VW mid engine Trike frame?

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Re: VW mid engine Trike frame?

Post by marcie10 » Sun Jun 01, 2014 8:47 pm

And the starboard side
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Re: VW mid engine Trike frame?

Post by Marc » Sun Jun 01, 2014 11:09 pm

Very nice-looking ride, about what I had been thinking of building for the last twenty years or so but never got around to. The one I recently purchased is similar in size and track width, but much less sophisticated. It doesn't use the extra transmission case - so the mid-engine, with upright fan shroud, is beneath the passenger seat. Both seats are therefore somewhat high up, but that doesn't present any problem since one needn't ever put foot to ground on a trike...and I have a commanding view of the road ahead. The frame is made of heavy tubing so the overall weight is ~1100 lbs, but it still moves right out with just a stock 1600DP engine.
I have an extended springer with Harley wheel/single-disk brake up front; the rear suspension is simply the complete setup from a `69/`70 IRS Beetle, mounted back-to-front so that it has leading diagonal arms; the torsion bars are set so that it's about 1 to 2" off of the snubbers at static ride height (depending upon passenger & luggage weight), so that the camber is slightly more negative than stock and when the chassis rolls in a hard turn the outboard snubber comes into play - IMO the handling is excellent, probably the best-cornering trike I've ever ridden even with the springer. There's not too much weight on the front tire, nor is there enough on the rears to make it wheelie-prone. It's not as visually pleasing as your "Swedish" setup with the forward-mounted engine - at present the only thing between my feet is a battery box, although I plan to use the space to mount a larger fuel tank this winter - but it still generates a lot of interest (and compliments). One thing I dislike is that the frame rails are right where you'd want dual carbs to be, so without some major surgery to the frame I'm pretty much limited to a single carb, but that's not such a big deal on a rig this light - even with no preheat, the flat spot on acceleration isn't unbearable. Right now the rear brakes are 5-lug Bug; while adequate, they don't offer a huge sense of confidence. I expect I'll be putting 944 rear discs on this winter, but for now I'm going to see how it responds to just going to Type III drums since I have an extra set laying around.

Update 6/05: I put Type III brakes on this morning (used the 22.2mm wheel cylinders rather than the 23.8mm) and they don't disappoint. I took a few measurements and I won't be able to use any of my Porsche rims until I whack off the existing fender mounts (fenders are required in WA). They all have too much backspace, even with 944 disc brakes I'd need about 2" spacers; I have them, but it'd be a waste when changing the fenders would cost less than the spacers are worth. Fortunately I have lots of different Type III drums/hubs, so I just slapped on some 5x205s so I can run the same rims for now. Just as well, I need the tall 205/70-15s for gearing and all of my Porsche 16" & 17" rims have much shorter tires.

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Re: VW mid engine Trike frame?

Post by EastCoastOffRoad » Tue Dec 30, 2014 2:22 pm

marcie10 wrote:The owner of BAT finally contacted me tonight. Seems he is working out of town now due to the trike business being so slow. I purchased one of the last few build manuals he still has available.

Do you still had the build manual?

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Re: VW mid engine Trike frame?

Post by rlazo325 » Tue Aug 23, 2016 9:28 pm

Hi, I'm new to the forum! I saw your Pics and I'm interesting in building a VW trike. I have a 74 beetle drive train. I need info on best way to build frame using the later CV axles. Is it possible....as to the early IRS axle? Thank you for your time, I do have more questions....hoping your account is still active!

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