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CHANGES

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  1. JPS #044 continuation Moving on from the GRP lay up on main damaged areas, we need to flat back to establish uniform thickness and shape.. Because the GRP is a tough substrate it take quite a bit of sanding and shaping to get right .. As i said previous we can not just attack it with a grinding disc , it needs progressive flatting.. During this process we also make sure there is no air pockets trapped between the layers .. So far i have none but they can happen and if not addressed can give you problems later .. This is the point where my processes start to differ from what was done on giorgio67 in previous post .. At this point instead of applying filler then sealers and primers , I coat the whole repaired area in a GRP tissue bridging coat .. In the case of #044 that will involve doing virtually the whole of the shell. This will provide a completely sealed and very stable layer as a foundation for the next stage. As i have said before this is not an easy substrate to flat out which is why most will avoid this stage . As you can see i am putting a grey tint in the resin . This is so i can see where has been coated while at the same time providing a guide to over flatting the finish .. Although it would not be an issue flatting through i try not to , thus maintaining a fully sealed coat ... With the grey tint you can see when its getting a bit thin in spots so time to stop. The last two pics show show that stage complete on those sections. Because of the curing time of the GRP we have to jump from section to section to keep the flow of work .. So we now move back to the roof.. This was flatted in the same way as the other repairs establishing shape and required thickness.. Then the tissue layers were applied .. Once this had cured for a few days i checked how close the profile was. This was surprisingly close . For those who have followed my previous threads , you will have seen me use this method on an original roof of similar age 'G' Esprit. On that one like most originals it had sunk over time to a worse situation than this repaired version .. The up side is the next stages should be a bit easier that the last one, requiring less shape building to get final profile .. So till next update back to more flatting .. Oh so much dust .. !!!
  2. @giorgio67 You certainly seem to have a lot of fillers to deal with .. It seems the previous repairer chose not to use GRP .. The problem with those sort of repairs is routing out the extent of the gel crack .. It will only be possible by removing all the layers in the effected area's and associated stress points then applying a stain to expose it .. This is why on jobs like 044 i just remove all gel coat on damaged panels , it minimises any risk of crack appearing in finished repair .. You will note i always grind back the badly effected areas, then replace with as close to the original thickness of panel as possible. I do this to prevent sinkage or distortion that can appear later as the composites fully dry out ... This can take months and be effected by temperatures . Are you going to apply a GRP tissue bridging coat to seal in your repair Or just prime .. ? They all have their challenges , maybe this is more what you had in mind.
  3. This week saw some more relentless sanding to remove the cracked gel coat . Unless you have done this you can not appreciate what a Naf job this is .. The problem is you can not just hack at it with a grinder , it needs a certain degree of finesse. The reason being it will form the base you will be building on , so the more even it is the easier the next stage will be .. The grey coat is the primer , the white the sealer coat , the pink is the gel coat , This all has to come off this shell as there is to much crack to localise sections .. When i looked at the lower section of this quarter panel I spotted two bad area's that I marked, but to the left of the top one you can see a spiders web gel crack appeared with the dust .. Just as well I decided to do the all .. Apart from surface gel crack this panel was quite good . The section with the GRP layer did show deep cracks from the collision flex . These were ground out and the GRP applied . On the other quarter where we showed the poor cut joint, we applied a couple of layers of the chopped matting to the inside when we did the roof .. When this had time to cure I ground out the long taper as i did with the roof , but this time down to the new inner layer .. Then using the same progressively larger sheet of matting I filled the taper back with layers to original thickness with max strength.. The same procedure was carried out on the rear panel in the two area's where the cuts had been made.. In this case because the inside was very accessible the previous repairer had applied an inner layer , unfortunately the outer layer was mainly filler and a poor joint as the other was .. So doing the same process as other sections we can restore the original strength while providing a quality substrate for the next layers .. After the roof had cured out , the former was removed from the inside . This was then sanded back to smooth the joint . This came out absolutely spot on, but i forgot to take a 'pic' before applying the weave tape over the joint , then a tissue layer over the whole area .. The inside now conforms to the original shape , it will have a light sanding when fully cured to just smooth finish ready for roof lining .. This week we also set about the front panel . This had a lot of gel crack with impact damage on both corners .. The seams on the front had cracked free directly behind the front of the headlamp bucket.. This area does not have an inner bridging layer and relies in the joints paste to hold it .. Hence the reason it split apart .. I manage to to fiddle in some inner bridging layer through the indicator hole and from the front compartment , enough to hold firm whist we ground back the outside. Then in the same way as previous we applied GRP to reshape and strengthen the corner area's .. All of these area's done so far will need extensive sanding to establish the correct shape before the next layers are applied .. So next week more sanding and dust to come along with itchy scratchy ..
