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Old 08-26-2014, 03:57 PM   #1 (permalink)
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The Cost of Learning (aeromodding a Toyota pickup)

Ok, so I've been a Ecomodder lurker for some time now an all I have really done is adjust the nut behind the wheel. now I'm commuting to and from college (15 miles twice a day) four days a week an my budget is tight... Fine I'm cheap an I've been thinking about a few mods for my vehicle a Toyota Pickup, 4 cylinder, 5 speed. Its my baby! I've gotten up to 30 Mpg highway on long trips, but back to mods. I know that the most beneficial mods are in the back like a aero bed cover, an boat tails. but they are not in the budget right now. So I've been thinking I should try a set of rear wheel skirts an track my tank to tank mpg to see improvements. What should I make them out of? how should I attach them? I've been thinking I should make a cardboard prototype an use duct-tape. But I'm also concerned about looks too, so I was thinking of painting, but if I'm going to do that why not do it right... Right?

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Old 08-26-2014, 05:44 PM   #2 (permalink)
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What should I make them out of?
I made mine out of an election sign.
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how should I attach them?
I used screws and bolts.

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I've been thinking I should make a cardboard prototype an use duct-tape. But I'm also concerned about looks too, so I was thinking of painting, but if I'm going to do that why not do it right... Right?
I used cardboard first as a template and then cut the plastic sign to match. Then I spray-painted to match the color of my car. They look ok and have been on there for almost a year now.

I learned a lot from using the search feature and looking at how other people had made theirs. Other than that, I just attacked it and figured it out as I went along.
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Old 08-26-2014, 11:29 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I don't have any election signs that I can get my hands on, but I do have a lot of cardboard an thin wood strips that I can use to make up a sturdy design. thinking a coat of paint and poly would seal the deal an keep water out while looking good. I may be able to rig something up so I can secure bolts on my skirts an just use a wing nut or something of the sort so it has an easy on/off capability. Thanks for the ideas, I'll look into materials tomorrow since I have only one class tomorrow. Seems like a waste driving down for just an hour an a half class, but it is what it is.
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Old 08-27-2014, 11:16 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
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I know that the most beneficial mods are in the back like a aero bed cover, an boat tails. but they are not in the budget right now.
I honestly think you could do this pretty much for free if you wanted to, scrounging waste wood for a frame, used sign material for the skin. No?
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Old 08-27-2014, 11:56 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I honestly think you could do this pretty much for free if you wanted to, scrounging waste wood for a frame, used sign material for the skin. No?
Yes you are right. I actually have two large cardboard panels I've made for an aero shell but for one I didn't think that cardboard an wood strips would hold up to highway speeds for that large of a project. Also I'm on my dads insurance right now so he's worried about a blind spot an when he says no he means no. So I'm starting on something simpler to get the feel for it. I'll work my way up to a tonneau cover.
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Old 08-27-2014, 12:04 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Speaking of which: an actual tonneau cover isn't as good as an aero cap , but better than an open bed. Also easy to make with scrounged materials, and should meet with dad's blind spot approval.
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Old 08-27-2014, 12:22 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Speaking of which: an actual tonneau cover isn't as good as an aero cap , but better than an open bed. Also easy to make with scrounged materials, and should meet with dad's blind spot approval.
The aero cap is later to come I've been on the lookout for old windows people are throwing out so I can snatch some glass an have it cut for a peep hole then I will be able to go full out on the aerocap. but if not 'Ill have to go with the half tonneau.
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Old 08-27-2014, 06:21 PM   #8 (permalink)
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glass

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The aero cap is later to come I've been on the lookout for old windows people are throwing out so I can snatch some glass an have it cut for a peep hole then I will be able to go full out on the aerocap. but if not 'Ill have to go with the half tonneau.
Any glazing material which goes down the road must be DOT rated.
Residential window glass might get you in trouble.
Keep your eye out for some sort of Plexiglass/Lexan for the peep hole,as they're both certified as replacement DOT glazing.
I've used discarded skylights which had a defect and just cut good material out.
If you put masking tape on the plastic,mark your lines and cut,you won't scratch the material.A sabre saw or bandsaw works great.
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Old 08-27-2014, 08:08 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Second to what aerohead said.

I get cut-offs from the local hippy recyclers. for instance triangles of 1/8" ABS 42" on the short sides (US$4ea). If I could find an old satellite dish to use for a slump mold, that would be great. If you had the dish, you could just cut that up.

Or you could drill a hole in a disk of aluminum sheet, chuck it up and spin it in an improvised English wheel, or clay on a potters wheel. It would make something like a big Moon disk with a hole in the center.

Then cut it in half and trim each half to the shape of your wheel well.
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Old 12-17-2014, 03:32 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I know its been a while since I have posted anything to the thread, but due to the cold weather I've been getting about 23 out of my truck and it hurts after seeing 26 in the warmer months. So that pushed me to buy materials for a tonneau cover, two sheets of 7/16 OSB, and various washers, nuts, screws, and bolts. I plan for it to be removable, and light but strong enough (may have to put ribs on the underside) to withstand the wind. also saving a few bucks and having some fun with this project I plan on forging my own "L" brackets to secure the cover.

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aero, commute, pickup, rear wheel skirts, toyota

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