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Discussion Starter #102 (Edited)
I plan on having the original graphics recreated once it's painted, I quite like the red on silver, and with the gold mesh wheels...

There's some sort of engineer in Arizona that road races these things as a hobby. He's done a massive amount of R&D involving these cars and has developed his own coilover suspension using MK3 front coilovers and home made rear coilovers out of MK2 rear struts. He is currently building five complete sets for sale, I got my name on the list for a set about three months ago. Should pair nicely with the Aspire setup...





 

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I remember these rolling around new, back in the day, when I worked at a quick-lube shop. I also recall some pretty wild decal / stripe packages. It would be cool to recreate a period-correct scheme, if you restore it.

There were louder schemes, I believe. Not too many pics online.


There is a bright yellow one with this paint scheme that is still daily driven near me. I stare every time I see it :laugh:

Love this thread! Never owned a Festiva, but I did have a 94ish Aspire that was actually a blast to drive. That thing was unkillable and I drove it everywhere. As fast as possible with 46MPG no matter how I drove it. Ended up selling it after my wife drove it ONE TIME.
 

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Discussion Starter #105
Got word yesterday that the coilovers are complete and will be ready to ship next week!

Stock on the left, designer of the suspension with his suspension installed on the right. I don't even care about the fact that it lowers the car, everyone who has built the same suspension from his plans says the ride quality increases drastically as well as cornering like its on rails.



Debating throwing the suspension in with the stock Festiva spindles and rear axle, funds at the moment are not going to allow for a complete teardown/powder coat/rebuild of the aspire swap, though I could run it as is. We also have this arriving from British Columbia by train next week. It needs new shocks and tires, so that will be taking up some of the car funds I have saved.

 

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Nice addition to the garage (or soon to be!)
 

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Debating throwing the suspension in with the stock Festiva spindles and rear axle, funds at the moment are not going to allow for a complete teardown/powder coat/rebuild of the aspire swap, though I could run it as is. We also have this arriving from British Columbia by train next week. It needs new shocks and tires, so that will be taking up some of the car funds I have saved.

That must be some Canadian thing... I don't recall seeing a dove blue late model (usually that denotes that it's a commercial application) or a panel in the U.S., but of course there's no 'chicken tax' up there. What's the roof shape? It's definitely not a Westfalia, but it doesn't look like any other highroof setup I've seen before, either. This coming from a guy who has seen (photos) of the boat that's designed to fit in the drip rails!

Also, does it have a Beetle-derived (1600) engine or is it a Type IV back there? Here in the U.S. they all had Type IVs by the time those taillights were in production, but I don't know about what was available in Canada.
 

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Discussion Starter #108 (Edited)
That must be some Canadian thing... I don't recall seeing a dove blue late model (usually that denotes that it's a commercial application) or a panel in the U.S., but of course there's no 'chicken tax' up there. What's the roof shape? It's definitely not a Westfalia, but it doesn't look like any other highroof setup I've seen before, either. This coming from a guy who has seen (photos) of the boat that's designed to fit in the drip rails!

Also, does it have a Beetle-derived (1600) engine or is it a Type IV back there? Here in the U.S. they all had Type IVs by the time those taillights were in production, but I don't know about what was available in Canada.
I'll start off stating that I am a complete aircooled newb.

We drove to LA from Toronto last year and fell in love with the trip, so we decided to sell our '57 Chevy and buy something we could live out of as well that would also fulfill our classic car need. I've always wanted a Baywindow as well. I have to get used to the quirks and downfalls of old VWs before we do any serious roadtrips in it, but it passed a PPI with a fairly clean bill of health, so I'm hoping it's not too problematic for us, though I expect to be tinkering with it.

As for the bus itself, it's a '72 with a type IV. It was converted to a camper by a company called Dorper when new. I've been told the Dorpers started life as panel vans.










If aircooled's don't turn out to be our thing, we will always be able to flip it for more than we paid for it here in Ontario. Clean stuff commands a premium here due to us being in the rust belt.
 

