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How to Mold in a Body Kit Without it Cracking?
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How to install a wide body kit.
Clean car (see prep for paint for cleaning), Pull in to work space, Disassemble, Test fit, Mark poor fitting areas, Trim, Test fit, Mark poor fitting areas, Trim, Test fit, repeat the aforementioned until the parts fit with spring clamps easily.
If your kit replaces the bumpers they will need to be removed, save ALL nuts, bolts, clips etc, you may need them later. If the front or rear kit is an add on lip (attaches to the OEM bumpers) you don’t have to remove them but they will needs to be clean. Get the car up on jack stands, wheels removed, fender liners, splash guards etc. Liners and splash cards usually get in the way.
Test fit, Test fit, Test fit (get used to it) 2
Test fit your new parts, (2) clamp using spring clamps, look for stressed areas and clearance issues, mark these areas for trimming, cut slow and don’t plan on getting it right the first time. You will need to repeat this process until the parts fit with only small spring clamps. If you have to stress the parts to keep them properly lined up, they will crack later. This step will need to be repeated until you are happy with the fit. Some kit require trimming the quarter panel sheet metal to accommodate wide wheels like the Veilside Fortune for the fd Rx7. The more complicated kits (if purchased from the original manufacturer) usually come with instructions for this.
**Molding parts (the holy grail of the wide body tech tip)
Molding is a word used for the process of grafting or gluing a fiberglass panel into a steel panel, back in the day we used fiberglass resin, matting, more resin and more matting, shaped it all up, finished it with filler and primers then waited for the everything to crack (they always did). With the process that we pioneered and perfected, we can now say, they WILL NOT CRACK!. Cracking was caused by differentiated expansion rates of materials, metal to plastic to fiberglass, they all have their own rates. Using our method creates an expansion medium that cushions this and allows the parts to live together in harmony.
Most wide body kits typically mold into the rear quarter panels. Meaning they aren't completely bolt on, or the bolt on look just wont do and the rears will need to be attached with an adhesive and molded into the panels so they look all one piece. This step we will cover in more detail as it is a little more involved.
After completing the test fit of the quarter panel add on’s and they are fitting great, Clamp them on again (this will be the phrase that pays), make sure they are were you want them, outline them with masking tape (3). this will show you where the adhesive must go and will prevent a mess later.
Remove the part and scuff the area inside the tape line with 80 grit sand paper by hand, this will provide the bonding surface for the adhesive.
The picture to the left (4) shows the scuffed area after removing the part, now take the adhesive and apply it to the panel and the part, reset the part back on the car and clamp.
You will notice not all areas of the parts edge will want to lay flat against the panel, you can use the window clamps to hold down the high spots or self tapping screws. If you decide to use the screws, we recommend using the ones with robber washers, this will distribute clamping force of the screw. Also, only snug the screws or you will create waves in the panels.
After setting the part on your panels and before the glue has set up, remove the tape and the excess adhesive that squeezed out. Its easier to remove the excess before the adhesive sets.
Allow adhesive to set before removing the screws if you decided to use them, fill the screw holes with more adhesive (6). All
Wide Body Eclipse with LSD Lambo's
allow everything to cure (24 hrs) before sanding or shaping.
We will talk more about the adhesive in our next installment. This website is ad supported so, you know what to do. Be generous…
(7) Apply your preference of fiberglass repair material such as: Evercoat Everglass, Evercoat Fibertech,
The holy grail of wide body adhesive is Fusor T-
Sometimes body kits need additional material added on the inside to allow shaping of the molded parts, sand through's of hallow parts are common but can be avoided by adding material inside the transition.
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