Monday, March 31, 2008

31 Mar 08

I organized the shop some more this morning with a big day ahead. Ben disassembled a broken compressor to salvage the tank while I picked up Hunt from dropping his car off. Caroline, Aaron, Ben, and Zac were all cleaning like mad all morning while Hunt worked on the glue dispenser. I removed the tunnel from the table took all the pieces off of it, and Hunt and I used a router with a follower bit to trim the edges square and straight. Hunt and I glued a piece of plywood to the top of the steering rack mount that will raise the rack about 1/2" and help us clear the leaf spring with the steering column. Aaron, Ben and Zac worked on some table legs and trimming out the A/C for the rest of the day. I masked off the areas on the cabin walls not to be glued to the tunnel and drilled some holes for rivets all along the glue edge. Hunt and I glued and riveted the tunnel to the cabin walls with epoxy using Hunt's new glue dispenser. The dispenser worked well, and, despite a bad batch of rivets, Hunt and I successfully glued the pieces together. The rivets are used only for pressure on the bond line, not for strength in the final piece. Tomorrow, we will attach some more.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

30 Mar 08

I mounted another shelf over the new lathe this morning. I also hung a storage cabinet/table to the wall next to the door. We moved the computer and the phone over to this area and away from the tablesaw. Hunt worked on mounting a router and a cross-slide vice to the new lathe, allowing for precision cuts. It is really a sweet setup. Ben came in around lunchtime and worked on the doors for the new building. Aaron showed up shortly thereafter and starting cleaning up a little bit. When Ben got to a stopping point, he and Aaron hung the air conditioner in the hole we had framed out for it. The guys left, and Hunt and I went about testing the fixture for cutting the slots in the steering wheel. Hunt made a bunch of test cuts in the wheel that Caroline and I had glued up a day or 2 ago until he got the right diameter of wheel left over. We broke for dinner, and I watched Davidson lose a heartbreaker to Kansas in the NCAA tournament. I hated that. I came out and started organizing the shop. It was in need of some hardcore help. I worked on that until about 10:45pm while Hunt worked on the wheel slots. Tomorrow, we finalize our new glue system and reassemble the chassis. Plus, clean up a lot more, which is always fun.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

29 Mar 08

I mounted a woodworking vise to the end of the outfeed table of the Unisaw this morning. I decided to through-bolt it rather than lag bolt it, and it took way, way longer than it should have. Hopefully it will turn out to have been worth it. Ben arrived at 900am and worked on the ramp support for the new shop for most of the morning. It rained, which made his progress slightly slower and significantly more displeasurable. Hunt worked on stiffening our steering wheel slotting device on the radial arm saw and on putting fittings on our glue machine. Caroline and I glued up a piece of plywood in the press to use as a mock steering wheel to allow us to set up the slotting device. Ben totally finished trimming the windows and door after lunch, and they look great. I rewired a plug in the back at Hunt's suggestion to give us a light switch for the lathe overhead light. I also remounted the fixture to the shelf rather than having it hang from chains. Caroline and I went over to watch the UNC game with the Veaseys at about 900pm. Looks like the boys are Final Four bound. Tomorrow, we start the chassis reassembly/gluing process and clean things up in the shop. It is an absolute disaster right now.

Friday, March 28, 2008

28 Mar 08

We kept at getting things straight and prepared for chassis assembly today. Ben worked some more on his glue system and trimming out the windows in the blue room. Hunt and I got some material to build a ramp for the new building, and Zac dug holes for posts that will support it. Ben and Zac worked on framing out the ramp while Aaron sanded and added pictures to the blog. Hunt and I worked on some wiring and organized the shop. Aaron, Ben and Zac poured some concrete and set the posts under the ramp. Tomorrow, we will finish getting our stuff organized and hopefully be prepared to glue some chassis parts together.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

