Carbon Fiber Racing Car Chassis

Rivers Carbon was asked to produce a 2 seater carbon fiber racing car chassis for the Toyota racing series. Toyota had built a mock-up of the F1 car chassis to check for the fit of the driver and passenger.

Rivers carbon took the mock up and developed a design of the carbon fiber race car chassis. We imported special low temperature pre-preg to allow the chassis to be cured in the autoclave despite some areas having PVC core. We developed a center section that incorporated a drivers seat back, an area for the passengers knees and storage for a second fire extinguisher. There had to be hard points for the drivers harness and hold down bolts for the extinguisher and roll hoop.

Both halves of the donor chassis were mounted into a custom made alignment jig. A plug was CNC cut to make the mould for the mid section of the chassis.

The work was carried out in 3 stages.
  • The outside skin was cured followed by the honey comb core and then the inside skins.
  • The center section was then post bonded in.
  • To allow more room for the passenger the rear bulkhead was removed and a new rear seat back was built.

The center section is hollow and was co-cured in a 2 piece female mould. Note the cut out in the top to accommodate the drivers helmet

SAE car

The Auckland University 06 SAE car featuring chassis and wing elements autoclave cured by Rivers Carbon.

After going to a pre-preg honey comb carbon fiber race car chassis, the Auckland university team saved 25% weight over the original infused chassis. The 07 chassis had a torsional stiffness of over 10000 n/degree. With hard points and co-cured steering and roll hoop the chassis weight was 25kgs.

Honey comb core with under tray hard points ready to bag up

The first curing operation ready to start. A laminate sample is being prepared for cure to validate the modification.