View Full Version : My Buggy Build Update (Lots-o-Pictures)

3 Phase Lightbulb
10-04-2005, 01:53 AM
I've been working like crazy on my Buggy lately. Here are some recent pictures I took tonight:

Here are a set of 8 A-Arm brackets I finished making on my Bridgeport:


Here is one upper A-Arm with my new brackets:


Here is one upper A-Arm with the new brackets installed:


Here is one upper A-Arm test-fited to the upper frame member:



3 Phase Lightbulb
10-04-2005, 01:54 AM
Here Are some pictures of the front end in mock-up stages:







3 Phase Lightbulb
10-04-2005, 01:54 AM
Here are some pictures of the completed rear drive unit. I still have to make a 1/4" Keyway on each stub-axle, but they are complete now. I turned down the diff'd bearing seats on my lathe to exactly 1.5" OD and bought a new set of flange bearings with 2" wide 1.5" ID, and I installed a pair of roller needle bearings inside each flange bearing (1.5" OD, 1" ID) which support the 1" OD stub axles. It's a rock solid unit now ready for more power and torque than I'll ever throw at it:






Doc Nickel
10-04-2005, 02:33 AM
Just a mockup? So those aren't structural Gatorade bottles? http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

Looks great so far, but I'd fab a cover of some kind for that diff, to keep gunk out of the spider gears.


3 Phase Lightbulb
10-04-2005, 02:44 AM
Yup, I'm going to weld up a nice sealed alum housing that slips over the diff. I'll make that soon. Since there is no Ring/Pinion that need constant lubricant, I only need to keep the inside of the diff lightly oiled. Nothing moves inside the differential except when it's providing differential speeds so I'll just lightly oil it inside before sealing it up. There are some holes on the side that I might braze closed but I'm not sure if brazing will work ..... We'll see.


10-04-2005, 03:39 AM
No doubt about it Adrian,you are a clever fellow! http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif.And who would have thought of building it up on the bench,much easier on your back.I just hope you have a good size crane to lift it off when you're done.Excellent workmanship!


Your Old Dog
10-04-2005, 07:20 AM
Ambitious looking project there 3phase! Nice work. I thought it was mostly done with smoke and mirriors, was surprised to see such a serious role played by Gatoraide http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

10-04-2005, 09:21 AM
Nice work!! I always knew there was a good use for empty gatoraid bottles http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif. Can't wait to see this one run, should be a blast.


Jim Koper
J&R Machining

10-04-2005, 10:15 AM
Sweet! You're making some real progress!

10-04-2005, 10:54 AM
Very COOL!!! Thanks for posting some new pics.

3 Phase Lightbulb
10-04-2005, 11:13 AM
Thanks for all of the kind words folks! I've been having so much fun building it, I'm not even really looking forward to playing with it. I'm sure once the projects nears completion I'll start getting anxious, but the rewards of building it are much higher than I originally expected.


10-04-2005, 01:38 PM
3PH, looks like a great machine, Thanks for the photos. Just one comment, Have you noticed that all of your pipe is upside down? http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//wink.gif Hope it doesn’t have any effect on the structural strength.

10-04-2005, 08:13 PM
You might want to put a pipe plug in that diff cover. Those clutch discs generate some crap and you will want to add some lube every now and then.

10-04-2005, 08:23 PM
Dang! I think even I'm beginning to like it. I better go out and get me a case of Gatorade and get busy. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

Just one question/comment: How will you fine tune the alignment? I don't see any adjustments for caster, camber, toe. Not that it matters too much on an off-road but you don't want it "crabbing" on the trails. Might take away from control.

10-04-2005, 08:25 PM
I thinks its a torsen...no discs, just gears. Id still put a plug in it however....

10-04-2005, 08:40 PM
Got more frame under that thing than most the 4wd jap trucks.

The lil ranger had a sheet metal front axle housing I looked under.

The frame looks way tooo strong, what kind of power plant are you putting in?

Ever thought of using a front wheel drive car in the rear, as a pusher.
I saw that 3wheeler made from a honda sedan again around town. GUY is ear to ear smiles. Looks like crap, but it looks fun. He just welded a jap front bike frame section where the bumper went to the car. Headlights shine on either side of the bike frame.

