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    Thread: My interior makeover (long... dialup beware!) - 2nd coming!!!

    1. 08-01-2003 01:37 AM #1
      Repaired for the 2nd time . . .

      Here's what OP installed when you didn't even own a car.

      Ignore the yellow wire in the left pic; that's a VW repair wire for sticking into the Euro switch. Why do I have one? Because I'll be installing these soon

      Anyway, what installed was aluminum door pins, OEM Gold Optic trim, neon lighting, and a pair of blue LEDs for the alarm lights. I got the door pins from someone on the classifieds (I forgot who -- sorry!), the trim kit from PGPerformance (kudos for the great packing job they did -- the stuff came individually wrapped, bundled in bubblewrap, padded with foam, and packed with styrofoam peanuts and newspaper!), the neon from streetglow.com, and the alarm LEDs from BoneKrusher.
      The tools I used: t20 torx driver, 13mm socket wrench, phillips and flathead screwdrivers, pliers, scissors, electrical tape, 3M mounting tape, assorted wiring (22 gauge should do it), soldering iron, relay, and a Bentley manual.
      The steps I took
      Disconnect the battery, just to be safe. I started on the rear door handle trim to warm up. Just pry them off with a screwdriver wrapped in a rag

      Pull the clips off the old handle and pop them back into place

      Then pop the new handle on:

      Now things get messy. To install the blue alarm LEDs, the front door panels need to come off. For the passenger side, you just remove the door handle as described earlier, then unscrew the two big phillips screws in recessed in the handle. Then 3 torx screws along the bottom edge, and 1 phillips screw on the forward edge near the tweeter. Then pop the panel off starting at the bottom, pull upwards when you get to the top, and unclip all the wires and lock cables connecting the door to the panel. It's kinda scary if you haven't done it before, but once you have, it's a piece of cake really

      The driver's side is a tiny bit different. Remove the door handle retaining piece with a small screwdriver:

      Pull up on it to release it from the clips, then disconnect the wiring harness. Remove the 3 large phillips screws, then follow the same steps above to get the panel off. The module with all the buttons needs to be relocated from the old door handle to the new one (unscrew from the old, screw to the new):

      Pop the old alarm lights off with a small screwdriver, and install the new ones

      To run the wiring for the passenger side alarm light, and to install the trim kit and neon, all the trim under the dash needs to come out. Start at the driver's side and pop off the panel containing the fuse panel door (open the fuse panel, grab the outside edge, and yank):

      Remove all the torx screws you can see under the steering wheel, then pop off the left panel. Remove the torx screw hidden by that panel, then remove the left panel:

      This frees up the bottom panel, which can be removed:

      It's important to remember where everything is clipped in, the order in which they are removed, and where all the screws go. Also, the torx screws in the door panels look similar to the torx screws in the dash trim, but they are different, so keep them separated. Moving on... remove the rear ashtray by popping the side covers off and unclipping it from the base trim:

      Remove the armrest by popping off the side over on the driver's side, then removing the bolt with a 13mm socket wrench. Then remove the two torx screws under where the ashtray was

      Where the center trim connects to the console trim are two round covers. Remove them and the torx screws underneath. Pull the handbrake up as far as it will go, move both front seats back, and put the car in 1st or 3rd gear. Tilt rear of the center trim up, slide it back, tilt back to level, then slide it up and forward over the handbrake

      Now for the center console trim. Remove the shift boot by pressing forward on the near edge, and pulling up. The knob doesn't have to come off, but it makes it easier (cut the brass ring holding the knob in and replace it with a small hose clamp when you re-install later). Take out the red ashtray dish and remove the screw under it. Slide the astray forward into the console.

      Remove all the torx screws around the center console. Tilt the near end up, then wiggle it out and over the shifter.

      Disconnect the ashtray from the wiring harness.

