Movie Madness

Spoiler Alert!

I don’t like going to the cinema. I normally go to the cinema with friends. This normally means we arrive late, at peak hours. Which normally means sitting nearer the front, straining your neck (and eyeball) which isn’t aided by the fact that the film selection picked by the group normally turns out to be pretty bad: The Lego Movie, Deadpool, Transformers: Age of Extinction, to name a few

But last Thursday, in lieu of going to a lecture that I needed to go to: a very stressful one, I decided to head down to my local theatre. The decision was made in less than a minute, and I didn’t think much about which movie to see. When I got there, I decided on Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – cinema 1, screening 1:50PM, November 17 (it helped that there weren’t any alternatives unless one were to wait). I treasure the Harry Potter series, however have always thought that the movies were boring and bad, even though I thought the actors that played the characters were well cast. And quite frankly I had no high hopes for the Fantasic Beasts movie.

It turns out I was wrong. For fans of the Harry Potter movie or not, it’s a great standalone movie. It’s interesting, fast paced, and really captures the world of magic – something that never got to me in the original Harry Potter movies. The movie had so much charm to it, from a convincing performance from Eddie Redmayne (Newt) to the fluid (and natural) use and application of magic by wizards. The one sore thumb was Grindewald as played by Johnny Depp. While I can appreciate his other performances, the gelled, blond hair, and thick, unintelligible accent were in contrast to the rest of the film which stuck to the 1930s theme very smartly.

This was my first time as a solo movie goer, and it was, refreshing to say the least. There’s something very special about seeing a movie in a theatre: the dimmed lights, the lack of distractions, the booming sound system. Best of all was that I was one of maybe three or four others that turned up to watch the movie – it really felt like the theatre as mine!

Eager to use my concession benefits, and having enjoyed the delightful Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, I decided to go the cinemas again this Wednesday, solo. I also decided to movie hop – buy one ticket, and watch another movie without leaving the theatre. Movie hopping is a bit of a grey area – you run the risk of getting asked to leave, and you are technically trespassing, but this is for you to decide on. I started the day of with Doctor Strange – 10:30am. It was an okay movie but much like any other Marvel movie, it didn’t leave me amazed, and while interesting, the story seemed formulaic. That being said, it was enjoyable, and a great start to the day. (One last thing I need to add: Deadpool gimme back my $15, that movie seriously stunk, I felt the comedy was too forced, too ‘mainstream’, but alas, I was in the minority in my group who thought this! To each their own.)

After the movie ended, I surreptitiously exited the theatre and checked my phone. Sitting in the hallway, there were three other movies that were on at 12:50pm. Fantastic Beasts, Hacksaw Valley, and Arrival. From very sparse research beforehand, I knew Hacksaw was a war flick, and Arrival an alien flick. While sitting, I observed an older couple make their way into another theatre. Thinking screw it, I’ll watch whatever, I followed suit after using the loo. I was disappointed when the ads ended, and it was apparent it was Hacksaw Valley (as I was hoping I’d get to see Arrival.) However within the first five minutes my disappointed evaporated to be replaced by steadfast attention. The accents (apart from maybe once or twice when Sam Worthington’s Australian accent fell through) were on point. The dude from LoTR – Elrond – was fantastic as the father. I loved the movie – however I would only watch it once – some scenes were truly graphic and horrific. Andrew Garfield played a fantastic Desmond Doss – he completely nailed the part, from the toothy smile to the southern drawl – it was great to see how talented he was, not just a generic actor (which I unfortunately got after seeing The Amazing Spiderman.) All the characters were fleshed out superbly, and you can even sort of understand why Desmond’s father was a drunk – not so much for the alcohol, but because he could forget the war. The war scenes were fantastically horrific. I admit – I didn’t shield my eyes, but I did shield my hearing, the blasts and gatling guns were shaking the cinema. The movie really pulled me in, and it made me rethink about how horrible the World Wars back in 30s-40s would have been (I mean I know they’re horrible but very rarely are the wars visualised so strikingly accompanied by a booming sound system). Just thinking about having to advance against the enemy, knowing full well that there’s a 100% chance you’ll be shot at and a 75% chance you’ll be one of the unlucky bastards that get taken out was truly terrifying. A really great piece of film.

