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    Thread: Building the Ultimate 1983 Rabbit GTI (vw mk1)?

    1. 10-07-2014 01:27 AM #251
      First of all, I feel bad about having Greens give me one of your GTI wheels, Arsenic. I owe you one ... these wheels are going to be a big part of the project success when it is all said and done (looking totally stock exterior and interior is my goal).

      Re. the Eastwood flaring tool - I thought a lot about going that way rather than the Mastercool because it is a really nice option but I realized that there were a few flares that I needed to make on the chassis and that sealed the deal for me. Not the easiest thing to do when 'out of position' with only 2 hands but I managed to not screw up the flares while working on the chassis ...

      Re. tool borrowing, sure - but leave me your girl friend until you return it!

      Re. RPI, Tom is the one that pushed me to go with the H&R Race springs rather than the Sport springs. He also gave me the very last set of Bilstein p/n V36-0059 struts on the planet and for that I cannot be more grateful. I realize that the rears are pretty close to the sport springs (I am guessing about 15-20% stiffer) while the fronts look a lot stiffer, but since I am trying to avoid a front sway bar, maybe the end result will be an acceptable ride for what I am looking for (I ran the full Bilstein sport kit back in '83 with some full race sway bars and the car was really stiff but I loved it. We didn't have punishing hard urethane bushings back then on the GTI so it didn't feel too harsh ...

    2. Member LT1M21Stingray's Avatar
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      10-07-2014 01:43 AM #252
      Quote Originally Posted by Stephan Schmidt
      WOW! I just realized that this build is local to me in Vancouver BC!! I used to work with Tom @ RPI and I recognize Green's Automotive!
      Quote Originally Posted by Derek Spratt
      Re. RPI, Tom is the one that pushed me to go with the H&R Race springs rather than the Sport springs. He also gave me the very last set of Bilstein p/n V36-0059 struts on the planet and for that I cannot be more grateful. I realize that the rears are pretty close to the sport springs (I am guessing about 15-20% stiffer) while the fronts look a lot stiffer, but since I am trying to avoid a front sway bar, maybe the end result will be an acceptable ride for what I am looking for (I ran the full Bilstein sport kit back in '83 with some full race sway bars and the car was really stiff but I loved it. We didn't have punishing hard urethane bushings back then on the GTI so it didn't feel too harsh ...
      When I moved out of Vancouver, I raised my Scirocco twice to get an ok ride/handling. Other than the Gastown/downtown area, I'm sure you'll be doing fine with the race spring setup.

      Also bought several parts from RPI in the 90's.
      Last edited by LT1M21Stingray; 10-07-2014 at 01:50 AM.
      Quote Originally Posted by Mk1Madness
      Back when making your car faster and better handling was the big thing.
      Quote Originally Posted by Tavarish
      The car's best safety feature includes ejecting you in the moment of impact and wishing you the best of luck.

    3. Member deepgrooves74's Avatar
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      10-07-2014 05:43 AM #253
      Quote Originally Posted by Derek Spratt View Post
      Re. tool borrowing, sure - but leave me your girl friend until you return it!
      you can have the wife I'll keep the girlfriend… if you are actually being serious I would love to have a real conversation about that. Not about the wife though… I don't think she likes Canada.
      Someday I will drive this... Always something else to fix or upgrade!

      http://forums.vwvortex.com/showthrea...t-TD-SVO-Build

    4. 10-07-2014 05:47 PM #254
      If anyone has a source on this item I would appreciate the link. My console (with the 3 gauges) is in 'useable' shape but the back black plastic vertical panel was cut up by the prior owner and he also cut a square hole to move the stereo to where the gauges were. So sad. I can live with it (I have an aftermarket 3 gauge bezel that will cover up the square hole and I can fabricate something to replace the black plastic but it would be nicer to have a clean console).
      Last edited by Derek Spratt; 10-07-2014 at 05:53 PM.

    5. 10-07-2014 05:54 PM #255
      Yes, I can loan out the tools from time to time ... still need to flare more fittings for the rear axle but should be done that soon enough ...

    6. 10-07-2014 06:41 PM #256
      I have sourced 2 more of the side vents and will be working to try and integrate them cleanly into the open hole in the center of my non A/C dash but it would be better to find an original set of A/C vents that would snap into place. I never liked the fact that air was only blowing from the sides of the console and think it wouldn't be too much trouble to modify the air box to allow for these additional vents to be connected ...

    7. 10-08-2014 03:26 PM #257
      I got the steering wheel back from Custom Craft today: they re-wrapped the wheel with 1mm of foam and then soft leather. I am very pleased with the end result: a very nice feel to it, not too soft, not too firm, just the right diameter, with the stitching where my fingers want to engage it. I will treat the leather to match the soft gloss of the vinyl center section.



      New video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7HmsSVsU418

    8. 10-08-2014 04:06 PM #258
      Now that's what I call OEM+. Very nice sir.

    9. 10-20-2014 01:06 AM #259
      With the help of my wife I moved the engine, stand and hoist from my office to my garage so the GTI is now happily sitting next to the motor and trans. Josh is shipping the clutch Tuesday so I will have everything in hand to install the engine/trans next weekend! I will lift the chassis up using my come-alongs one last time, roll the engine/trans together under it, lower the chassis one last time onto jack stands, use the hoist to lift the engine/trans into place, bolt it up, and then mount the front suspension, brakes, steering, etc. mount the wheels, and then roll the car out of the garage so that I can dis-assemble the lifting frame to make room for the rest of the final assembly. In another week things should start to get pretty exciting.

