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    Esprit s3

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  1. Hi all, Just another small update but theres hours going into these wheel tubs, theyre pretty slow going! but they are getting there. Now i have got all the space there possibly is tu use for the fear suspension movement. The inside wheel tub is now touching the inside of the NACA duct on the backend. At full bump on a 19" rim the chassis is 75mm from the floor, and just a comparison pic of the original 17" tire on the other side which leaves less than 25mm between chassis and ground at full bump. No there is enough room in the arch im working on how it joins to the backend when the backend is closed. I want the inside of the arch to be as seamless as possible so it doesnt collect road muck and im building in a step that helps stop any water making its way past into the rear bumper and it also halps locate the rear end and bumper tegether when closed. Cheers
  2. Hi all, Happy new year to you all Thank you TAR Just another little update on some of the jobs i did before the year ended. Ive been working more on all 4 wheel arches, both front are now cut and repositioned ready for glassing. Ive also brought the rear bumper and doors out from storage so they can be worked on at the same time. And i also had a quick tidy up as i was knee deep in filler dust! Cheers
  3. Hi all, A little more progress has been made. I have thickened up the return flange around the RH door, this was because in places it was a little too narrow and would be difficult to mold later and also i need a wide flange around the edge of the mold for the vacuum bag to stick too. I have also done most of the work needed to catch the LH rear arch up to the same stage as the RH rear arch, only a little more todo now before i decide on rim width's and offsets, but the body needs to go onto the chassis before i can do that. In an effort to do something other than sanding filler, today i have been mocking up ideas for how i plan to do the roll cage and the bulkhead areas behind the seats that enclose the fuel tanks. The tube in the pictures is a little thick at 55mm as i plan for the main hoop to be 50mm and the rest of the cage will be 40mm keeping it inline with the MSA designt regs. Comments and criticisms appreciated Cheers
  4. Hi all, I though id update you all as more progress has been made on the project for those of you intereted I apologise if the writing below is a bit cut and paste but i think it makes sense along with the pictures. The last few months have seen quite a change in the f40 now, as you can see in the pictures the tub is now bonded together and the majority of the cab rear bulkhead has been finished. I have layed up the reare wheel tub since these pictures so next step is to finish the left hand rear arch and a little work on the L/H cab window and vent. Then the plan is to lift the shell off its current table and ive bought a chassis table so that will come into the workshop and my Esprit chassis will be bolted to that them my body can be fitted to the chassis. Once the fitment is sorted i have already bought a roll of carbon/kevlar hybrid weave to skin the inside of the shell. once all this is bonded in i have also bought a tube bender so i can design and build a prototype roll cage that will also bolt to the chassis. This will be tacked together inside the shell so i can cut it out of the body later when the molds are done then a jig can be made. Eventually the roll cage will bebuilt and bonded into the shell during construction. Final stage is to then buy the custom wheels and tires to final check all clearences and to paint the shell. Then i can finally start to make the molds! Another small update on some of the jobs done over the last couple of weeks. Ive been working more pn the RH rear arch, i bought a part worn 345/35/19 to continue checking the arch shape, all seems good so far, i need to do a little more work on the arch curve before being able to put the radius' onto the lip. Ive also started to finalise the front end location and fitment. Its now locked down square to the body and ive cut apart the LH front arch to finalise the shape, size and location i want. I havent completely decided on what wheel and tire size to use on the front yet, whether to balance out the wheel size and have matching 19 like the rear, but id have to run quite a low profile to keep the circumference down, something like a 225/30/19. Or to more match the tire profile with something like a 235/40/18. Im not a huge fan of super low profile and the 345/35/19 has quite a big sidewall so id like to balance that out on the front. Ive also now buzzed most of the body down to 400 grit. i still have repairs to do, and parts need blocking down but im pushing towards getting the shell ready for primer. Im currently widening the flanges around the door openings to make laying up around the sharp corner easier later on. Comments and criticisms appreciated Cheers
