Hey guys, new member here

I'm not sure where to post this so figured the anything goes topic would be okay. Anyways, Im looking for build threads. I've google'd and surprisingly come up with nothing. Subie powered build threads would even be better but I'd like to read and learn all I can.  I've owned/restored/customized aircooled VWs my whole life (mostly pre-67s) but have always wanted a speedster, so here I am planning my next build.  If you all could point me in the right direction I'd greatly appreciate it

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Not a subie powered build, but @*LongFella has a pretty thorough and recent build thread for a Speedster.  While I unfortunately haven't seen his speedster in person, he's very detailed and his speedster looks amazing.  @TRP's thread is quite inspiring as well.  Not a ground-up build per se, but incredibly detailed.  Also not subie powered.  @edsnova has been doing a new build on his spyder, which has been an amazing build and very detailed as well.  I'm sure I'm leaving out a few member's builds (not intentional).  But I've found all three of these members' threads to be VERY inspiring.  They've motivated me to do yuge projects on my speedster, like add horn grill gaskets and adjust my bumpers. HAHAHA  

ExtremeBean posted:

I'm not sure where to post this so figured the anything goes topic would be okay. Anyways, Im looking for build threads. I've google'd and surprisingly come up with nothing. Subie powered build threads would even be better but I'd like to read and learn all I can.  I've owned/restored/customized aircooled VWs my whole life (mostly pre-67s) but have always wanted a speedster, so here I am planning my next build.  If you all could point me in the right direction I'd greatly appreciate it

 Here's a Soob Frankenmotor I did a couple of years ago in my older IM. It works fine. Plenty of miles on it too. Ford crank fired EDIS ignition, Megajolt controller, Single Weber 32/36 mid mount carb, Thunderbird wires with flood control grommets and a Saab 9000 rad up front. Ugly some may say, but I've got more mileage than them...... -: )

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Not a Speedster, but harder: I put an EJ22 in my MG replica a few years ago and documented it here. Browse around the blog and you'll see.

There was also a great thread on the Samba from some dude in Australia who did his own wiring harness on his Suby Bug. If you're going to use a stock ECU, I recommend Tom Shiels over diy. 

Let me be the first to Welcome You to the Madness, Extreme Bean (do you have a first name or are we forever going to call you by your screen name?). Seriously thinking of Subaru power or are you a big modified type 1 guy? Swing or irs? Drums or discs? Factory looking (all trim, bumper overriders, close to stock height) or more of an outlaw (no trim, seriously lowered, maybe even Carrera louvers in the engine lid) theme? Stock wheels with hubcaps, wide 5's, Porsche alloys, or? Street racer, canyon carver, ice cream getter or something in-between?

And it's like the Berg 5 is just made these cars. Just sayin'

Again, welcome to the group. My name is Al

I'll second the Tom Shiels wiring harness route. I know a Vanagon Synchro Westy owner who succesfully used the purchased harness in his 2.2 conversion.

Usually, you send the factory harness and ECU. Tom builds the harness and tests it on an actual engine before shipping back to you.

Oh man.  You guys are tough.  The good Bean is here for less than a day and we're already throwing him into the deep end with talk of the 5 speed. 

Alan has built more speedsters than any single person on the board. I think he's built more than SAS. (too soon?)  He'd be a good brain to pick. Theron has done his fair share of partial builds/flips.  Troy has cornered the market on Vintage refurbs. 

Mango set the bar for individual builds.  Brian comes in second with his blue speedster and his coupe.  My thread is really only good if you want to see someone do the same thing two or three times.   It's good if you want to watch someone slowly slip into insanity across 34 pages of ramblings. I think I upgraded motors 4 times in 2 years?  I'm on my third trans-axle. Third set of front brakes.  

Maybe we should rename my thread "Buy Once. Cry Once." ?

