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Colors for Dash Knobs, Steering Columns & Wheels

September 26, 2010 | Troubleshooting & Repair

By Tim Herman and Norm Miller

Tim Herman: Here are the color formulations for the Grey and Beige knobs, steering wheels, etc. This is for Akzo Nobel/Sikkens acrylic enamel. Used with the catalyst the applied product is very durable and to my eyes dead-on with nice original (albeit old) parts. Your results may differ!

BEIGE Quantity 0.30 Liter
Product: ABP P1
ColorCode: 426B3
Akzo Code: 426B3
Color Map: 426B3
Q120 276.8 g
Q326 0.1 g
Q160 1.0 g
Q437 10.3 g
Q065 86.4 g

GREY Quantity 0.30 Liter
Product: ABP P1
ColorCode: 419G4
Akzo Code: 419G4
Color Map: 419G4
Q110 204.8 g
Q652 1.2 g
Q348 1.6 g
Q160 14.0 g
Q328 25.7 g
Q065 76.0 g

Norm Miller: I found the closest match in rattle cans to be Do it Best Rust Coat Enamel, sku 790095 Gloss Sand 1018 (1-6) , manufactured by Do it Best Corp, Ft Wayne, Indiana.

[Editor] With the change in Sep. 1959 to the 356B model, those parts were all painted semi-gloss black. During 356A production they were a shade of beige (a light "tan", see photo at right) or gray. Gray may have been used primarily on red or black cars, but much less often than beige. NLA/Stoddard stocks a rattle can of beige paint that is a good color match for 356A and earlier steering wheels and steering columns (part number NLA 095 060 00). The beige color of the dash knobs, steering wheel, column, and turn signal housing often did not match exactly, probably because those parts came from different suppliers who didn't use the same paint forumla. Most restorers paint all those parts the same color. 1955 model year and earlier 356s had semi-gloss or gloss black steering columns and turn signal housings. Rich Peters notes that, "the gloss black in the old days was really not a "wet gloss" look. I recommend using a 'rattle can' gloss black, leave in the sun all day, you'll have the correct color."