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Drilling Carbon Fiber, wheel repair, and powder coating


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  • Drilling Carbon Fiber, wheel repair, and powder coating

    Hello everyone. Well, all 3 of you anyway. Lol! Just kidding. Anyway, I have some questions about getting some things taken care of.

    1) Does anyone happen to know of anybody that can drill the holes in a carbon fiber hood for some hood pins without messing it up? I have read mixed reviews about doing it so I'm leery about it.

    2) Has anyone ever dealt with Rim Repair Houston off of 1960? I was driving home one night about 2 months ago and I was turning at a stop light when someone ran through the light. The jerk was stopped and right when I started to turn they just took off while the was still red. I had to move over real quick to keep from getting hit and I brushed my front passenger side wheel across the curb. Nothing real major. I saw that RRH repaired wheels and did powder coating so I was thinking of getting the wheels powder coated black chrome just to change it up a little.

    Thanks for any input.
    Sometimes we forget

  • #2
    LOL, that's actually true! Just me, Mike and Joe a majority of the time anyway.
    2012 Camaro 2LT RS V6 6 spd


    • #3
      Never experienced drilling CF. I would think taking a very small bit for a pilot hole first would help. Then slowly work your way bigger.

      For wheels I know there is a place on Veterans Memorial that does good work. Richey Auto Collision uses them but can't remember the name of the place. It's not far from Richey. I always worry about the texture and gloss shade after they paint them.


      • #4
        I have never personally drilled CF but have heard that as long as you have a freshly sharpened bit it isn't bad.

        As far as wheel repair goes the guy Mike suggested is good. Friend went there and had 2 wheels repaired and was pleased with the work. I don't know the name of the guy but I'm sure a quick call could get you an answer. I have a guy in College Station who is phenomenal and good prices, but that is likely further than you want to drive.


        • #5
          I don't really know what the avg pricing is for that type of stuff but they only quoted me roughly around $550 and 2 days to repair the scuffed up wheel and powder coat all 4 of them. I wouldn't object to the drive depending on the time it would take to get it done.

          The one common thing I keep seeing on drilling the cf is to use a sharp bit at the highest speed possible but even then some people are saying it didn't come out clean. That is really why I was trying to find someone who works with it all of the time. I found a couple of spots that say they do it, I just haven't called yet and thought it might be more beneficial to check here 1st.

          Thanks for the feedback.
          Sometimes we forget


          • #6
            I drilled my carbon fiber hood for hood pins. For me the most nerve wracking part was the measuring. I quickly resolved that by installing the pins, and the hood. I put a drop of whiteout liquid on the pin tops, and then gently closed the hood until contact was made.

            From there I used a brand new, sharp, kobalt drillbit to make a pilot hole. I seem to remember it being a 1/4 inch pilot hole. These were obviously drilled from the underside. I then used very good quality, 3M, masking tape over the area to be drilled. This is to help minimize chipping.

            Now you have two options depending on your wallet depth. Use an appropriately sized standard style bit, kobalt or high speed steel, or if deep enough use an abrasive bit, such as an appropriately sized diamond core type bit. There are other abrasives but these are by far the best.

            I used a new kobalt bit, and drilled as perpendicular to the surface as possible. Moderate speed on the bit and just enough pressure to make it bite... As an example, if you use a Dewalt 18-20 volt drill, just add a little bit of pressure to the weight of it...

            So, drill the hole the size you need... keep this in mind. The pin is sticking up, and the hood closes in an arc... If you drill the hole just big enough, and the hood doesn't close, don't panic.. look down through the hole and see where contact is being made... open the hood, and slather a little bit more white out on the pin, then contact the hood to the pin.

            This is where either, a Dremel, a die grinder or a small crescent shaped fine tooth file comes in handy. Depending on how hood you are, maybe all three... Anyway, flare the hole in the direction needed, and repeat these steps until the hood closes fully and freely. A little bit too big a hole is better than one too small... Think about different seasons and hot cool spells, both from the car running and sitting in ice cold or blazing heat...