3 Phase Lightbulb
10-04-2005, 08:43 PM
The rear end is a torsen so there are just gears inside. There are no clutches or friction modifers needed.

CCWKen, my spindles (Haven't built them yet) will have about 10 degs of caster and about 8 degs of kingpin inclination. I need to work out my steering arm first and try to eliminate bump steer, then I'll fine tune the caster/inclination angle. I haven't decided if I want any toe in/out and I don't think I'll add any built in camber angle.


10-04-2005, 08:44 PM
Very nice! What size and type of engine are you planning on running? I've been making go-karts for a long time and have slowly progressed from clutch to sprocket type drive systems to transaxles with bigger engines. Still not fast enough or loud enough, though. Of course i've got a money problem, all my engines and parts come from what other people decide to throw away...anyway i was thinking about getting into off-road buggies or bandelero karts. I was thinking about making something around a nitromethane v-twin, only problem is the cash! What kind of engines do you use and where do you get them from?

10-04-2005, 08:52 PM
Are your upper and lower control arms the same length? If so, you might want to do some research on front end geometry. I'm not trying to be smart , just helpful.

3 Phase Lightbulb
10-04-2005, 09:03 PM
Fasttrack, I'm using a '83 GSX750cc engine (~80 HP). If you're into building gokarts, you'll probably like my PsychoKart Webpage (http://www.psychokart.com). It's powered with a GS750cc engine. Here is a PsychoKart Video (720x480 23mb) (http://www.psychokart.com/videos/psychokart_video_high.wmv)

Kirk, I initially had shorter upper A-Arms (They are on my bench somewhere), but my travel is excessive and equal length A-Arms are the only way I can get full suspension travel without getting excessive camber angles at the neutral point. Here is a picture of the shorter A-Arms before I realized my travel was too much for them: http://www.bbssystem.com/buggy/frontend2.jpg


10-04-2005, 09:13 PM
Lol! your my hero! :-) What kind of top speed you think that thing can pull? How about acceleration?

3 Phase Lightbulb
10-04-2005, 10:57 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Fasttrack:
Lol! your my hero! :-) What kind of top speed you think that thing can pull? How about acceleration?</font>

I've only ridden my PsychoKart a few times in my yard. I tried to accelerate on the pavement but it hurts because it grips like crazy and the seat digs into my back. If I wanted to do anything serious with it, I'd install a better form fitted seat instead of that fiberglass seat.

The buggy should be a blast and extreamly confortable. I'm installing a Geo Metro driver's seat so there won't be any issues going fast in that.


10-04-2005, 11:35 PM
With a roll cage and 5-point too, I hope. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//eek.gif

3 Phase Lightbulb
10-05-2005, 02:59 AM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by CCWKen:
With a roll cage and 5-point too, I hope. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//eek.gif</font>

Absoutly.. Right now I just have a Geo Metro adjustable seat with the factory belt, but I'll probably see about getting a real race seat and harness if all of the testing goes well. I don't want to dump a lot of money into saftey equipment if I'm not going to be riding it like a Psycho.

I do plan on rolling it, building large jumps for it, stunt riding on two wheels (the left front and the left rear, etc.

I finished both sets of A-Arms tonight. Now I have to build the coil-over-spring mounts and calculate my travel bumpstop limits,etc.

I should have the front knuckles, wheel hubs, and front disc brakes installed by this weekend.


10-05-2005, 03:15 AM
http://eibach.com/cgi-bin/htmlos.exe/00839.1.3321755729800026512 I don't know if this will help any. Being an engineer you probably already know it. With rod end bearings on each end of the upper a arms you could adjust camber on the front. use a jam nut to lock the ajustment.

10-05-2005, 03:21 AM
similar to this


10-06-2005, 05:24 PM
Hey Threephase, if you ever decide to sell your pyschokart let me know! I would be glad to buy it! http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

3 Phase Lightbulb
10-06-2005, 05:37 PM
Claw, I was originally going to use rod ends, but I really wanted to TIG weld up my A-Arms with pivot bushings because I thought that would be a lot of fun and I enjoy welding. Well, it was fun but I'll use adjustable rod ends on the next one I build. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

Fasttrack, are you in the Boston area? I'm about 20 minutes north of Boston. I'd rather trade it for something nifty in return if you've got something? I'll sell it but I won't include the drive chain for legal concerns.