There was only one other movie to hop to after this one. I checked my phone in the foyer, and The Girl on the Train was set for 3:20. I observed someone entering a theatre, and crossed my fingers that this would be the right one. It was! The Girl on the Train follows Rachel (Emily Blunt). The only thing we know about her is that she watches a couple from the train ride everyday The movie is confusing, dark, and disorientating as Rachel tries to process the events that are happening. It was fascinating watching Rachel – a deeply hurt, anxious alcoholic – a very much untrustworthy narrator, piece together the narrative from her own memories and investigation. At times the movie felt slow, but the resolution was definitely worth it.

Today’s Thursday, and I went the cinema again! This time, I had to watch Arrival. It was a thought provoking film, and I thought about it on the 15 minute walk home. While I was confused in the theatre, my walk home cleared up some things. The reference to the weapon was their language. Their language isn’t like English – instead, the language is of another dimension – it allows time to be… to be… structured or encoded into their language – so, mastery of the language, is being able to determine what is to come. Which explains Louise’s ‘flashbacks’ as really been dreams that she has in the alien heptapod language which is what will happen in the future – and also why she breaks up with the physicist – because when they married she knew their daughter would die, but didn’t tell her husband. The reason for the alien’s visit was that their language told them that in 3,000 years they would need Earth, and so they gifted their ‘weapon/language’ to Earth in the hopes that in 3,000 years, the humans and heptapods could surpass the unknown situation. The film is adapted from the short novella ‘Story of Your Life’ and while I found the ideas fascinating, I wanted more from the movie – however I can see why they ended it like they did. I did like and appreciate the fact that they were so restrained when revealing the aliens and the alien’s actions, I do wish that we could have seen more of the impact of humans learning the heptapod’s language, but overall it was a solid movie.

That was my week of movie madness! 5 films, 3 tickets, 7 days. A really pleasant experience for each movie, something that I’ll do again. Movie hopping is quite the experience, for example, to be pulled out of Hacksaw Ridge to the quiet, disorientating world The Girl on the Train is just a really unique movie hopping experience. Also, Kate Beckinsdale in Underworld has the most wickedly provoking and striking voice – the line from the trailer :”I’m not finished with this war” really made me want to see it – oh well, maybe on the next movie hoppin’ adventures.

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Upgrading the Xoom!

The Xoom is an android tablet developed by Motorola. Motorola used to make android tablets back in 2011, however have since moved their focus onto smartphones. The Xoom was the first tablet to be sold with Android 3.0 Honeycomb, and just a few days ago I recently got one! I got it for about $20, it was heavily used and scratched on the back, but the screen and battery were in good order, which is all that matters in my opinion. I’ll do a longer introduction to it in another post, but my first thoughts of the tablet was that it felt really solid and sturdy – it was a bit more chunky width wise, but it felt nice to hold something that didn’t feel as fragile as the really thin plastic tablets that are popular today. The casing is metal and cool to touch, and really gives it a premium feel.

Motorola’s last android version officially for the Xoom was Ice Cream Sandwich, 4.0.4. However, thanks to the tireless efforts of the teams & individuals at XDA Developers, and the fact that Motorola has not locked their bootloader, or done anything to jeopardize the ability to flash properly, the Xoom has enjoyed support over the years, and access to the latest ROMs, such as KitKat, Lollipop and Marshmallow. Which is sadly unlike the Xoom’s older brother, the Xyboard, whose bootlocker remains locked.

