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Thread: 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO scratch build

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  2. #212
    Senior Member C5GTO's Avatar
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    Post Making GTO headlight fairing rings

    The C5 GTO has been at the paint shop for a few months now so there hasnít been much content for for me to provide an update. Iíve been busy starting my next scratch built car project but thatís going to be the focus of a different build thread.

    I decided to make new rings that secure/seal the headlight fairing covers in place. I had purchased a couple of these about 15 years ago when I started the GTO project but they turned out to be poor fitting and generally not up to the quality level Iím putting into this car. One was .063 in thickness and the other only .050. While the thicker one might hold well enough to keep a seal the thinner one seemed very flimsy. I decided to make the new ones from Al 3003 .090 to keep the flexing to a minimum and for consistent clamping all the way around the ring.

    This is the first time I worked and shaped aluminum sheet this thick. My first impression came from cutting. I was able to cut with aviation snips but it took quite a bit of muscle and I raised a blister on my index finger in the process. As for shaping, it wasnít all that different from shaping .063. Itís stiff enough that bending it over my thigh like I can with .063 didnít work but bending it on the English wheel with a go-kart slick worked great.

    I had cut the nose off my fiberglass GTO body buck just behind the headlights and itís been collecting dust around the garage for a few years now. I was glad I had it as it was very useful for checking shaping progress and to use as a hammer form for fine tuning the edges. After raising the middle and bending on the English wheel, the edges needed to be shrunk. The edge at the back needed the most.



    After a few minutes of shrinking on my TM power hammer, the fit was much better.



    A little bit of fine tuning with a rubber hammer over the fiberglass buck had it fitting good.



    Next I used the Plexiglas fairing lens that had previously been fitted to the headlight opening as a template to mark a cut line. This way I could get an consistent overlap for the ring over the car body. This is where the other rings really fell short. In some areas they barely covered the lens edge and in other areas they mostly overlapped on the body.

    After cutting off the excess material, thereís a consistent 3/8Ē gap around the lens.



    I wanted the ring to have a slight domed shape and I figured this would be easier to do before cutting out the middle. I added the doming by forming the edges over a bit using a flipper over a round edge die from my power hammer. Given the .090 material thickness, Iíll also probably fine tune the domed look by tapering the edges with a file during the finishing/polishing stage.

    Now comes the harder part, cutting out the middle. I carefully marked a line ĺĒ from the edge along with little finger shapes to go around the mounting screws.



    I setup my trusty ďbench mountedĒ reciprocating saw for the cut operation. I find it easier to control the inevitable bounce by holding the material in my hands versus the actual saw. Also key is to lubricate the saw blade with WD-40 to minimize its grabbing effect on the aluminum.



    After cutting and about an hourís worth of filing to clean and straighten things up, a nice fairing ring emerges.



    A test fit to the buck shows the ring retained its shape through all the cutting and filing.



    Iím going to hold off on polishing/finishing these rings until I have the chance to test fit on the actual C5 GTO. Iím guessing that some fine tuning of screw holes will likely be necessary. With the new cleanly shaped rings it really accentuates the warping in the fairing lenses. I guess that means these need to be redone as well.
    Joel Heinke
    Be original; don't be scared of being bold!

  3. #213
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    Hi Joel, Just started reading from the beginning, and my first question is how did you shorten the Torque Tube and keep both ends parallel ?? and also the actual Prop Shaft ??? any help appreciated as I will be doing the same on a Maserati 4200 Torque Tube and shaft, Thanks, Regards DM

  4. #214
    Senior Member C5GTO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dinoman View Post
    Hi Joel, Just started reading from the beginning, and my first question is how did you shorten the Torque Tube and keep both ends parallel ?? and also the actual Prop Shaft ??? any help appreciated as I will be doing the same on a Maserati 4200 Torque Tube and shaft, Thanks, Regards DM
    Dinoman: The short answer is that I had a driveshaft shop that had the necessary equipment and skills do it. I believe it was cut and welded on a lathe or maybe a special welding fixture used for fabricating long cylindrical objects. I seem to recall shortening the aluminum drive shaft was much easier for them than the torque tube. The reason being this torque tube is made from an aluminum/ceramic composite/matrix material and the driveshaft is just aluminum. I remember them saying that cutting this torque tube was not easy at all. In addition, I had to find a welding expert that could provide them with the information on proper filler wire, heat/amperage, and speed to weld it since they had not welded on this material before. Aluminum matrix driveshafts are a lot more common now so there's probably more places that have experience with them these days.

