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ALB posted:

You can say it all you want, but since we don't know exactly what you're talking about, when you're asking for advice it's a little hard to know what to tell you. Just sayin'...

So, you still haven't answered my question- what 4th gear are you running?

Standard VW 1-4 gearing with a 3.88 RP. I’m not at home at the moment so I don’t have the actual 1-4 gear numbers. Trans in the Speedster was from Kirk at VS - so I could reach out to him and his vendor to get the actual numbers, but that take too long  

Theron posted:

Ok, ok, I'm going to bring the bickering to an end. 

I propose highway-flyer, interstate-flyer, bonneville-salt-flat-flyer and really-long-straight-downhill-country-road-flyer.  These are, of course, all  used in the noun form.

If we are talking about it in verb form then it should be highway-flier, interstate-flier, bonneville-salt-flat-flier and really-long-straight-downhill-country-road-flier. 

Nuff said.


I like your thinking Theron

The 3.44 with a .93 is pretty much the perfect highway final drive for a 2L+ mill. It's the same as a .82 with a 3.88, but using the .82/3.88 with a stock 3rd makes the reach from 3rd to 4th pretty much unusable.

I've got a 3.10/2.06/1.31/.93 with a 3.44. The mainshaft is custom, as is 3rd. The .93 was OG on '73 onward Beetles. "Standard" Rancho (and others) ratios are 3.78/2.06/1.26/.89, generally with a 4.12.

"Freeway Fliers" can mean stock gearing with a 3.88 R/P, or stock gearing with a .82 4th and a 4.12. The 3.88 version is far, far better.


Last edited by Stan Galat

My Spyder came with a 3.88 r&p and a .82 4th which would have created that big gap between 3rd and 4th, which is why I changed the gears to a 3.44 and a .93.

That's what I run in the TD as well and it works a treat: 1st is plenty low for starting off on hills and she gets up and goes just fine. Probably hits 60 in about 6 seconds flat at the top of second gear. I'm sure the 3.88 would be quicker off the line but I didn't build her to drag race.

The 2.2 Subaru, with 140 ft-lbs and 135 hp, loves this trans in Bridget, which weighs about 1800 pounds. 6000 rpm in 3rd is 100 mph (theoretically, of course); 3000 rpm in 4th is about 70 mph and that's the sweet spot for keeping up with highway traffic, even if I'd rather be doing 50 mph on a shaded two-lane.

I'm thinking the same gears should work just about as well in a 1400 (or so)-pound Spyder pushed by a 120 hp 1915. Same red line as the Suby (they both peak about 5500 and pull through 6000). The Spyder's power-to-weight will be a little better, with each horse moving a little under 12 pounds, as opposed to a little more than 13 pounds in Bridget. 

Picking the Spyder's transaxle up next Saturday, and progress continues.


So I go away for a bit and you knuckle heads start up again about transmissions..

Have you not read Terry Nuckles 10 million best selling book, "Trans-Mission, aint like fish'n", captivating guide book on how to set up a proper transmission for your driving needs.

Let me throw in my $100,000 opinion.. (that would be $3 million in Canadian)

all of these parts work in concert:

Rims and Tire size (which nobody mentioned), engine, transmission.

Once you know the exact engine size and specs and the exact size rims and tire size your going to use and never deviate, THEN decide on the gearing and what you want form the transmission,  and your driving preferences..

You can go to the weddle gear site and play with the gear ratio calculator

I know you don't want a 5 speed.  This will be a big help not only to understand the gear selection and RP but to fine tune your gears to fit your driving needs and get the best from a 4 speed..  It will show you the RPM's for each gear and the gaps....  Its a great tool and was a huge help when I had Scott Sebastian Build my transmission.. Which works well with my tire size, engine and my personal driving needs.  

Sorry I went a little Stan G here


damn!! my finger hurts from all this typing


I've got the same trans as Stan, except I DON'T have a custom gear set.

That custom mainshaft for 1-2 is pricey!

His 3.10 1st is custom, as is his 3rd and 4th.

Stock 1-4 is 3.80, 2.06, 1.26, and 0.89. Which works well in a 1500 pound Spyder with 170 hp on a 3.44 final. I submit it would be REALLY nice to split 3rd, a little shorter and a little longer, and use the stock 4th as 5th. But that's not financially feasible in MY car. Unless it was built that way from the start.

Ed, that's a good choice with less power on tap. For those with heavier Speedsters, unless you have torque monsters, I wouldn't recommend anything taller than the 3.88 final.

Quick update on the build...

Picked up the front beam, disc brakes, hard lines (decided to not make my own on this build), master cylinder, pedals, caster shims, all hardware, etc.

Should have it all in within an hour or two this weekend to complete the front end. Pics will follow  I decided on a single adjustable (versus both tubes) set in the neutral position (for now) and 2" drop spindles. I can use the single adjustment to get the perfect stance. Whitewalker is going to have a very aggressive stance.

@550 Phil - I was drueling over your Spyder at Greg's shop when I was there. Didn't have time to take photos, but that engine... damn she looks good!!!

My goal: Have both the coupe and speedster cruising through wine country for the next West Coast Cruise

Bill Prout posted:

I'm curious as to why the textured finish vs smooth since you planned on using the Dynamat? I'd be concerned with air pockets and moisture between the two.

Top notch job either way!

When applying, I use a heat gun to soften and make the bottom more tacky. IMO this helps stick the product on better and work in all the little pits/pockets/curves.

I also used truck bed liner to add weight to the chassis and water proof it all. Even if water did get under the dynomat it won’t penetrate the truck bed liner. Some weight idea/thinking applies to the dynomat. Helps with sound proofing, sealing, and adds weight...

But I’m no expert in all this. It’s only my second build!

Quick little update...

Got to see Greg the past couple of days this week and pick up some more parts for the Coupe. Trans has been ordered and should be in next week. Only need the custom rims and tires and I'll have the rolling chassis complete.

I also talked about the body and the look I am going for so Greg knows what to do for the body. We agreed on price for the body, paint, glass, trim and rubber. I am planning to make the deposit at the end of this week or next week to get things moving.

On a side note... his shop is PACKED full of awesomeness. He certainly looked a little stressed with how busy things are. I told him to crawl to the desert and take a weekend off

Those things dont fit my transmission (or any trans with heavy duty side plates.)

I thought maybe if i could get someone to widen that center plate so the fingers would fit then maybe. The only issue I can see there is that maybe the widened version would then hit the frame horns.

It's pretty tight under there. I actually had to shave the frame horns so the side plate bolts wouldn't rub.

Last edited by TRP

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