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Thread: DIY: ZHP Black Cube Interior Repair

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Portland, OR USA
    My Cars
    07.328cic & 13.x1M

    DIY: ZHP Black Cube Interior Repair

    Recently picked up a 2006 330cic zhp. The door pulls/armrests were all scratched up.

    We can't have that, now can we? I am a professional car painter by trade, so issues with painted items drive me crazy.

    So here is how to easily repair it. I'm going to deal specifically with the armrests/door pulls, but the painting process would be the same for any other piece of black cube trim.

    Start by removing your door panel and then unscrew the armrest (or remove whatever piece of trim needs repair). It's held on by 6 Torx screws, the same size as the ones you have to remove on the doorcard. There are plenty of write-ups on how to remove the door panels or trim pieces so I won't go into that here.

    Once you have the armrest out give it a good rub down with isopropryl rubbing alcohol and a final wipe with a clean cloth (lint free is your friend).

    Now that it's clean, tape off the armrest pad and the lower color portion. I highly suggest using 3M green tape, not blue, not beige. It will not hurt your interior, will not leave residue and will not allow bleeding. A tip on the armrest pad is to place the tape about 1/4 -1/2 inch over the edge, then tuck it in with a thin, non-marring tool. Or you can carefully pull up the armrest pad edge ever so slightly and push the tape under by hand. Just make sure everything is taped off properly. Also, make sure to press down on all the edges with your fingernail or plastic tool to be sure the paint doesn't bleed under the tape onto your colored interior lower section.

    Next up, use some 1000, 1200, or 1500 grit sandpaper to lightly sand the entire part. Don't use paper with a number lower than 1000 as the grit will be too much..and dont' use over 1500 as the grit will be too fine. You don't need a block, just rip off a small piece and fold the paper in half/thirds and gently scuff the part. You can use the sandpaper wet or dry. Then give a little more sanding attention to the worst of any scratches. This will help take the hard edge off the missing paint that you are going to cover with new paint. Just don't work any area too much or use force when sanding. Wipe off with dry, lint free cloth when done.

    The part is taped up and sanded, simply give it a quick alcohol wipe down to remove any oils your hands left during sanding, as well as any sanding residue. And now you are ready to paint it!

    I found that Krylon Satin Black paint is a perfect match. One can should do the trick unless you are doing all the interior pieces.

    After you shake it up for a minute or two, spray for a couple seconds away from your project. There is always a bit of clear crap that comes out first. This applies to every time you shake it up (you'll need to shake it up between coats).

    Spray the first coat on as more of a light mist from about a foot away over the whole part. You just want to get a very, very light coat on. A dusting if you will. Give it about 5 minutes to set up. What you are doing is using the paint to act as it's own primer. This rough, dusty coat will help the future layers adhere.

    Next spray a light coat. You don't want to spray so much that it looks wet, or that the coat seems thick. Many light, light coats are greatly preferred. Wait about 15 minutes between coats, don't wait more than 20. I used about 5 light coats and got a perfect match to interior parts sheen.

    Here's after a few coats:

    After you have good coverage of the scratched area, give a final coat as a dusting, just as you started with. This super light final coat is to create the perfect final sheen. Give the part an hour to dry fully. Then buff lightly with a dry clean cloth (I like microfiber).

    Voila! Perfection, and it only took you a couple hours and $4 in paint.

    And the dealer wants $220 for a new armrest? I think not!

    07 Japan Red 328cic, convience, black trim...

    11 Omni Blue Element, ski, camp...

    13 Valencia Orange x1 2.8
    ...nav/Msport/sat, convenience...

    Quote Originally Posted by LinearX
    In the future we'll be like... man, I miss OBD2... OBD57 is so hard to tune.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Fairfax, VA
    My Cars
    E53 4.8iS
    nice write up, wish I had cube trim...
    National Capital Chapter #465420 ///M Registry

    2002///M3 | Steel Gray Metallic | Imola Red | 6MT | Convertible
    2006 X5 4.8iS | LeMans Blue Metallic | Creme Beige

    2006 ///M3 | Silver Gray | Black | Competition Package (ZCP) | 6MT | SOLD
    2000 ///M5 | Oxford Green Metallic II | Caramel Nappa Leather | BMW Individual Black Birch Trim | SOLD
    2003 X5 4.6iS | Black Saphhire Metallic | Black Sport | SOLD
    2006 X3 3.0i M-Sport | Silver Gray | Terracotta | SOLD

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Nr Chester, UK
    My Cars
    2004 318ci M-Sport
    Is this only available in the US?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    My Cars
    e46 330i convertible
    No I'm in the uk and have the same trim

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    My Cars
    2003 bmw 330 m sport
    Ive got black cube trim, but the perviuse owner replaced a couple of parts with blue cube trim, so will this work if I spray the blue trim with the black satin?. Also Im from the UK and this paint is about 45, how did you get it so cheap?.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Windsor/ Detroit
    My Cars
    1996 328i E36


    Davbret... i was wondering how the duplicolor cube trim treatment is holding up? I am about to do this with mine, and wondered how well the Duplicolor holds up to the wear & tear.
    Last edited by vector006; 03-15-2014 at 03:54 PM.
    1996 328i Stock
    2004 330ci M-sport

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Ottawa, Canada
    My Cars
    2005 330CiC M Sport
    Quote Originally Posted by vector006 View Post
    Davbret... i was wondering how the duplicolor cube trim treatment is holding up? I am about to do this with mine, and wondered how well the Duplicolor holds up to the wear & tear.
    Curious too. Mine is the only thing scratched up in my car. Damn metal watch band.
    2005 330Ci Cab M-Sport AW/black/Black cube


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