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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Well I figured I'd start a build thread with all the great, good, bad, ugly, pretty, frustrating and fantastic parts about building one of these kits. I ordered the kit in early June and it arrived late October :miserable: I had plans to pick it up once it was shipped from San Diego to San Francisco, however once I arrived at the shipper I had to pay additional fees of 150.00 plus an additional $250.00 for a UHaul truck rental (The box was HUGE!) I manged to get it home and unboxed while doing an inventory of all the parts only to find out that the side mirrors (glass) was missing as well as the fog lights and turn signal lights. Upon speaking with LP (its challenging at best) he told me that none of the above mentioned items were included with the kit:mad: One of my biggest concerns upon inventory was the quality of the lights ...More on that later when I get to that stage:rofl:

So far the car has been stripped of all the panels, with the exception of the rear deck lid and the doors. Oddly enough I managed to get the entire body stripped with a 10MM socket and wrench and a screwdriver... kinda scary when you think about it, but its done none the less.

I had the car Jammed in white as that will be the final color. I'm kind of on the fence with the finish product as some parts look amazing while other are kinda ehhhh. I don't think I'll have him do the final paint.

As it sets right now the front fenders are bolted on with minimal problems. I did have to install them a few times and use a dremel tool to oval out the screw holes for adjustment, the first installation yielded huge fender gaps from hood to fender. One of the frustrating parts of the build so far is simply the odd cutting of the kit, a couple of the mounting holes were cut right through the middle leaving very little to attach to the car. (See pic)

The kit is also Very Very thick and resin rich! (See Pics) It also appears that it either came out of the mold to soon as many of the edges/corner are warped and very difficult to mate to the opposing surface. (Meaning the edges don't lay flat) Weight is a huge issue with the panels! I swear the rear quarters must weigh 35-40 LBS :concern:

The grills aren't the best material, seems they're some type of cheap plastic. I will definitely be replacing them with something better suited for the application.

In any event the front fenders were adjusted for fitment as was the hood. Initial fitment isn't bad at all. I have notice however that the plastic frunk cover wont fit with the LP hood, seems some of the bracing needs to be trimmed down. Also the front hood latch needs to be relocated to the bumper support as opposed to the radiator support. I also can't get one of the bolts on the hood to seat properly as it just stops threading about half way:confused:























In any event things are so far so good... So far.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
I worked on the car for a bit yesterday with mixed results. Like I mentioned in my previous post, the hood latch has to be relocated from the radiator support to the front bumper crash bar. Not a big deal, but the bumper is stainless and pain in ass to drill out. My advise is to slow your drill to a crawl and use lots of coolant for the drill bit (I use soapy water, lots of it)

Here is the before pic - you can see the holes I drilled for the new placement of the latch



And here is a pic of the latch mounted in the new location, works like a charm after a little adjustment.



As with projects of this nature ... the release cable is now to short :mad: So yesterday I spent some time pondering a solution - bicycle brake cable is the same diameter and perfect match :chuncky:... But my joy was short lived as the lever release handle is far more complex. Pics to come after I figure out a solution, stay turned ... you don't wanna miss this!:confused:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
As always with fiberglass something goes wrong after being shipped out but from what I see that is some thick fiberglass and I'd be happy to receive something of that quality. Curious to see what wheels you get.

I think its a general misconception that "Thick" fiberglass is "Good" fiberglass and that's simply not necessarily the case. Sure, if I'm out sailing the seven seas I damn sure want the hull of my boat to be as thick as possible - thicker fiberglass in the boating industry is standard. However, thicker also means more brittle (literally think of it like peanut brittle) ideally for automotive use you'd want something with two or three layers that's been vacuum bagged and oven cured (I'll spare you the details about the layup) the end result would be a piece that's thin, durable, lightweight and strong as all hell.

My .02 for the day
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
Ok, so.... bicycle cable worked out excellently and the hood pops like a charm. The hood release handle OMG:miserable: ugghhhh. So long story short, I had to drill a hole in cable end of the handle. All was going swimmingly until the drill bit broke off... I was LIVID! So in my frustration I used my dremel tool to create a valley in an already tight space in order to remove said drill bit. When it was all said and done an hours time had passed.... :black_eyed: and I was beat up!

