Home » Autos and Cars

Show and Performance Quality Body Kits

Aug 4, 2008
Personal automobile care and repair can be a rewarding and valuable activity to take up alone or with a friend or family member. An increasingly popular and enjoyable project is body kit installation, including those for "show."

Although it is a demanding and often tricky endeavor, installing a show quality body kit will engage and satisfy the persistent amateur body worker.

It is always important to heed to the difference in the proper outcome of a body kit meant for practical use on the street and for one meant to be shown, which logistically comes out to be a quarter inch.

Assuming that the body kit has already been sanded and prepped for paint, the first step is a process called "bedding," which entails custom fitting the after market body kit to the car. To do this, apply body filler to all the parts meant for use in the installation and continue to fill it in all seams. Begin with some masking tape over the area where the body kit meets the vehicle.

Then, sand over the edge of the kit to a get a coarse surface and apply a liberal amount of body filler to the body kit with a quick setting body filler mixture. This special body filler uses a higher ratio of catalyst in the mixture and is generally dark blue or red in color.

The filler dries around the kit and gives it its proper shape. As the process happens relatively quickly, it is important to put it in place swiftly and to keep it there steadily. Once the body kit is in its final position, hold it securely for several minutes. Because this can be especially challenging and unnatural for many people, it is recommended that, especially for beginners, someone helps with this step to avoid movement and ruining the body kit.

After the filler has set and hardened, remove it from the car. You should be able to see that gap is completely filled, and if it is not, repeat the process until the outcome is satisfactory. Then, smooth out the body kit by sanding it so it blends with the body filler. At this point, you may continually test the fit until you decide it is sufficient. If certain areas need more work, add a small layer of body filler and repeat the process again, without forgetting to sand each time.

Once perfect, you may remove the masking tape from the car. Drill pilot holes for the rivets, which are generally better than screws and tend not to come loose as easily. Use the rivets to secure it in place and finally, paint the car. Done correctly, this process will yield a perfect fitting and show quality after market body kit installation.

Becoming an expert on body kit installation may involve great joy as it may frustration. While this can be a highly enjoyable and gratifying activity, it is difficult, time consuming, and takes practice to build competence. A body shop will always be a convenient and easy alternative, but for those ready to tackle a challenge, body kit installation remains an enticing possibility.
About the Author
If you want to find some of the best body kits available on the internet for all makes and models, then check out Andy's Auto Sport Body Kits.
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