As many of you with 350Z’s may have noticed, the material Nissan used to coat the switch panel plates is horribly prone to scratching. We set out to rectify the problem with an $8 can of dupli-color vinyl & fabric flat black paint some 100 and 300 grit sand paper.
Here is what our panels looked like before we started, whole lotta ugly.
The driver side 350z switch panel popped off fairly easily with just a flat head screw driver wedged between the panel and the door. If for some reason you happen to accidentally break one of the plastic clips that lock the panel in place just mix some JB weld together and apply it gently to the sheared clip. The epoxy can withstand extreme heat and solidifies within 4 minutes, a much better solution then superglue. The window switches can be shimmed out from the plate using the same flat head screw driver wedging them in between to dislodge them from the plastic locks. There are 4 locks for each on the drivers side.
The passenger side switch plate can be removed by first removing the silver handle from the door. Slide a flat head screw driver carefully into the silver panel inside the handle it should pop out easily. From here you can access the two screw bolts holding the handle to the door. The rest of the process is the same as the driver side.
Once you get the plate removed get settled in for some sanding. Start with the 100 grit and work the panel until the grey coating behind the black rubber coat is completely removed. Don’t put too much force into the sanding to avoid any deep lines in the surface. After the grey surface has been removed you can begin wet sanding with the 300 grit in smooth lines. Try to sand in a single line top to bottom to avoid rough patches. After about 2 hours your panel should look like the following.
Now find a safe place where you can spray some paint. Spray in a left to right, right to left swishing pattern starting about 6 to 8 inches from the panel spraying in light coats to avoid over spray. We did 5 coats waiting roughly 10 minutes in between each to let them dry. When your done your panel will look like this.
Let us know if this diy review helped you.