Apr 1, 2015 update to the Tornado Typhoon project car

Changing the Door Hinge Design

Our first step after marking where we felt the hinges should be mounted was to cut a sunken mounting area on both the body and the doors. We used a route bit attached to our Dremel tool.
With mounting areas started, we kept test-fitting until we got the hinges at the depth we wanted.
When we couldn’t get to an area to put nuts on the back of the bolts, we glassed in plates and then installed threads into the backing plates.
Our one-dollar swap meet lionizing straps are going to work perfectly. Again, we built aluminum plates to go behind them to help support the fragile fiberglass body.

When looking through pictures of old Tornados we found two distinct door hinge designs. Most of the cars had really cheap looking external hinges. A few cars seemed to have more typical concealed hinges.

With a trip to the Amelia Island Concours in our future, we decided the external hinges were not going to cut it for our Tornado Typhoon. And since this car is a special and could be finished any way the owner desires, we decided to look into the feasibility of some concealed hinges.

Ah, the beauty of fiberglass! Imagineering and changes in the body are relatively easy.

Our first step was to find suitable hinges. After looking around a bit, we stumbled on a boat supply place that had beautiful stainless steel hinges. We picked up four of them for well under $100 and got to work.

After marking where we wanted our new hinges, we carefully cut where we wanted our sunken hinges to sit with a router.

After carefully test fitting, we glassed in behind where our new hinges would sit, to make the area stronger. We also made some aluminum backing plates to further reinforce this critical area.

Our final step was to attach two leather door limiting straps that we had found at a swap meet for a dollar each.

Moss Motors most likely has these limiting straps as well, as they were popular on a lot of British cars from the fifties. You could even make your own out of an old leather belt and some tubular steel.

We were shocked how well this whole system worked and our doors shut more like a Mercedes than an old kit car.

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