Let the Glassing Begin!

After a very long pause in working on this project, I begin again.

Because of various other obligations, I had to suspend working on the Cobra for some time. One obligation was the lack of funds because of my daughter starting College. Also I was involved in a new startup company that took a lot of my time. Excuses aside, we began again with the next phase of the build. All of the panels were installed and I have driven it on the road for a number of months to check all of the workings. All are good so it is time to bond it all together by fiber-glassing the differing sections together. I have selected RAKA Marine materials for this purpose. One reason is that I have used them in the past on my boat restoration project and found them to be of great help and in an economical way! I recommend using their epoxy for all of your glassing needs. They are on the internet at www.raka.com.


I started with their 6 quart kit for $93 and their 3” and 6” fiber “tape”, which is just cloth in a 3 or 6” roll. The Resin mixes 2 to 1 with the hardener. Use the fast for pretty fast setup in warm weather. The slow is fairly slow (48 hours in 40 deg weather as I found out). With shipping and a few other items, it was $140 to have all the materials for glassing the panels.


I raised the front and removed the wheels to gain access to the footbox area that needed sealing. Make sure and cover everything! This can get kind of sloppy.


I assessed the job and the size of the gaps. Some are pretty sizable as you can see. I prepped the areas by sanding with 80 grit paper and some grinding where I was able to get into with a grinder. It appears that the upper part of the firewall will be the greatest challenge.


The rear of the vehicle has some sizable areas also, but they are much more accessable.

As I began, I would coat both the surfaces with the mixed epoxy and then cut strips (3”x 6”) and stick the edges leaving the majority un-wetted. I did this because if the cloth was completely wetted, it was too heavy to adhere to the surfaces and would fall off. (I found this out the messy way!) After the strips setup overnight, (slow hardener) I came back and applied more strips while soaking the first parts completely.


One more word of advice, I began by using the cheap foam brushes and found out that they were not stiff enough to work the epoxy into the glass cloth. I am going to switch to a cheap brush that should help when working the cloth.



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