            What brand of hood pins did you get... In most cases, the hole doesn't need to be perfect as the top lock covers it anyway... I'll have to save a couple of images from my other iPad but I can show you mine as finished. I have the "Ring Brothers" pins...
            Last edited by SSE 4 2SS; 09-08-2018, 03:16 PM.


            • #7
              Now, another item to cover if you have the Ring Brothers or other similar removable pin.... Retention cables....

              If you want or need them, they are easy to make.

              Go to HomeDepot or Lowes and buy about three to four feet of 1/16 inch wire cable. You'll need to buy a pack of suitable cable crimps, and the crimping tool if you don't have one... They are not expensive... Now the most important piece, is a weaved wire loom type material. If they don't have it, any electronics store should have it.... It's very small diameter nylon material weaved like the finger trap toys we had as kids. You'll also need some heat shrink just large enough to fit over the crimps.

              Now, You can't crimp the loom, but you can wrap right up to it... Slide a crimp on the end of the cable, and fold the cable through the "D" ring of the removable pin (safety pin) and back through the crimp. Make this loop fairly small or tight, with very little tail left... Its tricky but can be done.... Now, slide a heat shrink tubing about one inch long over the cable and over the crimp, to a point tightly up against the "D" ring of the safety pin.

              Now it's time to measure.... Open the hood and find a well positioned bolt holding the front fascia cover on.... Mentally image where that is in relation to the hood pin. Close the hood and insert the safety pin into the hood pin, as it will generally be.... Hold the cable at about the front edge of the hood in the general direction of the selected bolt under the hood, and mark the cable... Now open the hood and continue the measurement to the selected bolt, and add about 3-4 inches. Cut the cable... Lay the wire loom next to the cut piece with the loop already crimped, and measure the loom.... Measure from the base of the loop, to a point about three inches from the cut end of the cable... Slide the loom over the cut end and up to and over the crimp until the other end is about three inches of bare cable. Now, slide the heat shrink down over the loom and the crimp until it's all evenly spaced. Shrink the tubing locking the loom in place and covering the crimp as well as the cable. The loop through the "D" ring will be exposed but that's no big deal.

              Now, slide the second heat shrink piece over the cut end of the cable and over the loom.... Slide the second crimp on, and make a call loop of cable pushing the cut end back into the crimp, and crimp it... The loop should be just a bit larger than the threaded portion of the selected bolt location. Try to minimize the loose tail but as much as a half inch or so is fine.... Then this is crimped, slide the heat shrink over the tail and shrink it, trying if possible to lock down the loom at the same time.... The heat shrink can cover the crimp in this one, but it's not necessary....

              Now, open the hood if it isn't already, and remove the selected bolt. Pass the threaded portion through the loop and reinstall it. If the loop is too big and the bolt head passes through it, no worries, go to the hardware store and buy a slightly longer bolt of the same thread size, and a suitable washer. Get two bolts and two washers so both sides match. If desired, black paint can be used on the washer and bolt head.

              Thread the bolt and washer if needed through the cable loop and reinstall it. Tighten it, but not overly tight....

              Repeat this for the other side and install it as well.... Then close the hood, install the safety pins and enjoy.... This will keep you from losing the pins inadvertently and it will keep a-holes from taking the pins because they can....

              The loom allows the cable to fit comfortably between the hood and front fascia without scratching the paint.... I've had mine on for four years and no issues... You'll also enjoy not losing the damn things.... I lost two of them on passes at the mile, and a couple in the pit area while working on the car.... They aren't expensive but they are aggravating when you lose them... Hence, me building the retention cables...

              Attached Files
              Last edited by SSE 4 2SS; 09-08-2018, 03:13 PM.


              • #8
                Thanks for the how to. I actually haven't picked out my hood pins yet but I do want something like what you have. Great idea for the retention cables. I'm pretty sure I would not have thought about doing it that way. My wallet has seen better days at the moment with buying the new house and all. Lol!
                It seems like every time I turn around I'm doing something else. I need to get a fence built at the new house, just waiting on an answer for the P.O.A for their approval or not. Then I'm getting ready to upgrade the fuel system and add e85. Still debating on doing a cam swap, but the list goes on and on. Thanks again.
                Sometimes we forget