3 Phase Lightbulb
10-07-2005, 12:54 AM
I built the lower A-Arm shock mounts tonight.

Notched all of the 3/4" pipe:


Test fit the top and parallel mounts inside the lower A-Arms:


A pair of parallels help mockup the multi-hole mounts I'll weld to the parallel mounts for adjustable shock positions along the lower A-Arms:


Front view:


This weekend I'll weld up the shock mounts, fabricate the shock upper mounts, and start working on building my knuckles and spindles.


10-07-2005, 03:20 AM
adrian, Just making an opinion on helping front end grip. with the majority of the weight (engine, driver) towards the rear the front may not "bite" as much. I fully understand about the TIG welding. Its WAY fun and enjoyable.

10-07-2005, 06:33 AM
I wasn't aware Gatoraid had caffine!

The tame Wolf !

10-07-2005, 09:59 AM
I guesstimate the finished weight in around 1200lbs.. closest person to actual weight gets a cigar..

WHo wants in on the bet?


10-07-2005, 10:09 AM
I'm in. Full of fuel ready to go, 998 lbs.

3 Phase Lightbulb
10-07-2005, 11:26 AM
It will definitely be less than 1000lbs otherwise I'll hack it up until it is because I want to register this as an ATV so I can ride it in designated ATV State parks in MA. The limit on an ATV in MA is 1000lbs.

I'm thinking around 850lbs.


10-07-2005, 11:45 AM
Formula SAE cars of similar construction, using a Honda F4i engine typically come in at around 400-500 lbs. Adrian's buggy is likely bigger than that, and he's not paying as much attention to weight, so my guess would be 650 lb. I'd be surprised if it were much more, unless he's building it real beefy like.


10-07-2005, 11:47 AM
Id guess at approximately 780 pounds. Is it similiar to the australian buggy called the sidewinder.

10-07-2005, 12:41 PM
Less than 750lbs. Heck my 911 only weighs 1900lbs. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

-Christian D. Sokolowski

3 Phase Lightbulb
10-07-2005, 12:54 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by rsr911:
Less than 750lbs. Heck my 911 only weighs 1900lbs. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif


In the rear I'm using Porsche 924/944 CV joints/axles and 944 stub axles w/944 5 lug wheel hubs. I'm building my own rear wheel bearing carrier and my own multi-link suspension though. So from the wheels up to the differential is Porsche 924/944 parts, and the differential is GM 7.5/7.625 Torsen locker.


10-07-2005, 09:11 PM
My Kenbota weighs about 1300lbs. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//frown.gif
Of course I don't race it around the farm. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

3 Phase Lightbulb
10-08-2005, 12:14 AM
Here is a little video of the lower A-Arm shock travel without the spring installed. I'm getting around 17" of travel from the bottom-out position to the full extension:


I'm going to have to make some big jumps I think http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif


10-08-2005, 04:57 PM

The 924/944 stuff should be plenty strong for what you're doing but in the event that they aren't you might look at 930 turbo CV's.

-Christian D. Sokolowski

10-14-2005, 11:45 PM
I noticed it looks like you have a shifter kart set-up on the psychokart. I was wondering what type of running gear it is and where you got it...is it from a shifter kart or something else? I have been looking for shifter kart transmissions and have a real devil of a time finding any! Man that is really cool though!

3 Phase Lightbulb
10-18-2005, 01:25 AM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Fasttrack:
I noticed it looks like you have a shifter kart set-up on the psychokart. I was wondering what type of running gear it is and where you got it...is it from a shifter kart or something else? I have been looking for shifter kart transmissions and have a real devil of a time finding any! Man that is really cool though!</font>

My PsychoKart uses the GS750's 5-speed constant mesh transmission, and clutch. I don't have a seperate transmission. I built a floor-type of shifter that has linkage running back to the motorcycle's foot shifter which I modified to accept the floor shifter's linkage:


The floor shifter attaches to a modified foot shifer lever: