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Old April 20th, 2014, 04:42 AM   #1
uglydog56
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Default Front engine volksrod

Finally getting started, here are the before pics.

Last edited by uglydog56; May 30th, 2014 at 02:47 PM. Reason: fixed broken links
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Old April 20th, 2014, 02:45 PM   #2
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First mockup.
Can you see the volksrod in this picture?

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Old April 22nd, 2014, 04:14 PM   #3
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Wheelbase looks like 115-116". It's going to be snug everywhere though to fit everything inside. I may have to run the clutch fork inside the passenger compartment to have room for a gas pedal. I see why so many street rods have automatic transmissions.

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Old April 28th, 2014, 03:04 PM   #4
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Got the basic frame knocked together this weekend.

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Old April 28th, 2014, 03:11 PM   #5
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Front suspension is going to be a quarter elliptical four bar cross steer. Rear will be torque arm with quarter ellipticals. I'm not planning on running panhard bars at either end, but I have heard you should with cross steer and torque arms. I think the springs will locate the axles just fine. We will see.

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Old May 2nd, 2014, 06:31 PM   #6
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Refilled my gas bottles and cut the old brackets off my rear axle, an 8.8 ford out of a 95 explorer. No pics, as you all know what torch and grinder marks look like on this site. Disassembled and drilled my front axle in preparation for new kingpins and disc brakes.

I'm not sure I like it. When I dress the holes I think they will look a little more even. Oh well. It's mostly hidden under the track nose anyhow.

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Old May 2nd, 2014, 06:40 PM   #7
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I also mounted the steering box. It is a 525 steering box, the casting numbers show late 60's gm. I still have to weld the backsides. I'm not going to contour and trim these yet. I still have to build quarter elliptical spring mounts and lever shock mounts over here yet, and I don't know what is going to tie into what. I'll pretty it up with the cutoff wheel and grinder later. I amnot leaving that pitman arm like that; I'm replacing it with a 2" longer flat one, and it will be installed 180 out from this one.

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Old May 3rd, 2014, 08:27 AM   #8
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Set the body back on so I could build the roll cage. Profile looks good I think:
The engine is set back a little further than I thought it was going to be, but I like it so it stays. I also don't want to add any more wheelbase.

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Old May 3rd, 2014, 07:14 PM   #9
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Got the brake & clutch pedals in. The assembly is from a 69 chevy pickup I think; it says 69c on it in boneyard paint pen. I have no idea where I got it. I found it while unpacking. The steering column bolted up to it exactly. How odd is that?

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Old May 9th, 2014, 06:34 PM   #10
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No pics, today I dropped off my axle to get the kingpins done and the adapter pieces pressed on for the disc brakes. I pieced together my brake kit. I started with a bracket kit from speedway motors. I upgraded to afco "big bore" calipers and drilled/slotted rotors. I wanted wilwoods, but I wanted domestic harmony even more.

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Old May 10th, 2014, 11:57 AM   #11
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Welding in a rollcage is a little more involved than you might think. I don't really plan on racing this thing, but you should still follow the guidelines. The hard part is making the second side look like the first, and still having appropriate sizes gaps for welding.

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Old May 11th, 2014, 01:22 PM   #12
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Had to spend some time with wife and mother this weekend. But I got the halo and a-pillar bars in. Also the dash bar and the front struts. Due to the clutch linkage and different locations for motor mounts on the engine, nothing is at all symmetrical. But that's okay with me, especially since I don't really have a choice :-) Got the clutch and steering column mounts in as well.

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Old May 11th, 2014, 01:26 PM   #13
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Front end. I think I might need to triangulate a little more up here.

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Old May 11th, 2014, 04:32 PM   #14
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I have the side bars and cross bar tacked in. I just found out that flux core is not permitted for nhra, so I'm just tacking until I get a bottle of gas on Friday. Then I will lift the body back off and finish weld everything. Seat is a Dodge A100 bucket. It should fit, barely.

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Old May 17th, 2014, 05:41 PM   #15
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Argh!

Not much progress to report. I picked up a gas bottle and started welding mig instead of flux core. My welds instantly turned to pigshit, which people in the know will tell you is the stinkiest of all shits. I could not seem to get adequate penetration (insert dirty joke here). I had to do a lot of grinding and rewelding this weekend. I'm still not happy with it.

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Old May 25th, 2014, 06:56 PM   #16
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Only one pic to add today : I've been looking for an engine for my truck on clist. They all ran when parked. In a lake. In other news, I figured out my welder, and my welds have improved markedly. They have to be super clean, you have to gap or bevel, and you have to be fast, but not too fast. I also practiced a little on Friday: The welds looked good and the horses didn't fall out on Saturday, so that's a win.

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Old May 25th, 2014, 07:09 PM   #17
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Today I've been staring at the back of the car, mentally laying out suspension. My original plan was for a torque arm suspension with the quarter elliptical springs as the trailing arms. But I read on the HAMB (the samba of domestic hot rods) about a guy with actual horsepower that did that, and shoved the driveshaft in the transmission so hard it ruined the crankshaft thrust. Wow. So I chickened out and ordered some heim joints. The plan is now quarter elliptical springs with bridged shackles, trailing arms with heims directly above the springs, and delco hydraulic double action lever shocks immediately inboard. I have to keep this compact so I can fit the turbo on the left side and the battery on the right side between the body and the axle. I started cutting brackets, but the neighbors complained about the racket, and since the neighbors are my convalescing mother and my sister who is taking car of her, I had to actually stop. So, pics tomorrow of a tacked together rear suspension. Enjoy your memorial day!

