Seven is a sticky mess

We have a date set for a professional to visit the IMW workshop in mid-April and teach us how to pull a mold off of Seven. This means the month of March will be a flurry of activity, getting the body ready.

Seven’s “skin” has always been rough. The team was behind schedule to meet the X-Prize Shakedown date so there were bigger concerns than a smooth fit and finish. I put body filler where I could, smoothing deep seams in the fiberglass on foam body, and constantly having to move so that the rest of the team could address things like electronics and windows. But it wasn’t enough.

Now the focus is purely on how she looks. We’re getting the body as symmetrical and smooth as possible. The sculpted foam on the fenders was sealed with a candy coating of epoxy resin and two kinds of epoxy compound were used as body filler. Unfortunately, that still didn’t lend enough strength to the foam to protect it from an accidental knee leaned against it, or a slip of the sander.

Kevin added a fiberglass mesh to the rear fenders, which are now rock-hard. I’ve covered that with an epoxy resin faring compound filler. I love how that compound is pliable for a long time – it made it easy to cover large areas. Unfortunately, it’s also taking forever to dry.

The top and sides of the doors have ripples which I am in the process of smoothing with a thin polyester body filler. Luckily that stuff dries relatively quickly. There will be several coats of filler of different weights going onto the body this month, and waiting a day in between for it to dry before being sanded isn’t really feasable.

But right now, Seven is one sticky, multicolored mess.

Other updates:

The new hinge structure that Kevin, Nick and George worked on has been scrapped. Nick has been working on plan B today, along with sealing the exposed foam in the top middle of the car with fiberglass and epoxy.

The foam around the headlights is just about right. I think Kevin can stop fussing with it (soon).

And a new one speed transmission (within the housing of the Geo Metro transmission) is being custom made for 7. I believe Kevin is ordering extras from the machinist just in case he manages to break it. But more on the transmission later when I have more details.

All I know right now is that I’m tired, sore, and have a 3 inch lock of hair permanently encased in epoxy resin.

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