How about Shiela, or whatever, in So Africa?  Now THAT was/is a special build.  Need to find that thread . . .  I hope Ol' Bean there isn't sorry he asked.  Over here at SOC, it will be like drinking from a fire hose.  Once he settles in on how he wants to go, he can find all he needs and more here, pretty much free for the asking.

And Bean: if/when you get started, we will DEMAND pictures.  If no pictures, then it didn't happen.  Just sayin' . . .

Thanks for all the responses guys! Much appreciated.  To answer a few questions, my name is Jason.  Im almost 40 and have wanted this car for about 30 years now.  Growing up in So Cal in the 80s my father (both of them lol) were heavily into the vw scene and my mom drove a 912 so Ive always grown up being a vw/porsche guy. This just seems like a natural choice.  Im not really too concerned with the vw aspect of it as Ive been wrenching on them for a couple decades now.  But I do have tons of porsche (kit) specific questions and something I know nothing about but am learning is the Subaru powered stuff.  Im choosing that route for now as it's just more practical I think yet still keeps it a flat four and somewhat "in the family".  This car will be a daily driver for a couple of the nice months of the year here in AZ so reliability is a must.  I think it's (at least in theory anyways) easier/better/cheaper to just drop in a stock ej25 and have 165hp than spending say $5,000 and building a monster 2110, 2180, etc. when I can buy a low mileage donor for $2,000.  

Im planning on an original look with full trim, mildly lowered (which is another question I have off the top) Do you guys just use dropped spindles or what? Narrow the beam at all? Silver with red interior.  Probably 5 wides with the nipple hubcaps.  I love fuchs on a bug just not totally convinced they go right with a 356.

Anyways, finding this forum is just my initial research so hopefully I'll be here for while until my build is done and thereafter.

Although Im not 100% decided yet I've attached a pic of the look I have in my head. Thanks again for the info and warm welcome!

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Thats Tom's car! Gentle Giant. First SOC guy face to face. Met him at the happy hour in SLO the year Jimmy cracked up his silver vintage.  I met all the other riff raff on line first. Great bunch. 

Narrowed beam would be a step backwards for a speedster. The wheels can already hit on the inner fender wells if you turn sharp.

$5000.00 for a 2180 is old school prices.   

Welcome to the fun house.

If you do the install yourself and pick a nice junkyard Suby (preferably in a running Subaru) you can save a few bucks over a CB Perf 2110. But not by all that much. The reason to do it is the reliability and maintenance breaks you'll get once it's sorted. 

The EJ25 is a pretty good engine but a lot of folks here prefer the 2-cam version to the 4-cam. Setting up the timing belt in the 4 cam is a bit tricky, and these engines all tend to have weak head gaskets; last word I heard was that the 2-cam ones were a bit less likely to blow antifreeze. 

Best is to get the engine, pull the pan and check the innards. These cases are usually very nice inside. Install the Small Car oil pan, replace the oil-air separator if needed, and do the oil pump if the car has more than 100k on it. 

Then replace the water pump—use a Subaru part, not an aftermarket one. Pull the heads and have them hot-tanked and checked, and maybe decked. If the engine is young and wasn't beat on (which most NA cars weren't) you won't need a valve job. 

Reinstall with new head gaskets and new head bolts. The old ones are fine—they look fine and work fine; they're totally reusable—but the book says spend $85 on new Subaru bolts and so do it anyway. Wait til you get a load of the head torque spec!

You may want to turn the water inlet backwards to point the business end at the front of the car, where your radiator will be. I didn't do it but probably should have.

You'll also get a new thermostat, also at great expense, from the Subaru dealer and not from NAPA. 

With all those things done you'll be ready to rock on for another 200,000 miles.

If you get any flavor of Subaru engine you will have no need at all for a Berg 5 Speed. Those boxes are for high-strung Type 1 engines with peaky torque curves.* Your stock (or Franken'd) EJ2x has an anvil-shaped torque curve, like a High Plains mesa in the middle distance. Sacred Ground. 

*(or high-strung drivers with cheeky attitudes).