  4. Its just a Type of matting used .. Here is a pic of the 3 most common i use .. left to right .. 450 chopped strand matting, tissue matting , weave strip . All these are applied with the resin coat , The weave us put in stress or edging area's , 450 matt for general build and repairs , tissue is for a finishing coat, it will all become clear as the thread progresses .
  5. No. This will not be the case . The purpose of grinding back a taper on the upper face is to replace the original thickness with as much overlap as possible for strength.. The two full layers are to create a uniform fully bonded surface .. This will need comprehensive flatting to get the smooth profile correct .. Once the flatting process and checking is done a final application of GRP will be applied with a tissue finish for refinement .. If we did a build on the inside as the outside as you were assuming , it would massively increase the thickness and weight of the panel . When the former is removed a light sanding will be done to smooth the joint area before fully assessing the situation .. I expect it will need no more than a layer of weave and possible a tissue layer to fully encase and bond the joint area . I will cover this when we get to that stage ..
  6. Thanks .. The reason they sink over time is usually because the profile is incorrect.. The slight upward curve acts like an Arche , so in the heat with expansion it should rise not sag .. However this is only fully effective if the inside profile is consistent to the outside and the thickness uniform over full area.. All logical really, but maybe overlooked in some cases..
  7. This is something that is made for the particular job.. I used sheet steel cut to the shape of the hole but 60mm wider in all directions .. I form rolled the edges which introduces a curvature close to what is needed.. I will never be exact, but dam close .. I then used the old sunroof clamping frame from the inside to add some rigidity, whilst at the same time it refined the curvature to match the roof section . Because the curvature is so slight when applying any downward force the steel can flex or invert the curve if pressing hard enough in the centre.. To prevent this happening when applying the GRP layers, a centre support was also fitted .. None of the supports were under tension, but positioned in a way to stop any flex and movement when being worked on .. The aim is to get as close to the same thickness of GRP as original , but more important is to maintain a uniform thickness over the complete panel .. Slightly thicker is preferable to thinner..
  8. This sadly is so common and as I said in the recent OOP's repair thread, once the paint is on the customer does not get to see what or how its been achieved .. Hopefully these threads will expose the short cuts made for profit and enable the owners to be more knowledgeable should they be unfortunate enough to need a repair . Acceptable methods will vary from one repair shop to another , which is why I always try to gather as many photo's for the customer whilst doing the job . They can then share the involvement and better understand what has been done and why ..
  9. Well it did not leak due to fitting, It was stuck in with no intensions of it ever needing removing.. The leak must have come from the seal to the glass.. Needless to say the sun roof was a real pain to get out , but with patients it eventually came free without damaging the roof .. The smashed screen was a messy job but all done and out of the way .. This is where we start the voyage of discovery . As we saw from the external pics of the repaired quarter , it was looking a bit ' ify '. So before starting to sand off the paint and gel coat , I decide to have a good look inside the section.. To my surprise there was no GRP layers at all .. On closer inspection the joint did not even seem to but up. In addition to that, the but faces were clean . This means the only thing attaching the sections is a thin skin of GRP bridging the outside .. This would explain why the repair was so visible.. Also the the imperfect panel profile .. Upon sanding off the paint , we encountered filler, followed by a thin GRP layer over the joint . Very weak and poor !!!. What we were left with was a 5mm gap between the sections.. I decided to leave a couple of small area's not fully sanded , so the shape could be retained whilst I applied a GRP layer to the inside to re-stabilize it , before starting the next step . The above pic was how it started to appear when removing the surface layer . The one below is how it appeared when all flatted out .. It is difficult to show on a pic how clean that joint was, I did not touch it , that is how it came out .. I think this is a classis example of measure twice cut once . It would seem by how parallel the cut joint is, time was taken to cut neatly , but they got the measurements wrong.. Uhmm .. Some nasty impact GRP crack also came to light on the new section , this will need fully grinding out .. The next area to