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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just picked up my new Rabbit today. This will be a VERY fun car to drive as it handles nice, is quick, and is built by a engineering VW expert. Kudos to the builder. I don't have any body shots because I just finished throwing the cover over it because it was snowing. I plan on converting the front end to single rounds, painting it orange with black trim (around windows, fender flares, handles, etc.) and a big chin spoiler.
Anyways, here are some pictures of the engineering that went into this Rabbit. The gentleman who built the car is both a VW enthusiast and an excellent racer and he has been kicking my but up the hill for years with both his skill of driving and skill of building fast cars. This is actually one generation back from his current racer, but it is still very impressive.
I have some plans for this car to make it look prettyish (read: make it look nice without spending a lot of money) along with changes to fit into my driving style and needs. I do plan to make it road legal (essentially working lights) so that I can get a feel for the car before showing up at my first event.
Here was the "ad" for the car from one of my racing buddies and the (then current) previous owner of the car:
Quote »
Lightweight 1980 Rabbit built up and driven through the '90's by famed
hillclimber Bill Rutan, who amazed everyone by putting this full-bodied,
plain looking sedan well up into the top 10 against all comers. This car is
one of the strongest and most uniquely modified Rabbit race cars ever made.
Rutan's cage extends through the firewall and ties the front and rear spring
towers together, and the front suspension is further braced by not only the
usual upper tie bar (custom), but also by a special lower Rutan K-frame that
connects the control arm mounts. I had two offs in the 2006 season that bent
up the grill and front right side, but Steve Turgeon and I were back
successfully racing at the next climb in both cases. The frame never bent.
This car is STRONG (and never, to my knowledge, been on its roof).
Further Rutan mods include front uprights that have had the spindles raised
2", which lowers the car 2" without changing the front geometry, plus a
unique 2" lower rear suspension that features a revised trailing link pivot
point and a Watts link for lateral location. Corner entry using left foot
braking (oversized brake pedal too) gets the rear end out at times most
Rabbits want to plow a bit. Pretty slick.
Engine is a 2 liter 8 valve by Precision Motor Werkes (Marblehead), further developed at the Eurosport dyno in Framingham. It uses the larger Golf intake with a BMW body, ported head, Serti valve job with race pistons and springs. Fat-lobed, torquey cam, 4:1 race header, side exhaust with muffler.
Measured 12.6-1 compression (diesel starter); uses 110 race gas. MSD
ignition box and coil. Diesel radiator, power steering, lightweight
alternator, recent battery in RR box. Unique, custom Rutan pedestal shifter gets the knob near the wheel for fast, short shifts and abets quick autocross steering inputs. Five speed GTI transmission (rebuilt by BSI Racing '05) drives rare, high ratio diesel ring and pinion with Quaife LSD.
Car will be accompanied by a substantial batch of spare parts, hardware, VW tools,etc. now residing in the van. Someone please buy the whole works so I don't have to empty the van-?
Car is sitting on 205/60R13 Toyo Proxes combination rain/race tires on Vial wheels. Five wider wheels (3 aluminum, 2 Diamond, same backset) come with the car along with 3 very good Hoosier R3S04 P225/50R13s. The two sets (buy one more Hoosier) will easily get the car through another season.








 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Re: 1980 VW Rabbit "racer" (BlkVrsix66)

Quote, originally posted by BlkVrsix66 »
Nice, looks like a fun ride. I work in Milton so I'll keep an eye out for you http://****************.com/smile/emthup.gif

Car should be driving around Milton (slowly so not to attract attention) in May.... I hope. I have to complete my 1.8T racer first (needs new head and tune) before getting into the 1980 Rabbit.
In the meantime, I have to sell my 1983 GTI and figure out what to do with my 1982 (or so) 2-door Rabbit (great shell, just too many projects).
Steve
 

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Re: 1980 VW Rabbit "racer" (Rabbit Farmer)

damn that thing has some serious work into it! cant wait to see what you do with er http://****************.com/smile/emthup.gif http://****************.com/smile/emthup.gif
would love to see what she looks like whenever you get to take some outside shots!!



