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BigD
BigD Reader
11/9/17 7:37 a.m.

Thanks a lot, yeah when I realize I need a new skill to accomplish something, I try to learn and practice until it's at a point where I'm confident enough based on the practice that I most likely won't screw it up on the application. Welding has been a thrilling learning curve, from the metallurgy to the motor skills of the TIG dance, and it has opened the door to a new world of possibilities. Other than being able to cast my own plastic parts or make tires, at this point, when I get an idea to do something, it's usually a question of how not if.

BigD
BigD Reader
11/14/17 2:27 p.m.

Wasn't happy with the angle of the last take-off, so I redid it by chopping the 180. This makes me much happier. I think I'll go with this. I'll throw a v-band on that joint so that from there I have flexibility. I think I will curve it forward so the WG sits parallel to the turbo and spits out of the hood (or out of the fender if I can figure out a line of sight that doesn't melt anything). Will probably brace the elbow to the fender as that's going to be quite the lever with a hefty mass on the end of it.

 

BigD
BigD Reader
11/18/17 4:36 p.m.

Not my best work, not my worst. I thought I wasn’t getting a good purge and switched to solar flux which helped. But the real problem was the heat cycled housing had a ton of crap on the surface layer. Had to grind out and reweld some areas because more horror kept floating to the surface from the housing metal. Whatever, done, next to carve the fender

Duder
Duder New Reader
11/18/17 8:44 p.m.

Any plans to divide that wastegate pipe? If not, you'll lose pretty much all the benefits of the twin scroll turbine housing.

BigD
BigD Reader
11/18/17 8:48 p.m.
Duder said:

Any plans to divide that wastegate pipe? If not, you'll lose pretty much all the benefits of the twin scroll turbine housing.

No, my manifold is an open T4, the only reason I have the twinscroll housing is because it's my only option for the EFR. Doesn't really hurt anything. I've compared my car's stats to those with twinscroll manifolds with the same turbo and it performs better (not due to being open but I'm saying not worse in spite of it). If I ever build my own manifold it would be twin scroll and at that point I can weld in a divider.

Mezzanine
Mezzanine Dork
11/19/17 3:03 p.m.

Wow, solar flux? Any chance you're a pipe fitter by trade? I don't know many people that aren't pipe fitters or serious welders that even know what that stuff is.

 

Wastegate fit up looks pretty damn good.

BigD
BigD Reader
11/19/17 3:27 p.m.
Mezzanine said:

Wow, solar flux? Any chance you're a pipe fitter by trade? I don't know many people that aren't pipe fitters or serious welders that even know what that stuff is.

 

Wastegate fit up looks pretty damn good.

Thanks! No I'm a computer nerd by trade although I like this stuff so much more, too bad no one will pay me as much to do it. Maybe one day I can become the local old angry guy you take your car stuff to when you want something cool done. I'm now looking for a good deal on an english wheel... I'd like to be like the guy who owns the trailer park where I keep my hauler. I witnessed him booting someone out and when the victim was about to make excuses, he said, "there's two things I don't need: your bullE36 M3 or your money".

I do know some cool guys in the industry who drop hints like that on me. Some of these shallow joints make purging unreasonable and the solar flux while not ideal like a full purge still gives you a nice shiny back-side so I love it.

The car of course decided that it wasn't having any of this "done" business, after cutting the fender and fitting the housing, it was clear that the flange angle was going to kick the elbow down towards the tire and pretty deep into the fender. So, cut, weld, rinse, repeat and much better. 

BigD
BigD Reader
11/26/17 6:31 p.m.

Beginning the 4 speed install. Got a pleasant surprise: the 26 spline GM input shaft pilot bearing ID is the same as the BMW ZF! One less thing to figure out.

Bellhousing fits after some hammer time. Needs a little more for some more daylight but happy for today.

Carbon
Carbon SuperDork
11/26/17 8:02 p.m.

Nice fab work man!

BigD
BigD Reader
11/26/17 8:10 p.m.
Carbon said:

Nice fab work man!

Thank you!

frenchyd
frenchyd HalfDork
11/27/17 1:40 p.m.

In reply to BigD : I believe the data that Ethanol is corrosive to Aluminum according to a SAE paper is wrong.  

Methanol most definitely is corrosive to Aluminum but the only corrosion I’ve ever found with aluminum and ethanol is caused by the water that the alcohol in ethanol attracts.  

Gasoline has had ethanol in it for decades now and even though I’ve opened up dozens  of carburetors  over the past decades the worst I’ve seen is a slight discoloration   On the aluminum from gasoline  that has been left to completely evaporate.  

Ethanol is drinking alcohol  such as wine, beer, booze.  In strong enough proof (180) it becomes a motor fuel. 

methanol  is corrosive, poisonous,  and dangerous. Able to damage organs simply from contact.  

The confusion is extremely common and all of the horror stories I hear about E85 originate from the confusion between the two. 

 

Ian F
Ian F MegaDork
11/27/17 1:58 p.m.

Wow.  No idea how I missed this 4 years ago.  Nice work! 

BigD
BigD Reader
11/27/17 2:06 p.m.

In reply to frenchyd :

I'm not an engineer so I'm not going to debate this, the paper is available online if you're interested. That being said, keep in mind that when engineers talk about things like this, and make statements that corrosion will occur, they are not referring to Alien acid for blood holes being burned. But if they find proof that the conditions may occur to any degree, they are reported. This means, for example, that the part may develop a crack, especially in the grain boundaries of welds over time. But it may not for the service life of the part. There is a phenomenon known as stress corrosion cracking and if you read the description, it sounds like if you weld 5xxx series aluminum and expose it to moisture and warm temperatures (150F or higher), it will break. I talked to the head engineer of aluminum tech at Lincoln who told me that basically, if you expose a 5xxx weld to a corrosive environment like salt water, elevated temperature and significant service loads, it MAY crack after hundreds or thousands of hours of service. 

In my case, it's just not worth the risk and building a new surge was fun. 

Ian, thanks!

BigD
BigD Reader
11/27/17 9:13 p.m.

Some photoshop masturbation. With my side exit exhaust plans for the winter, it'll pave the way for a flat floor. Kicking around the idea of having it extend to the tire edges and blend the rear flare to it

frenchyd
frenchyd HalfDork
11/28/17 4:16 a.m.

In reply to BigD :

I understand your point and reasoning.  I’m different, extremely weight concerned I’ve seen how easy it is for race cars to gain weight. Right up to the point of replacing sheet metal with carbon fiber.  On my XK-E I took over 220 pounds off the front end when I switched to carbon fiber  and wound up with a much stronger dent resistant part

Surprisingly it’s not all that hard to master nor is it a giant mess if done properly.  There are plenty of online examples of how to do it. My approach is to make a light splash mold off the part using cheap fiberglass matt.  Done properly  the part you copy comes out of the mold better than original because you put 4 coats of hand rubbed wax on first and then spray a coat of PVA ( poly vinyl alcohol)  as a release agent.. 

There are several tricks you learn such as using a set of pinking shears when cutting the carbon fiber cloth .  Covering bolt holes in body panels with scotch tape to prevent entrapment.  Using  2 layers of waxed cardboard as a separation agent for parting lines to prevent reverse drafting.  Finally to use a sharp utility knife and cut off the surplus carbon fiber just as the carbon fiber turns leathery.  It’s so much neater than grinding it off once it has completely hardened. 

 

BigD
BigD Reader
11/28/17 6:49 a.m.

Carbon work is definitely chambered for the future of the car. That's why when people ask me when the car will be done, I say I'll be done first because the roadmap for all the stuff I want to do to it, takes me into another human lifetime.

I will probably start with the roof and trunk lid, then splitter and once I think I know what I'm doing, do the fenders and doors.

Frankly, I can't believe how light my car is with the thick wall 8pt cage, steel fenders, huge wheels, all the turbo stuff including the metal intake, the exhaust which weighs as much as a small donkey, the drysump gear etc etc it's still only around 2600lbs dry (under 29 with me and full tank). But of course if it was more like 2200 that would be even more fun.

frenchyd
frenchyd Dork
11/28/17 3:38 p.m.

In reply to BigD :

You’ll  find it easier to do the hood first.  It won’t need any mold splits since it won’t be reverse drafted.   Plus you’ll want weight off the front end.  

Then do your front fenders, They will need mold splits but they are easy.  Doors, trunk lid,  and then roof panel the reason to do the roof panel last is it doesn’t unbolt and you can’t lay it on saw horses or a bench and do it easily,  The rear quarter panels will be extremely difficult.  Unless you plan on making them remove-able.  

Frankly the only reason to do that is if you plan on doing any wheel to wheel racing where they can be easily damaged 

I checked on line and found if I bought a whole roll of carbon fiber it was just as cheap to buy it from the local fiberglass warehouses. That plus the help and advice they gave along with buying partial rolls, resin, Jel-coat, tools, or just a few yards of things made the local source handy.  

When I first bought a roll back in the early 1980s there were three places in town  by the late 1990s all were shut down but two new ones opened.  

I still have a partial roll of carbon fiber and as long as I keep it clean it will remain good.  I don’t buy prepeg because that does have a shelf life and I no longer have access to the autoclave at the airport.  

Weight wise prepeg in an autoclave with a vacuum bag will be the lightest,  but you can do it using resin and a squeegee and still be as strong with only about a 5% weight penalty if you vacuum bag it.  

 

 

BigD
BigD Reader
11/29/17 10:09 a.m.

My hood is already fiberglass and pretty convoluted with the venting. The next easiest panel I figure is the trunk. 

Realistically, how much in raw materials would something like a trunklid consume?

I didn't actually know about prepreg, sounds interesting, depends if I can locate an autoclave... 

http://www.easycomposites.co.uk/downloads/TDS/EC-TDS-Beginners-Guide-to-Prepreg-Carbon-Fibre.pdf

BigD
BigD Reader
11/29/17 10:33 a.m.

