SEMA eNews Vol. 17, No. 17, April 24, 2014

Guitarist Billy Gibbons' Latest Hot Rod Visits SEMA Garage

By John Stewart and Carr Winn

 

Last week, in the newly completed Media Cove in the SEMA Garage, Pete Chapouris and Jimmy Shine of world-famous So-Cal Speed Shop brought a celebrated project car they're building for car collector and guitarist Billy Gibbons.

   

The SEMA Garage – Industry Innovations Center welcomed its first customers last week in the newly completed photography cove. Pete Chapouris and Jimmy Shine of world-famous So-Cal Speed Shop brought a celebrated project car they are building for legendary car collector and rock guitarist Billy Gibbons, who came along to tour the facility and see how the SEMA Garage will help So-Cal fabricate a custom trim piece.

The car, based on a ’33 Ford three-window coupe, is chopped and loaded with custom features, including a headlight that retracts into the hood and a jagged line that runs from front to back. The jagged accent line had been executed in paint, but the plan is to make a 3D piece. To do that, the car was scanned using the SEMA Garage Faro arm laser tool, producing a CAD file. By scanning the curvature of the car surface and the exact shape of the trim design, a new 3D trim piece can be quickly fabricated.

Billy Gibbons, Pete Chapouris
Billy Gibbons (right) with Pete Chapouris of So-Cal.
 
   

“The SEMA Garage has come a long way in the last few months, and one of the things they now have is a Faro arm, so we can scan the car and do the trim for it,” Chapouris said. “Trim has always been an issue because we usually make it out of brass, it’s hand made, it takes months. It’s very, very expensive. This completely solves the problem,” Chapouris said. He estimated that the Faro scanning process would cut the time involved by about two thirds.

When finished, the car will appear at the 2014 SEMA Show, taking place November 4–7 in Las Vegas.

“We usually think of laser scanning as a tool for creating a prototype part in preparation for manufacturing,” said Mike Spagnola, SEMA vice president of product development. “And usually, we scan new cars. But our scanning tool also offers the perfect solution to rapidly create a one-off piece for a custom vehicle.”

The SEMA Garage is located next to the association's headquarters in Diamond Bar, California. The photo studio was designed with the lighting, space and equipment needed to provide members with a purpose-built location to produce visually spectacular images of their products and vehicles for promotion and marketing.

With the completion of the cove, the garage is now comprised of four cells: one is a complete emissions-certification lab and chassis dyno (via SEMA's partnership with the Automobile Club of Southern California; cell two is a the garage that includes a lift and a full array of tools; cell three is the media cove; and cell four is a large training room and welcome center.

For more information about the facility, including upcoming events and to schedule time in the Media Cove, contact Mike Spagnola at mikes@sema.org.

Jimmy Shine, Pete Chapouris, Billy Gibbons, Mike Spagnola
Rock guitarist Billy Gibbons (middle) with So Cal's Pete Chapouris and Jimmy Shine (left), and SEMA's Mike Spagnola (right). 
  Gibbons hot rod, sema garage
In addition to the newly opened Media Cove, the SEMA Garage is equipped with an array of state-of-the-art tools for product development.
So Cal Speed Shop, Billy Gibbons, SEMA Garage
When finished, Gibbons' hot rod will appear at the 2014 SEMA Show, taking place November 4–7 in Las Vegas.
  Billy Gibbons, hot rod light
Based on a ’33 Ford three-window coupe, the car is chopped and loaded with custom features, including a retractable "hoodlight."
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