Modified by VWralley at 10:51 AM 3-17-2008
 

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Re: 1980 VW Rabbit "racer" (Rabbit Farmer)

Quote, originally posted by Rabbit Farmer »
Further Rutan mods include front uprights that have had the spindles raised
2", which lowers the car 2" without changing the front geometry,



I know a few people around here would be really interested to hear more about this. Is it a modified VW piece or something else?
the rear setup is just as interesting




Modified by MAgtiVR6 at 1:59 PM 3-17-2008
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Re: 1980 VW Rabbit "racer" (VWralley)

I have a lot of information that came with the car. I plan to get some details shots of everything once I get around to working on this car. It does not look like much from the outside (the last owner had an issue with a ditch that ruined the front end... but, that is the risk of racing).
The guy who built this car is a machinist so he prob. made a lot of parts from scratch. This will make it hard for me to fix some parts as they break, but again... that is a risk of owning this car.
I'm really excited about digging into this car.
 

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Re: 1980 VW Rabbit "racer" (MAgtiVR6)

Quote, originally posted by MAgtiVR6 »


I know a few people around here would be really interested to hear more about this. Is it a modified VW piece or something else?
the rear setup is just as interesting



The front setup is a raised 2" strut tower and it looks like a tie rod flip kit custom made using heim joints.
" which lowers the car 2" without changing the front geometry, plus a
unique 2" lower rear suspension that features a revised trailing link pivot
point and a Watts link for lateral location."
^^
Explain the rear suspension, or more pics or something!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Re: 1980 VW Rabbit "racer" (Shawn B)

Quote, originally posted by Shawn B »
Explain the rear suspension, or more pics or something!

More pictures I can do... as for explaning it... oh boy. One part of bracing keeps the outer points of the trailing arms in place (hard cornering normally forces in one side of the arm actually bending it, therefore, changing the angle of the wheel in relation to the car).
Anyway, I'll get more pictures once I get it off the ground (literally). First the 83 Rabbit, then the 01 Golf 1.8T then the 82 Rabbit... then finally I'll jump into the 80 Rabbit.
 

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Re: 1980 VW Rabbit "racer" (Shawn B)

Quote, originally posted by Shawn B »

The front setup is a raised 2" strut tower and it looks like a tie rod flip kit custom made using heim joints.

Thanks! I did in fact see that
.. what I'd like to know is what was done to the front upright itself. the distance between the the axle and the control arm is roughly two inches over what a stock one would normally be, I've seen ball joint extenders used .. but this setup looks different.

so curious




Modified by MAgtiVR6 at 4:02 PM 3-17-2008
 

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Re: 1980 VW Rabbit "racer" (MAgtiVR6)

Quote, originally posted by MAgtiVR6 »

I've seen ball joint extenders used .. but this setup looks different.

so curious

more than likely he welded on an extension an braced the living hell out of it http://****************.com/smile/emthup.gif i have seen it done a number of ways, everyone has their own way about it

so...got a pics of the next generation this guy built?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Re: 1980 VW Rabbit "racer" (Shawn B)

Photos.... they will be on Vermontracing.com whenever we load all the photos back onto the site (we recently moved to a new host).
http://www.WilliRacing.com has some shots of his Scirocco (Generation 1). There is also his son's Generation 2 AWD V-6 (600 HP) that he built (or helped design and build... unsure of his exact level of involvement)
I don't have access to either site from work so I can't point to any specifics.
Stay tuned to this VW-Channel... updates are forthcoming.
 

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awesome ride....More pics of that rear sway bar setup please!
I have dual round buckets and a grille if you want to buy/trade send a pm. mint condition. stock badge w/ chrome surround.
If I get the rest of the car I pulled it off of I could cut out the core support and send that too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Re: (SGLoki)

Quote, originally posted by SGLoki »
I have dual round buckets and a grille if you want to buy/trade send a pm. mint condition. stock badge w/ chrome surround

I'm think of just single rounds. I might just cut the front end off a perfect shell that I have (one I am selling) just so I don't need to purchase more parts. Of course, I could always trade the complete shell for round front end w/ fenders if it came down to it.
s
 
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