Construction of new FV - June/July 2008
[Bullet on track in 2011]
Click on pix for blowups
This is Allen Adderley - he started this whole mess by contacting me and suggesting that I build a new
car and use his bodywork. Since BODYWORK had been the main prohibition to construction of a new
car design for me, I started giving it some thought. I had forgotten just how HARD it is to build a new car
since the last one I did was almost 20 years ago (the bad memories fade quickly <g>), so I stupidly decided
to go ahead with the project. Only later did I realize just how much of the old (trashed) car we cannibalized
to build the new (at the time) one. THIS car, however, required ALL NEW EVERYTHING as I did not
want to disable the old car ... just in case things didn't work out the way I wanted J.
Lee starts working up a new front beam for me
The bodywork arrives! I set it up on my 'fabrication table' that would be used to build the frame (so I didn't have to lay on the floor to do it <G>).
Unfortunately, I FORGOT to take pictures of the base frame as it was built up on that table - too focused on the job at hand).
I'll get a picture of the stripped down frame the next time
we strip it down, but we built the bottom frame first. Starting
with the engine/trannie cradle area, then the front frame to the front beam, then the rear trannie/trailing arm mount, then
the frame to that mount. At that point, we took time to build up a complete front end and mounted the REAL trans and a
fake engine with the new front end to support the car on it's wheels for the first time. Here the bodywork sits on the frame
rails and the fan shroud that's mounted to the top of the engine.
Once the lower frame was built, I needed to 'establish'
the wheel base - so I built temporary attachments for the front suspension and
transaxle and installed
them (along with an old engine case/cylinders/heads plug to help me position the bodywork.
This is the first time we had the opportunity to see (kinda) what the car would look like in final trim.
This is also when the decision had to be made as to the 'orientation' of the bodywork (attack angle and
how it related to the lower frame) - note wood spacers. The jack stand is holding the bodywork 'in'
towards the frame, where it will be when fastened.
At this point, I got rid of the layout table (it was
taking up too much room) and went to the in-ground lift. It was REALLY
being able to raise and lower the car at any point to work on specific items. The lift is a little high for the race car, so we have
to raise it by putting the tires on stacks of wood!
The next step was the main roll hoop. We made a
cardboard mockup of the inside of the cockpit to
create an outline of the main roll hoop
Then I bent the hoop using the template to compute the
lengths and angles. Thanks VERY MUCH to Kevin
Allen and Adam Malley (MallenAlley.com) for the loan of
a REALLY NICE JD-2 tubing bender!
And THANKS to Linda for making all those meals for us
while we worked on the car :-). (the BAR
service was a little slow, but we needed the breaks anyway <VBG>)
We installed the completed main hoop and then built
the front hoop in a similar manner. Next, we installed
the 2 main front hoop supports. Here we show the fuel
cell and its container sitting at the main hoop.
Now, with the front and rear hoops in place, I can sit
in the car and start to determine the final locations of
things like the STEERING WHEEL and SHIFTER!
A closeup of a weld (just a tack at this point) at the
front roll hoop.
A closer view of the fuel cell and the pad for my butt
to sit on during 'fit tests'.
The area right behind the roll bar will accommodate the
battery and fire system as it does in the current car.
New trailing arms had to be fabricated as well as the trannie support where they attach
Another closeup of the fuel cell with the container open.
A closeup of the footwell area, showing the (recently fabricated) clutch and gas pedals. The brake pedal
is still waiting on the balance bar assembly to arrive. This pic also shows the steel underpan that will support
my feet - another will be below the fuel cell. I will also sit on a slightly elevated sheet. This allows the complete
belly pan to be ripped off in an accident and still have me and the cell remain INSDIE the roll cage!.
Front and rear butt pan supports are now installed. The upper and lower side bars are also installed
Thanks to Sam Lockwood (LockRaceWorks.com) for the loan of his bender for the smaller tubing.
Checking the level on the shoulder harness bar before welding it
Lee starts the cutout work on the air scoop
Here, we're deciding exactly WHERE to mount the steering
box and how long the pitman arm needs to be
(note jack stand supporting weight of steering box - the board is setting the distance down from the upper bars)
Steering box has been positioned and welded in - the pitman arm has been cut and set up for the tie rods
So, now we need a way to mount the steering wheel - this is the quick disconnect adapter - I had the chassis
upside down again to weld some tabs beside the steering box to keep it from moving side to side.
Fan housing sits on engine 'plug' to support bodywork during fastener location (Jim is admiring his work :-).
A nice shot showing the symmetry of the roll hoops (not bad for amateurs <g>)
We finally finished the bodywork fasteners and removed the fan housing.
Then we decided on an oil cooler location and fabricated a mount for it.
Some pictures of the lower frame and side protection bars
One of the last things I did was fabricate the belly pans.
The steel foot and fuel cell pans are welded in - the aluminum 'master' pan will
be riveted to
the sides of the frame when we're done with all the welding.
The chassis is turned upside down to access some of the
tougher weld joints.
The seat belt supports go between the front and rear butt pan supports.
foot well pan
The cell pan is 'spotted' in.
Seam weld is now complete
And, finally, the aluminum is 'applied' in 2 pieces
Here's a few shots that I used to submit the homologation
papers - it shows more of the almost completed car.
Rather than make this page bigger and bigger, please continue to PAGE 2 (if you so desire).