      Remove this screw so that the glove box can come off later (lower right corner of the radio rack):

      Take off the passenger side panel (same as the driver's side fuse panel cover):

      Remove all the torx screws on the bottom of the glove box, then open the glove box door and remove the torx screws near the top. Remove the large phillips screw on the right side near the door hinge which secures the glove box in place. Pop the glove box out towards you, and disconnect the light and switch:

      Remove the radio with radio keys or equivalent:

      Pull the A/C panel cover off, and unscrew the four torx screws under it:

      Unscrew all the torx screws around the radio rack, and it should come right out:

      With the rack out, it's very easy to remove the cupholders from it. Press down on the retaining clips with a small screwdriver, and slide it out.

      Flip open the cupholder flap, and use a small screwdriver to pop the two metal tabs up to release the flap:

      Put the new flap on (reverse process), put the cupholder into the new radio rack provided with the trim kit (GLS or GL owners only), and reinstall the new radio rack. Screw in the A/C controls, pop the new A/C panel on, put the radio back in, and pop the side trim pieces on.

      At this point, I ran a pair of wires from the driver's door to the passenger door for the alarm LEDs. I tucked the wiring high against the firewall to keep it all hidden, and ran it behind the center console and glove box. Reconnect the battery to test, then put the door panels back on. I also installed the aluminum door pins (1/2 turn counterclockwise with a pair of pliers to remove the old pin, reverse to install new one):

      Time for the neon. Chop all the cigarette adapters off the ends. Strip the ends and twist all the positive (white striped) leads together, then twist all the ground leads together. I tapped ground off the brown (orange?) wire going to the cigarette lighter, and positive from the red/black wire. The ground wire connects to the ground leads of the lights. The positive wire connects to two pins on the relay (I don't remember which pins, but it's not hard to figure out). The positive leads of the lights go to another pin on the relay. The last thing needed is control wire. I considered tapping into the grey/blue wire in the comfort control module (that's the wire that turns the lights on/off when you unlock the doors and stuff), but there's waaay too many wires down there to look through. Instead, ran a wire from the ground terminal of the dome light:

      I took out the center sun visor and ran the wire through the hole where the screw goes. When the center sun visor is reinstalled, it hides the wire completely. The wire runs along the edge of the windshield, down the driver's side A-pillar, down and around the fuse panel, and underneath the dash (over the pedals) to the relay. To secure the wire in the groove around the windshield, I rolled up little tubes of electrical tape and jammed them into the groove after the wire. I also used a small screwdriver to tuck the the wire into any tight spots. The result is that the wire is completely hidden from view, inside or out. The relay and all excess wire is tucked under the center console behind where the ashtray is. After putting all the trim back, I secured the neon lights in place with 3M mounting tape and/or zip ties or wires. There's a 10" tube under the driver and passenger footwells, a 3" tube hidden right above the ashtray, and a 3" tube in front of the rear astray. Here are some pics (I haven't had time to take any good night shots yet):

      All the neon up front is hidden from view under normal seating conditions. Because the light is white, the lights aren't noticeable at all during the day. At night, they provide a soft glow which supplements my "superwhite" dome lighting. They come on and off with the center dome light automatically -- which means that they can also be manually controlled by turning the center dome light on/off.
      Last edited by 03_uni-B; 02-09-2015 at 08:29 AM.

    2. Banned
      Join Date
      Jan 12th, 2003
      08-01-2003 02:15 AM #2
      Nice work!

    3. 08-01-2003 02:30 AM #3

    4. Member nirav's Avatar
      Join Date
      Nov 15th, 2001
      Long Beach, CA
      2001 VW Golf
      08-02-2003 12:55 AM #4
      damn, that is very impressive. How long did it take you to do all this? Do you have more close pics of the center console installed? YOUR WORK IS APRECIATED MAN! Can't wait till I install my aluminum dash next week [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]

      Modified by nirav at 11:57 PM 8-1-2003

    5. 08-02-2003 12:57 AM #5
      nice job!! ---- and a good write up [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG] [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]

    6. 08-02-2003 01:03 AM #6
      that write-up is one of my favorites! (literally! Favorites- Jetta-My Interior Makeover!) Thanks for the repost to make me want to spend more

    7. Member modiGTI's Avatar
      Join Date
      Aug 2nd, 2003
      Las Vegas, NV
      16' GTI Autobahn PP, 17' Sportage EX
      08-02-2003 01:06 AM #7
      wow GJ
      PSN: NovembersChopin

    8. Banned KOG's Avatar
      Join Date
      Mar 5th, 2003
      08-02-2003 10:56 AM #8
      nice write up

    9. 08-02-2003 12:26 PM #9
      Great tech install...
      [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG] from Hella NoRcAL.

