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Had the chance the last couple of weeks to make a bit of progress on my Kitman Speedster:

1) I got the front and middle areas of the body bolted bolted to the subframe

2) installed the headlights and taillights - Chris from Kitman provided a template for the latter.

3) installed fuel tank

4) Started on the doors, but I have a long way to go on both.

I have not yet bolted the rear portion of the body to the subframe as I need to figure out the correct height.  You may be able to see in the pictures that the rear part of the body is sitting lower than it should.  I suspect, in order to make the engine cover fit I’m going to have to go with a different fan shroud as well.  My best guess on the correct height is when the door gaps are even.  

Dave

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  • Front view
  • Rear view
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@Nadodave- If your fan shroud is so high it's bumping up against the lid (it looks like the carb linkage and maybe even air filters will be too) something is not right.  The 36 hp style round shroud may sit a little higher overall than the later sheet metal, but it's not that much.  As you said- get the rear sitting so the doors fit right and see where you are then.  Al

Thanks for the input.  I'm a newbie, so all advice is appreciated.

1) I am pretty sure I modified and mounted the gas tank per the CMC manual, but I will double check.

2) I think when bolted to the rear subframe, the body will sit about 2" higher than the pictures show.  It is possible the body could is "channeled", not sure.  I am going to change the fan shroud for the recommended 71 shroud (which I just found).  That's  annoying because I bought the non-heater shroud specifically.  The carb linkage may be problematic and the air filters will have to change to something lower profile for sure.

I think my plan is to continue the door mounting head trauma so I can confirm the door gaps when securing the rear portion of the body.  Sure would have liked having either a template for the door install or having them come installed on the body as the CMC cars apparently did.

Question: Has anybody seen a type 4 installation in a Speedster?  I have a nice 2.0 type 4 engine I might want to swap in later if it is feasible.

Thanks again.

@Nadodave wrote: “1) I am pretty sure I modified and mounted the gas tank per the CMC manual, but I will double check.”

Well, the good news is that you installed the tank in the proper orientation ( it actually can only go in there one way, anyway).  I just checked mine and that angled corner on the front driver side is in the same spot on yours and mine.  

The bad news is that the filler needs to go to the opposite diagonal corner which puts it at the top of the tank, not the bottom.  The filler should be on the flat spot in the top corner of the passenger side.  If you pull the tank and take it to a radiator shop they should be able to move the filler to the right location AND weld a circular disk over the hole at the front driver side of the tank.

Take the tank to the radiator shop and get a quote AFTER you price a new tank from someplace for a ‘69 - ‘70 VW sedan ( like CIP1.com )  The price to move the neck might be more than a new tank!

Welders don't like welding gas tanks with fumes in them - BOOM.  It can be done filling tank with inert gas (CO2) .  The high capacity tank I used is $125 plus the cap unique to tank.  I didn't have to modify anything and trunk lid closes.

I have 2 914 engines and the bus flywheel that is needed.  You can convert to Raby DTM up right cooling, joe Cali upright using T1/T4 cooling bits (there is abook available) or leave it the was it is - flat pancake pooling.  Here picture I found of the flat engine in a Speedster replica.

914 engine in speed2

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  • 914 engine in speed2

No welding method: I install the tank with the filler neck at the upper left near the windshield. Cut the filler neck 3/4" above the new tank's surface, take that cut off filler section to the auto parts store,  get an exhaust adapter that allows the filler to be placed inside the adapter and pick up some JB Kwik Weld.  Cut the adapter in half, clean and JB Weld that into the 3/4"  section on the tank and allow that to set up for an hour. While that sets up,  install a small ID vent tube into the cap end of the filler neck. JB Weld the cap end filler neck the the other half of the exhaust adapter.  All you need for the actual vent is a very small opening to equalize the tank vent pressure ,  I remove the pin from a pop rivet and place the hollow rivet into the hose near the filer vent nipple to restrict any sloshing gas from escaping but it still allows for a small amount of air for venting.

Fan shroud clearance issue:  I spent a couple of hours working on pulling the rounded fan shroud and installing the stock ‘71 shroud.  Because of the doghouse cooler, I had to pull the engine back to get the shroud off.  With the rear of the body about where it should be (based on door gaps) I am still at least an inch short on clearance for the engine cover.  Frustrating.  I may have to go with on of the shorty fan shrouds.  

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  • DBE12BE6-6B76-4501-BA7B-881C44274330

Could be a few things: Transmission mount issue, bent frame horns ( damaged or internal rust ) or  the chassis was not welded back together perfectly horizontal and the rear of the chassis has a few degrees upward angle.  I ran into this twice with projects I bought, I cut out a section under the deck lid and re-glassed it for additional clearance. If the engine is out it's easy to measure.

Looking at the kitman subframe I notice that it is definately different to the one I have. My kit (356-speedster in the Netherlands) has double tubes at the sill. The lower one is horizontal, just like yours. Then there is one above that, which is angled upwards to the back. The sills of the body rest on this upper tube, and this determines the height of the rear. If your sills are resting on that horizontal tube, I'm not surprised the rear is so low. I would look into body position before changing cooling shroud.

picture for reference

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  • 826D247B-0636-4328-B2A3-9FF54C1EF9D4

I like your custom hinges.  Might be just the incentive I need to get a TIG welder . In the meantime, I made some brackets to attach to the deck lid for the hinges to bolt to.  I also decided to go with what Jbugs calls a "Ram Air Fan Shroud". There may still be some interference in the center, but there will be far more room for the hinges.  Is the box mounted to your firewall some sort of breather device?  Love the color or your car.

@Marcel posted:

Looking at the kitman subframe I notice that it is definately different to the one I have. My kit (356-speedster in the Netherlands) has double tubes at the sill. The lower one is horizontal, just like yours. Then there is one above that, which is angled upwards to the back. The sills of the body rest on this upper tube, and this determines the height of the rear. If your sills are resting on that horizontal tube, I'm not surprised the rear is so low. I would look into body position before changing cooling shroud.

picture for reference

Thanks.  I now realize that shortening my frame may not have been the best choice.  I should have purchased the custom frame for sure.

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