I'm going to beg to differ here, Ed. A 4 cam isn't necessarily that much harder. All the motors are interference after the 2.2 anyway. There are tools you can rent that hold the cams in place when swapping the belt. Or have a buddy help you. Only one wants to move anyway. So to me, 2 or 4 cam doesn't matter. It may for fitment in the engine bay however.

And as to head gaskets: DO NOT I REPEAT DO NOT install Subaru gaskets. They suck and will leak somewhere after 60k. Buy Felpro, and spray both sides with copper gasket spray. If you do this, new bolts are not necessary. 

This last paragraph will save you time and money in the future. Oh yeah, use Subaru compatible coolant, that helps as well.

"I'm planning on an original look with full trim, mildly lowered (which is another question I have off the top) Do you guys just use dropped spindles or what? Narrow the beam at all? Silver with red interior. Probably 5 wides with the nipple hubcaps. I love fuchs on a bug just not totally convinced they go right with a 356." - ExtremeBean

Jason, just for visual reference, here's my VS on lowered rear via adjustable trailing arms (swing axle)...IMG_20141204_121112...lowered front with 2" drop spindles...Calendar 2...Empi fake Fuchs 5.5 x 15 with 3.75" backspace (clearance for wider wheels & tires) and 185 x 60 x 15 tires. Empi disc brake rotors all around with 5 x 130mm Porsche lug pattern.Big Res 4CJI_7134

Please excuse my thinly-veiled and blatant attempts for attention by posting these pics of my car. 

Hope this visual & info helps!  @ExtremeBean

 

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MusbJim posted:

"I'm planning on an original look with full trim, mildly lowered (which is another question I have off the top) Do you guys just use dropped spindles or what? Narrow the beam at all? Silver with red interior. Probably 5 wides with the nipple hubcaps. I love fuchs on a bug just not totally convinced they go right with a 356." - ExtremeBean

Jason, just for visual reference, here's my VS on lowered rear via adjustable trailing arms (swing axle)...IMG_20141204_121112...lowered front with 2" drop spindles...Calendar 2...Empi fake Fuchs 5.5 x 15 with 3.75" backspace (clearance for wider wheels & tires) and 185 x 60 x 15 tires. Empi disc brake rotors all around with 5 x 130mm Porsche lug pattern.Big Res 4CJI_7134

Please excuse my thinly-veiled and blatant attempts for attention by posting these pics of my car. 

Hope this visual & info helps!  @ExtremeBean

 

Gorgeous car!  That stance is pretty much what Im going after.  Do you get any tire rub at all?  Are you using a camber compensator on the rear? Is the front ball joint or link pin?  Stock width?

"Gorgeous car! That stance is pretty much what Im going after. Do you get any tire rub at all? Are you using a camber compensator on the rear? Is the front ball joint or link pin? Stock width?" - ExtremeBean

Like Ted replied, swing-axle rear (narrower than IRS), adjustable spring plate, 2" drop spindles on ball joints. Don't have compensator or sway bar on the car (just a cruiser).

With this wheel & tire set-up (185 x 60 x 15) no tire rubbing at all (rear tire to fender clearance is about 1/4"). All four wheels have 3.75 back-space, primarily to accommodate rear set up. However, with that wheel back-space in front, the inset of the wheels in the fender well looked like I had narrowed the beam. Didn't look right to me, so I installed 1 3/4" wheel spacers (hub centric) to push wheels out.

The dropped spindles added about 3/4' wider track on each side, so the 1 3/4" spacers put the wheels right where I wanted them for the lowered stance I was after. 

Click on pic to enlarge...CJI_7015

@ExtremeBean  @TRP

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Note that type 1 swing axles (and their matching tubes) come in 3 different lengths-

1961-'66 are short axle/short spline (26 11/16")- gives room for the extra offset of disc or type 3 brakes and some leeway for different wheel/tire combinations                                         

1967 only long axle/short spline (27 13/16")                                                                           

'68 and newer (and I believe all type 3) long axle long spline (28 7/16")- the same track (or very close) as type 1 irs.

