Tuesday 4 March 2014

Fit New Front Wing

Having made the decision that I could not get a satisfactory finish on the repaired front wing I started looking around for a replacement.  There were plenty of 7" wide and 8.5" wide ones available as that is the size used by the Caterham and Westfield kits.   But my Superspec has extra wide tyres and I needed a 9.5" wide wing to fit.  These were difficult to source and those companies that had them did not do them in Oxford Blue.

Eventually I tracked down a Company that would build me a one-off pair in Oxford Blue for the surprisingly low price of £55.   Another advantage of a kit car, I suspect new wings for modern vehicles would be a lot more expensive that that.   The only problem was that their mould produced wings that were slightly shorter than mine, but I decided that I could probably cope with that.

When they arrived I found that I could not mount them on the existing support struts because they were 2" shorter.  So I had 2 options:

a).   Get the support struts remade or bent to fit.
b).   Use an auxiliary support plate that would mount on the existing struts and bolt to the wing.

Option a) would have precluded any later fitting of a full size wing and would have to be done at a machine shop.  So I decided to go for Option b) and add an auxiliary plate.   As an initial experiment I decided to use a piece of 5mm rubber to reduce stress on the wing.

So here it the rubber block bolted to the support strut and then 3" above, the wing and mud flap is bolted to the block as well.

I also took the opportunity to rubber mount the front of the wing as well, to avoid excessive stress on the fibreglass.

Here is the whole thing mounted on the car

And with the wheel on, job done !!

I decided to put off doing the nearside wing until I find out if the rubber mounting works.  If there is too much vibration I will just replace the auxiliary mount with a piece of of steel.   

I also need to see if I have to replace the mud flaps with some more that are  2" longer.  Not difficult as they are simply made from 2mm rubber sheet.  

The difference between the 2 wings is not that noticeable unless you actually go looking for it, so there is no rush to fit the matching nearside wing.

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