Apr 14, 2015 update to the Tornado Typhoon project car

Building a Battery Box

We fiberglassed our new battery box into place.
From there, we built our newly crafted package shelf from plywood.
Then we glazed everything together and cut out a correctly sized hole for our compartment doors.
Now that the area is finished and carpeted, no one could guess that the battery and a storage area reside underneath.

Since our Project Tornado Typhoon is a special, we felt we could build it any way we wanted as long as we kept it period-correct.

Our car was originally sold as an “occasional four-seater.” These would have to be the four shortest people in the world, since the back seat is utterly cramped. We decided that fitting two more seats would not be practical.

However, we were in need of a good, safe, weight-balanced location for the battery. (Originally it resided by the passenger’s feet.) We also wanted an area to store tools and spares, since the trunk is rather tiny and the car lacks a glovebox.

We had the perfect solution: Fill in the rear seat area and make a package shelf, like on a Triumph or MG.

We went to Lowe’s and bought a sheet of lightweight, one-eighth-inch birch plywood. We used that to create the top and front of our shelf, then fiberglassed everything together. Underneath, we cut out the floor and built a battery box to hold a 24-series battery. We fiberglassed this box into the new package shelf, making sure we didn’t obscure the frame or run into ground clearance issues.

We built the battery box by making a cardboard box pattern and fiberglassing over it. When the fiberglass was dry, we simply removed the cardboard. To finish off the whole area, we installed two compartment doors that be bought at a boat supply store. Since these doors look too modern, we covered them with carpet, which also provides some security.

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View comments on the CMS forums
RossD PowerDork
4/17/15 7:35 a.m.

The car is coming along great! It's very cool!

tr8todd Dork
4/17/15 10:43 a.m.

Make sure you vent that box somehow.

Tim Suddard
Tim Suddard Publisher
4/18/15 3:23 p.m.

Good point!

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