AeroCarParts.net Custom Dash kits in Wood, Carbon Fibre, Brushed Aluminium, and Custom Colours, it's even available in Camouflage!
Far too often when we customize our cars and trucks we only think of things like spoilers, wheels, and performance parts, when the part of our vehicle we interact with the most is the dash. If you want to personalize your ride to make it your own, why not start with what you see when you’re behind the wheel, and a great way to do it is with a custom dash kit. Choose from wood, carbon fiber, brushed aluminum, custom colors, and even camouflage.
Don't think these are some poorly fitting, cheesy appliques that will peel and fall off after a few days. All of the dash kits we offer are made of quality materials, including real wood for some applications. Each dash trim piece is precision designed and cut for a perfect fit. If you have some wood grain factory trim, like on a shift knob for example, and you want to complete the wood grain look, we offer kits that can perfectly match the OEM color and pattern. And each piece is treated with a clear protective coating to protect against UV rays and prevent fading.
With a wood dash kit you will find it extremely hard to keep your attention fixed on the road ahead because your eyes won't be able to stop looking at the dash. Aero CarParts offers you to choose a wood dash kit in our comprehensive online catalog. Express your personal style with an elegant kit made to fit perfectly over top of your existing factory parts.
At Aero Car Parts, we specialize in many different types of automotive dash kits and dash trim kits to enhance and dress up your dash board with lots of different finishes and colors to choose from. We offer dash kits for cars, trucks and SUV's. At Aero Car Parts we supply and install dash kits of the highest quality and appearance. Wood, brushed metal, carbon fibre, checkered tones, wasp honeycomb or solid colors. Aero's kits are custom made for any vehicle model, make and year.
Dash Kits: Trim, Sprays or Wraps? The Pros & Cons: A Comparative Breakdown
When it comes to modifying the interior trim of your car, truck or SUV there are a number of options for you to choose from but what choice you make depends on your goals and your comfort level with each product. As the sub-title of article lists, there are three basic interior dash trim mods that are commonly available on the market and they are as follows: custom-fit dash kits, sprays and vinyl wraps. Although there are other kinds of custom dashboard modifications such as fiberglass, molded dashboards we won't get into those here since those are beyond the ability of most enthusiasts both in terms of costs and because they require specialized shops and equipment.
Although it may seem like we have narrowed the field down to a choice of three different interior mods the truth isn't quite so simple. Sure, you can choose a dash kit a spray paint or a vinyl wrap but which kind will you choose? Do you want an Rdash vinyl trim kit or a thick, polyurethane coated wood grain or carbon fiber dash kit? If you choose a spray on mod, will you go with a simple paint like Duplicolor or will you choose Plastidip for a one-of-a-kind matte finish? And, finally, if you decide to wrap your dash, what type of film will you choose? Rwrap, Hexis, 3M, Oracal...the list is virtually endless. In this brief article we will briefly cover the pros and cons of each technique so you can make a better decision when it comes time to customize your dashboard.
Dash kits of any kind are a great way to quickly and easily personalize your interior. They offer a number of unique benefits over other methods of interior modification such as:
- Relatively straightforward installation.
- Requires little to no customization and can be used right out of the box.
- Available in an infinite variety of patterns and finishes.
Of course, as with any product, there are also some disadvantages to choosing a dash kit rather than painting or wrapping your dash. Some of the cons are:
- May clash with existing interior trim.
- Will not completely cover all areas of the dashboard and interior.
- May require sanding or abrading of some surfaces to adhere.
Spray Paint and Plastidip
Spray paints and Plastidip allow you to get a true custom look and have the following benefits:
- Complete coverages of all interior panels and trim.
- A wide variety of colors are available.
- Cost is relatively low.
The most notable disadvantages are:
- Requires removal of trim pieces.
- Prior experience is recommended to obtain the best results.
- Vehicle cannot be used for a number of days as primer and paint cure or during application of multiple coats of Plastidip.
Vinyl Dash Wraps
The final technique for interior customization that we will consider is the vinyl dash wrap. Some of the distinct advantages of choosing vinyl wraps over the other two options discussed are:
- There is an almost limitless variety of patterns, colors and finishes available as well as custom printed options.
