Archive for May, 2009

Wheels

Restoring and Building | Posted by admin May 22nd, 2009

My vision was for the car to have modern looking wheels with 19″ rims and thin tires similiar to a Corvette. A friend has a great set of rims and tires he was willing to sell me that would be perfect. But I quickly ran into problems. Though they were 5 bolt, the bolt pattern was wrong. The Corvair has a 5 bolt 4.75″ pattern and even though these had come off a Pontiac, they were a 410mm. Further checking, and learning turned up that the Corvair suspension is designed for a 4.5″ back spacing and 0 offset. Most cool new rims are 7.5″ back spacing and a 55mm offset. (not sure why offset always seems to be specified in metric and backspacing in inches).

I have looked at wheels that would fit this backspacing and most look vintage. I really would like the wheels to look more modern. They do make adapters but I have heard mixed advice on using these. Though my friends Porsche came from the factory with spacers already installed so they can’t be all bad. But they do have to be machined right.

The Trunk

Restoring and Building | Posted by admin May 22nd, 2009

I needed a good dry place to put all of the high voltage components. This includes the Zilla controller, the main contactors, the DC to DC converter, and the charger. The most logical place was in the rear of the car. There isn’t a trunk but there was a nice area just behind the rear suspension that was empty. I decided I would fiberglass in this area with and make a hatch to access it. It would be water tight and away from any road dirt. As an added bonus if done right I might even have enough space to store a small bag or brief case.

The project started by cutting out the hatch with a dremel reinforced cutting wheel being very carefull to make clean straight lines. This was going to be very visible so it needed to be clean looking.

Foam was glued to the inside of the opening to form a lip. Once dried I used a dremel sanding drum to carve out a shape in the lip that would allow for a rubber seal as well as as a trough to carry away any water that came in. This was then fiberglassed.

The floor of the trunk was formed with foam and fiberglassed as well.

The arm rests

Restoring and Building | Posted by admin May 21st, 2009

The valkyrie kit only comes with a flat fiberglass door pannel for the inside of the door. No arm rest or space for any storage or speakers like modern cars. I needed to create an armrest that would serve as a handle to close the door as well as create some sort of pocket to hold my sunglasses or other small articles.

I started with a couple of peices of foam and my cabinet makers saw and began sculpting. After numerous times in and out of the car to test I had two mirrored rough shapes. One for each side. Using 80 grit sand paper these were further shaped. The final pass was with 120 grit to make them smooth. These then got two layers of fiberglass. Holes were made for the electric window switches and a switch to open the door itself. (The car has shaved doors. There is an emergency handle at the bottom of the seat but the main latch is triggered electronically.)