Got some new flywheel bolts and had to do a bit of Lorena Bobbit time on them due to the Tilton flywheel being much thinner. Zipped them through the bandsaw, never getting them hot to the touch, chamfer on a diamond wheel and doneski. Worked out nicely. It never ceases to blow my mind how a length of serrated tin easily chomps through a half inch of tool steel.

This is one of my favorite things about this hobby, doing it at this custom level and dealing with American racing parts. You cook up a plan, find the guys who make the E36 M3 you need. They send you drawings and dimensions, you do some arithmetic and build your custom bits. Then you bolt it all together and it all fits just as you figured. Mounted the flywheel and clutch, torqued down and tested the bellhousing fit. Perfect 0.2" release bearing clearance, as calculated. Next to make the bearing hydraulic lines and then transmission time.

frenchyd
frenchyd Dork
11/29/17 3:42 p.m.

In reply to BigD : 

i don’t know what size your trunk is,  figure length times width and add 10%  use scotch tape to cover any holes that does a neat job of locating any trim you might want to use but it leaves a slight ridge it it’s edge.  You can wet sand those right off  the gelcoat. 

Depending on how thick ( heavy) you want it you can get by with 3 or 4 layers if you use foam  to give it added strength ( depth) there is a extremely flexible foam that weighs next to nothing and because it gives the part depth adds a great deal of strength. If you want more than a skin mold take a mold off the inside bracing but be sure to tape the edges so the mold doesn’t  get trapped. But I’ve always used skin molds.   Don’t forget to buy some Matt for the mold. I use cheap chopped Matt  just two layers thick.  What I make are called splash molds only good for a couple of parts at best. 

You will also need gelcoat.  Both for the mold and for the part.  It doesn’t matter what color the mold gelcoat is, traditionally it’s orange, don’t ask me why. But the gelcoat for the part does matter. Traditionally a lot of carbon fiber is done with clear to show off the carbon fiber.  That’s fine if you want to waste the carbon fiber.  Every thread shows and if you have to cut a sheet to cover the whole thing it will show, doesn’t  weaken it too much but it’s a great big screaming attention getter.  Everyone will be glad to point it out to you.  

I use the car color as my gelcoat.  You can buy gelcoat in just about any color.  Realize that if left outdoors for years gelcoat will cloud up.  It can be polished to remove it right up to the point you go through to the material underneath.  

When waxing the part  (to make a mold) and the mold for release do not use car wax.  Most car wax isn’t high in carnuba wax.  You’ll get a better release if you use furniture wax. 4 coats is the minimum I use and I’ve never had a mold or a part trapped.  No do not use pledge or one of those. Use paste wax from a tin.   Let each coat dry and then buff.  I get mine at my local hardware store but it’s an old store, you might have to go to a woodworking shop. 

frenchyd
frenchyd Dork
11/29/17 4:01 p.m.

In reply to BigD : 

try major airports  for an autoclave.  

 

BigD
BigD Reader
12/3/17 3:17 p.m.

Thank you for the tips, frenchyd, makes it a bit clearer how to get started. Might try something this winter.

Bellhousing almost ready to go in. Waiting on some hardware to complete it. Clutch line is done, so is the bleeder but ordered a bulkhead and a bleed screw to mount in the bellhousing. Also the bolts for the bell, trans and starter.

Made the wastegate elbow in the meantime. Worked out pretty much like I imagined. Just need to figure out how to best route the hood screamer. Maybe just angle it downwind and blend with the hood line. Need to patch the hole and add a brace to support the elbow.

BigD
BigD Reader
12/6/17 7:41 a.m.

Off to PRI today but got my car fix last night when a few bits arrived.

Put in ARP studs instead of the bolts for the turbo, should make removal and installation make me want to kill myself a little less.

 

Finished the clutch bleeder and got the fasteners to install the bellhousing. Now ready for the transmission. Need to measure the clearance to the tunnel from the shifter mechanism, might have to cut some out but the shifter should emerge pretty much in the stock location!

Ivo
Ivo New Reader
12/6/17 2:51 p.m.

Immense dedication to the car and the detail! For a computer nerd you're just a fab god. I couldn't catch up what is the purpose of that belhousing? Another (not BMW) gearbox?

Please, would you share your alloy rim sizes? I've never heard before about Fikse, but they look fabulous.

Thank you!

BigD
BigD Reader
12/7/17 5:21 p.m.

Thank you for the kind words!

I'm putting in GForce GSR, the current NASCAR transmission.

Fikse used to be a famous brand but they ran their business into the ground and were bought by Kodiak wheels in Canada. They've completely turned the brand around, and the wheels are made in BC Canada.

My wheels are Profil 13 (they've since renamed the models a little but it's the 13 spoke model, same one Gannassi ran on their Daytona prototypes... well with centrelock lol), 18x10 front, 18x12 rear

I'm having a blast at PRI at the moment, catchig up with awesome people I only get to see once a year despite my wishes.

Picked up some parts for my new transmission from GForce. Their display model GSR has always had this aluminum knob that I was in love with so I convinced the owner of GForce to sell it to me. I asked, why can't I find it anywhere to buy? Oh, he says we custom made it for a driver. Danica Patrick

Oh well, I still love it and I can claim Danica Patrick has yanked my knob

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