End Result:



Used this on opposing end of the cable



So the front end was finished today, it needs some final adjustments but overall it looks great. That's of course until I closed the hood :bi_polo:

What in the complete hell is this about? its a 1/2 inch gap between the hood and the bumper! How to fix? I haven't got a clue. Everything else lines up perfect, I can't slide the hood forward because it will be misaligned at the fender near the windshield and the head light buckets will be misaligned as well. Also it appears that if I were to fill the gap, the secondary latch will be in accessible - ugghhh!







Moving on - I spent some time today with the side skirt/rear quarter panels, initial fitting is good except for under the doors. Seems there is a ton of bondo that snapped off the sideskirt when I closed the door and the body line looks terrible in that area.... it was clearly rubbing.





Initially I started hacking away and the bondo which was almost 1/4 inch thick, but unfortunately the fit was still way off



So I hacked the cracker jacks out of it with the idea that I would bond and morph the panel into the lower rocker. Yes, it does look bad but trust me, in the end the fitment will be much better

Thick bondo pic



Overall progress pic

 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
Well, I was going to bond the quarter panel on yesterday but realized that I hadn't done any work for the fuel line - they need to be extended by about 10 inches or so.

Removed the fuel lines:



This greyish looking pipe slide out of place:



Made a few measurements and used a pipe cutter for clean cuts and no metal debris in the fuel lines - Side note: the two thinner lines do in fact flex quite a bit but don't get happy and over bend them will break off.



Re-installed n the car



Fuel rated extension lines added:



Audi filler neck with MR2 lower installed on kit:



Audi TT fuel filler door cable and pin:



Longer Bicycle cable - Same exact end pieces



This piece is crucial



The grey piece is from the MR2, it snaps into the lever/fuel door release handle.



The idea is simply to run an longer cable between the two end links, essentially mating the Mr2 handle to the Audi release pin

More pics or maybe a short video on that later
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
The fuel door release works like a charm, here is a pic on my work bench. The final connection was made in the car and perfection.



Moving ahead of myself to the interior, I purchased these and had them re-upholstered, currently they're in storage. The idea is to match the doors to the seats and "A" pillar or windshield surround



 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
Previous to the installation of the body kit I purchased the CHE header and downpipe/cat that required only minor adjustment to the heat shield and installation was quick easy and simple. Okay maybe not because you have to take quite a bit of the car apart for ease of access but its simple stuff.



I also purchased a dual exhaust system from one of the members on this forum, the results from the purchase date to install were .... to be nice... not the best. But decide for yourself.

Driver side rear:







Passenger side:







The overall pic shows that the two sides are completely out of whack, I did however take it to a local shop in an effort to try to have it adjusted :concern: the end result was simply not something that was going to work. So I threw this POS in the trash and moved on - next time I'll do my homework.

So I bit the bullet and started cutting the rear bumper support for the muffler shop. Yes you can cut stainless with a hole saw but you need lots of time, a drill press on the slowest speed possible and a cracker jack load of soapy water.





The end result: although the pipes aren't completely centered they don''t knock or bang around.









Ultimately the temporary tips will be removed and these will be permanently attached:



As of today the exhaust sounds throaty without resonating, I've been asked several times "What motor do you have in there" I smile :02.47-tranquillity: and say "Chevy small block... no I'm kidding.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I was allll up with you until you started showing the header and exhaust. That body kit will need atleast 18x10's in the back with some 275 tires. That 200 lb body kit is not going to help either. This thing will need ALOT more motivation than some headers and exhaust man. Without a drastic change in power, this car will be slower than .. almost everything.

The show has to have some go!
Absolutely!!! Im thinking a turbo charged 1ZZ. There are a few shops in the area Ive spoken with about getting this done. Basically it it boils down to how deep my pockets are and "How fast do you wanna go"
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
This thread is great - pictures, comments, good and the bad. But mostly I'm impressed that someone has the "stick-to-it" gumption to keep on going. It will be great to see where you land...or how you land...SEMA? Autorama? And please, please keep track of your hours and $$ spent. This needs to be a learning experience for all of us.
I love it![/QUOT

The kit arrived in late October and Ive been sitting on it since then. I did however have the exhaust completed even before the kit was on the boat. Ive done a few other simple things: Console, Tein Lowering springs, Rockauto Struts, GPS (headunit) Rockford Fosgate door speakers, Interior door trim - arm rest, door pulls and center cosole armrest

Since then my plans have changed a bit with the addition of new door panels and possiby different seats, new top and steering wheel.

