New front wing stays

The front wing stays rusted and broke again, did a temporary fix a few months ago, but finally it’s time to make some new ones which will hopefully be more resiliant to the elements.

Started with two 1 meter 10mm diameter solid rods

A piece of bar to turn into the bracket that will hold the rod on to the front uprights with a U clamp (51mm u clamp)

Bracket cut shown with U clamp.

Test fitted to the uprights

Used a clamp to hold the round bar to the bracket to get a it roughly lined up.

Used a caliper to evenly space the round bar away from the alloy wheels

Held in by hand for a better view of the bracket and round bar

Tack welded the round bar to the bracket

My temporary workshop setup – don’t recommend using a workmate for welding due to the risk of burning wood and fire. Use a metal welding table, which I don’t have in my garage. Grabbed the round bar quite far away from the weld so it was fine. Also used a TIG so no splatter.

I’m still a total amature at welding but these are OK

The main thing is that is holds together well. The angle grinder hides the bad.

One of the most time consuming parts of the build was creating a jig so that all four final bends ended up very similar.

It may only look like two bends, but there are hours of measuing, eyeing up and carefully deciding where the bends need to go.

The rod lines up with the holes on the carbon wings.

Now here’s one of those things that happens all too often on a project – the rods ended up 10mm too high on the first go. This is jig MK2 with the height adjusted. It did mean having to straighten out the rod and rebend it to the right position.

Here’s a test fit of the front of the rod bent into place

The jig is holding the back up.

Left to right the mount positions are little way off on the back, so some creative bending and P clip positioning evens out the rod placement.

The back bent into shape, again two bends took many hours to get to the right position.

Here are the P clips that will mount the wings to the rod

First test fit of the driver side, got some really nice new A4 grade cup washers, bolts and nuts from Westfield Fastners to finish it off.

Test fit on the passenger side. The wing was too close to the tyre so this one needed a bit more fine tuning to get it right.

 

A view from underneath with the wheel off.

There is enough gap between the tyre and the carbon, looks quite close from this angle. If there are problems it is easy to tweak the bends to create more clearance.

Before and after, the before is version 3 of the mounts which also failed eventually.

Ahh shiny parts!

Reader Comments

  1. His have these wing stays turned out? I am looking at new wing stays for my Sportster and was recommended looking at how you have done it. Anything you would change if you did it again?

    1. Hi Chris, I’m happy with them.

      I was recommended to move the wings closer to the tyres over on the MoC forum, but they work and took quite lot of time to make. I think if there was a hole in the side of the wing that the metal rod passed through it would be possible to move the wings out a bit and down quite a bit to get that result. However visually that would have needed wings with a larger radius – aesthetically they work quite well where they are now.

      I do have a bit of damage on one wing where the wing stays broke last time, but I’ve not had much luck finding spares the same as these. Carbon mods stopped making them and chucked out the moulds years ago. A lot of the caterham ones are too small for the size tyre I’m using. The bigger ones are often fibre glass instead of carbon, or rather overpriced carbon. I ditched the Marlin wings very early on after the factory wing stays broke within 50 miles of driving – they were very heavy and hazard if they hit anyone. The carbon ones as a pair weigh a good deal less than the originals. I still have the factory ones somewhere I think.

      The wings wobble a bit, but much less than the old ones. I’d perhaps make a more solid mounting mechanism than a u bolt, but it works and they’ve not moved anywhere. Someone with an engineering background could probably design wing stays with angles that resonate less. I modelled the new ones after the design of the Marlin factory item.

      Thanks, Patrick

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