SLC Body Fitment

Rich Kruger

Member
GT40s Supporter
#1
I'm at the point where body fitment and alignment is important to finish installing the remaining equipment for my Go Kart stage. BUT it is very tight to get the rocker panels under the aluminum lower body pan. I know pan/body/skirt is the recommended sequence. The car is an early (C of O # RCR0136) car. The fiberglass tub was purchased later than the initial purchase. Has anyone else run into this? I'm sure forcing it with pry bars will be a disaster. It looks like the tub doesn't allow the body to sit down far enough. There isn't much of a lip in the door openings where it contacts the tub. Before I sand the bottom of the tub and start shaving the body contact points I would like the consensus of builders experaince Has any one done a body/pan/skirt install?
 

Howard Jones

Member
GT40s Supporter
#2
Ya well I didn't do it the recommended way. I placed my center section on top of the chassis side wings then sandwiched the side spliters between the chassis and the body. This didn't create any future problems with the body fit as everything else is located off the center section.

I may have not been privy to the recommended way because I have the 24th chassis and realistically it was delivered at about chassis number 16-18. Not a lot of them together at that point.

Having said all that the important thing to consider is how the tires fit in the body AND GETTING A GOOD WINDSHIELD FIT. Set the suspension up with no camber and 0 degree toe at 4.5 inches R and 4.0 inches F ride height. Put the tires on and place the center section to best fit of tires. Do this with car on ride height blocks and no springs. Move the tires through their movement. Up and down at the rear and at the front full lock to lock at full bump and full droop.

Now you know where to place the body where you have no tire interference problems. Use C Clamps to hold the placement of the center section.

Now before you go and bolt everything down. CHECK THE WINDSHIELD FOR FIT!!! MAKE THE BODY FIT THE WINDSHIELD NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND but make it fit now!

I am saying that the windshield cannot be altered in shape ANY! It WILL break. Others have found out the hard way.

Once the tires and windshield fit go on to the doors. Once the windshield (fits well but not glued on) and doors are on and work good have a beer you deserve it. Everything else can be altered to fit the chassis with the center section located so that the tires and windshield fit and the doors are working. Now bolt things down.

Please don't wait to the end to try and fit the windshield. Did I say that enough?

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
 
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Dan Carter

Member
GT40s Supporter
#3
Rich.....for what it’s worth

Mine is a 2015 model. My body sits on the aluminum side wings with the side runners under the aluminum wings. The way my side runners were countouired they fit nicely below it all. I ran a metal strip under the length of the side splitters to add some strength.
 

Rich Kruger

Member
GT40s Supporter
#4
Howard your advice will be very useful. I understand the importance of fitting the windshield first. You and Dan make me feel better if that’s how I will need to fit the body on top of the pan.
 
#5
Howard, as a potential buyer the windshield fitment issue has cooled my enthusiasm. I figure on a car of this value and initial cost, the windshield should fit like a glove. I have heard about this multiple times so what has to be done to correct the fitment issue? Glass doesn't bend as was pointed out by Eik M. If this is a common problem why hasn't RCR corrected this or is it an installer issue? So what is the best way to install the windshield? I personally don't want a mar resistant lexan windshield. Thanks in advance. Mike
 

Howard Jones

Member
GT40s Supporter
#6
Mike, The windshield installation isn't a design problem. It is a required process that is a bit different on every car. As stated above it needs to be addressed during the fitment of the body and not at the end of the build.

I built a race car and so I didn't WANT a glass windshield but I could see what was going to be required as I built my car. You will too, Go on the wicky and ask for help, everyone wants to help. All these cars have their areas of the build that people like less than other parts but you just work through them and take some satisfaction from the experience.

No fiberglass kit car......NONE doesn't have this process to complete. This is not a tab A into slot B kind of thing. It's a trail and error custom fitment kind of thing. You have a few choices, figure it out by giving it a try and then ask others with experience on this forum for some tips, try them and keep trying until you get it. OR pay someone to do it. IMHO as far as kit cars go RCR has much above average body fit quality. I have looked at lots believe me. The first car I built , my GT40 (GTD) took me 8 months to do the bodywork, nearly everyday, hours a day. SLC's are good enough that I think one's bodywork can be put together in a few weeks and that's good in the kit car world. Fiberglass isn't stamped steel panels and is flexible by nature so it takes some trial and error to put the car together. That's just the way it is. Sorry...…………….
 
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Rich Kruger

Member
GT40s Supporter
#7
The other factor of the windshield fitment is the fact that a fiberglass body no matter of design or quality is flexible and during it being off the chassis it may slightly deform. I personally and quite a few other builders on this forum have built a simple wooden storage buck to support it while not on the chassis. Also in some builds builders have shimmed the body in such a way that the windshield fit has been nearly perfect. Its all in the details.
 

Dan Carter

Member
GT40s Supporter
#8
If you have the skills, you can adjust the body contour to fit the windshield with some fiberglass and kitty hair. No stretching the body or need to bend glass (break it). I chose to recontour the lower edges of the window pillars and the windshield fits perfect. Any body distortion will make door figment a struggle. Several options available from several builds.
 
#9
Mike - it’s hard to gauge how sensitive you are/would be to things that don’t quite line up perfectly. I have a pretty extreme level of OCD and I really had to put it in check - I just didn’t/don’t have the skill level to finish this type of project to a level that would be considered OEM.

