Finally…. We Have Mesh!

These damn trunk vents seem to be taking forever and sucking up hours of sanding, filing and shaping into something that I’m finally satisfied with.

Over the last two afternoons I believe that I now have them to a state where I can look at them and be satisfied.  Could they be more perfect?  Sure they could.  If I wanted to spend another 20+ hours or so on them I could get them looking exactly like the ones on the hero car.

But I think they look pretty darn good and I would rather spend that time finishing up a few other items on the car.

Getting mesh into these vents has proved to be one of the more difficult tasks on the car so far.  One of the reasons it has been so difficult is that I had already added bracing to the trunk lid so that it would shape better for the curvature of the car and serve as mounting points for the hinges.

If I was going to place a flat sheet of mesh under all of these vents (like on the hero car) I was going to have to cut open some room to slide the mesh under the support brace.

This relief area took forever to get opened to a size where I could slide in some steel and have it tuck under the support brace, over the trunk hinge nut/bolt and then sit flat at the top of the vent.

This of course made for more work.  If you remember from my fabrication work on the vents, I left the top two vents incomplete because I couldn’t access them.  Well now I had access and I needed to extend their base 1/2″ inch to match the other vents.  Otherwise there would be a big gap at the bottom of the top vent.

This was the usual process of laying down a backing piece of bristol board and also covering everything up in aluminium foil to ensure that I didn’t get resin on top of all my hard work.

Before I could mount the mesh behind everything I needed to get everything smooth on the top two vents and also fix up any blemishes on the rest of the vents.

I needed to make sure that I was finished all of the body filler work in this area so that I didn’t have to come back and possibly slop some of it into the vents once they were installed.  It’s nasty trying to clean body filler out of mesh 😦

I then used the same process as the speaker boxes to create a solid backing for the mesh.  This time I picked-up some thinner 22 gauge steel for the backing material so that it was easier to bend into shape.

Before tack welding the two pieces together I gave them a couple coats of primer so that they were sealed and wouldn’t rust.  Then it was just a matter of lining them up with each other and adding a tack weld every couple of inches.

This mesh sandwich was then bent to match the curvature of the trunk lid around the vents and then slid into place.  When I say “slid” I really mean hammered using a block of wood!  It was a really tight fit.

Here are a couple pictures of the final results when looking through the vents.

There’s still a little bit more work to do in order to finish everything.  I’ll need to seal the back of the mesh into the trunk lid so that it’s water tight.  The one sheet of steel is sitting perfectly and I’ll just fiberglass over it.

However the other side will need me to first put a couple of screws in it to hold it down tight before sealing it into the trunk lid.

It’s actually pretty amazing to feel how much weight those two mesh inserts added to the trunk lid!  It’s not super heavy, but it definitely weighs a lot more than it did before.

I must say that it feels good to be almost finished with these damn trunk vents 🙂

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