    10. Member hmsa's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jan 20th, 2003
      2011 Audi A5, 2008 VW Tiguan
      08-05-2003 03:46 PM #10
      [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG] [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG] [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]

    11. 08-05-2003 04:07 PM #11
      [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG] [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG] [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]

    12. Member
      Join Date
      Mar 28th, 2002
      Queens NY / Nutley NJ
      2016 GMC ACADIA / 2006 S2000
      08-05-2003 04:12 PM #12
      that looks nice [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]
      can you show us some pics at night from outside with the doors open??

    13. 08-05-2003 04:28 PM #13
      I guess I should have made this more clear in the initial post.
      The interior makover was performed by nihmrat, not by me. Nimhrat has not poted since Jan. 03 and the links to the pictures in his original thread were bad (red x). I had the images saved on my computer and REPOSTED his text and images.
      They are not of my car, they are of nihmrat's car. There's no need to respond to this thread, as nimhrat probably won't see any of your comments. I only reposted everything so (1) people could see the pics again and (2) someone could use his write-up to help do their own interior makeover.
      I'm not complaining, just wanted to make sure you all knew that this is not my car and that the car's owner doesn't appear to visit the Vortex anymore (this may or may not be correct).

    14. 12-04-2003 09:52 AM #14
      the only thing i might have done differently is to relocate the rear neon to the underside of the front seats somehow. i don't like how you can see the light source...

    15. 12-04-2003 09:54 AM #15
      looks good...man that sure does look like it was a lot of work...but lookin good [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]

    16. 12-04-2003 10:13 AM #16
      hell of a write up!! looks really nice, bump for a fellow Basking Ridger (well former) [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]

    17. 12-04-2003 10:18 AM #17
      Quote, originally posted by Sully NJ 1.8 »
      hell of a write up!! looks really nice, bump for a fellow Basking Ridger (well former) [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]

      It's not my car. I just reposted the original thread (see top of THIS thread) for nimhrat (it's his car) since the pics in his thread were dead.

    18. 12-04-2003 10:20 AM #18

    19. 12-04-2003 10:27 AM #19
      Quote, originally posted by Sully NJ 1.8 »

      That's exactly how I feel. I was trying to do the Vortex a favor by reposting the original thread since no one else seemed to have it saved. Now everyone compliments me on how much they like MY car. It's Nimhrat who did a great job -HE should get the credit. Not me.

    20. 04-01-2004 01:18 AM #20
      Where do you suppose he got the parts in the second picture? My black and grey plastic interior stuff could use a makeover as well after 113,000 miles. The soft coatings are getting worn off - looks pretty shabby. I like the black inlays on the grey door pulls especially.

    21. Banned
      Join Date
      Nov 12th, 2002
      04-01-2004 02:07 AM #21
      mods, can we add this post to the DIY?
      I was actually interested in doing this a few weeks back, but opted not to from lack of information. Specifically, no pics.
      Good to see someone repost this.

    22. 04-08-2004 02:34 PM #22
      Thanks for re-posting this, and for saving and serving the pics -- I deleted the pics from my webspace a long, long time ago, figuring that my original post was dead and buried. Glad people have found it to be useful! I kind of dropped out of the scene for the last couple of years, and I certainly didn't expect to still see one of my posts still floating around when I returned!
      What brings me back? Paid off the car a few years sooner than I thought. Time to do some more mods!

    23. 04-27-2004 07:23 PM #23
      Looks like all the pics are gone :-(

    24. 04-27-2004 07:25 PM #24
      where where where..pics are dead

    25. 04-27-2004 07:30 PM #25
      pleas get the pics back, me wanna seeeee

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