So I said all that to say I started the actual build 5 or 6 days ago, in terms of man hours I typically get started about 10 and quit at 4. Thats with an hour lunch, dog walkin, Home Depot/ Bike shop runs, Tea time, Relationship maintenance and other misc down time. So in terms of hours.....ehhhh.... Maybe 20-25. Thus far (Id have to add up the receipts) but its in the arena of 450-500 but that includes two fuel doors that didnt work out as well as A complete rear quarter from an Audi TT.... I was literally shipped 1/4 of the car. Those pieces alone were. 325-350. I do think at this point it would be a great idea to log all of my time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 · (Edited)
So, I got in a few hours yesterday and couple today. I tidied the rear quarter section where the kit attaches to the inner door, overall the kit in general seems to fit best around this section as the anchor of the build. I've come to the conclusion (after temporarily mounting the upper door skin) that the entire kit needs to be shifted rearward 1/8 to 3/16th's of an inch to best meet/align with the door skins and the quarter sections.

Wanted to have a really nice finish when the door is opened, these seemed fitting



The door skins are pretty lite considering they've got a fare share of bondo attached to them.





Mirrors would attach here prior to install. My plans are to reinforce this area with a piece of aluminium that's bonded in place. Ironically enough the door skins are one of the thinnest parts of the fiberglass in this kit. I may in fact allow for provisions in the door to allow for the mirrors to be removed after they're installed. Yep I would have to hack up my doors, but whats worse? removal of the door skin if something ever happened to the side view mirror... I don't think so.





As she sets right now. I'm not real happy with the lower rocker install and will probably be changing things up a bit. It took an 8th+ of bondo to fill the gap ...not cool! I'm gonna have nightmares about that! Its not really designed to be a structural material so I've got to come up with something better than that.



Front of door and fender with a HUGE GAP!!!!



Rear of door with a better gap, but, look at the lower edge of the door... that's the look I'm going for



The door also grabs/touches the fender when opening the door... problem will only get worse once I close the gaps. Gonna have to feather the exterior of the door and the interior of the fender for clearance.



Once I shift the fenders, hood and bumper rearward, I can move the door upper rearward that 1/8 to 3/16th +/-





Hard to see in the pics but body line is off between the door and the fender as well, this fix may also fix my binding issue



I sounds like a lot of work but really its not at all, just a matter of finding the time to get it done. If memory serves me correctly I believe its a total of 19 bolts that need to be removed, the corresponding holes need to be reamed out a bit and everything gets reinstalled. This is of course considering the hood can be adjusted, I guess if bad comes to worse I'll just bore out the hinges in the hood.

Heavy sigh :cheerful:
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
As previously said (in many different ways), kudos to you. Thank you for all the extra time and trouble to document your process and progress. I truly appreciate your skills and positive attitude through the challenges you are meeting along the way. Thank you, again. I look forward to continued reading of your posts. :clap:
Thank you Sir, I appreciate you kind gestures and accept you positive energy with gratitude :biggrin-new:
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Great news, got a couple hours in today before the heavy rains this weekend.

Made this lil doo dad from a feeler gauge, measure my truck in a few spots and the hood seemed to have the best looking body line. You can't tell from the pic but the body line is the same all the way up the hood.





I transferred that same body line across to the rear of the door and the beginning of the quarter section of the door, used some double sided tape to hold it in place and dropped a couple of rivets in the door (these are temporary as I need to affix the mirror plate, mirrors and other minor sanding/filling adjustments)



I then removed the front fender, added the oval edge to the screw holes (for adjustment) and re-attached everything to the car and BAM!!! with some small adjustments everything fell in place like a Tetris Game.







There are a few more bugs to work out with fitment as the fender/door gap is a 16th or so off in a few spots, it's also causing a bit of a door impingement at the fender/door. A little filler in the low spots and some sanding of the high spots will take care of the issues.



I'm more concerned with the body line and how I'm gonna get that straight? not sure that blocking it will get it done



Overall the fitment of the kit is pretty darn good, yes, there are a few issues but so far so good. The gap at the front of the hood closed up a bit as well... but I don't want to get ahead of myself.
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
Well, its cold and rainy so not much work is being done on the car. I did however discover that the Audi fuel tank boot won't get the job done. Turns out even with just a few pounds of pressure the filler neck slides out of the rubber Audi sleeve. I'm happy to be figuring all this out now as opposed to when the car is up an running.