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Firstly, this is my first time attempting to do anything more than install the one-click root app on my phone, so these instructions are moreso a reminder to myself, rather than a complete guide to the process. A quick overview of the process is that you will be unlocking your bootloader, flashing a custom recovery, and then from there, flashing a ROM. The ROM I chose was the 4.4 KitKat OmniROM, and it took a few hours, but here’s how I did it:

1.) Turn on your Xoom and find out the exact version. Do this by going to Settings>About Tablet>Model Number. My Xoom had a model number of MZ604 which refers to the wifi version of the Xoom. This is very important as if you flash a ROM that is not meant for your device, it will be bricked! In my case, the codename for the wifi model of the Xoom was ‘wingray’, so that’s the type of ROM I needed to download.

2.) Backup any data on your tablet.

3.) During this entire process, your Xoom must be able to be recognized by your computer, and it must have USB debugging enable. To enable USB debugging, go to Settings>About Tablet>Build Number, and tap on it seven times. Then go to Developer Options>Enable USB Debugging. To make sure your Xoom is recognised by your computer (there should be no need for any manual driver downloading on Windows 7+), go to Settings>Storage>hit the menu icon (3 dots) top right>USB Computer Connection>Select ‘Media Device (MTP)’. Also, please note that you will be rebooting your Xoom a couple of times: sometimes the settings stay, sometimes they don’t. Please ensure that each time your Xoom reboots, you check that USB Debugging and MTP are selected.

4.) The first thing you have to do is unlock the Xoom’s bootloader. There are different ways to do this, the easiest is to install WinDroid (1). Follow the prompts, and select your device as the Xoom. Then, follow the prompts to unlock the bootloader. Do not continue to use the program, it seems to be unable to properly install TWRP on the device. You can try, as I did, and it might work for you. If it doesn’t here’s the other method which I had to find out how to do in step 4.

4.) Download and install the ’15 Second ADB Installer v1.4.3′ (2) It might be the first time you’ve heard of the words ‘ADB’ and ‘Fastboot’. I was really confused as to what these two were, but through research and doing the processes myself, I understand it at a basic level. You know when you hook up your Xoom to your computer, and then you can transfer files over to your Xoom or vice versa. ADB is something like that. ADB is developed by Google Android, and it allows you to ‘talk to the Xoom’ when you connect the Xoom to your computer. Instead of transferring files, you transfer instructions to the Xoom. By ‘talk to the Xoom’ I mean that from your computer you can type in something like ‘reboot’ and the Xoom will reboot.

5.) Next download ‘TWRP 2.6.3.0 BigPart.’ (3) TWRP stands for Team Win Recovery Project. TWRP is a ‘custom recovery’ image for your Xoom. What does that mean? Well, let’s say for example you’d like to do a ‘hard reset.’ To do this on basically every Android device, you will need to reboot the system and enter ‘Recovery Mode.’ From the Recovery Mode, you can do stuff like: install an android update manually, or perform a hard reset. Likewise, when you install TWRP, it replaces the default recovery mode. TWRP has a tonne of features that the default recovery mode doesn’t have, that’s why you need it!

6.) In this step, you will be ‘flashing’ (installing) TWRP onto your Xoom. Once you have installed TWRP it will replace your default recovery mode with an feature full one! Connect your Xoom to your computer, via the generic microUSB cable. Now, earlier on you installed the ’15 Second ADB Installer’ – this is key. Also, make sure you have done everything on step 3 (enabled USB debugging/enabled MTP). Open a command prompt in administrator mode (Windows 7: Home button>Search ‘cmd’>Right click, and select ‘Run as Administrator’). Then, type into the command prompt, “abd reboot bootloader”. Do not include the quotation marks. Hit enter, and your Xoom will reboot. If you have your speakers on, you will hear the USB being unplugged noise. If you get some type of error, there are too many possibilities so you’ll have to Google it – default solution for me is to restart your computer and install the 15 second ADB Installer again.

7.) Once your device reboots to the bootloader, it will now be in ‘fastboot’ mode. It should tell you this (the screen will be mostly black, and it will say something a long the lines of fastboot mode enabled in the top left hand corner.) In ‘Fastboot’ mode, your computer can send instructions (communicate) with your Xoom over the microUSB cable.