27 Mar 08

Ben and I hung the 2 front wheels on the wall first thing this morning. When Zac and Aaron got here, the 3 of us started to move the giant veneer stack in the back corner of the blue room. Since yesterday's organization of the mold storage building went so well, we had plenty of room to work. We moved veneer like madmen until about 11:00 and began cleaning out the recently cleared space for our new lathe. The guys went to Hardee's and brought back lunch for everyone. Nice. Luke arrived after lunch, and he and I went to work trimming windows. He also made a Home Depot run for us to get a light fixture and a bunch of Sakrete. Ben worked on trimming the stiffeners down on the body mold, and Aaron and Zac dug holes under the new building to support weight. When Ben finished, he came in and helped Luke and me. We knocked out the first stage of the window trimming, and Aaron and Zac made a run to the dump. Luke stayed and worked until about 800pm, at which point I went in to eat dinner. We watched part of a totally boring UNC game and went to Home Depot at halftime to get a sheet of plywood and some brackets to make a shelf over the new lathe. I came back out and hung it and the light fixture, finishing up with Caroline's help at about 1100pm. Good day overall.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

26 Mar 08

Another high production day today. Ben showed up and resumed work on his glue dispenser while Aaron cleaned up the shop, and I cleaned up the chassis and the part we made yesterday, which was a decent success. When my dad came out, he began sanding the chassis parts as he did yesterday. He and Hunt went to Home Depot to get some parts to hang the wheels on the wall while I disassembled the chassis for sanding. Zac began work to finish fiberglassing in the stiffening panels onto the body mold. Aaron put some new renderings on the website. Ben finished work on his glue dispenser and went out to help Zac until lunchtime. After lunch, I resumed breaking the chassis down to feed parts to my dad, and Aaron came out to help him sand. With 2 air sanders running, plus my occasional air drill inside the shop, the compressor never missed a beat. Ben and Zac went back to fiberglass and finished within a couple of hours. My dad had to hit the road around 4, and Aaron, Ben, Zac and I went out back to clean out our mold storage building to make room for the veneer that we have been storing in the blue room. We worked on that until about 6:15 and made amazing progress. Hunt trimmed up the rear section we made yesterday and managed to salvage it despite some flawed initial veneer trimming. After dinner, I came back out to mount the wheels to the wall. Fortunately, Hunt came up and showed me something I was about to screw up, and everything ran smoothly. I mounted the rear wheels to the wall and called it a night at about 10:20 when the boss lady came out and told me it was time for bed. I guess I will leave the front set on the floor for 1 more night.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

25 Mar 08

The team was in gear this morning. I put together a sanding table for the old man, and he sanded parts all stinking day. He seemed to particularly enjoy the places where he had to scrape glue off the outer skins, but he never mentioned it. Hunt spent most of his day working on the radial arm saw fixture that will allow us to slot the steering wheel. Ben worked on his glue system, and Zac cleaned up the pieces to the hat section mold. Ben and Zac brought the body molds back up from the airport, and Zac started fiberglassing the supports that Ben worked on last week. Ben left early, but Luke showed up and helped Aaron and me glue up a new rear section of the chassis. We made one of these already, but weren't satisfied with it. I hope we will be satisfied with this one. Hunt, Aaron, Luke and I looked at the routing of the steering column for a while, which is going to be extremely tight. We also got a visit from Zac's dad and his C6 Z06. He kept us entertained while we spread glue for the rear section, and it was good to see him as usual. Hunt and I glued some stops on the steering wheel slotting jig, and then he and my dad talked about airplanes and 50s cars for a while as the day wound down.

Monday, March 24, 2008

24 Mar 08

Luke called at about 6:58 this morning to tell me he was coming out to help with the hat section lay-up if we were ready to attempt it. I told him to come on. Hunt and I went to get some fittings so that I could cut the white air hose into 2 pieces for use in the hat section lay-up, and then Luke and I were off to the races. We started gluing at about 10:30, finished at 11:00, and had the part in the mold by 12:30. It looked good, and everyone broke for a much needed lunch. Zac was back from his Italy trip, and he and Ben stacked backer boards under the lean-to, moved the body mold down to the hanger at the airport, and helped with the glue-up. Aaron came out to help, and Hunt and Brownie helped, too, naturally. After lunch, Luke went to teach his studio, while Ben and Zac went back to stacking backer boards, and I began looking at an old mold of a part we wanted to remake. Ben, Zac and I took the engine/transaxle assembly off the old lofting table and moved the table into the new building with additional help from Aaron and Hunt. It weighs about 700lbs, so that was quite a task. Zac and I lifted the powertrain onto the table, and Ben began work on an equal-mix glue dispenser. Aaron worked on the 3D model of the front suspension and backed up files for most of the day. After dinner, I came back out to fix a hold-down curtain and ripped some foam block strips for the part we will remake tomorrow. Hunt came up, and my dad showed up from Charleston to help for a couple of days. We pulled the hat section part out of the mold, and it is so gorgeous that sleeping won't be hard tonight. That is a monster part we now have behind us.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

23 Mar 08

I pulled a lovely dashboard piece off the mold this morning. It feels good to get that part off the mold in an acceptable fashion. I spent pretty much all day messing with the hat section mold. There are a lot of small details that had to be tied up to get that thing ready to mold. Caroline cut the veneer for it, which included 2 of the dreaded 45degree pieces which much be stitched together. I had to make another air bag from a fire hose, so Hunt and I had to go to the Home Depot to get some fittings for it. I spent a while cutting the end pieces, making the rubber gaskets, and drilling the holes. Hunt put the fitting on, and I checked the bag with soapy water to find no air leaks. I had the NCAA tournament on while I worked, and I saw some real squeakers between Davidson and Georgetown, Texas and Miami, and Memphis and Miss. St., and Tennessee and Butler. The UNC game was an unexciting blowout, but it was a great day of basketball. I wrote up the process for gluing up a part on the hat section mold, and we should be ready to hit it tomorrow. Being as it is Easter, I was unable to get the bolts that I need to hold the straps on the mold down, so we will have to make a run tomorrow. Other than that, as long as our white air bag will work as is, we should be ready to do the hat section.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

22 Mar 08

I got back to work on the dashboard mold this morning. I needed to sand out the body filler some more and work on the radius at the top of the mold. Ben arrived and dove directly into working on the fiberglass body mold supports, which he basically continued on all day long. He only took breaks to eat and watch his Blue Devils lose to WVU. After everyone ate lunch at the airport, Caroline cut some veneer while I welded some steel brackets for the hat section mold. We finished at about the same time and glued a new dashboard with help from Ben to put the heavy mold into the vacuum bag. We finished this at about 2:30. Ben went back to work on the body mold stiffeners, and I helped Hunt on a few odds and ends on the steering wheel slotting fixture and began to get the hat section mold together. Ben stayed until almost 8:30 working on the body mold. I hope we can get the hat section mold ready to roll tomorrow. That is going to be one killer layup.

Friday, March 21, 2008

21 Mar 08

High production today. Hunt and I trimmed the I-beam this morning, which is a really impressive piece. Ben showed up and worked on the supports for the body skin molds, and Luke came shortly thereafter and started working on the hat section mold. Caroline cut some circular pieces of veneer for a steering wheel plug.
After lunch, we finished the oak side rams of the hat section mold, and Luke started cutting steel for several various supports for the mold. Soon, Ben stopped working on the mold supports and began welding steel as Luke fed him with parts. Aaron was still feeling sick today, but he came in and worked on some renderings that we needed to have finished by today. Caroline and I glued up a the steering wheel plug for a demo, and Hunt worked on the fixture that will allow us to slot the wheel on the radial arm saw. I took the dashboard mold out, assessed it with Hunt, and decided to tear the skin off and reskin the mold. The surface quality of it was weak, as was the resulting part that we made from it several months ago. The original mold was skinned in 2 layers of bendable plywood that were 1/8" thick. To maintain this offset, I ripped some 2X4s into 1/4" strips, and Luke and I glued and stapled them to the mold. Hunt continued his work on the fixture, and I applied body filler to the mold until about 7:15. Then, I went inside to eat and watched a little NCAA tournament basketball. At halftime of the UNC game, I came out and worked on the body filler surface of the mold until about 9:30 and called it a night.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