- Works well over existing trim and does not require removal of dash components or panels.
- Can be removed without causing permanent damage to the trim.
Notable cons of using a wrap are:
- Some skill is required to work with vinyl on curves and concave surfaces.
- It may be difficult to estimate the amount of film needed and one can end up with too much or too little to complete the job.
- May require sanding or abrading of some surfaces to adhere.
Now that you have a better hold on what to expect you can consider yourself an informed consumer so all that's left is to choose the right mod for your ride. Still have questions? Give us a call today and we will be happy to answer any questions you have regarding your new dash kit.
Are Real Wood Dash Kits Better Than Synthetic Wood Kits?
When it comes to interior dash kits, real wood and synthetic wood both offer distinct advantages. The good news is, you have a choice.
Many people think that the genuine material always is better than materials imitating other materials. If this is your view of things, obviously you might consider Real Wood to be better than Synthetic Wood. You are in distinguished company - manufacturers of luxury automobiles like Jaguar, Cadillac and Lexus share your view. They think, as you probably do, that there is no way that a synthetic material can match the feel, the depth of color and that the imperfections that are inevitable in real wood give a life to the surface that cannot be imitated. Installing a real wood dash kit and wood steering wheel can also be a way to honor the fine craftsmanship of the cabinetmakers who have provided luxury car interiors for the world's most prestigious automakers for well over a century.
Changes in Real Wood are Inevitable
Even if the real wood is encased in plastic materials it cannot be completely isolated from the environment. This means that real wood absorbs moisture in wet weather, which makes it expand, and dries out in hot and dry weather, which makes it contract. In spite of the UV protective layer, it is inevitable that real wood is bleached and develops cracks. To lovers of real wood, this is only proof that the material is alive and natural. They consider the aging of the surface as a feature that adds to the beauty of the wood surface. A word of warning though: Convertibles offer a very hard environment for real wood. The material is much more exposed to the elements in an open car, and is prone to age faster than even the most enthusiastic lovers of real wood deem acceptable. If you honor traditional car interior design and prefer natural materials, if you consider the inevitable changes that take place in natural wood over time as a bonus and not as a drawback, the about 30% higher price of Real Wood is worth paying. Natural wood is obviously your preferred material, as you understand and appreciate the particular feeling and style that only natural wood can give.The high price of real wood comes not only from the price of real wood being higher than the price of plastic materials. The manual process needed to choose pieces of veneer that don't show any imperfections, the fairly high percentage of veneer discarded due to imperfections, contribute to the higher price.
Synthetic Wood Always Looks the Same
For most people, it is very hard to tell the difference between dash kits made in real and synthetic wood. Modern synthetic wood materials are so similar to the original that it takes the eye of a true expert to tell them apart when the materials have been covered with the same kind of protective polyurethane layer. In most cases, the only way to tell a synthetic wood dash kit from a real wood dash kit is the price. If you find an extremely cheap dash kit that the seller claims is made in real wood, it is probably a false statement. Claims that sound too good to be true usually are. The synthetic wood material does not change its color over time, and it will not crack, even if it is used for door sills. It will always look as if it is new. To real wood enthusiasts this feature makes synthetic wood look dead and artificial, while other people think it is one of the major advantages of synthetic wood. The physical properties are slightly different for real wood and synthetic wood dash kits. Real wood cannot be made quite as pliable as synthetic materials, and is slightly more difficult to install, but for practical purposes the difference is negligible.
Other differences are more real:
- As most cars with wood trim have synthetic wood installed by the factory, it is easier to match synthetic wood to the trim installed by the manufacturer, making for a more original option total look.
- The price is, as mentioned above, around 30% lower for synthetic wood kits.
In the end, the choice between real and synthetic wood is a personal choice that is determined by you own priorities, preferences and feelings. All modern dash kits offer good value for money.
Vinyl Wrap vs. Plasti-Dip | Advantages of Vinyl Wraps & Plasti-Dip
Protecting your car’s paint job is a great way to safeguard your investment, and there are several options available to you for achieving that goal. If you like your car’s factory paint job, the careful application of wax on a regular schedule is the tried-and-true method. Recently, clear vinyl wraps have progressed to the point where they now provide an attractive and useful alternative to wax.
