In our September issue, we showed you the step-by-step procedures it takes to re-cover a bucket seat with simple tools you already own. To continue on with the "helping you restore an interior at home" theme, we will now tackle the headliner. Just about every muscle car up to the mid-'70s had a bow-style headliner. Instead of a hard board covered in material like what's found in later cars, these were sewn together units suspended by multiple steel bows inserted into the roof. While this bow-style look is pretty sexy when done right, it is also kind of a pain to restore. This story will map out the procedure and simple tools needed to complete the roof resto at home. We will walk you through removal and installation, with tips along the way to help you produce killer results. We used a very clean '63 Chevy Nova Wagon as our guinea pig for the work. This car has way more bows in it than most coupes and is a bit more open for us to get pictures. If after reading this you are still a little intimidated, either write us a letter/e-mail with your questions or start a thread on the forums at www.superchevy.com. Here is what we started with, a dingy, hole-infested headliner that was so aged you couldn't even clean it without it falling apart. The older headliners were sewn with a cotton thread, which was fine at the time. The problem is cotton thread degrades over time, so even if the vinyl is in good shape, the thread holding it together is probably shot.Here is what we started with, a dingy, hole-infested headliner that was so aged you couldn The Parts To cure our shabby ceiling, we contacted Classic Industries for the headliner and all related parts.The Parts To cure our shabby ceiling, we contacted Classic Industries for the headliner We picked up a light blue headliner made with the proper basket weave pattern. The new headliner is sewn together with a polyester thread that will retain its strength a lot longer than its stock counterpart.We picked up a light blue headliner made with the proper basket weave pattern. The new hea We also ordered a pre-sewn set of sun visors in the same color and pattern. This will allow us to do the job without sitting down at a sewing machine. To complete the restoration and make it easier to see in the interior, we grabbed a set of sun visor mounts, a new dome light base, dome light lens and a very cool LED conversion that required no additional wiring.We also ordered a pre-sewn set of sun visors in the same color and pattern. This will allo Here are all the tools we used to get the job done. If you were planning to restore the entire interior at some point, we would recommend you buy a cheap/used spray gun and fill it with a professional grade contact adhesive like DAP's Weldwood. If all you plan on doing is the headliner, then a can of Permatex Heavy Duty Headliner & Carpet Adhesive or 3M's Super 77 Multipurpose Adhesive will suffice. A heat gun will be used to relax the material, but if you don't have one of these, you can always use the old lady's hair dryer. You will also need a few screwdrivers, a putty knife, scissors or razor blade, and an awl. The awl will be your best friend towards the end of the install so if you don't have one, either buy or make one.Here are all the tools we used to get the job done. If you were planning to restore the en The first thing to do is pull all the trim, sun visors and dome light. You will be using a Phillips screwdriver for everything except the removal of the dome light wiring from the housing. A small flat tip will help you pop out the ends shown in the photo.The first thing to do is pull all the trim, sun visors and dome light. You will be using a With all the trim and stuff out of the way, go ahead and unstick the entire perimeter of the headliner. Go easy at the windshield area. There is a small metal strip screwed to the sheetmetal that the headliner sticks to and you don't want to bend it out of shape.With all the trim and stuff out of the way, go ahead and unstick the entire perimeter of t Now you should have access to the bows that are stuck into small holes drilled in the roof. Most cars have multiple holes for each bow so make sure to keep track of what hole the bow was in. Mark it with a pen or marker if your memory isn't the best. The easiest way to get the bow out is to pull down on the center, which should move the end over enough to pop it out of the hole. Do not remove the bows from the actual headliner yet.Now you should have access to the bows that are stuck into small holes drilled in the roof The center bow on some cars (like this Nova) is held in place by a few sharp tabs poked through the listing. You will need to unbend the tabs to free the bow and a putty knife works pretty good for this task.The center bow on some cars (like this Nova) is held in place by a few sharp tabs poked th Take the old headliner with the bows still intact over to a work area. The reason we recommended leaving the bows in the headliner is because sometimes they are different lengths. Transferring them one by one eliminates the chance of messing up the order. Because the old headliner is pretty delicate, pealing out the bows should not pose a problem.Take the old headliner with the bows still intact over to a work area. The reason we recom Before slipping the bow into the new headliner, clean off all the rust with some Scotch-Brite. This will help the bow slide in much easier and also help when you get to stretching the headliner side to side, but more on that later.Before slipping the bow into the new headliner, clean off all the rust with some Scotch-Br The listings are made longer than the bows so try and get them in the center as best you can. Speaking of which, the center of the headliner itself will have a centerline marked on the back made during the sewing process. You will be using this as a reference line for the install.The listings are made longer than the bows so try and get them in the center as best you c Now take the headliner into the car and start with the bow that attaches to the sharp tabs. Since the tabs prevent the headliner from being stretched side-to-side, you will need to do it as you go. Punch the center tab through the listing, then stretch the headliner to the side before sticking the next one through.Now take the headliner into the car and start with the bow that attaches to the sharp tabs With the center bow done, you can pop in the rest of the bows. Remember to put them back in the holes they came out of. If you need to scrunch up the listing to expose the bow go ahead and do so. Then it's time to get sticky: Spray glue along the front and back edges of the roof and the back of the headliner.With the center bow done, you can pop in the rest of the bows. Remember to put them back i Once the glue has tacked up, stretch the headliner forward, keeping the centerline centered, and stick it down.Once the glue has tacked up, stretch the headliner forward, keeping the centerline centere 1 | 2 | » | View Full Article By Calin Head Enjoyed this Post? Subscribe to our RSS Feed, or use your favorite social media to recommend us to friends and colleagues!