With my very rudimentary glass skills I didn’t want to totally cluster screw the corner so I opted to go the easy way out - I simply built up my seal and let the glass sit however it was going to. It means the glass pushes out about 1/4” on my driver side and about 1/8” on my passenger. I painted my windshield surround in black, same color as my windshield adhesive. Things blend so well at the corners that you’d be hard pressed to see the mismatch, even when you know to look for it.

If you have a pro glass installer do it they may have the right kind of border seal that it would all get blended in as well. When I was having my windshield chip (due to a rock) repaired, my glass guy looked at me and shook his head - said he had stuff that would have made the fit perfect and blended in.

I think the windshield fit has been blown a bit out of proportion, but that opinion is coming from someone who doesn’t expect a car to be perfect to the T.
 
#10
Cam, I think I have just a tad of OCD myself- I fabricate for a living and my standards are very high.People pay me for what I do and I don't have to offer any apologies. I spoke with one owner who is having a fiberglass guy cut the a-pillars apart to create a good fit. I am not looking to re-engineer Fran's product, My expectations as a customer far exceed the GTM. Just thought I would throw this out there since it was on my mind. Thanks for the replies guys!
 
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#11
I cover the a-pillar issue pretty heavily in my blog. I was able to get it looking pretty good for someone who’s never touched fiberglass before I started this project. A pro guy like Dan can get it perfect.

If your composite skills are up to the level of someone’s like Dan then you can expect a car to the level I think you’re alluding to. I know we spoke on the phone but I forget now what you said your comfort level is with fiberglass. But don’t expect a perfect fit out of any panel, fiberglass, carbon, poly, or glass. As Howard says, not the way it works in the world of component cars, regardless of manufacturer.

Sorry Rich - a bit of a derail on your thread but I think Howard got you covered pretty well. I also installed my spider so it’s sitting on the aluminum side sills with my side rockers located below the aluminum. I think that’s the way to go and is how Allan does it for every car he’s built.
 
#12
Rich.....for what it’s worth

Mine is a 2015 model. My body sits on the aluminum side wings with the side runners under the aluminum wings. The way my side runners were countouired they fit nicely below it all. I ran a metal strip under the length of the side splitters to add some strength.
that's pretty much how everybody does it - body/aluminum side extension/sideskirt


Howard, as a potential buyer the windshield fitment issue has cooled my enthusiasm. I figure on a car of this value and initial cost, the windshield should fit like a glove. I have heard about this multiple times so what has to be done to correct the fitment issue? Glass doesn't bend as was pointed out by Eik M. If this is a common problem why hasn't RCR corrected this or is it an installer issue? So what is the best way to install the windshield? I personally don't want a mar resistant lexan windshield. Thanks in advance. Mike
you don't want a glass windshield - heavy, difficult to install, seems to be prone to randomly cracking

the polycarb windshield is perfect - i've had mine since 2008 w/o any issues and it just drops into place, perfect fit and any issues can be addressed with trimming, just don't run wipers. and very easy to install - 4 #6 screws in the corners and you're done

it's not mr10 lexan, it's polycarb with a special coating (the coating makes it function similar to mr10 lexan - i.e., it's not marr happy like regular polycarb)
 

Dan Carter

Member
GT40s Supporter
#13
There isn’t anything daunting about fiberglass work. The difference in a “pro” (I’m really not) and novice is really how much sandpaper each one uses LOL. There isn’t any mistake you can not sand away, so I wouldn’t let inexperience deter anyone from adjusting A pillars or any other part to fit the way you want. Be patient as you build it up, wear long sleeves and latex gloves while you sand (very itchy) but take your time. A little secret, use paint sticks cut to size as sanding blocks on small areas, sanding blocks for larger areas. Your hand will have unequal pressure as you sand and can be wavy. Very thin Bondo top coat for fine tuning. Use a guide coat to help you find high and low spots. Air tools help a lot, it’s an excuse to by some.....”but honey I need them for the car”.........

Glass windshield or poly may be dictated by your state inspection. It is in my state.....only DOT approved. I don’t think the available poly windshield is DOT, perhaps it is.
 
#14
Dan, at one time I owned 80 operating fiberglass molds and produced a whole line of parts. While I am well versed on the process I am drawn to the idea that this could be built using the gel-coat finish. Almost any decent paint job in the Twin Cites is on this type of project is going to run 15 to 20k and tie up the parts for quite awhile. I don't like body work!!! I suppose that wrapping is an option but not my preferred option. Alex, you are not the first to recommend the polycarb option. I may have to reconsider.
 

Dan Carter

Member
GT40s Supporter
#15
Mike

I too initially thought I would get away with the gel coat. Once I cooked my body our paint booth, the air pockets exposed themselves and fixing them took the gel coat option off the table. I'm no big fan of body work either, but had to do what I had to do. Hope it works out for you.
 
#18
Kinda like Henry Ford saying you could get the Model T in" any color you want as long as it is black"- in this case any color you want as long as it is white. I was not aware the color options had gone away so thanks for the info.
 

Roger Reid

Member
GT40s Supporter
#19
Mike. I don't blame RCR for changing to a white gel coat only. This was a business decision based (my guess) on how many builders leave their cars in the original gel coat color.
 

Will Campbell

Member
GT40s Supporter
#20
White is just the default no-extra-cost option. You can still get any gelcoat color, they just cost a small amount more. Check out the website...
 
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