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Thread: Let's start with the doors

  1. #1
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    Let's start with the doors

    Hi everyone.
    I've been wanting to do a 355 kit (spyder) for several years and am finally ready to get started.* I want to focus on is making it as real as possible - utilizing Ferrari parts, composite parts pulled off OEM, or something so close that even I won't notice the difference.

    With all that said...
    Let me know what you guys think about the following:
    1. What's the difference between the kit doors and OEM skins?* I know the Fiero doors are too tall, but what about length?
    2. What's the difference between the front fenders on most of these kits and real Ferrari?
    3. Can hoods very close to OEM can be used as long as the windshield is replaced (and set to proper angle)?
    4. OEM or direct replacement front bumpers can be used?
    5. OEM or direct replacement rocker panels can be used?

    About the doors, I know I've read that the Fiero doors are too tall (is that why some of these kits look so fat in the midsection?), but I'm pretty sure I've heard that they are too long (or short?), as well.* If that's the case, has anyone tried to shorten/lengthen the doors and cab to match Ferrari specs?* Of course doing so would require compensating in the length of the stretch to maintain the correct wheelbase.* Does anyone sell exact replica door skins?

    By the way, I'm in the Pittsburg, PA area and would really like meeting/talking to/comparing notes with anyone in my general neck of the woods, especially someone that has built, or is currently building a 355.

    Sam

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Aug 2003
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    Re: Let's start with the doors

    do a search for the AD kit on the site, you'll be amazed at how acturate it really is. Parts off the OEM parts.. how close can it get? ;D what part of Pit PA are you from? I'll be in your area this wed 27th, for a week..

    David
    Just smart enough to be very Dangerous

  3. #3
    Junior Member
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    Re: Let's start with the doors

    A lot of people on this forum are very supportive of the AD kit, but I've read that they can be hard to get a hold of.* Is this true?* I would imagine there are other variables that influence its availability such as location, who you know, time of year, luck, etc...

    Does the AD kit require a stretch?* From what I've seen, most non-stretch models seem to mimic the spirit or feel of the 355 much better than many of the atrocious stretched versions.* However, in my opinion, the non-stretched kit can never be as accurate as a stretched kit just because it doesn't have the same dimensions as the original.

    I live in Greensburg, but work in Jefferson Hills (south of Pitt) and would like to meet you if it's convenient.

    By the way, does any one have any input on the "doors" question?* Any insight would be greatly appreciated.

    Sam

  4. #4
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    Re: Let's start with the doors

    Pick a day from the April 27th-May 4th I'll be with in miles of you in greensburg. I can explain what ever you need. Do you have a donor yet? PM me your contact info.

    David
    Just smart enough to be very Dangerous

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    243

    Re: Let's start with the doors

    John Watson the guy who makes the AD kits can get backed up and it sometimes takes a little while longer to get his kits but well worth it. You can get a strech or non strech version of the AD kit. The non strech version looks very close to the orginal, the length is exactly the same just on the strech version the rear wheel is 2- 3" or so back. Also about the doors, do a search for funnywheels this is Dave Newmans car and he has incorperated factory ferrari doors, headlights, latchs, the works. His handle here is Funnywheels and just happens to be the name of his car. None the less, look at some older posts from dave and you can see Dave's car and what exactly he had to do to make everything work. The reason AD is so supported here because it is the best kit hand down with John Watson being someone that has never screwed one person over, something very few can sa in this industry. So if you want the best kit,best quality, and best guy backing the car, wait the extra time and get yourself an AD. You will thank yourself many times over.

  6. #6
    Moderator FunnyWheels's Avatar
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    Re: Let's start with the doors

    Hi everyone.
    I've been wanting to do a 355 kit (spyder) for several years and am finally ready to get started. I want to focus on is making it as real as possible - utilizing Ferrari parts, composite parts pulled off OEM, or something so close that even I won't notice the difference.