  5. Hi all, It is with a heavy heart that i write this but i have to be realistic about my F40 project. It has been over a year again now since i have managed to work on the F40 and the build its self has been going for over 13 years now on and off. At no point in those 13 years has my love for this car or project changed, but that hasnt stopped life from getting in the way of the progress of the project. I am also my own worse enemy and im a stickler for detail and this has seen me re-do many aspects of the car numerous times each time trying to achieve a better level of finish while also making the end build for the customer easier. It would have been easy to have molded the body long ago without any though as to how it would ever fit to any kind of donor vehicle after, this would have then been upto each builder to work out on their own which would make the final builds complicated. My decision to use the Lotus Esprit S4 V8 TT as a donor was to enable the final build to be as simple as possible while also having a replica who's underpinnings matched it's perfomance exterior. Whereas a replica body like this is usually bonded and glued onto the existing body work of the donor vehicle, with this design it completely replaces the donor body and is fitted to the chassis with only 12 bolts, this means that there is hardly any panel alignment to be done except for hanging the doors, as well as the front and rear end. With this being a replacement body onto an exisiting chassis, it means that it does not need to be IVA'd to be used on uk roads. The project is now at a stage where i need to invest money into materials to produce the molds from the plug you have seen me building in the pictures. While this isnt an extortionate amount of money it is enough to bring a project like this to a stop because im at a point in my life, with a young family and other commitments, which mean that i connot afford to put the money into it. I will never sell this project and if i have to chip away at it until my retirement then that is what i will do but really this project deserves to be finished in a quicker time frame. So realistically im now at a point where i have decided to see if anyone out there is interested in investing in having the first rolling shell produced for them self. If someone was to step forward and order the first rolling shell it would enable me to dedicate almost my entire working week to the project which would enable it to be finished within a decent time period. This isnt going to be the cheapest replica going, and i will make a rough list below of some of the build costs to give you an idea: Lotus Esprit S4 V8 TT donor around £25,000. The Lotus body, wheels and interior can be sold returning around £10,000 or more. F40 replica wheels tires £5,000 Ferrari 308 windscreen, door window frame + glass, replica rear screen, cab rear window + side windows, replica headlight covers £5,000+ One of my relica bodies, molded using replice carbon/kevar wover fabric, fitted to the lotus chassis with doors hung and the front and rear end hung. This will be around £30,000 depending on spec and negotiations with the customer. Im open to negotiate with someone over the exact build spec they would like right up to a turnkey finished car, and at minimum i am looking to work with someone to have the first body fitted to a donor rolling chassis. If anyone out there is seriously interested in this project then please PM me and communications can go from there. Many thanks
  6. Hi all, I have been back onto the F40 over the last couple of months trying to make a final push to get the shell finishd and to start making moulds, it's been 11 years now so it would be nice to move on to another aspect of the build! It started with me spending half a day just tidying up the workshop so i could get to her, then i dusted it off and degreased the body. First i decided to build the passenger side (n/s/f) front arch as i didnt get around to it before. First i had to re-setup the tube and clamps for the top return. Once done and taped i gel'd it red and layed a few layers onto it. Then it was onto filling the big hole that was where the drivers floor pan is meant to be. I layed up a flat sheet of grp that was 6mm thick like the rest of the floor pieces, this time black instead of red as i have run out of red. Once cured i pulled the sheet from the mold and with a few measurements i trimmed it to size and dropped it into the drivers sie floor. This was also the time to finish up where the sill, floor and inner arch meet ready for bonding, once i was happy i layed a layer over the joins. While i was at it i put a couple of layers inside the drivers side suspension turret. The floor pans are now almost done and i have started to finish up the front of the tub. With the floor pans almost done it was time to do one of the jobs i have been putting off for quite a while. The major down side of fitting my body to the Lotus chassis was the wheelbase being just over 2 inches shorter on the chassis than my body. Now the body has been aligned to the front wheels it meant that the 2+ inches had to be sorted out in the rear arches. In the end it didnt work out too bad, its not easy cutting up a panel that your happy with though. To move the rear arch i cut behind the door so the join lines will be easier to blend. The arch is now 3 inches bigger which is good because i had built them with too little space around the tire before. Also i now plan to run 19 inch wheels instead of the 17's they originally had. 19's will mean i can run bigger brakes and it will be easier and cheaper to buy tires as alot more cars run the 19's. Im now looking at running 345/30/19 on the rear instead of 335/35/17. With the arch moved i have been filling and blocking back the arch to get the shape back and today i have started to fit the inner wheel tub back in. The arch lip still needs shaping. Apologies for the picture dump but it seems the best way to catch you all up......
  7. Thanks for all the kind comments about my project guys, I havent been able to touch the F40 for a while so very little has changed, I need to do a large resin order before i can continue. Instead i have spent most of my time lately working on my Davrian, ripping it appart, so still playing with fiberglass! Cheers
  8. Cheers mate, i will try to keep my progress logged here as good as possible. There is a wealth of knowledge on this forum that i will need once i get past the body making stages!