20 Mar 08

We pulled a perfect part from our mold this morning, so Hunt, Ben and I spent the morning gluing up our wooden I-beam. Luke showed up as we finished, and we went to lunch. Aaron worked on renderings all morning, but was feeling sick and headed home for the rest of the day. After eating, Ben went back to work on making the supports for the body skin molds, and Luke and I went to work on finishing up the hat section mold. Hunt routed the radii on the ram of the mold, and Luke and I remade a couple of MDF pieces out of oak. We glued up one before he left. Luke lso cut some all-thread pieces, and I welded a washer on the ends of them to use with our hold-down straps. When I finished that at about 8:15, Ben was still working. He is a machine. Caroline and I came out after dinner and glued up the other oak chunk. I would love to do a dry-run of the hat section tomorrow, but there is a lot of stuff to be done before we get to that point, so I suspect we won't get there quite so soon.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

19 Mar 08

This morning, I trimmed up one of the I-beam halves, and Ben and I decided to make one to replace the 2nd one. We had it glued up by about 12:30. Hunt worked on the tool cabinet for a lot of the day. After lunch, Hunt and I went to get some MDF to use for making a new set of lower control arms. The MDF won't actually be used in the part itself, but to take up space in between the platens of the press. Ben worked the 2nd half of the day on making the support tables for the body panel molds, and Aaron came outside to look at the front suspension in our computer model to start to plan out the final details. I fed him with measurements and points until about 6:00, at which point Ben and I covered some things in preparation for rain. After dinner, Caroline and I came back outside and glued up a panel for the lower control arms, and Hunt came down and smushicated it in the press. We were done by about 9:30.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

18 Mar 08

Hunt and I went to Woodworker's Supply this morning to get a pocket drill jig and some #10 biscuits to keep Ben busy on the tool cabinet first thing this morning. We pulled the sister part to the front suspension I-beam that we glued up yesterday, and it was a moderate success. I glued up some flat pieces to tie the 2 pieces together to form the I-beam, and Ben and Aaron came out to help me get it held down. We used our standard air-bag, I-beam, U-clamps technique seen in the leaf spring and many other areas. Hunt came back up after lunch and worked with Ben on the faceframe of the tool cabinet for most of the remainder of the day. Luke came out, and he and I worked on the hat section mold for the rear suspension. We glued up the last MDF chunks that we will have to dimension for use in the mold and glued up 2 new hold-down curtains for use in the mold. Luke left at about 7:30, and I came inside to eat and do some computer work. One of these tasks is among my favorites; the other not so much. I will let you guess which is which.

Monday, March 17, 2008

17 Mar 08

We pulled a good part off the mold this morning. We were happy with our success, but decided to make a new curtain from sandpaper rather than rubber. I took the old one apart, and Ben helped me glue up 2 new ones with urethane glue when he showed up. We cleaned up the shop a little bit in preparation for Bong's arrival, who was bringing his class out for a field trip to see the car. The guys and girls really seemed to like everything we showed them, and everyone stayed for pizza until about 1245. When they left, Ben and I set about gluing up the sister part to the one we made yesterday. We had it under pressure within an hour or so, and I feel pretty sure that it is also a good one. Ben started work on the tool cabinet he is going to build for us, and I helped him plane down some oak boards. He also made a box to lift the jointer off the ground while Hunt and I went to get some screws for the radial arm saw table. When we got back, I set about flushing the table with the adjacent infeed/outfeed tables while Ben dimensioned some wood for his cabinet. We called it quits for the day at around 8pm.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

16 Mar 08

I cleaned up the shop this morning. Shop dirty. Take long time. After getting that out of the way, I began to get things in order to make the new part. I needed to increase the radius size on the molds, and I also cut the veneer pieces to size and shape. Hunt worked a lot on getting the radial arm saw set and installed. He drilled and mounted a large chunk of aluminum for the bed and did not appear to be enjoying it. We had the ACC tournament championship on in the shop today, which UNC won in a tough one over Clemson. Soon after that ended, our buddy John came by to check out our progress. He stayed for a few, and right as he left, Jenna Eason and her friend Sacha came out to see us. Jenna is a student from NC State and is interested in the car from an automotive textiles standpoint. When they left, Caroline taped the molds off to protect them from glue while I took the all-thread tie-down rods off another mold for use on the new one. Hunt came back down, and the three of us glued up the part. We followed much the same procedure as on the gas tank laminate. We pulled radii down with a curtain custom-fit to the part, and used an air-bag inside a steel channel, which Ben welded to size for the mold, to hold the sides down. We used an air bag to pressurize the top and held it down with the upper platen of the giant press. We haven't calibrated the platens yet, so we didn't want to use them for pressure tonight. Tomorrow, we will check the part out and hopefully make the sister part, which will complete the I-beam shape.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

