Scandinavian SL-C build

Johan

Supporter
Spent today and yesterday completing the exhaust system. Right side is very tight, muffler to framerail and transmission is just 8-10mm at some areas. I have the Flowmaster DXB and they aren`t the smallest ones, but others have used them so I thought it`s doable. They are just tack welded for now. It will take some serious heat shielding, specially around the shifter cables. I haven´t decided weather to wrap or ceramic cote them or both.
 

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Johan

Supporter
As you can see I made a second access hole in the inner fenders, I was a little optimistic and thought I could reach the bolts to the splitter, but no way, so one more lid it is. After a lot of trimming I used Vuduglu to glue them to the clam, it`s a fast curing glue You can use for pretty much anything.
After that I smothed the edges with FG bondo. It stiffens up the front clam a lot.
Time for a brake.
 

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Roger Reid

Supporter
Very nice workmanship on the exhaust as well as the entire build. You will have a fine car when you are done.
 

Joel K

Supporter
Lookin good Johan, I have a question about Fiberglass Bondo. Is there a particular brand you recommend and does it need to be sprayed in Gelcoat if your are going to paint that area?
 

Johan

Supporter
Lookin good Johan, I have a question about Fiberglass Bondo. Is there a particular brand you recommend and does it need to be sprayed in Gelcoat if your are going to paint that area?
Joel,
The brand I use most of the time is Plastic Padding only because it’s the easiest for me to get,(the hardware store is only 10 minutes away). I don’t know the english name on it but i think it’s what you call ”kittenhair” , pretty much regular bondo with a lot of shopped glass fiber in it. You should have regular bondo on top before primer and paint.
 

Joel K

Supporter
Joel,
The brand I use most of the time is Plastic Padding only because it’s the easiest for me to get,(the hardware store is only 10 minutes away). I don’t know the english name on it but i think it’s what you call ”kittenhair” , pretty much regular bondo with a lot of shopped glass fiber in it. You should have regular bondo on top before primer and paint.

Thanks Johan
 
Joel - not sure how much you know about fiberglassing so my apologies if this is already obvious to you.

I haven’t tried the bondo branded fiberglass stuff, I’ve been using a local supplier for resin and I buy in bulk so it’s cheaper. Here’s what I’ve been using:

Polyester resin + MEKP + cab-o-sil to make a paste. Then I add either milled or chopped glass fibers. The chopped stuff measures about 0.25” long and you use it to build up material quickly or for bridging gaps - such as if you were bonding and filling gaps between the body panel and wheel liners. Generally the finish on chopped glass reinforced resin isn’t very nice so you wouldn’t want to use it in areas that will be visible.

Otherwise you can add milled glass - basically glass dust. This creates a much finer paste and you can finish this to a much nicer surface, good enough to primer then paint or requires very little bondo to smooth. You can use this to bridge large gaps as well but you just need to use more material to do so. The chopped glass creates a thicker compound and requires less material to bridge gaps.

I haven’t used gel coat in any of the modifications I’ve made, it’s not very strong and doesn’t play well if you’re trying to finish a vertical surface, it’ll just run. Mixing cab-o-sil with resin makes it stiff enough so you can apply it anywhere - vertical or upside down and it’ll keep its shape.

If I were making a new part in a mold I’d start with gelcoat then add fiberglass to create the part. Gel coat gives the easiest surface to sand and prep for finishing but I’ve never tried using it on areas of the body I’ve modified, just when making something new like a scoop.
 

Joel K

Supporter
Joel - not sure how much you know about fiberglassing so my apologies if this is already obvious to you.

I haven’t tried the bondo branded fiberglass stuff, I’ve been using a local supplier for resin and I buy in bulk so it’s cheaper. Here’s what I’ve been using:

Polyester resin + MEKP + cab-o-sil to make a paste. Then I add either milled or chopped glass fibers. The chopped stuff measures about 0.25” long and you use it to build up material quickly or for bridging gaps - such as if you were bonding and filling gaps between the body panel and wheel liners. Generally the finish on chopped glass reinforced resin isn’t very nice so you wouldn’t want to use it in areas that will be visible.

Otherwise you can add milled glass - basically glass dust. This creates a much finer paste and you can finish this to a much nicer surface, good enough to primer then paint or requires very little bondo to smooth. You can use this to bridge large gaps as well but you just need to use more material to do so. The chopped glass creates a thicker compound and requires less material to bridge gaps.

