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Old 03-07-2010, 12:57 AM   #1
generalee69
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Default New Front Splitter

I've started to dislike the front bumper cover that we were using on the car last year. I like the length of it, but I don't like how it blends (or lack of blend) into the fenders.

I decided to go ahead and attempt to make my own. I got started today making the "sub-frame" which will act as a spacer to drop the splitter down a couple inches from the bottom of the OE front trim.

I went to Home Depot and picked up some hard polystyrene foam 2" x 24" x 96" ($15). I was able to get it traced and rough cut today. Tomorrow we'll get it sanded down. http://insulation.owenscorning.com/h...mular-250.aspx

On the engine side we will use some .040" or .060" aluminum. For the actual splitter, we will 10mm alumalite. Then it'll be attached to the chassis at a few places and the "bumper" via turnbuckles.

Once it is completed, we'll post up some more pics, but here are some teasers.



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Old 03-07-2010, 12:59 AM   #2
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can't wait to see when it's done, i like to see the process, designing, prototyping and building your own aero parts... something i would like to try at some point =)
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Old 03-07-2010, 01:11 AM   #3
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im in the same boat...i need some front end aero and will be fabbing up something for this summer. keep us updated!
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Old 03-07-2010, 11:44 PM   #4
generalee69
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Got the rough cut sanded down, but nothing too exciting to take pictures of.

I did trying playing with the foam to see what will and won't work.

It appears to respond very well to using gorilla glue. I'm going to glue the piece of foam that fills in the gap between the OE front "side splitters".

It also seems to work pretty well to use wood screw with a couple of drops of gorilla glue to seal the screw into the foam.

DON'T try spray paint this stuff though It made it all bubbly and starting eatting the foam.

I've got new front side splitters that I will replace the ones in the above pictures with. Other than that expense I think the whole project will cost $250-$300.
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Old 03-10-2010, 08:23 PM   #5
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Looking good. Keep us up to date.
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Old 03-12-2010, 12:34 PM   #6
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Default Hmmm

Interesting....I am subscribing to see development of this one.
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Old 03-12-2010, 12:41 PM   #7
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Epoxy works well when gluing large pieces of foam together.

Duncan
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Old 03-12-2010, 03:38 PM   #8
generalee69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dunk View Post
Epoxy works well when gluing large pieces of foam together.

Duncan
Thanks for the tip. Just a quick-set 5 minute epoxy? Any type in particular that may melt the foam rather than bond to it?

I'm picking up the alumalite tonight. Should get some more done on it this weekend. My plan is to build the splitter and spacer as a sub-assembly. Then get the car down to the shop so we can put it on the lift. We'll finish the chassis mounting down there.
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Old 03-12-2010, 04:11 PM   #9
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Make sure you mount the alumalite very solidly and support it in as many places as possible. My old alumalite splitter worked pretty well but even with some very solid chassis mounts it would flex a lot at the corners (as seen in track photos, especially under braking).
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Old 03-12-2010, 04:22 PM   #10
generalee69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boost junkie View Post
Make sure you mount the alumalite very solidly and support it in as many places as possible. My old alumalite splitter worked pretty well but even with some very solid chassis mounts it would flex a lot at the corners (as seen in track photos, especially under braking).
Yeah, I've seen a couple of pics with you splitter flexing down.

I may not wrap mine all the way around the front to the wheel well. Or at least very little... maybe only an inch offset from the bumper at the sides.

The other challenge I have given the fabricator is that I want the whole front bumper cover w/ the splitte to be removable only using a flat head screw driver.

One of my big goals this year is making life at the track easier. Setup, tear down, etc.
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Old 03-12-2010, 05:39 PM   #11
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Most race cars are setup to remove the bumper and leave the splitter in place. that way the splitter is part of the chassis.
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Old 03-13-2010, 01:10 AM   #12
generalee69
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Default

I decided to use a piece of plywood to use a mock up before I cut the alumalite.

What do you guys think about the profile I have mocked up?









I haven't cut out the clearance for the wheels and tires to finish out the under tray. I'll do that tomorrow.


Hey Dan -- What thickness alumalite were you running before? I got a sheet of the 10mm. Man that stuff is rigid! I think I could probably stand on that 4' x 8' sheet.
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Old 03-13-2010, 01:18 AM   #13
generalee69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jid2 View Post
Most race cars are setup to remove the bumper and leave the splitter in place. that way the splitter is part of the chassis.
For sure when you are talking about purpose built pro-team racecars. I wouldn't agree with most amateur racers though.

Regardless, I can't get the car on my trailer with the splitter on (or the spoiler/bumper cover we used last year). So it needs to come off easily with the OE bumper cover.
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Old 03-15-2010, 08:27 PM   #14
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From where did you measure the distance for the front splitter? From the 'mold' you made? From the leading edge of the front bumper? How far out will splitters leading edge be from those points?

