Shell Mold Work

Today we picked up the first of our new molds for Zephyr from Kreysler and Associates, who have been kind enough to continue their sponsorship of CNC and personnel time to machine our molds. After helping them out by clearing away all of the excess styrofoam, we transported the top and bottom shell back to Richmond, and got busy with a huge sanding session to smooth out any bumps and machine paths left on the mold surface. After months of staring at the Zephyr computer model, it’s extremely exciting to see the body of the car slowly take shape!

Sam standing in a sea of stryofoam
Sam standing in a sea of stryofoam.

The next steps will be to coat the molds with Duratec Styroshield (to protect the styrofoam, which reacts with the sanding primer) and then with Duratec EZ Sanding Primer. This will then be sanded and polished so that we can make female fiberglass molds that are extremely smooth. The final step is then to do the actual carbon fiber layup inside the fiberglass molds. Every bump and mistake will only magnify as we make the fiberglass molds and then our carbon fiber parts, so we are taking extra care to ensure our final parts will be shiny and smooth!

Our sanding party!
Our sanding party!

Last week Kreysler also machined 1/7th-scale molds that we are going to use as a practice for the real deal. Every step we have to do on our actual molds will first be tested on these so that we can iron out any mistakes before working on our full-size parts. The practice molds have all been sanded and are ready to be coated in Duratec. Check out how nice they look!

Small scale Zephyr molds.
Small scale Zephyr molds.


Thank You, Terminal Manufacturing!

Terminal Manufacturing, TIG, welding, CalSol
Thank you Jimmy! CalSol loved the experience

Terminal Manufacturing graciously took some time out of its schedule to teach 11 CalSol members how to do Tungsten-Inert-Gas (TIG) welding on aluminum. A big thanks to Jimmy for being a terrific teacher and allowing each and every one of us to actually get our hands on the machine and weld. His concern over safety really hit home with us and we will be taking every precaution when we weld too.

Since our design involves welding thin wall, aluminum tubing to form the structural chassis, this training could not have come at a better time. We will be using this knowledge to move forward with the construction of Zephyr.

Again, thank you for your support!

TIG welding, welding mask, CalSol
TIG welding as seen through a protective mask.