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Discussion Starter #261
I should have had this side done already but I got that stupid cold/flu thing going around so I've been couch bound since Friday....yuck! :bi_polo:

In any event I was able to get it temporarily mounted, I set my nickel's in place with some tape and layed some tape down on the deck lid for protection. The overall fitment wasn't terrible but this panel is definitely thicker than the driver side. I measured it with my micrometer and it was 3/16 thicker at the rear and maybe 1/4 nearest the top













So once I measured it all out and used my contouring gauge and decided to trim/cut/sand the deck lid panel instead of morphing it into the rear quarter section. It would have been dimension-ally out of wack and the tail mount section would have been wacky as all hell.

So, I decided to cut to the chase and went for the heavy artillery with my belt sander! yep the belt sander. It wasn't so bad, I went slow and only hit the quarter panel a smidge! What I uncovered however .... shouldnt be a surprise to any of you...Tons of Rondo (resin and bondo mixed together) No wonder these parts are so darn heavy!







Every time I open up one of these panels I'm floored at how much waste there is! the parts could be better built and built cheaper with the end result being better quality parts with at least SOME attention to detail. I kinda get the impression these guys are slapping this stuff together with no regard for quality.... that's my .02 worth.

Hopefully I'll have this cold kicked this week so I can get back at it. I'm so close to the finish line!!! and I'm frustrated that I can't work on it. UGGGHHHHH!!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #263 (Edited)
The finish line is close, I still feel like I have a few proverbial miles to go but most of it is finish work. Like I realized today that I've never actually bolted the front end/bumper to the car.

It bolts at these points and they're clearly not drilled out. I've gotta find some really nice stainless screws for a clean finish look =)



The rear deck lid came out pretty darn good, I got some primer layed down so I can see the flaws/imperfections and there are a few spots that need some TLC but again its all finish work. Excuse the blurry pics, I keep forgetting to clean the darn lens







The tail/BFW has actually grown on me quite a bit and I can't imagine the car without it. I know its not for everyone but it works with the overall look.. Oh and the fitment is actually pretty darn good.





The tail light fitment is ...Ehhh Ok... its gonna need some filler in a couple spots and some finessing in other spots







So the rear bumper is in need of some love. It sets much higher than the side skirts and front bumper (even before my personal mods)
The side skirts set 4.5 inches off the ground (thats with factory MR2 rims but I imagine that will increase with the addition of 18 and 19 inch rims) the rear bumper sets 7 inches at the lowest point and 9 inches at the highest point from the ground. It looks weird and out of place in my opinion.



So, my plan is to lower this section and morph/wrap it around into the existing bumper section, its gonna be subtle and classy. I think the rear bumper is far to "Busy" and needs makeover. Kinda like and pretty girl with to much makeup,... just let the natural beauty shine through.



Same with the top section, I'll bring it in line with the curvature in the top section of the bumper... again...subtle beauty.



These changes will give me more depth and allow me to add this or something very similar. Ideally I'd prefer this section be removable as it lends to a more factory look. Not to mention that if its damaged its a bolt in application.

















Someone asked me if the side air ducts would be functional... ABSOLUTELY! there is plenty of room to add whatever is needed to direct air to the engine, inner cooler (Hint hint) intake manifold or whatever else you can dream up.



I'm in touch with a couple of other guys that have build going as well. Here is pic of the hood detail. They added a grill to the front hood, I like it but I think it needs some depth. Maybe an 8th inch spacer so it sets back a lil deeper... I guess it looks kinda kit car-ish in its current state and needs more of a finished look in my opinion... my .02



This is the front fender grill, again, I think it needs some depth to the screen to give it a finished look and to give it some depth. Otherwise it just looks like someone slapped a screen behind some fiberglass and it doesn't allow the edges of the fiberglass to be finish sanded. Im not hating or bashing the work, hopefully I'm not coming off as an ass as thats not my intention. I do however love the color!



Now I have to get back to work so I can wrap this build up! WHOOAAA so excited to be making progress on this beast of a build. =)
 

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Discussion Starter #265
I finally got the passenger side rocker panel finish work done. It needs a good sanding and of course a mold needs to be made.

























Annnd I still have to finish the drivers side

 

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Discussion Starter #266
So, I know what I want to do to the rear bumper but my fabrication skills are on vacation, thereby forcing my brain to take a break from such work. In the interim I polished off the passenger side skirt with a few coats of high build primer and of course let it set around curing for a few days.





Driver side is also complete



I started finish sanding with some well used 220 and worked all the way down to a 600 before 3 coats of wax and 1 mold release wax. The finish is just ehhh-ok ... as I couldn't wet sand it because the sub straight is mostly wood based. Once I get to the molding stage I'll probably spray a few extra coats of mold release (its called PVA) to compensate for the less than perfect finish. As much as I don't want to wet sand/polish my molds, I'm prepared to do so. On a side note: all molds have to be polished its just the mediocre ones that require the wet sanding, typically done with 1500-2000













I'll probably start laying out the walls or breaks in the mold this weekend, I'm pretty sure its gonna be a 5 piece mold when its all said and done. Overall I'm feeling pretty good about the direction things are going. =)

Wish me Luck!!
 

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Discussion Starter #267
And just as an FYI my dogs never go in the kennel/cage.... I looked back at the pics and there is all kinds of dust and debris in there. Didn't want you guys to think I was mistreating the Prince and Princess.
 

