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Discussion Starter #1
So, I am unhappy with the steering wheel on the 86 Quad. Leather is cracked, hard and generally flat out ugly. So, I pulled off the Hellebore wheel from my 82 Veloce. I was going to do a straight swap, but that wheel also needs refurbishment. So I began the process of removing all the paint on the spokes and and the clear on the wood. Of course after working with it for a while, I've decided that I really want to replace the wood too. I'm at work and have no pictures yet.

I read a post on here where someone did just what I was planning to do and it was good inspiration. However, now I don't want to replace my S3 wheel with a hack Hellebore wheel. So, I've decided to fabricate and install my own wood to replace the old mahogany. I found some ideas on line, and I have all the necessary wood working equipment to do it. Guy made a wood wheel for an MG that turned out looking pretty nice.

So, the questions are has anyone else on this board attempted to replace the wood on a steering wheel, and how did it turn out? Nardi's are sweet, but awful high priced. Also, if anyone has, did you use mahogany or some other species? I have some cherry at home, and maybe some walnut and maple. Curious if anyone has seen one of these wheels made from any other wood.

Thanks in advance!
 

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So, I am unhappy with the steering wheel on the 86 Quad. Leather is cracked, hard and generally flat out ugly.
I once heard from another Spider owner, that the Quad steering wheel is a Veloce steering wheel underneath (vinyl?) and gets leather wrapped.

I cannot verify this. But if your steering wheel is that bad, maybe this interests you as an option for possible use, or even just an experiment to confirm.

Or maybe somebody else that knows this or done this will chime in.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
That's worth knowing. It might be something in the interim that I do while I refurb the S2 wheel. I kind of like that idea. What I need to do is put the Quad wheel back on while I work on the final replacement.

Curious to see if anyone else knows more.

Thanks!
 

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That's worth knowing. It might be something in the interim that I do while I refurb the S2 wheel. I kind of like that idea. What I need to do is put the Quad wheel back on while I work on the final replacement.

Curious to see if anyone else knows more.

Thanks!
Yes, I'd like to know for sure too.
The steering wheel in my Quad is still smooth but not nice and black anymore. I just don't hate the looks of my wheel enough to confirm this for myself.
 

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I just did a leather wheel re-cover on my Porsche with a Wheelskins leather cover. Used a lacing cross stitch pattern like original and it looks almost as good as a new Porsche wheel.
You think Nardi is expensive- look up Porsche!

Bob
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I can imagine! Well, it's not like I'm totally cheap. I'd love a Nardi but my Alfa bucks need to go to more important things. Next most important in line is to fix a rotted out exhaust system. Tired of the rattle!

So while I recharge the account, this could be a fun project that could result in a satisfying ending. Or not, I guess time will tell...
 

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Nardi;

All Alfas up until the 85 - 86 came with real Nardi wheels. When I got my 86 (new) from the dealer, I had the ugly big black wheel replaced with a Nardi. I got the black spoke wheel, as my interior is black and the car is red. They feel much better, and really ad some more class, as if it is really needed, to the spyder. EBay sometimes has real Nardi. You will need an adapter collar to install the Nardi. Be sure it has the Nardi signature on the right hand spoke. Makes a big difference in feel and looks.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Oh man...not sure I want to know that just now! The whole idea to this project of steering wheel swapping is because I think the old ones just look classier and right on a Spider. So, that's my goal. I will keep an eye out and look for a used Nardi. Though, the Hellebore's still seem like a big improvement over the S3 wheels. I will be stripping off the black paint and polishing the spokes and probably going over it with a clear coat for corrosion protection.

Now I just need to determine the wood I want to use. I'm tempted to go with walnut. Anybody seen wheels that aren't mahogany and have an opinion?

Thanks!
 

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Oh man...not sure I want to know that just now! The whole idea to this project of steering wheel swapping is because I think the old ones just look classier and right on a Spider. So, that's my goal. I will keep an eye out and look for a used Nardi. Though, the Hellebore's still seem like a big improvement over the S3 wheels. I will be stripping off the black paint and polishing the spokes and probably going over it with a clear coat for corrosion protection.

Now I just need to determine the wood I want to use. I'm tempted to go with walnut. Anybody seen wheels that aren't mahogany and have an opinion?

Thanks!
Years ago I did a muscle car one in oiled teak. Fantastic grip, good color but not really impressive grain. Cool looking if you are into boats though. Sorry no pics.

Bob
 

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Are you sure the existing wood is too far gone to be refinished? While you're at it, you could also do a wooden dash like this enterprising person did.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Yikes! I won't be doing that. I want to make a shift knob out of whatever I make the wheel from. But, it won't look like that...

Not a fan of that look.
 

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Not a fan either. Car is currently for sale on Kijiji in my area. I wish the seller a lot of luck.

I have a nice chunk of olive wood that might be the right size for a shifter knob. Beautiful grain too.
 

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DoubleDawg, since you say it already looks terrible as is, are you still going to try and peel back the leather to see what it looks like underneath?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Mike,

I tried to peek in and see what I could see, but decided not to destroy the wheel. So, I just put it back on and am driving it as is for now until the other one is refurbished.

Who knows, maybe some day there might be a need for this one by someone else, or even me. Hate to ruin it for them. Or maybe some day I can figure out how to recover it like Bob suggested above.

Weather has finally gotten good here with temps in the mid 80's. Even drove to work top down today. Doesn't get much better than that. Glad to have the wheel back on and the Spider drivable.

Bob
 
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