Replaced the glovebox

So I dragged the original glove box into the house and did some triage on it.   Plan A was to use classic redneck engineering techniques to fix the old box.  In other words duct tape.  However this box is in rough shape.  The front edge that goes against the dash is all torn up.  Half the seams are either torn or very fragile.  And it still has bits of mouse poop in it.  While I am sure I could make it work I am equally sure I will not be happy with the result.

Plan B was to look at making a new glove box.  It is just folded cardboard, so how hard could it be?  Again the answer is harder than I would like.  First I would have to source the cardboard.   Once found I would have to  measure, bend, and fasten it together.   Finally for good measure I would have to transfer the metal nutplates from the old box so the screws have something to grab.  This could take days or longer.

Plan C is to contact Don at PartsDude4x4.  He seems to be willing and able to do the leg work to supply Jeepster parts.  If he can source the original part he does.  Failing that he finds acceptable substitutes.  And if all else fails he will actually get the part made by somebody.

Which is what he did with the glove box.  Somewhere he had a glove box made out of ABS plastic that fits.  The catch is that it costs $50 with shipping.  But the result should be far better than I can hope for doing it myself.   Time to pull out the credit card…

Three days later here we go.  I am already feeling better about the $50.  Now what I SHOULD do is put this on the shelf until I get the passenger door check strap issue resolved.  But that would be smart.  What I WILL do is install this thing right away.

It might be hard to see but the space back there is tight.   I quickly realized the vent drain and the courtesy light would both have to go just to get the box up behind the dash.   I now suspect a lot of the damage on the old box was from previous owners bending it to get it in and out.  Right at this point I am realizing the spring assist/light switch in the upper center is gonna have to go as well.

With everything possible removed it was still like getting Richard MacDuff’s sofa out of the staircase.  If you get the literary reference here leave a comment and I will publicly acknowledge you are either well-read or can use Google.   I just keep trying angles to find some way that would fit the “mouth” of the box up over the “ears” of the dashboard opening while clearing the heater box and fan motor behind.  Something close to what you see here worked out.

Finally I worked it into position.  The urge to flex the plastic here was overwhelming but ABS will crack and once again this box was $50.

The new box came with a handful of hex-headed sheet-metal screws like furnace ducts and gutters use.  I cleverly deduced that those were supposed to screw into the plastic.  To ease the process I used a small drill bit and this tool holder to hand-drill pilot holes.  That worked really well.  The plastic is so soft that it only took a few minutes to hand drill a hole and while doing it I was able to hold the box in the proper position with my other hand.

Job done.  The end result is very sturdy, fits perfectly, and looks nicer than most of the Jeepster.  I put back all the bits I had to remove to get this in and called it a day.

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