Canopy Vents Part 2

Yesterday I was able to finish up the metal fabrication of the passenger side canopy vent, so today I was ready to start the fiberglass work of embedding them in the body shell.

This work started off by first grinding down some steel tabs to get the right clearance for the fiberglass and also drilling out some holes so that I can get a socket onto the bottom of the bolts which are hard to reach.

I needed to figure out a way to hold the previously cut out piece of fiberglass in-place at the right depth so that I could fiberglass it back into the body shell.

I managed to find some plywood that was pretty much the same thickness as the vent material so I used it to make some little braces that I could clamp down.  These would ensure that the fiberglass was recessed just the right amount.

Once these were held in-place on both sides I mixed up some short strand fiberglass which I forced down the gap between the body shell and the bottom cut-out.  This forced a bunch of the goop down in to create a solid piece of fiberglass.

The routine was filling a bunch of the area with the short-strand, let it cure so that I could remove the clamps/forms and then fill in the rest of the gaps.  Once everything was sanded down with 40 grit it looked like the pictures below.

I did a quick test fit of the driver’s side vents just to see where I needed to do some final trimming/filling.  I did have to file down some areas to get the vent to fit and I’ll also have to do a bit of work to fill in some other areas to get everything to look nice and tight.

At this point I had to go and pick up my daughter from school.  Usually I continue to work after I get back home, but I tweaked my back while lifting the canopy back onto the car.

I had felt a small twinge in my back all morning but holy mother of Mary this canopy lifting caused some severe pain.  I think I pinched or tweaked a nerve in one of my back muscles.  I’m hoping by morning it isn’t hurting as bad 😦

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