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TVR Scott
TVR Scott SuperDork
9/24/21 7:15 a.m.

More interesting post today!

I got a sheet of 1/4" structural foam in.  There's enough to make four roofs. 

In order to get the foam core to sit nicely in the laminate it's good practice to bevel the edges and give a nice smooth transition.  Ditto for rounding off the corners.  Since it's boring to just trim the bevel by eye, why not make a 3d printed razor plane!

This sets the angle at 30 deg and has a depth limit.  It works:

Here's the full sheet all cleaned up and ready to go:

Also, I went to the composites shop for fiberglass.  I bought 12 yards of 4HS - meaning the weave is a 4-harness-satin - fiberglass.  This stuff is super dense and smooth.  Easy to work with, and seems like it falls apart less than a plain-weave.

The shop also had a small roll of 45 deg biaxial cloth.  Heavy stuff too at about 0.015" ply thickness.  It's even quilted, so it shouldn't fall apart too bad.  They really wanted to get rid of it, so I bought the whole roll - about 2 yards for $10.  Not bad.  And now I won't have to cut 45 plies.

I also rolled out my carbon fiber supply to see how much I have.

Almost two yards - not bad.  This is 5.7 oz twill-weave cloth.  It's got that pretty herringbone pattern that everyone loves.  Should be enough to do my own roof panel.  If anyone else wants a carbon roof I'll need to get more.

Lay-up on Sat?  Maybe...

CoolHandMoss
CoolHandMoss New Reader
9/24/21 2:33 p.m.

So 1/4" thick foam plus the glass should make it pretty close to as thick as the reinforced hoop going across the roof behind the sunroof? Maybe a little thinner? That will be good to get the headliner in there looking smooth. 

TVR Scott
TVR Scott SuperDork
9/24/21 4:13 p.m.

In reply to CoolHandMoss :

It's not nearly as tall as that reinforcing hoop.  Probably half the height.  There will be lots of room to get the headliner right.

Also, I figured out costs - $250 for a fiberglass/foam-core roof, and $350 for the carbon/kevlar/foam version.  Shipping will be whatever it is extra.  Still need to do some estimates there.

TVR Scott
TVR Scott SuperDork
10/4/21 9:01 p.m.

New stuff to show.  First some discussion on foam core.  With a wet-layup like this, you can't really just slap the whole thing together with the foam in the middle.  The vacuum will pull the resin out from under the foam and leave that area resin-starved.  So this is a 3-stage layup:  Initial glass layers / foam core / remaining glass layers.

Here's the panel after the first layers of glass:

What I've peeled back there is - creatively - called peel ply.  It's a fine woven plastic fabric that doesn't stick to the resin.  When you pull it off the laminate it leaves a clean and uniformly rough surface that is all ready for additional bonding.

Looks like this:

With the peel-ply I don't have to go back and sand the surface before doing my next layup.  It's just ready to go.

Here's the foam layer prepped:

Sticky, sticky, glue, glue, bag, and it's done:

Here's the foam layer attached.  You can see where a little epoxy got pulled out, but that single seam doesn't allow much flow:

More laminating, more bagging, and PRESTO!  First roof is done!

It turned out quite stiff - I was a little worried, but no issue there.  There are a couple blemishes and dry spots, but nothing that can't be repaired.  Minor stuff.

Here's the bottom side:

I'll get it trimmed up and then this one is getting shipped to a guy in BC to (hopefully) get installed on a Vixen.

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
10/5/21 8:59 a.m.

That looks great.  I've done just enough work with fiberglass to not want to do that myself.  The TVR community will appreciate the effort.

CoolHandMoss
CoolHandMoss New Reader
10/6/21 9:25 a.m.

Yes that looks excellent. Extremely clean and well made piece. It definitely takes more than a familiarity with fiberglass work to produce something like that. 

 

Gammaboy
Gammaboy New Reader
10/7/21 4:54 a.m.
Since it's boring to just trim the bevel by eye, why not make a 3d printed razor plane!

This sets the angle at 30 deg and has a depth limit.  It works:

That's a great idea. Designed from scratch?

TVR Scott
TVR Scott SuperDork
10/7/21 7:01 a.m.

In reply to Gammaboy :

Yup!  This one is the third version that I printed and tested.  It didn't really work right until I could get the waste material cleared out.

I got the roof trimmed up and ready to go last night.  Good weight savings over the 13 lb sunroof:

TVRs2Lotus
TVRs2Lotus New Reader
10/8/21 11:01 a.m.

 Well, I feel a bit guilty for not catching up until now.. (more accurately over the last couple days) or even stopping by when in Denver. (Most recently was about a month ago when I passed through to get my brother for my trip out to run my Elise at SCCA Solo Nationals in Lincoln.)

I and the car were not overly ready, but I wanted to make a "20th anniversary" return as my last Nationals Auto-X attendance was Sept. 11th, 20 years ago.

I had hoped to be in the trophies, and was 5 thousandths out from last trophy spot on first day.. but not so bueno on 2nd day.. lost positions and ended up 19th of 41, so my record of always finishing in the upper 50% remains. (Pic of pass-by below) My bitty Fiberglass Lotus against the Z06 Vettes and Caymans.. not easy!

BUT WOW! Enough of my thread diversion! Look At You!! So much work!!  Great to see other TVR owners following and joining in! This whole group getting so much done and even sunroof plug sidelines!

I was waiting with baited breath for the engine to run.... then nothing.. is it waiting until you pull the body again?

 

Seriously, great work Scott, keep it up and hope to visit again on one of my trips back!

Bill

TVR Scott
TVR Scott SuperDork
10/8/21 11:32 a.m.

In reply to TVRs2Lotus :

Hey Bill!  Thanks for chiming in!  That Lotus is awesome.

The engine wanted to crank but wouldn't.  The best Joe and I could figure out is that the Focus ST clutch is hitting somewhere on the Miata bell-housing.  So it's waiting for me to pull the body back off, and then pull the transmission.  And that is waiting on the sunroof misadventure!  So, no starts just yet.

stuart in mn
stuart in mn MegaDork
10/8/21 7:22 p.m.

An interesting video showed up in my YouTube feed, from Goodwood Racing.  It's about an artist who does automotive paintings, and also races a TVR Grantura lightweight.

 

CoolHandMoss
CoolHandMoss New Reader
10/12/21 10:34 a.m.
TVRs2Lotus said:

 Well, I feel a bit guilty for not catching up until now.. (more accurately over the last couple days) or even stopping by when in Denver. (Most recently was about a month ago when I passed through to get my brother for my trip out to run my Elise at SCCA Solo Nationals in Lincoln.)

I and the car were not overly ready, but I wanted to make a "20th anniversary" return as my last Nationals Auto-X attendance was Sept. 11th, 20 years ago.

I had hoped to be in the trophies, and was 5 thousandths out from last trophy spot on first day.. but not so bueno on 2nd day.. lost positions and ended up 19th of 41, so my record of always finishing in the upper 50% remains. (Pic of pass-by below) My bitty Fiberglass Lotus against the Z06 Vettes and Caymans.. not easy!

A-street is a tough class these days! Mid pack is admirable in almost any class at Lincoln. Learning to race out there is a whole new process. I was out there in 2019 running in STX. Ended up putting racing to the side for my TVR project though. 

CoolHandMoss
CoolHandMoss New Reader
10/12/21 11:43 a.m.

Scott, seriously can't believe the weight savings. Not that I expected it to be heavier but less than half of the fabric and frame is just amazing. 

TVR Scott
TVR Scott SuperDork
10/14/21 11:24 a.m.

In reply to CoolHandMoss :

Thanks, man!

The first roof got boxed up and sent out in FedEx the other day.  Here's my found-materials packing job:

The box only weighed 7 lb complete!  This reminds me I want to make a "FRAGILE" stencil for the boxes.

Got the first layer down on another roof yesterday afternoon.  I got clever and precut my peel-ply for where the foam goes.  That way I'll get that nice fresh surface tomorrow when I lay down the final plies.

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
10/14/21 1:37 p.m.

So Scott, how long before you get back to making the engine turn under it's own power?  I'll come up to help whenever.

CoolHandMoss
CoolHandMoss New Reader
10/14/21 6:25 p.m.

Looks like you're ready to start cranking them out! How far down the list am I?

TVR Scott
TVR Scott SuperDork
10/25/21 2:01 p.m.

In reply to JoeTR6 :

Oh man, who knows!?  I would love to have you by for a work day.  Probably wouldn't start the car, but I would love to pull the gas tank, lift the body back off the frame and yank the transmission.  If we could figure out where my clash in the bell-housing is, that would be a great move forward.

 

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
10/25/21 5:33 p.m.
TVR Scott said:

In reply to JoeTR6 :

Oh man, who knows!?  I would love to have you by for a work day.  Probably wouldn't start the car, but I would love to pull the gas tank, lift the body back off the frame and yank the transmission.  If we could figure out where my clash in the bell-housing is, that would be a great move forward.

Well, we are driving a kid up to Littleton for the next two weeks.  My wife is doing this now, but I may give her a break over the next three days.  Next week I go back to driving another kid to day program every day, but we could trade duties and I could drive up to Denver.  I'd basically be there from 9 am to 2 pm with nothing to do.  After that, I'm looking for a job, so things get more complicated.

TVR Scott
TVR Scott SuperDork
10/26/21 9:03 a.m.
JoeTR6 said:

Well, we are driving a kid up to Littleton for the next two weeks.  My wife is doing this now, but I may give her a break over the next three days.  Next week I go back to driving another kid to day program every day, but we could trade duties and I could drive up to Denver.  I'd basically be there from 9 am to 2 pm with nothing to do.  After that, I'm looking for a job, so things get more complicated.

Yeah, if you want to do a midweek work party I'm up for it.

Dirtydog (Forum Supporter)
Dirtydog (Forum Supporter) Dork
10/26/21 11:46 a.m.

Happy to see that the roof inserts are working out.  Seems like a fair amount of TVR enthusiasts are finding your project.  Your car is coming along nicely.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TVR Scott
TVR Scott SuperDork
10/26/21 7:35 p.m.

In reply to Dirtydog (Forum Supporter) :

Thanks!  I'm slowly getting there.

Speaking of other TVR enthusiasts, today I heard back from Pat in Vancouver - the recipient of the first roof panel.

He has a Vixen, and had done research that suggested that the roof-line is the same as the M-series cars.  We weren't sure of this, so it was all a bit of a gamble.

Verdict:

IT FITS!

Profile looks really good.  The gap in the back edge will be taken up once it gets clamped in.  I'm super happy tonight.

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