Build: Sewing an Engine Bay

After I finished welding the bay, the garage had a niiiiice fog.

It feels good to be back in the garage doing work. I have missed it and the sense of accomplishment. This time I have someone else’s dreams in my hands so it means even more. Get Excited, Get, Get Excited!

It has been a slow start on the new build due in part to the holidays and having to assemble then mount the bender and notcher. I had to order in the 1.5-0.095 wall tubing so cage work will commence Tuesday – 1/4/11.

*It is 1/5/11 and tubing still isn’t here! It must have gotten bumped from the first shipment as it was supposed to be here Wednesday at the latest. I called Tuesday and was told it would be Thursday at the earliest and Friday at the latest. At least I know for next time, they don’t stock 0.095 wall and I’ll need to order it sooner.

JD2 Model 32 - This things a beast and works so so good!

JD2 MASTER NOTCHER - Master says it all. This things gonna get a healthy work out.

So in between those two things, I did what I could to prep the interior for the cage by removing part of the rear bulk head, removed rear seat back and rear center brackets, cut out rust behind driver’s seat then welded in fresh metal.

It may look a little weird. It will be getting some plate welded across the opening and top which will create the fuel cell containment.

Here you get an idea of what I am planning.

This hole was dangerous and flimsy...I fell in while working on the rear bulkhead.

Rust cut out and patched. Nothing special, its a TRACK car. It will get a little grinding and putty to smooth it a bit.

Rear hump bracket...aka Junk Piece 1.

And a good bye to you!

Both of these....


Then, I moved to the engine bay. I removed the remaining engine bay bits, cleaned the engine bay seams, laid out weld spacing on the seams, and welded my heart out. It all went really good. A super clean seam is a happy seam.

Wire wheeled clean seams.

2 seconds after finishing welding on day 1...I really do like my lungs, I swear. smoke haze.

I really enjoy my alternating pretty.

Firewall lip welds

EXTREME close-up!

Backside lower radiator support

Front of lower rad support

Full bay shot

The weakest point of an S chassis. Gonna weld some flat bar in a triangle and brace it up real nice.

I’ll be adding further bracing just in front of the door. It is such a weak area on S13 and S14 chassis’. Being such an easy fix, why not? I may talk like it is my car but that’s because the owner gave me the reigns to do what I think is best. Pretty fun spot to be in!

The last of the seams to weld. YAY!

Laying out the tubs...that rust hole will get swallowed by fresh metal.


Then I took this and made it like...

THIS. Really wish I would have done this to my own car.

I will be welding tabs to the upper support chunk I cut out and then welding nuts to the remaining support. This will make installing and removing the engine insanely easy! The “strength” of the radiator support won’t diminish since all the real strength is in the lower portion of the radiator support that the tension rod braces bolt to.

I leave you with this shot of all the metal that has come out in the form of brackets and such.

Scrap keeps growing. When you don't have things like a/c, back seats, etc going back in you can shave small amounts of weight here and there.

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