Build Log: March 26, 2013

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Once again, too much time has elapsed since the last update. Thanks to the gentle urgings of some of my friends - Mags, Pat, Steve, Bill, Mike, Clay and others - I was shamed into doing an update today. As I have mentioned before, competing priorities have limited the time I have been able to work on the car. As a result, there often just isn’t that much to update. Nonetheless, I have enough for a decent update, so here goes.

We start with the cowl. Since this will tilt up to expose the engine compartment, the underside will be visible and it will require some work, not only to make it presentable, but also to reinforce some key points:

You can see where the factory postage-stamp-sized hood was bonded in, and the bond seam will require some additional filling and smoothing. Also, the stays for the wings need some work too:

Both ends are attached to mounting points that are bonded to the fiberglass substrate with HSRF. I don’t think this is sufficient, so I glassed both points in with West System Epoxy and some glass fabric:

That should provide an adequate margin of strength. Next, I worked on the seam where the old hood was bonded in. Some Rage Gold smoothed things out a bit:

Next, I needed a way to mount the side louvers. I settled on a process I have used before where a type of bolt called a weld bolt is epoxied to the fiberglass. The epoxy is mixed with some cellulose thickener to make sure there is a good bond:

I still have a little more work to do to make the cowl underside presentable, but it will not have to be “show quality”. The underside of the cowl will eventually be coated with bedliner material. This will help prevent any errant stones or road debris from creating spider cracks from striking the bottom of the cowl.

Next, I turned my attention to the glove box. If you recall, I had an opening for it, but no actual box. I knew the dash would have to come back off anyway, so this was a good time to tackle making a glovebox. I started by cutting and bending aluminum for the body of the box:

And then a piece for the back:

And the completed box. Pretty simple, but effective:

The interior of the box gets covered in black velvet:

I added some flanges with perforations in them to aid in bonding the box to the back of the dash. More West System Epoxy makes for a good bond:

And here it is installed. Hopefully, the dash is now permanently installed:

You might also notice that I replaced the leather ends of the dash with pieces with the embossed diamond pattern that I have used elsewhere in the car. I think that will make a nice touch.

That’s all for now.

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