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D2 A8 Carbon Fiber Trim Production

I had totally forgotten about this core until recently.  Originally, I purchased it for a customer interested in having a carbon fiber set made for his D2 A8L sometime in 2007.  Unfortunately, the customer ended up selling his car and didn’t want the trim anymore, so the core sat unused for a while.  A few months later I decided to take a crack at it without a customer ready to buy.  I got the fiber laid up and the resin applied, but I wasn’t happy with the results so I never finished it.  A few weeks ago while cleaning out my garage I discovered it and decided to try to salvage it.

I spent a few hours carefully grinding and peeling away all of the old carbon fiber.  After I got it all off, the set was ready for a second attempt at being beautiful again.

An overview of the entire set.  There are 12 pieces total, but I’m unsure if this is a complete set or not.  I’ve never done a D2 set before, so I’m not even sure where a lot of the pieces are located in the car.

The two front door pieces are by far the longest pieces I have ever made.

Shifter plate.  No idea if it is an automatic or a manual (I don’t even know if a manual was offered on the D2).

I’m assuming some of these are ashtray covers.

Dash pieces.

Center console pieces.  These two pieces were pretty intense and took a lot of work to get them to where I was happy with how they looked.

I’ll be sure to post more pictures under the D2 tag as I finish up this set.  Still no idea of pricing, but it would probably pretty expensive considering the amount of pieces and the difficulty of some of them.

A3 Carbon Fiber Trim Production

Was able to find someone with an A3 that was willing to be a test mule and was able to make some progress on it this week.  It is only one piece on each door and the shifter plate, so there aren’t that many pieces to wrap.  Hopefully in the future we can find some other pieces in the A3 cockpit to wrap as well.

The fiber went on the pieces pretty easily as the door pieces are very simple.

After a few coats of resin, these pieces are set.  Should only take a few days to cure and I can start to trim them up and sand them smooth.

Fun With Clearcoat

I spent most of the day clearcoating multiple sets of carbon fiber trim and decided to document a bit of the process to share on the blog.

These sets had already been shot with 2 coats of clearcoat last week.  After the clearcoat cures, they get wetsanded and are shot with clearcoat a second time.  This second round of clearcoat really makes oCarbon carbon fiber parts stand out.  It gives the pieces incredible depth and a great looking finish.  You can still see some of the wetsanding grit left on the parts, this is wiped up before the additional clearcoat is shot.

Between every session of clearcoat the spray gun is disassembled and cleaned.  A clean gun is essential to any paint finish.

Back together again.  The pressure regulator at the bottom tip allows for control of the amount of airflow into the gun.  Too much pressure and clearcoat will spray everywhere.   Too little and not enough clearcoat will be shot.

The clearcoat we use is a premium 3 part automotive clearcoat.  It consists of the clearcoat itself, a reducer, and a hardener.  Different types of reducers are added into the clearcoat depending on the temperature and humidity on the day the clear is being sprayed.  On a rainy day, when the temperature is lower and humidity is high, a different type of reducer would be used than on a normal sunny, summer afternoon.  The hardener is obviously added to facilitate the hardening of the clearcoat.

The clearcoat is mixed in a 4:1:1 ratio (clearcoat:reducer:hardener).  If you fill up the clearcoat to the 3rd level, you then fill the reducer up to the next 3rd level, and the hardener up to the final 3rd level.

Before mixing, the clearcoat is very cloudy.  It gets crystal clear after a few swirls with a mixer.

A B6/B7 shifter plate that has been wiped down and is ready for clearcoat.

After two thick coats of clear, the shifter has its traditional gloss look.

B5 hazard trim piece that gets the same treatment.

From time to time, little globs of clearcoat get shot out of the gun and end up on the surface on the part.  This is where wetsanding and polishing come into play.  All of these pieces will have their minor imperfections wetsanded smooth and then polished to a shine.

That’s all for now.  I’ll post more pictures as I finish spraying the rest of these sets and get ready for polishing.

Orange Carbon Kevlar teaser

Few pics of an matte orange carbon kevlar hybrid set I made for a B6 S4 Cabrio owner (notice how its not a gloss finish like you’d normally see with carbon fiber).  I’ll be sure to post up more pics after they get installed.

A5/S5 Carbon Fiber Trim Production

UPS just showed up with a brand new set of A5/S5 set of trim from Europrice.  I’ll be able to start tearing it down over the weekend.  This set will be getting a custom look with a red carbon kevlar hybrid fabric, so it will really stand out.

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