Matt Powers 2012 Formula D ride Part 3

Matt Powers 2012 Formula D ride Part 3

By Mike Kojima

When we last left off, Matt's crew chief Costa Gialamas had just begun the heavy fabrication and had just about finished the cage.  The team's funding had come in quite late from title sponsors and with a late start there were only six weeks to finish the car!

With a mad rush, there are a few minor skips where we could not come in in time to document every part of the process but we did our best so you can see most of what goes into the build of a top drift car.

 

Read Part One Here!

Read Part Two Here!

 

To make clearance for big tires, Costa cut away the sheetmetal in the wheelwell area to the limit of the Formula D rules.  The trunk floor was also cut away and the frame rails trimmed back to the point where the rear suspension crossmemeber bolts to the chassis.  We missed the pictures of the trunk floor cut outs but we have a few pics of the semi completed parts we will show a bit later.
Costa cut and roll formed this sheetmetal piece to make the new larger wheelwell.  He bead rolled the part to give it some stiffness.  With a larger wheelwell, the car can be run at a low ride height with plenty of wheel travel without bottoming in the wheelwell.
Costa tack welds the metal into the wheelwell then places the overfender in position to trim the outer edge to match the overfender.
Here are what the tack welds look like from the outside.
Once everything is trimmed into shape, Costa TIG welds the wheelwell inner panel in place.  It gives the rest of the remaining sheetmetal structural strength once its been fully welded.

 

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