    I could give you the name of the shop that did the work but I know the guy who did the work has since passed away. I'm guessing that shop may not have done another one since. My advice is to figure out if you're dealing with an aluminum alloy or an aluminum composite material. If just aluminum, then it should be easier for you to get it shortened.

    Good luck,
    Joel Heinke
    Be original; don't be scared of being bold!

  5. #215
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    Quote Originally Posted by C5GTO View Post
    Dinoman: The short answer is that I had a driveshaft shop that had the necessary equipment and skills do it. I believe it was cut and welded on a lathe or maybe a special welding fixture used for fabricating long cylindrical objects. I seem to recall shortening the aluminum drive shaft was much easier for them than the torque tube. The reason being this torque tube is made from an aluminum/ceramic composite/matrix material and the driveshaft is just aluminum. I remember them saying that cutting this torque tube was not easy at all. In addition, I had to find a welding expert that could provide them with the information on proper filler wire, heat/amperage, and speed to weld it since they had not welded on this material before. Aluminum matrix driveshafts are a lot more common now so there's probably more places that have experience with them these days.

    I could give you the name of the shop that did the work but I know the guy who did the work has since passed away. I'm guessing that shop may not have done another one since. My advice is to figure out if you're dealing with an aluminum alloy or an aluminum composite material. If just aluminum, then it should be easier for you to get it shortened.

    Good luck,

    Hi Joel, Thanks, My torquetube is steel with forged and welded on ends, and actual Prop Shaft is a narrow solid steel bar with splines on each end. my other question is have you any info on the GTO handbrake lever, looking and lots of pics online it looks like the main handle is in two pieces one the rear one could be main tube and the one at the front the actual rod to move the pawl on the ratchet, if you have any pics or advice it will be much appreciated, cant wait to see yours back from the paintshop, I have just read your piece on making the headlight cover alu rings very nice as I was wondering how I was going to make mine so again thanks for all your info, Regards DM PS I am in the uk.
    Last edited by Dinoman; 06-08-2018 at 10:36 AM.

  6. #216
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    Hi Joel, If your air hammer can shrink and stretch as you say I must make one simlar to yours so can you do me a list of the bits I need to buy from TMtech Thanks Regards DM

  7. #217
    Senior Member C5GTO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dinoman View Post
    Hi Joel, If your air hammer can shrink and stretch as you say I must make one simlar to yours so can you do me a list of the bits I need to buy from TMtech Thanks Regards DM
    My TM Tech style air power hammer is my goto machine for metal shaping. It does a fantastic job and does so without scaring the metal (if used right). Kent White has posted several videos on YouTube showing basic and advanced shaping operations on this machine. You'll probably want to take a look at those if you haven't seen the machine in operation before.

    If you want to build the frame yourself, I'd suggest you get the "Build your own" parts kit: https://www.tinmantech.com/products/...lans-parts.php In addition to this you'll need at least 1 air motor and appropriate dies for the shaping operations you intend. I have motors 1, 2, and 3 and a complete die set. I use motor 2 the most (all shaping operations), motor 1 for planishing, and motor 3 hardly at all as all my shaping has been with aluminum. I use basic shrinking and stretching dies the most and some dies in the "complete set" I have yet to use. I do like the "wobble dies" for planishing and this die set is separate from the "complete set".

    There's pictures of my power hammer build here along with a plan for how I did the frame: http://www.allmetalshaping.com/album.php?albumid=945

    It will take you a decent amount of time to build the frame. Motor/die alignment is critical so you'll need to ensure a decent amount of precision during the frame fabrication. If you're not confident in machine fabrication, you might just want to buy the frame from Kent as well. His entry level frame doesn't add that much too the cost for this machine.
    Joel Heinke
    Be original; don't be scared of being bold!

  8. #218
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    Hi Joel, thanks for your very informative reply, I have register on the Metal Shaping site which also looks very interesting, looking at the two Fabricated frames what is the reason for the offset one as surely the straight one would be stronger ?? so again thanks, Regards DM

  9. #219
    Senior Member C5GTO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dinoman View Post
    Hi Joel, thanks for your very informative reply, I have register on the Metal Shaping site which also looks very interesting, looking at the two Fabricated frames what is the reason for the offset one as surely the straight one would be stronger ?? so again thanks, Regards DM
    The offset/angled lower post lets you work already curved metal, that is where the curve locates metal that would hit the straight post. I actually use the angled lower post almost all the time. It's plenty strong.
    Joel Heinke
    Be original; don't be scared of being bold!

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