GermanLook Forums  

Go Back   GermanLook Forums > Technical Section > German Look Tuning

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old December 15th 2009, 04:20
owdlvr's Avatar
owdlvr owdlvr is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Canada - West Coast
Posts: 794
'69 Identity Crisis. GL/Classic/Rally

I figure I spend enough time on GL.net, that it's time I introduce the '69. The car has a bit of an identity crisis, which we'll get to. Initially I bought it as a return to Air-Cooled VW's and as my "classic" car. My usual cars up to this point was Audi's, included a fully stripped and caged Audi 90 Quattro rally project. Regardless, I opted to buy a '69 Beetle instead of pulling my '75 Beetle out of storage.

As I found it, in June of '08:




Initially the plan was to return the car to 1969 stock and enjoy it just as VW intended. My theory was that since I had my lexan-windowed loud-as-heck "fun car" (the Audi), I should be fine enjoying a nice classic. Well, I just can't leave well enough alone. Today the stock guys look at my car and say its "too rally" or soon "too GL", while you GL guys are more likely to snicker and think "geesh, look at that classic". But I suppose that's kind of the point. My car is modified for my needs, my wants, and what I use it for...screw fitting a mold for "classic", "Cal-Look" or "GL". I just don't care how you label it, as long as it's bringing a smile to my face every time I drive it. Deep down inside I have an appreciation for two 'styles' though; stock or 'classic', and German Look or 'race'. And so, the manifesto for my '69 became simple:

Any and all modifications to my '69 have to be reversible within a weekend to go back to a stock or classic look.

Ideally, on a whim, I can throw the car up on axle stands Friday, and roll out on Sunday with either a 'stock' bug, or a fun machine. Save, I suppose, for the lowering...that just looks good on anything! With that in mind, here's a quick pictoral history...

Bought the car in June of '08, replaced all the chrome and freshened it up for a 'stock', but lightly lowered, look:



Within a couple of weeks I had won peoples choice for late-model at the local VW Show. Apparently, though, I have a hidden need to race every vehicle I own...so an entry was made into the 2008 LA-to-Vegas Beetleball.




We won stock class, and our time of 6hrs and 11min still stands as the stock class record. Not too shabby for a bug which was spitting metal shavings out on the drain plug! The fun of hauling-butt in the bug turned into a need for better performance, and thus begins the steps towards something that just slightly fits here into the German Look community.

First up was the front disc brakes, stock Ghia units since that still met my 'stock'-ish requirements. Next up was the 914 tach in the speedo hole so I could better time my heel-toe driving. The OMP suede steering wheel and rally computer made it over to the bug at some point as well. I saw a photo of a German car with the BugTech shifter, but for over a year didn't realize it was a production unit, and not some shifter made in a home shop. Apologies in advance...but in my defense I was reverse-engineering one from the photo long before I knew it was production.



In the photo above is my test-unit designed strictly for testing multiple pivot locations with minimal change time between them. I can switch out to a new pivot (and thus different reduction in throw) in about 1min time. Great for testing and deciding on what I want my end-unit to feel like.

There was the home-garage paint job, which you can read about here.

Somewhere along the way there was a photoshoot for Thule, this is how my bug spends most of it's summer...


And then this past weekend I opted to slide a little closer to the GL side of the equation. My 225 track tires off the rally car looked far too tempting, and I was planning some suspension upgrades as well...so I figured what the heck.

On went a set of rear discs, a rear sway bar, and 225/50/15's on all four corners. There are some issues to work out, in the front at least. I need to drop down to 205's to gain some steering radius, and may have to consider a different wheel all-together. I'm now drilled for both 4x130 and 4x108 which means I can have my stock wheels, or any of my Audi's wheels at the drop of a hat. Better photos once I get car outside (and it stops snowing!).





My full Flickr Gallery of photos is here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/dhdynam...7605562102490/

The plan for this coming spring/summer is more tarmac rallies, a track day or two and another 30,000+ miles (currently averaging 35,000 miles a year!). Can't go to the track without a bigger motor, so a 1776 is in the works. Might have to fit the Carbon seats from the rally car into the Bug as well. Now I find myself thinking about how to ditch the chrome for a cleaner look...

I'll update this thread as I play with things that I think would be of interest to the users of this Forum.

-Dave
__________________
'71 Type 1 - Rally Project
'58 Type 1 - I bought an early!?!
'73 Type 1 - Proper Germanlook project
'68 Type 1 - Interm German 'look' project
'75 Type 1 - Family Heirloom
'93 Chevy 3500 pickup - Cummins Swap

Last edited by owdlvr; March 4th 2010 at 15:27.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old December 15th 2009, 04:32
Steve C's Avatar
Steve C Steve C is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 1,744
Hi

Excellent read. Congratulations on well a executed build.

Steve
__________________
STI powered 1303 in the works.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old December 15th 2009, 08:15
petevw's Avatar
petevw petevw is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: toronto, ontario, canada
Posts: 1,346
I remember seeing your car in Vegas in '08.

Saw it drive over the Hoover Dam(you drove past me, i had the green Gallardo parked on the dam), and i think it was in the parking lot of Circus Circus on the strip.

Pete
__________________
'72 super
'65 bus
'52 split
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old December 15th 2009, 17:22
owdlvr's Avatar
owdlvr owdlvr is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Canada - West Coast
Posts: 794
Hey Pete, I definitely remember the Green Gallardo! The way you guys were eyeing the beetle I was sure you were Air-cooled guys. Warwick and I were having a good laugh about that.


----


Sometimes staying with the 'standard' stuff really is more challenging then going with better components. Check out the brake-line routing required to mount up the "popular" rear disc kits for Beetles. These kits use a Ford rear caliper, so first off you have an imperial-to-metric adapter, which is leaving the car out towards the tailpipes. A quick 180 with brake line but then you need a 100mm flex line to allow for caliper movement on the sliders. From there it's standard hardline into the standard beetle flex line. It's as neat as I can make this setup...but the whole time I was thinking about how much easier a set of Wilwoods would be!





-Dave
__________________
'71 Type 1 - Rally Project
'58 Type 1 - I bought an early!?!
'73 Type 1 - Proper Germanlook project
'68 Type 1 - Interm German 'look' project
'75 Type 1 - Family Heirloom
'93 Chevy 3500 pickup - Cummins Swap
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old December 16th 2009, 04:37
Humble's Avatar
Humble Humble is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Boulder Creek, CA
Posts: 758
Great car and a good start too! I didn't see the beetle ball rally until it was too late or I would have been there, I hope this is a yearly thing. Have you thought about blacking out the trim to go with the wheels? Speaking of wheels how well did the A032Rs hold up on the bug and which compound are they?
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old December 16th 2009, 20:04
owdlvr's Avatar
owdlvr owdlvr is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Canada - West Coast
Posts: 794
Thanks Mate. Beetleball events are indeed yearly. The full series now includes Vancouver Canada to Mexico, L.A. to Vegas, the winter Blizzard 500 and new for this year is New York to San Francisco. http://www.beetleball.com for all the series info.

I've got a second set of trim for the car, just haven't gotten around to hitting it with semi-gloss black. Not sure how much of it I'm going to do yet...I'm wary of that '70s blacked-out-trim look.

The A032R's have been on the car for a total of 4 days, during which we've got about 8" of snow...They've just been on my Audi 90 Quattro rally car, and won't actually be used on the bug. It's too bad, awesome tire, but not made any more.

-Dave
__________________
'71 Type 1 - Rally Project
'58 Type 1 - I bought an early!?!
'73 Type 1 - Proper Germanlook project
'68 Type 1 - Interm German 'look' project
'75 Type 1 - Family Heirloom
'93 Chevy 3500 pickup - Cummins Swap
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old December 17th 2009, 06:23
cookvw's Avatar
cookvw cookvw is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Durango, coloRADo, USA
Posts: 222
about your shifter.... i love it! ive wanted to make one myself. is it hard to fab up? you have any pics or even info on how to make it?+
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old December 17th 2009, 10:32
oasis's Avatar
oasis oasis is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: timonium, md usa
Posts: 1,290
Very cool car.

You shouldn't be concerned about anybody else saying your car is too anything (or not enough something for that matter). You didn't buy/build it for them. Besides, one of the great things about German Look dubs is there is no template. Certainly, there are tendencies due to popularity, cost or inherent number of options available but the key is for the car to function. Since it's your car, it should function for you.

Well done.