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Discussion Starter #110
Few pictures and a write up on the coilover build

First, the front shocks are disassembled, and the lower mounting brackets are stripped in an acid bath to remove all zinc plating. This ensures a good weld joined can be achieved.
The lower brackets are then set up in a mill and the lower mounting holes are cut completely out with a rotobroach tool. This is done on centerline with the Mazda BF mounting pattern.


After the brackets have been cut to accept the bushings (also custom made) the parts are chamfered for a proper weld joint. They are then bolted up to a festiva knuckle to ensure proper fit on a Festiva.


The bushings are then tig welded into the brackets. This process is done in accordance with AWS D17.1 class A specifications (MIL.STD-22-19).

The brackets are then set back up in my mill fixture so the bushings can be align bored to 12.5mm and the top mounting holes can be slotted 0.200" for maximum camber adjustability. This ensures that precise alignment can be done quickly, since all the parts are dimensionally consistent.

The brackets are then checked for fitment, deburred and re-zinc coated.


The shock shafts are then turned on a lathe to accept the kia rio strut mount bearings securely. This ensures a precision part that fits properly.


The front shocks are then re-assembled with 120lb front springs and the preload is preset to a position that I find works well for most applications. You should just be able to bolt them up, set the camber and adjust your toe and go.

The rear shocks lower mounts are precision cut to length with a wire EDM machine. A bushing is also supplied to space the shock out further from the wheel for maximum clearance.
The rear spring adjuster sleeves are drilled with drain holes and then glued to the shocks with 3M urethane adhesive.
The shocks are then assembled with either 105lb or the heavy duty 120lb springs (for heavy loads and trailer towing). The rear upper spring hat is a 2 piece rubber filled part that I designed to reduce road noise compared to the 1 piece design that I've shown on my build threads. I don't have pictures of these yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #112
I love stuff like that coilover build. Custom work with precision. :thumbup:
He has a write up on how to build them yourself, and I almost bought all the parts to do it, but after finding out he was going to produce five sets for the public built to his standards, I opted to wait and shell out the extra money to get a set built by him.
 

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He has a write up on how to build them yourself, and I almost bought all the parts to do it, but after finding out he was going to produce five sets for the public built to his standards, I opted to wait and shell out the extra money to get a set built by him.
Yeah, when it comes to suspension it doesn't hurt to have things as "right" as possible. They look to be of excellent quality. What great looking welds, too! :thumbup:

If you need advice on the camper, let me know and I'll help where I can. Now go and start a thread on it so it doesn't clutter this one too badly!
 

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Discussion Starter #115
The Fed-Ex man arrived this weekend and dropped off a big box...



That could only mean that these had arrived!



A bit closer up



Now, the question is do I install these with the Aspire suspension as-is, or save up some money and have it blasted, coated, and replace everything like I'd normally do. The second option probably won't happen till next year.
 

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Now, the question is do I install these with the Aspire suspension as-is, or save up some money and have it blasted, coated, and replace everything like I'd normally do. The second option probably won't happen till next year.
Hmmmm... In your shoes I think I'd bolt them in. You can dismantle and powder coat next year while enjoying it to its maximum potential for that time. :beer:
 

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Hmmmm... In your shoes I think I'd bolt them in. You can dismantle and powder coat next year while enjoying it to its maximum potential for that time. :beer:
I agree. :thumbup:
 

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Discussion Starter #118
Had the tuna fish can at a local car show last weekend. If I had a dollar for every time I heard "I haven't seen one of these in x amount of years", I'd be rich. I was nursing a hangover and sleeping it off in our VW bus, and some friends decided to enter it in the lowest car limbo.

 

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Had the tuna fish can at a local car show last weekend. If I had a dollar for every time I heard "I haven't seen one of these in x amount of years", I'd be rich. I was nursing a hangover and sleeping it off in our VW bus, and some friends decided to enter it in the lowest car limbo.

I think holding the antenna down is cheating. :p
 

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I shouldn't be so excited about this thread, but I am :laugh:

Your girl is pretty awesome :thumbup:
 
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