Saturday, September 29, 2007

Widening the wheelarch and welding rust spots

Even when the car isn't supposed to be outside for long, we built a shelter for the car in case of autumn rains.

We also began widening the front wheel arches so we can fit wide wheels on the car. The same will also be done in the rear, but in the rear we also have to take into account the sliding side door that will interfere with the wider rear wheels.

Almost all rust spots are welded and we're also supposed to paint the car in the next few weeks. Looking good.

Seems like we will weigh the car after we have the car painted. We have to lend the scales to weigh the car, so getting them always takes effort.

Mika welding a repair piece on a rust spot.

The repaired rust spot and beginning to widen the wheel arch.

Widening the wheel arch.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Preparing for paint

We got the roof and hard to reach places in the underbody painted, so we could put the car back on all four. Lightening the car and making the weightlist also continued

Walk through option -11.8kg (the car didn't come with this option, so we removed the inside wall)
Half of the front bumper internal 9.2kg
Side door without window and interior 23.0kg

The car is also almost ready for painting, and this weekend we are going to weigh the car, engine and transmission (the heavy parts that we couldn't weigh on a person scale). We are also going to weigh two other T3 buses, so we get a good idea of the baseline weight.

The interior looks quite spacious with the walk through option, reminds of a train.

The front bumper, made from ~2mm steel.

Testseat in!

The car looked silly when in stock height so we had to lower it just a bit

Monday, September 17, 2007

The Project begins

The project started about a week ago by cleaning all the rust spots and doing the metal work. The interior and other parts that are in the way of repainting the car were removed. We also began lightening the car by removing the floor that will later be covered with aluminium. Measuring the weight of of the car's parts has also begun so we get an better idea where we should lighten the car and how much each part will be lightened.

The dash 7kg (only the dash panel, no instruments, adjustments or knobs on it)
Windscreen 15kg
Side windows 5kg each
Plastic engine cover 7kg
Rear door with window 25kg
Front door with window(s) and interior 27kg each

It's not hard to imagine anymore where the weight of the car comes from...

At the starting point

One of the few rust spots on the car, the car had rusted through in the middle of the side, and on both sides of the seam.

The lightened floor.

The under body from the other side.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


We are building a bus for the Summer 2008 for race track use mainly in Finland. The basis for the car is a Volkswagen Transporter 80-92 (T3 or Vanagon, however you call them), the last of the rear wheel drive ones. We will do a turbocharged Subaru conversion, and modify the suspension and brakes to cope with track day abuse. The car will also be lightened and equipped with a FIA approved roll cage and six racing seats.

The car will be street legal, and getting the approvals for a bigger engine in Finland will be a part of this project. Getting the needed documentation for it has been a huge struggle this far, but failing isn't an option. Failing would mean that we would have to sell all the T3 VW's we've got this far, because who wants to drive one of these with a stock engine?

These are the design specifications that were decided when we decided to begin building this car. First year will be spent testing, making the car reliable and making it handle well, in the next years we will have time to go crazy modifying it.

Also check our previous projects: Bogeyracing Locost Yamaha R1 and Porsche 914 RS

Design specs:

VW Transporter T3

Rear engine, rear wheel drive

Subaru EJ20T, turbocharged, intercooled, wet sump oil system

2.1 liter 5 speed with limited slip differential
RJES bell housing kit

Independent front and rear suspension, coil overs in the front and the rear, adjustable sway bars

Hydraulic, dual circuit, power assisted, ventilated discs front and rear

Power assisted rack and pinion, 2 times quicker than stock





Other features:
FIA approved roll cage, 6 FIA approved seats (5 passengers), 6 point FIA safety harnesses, road legal

These were the design specs, and it will be fun to see how the real specifications turn out compared to the ones written before the build even started!

From right to left: Race Taxi, Henrik's 1990 Caravelle, Mika's Multivan and Mikas SuperBay.