I'm used to seeing the edges squared off. Not writing that what you did is wrong because I am by no means an aerodynamic engineer. I'm used to seeing winglets on the edges too so I guess that seems to be missing. I'm basing this solely on what I've see on teh interweb.

Good on you for getting out there and making something. Just watching your progress, because I'm interested in your build, and want to make a front splitter for my own rollerskate.

Examples:



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Old 03-16-2010, 01:47 AM   #15
generalee69
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I decided to wrap it around and taper it at the ends to reduce the possibility of the alumalite deflecting... but the 10mm is so damn strong that I don't think it would have mattered. I'm no aero engineer either But I think what we have now is an improvement over the bumper cover/air dam we were using last year.

I have everything about 90% complete now. I just need to finish the molding and silicone seal all the joints.

I changed my plans a bit. I'm going to permanently fix the undertray to the bottom of the car. The spillter is fixed to the bumper cover. So when the bumper cover is in place the alumalite undertray will line up with splitter. I know this is not the optimal way to work up a splitter/undertray... but the compromise is being able to more easily and quickly attach the bumper cover/splitter at the track.

The undertray will be spaced down so that it is flush with the bottom of the splitter. There will still be a little mismatch I imagine.













oh yeah, to answer your questions.

I traced the bottom edge of the foam (matches the bottom profile of the bumper cover) and then shifted the whole profile 5.25". That gives me almost exactly 4" from the vertical view of the bumper leading edge (which is an ITE spec). The class we run in mostly allows up to 6", but if I ever want to race an SCCA race I wanted to be legal for ITE still.

That 5.25" at the front tapers to about an inch on the sides of the car.
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Old 03-16-2010, 04:25 AM   #16
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I wonder if it would have been easier to have something like a v-limited lip on the bumper skin first. Then you would have the alumalite attached to the chassis of the car with brackets and the bumper skin along with the v-limited lip will rest on the splitter while attached to the car.

Im thinking of doing it this way with my car... with the possibility of adding some turn buckles attached to my aps "bumper beam" for my fmic.
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Old 03-16-2010, 04:06 PM   #17
generalee69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alcoolaid View Post
I wonder if it would have been easier to have something like a v-limited lip on the bumper skin first. Then you would have the alumalite attached to the chassis of the car with brackets and the bumper skin along with the v-limited lip will rest on the splitter while attached to the car.

Im thinking of doing it this way with my car... with the possibility of adding some turn buckles attached to my aps "bumper beam" for my fmic.
I thought about finding a v-limited lip as a base. I decided against it for a couple of reasons.

1) The cost and time spent on the foam combined was less than the $200 for the v-limited lip. I still needed to come up with the mounting solution and it wouldn't be any less expensive with the v-limited

2) The v-limited lips I have seen (and the one I used to own) was thicker at the back towards the wheel well than at the very front. The bottom of the bumper cover is already at a slight angle so the v-limited would exagerate that problem without modifying it. I wouldn't be suprised that if you hung a splitter off a v-limited lip that you would have say 6" of ground clearance at the very front and only 4.5" - 5" at the wheel well.
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Old 03-16-2010, 04:12 PM   #18
generalee69
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This shot may look a little odd, so I added a red line to show how I am planing to trim the OE "side splitter" panel.
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Old 03-23-2010, 02:52 PM   #19
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Lee, any updates?
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Old 03-23-2010, 03:43 PM   #20
generalee69
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Oops. I posted over on the thread I started in the NWIC section. Forgot to update this one as well.

I'm pretty close to finishing up. Got the molding on. The car's down at the shop right now, and we'll get the chassis mounting finished up tonight.

Here's a couple more pictures









Then a couple from last year, so you can see what we changed from.







The next step will be canards and "winglets" for the splitter, if we need more front down force. We'll play with what we've got right now to see how balanced the car feels. Then figure out if we need aero or suspension changes.
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Old 03-23-2010, 08:28 PM   #21
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Looks good! Bringing the car out on Saturday? Can't wait to see it up close!
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Old 03-24-2010, 01:20 AM   #22
generalee69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alcoolaid View Post
Looks good! Bringing the car out on Saturday? Can't wait to see it up close!
Yep. See ya out there!
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Old 03-24-2010, 09:14 AM   #23
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Looks great, nice work! I can tell you though that you will definitely need support rods going to the leading edge of the splitter, with the amount of downforce it can generate the alumalite will flex.
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Old 03-24-2010, 04:01 PM   #24
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Thanks, Dan.

We got the supports mostly finished last night. I need to do some quick painting and bolt a couple of pieces together... the the light at the end of the tunnel is getting bright.
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Old 03-27-2010, 10:14 AM   #25
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subscribing. I'm working on one now and having trouble getting the splitter flat. I thought getting a lip would flatten out my bumper, but it didn't. Putting some of that foam on might do the trick. I'm worried about heat vs the foam though. Even with the aluminum on the header side. Maybe just run the foam around the edge of the bumped instead of having it in the center also?
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