get started on is the roof .. First job was to sand off all the paint and gel layers in preparation for filling in the sun roof hole .. In the above pic you can just make out the thickness of the panel, which will need recreating across the hole . The first task was to make a profile blank to bridge the hole , This had to fit neatly and slightly curve in both plains. The profile section was supported from the underside , without any vertical pressure, so as not to distort the original form. Once happy with the fit and shape I could start grinding off a large taper area around the hole . This left a razor sharp edge where the new and old section join . A release wax a release agent was carefully applied to the profile so it can be removed when the new roof is formed over it .. When all prepped. the new GRP layers can be applied . I started with 1 layer the same size as the hole, then 4 more each getting progressively bigger to neutralise the taper that was ground in . Finally two full layers were applied .. This now needs to be left for several days to fully cure before i can continue this section .. Next week, I will start to get that quarter panel back as it should be.. '' Uhmm ...loads more itchy scratchy to come ''
  10. SET UP and PLANNING.. Here we are at the start of the body restoration on JPS # 044 .. There is evidence it has had previous repair work, with a half rear quarter section put in .. Unfortunately this has not been done that well and is very easy to see.. As we have said in previous threads , any impact repair on GRP has to be explored with consideration of how far the gel crack will travel .. The usual stress points along with the direct connected area will all crack .. In the case of # 044 this consideration was not taken into account and some time after the repair all the gel crack has exposed itself .. I am sure the person who did the original repair was not aware this would happen, but as you will see from the photo's it is quite severe. These cracks stop in a straight line exactly where the new section was butted up to .. I have marked the worst area's , but to be fair they are not that difficult to spot . Stress cracks are very apparent in the seams of the 'B' and 'A' posts , both sides , but more prominent on the N/S .. The shell has also flexed on the o/s rear quarter with gel crack spreading all down that panel aswell . We also have flex area's in the front compartment that will need addressing, It also appears to have impact damage on the front that has not yet been repaired , but has split the front seam and caused extensive gel crack to the front panel . Both headlamp pods have seen better days and will need some creative reconstruction. The only other main area to cover at this point is the roof.. It has been fitted with after market sunroof , which the customer wants removing and putting back to original .. There is also some gel crack in the usual spots. I will cover all the other points as I go through the main shell , section by section . The panels will addressed later in the thread.... First job is to get that smashed screen and the old sunroof out .. Let the fun begin..
  11. I would like to say thankyou to @Djs44 for the opportunity to be involved in the bodywork part of this project , along with patiently waiting several months for a workshop slot . The body shell and most of the parts are now in my work shop.. First I will be making a list of all the parts needed whilst doing the main procedure assessment , along with setting up ready to start .. So this section does not interfere with this particular thread, I will run a separate thread purely on the body repair, correction, and painting process. For those interested this thread will be headed JPS # 044 body restoration.. and will start sometime next week .
  12. It is always nice to see the customers so pleased with the outcome .. It is also nice to see them drive it hard to understand what it can do and how it feels .. After demonstrating the cornering and chicane ability , along with the traffic island test that @Sparky has been on, it was great to see John push the right foot down and get his Esprit to sit down and assume the rotational balance on said island test . I have no doubt John will enjoy many hours of fun with this ride quality and handling . Thankyou John for giving me opportunity to work on your Esprit . Dave ( in this case quite a few Changes)
  13. Now all finished and fully commissioned ready for John to collect tomorrow. FROM THIS TO THIS THEN THIS Well it was quite an involved repair, it took a bit longer to do with other area's being addressed at the same time . A short test drive and MOT , then off to Northampton Motor Sport to be set up with full GEO and corner balancing .. Then full test drive to confirm everything works as it should something to reflect on ... The new composite roof D
  14. In the 412 thread pages 5 and 12 , also some detail in the feature section , 'Take an Esprit and make a few changes part III , Engine' dated sept 2011.