I don't know what the 1960 and older split case trans beetles use for axles and tubes; I do know that they are shorter (exactly how short I don't know), the axles themselves are thinner, and that they can be bolted to a later swingaxle tunnel case. Al

ExtremeBean posted:
calmotion posted:

@ExtremeBean looks like you have been watching Jay Leno YouTube video. Nice choice. Welcome to the Madness 👍

Haha yup. Ive watched a ton a videos. This one just really stood out to me. You know when you see a style you like and you just say to yourself, "thats the one!"

That's Tom Murtaugh's car. He's a member here.

@Black Betty has a VERY nice car. See all what he's done. 

@Manny Drives Black Sheila and that car is also superb. 

@flatfourfan Is also build an extremely detailed replica.

If you look over their pages you'll see some pretty amazing stuff.

Robert M posted:
ExtremeBean posted:
calmotion posted:

@ExtremeBean looks like you have been watching Jay Leno YouTube video. Nice choice. Welcome to the Madness 👍

Haha yup. Ive watched a ton a videos. This one just really stood out to me. You know when you see a style you like and you just say to yourself, "thats the one!"

That's Tom Murtaugh's car. He's a member here.

@Black Betty has a VERY nice car. See all what he's done. 

@Manny Drives Black Sheila and that car is also superb. 

@flatfourfan Is also build an extremely detailed replica.

If you look over their pages you'll see some pretty amazing stuff.

What am I... chopped liver?!? Idont I have her longest build thread on this site?

Man, not even one mention... (kicking can down the street crying...)

*LongFella posted:
What am I... chopped liver?!? Idont I have her longest build thread on this site?

Man, not even one mention... (kicking can down the street crying...)

 
TRP posted like two week ago..:

 Mango set the bar for individual builds.  Brian comes in second with his blue speedster and his coupe.  My thread is really only good if you want to see someone do the same thing two or three times.   

Settle down Snowflake... See above.  

This is what happens when you give kids participation trophies their whole lives.  

Share the links man!

TRP posted:
*LongFella posted:
What am I... chopped liver?!? Idont I have her longest build thread on this site?

Man, not even one mention... (kicking can down the street crying...)

 
TRP posted like two week ago..:

 Mango set the bar for individual builds.  Brian comes in second with his blue speedster and his coupe.  My thread is really only good if you want to see someone do the same thing two or three times.   

Settle down Snowflake... See above.  

This is what happens when you give kids participation trophies their whole lives.  

Share the links man!

I’m still waiting for my ribbon

Hey Jason!

I'm honored to hear that you're considering a similar look for your build.  Let me know if you come to LA to visit Greg at Vintage Motorcars.  If you show up sober, I'll even let you take 'er for a spin!  Haha.

You're definitely in the right spot to gather info, so please don't hesitate to ask questions.  Good luck on your research, and welcome to the madness!

OK, I’ve bit my tongue until now, but this post reminds me of something that happened in college. I was living in a fraternity and, one day, an alumnus, who was there recruiting on campus, was wandering around the house. One timid pledge asked him “are you a member?” He said, “boy, a member is the thing between your legs, I’m a Theta Xi!”

Therefore, I’m not a member, I’m a Speedster Owner! 😉
>
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*LongFella posted:
TRP posted:
*LongFella posted:
What am I... chopped liver?!? Idont I have her longest build thread on this site?

Man, not even one mention... (kicking can down the street crying...)

 
TRP posted like two week ago..:

 Mango set the bar for individual builds.  Brian comes in second with his blue speedster and his coupe.  My thread is really only good if you want to see someone do the same thing two or three times.   

Settle down Snowflake... See above.  

This is what happens when you give kids participation trophies their whole lives.  

Share the links man!

I’m still waiting for my ribbon

SnowflakesGlitterDazzleSM

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