Before the summer holidays I received some 3D printed parts I designed to create the 2009 intake system of the F430 GT2 engine, together with a set of rear tail-lights (I ruined 2 of the original ones while disassembling) and the aerodynamic box placed on the front trunck:
Then I started working on the wheels and suspension compartment. First of all, since the trans-kit rims weren't predisposed to be mounted on the orignal Elite hubs, I cut the semiaxis from the original rims, sanded down the resin semiaxis and finally glued the Elite semiaxis on the resin rims. In this way I'll be able to use the original hubs, and also the original brake discs which are directly linked to the rims via the exagonal structure at the base of the semiaxis, making them able to rotate together with the wheels. Here is how they turned out (in the lower right rim I didn't cut completely the original axis when I made the picture, now is like the other ones):
In order to make room for the aerobox in the front compartment, I sanded down some existent structures and cylinders on the floor:
One of the main characteristics of this project from the day I decided to make it was to have working suspensions, so for this scope I bought a set of 4 dampers from Autoart Germany (the great Steffy made the miracle to found 4 from the Zonda R, thanks to her), so I started modeling the lower and upper arms for both the front and rear suspensions. Both of them are thinked to be completely functional, with also working damper mounted on the lower arm and on the chassis, like the real car. Using a steel 0.1mm plate from an old disassembled notebook I started modeling the brackets for the dampers and this is what I created:
The AutoArt dampers have a very small hole for the screws (I measured 0.8mm, with one of my Dremel drilling tools). Fortunately I have such a small tool to make the same hole on the brackets, but not such small screws... again fortunately I noticed a staple can work very well for this purpose. Here is the rest of the brackets made (a real pain in the axx
A comparison with a 2 Euro coin, just to help you understanding their dimensions:
After that I started modeling the lower and upper arms for the front suspension, using 2 pieces of styrene glued together, for a final thickness of 2mm, enough to have the right stiffness. The bushings at the fixation points are made with styrene tubes, 2.5mm diameter, again with 0.8mm hole for the staple. In the picture below the lower arms in their raw shape, waiting for a bit of putty and sanding to make them a bit nicer:
Again I had to make also brackets for them, 16 in this case, which you can see in the following picture, also in comparison with the 2 Euro coin:
Now it's time to start with the rear suspensions. The rear hubs were originally fixed to the wheel arch rear wall, via the 2 pins you can see in the following picture, but now they will be fixed to the upper and lower arms, so I made 2 holes on them and added to pins which will be the connection with both the rear arms.
Finally I modeled the final part of the rear floor I cut previously, with an integrated slide, adding also a small reinforcement on the upper side, to avoid ruptures due to a weak bonding:
That's all for now, more to come in the next days... now all is almost ready for the painting phase!
New updates, one of the last for this period, since I'll be away for work for a while in the next weeks.
I primed (2 coats) all the body parts, the rims, part of the suspension arms and many other parts and here is the result. Painting was one of the stages of which I had more fear, because I had never done before, but fortunately was easier than I could think.
After this step, I was able to notice some little imperfections on the body and to fix applying putty and then sanding.
So I was very curious to check if the suspension/wheels system I created was actually working well and rapidly made a mock-up test:
I had to sand the wheel hub a lot to make room for the damper bracket on the suspension lower arm, but it seems to work fine now. In the picture you can also see the method I'm using to fix the wheel to the hub. I found some M3 screws sold with relative bolts which suit very well for the scope; using also a small washer allows me to avoid the movement of the wheel in transverse direction. Here is how it looks from the outside (the screw will be cut at the right lenght):
After at least 3 version, I finally found the right arrangement for a scratch made rear frame, in place of the original fake and 2D one. In the pictures below is still very raw and not primed and still miss the hole for the wheel axis, now it looks a bit better. It also carries out the so called "shock towers", where the rear suspensions will be fixed through the wheel arches:
After a day from 2nd coat of primer, I painted the body in Tamiya Italian Red (TS-8) and here is the result after 2 coats. The result on resin parts (both the bumpers and the front hood) is already very glossy and shiny, while on metal parts it's a bit more matt, is it normal???
As you can see I also painted the rims and the brake discs with Tamiya Gloss Aluminium, and also a lot of other parts not showed in the pictures above.
I also started to work on the new engine, starting from the original one, from which I will save just the cylinder banks and part of the simulated gearbox. Using some electric wires, I created new exhaust pipes, respecting the original scheme 4 in 2 in 1 for both the sides, than added an oil tank over the gear box and also a final portion for the gearbox, from an old BBurago Ferrari 550. The shape isn't the same of the real one, unfortunately, but I wasn't able to make it from scratch (too complex) and this is the best I found among my spare parts. Here is a rapid mock-up, with also the silencers still not in the right place:
Here I added part of the 3D printed air system (still unfinished, the airbox should become carbon wrapped):
actually it's freezed due the big amount of work I'm having lately for customers... but not dead absolutely. The F430 is still on my desk and I look at it with love every day, hoping to find the needed time to complete it!