(Isn't that the shifter Dave -- NO_H2O -- sells?)
__________________
(2004-2008): 1971 1302 w/2056
Searching for a new project ...
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old December 18th 2009, 03:51
owdlvr's Avatar
owdlvr owdlvr is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Canada - West Coast
Posts: 794
Let me clear up the questions about the shifter before I get myself into hot water...it's not the BugTech Shifter, it's a copy. I started copying it before I knew it was a production unit...otherwise, I wouldn't have done it.

About a year ago I found a random photo of a bug with a CNC shifter unit in it. The photo wasn't even on a beetle site. Anyways, I thought at the time it was a one-off since I couldn't find anything online about it. Started doing a bit of review-and-duplicate, based on the photos. Turns out I was actually working on a copy of a production unit, the BugTech unit. When I started the project I didn't know, and I was rather wary of posting it here since it's commercially available.

My current unit, the initial prototype, is a ridiculously ugly setup jig which is strictly for figuring out where I want my pivot locations...and thus my throw ratios. It's built mostly of square stock which is easier and faster to drill out then round stock. I can also make all the required parts on my drill press and a lathe, both of which I have easier access to as opposed to a mill. Some of the parts for my final good-looking unit have already been made, and the end result will be quite similar (by nature of being a copy) to the Bug Tech unit.

I suppose I should highlight a few things for those who might consider following my path. First off, its not cheaper. I only buy scrap aluminum and off-cuts from my supplier, and I have easy access to a mill and a lathe. By the time I'm finished my prototype and production unit, I'll be at about 50-70% of the BugTech Cost in materials, plus beer for machine time. If I factor in my time, I'm well over the cost of just buying a BT unit. Secondly, the BugTech guys have solved some problems that aren't immediately apparent, I'm not about to share those here because they aren't apparent in the photos and only after you build one do the problems surface. Some are relatively obvious, I've found reverse instead of second a few times, but others aren't so easy to figure out. Suffice it to say that it does definitely take some serious thinking to get it 'right'.

My unit, though, will be different in a few regards. I wasn't happy with an equal amount of throw reduction for fore-aft (1-2, 3-4) and lateral (2-3) movement. I'm currently changing the adjustable-pivot design to allow for two pivot locations, to try and "open up" the space between 2nd and 4th. If I set current design up so that 1-2 or 3-4 feels like an inch of movement...the space between 2 and 4 feels like 1/8". Tough to nail second on every downshift! So i'll need to create a second pivot to adjust the leverage ratio of the lateral movement separately. The overall height of my unit will also be different then the BugTech unit. That alone requires a completely different lower geometry.




Now that I have a relatively crisp and snappy shifter, I'm going nuts with the difficulty of heel-toeing the bug. With my Audi, I have the pedals set up to suit me well for left-foot braking and also heel-toe. With the bug, the gas pedal is just too low, relative to the brake pedal. The easy solution would be a block of wood, or a chunk of aluminum out of the scrap bin...but by now you should guess that I have an appreciation for adjusting things "just right". Enter my gas-pedal spacer design:



The left bit mounts to the stock gas pedal, the two middle spacers are stackable, and the top panel bolts onto the rest. I don't machine grip surface into the top plate for two reasons a) I don't really own the milling tools for it and b) I actually prefer to use skateboard grip tape. It's cheap, grippy, and easy to replace when worn out.

-Dave
__________________
'71 Type 1 - Rally Project
'58 Type 1 - I bought an early!?!
'73 Type 1 - Proper Germanlook project
'68 Type 1 - Interm German 'look' project
'75 Type 1 - Family Heirloom
'93 Chevy 3500 pickup - Cummins Swap
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old December 26th 2009, 21:33
owdlvr's Avatar
owdlvr owdlvr is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Canada - West Coast
Posts: 794
Minor update...took it out for a spin on the new wheels. Have to sort out a conflict between the wheels and sway bar (removed the bar for the moment), and also need to re-bleed the brakes.