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Old May 26th, 2014, 04:32 PM   #18
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Wasn't feeling good today, so I didn't get as much done as I'd hoped. I wish I had been drinking so I would have at least earned it. I did get my axle brackets cut and the left side mount installed. Here are the axle brackets: You use a holesaw the diameter of your axle tube (3 1/4" in this case) and cut them in half and voila. Here are pics of left side bracket. Lots of mental work here for how simple it looks. Shock is from 50 buick. Spring is a trailer spring from northern tool with the end cut off.

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Old June 6th, 2014, 11:23 AM   #19
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Last weekend I went to my son's high school graduation, which was pretty exciting because a couple years ago I thought I would be visiting him in prison by this time. He's talking about enrolling in a culinary program and becoming a chef! In other news my front axle still isn't done, machinists around here are really starting to get on my nerve. But, on to real work!
I believe a hot rod looks so much cooler with a lever shock. But, I still want to drive my car in a spirited manner. The compromise is a hydraulic lever shock. Mine are delcos. The rears are a 50 buick rear and my fronts are a 50 olds rear. Armstrong shocks off an mg are a good choice too. It just depends on what you find. I somehow ended up with 2 lefts in the back and 2 rights in the front. So I shipped them off to get a couple of arms swapped, and to flip the fronts so they will attach to the axle as far outboard as possible. This should make them more effective. Now I'm off to finish the right rear suspension mount.

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Old August 16th, 2014, 09:13 AM   #20
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Been a while since I have worked on the goldilocks bug, but today I got back in the garage. I FINALLY got my axle back from the machine shop, after paying the "don't come back" price 😠 so I won't be. I got painted up and assembled, so I slid it under the car. I like the stance so far:
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Old August 17th, 2014, 05:54 PM   #21
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Worked on finishing the rear suspension today. It's a good thing I decided to put links on the suspension. It turns out the the trailing arm placement is critical to building proper antisquat. If I had used the quarter elliptical springs as trailing arms, every time I adjusted ride height, it would have messed with the handling. The car would have been so unpredictable. Thank goodness for the internet! The torque arm height doesn't really matter, just the length (shorter is more antisquat). I built everything for 109% antisquat, which is typically a good target for a drag style suspension. I put a second hole on the axle brackets for 60% antisquat, which seems to be the preferred number for autocross type events. I have to actually cut and weld the trailing arms, then the rear will be suspended!
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Old August 25th, 2014, 05:46 PM   #22
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Default Re: Front engine volksrod

Well, I received a small but extremely irritating setback. In case you didn't realize it, a VW bug is a somewhat smaller car. Getting everything to fit is somewhat of a challenge. I ended up with trailing arms that are 12.5" long. They're also slanted down slightly to keep the anti-squat at a reasonable level. This means there's a fair amount of forward/aft movement when the suspension moves up/down, especially forward. Not ideal but something I'll have to live with. The big problem is that when you raise one wheel, there's only about 1 1/2" of upward travel before the tire rubs the body. My rear tires are already about an inch rearward of stock, any further back will look funny. My spring/shock/trailing arm bracket is already only 1" from the main rollbar hoop. The main hoop can't go any further forward, because I'm already as tight as I can go to the brake/clutch pedals.

It looks like the solution is either 1" or wider wheel spacers (which I don't particularly want to run as they are not legal for just about anything) or a wider axle. I'm considering a Crown Victoria rearend, so I can reuse my 8.8 parts. This gives me 2.25" of extra width per side. The fringe benefit here, is that I could also score a pair of factory crown vic rear wheels, which are 16x7". They are offset more to the inside than my current rims This would allow me to put 245/75-16's or 235/85-16's on the back, which I think would improve the car's profile while still having a readily available tire. The downside is, most of them are 28 spline (25% weaker). The caveat here is that my 31 spline posi carrier and disc brakes will swap right in, and 2005-up 31 spline axles are also a direct swap, which could be procured later. So I might just find one cheap, get it installed, and worry about posi, etc. later. It just depends on what Craigslist will provide. Decisions, decisions!

Last edited by uglydog56; August 25th, 2014 at 05:48 PM. Reason: clarity
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Old October 16th, 2014, 04:39 PM   #23
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Default Re: Front engine volksrod

Quick update time. I've had to back off on the goldilocks bug because my pickup required a new engine. Of course, I can't do anything without fiddling and diddling with it, so I'm putting a turbo and fuel injection on the new engine. I should pull the horse trailer or car trailer real nice. Just waiting on my cam guy to send me the cam, then it's going in.

On the car front, I finally found a wider rear axle. It came out of a 2001 Mercury Grand Marquis. It measured an immense 65 5/8" wide. With my existing 15x7 wheels and 235/75-15's, it just looked goofy. The tires stuck way out in space, and looked tiny. So I picked up some wore out 265/75-16 freebie tires, mocked them up, and it looks great. I did need wheels with more backspace, because the rear was just too wide. So I got some cheap 16x8's with 4.5" backspace. I'm getting the tires mounted tomorrow. Profile pics to follow.
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Old December 23rd, 2014, 08:58 AM   #24
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Default Re: Front engine volksrod

Merry Christmas everyone! Been off the bug for a little while. Work has been requiring a few weekends, plus I have been concentrating on getting my pickup back together. Here is that engine, should pull a trailer nicely:

It goes in over Christmas break, then back to the goldybug!
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