If you don’t need to keep your car’s factory color, or you’re interested in a new look anyway, vinyl wraps are available in several styles and dozens of colors. Another popular option is Plasti-Dip, which has gained a decent foothold in the car customization market.
Which choice is best for you? We’ll take a look at each option in depth so you can make the best decision for your car, your wallet and yourself.
What Is a Vinyl Wrap?
Vinyl is a popular option for car exterior customization because of its ease-of-installation, low cost compared to a full paint job and the possibilities it offers regarding finished products. Sheets of the vinyl film are cut and stretched to fit each body panel precisely. The sheets have an adhesive applied to one side, so there are no additional materials involved.
All you need are the right tools and some patience — or give us a call and you can trust we will do a good job.
What Is Plasti-Dip?
While the concept of Plasti-Dip may remind you of a product from a late-night television infomercial, it has, in fact, become a popular and successful after-market solution for car exterior modification. Originally, Plasti-Dip was marketed in spray cans to provide a rubberized, waterproof coating on just about anything you could imagine.
Eventually, its manufacturers developed a specific formulation to be used on automobiles. As you can imagine, painting an entire car by hand one spray can at a time is just asking for a repetitive stress injury, not to mention a solid week of your life down the drain.
Instead, Plasti-Dip products are also packaged by the gallon in buckets and designed to work with a standard paint spray gun.
Which Should You Choose?
Making a choice between Plasti-Dip vs. vinyl film won’t take a lot of effort. There are always several factors to consider, but just a little bit of research will make the decision pretty easy. The tough part will be deciding what to do with all the money you saved by not forging ahead with the traditional paint job.
We’ll take a look at each aspect of this debate and give you an idea of who comes out ahead.
To most of us, the bottom line is the most important factor. We’ll argue later on that there’s a more important consideration, but we certainly respect the weight cost will carry in the final decision. So how do these two products compare on cost?
The vinyl film will be more expensive, but if you don’t trust yourself to apply the Plasti-Dip, the labor cost of taking it to a professional shop will close the gap pretty quickly.
A good vinyl wrap installation from a reputable shop will be in the $1,500 ballpark, give or take material and labor costs. The larger the car, the more time for installation and the more vinyl film required, of course.
The raw materials for a Plasti-Dip will only run a hundred bucks or so, but that isn’t the end of the story. To apply the protection spray, you’ll need a few special tools: A spray gun, a hose and the necessary taping supplies to combat over-spray. If you don’t have access to these tools, that will add expense to the project — and what are you going to do with a spray gun after you’ve finished the job?
Both a vinyl wrap and Plasti-Dip will be less expensive than a conventional paint job, which explains why they are the two options most commonly compared. If anyone is seriously deciding between a five-figure paint job and a vinyl wrap or Plasti-Dip, they’ve already decided money is not a factor and will lean toward the paint job anyway.
On the other hand, those of us with limited car mod budgets will appreciate the lighter price tag and the resale value investment offered by both vinyl wraps and Plasti-Dip.
We would strongly suggest that no matter which solution you choose, you take your car to a professional. But if you’re a confident do-it-yourselfer or are working on a project car that doesn’t have to be perfect, both Plasti-Dip and vinyl film are possible to apply yourself.So which is easier?
From an equipment perspective, you’re more likely to have all of the tools you need to apply the vinyl film: Squeegee, heat gun, utility knife, magnets and another person. Even if you’re missing one of these tools, they aren’t all that expensive to procure. In a pinch, you could use a hair dryer instead of a heat gun.
To apply the Plasti-Dip, you will need a spray gun, a hose, taping supplies and a whole bunch of tape and paper to protect your windows and other areas from over-spray. The only substitute for the spray gun is ordering the Plasti-Dip in aerosol cans, but as we mentioned before, that would not be the most ergonomic option.
