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Seals still difficult after a year?

kptesl

Member
Feb 22, 2014
51
11
US
I found interesting in yesterday's call that Elon brought up the door seals again as a challenge. He also say that a difficulty in building cars is that it's difficult to anticipate what the final challenges will be/who the worst suppliers will be. To my knowledge, the seals were already a challenge a year ago- so easy to anticipate.

I wonder why it's so hard. The only thing I can imagine is that in a conventional door that the metal pushes against the seal closer to the normal force direction whereas in the falcon doors the door has to slide against the seal sideways in more of a shear force direction?

Will be interesting to see how this pans out, and whether seal reliability and or leaking will be an issue in the future.
 
I suspect the difficulty arises from the articulation of the falcon-wing. Imagine a normal car door that articulated around a split in the middle. You've got to seal that seam as well as provide a contiguous seal around the entire door that accommodates the movement.
 
I got the impression the issue leaned more to "thickness" and constant sealing. He said it caused the "bright" parts not to align. I interpreted as the potential reason some of the door handles and door trims appear to be slightly off. Especially the door handles are easily recognized when the doors don't close precisely. Just a thought in addition to sealing against water.
 

Vitold

Active Member
Aug 10, 2015
1,688
1,950
NM
I think the issue is a combination of latch and seal.

While Tesla may have had the seal ready long time ago they may have found out recently (we know that mules did not have working latch for a long time) that seal was inadequate for the latching mechanism (which has to pull the door down and towards the body in order to seal top and side). I'm guessing that pressure exerted through the latch is not strong enough to counteract springiness of the seal (it's a big seal after all).
 
It was pretty clear that he was talking about issues with suppliers, not an engineering issue. They have a door seal, its tested and it works. The problem clearly is that a supplier (or suppliers) who was supposed to supply (presumably) many thousands of the seals is having problems. Or one of the suppliers to the supplier is having problems, etc etc. He mentioned unlucky suppliers, mentioned fires and floods etc.
 

Vitold

Active Member
Aug 10, 2015
1,688
1,950
NM
It was pretty clear that he was talking about issues with suppliers, not an engineering issue. They have a door seal, its tested and it works. The problem clearly is that a supplier (or suppliers) who was supposed to supply (presumably) many thousands of the seals is having problems. Or one of the suppliers to the supplier is having problems, etc etc. He mentioned unlucky suppliers, mentioned fires and floods etc.

Looking at photos of founders cars it's clear that they have not perfected door alignment probably due to the seal placement as EM explained:

It's just a question of how quickly we can solve each issue. I mean they are really down to like the little things, like the placement of the seal on the door and whether that results in the bright trim alignment being correct, this is quite nuanced.

It's obvious they are still solving engineering issues not just waiting for suppliers to deliver.
 
Looking at photos of founders cars it's clear that they have not perfected door alignment probably due to the seal placement as EM explained:



It's obvious they are still solving engineering issues not just waiting for suppliers to deliver.

Yes IMHO it has been obvious since the "launch" that this is the case. That event was closer to a reveal than a launch. My guess is that they will deliver ~100 in the last week of December (which they will save up and release all at once) and say they met the goal. Then another month(s) pause....
I also guess they may try to do something with the seats (and/or lower priced model) before real production ramp after seeing a large percentage of cancellations (again just guessing) among Sigs (they figure prod cancellations will be much higher).

I have resigned myself to the fact that the car is not really ready and it will be a long long wait for prod reservations. I may buy something else in the mean time since I don't trust Tesla to be strait forward anymore. I was really let down after the launch with the lack of information (still no info on actual specs etc...).
 
Yes IMHO it has been obvious since the "launch" that this is the case. That event was closer to a reveal than a launch. My guess is that they will deliver ~100 in the last week of December (which they will save up and release all at once) and say they met the goal. Then another month(s) pause....
I also guess they may try to do something with the seats (and/or lower priced model) before real production ramp after seeing a large percentage of cancellations (again just guessing) among Sigs (they figure prod cancellations will be much higher).

I have resigned myself to the fact that the car is not really ready and it will be a long long wait for prod reservations. I may buy something else in the mean time since I don't trust Tesla to be strait forward anymore. I was really let down after the launch with the lack of information (still no info on actual specs etc...).

Sorry to hear that you were let down. The wait has been excruciating no doubt! I think TM is in a tough spot at the moment trying to manage expectations of customers, shareholders, employees, etc., etc., etc. It's a delicate balance to be sure! I have faith that, at the end of the day, they are doing the right thing for the longterm health of the company, customer satisfaction, and investor relations. I for one will continue to stand by and wait patiently knowing that I am contributing to a greater cause. Having said that, I do realize that pain thresholds vary ..guess mine is a bit higher.
 
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