Later today I’m heading over to Joel’s to do some work on the Dodge. I’m not entirely sure what we’re going to work on but last we talked Joel mentioned there is a lot of chrome we could polish so I’m guessing we’ll do that. But, maybe we’ll just look at all of the things Joel’s been working on this past week, like the cool light he discovered on the dash. Or maybe we’ll just press the starter button and listen to the Dodge fire. Or turn on the headlights. Or try to put the motor back together. Or…
There are so many great options – but whatever we decide to do, I know we’ll have fun just like we did last Saturday when we tackled the interior of the Dodge to see if could clean it up a bit.
First off, Joel and I decided to take off the seat covers and see what was underneath. The fabric underneath (some people have suggested the fabric might be mohair) is a nice tan trimmed with a darker brown vinyl-type fabric. They really are nice looking, except for the fact that there are some rips and the fabric is so fragile that it rips easily.
We got to vacuuming the seats when Joel said something like, “Hey Myrn,”
“Yep,” I replied over the roar of the shop vac.
“I’m thinking maybe we should remove the headliner today.”
That surprised me a little. Removing the headliner was definitely on our to-do list but we hadn’t planned to do it that day.
Then Joel pointed out something pretty obvious that we somehow missed. The headliner was sagging and it appeared to be sagging because it was full of stuff. What kind of stuff was up in the roof of the Dodge we weren’t exactly sure but one thing did become clear – If we removed the headliner, whatever it was that was making the fabric sag was going to fall all over the seats we were carefully vacuuming. And we’d have to vacuum them all over again. We quickly realized that it made good sense to remove the headliner right then.
“Okay let’s do it.” I said. So we removed the front seat to save it from the stuff that was sure to fall. Then Joel got out his pocket knife, I took out my iPhone to video the process, and Joel made a swift cut to the headliner and….a massive explosion of stuff landed on the floorboards of the Dodge.
In the mess we found:
- the skull of a small rodent
- shreds of insulation-filled paper from in between the headliner and the roof
- tiny scraps of paper, most of which appeared to be Bible literature (our Grandpa was a Gideon who gave away Bibles and had Bible literature around – we found a complete pamphlet in another part of the car earlier in the day)
- lots and lots of rat and mouse droppings
and, my favorite find that made me scream when I scooped it up with my (thankfully gloved) hands to put in the trash bag
- a rather large, very dead, fairly well preserved rat
For the next couple of hours, we continued to remove the headliner, saved swatches of the fabric, removed the scraps of stuff we found, did a lot of vacuuming, put the front seat back in and vacuumed some more.
The Dodge looks much nicer now, and smells nicer, too, with the headliner and debris removed and a blanket thrown over the front seat. We know we’ll have to reupholster the seats at some time and replace the headliner. But, for now, we’re good to go.