RJC Fury R1 Design Build Drive Gallery Video Contact Me Misc
Last page update was 21 Jan 2007

Bodywork

Styles

Fisher Sportscars  can supply various styles for the bodywork:

You then have two choices of bonnet type:

The bodywork kit supplied by Fisher Sportscars  comes in various parts. There is a bonnet, two side pods, main tub and the boot liner. My original plan was to paint the bodywork a metallic colour but, to reduce costs I'm initially going to use a plain coloured gel coat. Although the Fisher web site mentioned seven different colour finishes for the GRP gel coat, the resin for each car's gel coat is mixed specially for each car, so there is pretty much a free choice for the colour. An industry standard paint code needs to be specified to select a colour.

Aeroscreen

This rather nice picture of a Fury being driven as intended shows the clear, plain aeroscreen I intend to fit to my car.

Main Tub

This basically sits on the front bulkhead, side pods and boot floor. It is bonded to the boot floor and riveted to the chassis.

Bonnet

The Fisher Sportscars  chassis kit includes the bonnet mounting hinges and brackets. At the front of the bonnet is air duct to direct air through the radiator. It is usual to build some sort of baffle to ensure air is forced through the radiator. The 'Classic' fury bonnet features a bonnet bulge and a hole can be cut at the back of this to let air out and aid cooling. There is some thinking which suggests that this is not the best place to put them though, the resulting pressures over the bodywork actually working to reduce airflow. Side vents seem to be better in this respect.

These are some of the tidiest bonnet vents I've seen so far and don't require any special fixings. The mesh is just fixed from the inside.

One thing looks pretty certain. I'm going to have to cut away some of the fibreglass at the front of the bonnet to avoid the wheels touching on full lock.

Bonnet Catches

Typically Fisher Sportscars  use SVA compliant and rubber covered bonnet catches to fix the bodywork. I don't like the look of these things so I've bought some (shown in the picture above) made by Krontec  and which are available from Demon Tweeks . These come in three parts and as you can see, there are very expensive (Ouch, it's costing me £125 to hold the bonnet down!). They are easily the best looking solution I've seen though and are a very solid and light-weight solution too.

The top (outer) part of the catch (part number KRNBP01/S). These cost £7.60 + VAT each. Two shown.

The bottom (inner) part of the catch (part number KRNBP02/S). These cost £5.81 + VAT each. Two shown.

The quick release 'pip pins' are available cheaper from Speciality Fasteners . I'm using part number 89 05 18, where 89 is the pin series, 05 is 5/16 diameter and 18 is for 18/10 inch long. These cost about £12.69 + VAT each. I've yet to check if the pip pins are SVA compliant but I'm sure I can make them so for the test.

Bonnet Support

The Fury bonnet is hinged at the front, such that when fully open the nose touches the ground. This either chips the paintwork or people carry a piece of carpet around to rest it on. Simon's bonnet support is the best approach I've seen to solving this problem properly though, so I'm going to copy it. My support is going to be made from 10mm aluminum tube though to save weight. This will be filled with a short length of steel rod at the bent end and at the mounting point to add strength. I've also got some 10mm aluminium saddle washers (from a bicycle braking system) for the mounting bolt end.

Bonnet Seal

There are loads of bits of rubber required to seal bodywork and provide SVA compliant edges. The Rubber Trim Company  sell all sorts of suitable materials for this purpose.

Bonnet Mesh

In order to protect the radiator and to finish off the overall look of the car I want to fit some mesh over the front air duct. My plan is to use some fairly large hole (10mm), stainless steel (1.6mm) wire mesh. This will provide decent airflow yet protect the radiator from the worst of what's thrown up off the road. You need a piece about 58cm (24") by 17cm (7") to cover this air intake. I bought a piece to do all of the intakes on my car (9" x 48") from Superdials .

Headlight Covers

I've heard that Fisher Sportscars  are working on headlight covers for the classic bonnet style, which is something I had been thinking about myself. Hopefully these will be ready by the time I get to fit my bodywork.

Boot Floor

The boot floor is really a fibreglass structure to support the rear bodywork. One builders tip is to strengthen the boor floor with a rear "side" wall. Normally the rear section is bonded to the boot floor.

Rear Section

I'm going to do some major work to recess the rear lights at a later date and then respray the car. Initially the lights will be surface mounted. The rear section is bonded to the chassis but some people, especially racers modify this part to make it removable. I was very tempted to do this myself but it involves certain compromises which I don't want to make. A key one is not fixing the fuel filler cap to the bodywork.

Side Pods

The left side pod carries the exhaust. The inside of this needs to be lined with a heat reflective material. I also need to drill holes in each end of the sill and along the underside of the sill to facilitate a good airflow over the exhaust. To reduce exhaust heat into cockpit you can fit another aluminium panel on the inside of the sill, to form a double skin with a gap of about 10mm. Exhaust wrap is not recommended. The needs to be at least 25mm between the exhaust and the fibreglass and ideally 50mm.

The heat reflective material is stuck down using Evostik Timebond, which is a non-impact version of the normal Evostik. Comes in blue and red tins as a thick paste, and gives you 10 minutes or so to get the material sitting flat before it hardens.

Finish

I'm going for a 'Night Blue' (RAL 5022) powder coated chassis and roll hoops.

Simon Tait's R1 Fury was the inspiration for final finish and colour (and for a few other things as well). It is finished with a coloured gel coat in Rover 'Old English White' (paint code NNX) with a painted red stripe and vinyl gold tape over the joins.