-Dave
__________________
'71 Type 1 - Rally Project
'58 Type 1 - I bought an early!?!
'73 Type 1 - Proper Germanlook project
'68 Type 1 - Interm German 'look' project
'75 Type 1 - Family Heirloom
'93 Chevy 3500 pickup - Cummins Swap
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old December 27th 2009, 06:14
Wally's Avatar
Wally Wally is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: The Netherlands
Posts: 2,542
Nice!
Like Oasis said, don't mind the style issue, most don't realize the sleeper/stealth look that your car has to some point, is more german-style than you'd think
__________________
'75 Super.
...because race car!
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old December 30th 2009, 02:44
owdlvr's Avatar
owdlvr owdlvr is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Canada - West Coast
Posts: 794
Well, I can handle those quad tips no longer! Off they came last night, in a flurry of sparks from the angle grinder. Mind you, it does create for me a rather unique issue as far as what to do in their place, but I think I've got it sorted.

I picked up a couple of Vibrant 1.5" mandrel bends, and dug out some tips from when I used to work there. This is just a photoshop, but the eventual plan for the exhaust. I need to visit a buddy with a plasma cutter to modify the tips before I can weld it all together. Looks like I'll need to shorten them by about a 1/2" and then set them up for a side inlet. The flow won't be ideal, but I'll take that over the quad-tip shin wrecker!



-Dave
__________________
'71 Type 1 - Rally Project
'58 Type 1 - I bought an early!?!
'73 Type 1 - Proper Germanlook project
'68 Type 1 - Interm German 'look' project
'75 Type 1 - Family Heirloom
'93 Chevy 3500 pickup - Cummins Swap
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old December 30th 2009, 23:58
cookvw's Avatar
cookvw cookvw is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Durango, coloRADo, USA
Posts: 222
love the new exaust idea. also with the shifter...i also have access to a lathe and mill, and the meterals i can get easy. i would love to mechine one up for myself just for the experience. right now i have a scat dragfast shifter that is angled (hate that) so im going to see what it will take to make a round strait angled one on a lathe and make it work with the dragfast base. i also want to make a better reverse lock out mec cause i HATE the T handle shift knob so ill be using a handle much like yours on your shifter and ill also make the handle longer for easy reach for them quick shifts. well thanks again for all the info.

i also love that you posted about the beetleball racing... iwent to their site, and (if my car is done in time) me and my roomate want to do the race from cali to vegas.... soo cool that someone put something like this togather for us VW gearheads! well keep up the good work.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old January 4th 2010, 03:33
owdlvr's Avatar
owdlvr owdlvr is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Canada - West Coast
Posts: 794
Got around to a few more upgrades on the bug. Finished the exhaust tip install, which was a bit of a bear. Welding upside down sucks, but I didn't feel like pulling the motor. Filling 1/4" gaps with weld, while doing it upside down, really sucks. But the end result makes me happy, so it's all good!







They stick out a little further then I was hoping for, but it was either mount them as is, or cut the tips to shorten them. It's a double wall design, which makes it difficult, and you'd be able to see the seam lines...so I left them as is.

Looks like it's running a little rich too! Guess I'll be doing a carb adjustment this week :P

Had to toss the car back on the stock wheels. The track tires are just a little bald, and now the two front wheels need to be re-coated. They rub the very end of the sway bar while turning, and I tore up the powder coating just moving the car in and out of the garage. Not sure what I'm going to do to solve this problem yet, I'm not happy with the option of removing the sway bar and I don't think shortening the ends is going to help any. I was planning on swapping the front bar anyways, so did pull it off and I can drive the car no problem...without the bar. So now I just need to figure out how I'm going to work the bar into the equation.




While the car was in the garage I also reupholstered the seats using the near-mint stuff from the '72. It's sort of weird having padding instead of springs to sit on!

Definitely looking for thoughts on what I can do front suspension wise though...

-Dave
__________________
'71 Type 1 - Rally Project
'58 Type 1 - I bought an early!?!
'73 Type 1 - Proper Germanlook project
'68 Type 1 - Interm German 'look' project
'75 Type 1 - Family Heirloom
'93 Chevy 3500 pickup - Cummins Swap
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old January 4th 2010, 13:14
NO_H2O's Avatar
NO_H2O NO_H2O is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Stockbridge, GA.
Posts: 2,810
you could adjust the steering stops just short of the wheel contacting the sway bar. It would cut dow on your turning radius but would not foul the wheels.
__________________
NO_H2O
72 1302 Smack Black GL
73 Bus (2L CIS Powered)
66 Beetle, 73 Standard Beetle
72 Pinzgauer 710M
Volksport Kafer Gruppe
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 21:11.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
© www.GermanLook.net 2002-2017. All Rights Reserved