Has anyone made their own headliner back board?

Longroof79

Rocket Powered Basset Hound
Oct 14, 2008
11,808
113
Gainesville, Fl
I recall a discussion awhile back regarding headliner boards and what could be used to duplicate one. One member with a Malibu wagon, if I recall, said he made his own headliner back board using 4mm plastic corrugated sheeting. If he sees this thread, I hope he can elaborate on the method he used to form his. I'm sure a heatgun came into play. The bow system had been mentioned, but my friend is looking for a more original replacement alternative. .
 
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random_farmhick

Not-quite-so-new-guy
Dec 13, 2020
37
18
When I was looking for a headliner board for my square body crewcab, when no one was replicating them, I had the thought of spray foam. I was going to use some of the thicker painters plastic, like a 7-9 mil and get it set down on the inside of the roof, get a diy spray foam kit such as the frothpac, and spray that on there, then carve/sand it to the shape I was wanting. Of course there is one big problem with that, it has to be upside down... So either get another wagon roof and cut it off and turn it upside down for a template, or put your body on a rotisserie, but that's not easy either. The great thing with that setup though, is it would be relatively simple to have molded in speakers or lights that would look otherwise "factory", rather than something added on.

I should add, I ran out of ambition and money on that project and it got parted out because of life getting in the way, so I never actually got it done...
 
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Longroof79

Rocket Powered Basset Hound
Thread starter
Oct 14, 2008
11,808
113
Gainesville, Fl
When I was looking for a headliner board for my square body crewcab, when no one was replicating them, I had the thought of spray foam. I was going to use some of the thicker painters plastic, like a 7-9 mil and get it set down on the inside of the roof, get a diy spray foam kit such as the frothpac, and spray that on there, then carve/sand it to the shape I was wanting. Of course there is one big problem with that, it has to be upside down... So either get another wagon roof and cut it off and turn it upside down for a template, or put your body on a rotisserie, but that's not easy either. The great thing with that setup though, is it would be relatively simple to have molded in speakers or lights that would look otherwise "factory", rather than something added on.

I should add, I ran out of ambition and money on that project and it got parted out because of life getting in the way, so I never actually got it done...
Thanks for your reply. What a creative idea. I guess the spray foam that could be used in a large quantity would be the stuff they use to insolate walls and between roof joists, etc. The fact that it can be formed and shaped. I think that's also what they (Just Dashes) use to repair dash pads. Not the skin, which is vinyl, but the base construction/ underlayment. I do have my headliner shell(s) that could possibly be used as a mold, or form to make a mold....if that makes any sense. As the wheels spin...:unsure:
 
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random_farmhick

Not-quite-so-new-guy
Dec 13, 2020
37
18
Thanks for your reply. What a creative idea. I guess the spray foam that could be used in a large quantity would be the stuff they use to insolate walls and between roof joists, etc. The fact that it can be formed and shaped. I think that's also what they (Just Dashes) use to repair dash pads. Not the skin, which is vinyl, but the base construction/ underlayment. I do have my headliner shell(s) that could possibly be used as a mold, or form to make a mold....if that makes any sense. As the wheels spin...:unsure:
Same stuff, this is about the cheapest I could find, and would be more than enough to do probably 10 roofs, but of course you will need to use it all within a couple of weeks after first use. If you own your own house, you should be able to find a use for it though so it doesn't go bad, or even maybe a friend.
 
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melloelky

Comic Book Super Hero
Oct 22, 2017
3,821
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I recall a discussion awhile back regarding headliner boards and what could be used to duplicate one. One member with a Malibu wagon, if I recall, said he made his own headliner back board using 4mm plastic corrugated sheeting. If he sees this thread, I hope he can elaborate on the method he used to form his. I'm sure a heatgun came into play. The bow system had been mentioned, but my friend is looking for a more original replacement alternative. .
i think it was the felix wagon project Jack.
 
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Longroof79

Rocket Powered Basset Hound
Thread starter
Oct 14, 2008
11,808
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Gainesville, Fl
Same stuff, this is about the cheapest I could find, and would be more than enough to do probably 10 roofs, but of course you will need to use it all within a couple of weeks after first use. If you own your own house, you should be able to find a use for it though so it doesn't go bad, or even maybe a friend.
Thanks buddy. I appreciate your input and information. With the short shelf life of the foam, I think much of it would be wasted. Not cost effective. and you're right, unless you're doing more than one roof and other home projects, it just doesn't pay.
 

Longroof79

Rocket Powered Basset Hound
Thread starter
Oct 14, 2008
11,808
113
Gainesville, Fl
i think it was the felix wagon project Jack.
Thanks Chris,
I'll pick John's brain, or go back on his build thread. Back in the day when I had my old Ford Econoline van, I did a headliner in that using Masonite board as a backing and fabric glued to the board. In the van, the board didn't need to flex as much as doing the roof of a G-body wagon. Luan would have worked as well, and again, there's more curves in doing the wagon roof.
 
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Tomeal

G-Body Guru
Apr 17, 2016
813
93
Clyde,pa
Thinking out loud here. Since you have a headliner backer, could you cover it with some kind of thin plastic and make a mold out of fiberglass?
 
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Longroof79

Rocket Powered Basset Hound
Thread starter
Oct 14, 2008
11,808
113
Gainesville, Fl
Thinking out loud here. Since you have a headliner backer, could you cover it with some kind of thin plastic and make a mold out of fiberglass?
It's funny you should mention that. The thought of using my headliner board as a mold had come up. It's good to see someone else thinking outside the box. It would be nice to do it in fiberglass. It would certainly have strength, but resin and cloth does get pricey and may get heavy.. I like the process that boat builders use to spray on glass into molds. I'm also thinking that the corrugated plastic board could be formed using a heat gun and using the existing headliner board as a form.
 
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blairc_789

Apprentice
Jun 18, 2021
58
33
North Carolina
Thanks for your reply. What a creative idea. I guess the spray foam that could be used in a large quantity would be the stuff they use to insolate walls and between roof joists, etc. The fact that it can be formed and shaped. I think that's also what they (Just Dashes) use to repair dash pads. Not the skin, which is vinyl, but the base construction/ underlayment. I do have my headliner shell(s) that could possibly be used as a mold, or form to make a mold....if that makes any sense. As the wheels spin...:unsure:
Expanding foam is used in the car audio scene to fill empty areas to reduce rattles, and insulate sound. Typically it's made of 2 parts you mix and then pour into the areas you are trying to fill. I can't put much input into how a headliner would go
 
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