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August 1-12, 2000 - Not much progress during this period. I spent the last two weekends in July on a trip to Japan. I went to the Brickyard 400 in Indy the first weekend of August, and to Lansing Michigan the second weekend.
With some help from Steve Shaffer, I did begin the bodywork in a serious fashion. As recommend by many folks on the Cobraforum, as well as Steve, I am using West System Epoxy to fill the seams and pinholes in the fiberglass. I am leaving the body up high on the high-rise body buck until I finish the lower body panels.
August 18-20, 2000 - Continued working or the body to prepare it for paint. Once the lower seam sections were ready, I took the extensions out and lowered the body buck to where I can reach the entire body to work on it. I am using DuPont Epoxy Primer to prevent any future shrinkage. As you can see from the pictures, I was able to get all of the seams ground down, and the first coat of West System Epoxy applied.
August 25-27, 2000 - Many of the loose ends are beginning to come together. A 'black box' of electronics designed and build by Ed Kamptner especially to improve the safety and effectiveness of the FFR electrical system was delivered. As soon as I get the custom turn signal setup from Russ Thompson, I should have all I need to complete the dash and electrical stuff. (Note: When I did the wiring in October, I did not end up using the box. In my case, I found it easier to do the wiring without it, and putting individual relays wherever they were needed.)
I finished up with the body seams. This required SEVERAL layers of the West System Epoxy. While I was at it, I filled-in the factory holes for the external trunk lid hinges, as I plan on going with custom hidden hinges like the ones Steve Shaffer used on FFR #1825K. While sanding the seams, I cut through the gelcoat adjacent to the seams. This opened up the raw fiberglass, and the millions of pinholes that goes along with that. Most of these were not really visible until after the first coat of primer. After consulting with my friends on the Cobraforum, I filled the pinholes with the DuPont Final Fil. The body is now ready for another coat of primer before block sanding. I also used the West System Epoxy to bond the hood hinge frame to the hood.
Finally, I drilled holes and began fitting the trunk area aluminum to the frame. Once the trunk aluminum is in place, I will be able to fit the body onto the frame to make all fitting adjustments prior to painting.
August 31, 2000 - Steve Shaffer stopped by with his welder and welded in extra bracing to the trunk area of the frame to add support for the hidden hinges.
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