15 Mar 08

The lofting device is officially reinstalled and ready to roll. It took me most of the day, but it will be worth it. I spent the morning redoing all the mounts that Luke and I toiled over last night. Hopefully, you won't be reading this, Luke, but, if you do, I am sorry. Ben showed up at about 10:30 and worked most of the day on sliding legs for our I-beam table. We had lunch at the airport down the street and saw some exciting ACC Tournament action in the afternoon while we were working, including a last-second game-winner from Tyler Hansbrough. I took some time to reinforce the lofting arm to remove any compliance that it had accumulated after the long body mold sculpting process. After dinner, I came back out, strung the wire and reset the center for the lofter.

Friday, March 14, 2008

14 Mar 08

I ground down some burrs on the I-beam we will use for the next mold this morning, and then Hunt and I went on a quick run to the junkyard for some odds and ends. Ben worked more on welding some reinforcements on our air-bag channel for the mold, and then helped me by welding some legs I cut onto the bottom of the I-beam. I made the mold surfaces from 2X6s and OSB while Ben started cleaning up the rails from our measuring system. I had to make one of the mold surfaces in 2 parts, because the mold has a negative draft and would not be releasable otherwise. I added a couple 2X6s to the feet of the I-beam to give a little more space at the bottom while Ben cleaned up the 2nd rail and finished his air-bag channel reinforcement. Aaron worked on more renderings today and changed the rendering out on the opening page. Looking nice. Luke showed up this evening, and we started mounting the 2 measuring rails to the side of the table. A bit extender wore out on us, and we had to scour Durham to find one after 9:00pm. We made it back to the shop and continued to work, finishing at about 11:30pm. Luke is a trooper; I would have told me to forget it a long time ago.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

13 Mar 08

Hunt and I went out to get some supplies this morning while Zac and Ben worked on the new shop. When we came back, I started working on our next mold, which is for a brace that runs between the front wheel wells. After lunch, Zac began to set 7 more posts in concrete around the new shop. 5 were for a ramp to the front door, and 2 were to make the 2 lean-to roofs meet in a corner. Caroline cut the veneer for the new part. I made a curtain out of roofing rubber that will be used to pull the radii down on the new part, and Ben welded up a channel that will hold the airbag for the new mold. Luke and Hunt worked on the press, cleaning it up, mounting the guards, and getting it totally ready to run. Aaron worked on more renderings today. After dinner, I went back outside to weld some brackets onto an I-beam that will allow the curtain to pull down over the mold. Hunt came up to check me out and give me a couple pointers.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

12 Mar 08

Today, Hunt and I started off the morning by going to get a regulator for the new little TIG welder. When we got back, Ben and Zac had started working on the corrugated tin siding on the front of the new building. I worked on the chassis some more, getting some various odds and ends brought up to the blue room. Right after lunch, Hunt and I went to see our buddies at Durham Brazing and Welding to get a piece of stainless bent to fit our front upper suspension tower. John had it bent in no time, and we came back to the shop, at which point I started reassembling the front of the chassis. I also cut the legs off our I-beam table, and Hunt welded a new axle onto it while I worked on the chassis. After dinner, I came out and put the driver's side suspension back in place, and Hunt came up and checked it out. Caroline came home from New York by about 9:30, and I was tired, so we called it for the day.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

11 Mar 08

This morning, I started mounting the chassis back on the new table. I hot glued some spacer blocks to the pegboard and screwed the tunnel onto them, locating it at the right height. Ben and Zac spent the morning building some doors for the new shop. We are just about ready to move in there. We had a few areas where we needed to tig weld a suspension piece on the car, so we got a little 130amp inverter welder to avoid having to bring one of Hunt's behemoths up to the blue room. While Ben and Zac dug holes and started cutting the corrugated tin for the eves of the new shop, Luke and I went to the Home Depot to get some 4X4s, which the 4 of us set in concrete around the new shop for the beginnings of some much needed lean-to storage areas. Aaron worked on some more computer renderings. Tomorrow, we will get back to work on reassembling the chassis and finalizing the front suspension.