Additionally, the Plasti-Dip job is a multi-step process: Applying base coats, then several coats of the color itself and waiting for each coat to dry before moving onto the next. The drying time may not be significant, but you basically have to do the same job six or seven times over. Each coat requires you to travel an entire circuit around the car.
Applying a vinyl wrap might be a painstaking process requiring patience and a delicate hand, but at least you know that once you cover the car, you’re finished. If you’re going to do the job yourself, vinyl is the clear winner.
List of tools needed for vinyl wraps & plasti-dip
Tools for Vinyl Wraps
Squeegee, Heat Gun, Utility Knife, Magnets, Another Person.
Tools For Plasti-Dip
Spray Gun, Hose, Taping Supplies, A Whole Bunch Of Tape, Paper.
The most important consideration in this whole exercise is the durability of each product. After all, neither vinyl film nor Plasti-Dip can fulfill any promises of protecting your car and its paint job if they can’t take care of themselves. Both products are durable to a point, but one has a clear advantage.
Vinyl is quite resilient on its own. The sheets resist tearing, cracking and chemical breakdown. Chips from stones and other road debris might introduce small imperfections in the vinyl film, but the vinyl will win far more of those battles than it loses.
Plasti-Dip is certainly capable of taking a beating, but to get the most out of a Plasti-Dip coat, you’ll want to apply additional products: UV protectant coatings to battle the sun’s rays, a gasoline protector so you don’t eat away the area around the fuel door, and so on. These additional protectant layers will add time and money to your job.
Bird droppings and insect impacts can also degrade the Plasti-Dip’s outer layer. Experts recommend that you clean your car often to wash away these foreign substances before they do permanent damage. We’re sure you like to keep your vehicle clean anyway, but you shouldn’t feel like you have to rush home to wash your car every time you notice you got hit by a bird or finish a highway drive collecting bugs.
Vinyl film naturally resists both UV rays and the corrosive effects of all sorts of foreign substances that might all be on your car. Bird droppings and insect debris are unsightly, and you’ll surely want to wash them off to keep your car looking its best, but it’s good to know you don’t have to worry about these substances causing permanent damage to your vehicle’s finish.
In the matter of durability of protective sprays vs. paint protection film, the paint protection film takes an easy victory.
As you weigh the costs and durability of the two options, you should also have a good grasp on the expected lifespan of whichever solution you choose. You can reasonably expect vinyl film to last upwards of ten years. If you’re planning to keep your car for a long time, it’s comforting to know you’ll only have to do this job once.
Plasti-Dip, on the other hand, will start to break down around the three-year mark. This isn’t good news if you’re in it for the long haul, but perhaps you only plan to keep the car for a while before you trade it in or sell it. In that case, a three-year lifespan isn’t a deal-breaker.
Calling a winner here isn’t as easy, because not every application will need to last for a decade.
Lifespan of vinyl wraps & plasti-dip
Vinyl Wrap - You can reasonably expect vinyl film to last upwards of ten years.
Plasti-Dip - Plasti-dip will start to break down around the three-year mark.
Continual Care and Maintenance
Caring for vinyl film and Plasti-Dip coatings involves the same process: Regular washing with soap and water. Vinyl can take a little more vigorous scrubbing than the Plasti-Dip can, so you don’t have to pull out the kid gloves for your vinyl wrap.
Neither covering requires you to apply wax nor other additional layers or products in routine maintenance. However, keeping the surface free from the winter road treatment chemicals, bird dirt and insects will do wonders for the long-term survival of both the protective film and the protective spray.
If your vinyl film does incur damage, you can replace the damaged panel without having to repaint your entire car. Since your vinyl film won’t fade from exposure to the sun and the elements, you won’t have to worry about mismatching panels.
If your Plasti-Dip coating gets chipped or eaten away, you can spray the affected area and do some touch-up work to blend the repair in with the rest of the surface and hope the rest of the coat hasn’t faded enough to make the new spray stand out.
By a nose, we think vinyl film has the edge.
Ease of Removal
You probably aren’t going to keep this car forever, and a big reason for choosing a paint protection solution is the ability to remove it and return the vehicle to its pristine factory paint job. So how easy is it to remove your vinyl film? It’s as simple as freeing up a corner of each panel and pulling it up slowly and carefully. The vinyl adhesive may leave some residue behind, but that’s easy enough to clean up with some soap and water.