    With all that said...
    Let me know what you guys think about the following:

    1. What's the difference between the kit doors and OEM skins?

    Most kit doors are one piece and slip onto the Fiero door frame (the door scoop area is too small and too tall on most kits like a Mirage). Real 355 Doors are two parts and have a large scoop directing air into the rear quarter panel.

    I know the Fiero doors are too tall, but what about length?

    The length is fine if you use the 355 lower portion of the door and put a lip on the AD top section of ĺ inch to cover the door jamb.

    2. What's the difference between the front fenders on most of these kits and real Ferrari?

    John pulled molds off of a real 355 fender and most of it will fit the real car. The differences are, John added a Fiero fender flap to bolt it to the Fiero in the same mounting points as the Fiero fender. The lower dog leg of the Ferrari fender is attached to the fender on the kit part and a separate piece on the 355.

    3. Can hoods very close to OEM can be used as long as the windshield is replaced (and set to proper angle)?

    John makes a replacement hoods that is used on a 355 Challenge car. So it is an exact copy of the OEM hood. You need to bond it to a Fiero inner hood panel to get it to fit the car. In addition, the base of the windshield will need to be extended 8.5 inches to accept a custom windshield. The wipers and hood releases will also need to be relocated. Trevor Price makes the windshields (Australia). John Watson has them available for his kits wit the pan to accomplish the task.

    4. OEM or direct replacement front bumpers can be used? Either can be used. John makes OEM replacement bumpers that fit the 355 Challenge cars. All of the OEM 355 hardware fits properly to the front bumper.

    5. OEM or direct replacement rocker panels can be used?

    I used a set of Johnís OEM Challenge rockers on my car. Either rocker will fit properly with much effort. John supplies a set with his kit.

    About the doors, I know I've read that the Fiero doors are too tall (is that why some of these kits look so fat in the midsection?), but I'm pretty sure I've heard that they are too long (or short?), as well. If that's the case, has anyone tried to shorten/lengthen the doors and cab to match Ferrari specs? Of course doing so would require compensating in the length of the stretch to maintain the correct wheelbase.

    I have a John Watson body kit and OEM parts on my car FunnyWheels. You can read about all of the build process on this site. The OEM Ferrari doors open differently than a Fiero. The Fiero door can be made to work by sectioning the door 2 inches near the bottom of the door. I did it with my car. I use an OEM 355 lower door and the top from an AD kit. I modified the top of the AD part on the rear toward the rear quarter panel by adding a ĺ inch lip to the door to match it to the OEM part. The results are remarkable.

    Does anyone sell exact replica door skins?

    Yes, John Watson


    By the way, I'm in the Pittsburgh, PA area and would really like meeting/talking to/comparing notes with anyone in my general neck of the woods, especially someone that has built, or is currently building a 355.

    Sam

    Sorry Sam, I am from Pittsburgh, PA but now live in Tampa, Florida.

    Send me an email and I will forward some photos to you if you canít find them on the FunnyWheels Build Progress on the site. I posted it all!

    Dave
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    If you're not confused, you're not paying attention.

  7. #7
    Moderator FunnyWheels's Avatar
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    Re: Let's start with the doors

    From the front
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    If you're not confused, you're not paying attention.

  8. #8
    Moderator FunnyWheels's Avatar
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    Re: Let's start with the doors

    Door edge
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  9. #9
    Moderator FunnyWheels's Avatar
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    Re: Let's start with the doors

    The scoop
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    If you're not confused, you're not paying attention.

  10. #10
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    Re: Let's start with the doors

    David,
    Thanks for agreeing to meet and any day is fine for me.* Getting a chance to talk face-to-face with someone knowledgable would really help me develop a good plan for how to approach this project.* My email is lcorean@hotmail.com and my phone # is 724-837-3835.

    I have to say that Funnywheels has got to be the best replica that I've ever seen.* As an engineer used to looking at details on the level of microns, I know that it's the tiny details that make the difference between mediocrity and excellence.* All the the effort to make the details as accurate as possible have really come together to make a truly remarkable car.

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