8.) Now, in your command prompt, to check whether everything is working as intended, type in “fastboot devices” and press enter. The command prompt should spit out the serial number of the device it is chatting with.

9.) Once you have confirmed everything is fine, it’s time to flash the custom recovery. Type into the command prompt “fastboot flash recovery <location of TWRP.img>”. Now, remember how you downloaded TWRP 2.6.3.0 BigPart? What I like to do is rename that to “twrp.img”. Then, I copy this onto the C:\ directory. That way it’s easy to type C:\twrp.img as the directory. So, for me, what I typed into the command prompt was “fastboot flash recovery c:\twrp.img”. After you have successfully done this (it will be verified on the terminal/command prompt, and on the Xoom’s screen that the installation has been a success), type into command prompt “fastboot reboot”.

10.) One last thing, when it reboots you need to enter recovery mode. This is because you need to enter TWRP once after installation to set it as default. To do this, after typing “fastboot reboot” your Xoom will start to reboot. Wait for the red Motorola logo to appear for about 2 seconds and then press the Volume Down key. IF you reboot back into fastboot mode, simply disconnect the Xoom from your computer, and hold down the Volume Up and Power button. When it reboots this time, wait for the red logo for 2 seconds, than press the down button. It will say something like ‘recovery mode?’, and you need to press the Volume Up key to select.

11.) Now in the TWRP menu (if you get a password required like I did, simply cancel, and follow these instructions), go to Reboot>Reboot into Recovery.

12.) Once you have booted back into recovery for the 2nd time, its time to do some cleaning. Go to wipe and do both an advanced wipe and a factory reset. Note, it’s important you clean everything. You may need to reboot into recovery (top right hand corner, go back to TWRP menu>Reboot>Reboot to recovery) to perform another wipe again.After you’ve done this, to be extra safe, follow the BigPart repartition guide here (4).

13.) Okay, the next step will be installing the custom OmniROM and installing root access (done at the same time). To do this, download OmniROM 4.4.4 – wingray – BigPart (5) Download GApps (6). Download the SuperUser specified on the XDA page (don’t worry about the old version, you can update it once everything’s done, you just need to get it working first.) (7)

14.) To flash the OmniROM, reboot into TWRP/recovery mode once more. Connect your Xoom to the computer with its microUSB cable. To start the process go to TWRP menu>Advanced>ADB Sideload. PLEASE NOTE, you must install the OmniROM first, then GApps, then SuperSU, in that order! Then, remember how you still have that command prompt open from before (you can use a new one if you wish) type into the command prompt “adb sideload <location of omnirom.zip”. Then, “adb sideload <location of gapps.zip”. Then, “adb sideload <location of supersu.zip”. AFTER sideloading the OmniROM.zip over, when you try to sideload the next file (gapps.zip), it might say there’s sometime of error. To resolve this, on the Xoom, go back to the menu>Advanced>ADB Sideload (seems to need a refresh between installing different things.)

14. Continued) So, for me, I relabelled the OmniROM wingray 4.4 file to “omni.zip” for convenience. Similarly, I relabelled the GApps to “gap.zip” and the SuperSU to “super.zip”. Then, I moved it to the C:\ drive. Then, in TWRP I went to Advanced>ADB Sideload and on my computer, in my command prompt, I typed and entered “adb sideload c:\omni.zip”. When I tried to adb sideload gap.zip, there was an error. I went back to the TWRP menu, and then Advanced>ADB Sideload and installed the GApps: “adb sideload c:\gap.zip”. Then finally SuperSU: “adb sideload c:\super.zip”

15.) After this, go back to the main menu, and reboot. Congratulations, you have installed OmniROM 4.4 KitKat wingray BigPart onto your Xoom!

16.) Here are some things I did, after successfully rebooting from TWRP into OmniROM and setting everything up. Sadly, you will have to disable Google Text to Talk which doesn’t work. Also, you can now upgrade the SuperSU to the latest version.

17.) That’s it! You now have a very capable Xoom. Here are my thoughts on using 4.4 on the Xoom. I now have all of the features I missed in ICS on my Xoom! Works well and no performance issues or bugs when switching to using the Nova Launcher. Performance wise, the Xoom can struggle opening big webpages – but to be fair, I have access to an iPad 4 that I need to use regularly, and the iPad 4 can’t switch tabs at all, because the page keeps on getting refreshes which is not a problem on the Xoom – so, yes, it could be better, but from a 5 year old tablet it’s really not too bad. Audio/HD video playback is smooth, and no hiccups. Gaming wise… I don’t game on my tablet, I do a bit on a my computer though. That being said, I use my Xoom for educational apps/office apps, and they work fine for my purposes. So, overall, I am exceptionally happy with my Xoom and all that I’ve learnt, and thankful to all the contributions, big and small, across countless sites that helped me.

References
(1) http://forum.xda-developers.com/motorola-xoom/development/tool-windroid-universal-android-toolkit-t3066994
(2) http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?p=48915118#post48915118
(3) http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2580256 (It’s under the Install heading, and you need to click to show the content.)
(4) http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2506997
(5) http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2580256 (It’s under the Download heading.)
(6) http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2580256 (It’s under the GApps heading – anyone of the three is fine.)
(7) http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2580256 (It’s under the Download Root heading.)

Boost Nero and Alcatel Pixi 3: a quick look

First Impressions
The Pixi has a clean, plain, black design. The back cover is made from matte plastic – charcoal shade – with the Pixi logo debossed. It definitely keeps with the modern phone appearance, although the phone’s thickness and bezel around the screen differentiate it from more expensive models.     
The Nero takes us back to 2008 sharing great resemblance to the iPhone 3GS – complete with rounded edges, and silver/metallic strip around the phone. The back cover is made from shiny, fingerprint attracting plastic, with very small inverse dimples that make for an interesting feel.

Performance, Screen and UI
The Nero and Pixi both run on a  dual core 1Ghz processor with 500MB of RAM. Both phones feature a TFT touchscreen, however the Pixi has a much higher resolution (4″ at 800×480 vs 3.5″ at 480×320.) The TFT panels mean that there is a limited viewing angle – this is most noticeable if you watch a clip on either phone that features a dark scene – even at the perfect angle, around the corners, the dark scene will display as a purple/inverted mess. For normal browsing (black text on white/light colours), the TFT panels are more than adequate at a range of viewing angles.
Performance wise, the Nero is very snappy. There is no lag when swiping to a different homepage, and a slight pause when opening an app. The Pixi is not as snappy as the Nero, and there is a noticeable lag when flicking through the phone’s homepage or opening an app. (This is definitely due to the larger resolution of the Pixi.) App wise – both phones can handle to a good level simple games (i.e. the ones that are about 20-50MB downloads), and apps like Duolingo.
The Nero runs on 4.2 Jelly Bean and the Pixi runs on 4.4 KitKat. I haven’t experienced any problems with either OS. While I prefer Jelly Bean because it is a very simple and plain UI, I have to admit that KitKat is aesthetically a step up.

Camera
The image quality on both cameras leave much to be desired – had they been purchased for much more. However the fact that they were only $20 a pop, and they have a camera that can take okay-ish pics is amazing. Quality is ‘mobile’ webcam level, and both phones can take practical pictures – the stuff that your Samsung S7 or iPhone 6s will probably be taking (and not the great scenery shots you normally see!) – i.e. taking a quick snap of a document or a picture of something instore.

Conclusion
I picked up the Nero at $24.50 from Big W and a couple of months later picked up the Pixi for $19. The Pixi can be rooted easily, so I keep most non-essential apps on there. The Nero only has 4GB of memory, and is hard to root, so not a lot of space for apps. Most of the time, you get what you pay – and this is no different for the Nero and Pixi. Both phones fit my need perfectly – messaging/web browsing, so I think they are a steal if you use them for what they are!

Building a Computer

Part 1 – Choosing Components

The best part about building a computer is that you can choose your own parts. So if you know that you don’t need a powerful system – you’re just going to be word processing/surfing the net/watching TV shows – then, you can channel money away from a GPU that you probably won’t be using, to a really nice case. Similarly, for a budget gaming system you would probably prioritise a kickass GPU over a fancy case. In addition to this level of customisability, you also end up saving a few bucks as well! (And it takes an evening.)

You will need:

CPU (Processor)
Motherboard

Graphics Card
RAM
Case
Internal Hard Drive
PSU (Power Supply Unit)

That’s it! These are the core components in any computer build. Buying these components from your local computer hardware store will allow you to fix up a system (additional items needed – a screwdriver! all wires are included with the components). You may not even need a graphics card – most AMD and Intel processors come with onboard graphics that are very capable – only buy graphics card if you are 3D rendering (AutoCAD)/playing modern games, and want to play the modern games at a high resolution and quality. If you do a quick YouTube of Intel’s or AMD’s onboard graphics (e.g. Intel HD Graphics from the Celeron/Pentium Haswell Intel Processors) you will find that they can often run modern games at lower settings/resolution. Extras for a PC build include: 5.25″ bay devices such as a DVD player/or card reader with additional USB outlets; PCI express devices such as wireless capabilities, or more USB3 headers; aftermarket CPU coolers (Intel and AMD both provide stock coolers with their consumer processors.)

Recommendations

CPU: I recently purchased a G1840 (a 4th generation/Haswell Intel processor) and I was pleasantly surprised with how fast operations were! If you are a hard core gamer, choose a Haswell (not Skylake!) i5 or i7 processor – as modern games are moving towards quad core CPUs. (The reason for not going Skylake – or atleast not now – is that most games have been optimised for Haswell; this will change as Skylake becomes more prevalent.)

Motherboard: MSI, Asus, AsRock, Gigabyte.. all good brands, all have horror stories and die hard supporters – the choice is yours! Luckily with warranties, even if you do get a bad egg, you can get it replaced. Remember that your CPU must have the same socket as your motherboard – e.g. LGA 1150 (Haswell 4th gen Intel) or FM3+ (FX series AMD).

GPU: You need this if you are playing new games at 1080p/60fps/ultra settings. If you are not, than Intel or AMD’s integrated graphics will be fine! For example, the Intel Celeron G1840 Haswell (which is a very budget orientated processor) has Intel HD Graphics included. It handles League of Legends fine (60fps at lower resolutions/medium settings). It also handles Bioshock, and other older games really well. It can play 1080p videos with no stutters – awesome stuff!

RAM: 8GB of DDR3. That’s all you need. Not much difference between DDR4/DDR3/1333MHz/2400MHz/8GB/16GB. 8GB is the sweet spot for RAM – get 16GB if you need 25 years of future proofing!

Case: Generally I look for number of front USB ports/looks/options for fans – up to you!

PSU: If you don’t have a graphics card, you can probably escape with most PSUs or even case+PSU combos – if you don’t draw much power, your PSU won’t be stressed, and it won’t die. If you need reliability/you will be drawing a lot of power (as is the case if you have a gaming graphics card), than look for a good PSU, i.e. ones with ALL quality/Japanese capacitors.

Internal Hard Drive: SSDs vs HDDs, the choice is yours! I find that both types can be very snappy – lag is most often due to a messy computer/old CPU/too little RAM.

Part 2 – Building your Computer

This is the video guide that I used. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0bUghCx9iso

Only note to make is to install CPU+stock CPU cooler before putting it into the case, so that you can check whether your CPU cooler is properly affixed by looking at the back of the motherboard (as watched here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5qczGR4KMnY)

And that’s it – good luck!