Removing your Plasti-Dip coating can also be as simple as finding a corner and peeling it all off. The coating will stick to itself and come off in one sheet. Special cleaning solutions do exist for removing any stubborn bits of residue, but since those products are designed to dissolve one type of paint — the Plasti-Dip — you want to be careful they don’t dissolve your car’s original paint job, too.
Removing vinyl film will be a much more straightforward process, and therefore gets the edge in this category.
Now that we’ve gotten all of the practical considerations out of the way, we can talk about your aesthetic options. The cost and the performance of your protective coating are undoubtedly important, but a cheap, durable solution that looks hideous might be worse than an expensive, fragile solution that looks fantastic.
So in the visual attractiveness department, what are the differences in dipping vs. wrapping?
As far as which looks better between wrapping and dipping, subjectivity will always play a role. What looks good to you is so personal that it’s impossible to pass judgment here in this article. We can give you an idea of what you have to work with, though.
With traditional Plasti-Dip, your options were limited to all of the colors of the rainbow in a matte finish. After all, it’s essentially a coating of rubber on your car, and it’s tough to make rubber look shiny. But the market demanded, so suppliers provided solutions to give your Plasti-Dip coating a desirable shine. If you like that matte look, a Plasti-Dip coating will be the ticket. If you want shiny but also want Plasti-Dip, you’ll have to shell out a little more to get a special finishing spray.
In the vinyl arena, the sky is the limit on finishes. You can have glossy, matte, metallic, mirrored, chrome or even carbon fiber. Color options are also limited only by your imagination. Films of all styles and finishes are produced by the same method, so the choices are staggering. Vinyl film also unlocks the potential for mixing and matching, creating patterns or adding graphics to your car. It’s quite difficult to add an overlay on a Plasti-Dip finish.
Vinyl runs circles around Plasti-Dip here, based on the sheer number of possibilities.
If you want to protect your rims, Plasti-Dip is the only option. You won’t be able to apply vinyl wrap to your wheels and achieve any satisfactory results. Wheel bands are an option, but that will only protect your rims from curb rash. While road debris damage on the face of your rims is relatively rare, only Plasti-Dip will provide that protection.
Other Installation Options
Perhaps you don’t feel the need to cover your car’s entire exterior and would rather focus on the areas that take the most damage. If you would prefer to save some money and address a single area of your car, the front bumper and fenders are your smartest choice. So how do you decide on Plasti-Dip vs. a clear bra for protecting the front of your vehicle?
Clear vinyl film will be your best option here because you don't have to fuss over the best way to implement a two-toned paint job. A clear vinyl car bra will let the original paint shine through but still offer the rugged protection of a vinyl wrap. Clear Plasti-Dip does exist, but if the recommended number of coats is six, you’re starting to add measurable bulk to the front of your car and nowhere else. So even if the result is truly clear, it will still stand out.
If a two-toned look is no problem for you, deciding on protection sprays vs. vinyl bras seems to be an easy call as well. We’ve seen a few well-executed spray jobs that pull off the matte-black finish for the front of the car, but it’s far more likely that your spray job will scream “junkyard bumper replacement.” This is probably the exact opposite of what you’re going for. In this case, the vinyl bra is still the clear winner.
Vinyl holds a distinct advantage over Plasti-Dip in every category but price, and we could indeed apply that outcome to the adage, “You get what you pay for.” That being said, Plasti-Dip does have its uses. If you would prefer to go for the more flexible option that gives you a ton of visual possibilities, contact our helpful sales staff for input. We’ll get you on the road to a new ride in no time.
Aero Car Parts provides, car parts, 3M vehicle wrap and Scotchguard, Remote car starters, Vehicle window tinting,
WeatherTech floor mats, wheels, Lighting kits, installation services and more; for the following areas: Leduc,
Beaumont, Wetaskiwin, Sherwood park, Millet, Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Camrose, Toefield,
Fort Saskatchewan, Thorsby and the entire Edmonton Area.