  9. Hi all, Been working on the tunnel and starting the floor pans. I built a former out of wood so I could build the grp tunnel onto it. Then trimmed the pieces to length, There is a 50mm wide strip that runs around the opening in the floor where the chassis fits through, this lifts the chassis above the floor so a cover can be fitted completing the flat floor underneath the car. I then started to piece in the rear bulkhead around the engine bay, next is the main floor areas and to build the rear bulkhead into the rear wheel tubs. Comments always appreciated Cheers
  10. Hi all, I got a little more done to the front of the tub, its only glued and screwed at the moment, i will glass it together when i have added the last few parts. Cheers
  11. Hi all, Got a little more done today, I have mocked up the top mount where the shock fits. I have built the tub around the top so i can bolt the tops to roll cageand triangulate them to the dash bar and door bars. Im after a s3 pedal box if anyone can point me in the right direction? Cheers
  12. Hi all, Sorry if this post is a bit pic heavy, and if the writing and pictures dont exactly correlate. I cut and pasted this from another forum. I will be keeping this thread upto date in future. The lotus chassis has been taken out from under the body shell and stored. We have set up a table infront of the cab so we can set up and finish the fitment of the front end. Today i cut the flange off from the underside of the front bumper and im fitting a piece of 6mm grp sheet i had lying around, i have decided the front bumper will be attatched to the chassis and the bonnet will hinge from it. It will be a much nicer way to finish it as the brake and radiator ducts can all be fixed into place, it also helps with my plan for the car to have a flat floor. i have also started to fit the lower half of the inner arch as these will be molded in. .................... We have now been over the body and made a complete list of all the jobs that are left to be done, its quite a big list but we are knocking jobs off. Today im working on the rear wheel tub to get it upto the stage of the other one. We have now found a supplier of the 308 screens at a very reasonable cost, £300 delivered. So next week we will be ordering one so we can fit it into the plug to check the fitment before we mold anything. Once we know the screen fits we can fit a wiper arm and motor (we're going to use one from an x300 xj6, single wiper, cheap and plenyful) as this will need a dimple on the scuttle so the arm aligns to the screen properly. Then we can finish the front bulkhead, first by putting a water channel under the screen, then make clearence for the front wheels and the flat end to the footwells. In an above post i said we would now leave the floor pan till after we have molded the body but it looks more likely that we will now do it at the same time so once we are done with making molds we can move on to finally building a car! Yesterday i borrowed a pair of original 308 doors from a steel bodied car. I used these to check the door window fitment into my shell and im happy to say it all fits well. I need to buy a set of window frames by the end of the year so i can finish my door moldings. I have aslo been looking into wheels and tire again, i wont need them until the molds are done and i fit the first body to my chassis. Tires for the original size are really expensive because its only the f40 and diablo that used 335/35/17, the tires are actually more expensive than the custom image 3 piece wheels! But i started looking around and if i went for 325/30/19 instead the tires are actually quite cheap because lots of modern supercars use them. Image also offer a copy of the f40 wheel im 19inch so i can stick to the original look just bigger. Im hoping it will make the car look a little more modern? any thoughts? ................... i have been working on the rear 1/4 windows because they were lacking in detail in a few places. The shape in the picture is how the window will look with the glass in. I have to mold it like this so the mold will pull off the plug. Once the mold is make i can make a removable insert that will fit to the mold and will give you the recess for the glass in the final moldings. I have also completely cut apart the vent on the left hand side as i wasnt happy with it or the curve of the window but its looking much btter now. .................... I have also been working on how i am going to finish the top of the pillars at the front of the sill and how they will join the front end. The final version will be very similar to what is pictured but the pins will be stainless. These just locate the sides of the front, i am planning on having sprung catches to hold the hood down. ...................... Yesterday we had a 308/328 windscreen delivered so today i test fitted it, The fit around the top and sides is excellent but there was about an inch gap between the bottom of the screen and the frame.... So i cut the lower part of the frame out of the body and reattached it correctly. I have also been blocking thebody down with 120 grit, all pretty smooth now, should be able to get some 2k primer on once we have the next few body mods done. I now have the screen frame bonded back in and the screen now fits well and only needs minor adjustment. ............................... Next its time to work on the 'A' pillars and to start to finish up the front bulkhead and wheel tubs. I then replicated the Lotus chassis in ply wood so i have the mounting faces in the right places and clearence where i need it, the only thing missing from it at this point are the strut tops, they will go in soon. Then bent a flexible sheel of flate grp round to form the inner wheel tub, it returns under the screen to give the front wheels as much clearance as possible It was then gel'd red and layed up with glass, this is how it looked with the grp sheet popped off.. I also started to lay up a thick flat sheet of grp today, this will be cut up and pieces put shiney side onto the plywood then bonded together to form the chassis foor, next i have to remake the end of the sill so it blends into the inner arch..... .............................. I struck the sheet of 6mm grp that i layed up the other day and i have started to put together the front of the tub where it sits on the chassis and clears all the front suspension. Its only dropped onto the former for now, it will all get aligned properly,then glued into place before i bond it all up. The top 3 pieces need cutting up and lifting in the middle leaving a 25mm raised section, this return makes it all stronger and will act as an opening so the rad pipes and brake lines can be accessed. This opening will have a lid on top that will carry the battery. The front of the tub has a large curve because im going to mount the rad upto the front of it and all hot air will be ducted out under the car. This is the last of the pieces the go around the front of the chassis, i also cut the piece for the end of the drivers foot well. I need to re cut the side piece as i am now going to put a 25mm taper on the end of the footwell and infront of the lower arm, This makes it come out of the mold easier and access to the suspension bolts is much easier. ...........................
  13. Thanks for the comment buddy, Plan is to fit a 4.2 audi v8 and manual audi gearbox but that is still a little way off yet! Cheers
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