I'm planning to use 'Old English White' gel coat finish for the bodywork and the blue stripes from this Ford GT design over the bodywork and down the side pods. It will have 'Fury R1' written where 'GT40' is currently. My chassis and roll hoops are also 'Night Blue' to match the stripes.

The other option I'm considering is the reverse of this scheme, with blue bodywork and white stripes (also found on the Ford GT).

Badges and Stickers

I'm going to add some 'R1' stickers from the Yamaha R1 motorbike to the back of the car. I will also fit a Fisher Sportscars  bonnet badge.

Screen

I'm initially planning on fitting an aeroscreen but if the weight penalty is not too big, I may consider a full windscreen. These can be retro-fitted at a later date but you then have the hassle of adding washer jets and windscreen wipers. The weight of it all!

Another downside of this plan would be that my wife may actually get in the car with me. This added degree of practicality will make road driving a more pleasurable experience though, just. It would be really good if the windscreen could be made interchangeable with an aeroscreen.

Number Plates

Sticking a normal front number plate on a Fury is not very easy. I'd really like to use a stick on plate but the DVLA  web site is very clear on the subject. Still, I know plenty of people that use them and get away with it. The best source for stick on plates seems to be Fancy Plates .

Fitting The Bodywork

Being hand crafted, the Fury body is not quite symmetrical as it comes out of the mould. All of the bodywork needs to put on together to assess fit and location before any of it is fixed to the car. This is done by what looks right and not by careful measurement, the latter being sure to frustrate. If not stored properly, the bodywork will move and warp so it is best to order it when you are ready to fit it. Typically, there is about a 2-3 week lead time on the bodywork.

The general consensus on the best way to fit the bodywork seems to be:

  1. Put the rear section on and trim the boot floor until the body sides are roughly the right height along the side of the chassis (as described in the build manual). At this stage just sit the wheels in the wheel arches.
  2. The front lip may need extending to reach the bulkhead - I think the mould is a bit short here. Use aluminium sheet and you may need to pack the front of the tub up ½" or so to get the body sides at the right height.
  3. Tape the side pods in place, ensuring the rear edge to lines up with the front of the rear wheel arch. The side of the body needs to be the right height and level. If it's too low the side pod won't fit in.
  4. Tape the bonnet onto the tub, making sure the bonnet is tight against the front of the tub (it will tend to fall away once its mounted giving you a shut line).
  5. Now you can move the whole body about to get it to sit as well as possible over the chassis/wheels. The whole thing is a 'lozenge' shape - like a rectangle that someone has leant on one corner. If you get the rear wheels equal, the bonnet points 4" off the side of the car.
  6. You may need to slide the sills fore or aft to get a good compromise on the wheel arches front and back.
  7. Mark the final position you're happy with on the body and chassis (or fix with self tappers).
  8. Once you are happy with the position, put a couple of self tappers in each side rail through the return of the tub sides, then remove the bonnet and fix the tub along the front lip, sides and bond the tub to the boot floor. You may have to revisit the trimming of the boot floor during the fitting process as it's a complex shape.
  9. You can now fit the sills properly (make sure at least the exhaust side is easily removable - rivnuts are ideal, failing that some form of captive nut.
  10. Then the bonnet - fit the hinge frame, then offer up the bonnet, tape or strap it on good and tight to the tub then drill through the hinge into the bonnet front to locate it. NOTE, you will probably have to cut the back of the bottom bonnet lip to allow it to hinge open, and you will also have to cut the bonnet, sill or both to allow the wheels to turn from lock to lock - this is fairly unobtrusive.
  11. If you are running low ride height (75mm) you may find the wheels foul on the inside of the lights on a Le Mans bonnet - no such problem with the classic.

Fitting the body is always tricky on a kit car. Measure a little bit (wheel arch to wheel, etc), but in the end the body is asymmetric and you've got to use your eye and judge the best compromise. If you can, get the car in the open so you can walk right round it and see from all angles. Get a second opinion on the position, too - it's very subjective.

Useful Links

Bodywork Care

If this car was purely for track days and racing I wouldn't bother but, since it has arrived in fairly decent condition I'm using a number of products on the bodywork in an effort to keep it looking half decent.

Clay Bar

I've used this few to remove marks and resin spills on the edges of the panels.

3M Imperial Hand Glaze

This is a non-silicone, non-wax hand glaze. It is used by hand to refine and fill swirl marks after machine glazing. This product has been formulated to work on all colours and can be painted over. It adds a wet look gloss to both GRP and painted metal bodywork, prior to waxing. It offers no protection to the bodywork finish at all. This stuff has to be seen to be believed.

To use: Start with a clean, freshly washed and dried vehicle. Shake the Imperial Hand Wax well, and apply to a clean microfibre towel or applicator pad. Using a firm circular motion, apply the glaze to one vehicle panel at a time, carefully spreading it in uniform consistency. With another dry, clean towel gently wipe clean. Polish entire car to a brilliant luster.

Harly Wax

This is a quality wax that was recommended to me by the various Lotus communities that I follow. It is easily the best wax I've ever used. Unlike the Hand glaze, Carnauba wax does not require any pressure. Before you apply the wax to your car, dampen the applicator pad with water. This helps to prevent the wax soaking back into the pad and makes the wax go further on the panel. Wax one panel at a time, and then buff off immediately. There isn't much advantage to letting the wax haze on the panel. Make sure the panels are cool, and work out of direct sunlight.

RJC Fury R1 Design Build Drive Gallery Video Contact Me Misc
Copyright © Robert Collingridge 2004