10 Mar 08

Hunt and I spent most of the day wiring the table, a task that turned out to be more tedious than previously anticipated. We ran aluminum conduit to each electrical box and connected everything in a centralized box. The tough part was the fact that we were essentially working on a ceiling that was about 3 feet off the ground. The shoulders are a little sore. We also got the blue room looking much cleaner and nicer. We made a run to the Home Depot to get a load of plywood to make doors from the new shop with tomorrow. Ben and Zac spent most of their morning making a run to the dump and the rest of the day stickering a huge load of backer that we picked up from our buddies at Atlantic Veneer a week or so ago. Aaron is really cranking out the renderings, which are exciting to see. Tomorrow, we will commence chassis work.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

09 Mar 08

I woke up this morning and finished up screwing the pegboard down. I also mounted 8 electrical boxes on the sides. Hunt and I went to the Home Depot to get some sandpaper and a wire brush so that I could clean up the sides to prepare them for paint. I spent about 2 hours sanding, brushing, cleaning and masking. After, I went down to Hunt's and helped him clean up some of the mess from the Splinter and came back to my place and did the same. Luke and his dad came by, and it was really good to see Mr. Jenkins. They didn't stay very long, and Hunt and I went back to the Home Depot to get some wiring and conduit to wire the boxes with. I finished cleaning up the blue room and went in to eat. After dinner, I came back out and painted the edges of the new table to let it dry over night.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

08 Mar 08

We decided to refine the table a little bit. Looking junkyard can be cool, but this looked a little too junkyard. So, for the sake of irony, we went to the junkyard and got some pieces to remedy the situation. I took the pegboard off and started to put down some stainless flashing and black roofing felt. The roofing felt shimmed the pegboard to the same height as the flashing. I also welded some angle iron onto the corners to clean them up. Ben came in at around lunchtime with some pizza, which he and I ate, along with Aaron, who came in to work on some renderings.
After lunch, Ben and I finished up the fitment of the stainless and began to work underneath the table. We screwed plywood to the underside of the table, which added an incredible amount of stiffness to the structure. Right before Ben left at 7, we remounted the pegboard, aligned in such a manner that the holes maintain an even pattern from panel to panel. We ate some dinner, put down some screws into the pegboard, and broke to watch the UNC/Duke game. I came out at halftime and put some more screws down, but after the game, I was too exhausted to sink any more. Tomorrow, I need to finish screwing the pegboard down, mount and wire some electrical boxes, grind down some screws, and paint the metal frame. We will have a seriously nice table soon. Now, off to bed.

Friday, March 7, 2008

07 Mar 08

Ben, Luke and I disassembled the chassis first thing this morning. We needed to get the small chassis table out to the shop to finish the new larger one, and it was pouring rain. At about 10:30, we finished taking the chassis apart and brought in the rest of our steel and set about finishing the new chassis table. Ben was on the plasma cutter while I welded. Luke helped grind and fit. Zac finished a few ends in the new shop and painted the floor. Aaron worked on more computer renderings which our turning out really nice. Luke and Zac split at around 4:00, and Ben stayed until we finished the metalwork part of the table, which was at about 5:45. I layed out 4 sheets of 3/4" tongue-and-groove OSB so that everything was square and went in to eat. I came back out and countersunk some self-drilling metal screws to attach the OSB to our table. Next, I put down 4 sheets of pegboard, of which I had to trim the edges to get a continuous pattern of 1" hole spacing.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

06 Mar 08

Hunt and I went to the Home Depot first thing this morning to get some flooring for the new shop and some trim for the edge where the wall meets the ceiling. Ben and Luke were already hard at work on fixing the axle when we got back. Ben and Zac went to work on putting in the floor and the trim in the new building while Luke and I mounted the wheels and the axle to the chassis table. Hunt came up while we were working, and we brought it on up to the blue room. After we brought it up, Zac went to work grinding the flanges on the fiberglass body molds while Ben, Luke and I worked on welding up the new chassis table around the scissors lift. Ben and I worked on until 9pm to get to the stopping point we wanted. Tomorrow, we should be able to finish it. Aaron worked until about 10:15 on a new rendering, which is the hotness. We are going to keep it under wraps for a little while, though. Sorry.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