I haven’t used gel coat in any of the modifications I’ve made, it’s not very strong and doesn’t play well if you’re trying to finish a vertical surface, it’ll just run. Mixing cab-o-sil with resin makes it stiff enough so you can apply it anywhere - vertical or upside down and it’ll keep its shape.

If I were making a new part in a mold I’d start with gelcoat then add fiberglass to create the part. Gel coat gives the easiest surface to sand and prep for finishing but I’ve never tried using it on areas of the body I’ve modified, just when making something new like a scoop.

Thanks Cam for the explanation. The reason I ask is a mere 38 years ago when I was 19 and did body work on my 68 Corvette the general approach to fiberglass repair was not to use Bondo to finish the fiberglass. The Bondo at the time did not adhere well to fiberglass and would sperate due to the flexing of the body. We only used polyester resin and glass and sanded it smooth, then always gel coated the surface so the fibers would not pop through the paint. Looks like the materials have vastly improved and no need to Gelcoat.

By the way, I really enjoy and have read you blog multiple times. You have an awesome build.
 
I feel like I’m the only guy who’s never worked on a corvette before ;) Dan is a pro vette body guy, wish I had those talents before I started this project!

Thanks for the feedback on the blog, happy to hear someone is reading it!
 

Johan

Supporter
An easy and accurate way to mount the strike post. When the bearclaw is mounted take a 1/2" drillbit and insert it in the claw (closed), make sure it`s perpendicular to the bearclaw and turn it with your fingers just enough to make a mark in the gelcote. Then find a washer with 1/2" OD, measure the ID, let`s say 1/4", now drill a 1/4"pephole where you made the mark. Place the washer in the closed claw and fixate it with clay/wax.
Insert the 1/4" drillbit through the pephole and washer, sharp side into the door. Put some clay/wax where the strike post will mount and close and fixate the door exactly where it will finally sit, then gently push the drillbit from the inside into the clay and you will have a perfect indent to drill/mount the post. I did this on both doors and got it right first time.
 

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Joel K

Supporter
Thanks for posting, this approach should be included in the build manual. Very clever Johan.
 

Johan

Supporter
Exterior door locks completed. I used the stock slotted push rod from the Miata lock and connected it to a small balljoint, that way the exterior handle will not move when the door is opened with the interior handle. I haven`t decided which interior handle to use so they will be mounted at a later stage.
 

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Johan

Supporter
The tail lights are also fabricated. I used my normal tecnique. Started with cutting out the holes then used tape and release agent on the lights and FG paste to fixate them in the cutouts. I mounted them on a aluminium angle to get them inline and straight. After that a couple of layers of FG mat on the back side.
Electrical systems are now almost completed exept the licens plate light. Any hint what LP lights to use?
 

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Johan

Supporter
I made hangers to the mufflers out of 1,5mm stainless steel, they are
mounted to the rear clam hinge below the muffler. The clearance between the muffler and shifter cables was not to my likeing so I cut off the corner of the muffler.
It will be welded when I get my new Tig welder delivered. My old Kemppi is close to 30 years old now. Should have bought a new before I started with the car.
 

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Johan

Supporter
There is a chance the fender vents will be damaged due to rocks being thrown up by the tires, so I made two molds just in case. I ran out of packing tape so I went to the local hardware store and picked up a new roll, it was a different brand that obviously didn`t like my release agent. The flange was all wrinklish, so I had to use a lot of gelcote filler to smooth out them.
Then a got the brilliant idea to try the resin infusion method. I called the guys at Easy Composite in the UK for advice, they said a fender vent is kind of a difficult part to start with. I now agree with them.
The thing is the lengh of the vent differs of more than 80mm in the center compared to the edges due to the louvers so it`s very hard to stretch/crimp the carbon that much, maybe prepreg had been easier. I think the infusion is a superb method on parts that has smoother corners, it`s quite easy to do.
 

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Johan

Supporter
J-hinge and gasstrut.
The template for the gas strut in the build manual is not correct. I think it`s for a 12" strut (as of Rumbles build log), mine is 15.5" (ball to ball) as delivered with the car. I ended up buying new ones anyway, 13.5" long and I had them filled to 610N, approximatly 140lb.
The door didn`t open as much as I wanted it to, so I modified the J-hinge by drilling and tapping a new hole about 3/4" further up towards the heimjoint and enlarged the hinge opening a bit. I also grinded the bracket some. The limiting factor is now the outer top bolt holding the hinge bracket. This mod should not be done without strengthening the area around the hinge bracket. I made a 3mm SS plate between the FG and the bracket.
The strut clears the chassi and HVAC lines open and closed.
When it comes to the heim joint, the longer you have it the better. I started out in the middle (14 turns-28 total if I remember correct) and from there another 3 turns out, this not only makes the door open more, it also helps clear the front of the door not hitting the top/aft of the clam.
On the 5th picture you can see the marked line where I planned to grind the door for clearance, that`s a whole lot, but 3 turns on the heim joint made this much difference, it now clears the clam without the planned grinding.
 

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Joel K

Supporter
J-hinge and gasstrut.
The template for the gas strut in the build manual is not correct. I think it`s for a 12" strut (as of Rumbles build log), mine is 15.5" (ball to ball) as delivered with the car. I ended up buying new ones anyway, 13.5" long and I had them filled to 610N, approximatly 140lb.
The door didn`t open as much as I wanted it to, so I modified the J-hinge by drilling and tapping a new hole about 3/4" further up towards the heimjoint and enlarged the hinge opening a bit. I also grinded the bracket some. The limiting factor is now the outer top bolt holding the hinge bracket. This mod should not be done without strengthening the area around the hinge bracket. I made a 3mm SS plate between the FG and the bracket.
The strut clears the chassi and HVAC lines open and closed.
When it comes to the heim joint, the longer you have it the better. I started out in the middle (14 turns-28 total if I remember correct) and from there another 3 turns out, this not only makes the door open more, it also helps clear the front of the door not hitting the top/aft of the clam.
On the 5th picture you can see the marked line where I planned to grind the door for clearance, that`s a whole lot, but 3 turns on the heim joint made this much difference, it now clears the clam without the planned grinding.

Johan, very nice work. I really like the way your doors open and don’t show the struts. Is there anyway you could make a paper template and scan it in to a document for others to use? Or perhaps provide some measurements so I can place the hole in the same location. If not, no worries, I can figure it out but eliminating the guesswork would be greatly appreciated.
 

Johan

Supporter
Joel, I’m planning to take the spider off at least one more time, when I do, I’ll make an accurate template and post it.
It might be a couple of weeks before that happens though.
If you are in a hurry, it’s quite easy to do without a template, just place the door fully open the way you want it with the gas strut connected with the balls joints installed and make an arc on the chassi using the lower joint/stud. Then close the door and try to estimate the stroke/lenght closed and make an new arc, the intersection will be your hole for the lower stud. It’s not too
important where you mount it as long as it is along the open-arc. I placed mine where I got as little angle change on the strut as possible.
If you want zero pressure on the hinge both open and closed, it will be where the two arcs intersects with strut extended both open and closed, but that will most likely put the stud hole on the vertical chassi member. On the passenger side it is close to impossible due to all cooling and HVAC lines.
 

Joel K

Supporter
Thanks Johan, not in a hurry at all. My SLC is on order, but just reviewing all the build threads and planning out the aspects I’d like to incorporate. If you can make a template that would be great. And thanks for a more detailed explanation. Your build is looking fantastic.
 
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Johan

Supporter
Rear window.
I had been thinking a lot which route to take when mounting the rear window/vent. There are several ways to do it, but after measuring the thickness of both the lexan and the CF vent together it was clear to me. The thickness is the same as the distans between the body surface and the flange.
So what I did was to cut holes in the window to get the vent in it, i.s.o cutting off approximatly 8" on each side. I then hid the screws under the vents with only 4 screws visible.
I made several tests on scrap lexan which type of adhesive to use for the screws and finally decided to go with SuperSteel (PlasticPadding). Together with VuDuGlu it stood out among the rest of the test adhesive. I had to really smash them with a hammer to get the screws loose. It was the temp rating that made me to go with SS over the Vuduglu, it`s rated to max 315C and continous 120C.
The window and vents are now completely flush with the body.
I also strengthened the rear clam around the window with 10mm foam and CSM before cutting the hole.
 

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