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And just as an FYI my dogs never go in the kennel/cage.... I looked back at the pics and there is all kinds of dust and debris in there. Didn't want you guys to think I was mistreating the Prince and Princess.
I'm reading your post here and I'm what Beast(s) are held in that heavy duty Cage lol
Look'n Great!

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Discussion Starter #269
I've been busy like a lil pre-Christmas Elf in my workshop....

I finished sanded, primer-ed, blocked and primed again and finish sanded with wet 1000 and polished to a nice luster to prep for the first mold.

Ok, Here we go - I finished the passenger door and it looked pretty good but the more I looked at it there was a bit of body wave that was bothering me. It is in fact fiberglass so I do expect some wave but I new I could make it a bit better.

This was the first go round



Then I blocked it all down again, filled the holes and primed, sanded, primed ....







And the second go round. I couldn't mount it to the door because all the holes we filled the second time around. I still have to hit it with the polisher but that won't happened until just before the release agent is laid down.





I made the flanges for the mold (Its poster board- the type of stuff realtors use to make their signs) its stiff and holds its shape really well and its plastic based.

I used a bit of hot glue and double stick tape to hold everything in place





Once I got that done I used some Plasteline, its a waxed based clay that fills the voids/cracks and makes the seams clean/smooth. You shove it down in the cracks and smooth it out with a credit card or whatever tool is handy for the shape desired.

Left a small section for visual purposes





and now its pretty much ready for a final polish, and mold release before Gel Coat and fiberglass layers.







Some of you may not be familiar with mold making so here are a few pics of why you will or will not need a flange for a mold



 

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Discussion Starter #270
Ok, so I made up a stand tonight, ya know something just above waist height so I can work smarter not harder.



Then of course I waxed and polished everything and added 2 additional layers of mold release wax and polished that to a shine





Then of course I called on my trusty Harbor Freight spray gun, its cheap but gets the job done as always.



Loaded it up with the secondary mold release - I wouldn't use this once the molding process is complete, this application is nothing more than an insurance policy when making the mold from the plug or original, its pretty much a fail safe if applied properly.



Anndddd sprayed three light layers with about a 15-20 minute wait between each coat. The end result is perfection!

Its hard to see in the pics but there is a thin green layer on the parts, compare the first and last pics from the post.







The next step is a layer of gelcoat - Once the mold is complete the gelcoat will be the first layer on the inside of the mold

There are numerous ways to lay the fiberglass after that step but I plan on layering it with a layer of "S" cloth and two or three layers of 1.5 oz mat with stiffening board for mold rigidity. Hopefully before the weekend I'll have this first mold completed =)
 

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Discussion Starter #273
I didn't quite finish the mold but its almost there! Got a the main part of it done and working on the end caps a bit today. Hopefully I'll have it done early this week, there isn't a lot to get done... just a matter of time. Oh and I have to trim it once complete.







 

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Are you going to produce new parts to fit to the car as the final product? I’d assume it would be lighter/stronger than the modified panels you are making the molds from right?


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Discussion Starter #275
Oh yes, the panels that I've been working with are heavy and not well made. Not sure if you've been following the build but they're full of filler, warped and really heavy by fiberglass standards.
 

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Oh yes, the panels that I've been working with are heavy and not well made. Not sure if you've been following the build but they're full of filler, warped and really heavy by fiberglass standards.
Build looks really good so far!! And so glad you're taking the prep time to make all the fitment work. Any idea how much weight this kit adds after everything?
 

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Oh yes, the panels that I've been working with are heavy and not well made. Not sure if you've been following the build but they're full of filler, warped and really heavy by fiberglass standards.
Yeah I’ve been following. Nice work!!


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Discussion Starter #278
Build looks really good so far!! And so glad you're taking the prep time to make all the fitment work. Any idea how much weight this kit adds after everything?

Hmmm ... ya know, I truly don't know. But once you strip off the factory MR2 body and add back that same weight from the new fiberglass panels... I imagine its in that area of 10-15 additional pounds. You figure the fenders are a wash as they're similar size and shape and same with the hood (although I think the factory hood is heavier due to crash test/standards and what not) The front and rear bumpers are much wider and larger overall so that's a few pounds for sure. Same with the rear quarters, they're just larger/wider. The door skins are just additional weight as you're not removing anything, same with the tail/fin. Then of course you have the rear deck lid covers and side skirts, ... which again just adds weight without the removal of a panel/section. So, ya... I figure 10 pounds and topping out at maximum 15 pound.

Earlier in the thread I did weigh some of the LP parts and they're super heavy due in part to the filler that was added. Not slamming their parts but the amount of filler is staggering! If memory serves me correctly one of their rear deck lid covers/panels was a porker at 4, 4.5 pounds or something insane like that. That's almost the total guesstimated weight gain with just those two panels!
 

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Sorry if you've already answered this elsewhere, but what are you thinking about in terms of color/paint scheme? Just curious.
 

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Discussion Starter #280
Sorry if you've already answered this elsewhere, but what are you thinking about in terms of color/paint scheme? Just curious.
My girlfriend used to have a Totota Avalon with a very nice understated factory Pearl White ... I like that a lot. although I've also seen a Polar White Paint job that was pretty nice as well.
 
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