least the rest of the car is good.

Pierre3.

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Do you happen to know whether the two items are on detachable plugs ?

Pierre, you can unplug all upper switches (including lights), the clock power/bulb, ans air sensor, and remove the console as a whole. Depending on your audio system you might take the radio as well in its cradle. Then you can work with a bottle handy! :-)

...the surface of the black panel has gone a bit sticky and can't be cleaned properly...
The plastic surface deteriorates like many other cars from that era (and some more recent as well), and it cannot be cleaned or repaired - sanding and repainting with a quality plastics paint is the only solution.

Kurt! I have not forgotten you, still need to address the topic of the luggage case!
I actually would like a nice one, because mine was literally broken (some dork tried to remove it forgetting there is a retaining lug underneath the instrument binnacle surround), the one in the other donor car is stained from a leaking rearview mirror, and someone "enlarged" a switch hole to fit the LPG switch.
I have a nice one, but is a special edition 25th year or something, with a plate, and dont want to mess it up.

I have a good guy that makes wood type finish, and the results are pretty good, but he has not gotten the right shade of "brown" to match the original factory look.

I do agree on the console "cheeks", and must absolutely be on leather and wood ... gorgeous.

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Hi Leolito, sorry, had a look at the center console in my parts shelf, sadly it is from a late one (facelift), where the surface peels and one tab is broken. Sorry mate.
The safety box is now in New Zealand ... due to Coronoia lockdown it took more than two month to arrive ...
But I can ask a german breaker, who specialised in P38s?

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Pierre do You have any tips how to polish the ABS/wood?
Hints are highly appreciated!

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I had the awful sticky finish on everything and when it was all off the car to do the matrix O rings my wife washed them in hot soapy water and used a washing up scourer, in the UK a sponge with a plastic scourer on one side, and a tooth brush for the nooks and cranies. Took 3 goes but it all came off. I then used a back to black cream on them and they are lovely now. My plan was to paint them but now unnecessary.

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Correct, the tacky/gummy peeling actually falls off and reveals the "normal" plastic underneath.

For the "wood" parts, I use normal car polish, the parts ones I can't remove I do it by hand with a microfiber rag, the ones I managed to take out, directly with the polishing machine. With the machine comes much better, most scratches and scuffs from use simply disappear...

Kurt, don't worry, the case was eventually for a friend who as you see is not much in need :-)
Other parts from now I will not go crazy for, I have other projects to finish first. Thanks!