The stock radio bezel is made from plastic, as seen it has a pebble finish grain in the inside with a chrome bead on the outer edge. The top section housed the original AM FM Philco radio and the bottom cut out housed the heater switch. We are upgrading this car as a Resto Mod so we need to install new creature comforts and this old Bezel will not work.
We start off by taking 12 gauge stainless steel and cut some 1/2 inch strips. This will be used for the outer edge in order to get the chrome bead look like the original bezel. We will polish this edge just before the completed unit is painted black in the center.
A simple jig mounted in a vise is all that is needed to bend the stainless the same shape as the original bezel. On some parts hand tweaking is better then power tools for control especially small parts.
Lou takes some 20 gauge steel and marks where the A/C-Heater control will be in the bezel. He has it centered marked and ready to cut out.
He uses a small hole saw to cut the corners and a cut off tool to remove the center section 1/16th away from his marks. As seen is using a carbide burr in an angle grinder being careful to trial fit as he goes.
He continues fitting until he is satisfied with the fit. As seen in comparison to the original plastic one she is starting to take shape.
As close up shot shows a nice razor blade gap.
We tack weld the stainless edging to the carbon steel face plate on the back side where no one will see.
Clamped up and held in place Lou can hammer tweak the edging in to exact placement before welding up solid on the inside edging that goes around the A/C bezel.
Lou felt it necessary to make an aluminum buck with holes for the vise grips to hold in place while welding for an exact part.
On to the lower section where the stereo will go we have a shroud to build as seen the template is odd shaped, Regular steel is fine for this.
After Lou cut it out and bent it you can see that it will do the job.
He tacked it on from the back side and with a side to side comparison it is looking good.
Next he made a flat section where the front cut out will be and we will tack this on and then measure the face plate for the stereo cut out.
She fits exact and has a factory look.
As seen the stereo face plate is welded in, note the slight angle at the top as this matches the original where the mounting holes will be located.
To make time Lou cut through one end which he will weld up and started slicing the cut out he pre marked for the Tuner/CD.
Side brackets were made to attach to the radio and hold it tightly in place.
Flush mount screws are used to hold it down.
The radio fits nicely as the unit is showing its style.
Back to the A/C cut out he made a shroud to fill the top of the unit and also use this for mounting it with screws.
This shows the top section where the shroud covers the opening there once was.
Over to the cars dash of which the side panels are made out of fiberglass. A small relief cut was inserted because the radio is wider then the stock one. Needless to say the outer bezel covers this modification so no cosmetic problems.
From the back side you can see how tight but right she fits. No clearance issues and ready to fire up the tunes to check her out.
As seen the outer bead will be polished and the inner section will be sprayed for a pebble texture and then satin black. Up dated technology with a factory appearance.
Here is the before comparison to get an idea what we started with.