  15. I have had it so long that its not a current model, however , it is the fold away type like the CFC 100 . Mine has a total length is 57'' at full stretch with the jib as far as it will go out on the boom .( hole 4) . This is measured on the flat top section from the cranked point.. The distance you need to span when lifting engine and box together is circa 48'' .. this is 4'' passed the bell housing to engine joint, overlapping the engine side .. with 1'' clearance to the bumper .. ( the bumper to back of the engine block is 43'' ) The the remaining 11'' is taken up with allowance for the protruding hydraulic lift mechanism.. ( with a small cushion left.). I also use the CLL500 which helps spread the load .see pic . I have never had any issues moving an engine and box around on this crane. I only split the engine and box in situ, when just the box needs removing .. If you need the engine out it is easier to remove the lot in one go .. I hope this give you all the data you need to make the right choice. Sorry i can not be more specific as to part numbers , but you should be able to measure a CFC100 at your local machine mart to make comparison .. If you do this remember to allow for the encroachment of the lift mechanism at bumper height, see pic 3 by the protection sponge .. D
  16. Never had any issues with the Clark engine lift crane. Had this one for years. Lost count how many Esprit engine it whips in and out as single engine and box unit .. Best to use a Clarke levelling frame at same time to balance the load .. In the series of pics you can see I level up before fitting and drop in without tilting .. Not that difficult to get in or out this way with a little pre planning. PS. Always worth having that bit of protective sponge on the bumper , because the crane goes close.. You will have enough to keep your eye on without worrying about damaging the bumper paint with the crane .. Hope that help with your question ..
  17. First stage of colour flat and polish done .. Panel align and fit done .. A few fiddly bits to finish off before we move onto interior ..
  18. In answer to @drdoom on floor and Arch finish, it is as @Fridge answered Raptor is a great aftermarket product. Just for information purposes I did 2k colour on my own Esprit which has lasted exceptionally well in the main but waring on some of the excess traffic points . In answer to @fjmuurling the answer @sailorbob gave is correct with grade 8.8 or higher . A bit longer is fine as long as you have enough thread length , Always remember to allow for the tracking spacers which will vary car to car .. ( Next up more Guide coat and , yes you guessed it FLATTING ) So here we go again , 2k high build tinted primer fully cured . First job is a quick tack rag and then guide coat, this time in white for obvious reasons.. Because the primer surface has a fine grain we can wet flat without to much concern of moisture being retained. This process is much the same as previous, repetitive i know but all part of the job.. A lot of shops will do this by machine , however i prefer to do it by hand to be more in control of any unseen defects, even at this stage .. A machine is much less work and a fraction of the time, but it does not have the touch or feel, so can lead to rub though or missing the odd high /low spots .. Once completed we can concentrate on the blend points on areas not primed. In this case it was mainly the front compartment . They were feathered into original surface , then masked using soft mask / roll off . Next job is to prep the shop for colour paint with static sheet etc , suit up, then spirit wipe and tack rag the shell. Then base / colour coat is applied, first a temp check , then set up gun to suit and shoot colour. One grip it coat followed by two full coats .. making sure we get all the returns coated.. After a flash off period, I use a daylight light to check the metallic is evenly applied all over... All was OK so another light tag rag all over just to insure surface is free from inclusions ... During this process it is not unusual to find the odd bit in the paint, these can be nipped out with 1500 paper and flashed over if needed .. as it turns out we were clean in this case , so it was onto clear coat .. We applied one grip it coat the two full coats , short flash off followed by final full flow coat .. The finish went on very clean , but still has some orange peal in the finish .. This is expected and will be removed in colour flatting after several days of gassing out .. All the panels and parts were prepped and painted in the same way over the next few days.. Next up, first stage colour flat , polish , then start assembly.. TBC
  19. Thanks for sharing.. best puzzle for a long time .. Two days of stress to find out your first diagnosis was spot on. I think we will put that in the memory box under experience to remember.. The plus side is all the other faults you found and fixed during the search .. The customer is going to be all made up when he gets it back .. well done , pure dedication .. time to relax
  20. @Steve4012 Yes either method will be fine . Different shops have different methods and products. This comes from what they have been using during training or what they have found works best for them .. I think the one common thing is the repair where gel crack or damage is, or could be ! A re-gel or GRP with finish mat as i have done on this one Will insure the quality of the repair .. I would not rely on just filler and a Reface primer in those area's , its will not have such a good bridging quality as a mat would .. If all the crack has been removed then this is not such an issue , however experience over the years has taught me you can never be 100% sure where impact damage is concerned . Where you are just renewing the substrate quality then a full sand back and application of any of those products should achieve the desired result.. One of the most important parts is to seal in / isolate so that solent soke down will not soften the repairs or original surface leading to mapping much later on .. Sounds like the guys you are talking to know their stuff, so many just repair prime and paint.
