7-7-11; Body On, Hood Installation

Started by preliminarily fitting the splash guard panels (or elephant ears). There are some adjustments that needed to be made, particularly to the front ones, as the ducting for the Cobra Earl vents passes through them as well as some harnessing. Better to do these mods now than when the body is on. I also pilot drilled them to 1/8″. I plan to rivnut them in when the time comes, but this will help with fit up when the body is on.

Forgot to post this the other day - here are the tail lights installed.











Initial fit up of the splash guards. Gonna rivnut them when the time comes...













Having finished the lights, I buttoned everything up in preparation for body installation. I tried looking for some butcher’s paper to put on top of the bulb seal to help with the adjusting of the fiberglass shell, but I couldnt find any at Staples or at Home Depot, so I tried putting butcher’s wax on the bulb seal, which didnt really do anything (it got absorbed before it could be of any use). So, on with the body, wax or not. I used my quick release bolts in the rear (so the tank NEVER has to get dropped anymore) and the quick-jacks in the front that came with the kit.

Body on












Following the order of things in the manual and using the Mark IV site as an embellished guide, I started on the hood. I had already installed the hood hinges a couple sessions ago, so I started by laying the hood in position and sanding about 1/16″ in some areas where the panel was clearly way oversized. Final fitting will occur much later and most likely by the painter.

Initial fit-up of the hood.










Next, I loosely connected the hinge to the attachment brackets to see how it all came together. So far, so good. I then used duct tape to secure it in position while I went underneath and tightened the bolts that hold the hinge to the chassis. The pneumatic supports were then installed and I noticed that the front front of the hood was sticking up by about 3/8″ on one side. Hmmmm. Looking underneath, I couldnt spot anything interfering with the proper lay of the hood panel… Trying to get a sense of what was going on by pushing, I noticed that the brackets to which the hinge attaches were coming loose from the hood itself (recall, they are riveted into position using 3/16″ rivets). i was unhappy with the rivets to start, and, looking carefully at the setup of things, it makes much more sense to have this rivnuted in place, if for no other reason than to allow for an EASY removal of the hood later on. I drilled out the rivets and replaced them with #10 rivnuts. Much much better.

Duct tape to hold it in position....










Reaching way the hell up there to tighten it down while hood is in ideal position...













Here is the hinge mechanism...

In the meantime, after juggling as much hardware as I could to get the hood  assembly ‘lower’, I discovered that I had installed the hinge incorrectly. See page 293 and 294 in the plans; they dont tell you this, but the picture clearly shows the hinge brackets set up with the the arm-bracket UNDERNEATH the chassis bracket. Ahhh…. Much much better. This solved the fit problem.








Proper orientation of the brackets.










Much better lay of the hood.










Off with the hood and onto the hood handles. They start by having you find the midline of the aft edge of the hood along the liner rib, and then measuring 12″ on either side where a 5/8″ hole is drilled. I ended up using a unibit for part of this. I took my time with the measuring as this is a complicated surface in which to measure a midline (no good straight reference points). Next, you drill the handles into position after making a minor adjustment to them. Again, I took my time here becasue the orientation of the handle is set by eye-balling it. The hood then goes back onto the body and a reference line is made where the handle points when it is centered and closed. They have you drill two 3/16″ holes 1/4″ on either side of the reference line, 1/4″ aft of the lip in order to be able to mount a piece of aluminum angle so that the handle has something to latch to. I recommend placing these holes 3/8″ or 7/16″ back so that regular nylock screws can be used. At 1/4″, there is no room for a nut on the aluminum. In fact, I had to chamfer the outside of the corner of the angle to fit into the inside radius of the fiberglass just to be able to get it so that the holes would go into the flange of the aluminum angle and not the corner. After drilling the mounting holes (I found 1/4″ to accept the screws better than the 3/16″ they recommend) the corners of the angle then get filed down to make it more aesthetic (although, you cant really see them anyway) and they are installed. I opted to put the rubber bumpers on with the screws.  I then installed the cams for the latches and tried it out; the cams need a little adjusting in order to get them to seat securely. At one point, I had trouble getting one to disengage! In the end, I found that the cam sits really low on the shaft for a comfortable latching mechanism.

Marking centerlines etc










The little tabs that are easily broken off of the latches using a pliers.











5/8" mounting holes drilled










Latches screwed in.










Finding the reference on the body and drilling the angle mounting holes. Remember to drill them further back than I did...













Angle installed with rubber bumpers.










Cams installed
























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