05 Mar 08

This morning, I welded up the trailer tongue and mounted it underneath the front end of the master mold. We finally were able to get the mold out of the blue room. Luke, Ben, Zac and I then went down to Hunt's to begin preparing the chassis table to bring down to the blue room to take the place of the master mold. By lunchtime, we had jacked the chassis table up, removed the scissors lift from under it, and brought the scissors lift down to the blue room. Hunt got the top platen attached to the press using his custom brackets and the forklift. We decided to make an axle to attach under the chassis table that would allow us to bring it down to the blue room, so Hunt and I went to J&D Recyclers to see what we could find. For the rest of the day, Luke worked on aligning the 2 platens on the press; Zac worked on patching a few spots and coating the entire master mold with a coat of polyester resin; and Ben and I worked on welding and fabricating the axle and tongue for the chassis table. We got a lot done on it, and should have the chassis table up here sometime tomorrow at our leisure. Aaron is really making some progress with our renderings. We should have something in the next few days.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

04 Mar 08

Another good day on the car today. We are ready to pull the master mold out of the blue room as soon as we mount the trailer tongue. Torrential rain led us to leave it inside for the night, but tomorrow, we should be ready. Luke, Ben, Zac and I finished the sides of the mold today by adding a layer of chopped strand mat over more balsa strips for stiffness. Ben and Zac took over on the fiberglass while Luke and I worked on mounting the axle underneath the mold. Aaron worked on the computer model and made real progress today. We were excited to get another nice load of tools from our buddies at Delta/Porter-Cable that will really help us along.

03 Mar 08

Full steam ahead today. Luke, Ben, Zac and I all worked on the master mold most of the day. We applied more stiffening strips of tessellated balsa and laid a coat of chopped strand mat over the nose and tail sections for stiffness. Tomorrow we will finish the balsa on the sides and coat with chopped strand mat. The mold is so close to leaving the room, and we are itching to get it out of there, literally, from all the fiberglass work. We also had a visit from David from NC State, who took some pictures of the team and asked me some questions about our car. Hunt helped us with our mold work and started fab on the axles that we will use to get the master mold out of the garage. Aaron worked on the computer model all day again today. Zac stayed late, and Ben stayed especially late tonight with me out in the blue room. We were getting a lot done, so it was much appreciated. After they left, I went inside, had dinner and went to work on an article on the Tesla for It is my 3rd piece for them and was a lot of fun to write. Bed time.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

02 Mar 08

This morning, Hunt and I cleaned up the fiberglass mess from the last week and painted on a coat of polyester resin to remove the sticky layer of uncured resin from laying the fiberglass. We then applied some tessellated balsa ribbing for stiffness that will require 1 final layer of chopped strand mat tomorrow.
We spent some time getting the master mold and its table lifted off the floor. We ended up lag-bolting some L-brackets to the side of the table and clamping an I-beam to them, which we lifted with a farm jack and a floor jack. We put some jackstands underneath and are ready to attach some wheels tomorrow. We have to get the body master mold out of there somehow, and we figured the best way to do it would be to make it into a trailer, essentially. Hopefully we will get the chopped strand mat on there tomorrow, and maybe have the mold ready to roll out.

01 Mar 08

Well, the added day of February helped, but March is here with springtime not far behind. We are really starting to feel the timeline pressure more and more. Hunt and I put down a layer of chopped strand mat on the nose and tail by lunchtime, at which point Ben and Zac showed up. Ben, Zac, and I proceeded to put down a layer of fabmat over the entire master mold all the way up until 648pm, at which time we changed clothes at Clark Kent speed and rushed off to Greensboro. Caroline had a fashion show there tonight, and no one was going to be late for that. Ben, Zac, Aaron, Luke, Christina, Kendal, and I all made it to the show about 30sec before it started, which was worth a couple air bubbles we had to leave in our final fiberglass laminate. We went bowling after, and the whole crew was in pretty high spirits. Luke is on spring break next week and will be able to help all 5 days, so we look forward to having a big week.