  21. Thanks for the prompt. Even though i offer all the services in house, I doubt it will be cost effective to send the Esprit from the US to the UK restore and return .. nice thought though .. If @Mrtiticus would like to PM me I am happy to go though the prelimaries , to give him some idea..
  22. I wear a coverall, same as i use when spraying, and a suitable mask , then sweep and vacume up after each section .. You would be amazed how much dust you get .. If i had used a machine or air tool to sand ,it would go everywhere, even the ones with extractors are not much better . Its bad enough as it is , not the most confortable job to do .. I expect that is why it gets short cut in a lot of shops .. I tend to have the extractors on at the same time which can pull a lot of air bourne dust away , but it still settles .. So a blow down and clean up at the end of each day is a must . Just all part of the job.
  23. So back to body work .. We left it at the polly coat stage , This was three full coats of polly wet on wet with short flash off in between .. Because this goes on so thick it leaves a heavy orange peal effect on the surface .. This is fine, we looking for film thickness not finish.. A drop coat of back, called guide coat will give us a visual gauge for when all this orange peal has been remove .. From pic above you can see how the guide coat exposes the extent of the orange peal. This can be a slow process depending on how aggressive you are with your intial paper grit .. I tend to start with a 240 they move to a 400, but this can vary job to job .. The important thing is not to rub through but to just flattern the finish .. The polly coat is none pervious to solvent so acts as a barrier coat as well as a levelling layer .. To reduce the chance of rubbing through I leave the swage lines or prominent features till the end , then just lightly address them after .. next pic show the prominent point on the rear 1/4 being left .. Above pic shows after a flat withn 240 grit. This will now get another guide coat and the process repeated with 400 grit .. I do all this dry as the micro structure of the polly coat can hold moisture .. This is not an issue if you can be sure it can be fully dried out before next coat .. Failure to do this can cause micro blitering to appear in the finish some time later .. You will notice a finer finish on the above pic which exposed the flatting lines of the 240 grit and further refines the finish. This is carried out on the whole body , and will expose any failings on the panel form from repairs .. The n/s front wing as you may recall was completly reskinned , so this stage will show how acurate the re-shaping has been .. You will note a few low spots in black near the front. These will get flatted till they remove or go through .. Any area that gets rubbed through , will be recoated with same polly coating and process repeated till satifactory .. This same process is also repeated on the bonnet /doors etc .. As we have always said , a lot of flatting.. but its all about preparation .. The next stage is to put it all in a 2k primer . The colour of the primer should always be a consideration , based on the final colour. Some final colours will have designated high pigment undercoats , others unspecified. As this is going to be Azure blue it points to a black under coat but not specified . We can use a black primer , but i prefer to soften it to more of a blue black . This will cut out an undercoat being required and also allow the colour to be more vibrant and pop . In the pic's below it looks more dark grey but in reality you can see a blueish tinge . Next up more Guide coat and , yes you guessed it FLATTING . But getting closer ..
  24. I did mention the speed sensor, but omitted to mention the Drive Shaft.. you will need at least one later spec drive shaft with a trigger wheel on .. This is the same trigger wheel that is used for the ABS system on later Esprit .. The rear drop link hub would also need drilling to accommodate the sensor. A cheaper and alternative option would be to use an ABS trigger wheel from the front hub off later models.. This will fit your earlier hub type . You would also need to obtain the front sensor brackets or manufacture something to facilitate .. You will also need to look into wheel/tyre circumference, as the ECU you have will be set for the rear n/s wheel/tyre size of that model .. All small details but worth being aware of .. The above pic shows on the 'left' the trigger wheel I refer to. You will need that type because the ECU will only recognise that tooth count . The one on the right was what I moved over to for a clearer signal, but i can program my ECU to except any tooth count and wheel size. Hope this helps..
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