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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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PostPosted: May 13, 2015, 9:15 pm 
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I've been putting this off because I love this car and I keep telling myself that I'll be able to build it. The fact is that I've been facing serious health issues for some time now. I can't work on my projects or cars and it's time to accept that.

The molds that I have are 1 of 2 that I know to exist. The other set is in Europe. I have molds for every part of the car, 18 pieces in all. The molds are of good quality, heavily constructed and are straight and true. The mold surfaces themselves need to be touch up.

From posting a picture of the car on this forum and on Grassroots Motorsports forum I have about a dozen people that have emailed me wanting a body. I believe that there is a market for these bodies.

$6,500

ImageImageImage


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PostPosted: May 13, 2015, 10:53 pm 
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Man that is one beautiful car. Sorry to hear about your health problems. I know you wanted to build one of these real bad. Someone PLEASE buy these!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Russ

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PostPosted: May 13, 2015, 11:27 pm 
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Group buy? I don't have $6,500 right now.

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PostPosted: May 14, 2015, 9:15 am 
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Location: Cuba, MO
where would you get the glass for something like this?

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PostPosted: May 14, 2015, 12:36 pm 
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Glass is easy to find. There are any number of on-line suppliers like http://www.fibreglast.com/, as well as boat repair companies, and there are many auto parts stores that carry fiber glass supplies these days.

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PostPosted: May 14, 2015, 1:07 pm 
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not glass as in fiberglass but glass as in windshield and side windows.

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PostPosted: May 14, 2015, 3:24 pm 
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Hello, I am interested in the molds.
Is there contact info?
Thanks,
Chip
503-320-7391


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PostPosted: May 14, 2015, 4:08 pm 
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See, I've lost it. My name is John. email: info@bigbellybanks, 603-504-4106. This is a NH cell number. But, I live in upstate NY now.

As far as windshield glass. A mold would have to be made and glass made. This is not that difficult and cost can be amortized if it were sold as a kit. Pretty expensive for a one of though.

I do have a mold for a windscreen flange. It fits to the original windshield and provides a flange to mount a wrap around polycarbonate wind screen. I realize that this option is not street legal for some states. So, I would make a removable mount for a Porsche 550/356 windshield. While not the same contour or look it is the same over all width and is period correct. These windshields are readily available and reasonably priced. I would install the Porsche glass for registration and inspection and then remove it and run the Polycarbonate windscreen. :)Image


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PostPosted: May 14, 2015, 7:36 pm 
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"Not glass as in fiberglass but glass as in windshield and side windows."

Sorry, Chris! My bad. :oops:

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PostPosted: May 15, 2015, 2:02 am 
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stinger wrote:
As far as windshield glass. A mold would have to be made and glass made. This is not that difficult...
Tell us more! I thought molded glass windshields were crazy difficult, and crazy expensive as well.
stinger wrote:
...cost can be amortized if it were sold as a kit.
Avoiding the cost of custom windshields is one reason small manufacturers make trikes instead of cars, or so they tell me. Polished steel patterns, and two of them because the two glass components (which are glued together with the stretchy stuff that makes them shatter resistant) aren't quite identical. About a decade ago I got a quote of sixty grand for my first 200 windshields (but the price dropped a bunch after the first 200) from a windshield factory in Turkey--I was left with the impression that the secret to amortizing windshield tooling is to either make a whole bunch of cars (a la VW Golf), or a small number of very expensive cars (a a VW Veyron). So how is it done without difficulty? This isn't a hijack; a solution to the windshield issue would make your molds a lot more attractive (to me, at least).

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PostPosted: May 15, 2015, 4:00 am 
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Hello Jack,

Here is the process that I was thinking of.

1-create the shape in fiberglass. For this car I would start with a block of foam and create the shape. This gets covered with a few layers of fiberglass and finished off like a painted body part.
You have to make sure when making the mold that you allow for the thickness of the laminated glass for the finished piece.Image

2-Brace the piece (actually done before doing the body work. If using a thick block of foam to form the shape bracing probably wouldn't be required. Ship this to the windshield manufacturer

Image
3-The windshield manufacturer will build a metal jig from the mold for forming the glass.

The jig with the flat laminated glass is set in a furnace until the glass takes the form shape.

Image

The final glass

These pictures are not my work. They were posted by a guy that has done a large number of custom windshields. I did check prices years ago with a US manufacturer. I don't remember what the price was but I know that I thought it was reasonable.

I actually worked in the glass industry a life time ago and I saw glass being shaped.

Any way, this is the process I am aware of.


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PostPosted: May 15, 2015, 8:15 am 
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Location: Connersville, Indiana
That's pretty much the process I saw about 20 years ago. A sheet of glass placed on a sheet of steel, heated to the consistency of soft taffy and formed by gravity. Then cut and polished to shape. As I recall, the inside of the glass was formed by the steel.

Of course nothing is as simple as it appears, but pretty low tech when compared to something like shaping one half of a car body from a single piece of steel.

Bill


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PostPosted: May 15, 2015, 1:21 pm 
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I'm fine right up to...
stinger wrote:
3-The windshield manufacturer will build a metal jig from the mold for forming the glass.
...It's the "...build a metal jig..." part that seems not "not difficult." Can you direct me to the US windshield manufacturer with the reasonable prices?
BBlue wrote:
Of course nothing is as simple as it appears, but pretty low tech when compared to something like shaping one half of a car body from a single piece of steel.
Yep, that's why Kinetic makes fiberglass body parts. It's also why Randy Grubb sells metal bodied cars for a half million dollars.

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PostPosted: May 18, 2015, 3:12 pm 
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Well. ........
I got a preliminary estimate on windshields.
+-5,000 euro for the first one and 1,000 euro each for the next ones, in lots of ten.
http://www.coastalcurvedglass.com/

Quote:
Pat Healy <pat@coastalcurvedglass.com>

Attachments9:47 AM (2 hours ago)

to me

Hi Carson



The windshield featured on the third picture down on the discussion looks to be a very complicated piece of glass. It has a pretty sever compound bend. We wouldn’t be interested in the job due to the difficulty.



If you do go forward the full size pattern shown in the threads is exactly what is needed to manufacture a new piece of glass.



I have a friend who owns a glass bending business in Europe who manufactures prototype glass for VW, Audi, Porsche and others. I think for the first quality windshield you would be looking at around 4,000-5,000 Euros. After that every one might cost $1,000 euro if you could order at least ten of them.



Thanks





Pat Healy

Owner- Coastal Curved Glass

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PostPosted: May 18, 2015, 4:09 pm 
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Mind if I contact Mr. H about making a less dramatically compound curved windshield? Since...
> It has a pretty sever compound bend. We wouldn’t be interested in the job due to the difficulty.
...there's an implication that a less severe bend might be of interest.

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