In any event, previous to discovering the Audi fuel cap/neck I was prototyping quite a few other pieces. All of which were centered around PVC pipe and rubber plumbing boots. So I came up with this...although I admit I'm on the fence with the finish product. The boot is a rubber 4 inch to 2 inch with a couple of hose clamps, the upper section that attaches to the fuel door is a PVC ring and sleeve that fit the rubber boot.





 

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Discussion Starter · #30 · (Edited)
Hello Everyone,

I got a couple hours in today, installed the passenger quarter section and all seemed to go pretty darn swimmingly. Not to say that there were no issues, but, nothing came up that wasn't unexpected.

Overall the passenger quarter panel fitment was much nicer that the driver side. I did however have to cut off the lower door section, Just like the driver side it pinched at the lower door so that was first to go. Overall the fitment was great! I was also able to test fit/install the door upper and all seemed great.



I adjusted the door gap with my homemade door gaping tool and again all seemed great, I haven't adjusted the front fender as of yet but the fender gaps aren't terrible



The lower rocker where it attaches to the fender is a bit strange, figured Id fill this with some resin and cabosil (trying to avoid the bondo)



front fender gap - not yet adjusted



Here is where things got a lil weird - I noticed the upper door panel was wobbly/shacky so upon further inspection I think Ray Charles could have seen the glass is twisted and torqued, probably a bi-product of early mold release.





So, when I properly (temporarily) attached the panel to the door ... this happens - its about an 1/8 inch drop between the two surfaces - Bondo time!!!! :love-struck:



Door gap pic - the top is spot on and the bottom is spot on, however, you can see that the fiberglass is a bit out of wack. Im on the fence as to which surface I'll sand, it will probably be the door as thats gonna be the easiest point of attack.



Once again, I'd like to say that this is not a bad kit at all, no different than any other fiberglass kit out there. Its got its issues and challenges but.. with a little time, patience and problem solving it can be done. ... Oh and Bondo! lots of Bondo! or fiberglass resin and cabosil.

I spoke with one of the local rim shops in the area and he informed me that rim selection is limited! Sure I could go with an off the shelf Chevy Truck rim but I'd have to run huge 4 inch spacers to account for the offset of said rims. Option 2 is to go with a 2 piece rim (My budget was roughly 2500 for rims and tires ... he says add another 500-800 depending upon the rim and manufacture I choose) :mask: This is adding up!
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 · (Edited)
So what do you guys think about the possibility of morphing these lower rockers into the LP kit? Yep, lots of work and it will push out the paint timetable a few weeks. Im on the fence about certain elements of the kit, one part being the lower rockers. The more I look at them the more they look like an afterthought. I also kind of feel like the intake vent and the lower rocker panel extension are overkill and put the car in the Batmobile looking category. I also believe the separation of the rocker and rear quarter is essential to making the car look less "Kit" like and more factory despite the fact that it is a kit.

Im truly open to your opinions and look forward to your replies.

http://www.duraflexbodykits.com/images/ED-2016/108786_2.jpg

Pic of the Gemballa LP kit

https://scontent.fsnc1-4.fna.fbcdn....=92341683ca9291152d46c8a0a35d14a3&oe=5917BC41

https://scontent.fsnc1-4.fna.fbcdn....=40744f062bb478ef4645aefd1bc5166b&oe=590C8B85


This is an better example of the look Im going for

https://scontent.fsnc1-3.fna.fbcdn....=f49b3058b3fc340711bd39e79ee0d089&oe=59138158

https://scontent.fsnc1-4.fna.fbcdn....=ef1e6336642a23f1e6a93afd4cbb85d7&oe=5907F841

https://scontent.fsnc1-4.fna.fbcdn....=d130c5eae2e4fb97f4cd64d35d19587f&oe=59133BFB
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
While Im at it, I'm also thinking about modifying the side view mirrors to mount similar to the Torismo kit. It would involve re-doing the upper exterior door panels and adding some type of side view mirror support.

Your thoughts, please.
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 · (Edited)
Apparently there are a cracker jack load of these cars in Taiwan? I clearly don't know the language but it seems a fitting place as ground central for the resale market.

I like the second white car, I believe that's the Gemballa Kit... actually think I like it better than my existing kit

http://www.fast2car.com/car.php?brand_id=39&model_id=594&body_id=963

This is a bad a$$ body kit, I like the lower rockers a lot! and I like the curve of the rear air take/ quarter section

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yvk18hZJWAU
 
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