Bodywork

Boot side panels

Next boot related project are the side panels. These I’m making out of aluminium, line with carpet and some rubber trim to seal them against the tub.

Passenger side panel is simpler, just a big triangle.

On the driver side there is the tank filler and the vent valve in the way. Here the first piece goes in for a test fit. This used to be one of the old small side panels from outside the boot area which is why there is glue all over it.

After a load of foam board templating I created this piece of aluminium. The black lines show where it needs bends.

After bending this comes a very solid piece.

Test fitting the bent piece.

This is the filler tube for the tank and the tank vent that this piece fits around.

The rest of the side panel is held on with rivnuts and bolts with cup washers. There’s not much room so these need to go in as two pieces and then joined.

To better secure the passenger side I created a 90º piece of aluminium and riveted it on. This means the back of the panel sits on the boot floor. In hindsight it would have been cleaner to add this as part of the main part, but the join will be hidden.

Ran into another clearance issue on the driver side – the spare wheel tub gets in they way.

To fix that I added a curve into the metal here – gives it about 1cm clearance from the spare wheel area of the tub.

Parts removed ready for carpet.

Driver side covered

Impact glue going on to the passenger side.

On the back of both side have rubber to reduce the chance of vibration and some JDM chopped tape. The sides are held in with a bolt into a rivnut. The rivnuts are mounted into the rear suspension towers.

The finished side panels with rubber edging added to close the gap to the tub. There are some very small wood screws holding the complex part into the boot floor. This is mostly to top that end wandering around.

On the passenger side the carpet is left long which better hides the edge.

Only one panel left to go for the rear. No more loosing small things forever out the back of the car!

Bodywork

Harness Holes Be Gone

I made some blanking plates to cover holes no longer needed in the tub.

These are aluminium, painted black then lined with rubber and held on with rivnuts, cup washers and bolts. Was thinking of leaving them shiny but ended up going for the subtle look.

This is the prototype with multiple bends, final two are new fresh ones with each bend only done once.

Final piece cut and bent, test fitting. A bit of blue tape to avoid scratching the paint.

Cleaned and painted

Applied a layer of 1mm rubber to the underside, I did this with double sided tape.

Test fitting

To mount these I added a rivnut to each part, M4 sized.

To attach to the car a hole was added in the new boot lid trim.

That cleanly attached these and closes up the gap nicely.

 

The cup washer and bolt are a bit smaller than those that hold the trim in, and they’re also a bit closer to the edge. However the style matches.

Bodywork

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!

Bodywork

Reassembly, paint, lighting, electrics

The rear wings, tub and spare cover are back from http://www.specialisedpaintwork.com/ for some touch up work and removal of all the stone chips on the wings! The wings were starting to look more stone chip hole than paint on the front. To protect the wings this time I purchased some 3M VentureShield from https://www.invisiblepatterns.co.uk/ – I made a pattern using paper first then cut out the 3M stone chip protection film and applied. It took a lot of soapy water and work with the squeegee to get everything stuck down.

After fitting the stone chip protection film, I installed the new 3D printed light covers:

Wiring updated for the new inner LED lights:

Stuck the rear tub back on, this time using A316 stainless ‘A4’ nuts and bolts, these shouldn’t go rusty as easily as the previous 304 stainless ones. Got the nuts and bolts from https://www.westfieldfasteners.co.uk/

Decided to use vinyl wing piping from https://www.woolies-trim.co.uk/ instead of the rubber trim that’s been on there since 2005 (that had started to go solid). The texture on the trim is very nice.

Next it was time to tackle some electrical, this tool from https://www.powerprobe.com/ (via https://www.summitracing.com/) is an invaluable tool for dealing with 12v car electrics. It will tell you if you have a ground, or a positive (and how many volts), plus you can use the switch to send a ground or 12 volts to the item your are connected to. A good way to test relays, bulbs, LED polarity etc.

Reconnected the 4 pin water proof connectors and tied up the excess cables out of the way of the tyres.

These are new two pole Lucas 403 bulb holders and a very cool set of LED lights that output both white and red light spending on which pins you connect up. They cover reverse and fog, which means I can run twin fog / twin reverse lights! The old Lucas 403 holders were starting to look a bit rusty so the new ones were good to get anyway.

Finally, an extra cross over cable is needed to bring the 12v+ fog/reverse to both sides of the car:

Reverse on!

Fog on!

Finally, due to the indicators now being LED they ran in super insane broken bulb mode. As such the flasher relay needed to be swapped out. I had gotten an LED flasher from S-V-C https://www.s-v-c.co.uk/product/led-flasher-relay-12v/ it’s pin out is reversed from the BMW flasher relay and the ground is on a wire from the top. The flasher relay comes with a polarity swapping attachment so it goes right into the same connector as the stock flasher. The ground I’ve attached to the same location as the horn and other steering wheel wiring grounds.

Finally, some assembled shots:

Bodywork

3D Printed light bracket finalised and dust cover for LED centre lights

Part evolution from initial concept to final co-polyester print, shown at the front the traditional bulb clear lens, LED amber indicator and LED ring light.

The final part:

Test fit with traditional bulb holder style clear lens indicator:

New LED centres, these don’t have the big tail and rubber seal out the back so it’s vulnerable to stone impacts and dirt inside the rear arches.

To solve the first/damage issue I’ve modelled up a dust cap, on the right version 1 printed in one part. The rough surface comes from removing supports. Version 2 on the left, printed in two parts, up the other way. That leaves a clean finish on the ourside from the print bed and clean surface without any overhang for the inside.

Version 2 split print in more detail, these parts are glued together using CA / Superglue

Wire clearance

Wire cap in place

The end is shaped so that shrink tube can easily be place over the cables to protect them

Bodywork

3D Printed light brackets Version 2 test

Version 2 on the left, much smaller than the inital version:

Some clearance to fit two next to each other on the Sporster

The part is still more than strong enough for to keep the light in

Test fitting on the wing

LED centre light test fit (yep, rusty screws need changing)

View from the outside

Bodywork

Hella Mix and Match 3D Print Light Brackets

When we first build the Sportster 3D printing wasn’t a thing for home users. This has changed in the last 13 years, so it seem like a good time to make some improvments.

Version one of the rear light brackets where aluminim, work fine don’t look so good:

CAD Designs so far, allows for 3mm body thinkness when mounted. It’ll need a gasket to keep the damp out, also the fibre glass is not a consisten thinkness:

 

Some rendered versions with clear models of the outter ring and inner light:

Now we need to print the first protoype and see how it fits: