Keeping Trim – Interior Removal Kit

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By Chris Pollitt

Car interiors are important, given that’s where we spend most of our time. As such, you want everything to be in place, to be free from rattles and to not have any broken elements. However, over the course of restoration, those clips and fixings can and will break. You’ll scratch interior panels as you try and remove them, and you’ll skin knuckles trying to get leverage. Unless, of course, you buy this little bundle of kit designed specifically to make light work of interior trim removal. Play it smart, buy this kit, and keep your interior in perfect condition. 

1) Trim Removal Tool Kit

restoration, retrimming, car interior, classic car interior, classic car repair, project car, motoring, trim, automotive, classic car, retro car, car and classic, carandclassic.co.uk

The biggest problem you’ll have to overcome is getting behind interior trim in order to pull it away from the metalwork. You can’t go in there with a screwdriver, as you’ll just cause damage. You can’t go in there with your fingers, as you’ll just hurt yourself. That’s why you need this kit, which comes with all manner of pliable yet strong plastic tools that will easily shim behind trim and fixings without causing damage. There is also a trim clip tool that will let you get some much-needed leverage. 

2) Trim Removal Pliers

restoration, retrimming, car interior, classic car interior, classic car repair, project car, motoring, trim, automotive, classic car, retro car, car and classic, carandclassic.co.uk

These pliers from Draper are nothing short of a godsend when it comes to removing trim. The thin nose can get between trim, while the opening action is strong enough to pull most trim away. The design also spreads the load, meaning you don’t end up with any unsightly witness marks caused by removal. There are lots of cheaper alternatives out there, but don’t bother – we’re talking from experience here. These Draper ones are the way to go. 

3) Trim Fastener Pliers/Snips

restoration, retrimming, car interior, classic car interior, classic car repair, project car, motoring, trim, automotive, classic car, retro car, car and classic, carandclassic.co.uk

There is no escaping that, on an older car, some fasteners or clips are going to be stuck fast, broken or rusted. In the event of discovering such a stumbling block, what can you do? You can’t fit a hacksaw in there. Your normal pliers are too chunky and if you just pull at the panel, you’re going to cause damage. Enter stage left these pliers/snips, that are thin enough to get to the stubborn fastener, but also strong enough to cut through it or at least grab it well enough to allow you to pull it free. 

4) Trim Fastener Selection

restoration, retrimming, car interior, classic car interior, classic car repair, project car, motoring, trim, automotive, classic car, retro car, car and classic, carandclassic.co.uk

Look, you’re going to break some clips and fixings. Old plastic goes brittle over time, and as such, things are going to crumble as soon as you go near them. Don’t worry though, as you can buy this kit, which has a vast selection (over 400) of the most common clips and fixings, meaning you can replace anything broken without issue. For a mere twelve quid, they’re worth having on the shelf. Otherwise, you might end up with a job being delayed because of one clip, which would be deeply frustrating. 

5) Metal Speed Fasteners

restoration, retrimming, car interior, classic car interior, classic car repair, project car, motoring, trim, automotive, classic car, retro car, car and classic, carandclassic.co.uk
Older cars used metal fasteners and clips, and over time, they rust or lose their tension and as such, no longer hold things in place. With this little box of various metal clips/speed fasteners, you’ll never be left frustrated by a rusty one, nor will you have to bodge a repair and settle for second best. These clips are also coated, so rust shouldn’t be an issue in the future. Just make sure you use new screws as well – don’t go sticking the rusty, old ones back in!

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