 

Repairing the headliner on a Mitsubishi Executive V6 TJ (2000)

A sagging headliner looks bad and is a hazard because it also blocks your rear view vision. The only long term solution is to remove the headliner from the car, and replace the foam backed fabric. It’s a simple job, and requires a couple of hours of time (plus about 24hours to dry), and you’ll need to purchase some materials listed below.

Materials needed:

  • 2× cans of Permatex spray adhesive for headliners/carpets (you can get this at Autobarn for $20 a can) is the one I recommend, works a treat, (the more expensive version is from 3M) or any heat resistant contact adhesive that can bond the foam and cardboard headliner
  • foam backed fabric/headliner material – Daley’s is the place to go (thanks eggrogue), just rock up on a weekday at working hours, and ask for about 2 meters of headlining material. You can use other materials but this is the real stuff. I got 2 meters ($80), and lengthwise, once attached I had a lot of unused area to play with, so you can definitely cut it down.

Here’s a before pic:

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Start by removing the rubber weatherstrip seal from each of the four doors, starting at the bottom.

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Now remove the interior trims. Generally for Magna’s just give the trims a tug. Make sure to apply an even force when prying off the trims. Take off the front trims completely, and the trims near the seatbelt and back can just be partially taken off. sshot-61

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Now, remove everything else attached to the headliner (the light, the hand grippy things above the window, the ‘sun visor’ mirror thing, and optionally though recommended the rear view mirror.) (As always be careful with electricity stuff, if you really want you can disconnect the battery, although I reckon it should be right as long as you’re careful.)

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Once you’ve done this, you’re headliner is free, and can be carried out of the car. Please note that firstly, some of the trims you’ve unclipped may still be holding the headlining up. Don’t be afraid to bend the headliner slightly to get it pass the trims as it’s cardboard (but fragile, so care!).

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Carefully pull the headliner out of the car. This step isn’t shown, but you should try and bend it as minimally as possible, while carrying it out  from the front door.

It’s time to prep your headliner for redoing. First, rip of the old fabric from your headliner. Then, using a slightly damp cloth, or brush (a normal house sweeping brush will be fine, but the hairs of the brush will be clogged up by 10 year old foam and glue) remove all of the foam.

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Now to glue the new headlining material on. First read the instructions on the spray can. You will need two cans for this part. One method (the one I used) is to lay the headliner fabric on top of the headliner, and then peel back half of the fabric. Then, using one complete bottle of spray on adhesive for each half, I did one layer of glue on the half of the headliner. I waited 5 mins, then applied another layer of glue to the headliner over the top of the other one. By then, I had just enough glue left to put on a layer of glue on the foam itself.

Note: the contact adhesive grips on touch, so it would have been wiser to get a mate rather then do it by yourself (as I did) and then one person gently lower the material down, while the other gently smooths the material over the headliner’s contours.

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After gluing on the fabric, leave it for the night (best case scenario 24 hours for the bond to achieve full strength) to be installed the next day. Now is a great time to clean the car’s interior, as when I took out the headliner, the foam got everywhere.

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The next morning: first cut to shape the headlining fabric – leave a bit of extra leeway as extra fabric can always be tucked neatly under the trims. Use a knife and scissors to cut out where the attachments should be. I gave my headliner a quick clean before installing it as during the night, the wind was stronger than expected and blew a bit of dirt/leaves on it (be careful not to press the fabric, as it’s foam lined so it will create an impression).

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Here’s the finished product.

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Even though I messed up the gluing on fabric part (I didn’t really smooth the contours where the sun visors, etc. should be, leaving air holes), you can see that visually, these are hidden when you install the sun visors and hand grippers. Total cost was $150 although if I had used 2 Permatex spray contact adhesive cans instead of one can and a 3M, and used a cheaper fabric/less fabric I could have got it down to maybe ~$100. It took a couple of hours, but I learnt more about the car, and that was a big plus. It’s definitely an easy project to freshen up your car over the weekend, and make it look new again! Also cheers to the aussiemagna and whirlpool forums where amazing users posted their own guides.