Southern GT Chassis #54 Build - The What Have I Done Chronicles!!

Hi Neil
No such thing as a soapbox in a forum, all good points and should be made, up to individuals if they choose to apply them, I'll take a look at that article.
The panels I fit are also adhesive bonded which I would assume give a little more structural integrity and in fact (anyone correct if I am wrong) the panels on a SGT are more decorative as the chassis is bloody strong in its own right
Ok few more panels fitted, mostly going very well, bit of fettling as one would expect, have dug out my band saw with a very high TPI blade and I have to say that really helps (thanks Paul for the tip) as does the rivet spacer, anyone doing this should I think have one, not much money and keeps those rivets inline and level, good for all spacing really, brake pipe clips the lot


Have not really worried about marking the panels, being as careful as I can but mine did not have any blue covering and its going to get used so the floor especially will take some pounding, will be made to a high spec but I am not a concourse man, not toothbrushes up the tailpipes for me, each to their own mind you.

So most of the inner cockpit done, fitted the lower floor pans, moving to the front now, inner sections seem ok, outers look a bit of a challenge a few ciders and some red wine will probably ease the little grey cells!!

If worried about scratching the bare ally, get some vinyl wrap on ebay and stick it on the panels, comes of easily and keeps panels scratch free... though I'll end up scotchbrite mine in the end. Looking good.
Hi Morten, I have looked into scotchbrite and watched a few You Tubes where they do it along the grain with WD40 and it gives it a sort of satin finish, got some spare panels I may have a go as a test for the end, off up the shed now for a spot of riveting :)

If you intend to leave your aluminum panels bare (unpainted), a finish using 600 grit sanding discs in an orbital sander looks nice and does not show incidental marks as clearly as an unfinished panel would. Use a dust mask when sanding the panels. If you want to add a very "military" look, after the orbital sander apply an Alodine gold passivation finish.

Randy V

Lifetime Supporter

If you intend to leave your aluminum panels bare (unpainted), a finish using 600 grit sanding discs in an orbital sander looks nice and does not show incidental marks as clearly as an unfinished panel would. Use a dust mask when sanding the panels. If you want to add a very "military" look, after the orbital sander apply an Alodine gold passivation finish.
This is great advice.....
You can also apply a really good protectant like Shark Hide — Not cheap, but it goes a very long way. Also works in high temp locations well as I have done valve covers and intake manifolds with it.
Lot more pop pop rivet rivet over the weekend, front now mostly done, working my way back, nothing fixed yet want to make sure I don't cover anything up that I should not, only 1 hole drilled in the wrong alignment, a spot maybe for the horn, see if anyone can spot it, sort of "Where;s Wally" :)
Might be time for a sweep up, floor looks like a rail gun has been in action!!
Top mount or floor mount pedal box?might want to wait with riveting panel on top of chassis rails till steering rack/pedal box/brake&clutch lines/ac hoses etc are in:)
If possible fit antirollbar through holes in front panels before riveting them in as holes are too small to fit it afterwards..
Top tips thanks for that, I have enough Cleco's to probably hold the whole lot together without any rivets, already had to remove some and they are buggers to drill out, Paul Bav did mention about fitting the steering rack as its a pain to do after but thanks for the tips on the rest. Il will only do panels as and when I am 100% sure they wont intefere and even then I will post and check with the support team here!!

Pedal box is going to be the topic for a discussion soon, I have bit old dabs so need a set to maximise the space I have to get my feet in, any thoughts welcome now, will possibly post in the other forum as well later.
Oh, and use a 1/2” reamer to remove the paint in the suspension bolt holes before too many panels are on... will save you a lot of headache. Just my 2 pennies worth today.. have fun.
Cheers, the powder coat is very thick so that is a must, again a good reason not to rivet anything just yet, thanks as always. Having the forum almost makes up for no manual, still wheres the fun in a having it all laid out in black and white, "GT40 For Dummies" just would not ring right!!
Note to self.....
Don't fix the rear cabin panel until the firewall one is fitted as they overlap...
Spot of rivet removal tomorrow :mad:
Life is a learning curve....
Evening all,
Not posted an update for a while but have been busy beavering away on panel fit, all gone pretty well, its oddly very satisfying, only a couple of minor hiccups but all easily solvable, some photos below, almost done the panels now, probably a couple of evenings and a weekend day and they will all be done and dry fitted then its on to some suspension goodies!!

front panels all but done, will need to make some cover trim caps for over the top of the box sections


Inner wheel arch ones I still have 2 panels to fit, quite tricky that bit as a few panels come together here and they all have to align.


Bulkhead went in ok, I would recommend these clamps, they are not cheap but are very good, word of warning though, one pinged off the roll cage and flew right across the workshop!!! For those in the UK they come from Screwfix.


Rear section now done one side apart from some trims, lots of careful filing around the roll bar where it welds to the chassis, I wanted as close as fit as I could get.


Also found a great supplier of aluminium trim sections here and they have a really good range of unequal trims as I wanted a larger top section to the side section. Cheap and good speedy delivery.


That's it for now folks, will miss the panelling once done, mind you I have a LOT of rivets to fire when I fit then fully, just using Cleco's for now as that way I can remove panels to do the wiring and pipe work.
Finally remembered my camera has been far too long since an update, progress made, still very enjoyable, at a b it of a cross roads as to what to do next, thanks Paul for the chat this week really helps, panels I found simple enough as they flowed, now I am nervous about putting the "services" in and then having them in the wrong place so any thoughts appreciated, Paul and i chatted and I am currently thinking brakes, air/con, power.
Brakes would be harder to move than hoses and cables but as always fire over thoughts.

Heater box I am only using the ac part as I am going for a heated screen to avoid the tissue on the screen IVA, some builds put these in different places again any thoughts welcome, looks like a custom bracket needed to hold the box, time for shopping for brake parts and alloy!!

Plus if anyone ideas about pipe routing on a SGT please feel free to share.

Got to pull my finger pout as body is arriving this Weds, any tips on storage? It will be in a dry semi heated workshop (large space) just do not want it warping.

Engine short block I am collecting in a weeks time.

That's about it, few photos below, not much to show but all part of the diary :)