      I also finished machining the new cam hall sensor housing and it is all perfect except for the fact that the hall sensor itself seems to be dead for some reason (a new unit, go figure). So I have ordered another sensor and when I get it later this week hopefully I will be able to test it out and then mount it on the cam/engine ...

      There have been so many other small things that I got done over the past week: removing and re-installing a lot of engine accessories, putting the gaskets in place, applying sealant, threat locker, washers, etc into place and torquing things up so that I now am close to being ready to install the engine with all of the accessories already 'final' mounted next weekend ...

    10. 10-22-2014 02:14 AM #260
      I am getting closer and closer to installing the engine/trans into the chassis this weekend.

      New photos here: http://derekspratt.com/HTML/Automoti...ine_Trans.html

      New video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wSVMSuEQH1w

    11. Member
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      10-23-2014 10:52 AM #261
      Excellent!

      It would be fantastic to see it over the great canadian VW weekend here in Vancouver next summer 2015.

      www.gcvws.com

      Keep up the good work!

    12. 10-26-2014 09:36 PM #262
      Yesterday was the big day - getting the clutch setup done, and then assembling the engine and transaxle, rolling it under the chassis and then hoisting it into place. Everything went well except for the fact that I had to remove the rear engine/trans mount to get the side mounts to line up first which is a lesson learned, and I also discovered to my dread that I will have to mandrel bend the intake runners another 20 degrees or so to clear the hood.





      Lots of news photos here: http://derekspratt.com/HTML/Automoti...ine_Trans.html

      New video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a-buDxh4UJc

    13. Member Sk8rat's Avatar
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      10-26-2014 09:50 PM #263
      Quote Originally Posted by Derek Spratt View Post
      looks great!
      "Hi-fi Gods try so hard to make their cars low to the ground"

    14. Member vwovw's Avatar
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      10-26-2014 10:43 PM #264
      Very nice!

    15. Member
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      10-26-2014 10:48 PM #265
      Love it!

    16. Member ducatipaso's Avatar
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      10-27-2014 12:04 AM #266
      congratulations! big day! lots of work ahead still!
      click me
      wanted - blue GTI interior bits, must be perfect

    17. Member deepgrooves74's Avatar
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      10-27-2014 04:43 AM #267
      Do the intake runners clear your radiator?
      Someday I will drive this... Always something else to fix or upgrade!

      http://forums.vwvortex.com/showthrea...t-TD-SVO-Build

    18. Member
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      10-27-2014 09:19 AM #268
      Quote Originally Posted by deepgrooves74 View Post
      Do the intake runners clear your radiator?
      In the same vein, what sort of airbox is planned?

      (Looks great!)

    19. Member deepgrooves74's Avatar
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      10-27-2014 10:58 AM #269
      Quote Originally Posted by echassin View Post
      In the same vein, what sort of airbox is planned?

      (Looks great!)
      Exactly! I was thinking the same thing at that moment that I posted about the radiator...
      Someday I will drive this... Always something else to fix or upgrade!

      http://forums.vwvortex.com/showthrea...t-TD-SVO-Build

    20. 10-31-2014 01:54 PM #270
      FAIL

      I was quite excited when I read another thread on vwvortex about using Borgeson U joints ... so I ordered all of the required Borgeson parts and then found out this week that 35 degrees range of motion is not nearly sufficient for my 1983 Rabbit GTI now that I have the front end all together. I took a die grinder to them and got almost another 5 degrees of motion but they still bind. It makes sense that the Borgeson u joints will not work in VWs as they are far too closed/compact a design and cannot come close to the functioning of VW OEM u joints. $250 down the drain for me. Starting over now ... I will look into mk3 u joints (the upper end is the same as the mk1 ends) plus the idea of adapting the vw beetle u joints.

      I have only a tiny amount of play on one end of the u joints I have but I am being a perfectionist with this project, plus in the back of my head I have a gut feeling that I should not be stuffing 300hp into a 1700lbs mk1 without new steering u joints in the same vehicle ...

    21. 10-31-2014 01:57 PM #271
      So I have a hood clearance issue now that the engine is in place - I thought I had the math right, but ... another FAIL.

      I am using a custom radiator that sits under the front cross member so that is not an issue, but I didn't get enough curvature into the intake runners so they are 1" too high. I will either re-bend them or get new ones made. They are made from 1-7/8" aluminum thin wall tubing (45mm ID) which is available from my supplier but I need to find someone with a 3" radius 1-7/8" mandrel bending setup or at least source the dies so I can build my own jig to do this (actually my preference so I can get everything 'just right'). Arhh.

    22. 10-31-2014 02:02 PM #272
      Another issue this week was finding out that my new rear disk brake axle stubs were not machined perfectly so the outer bearings would not slide on. I thought I must have the wrong p/ns but all it took was 10 minutes with 600/1500 grit sand paper and I then got the diameters down to the point where the bearings would slip on without binding excessively. Hmmm. Such is the case with non OEM parts from time to time ...

      The front Wilwood 10.1" disks/4 piston calipers from Momentum Motorsports went on great and look super (I will post photos and videos of everything I have been up to this weekend) ...

    23. Member
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      10-31-2014 10:55 PM #273
      I know the feeling of having to use NON-OEM parts that don't quite fit just right. However, sometimes you have no choice with these cars!

    24. Member
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      10-31-2014 11:05 PM #274
      PS: Keep up the good work!

    25. 11-02-2014 07:21 PM #275
      It turns out that SMS found original OEM fabric for me, and did not remake it. There appears to be no more available. I am obviously super lucky but I really feel bad for making everyone else get excited about SMS supplying it. SMS did say that they continue to experiment with reproducing it. Fingers crossed for everyone that needs some of this material ... I do not have any excess material - sorry.

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