Ghia Road Course Setup

For road racing, autocrossing, or just taking that curve in style. Oh yea, and stopping!
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eskamobob1
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Re: Ghia Road Course Setup

Post by eskamobob1 » Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:55 pm

FJCamper wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 12:07 pm
I believe we're talking about two different things, street vs racing applications.

For street, you can do whatever you like, because weight jacking, suspension balancing, and quick ride height changes are not a big factor.

Just lowering a Bug 2" front and rear really transforms it.

FJC
I apologize, I should have clarified. Though I do likely drive my bug far tougher than I should on the roads, I am still talking road use and not racing. I do realize this is a predominantly racing focused thread, but you seem super knowledgeable and experienced on the topic, o i hoped I could pick your brain.

Basically where my question comes from is that i have heard that lowering a bug about 2.5” and adding a front damn pretty drastically improves aero and does benefit handeling, but upon measuring my current suspension height I became concerned about the significantly decreased rear suspension travel from such a lowering (I currently have about 2 1/2” of rear travel until I hit bump stops, so even cutting down the stop I would only have like 1/2” of upward travel no matter how I went about the lowering). I have thought about moving to adjustable plates no matter what for better fine tuning, but now I am questioning the use of drop spindles (can only find 2.5” drop) and lowering the rear

So I guess what my question comes down to is, what is the minimum rear suspension travel you would be comfortable with on your cars, and on a road car respectively? Changing things such as the torsion bars and shocks to achieve these are totally fine btw, so you aren’t limited to stock

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FJCamper
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Re: Ghia Road Course Setup

Post by FJCamper » Sat Aug 11, 2018 3:25 pm

You don't need a conventional airdam up front that gets knocked off by a standard curb. There's a work-around.

Way back in the mid-70's, in the IMSA Sedan series, we ran a '73 Super and were not allowed any aerodynamic add-ons. We did a 2" lowering by cutting the front springs and reindexing the rear torsion bars. That Bug, like our current LeMons Blitzwagen, could run 125mph+ top end and got unstable sometimes. For instance, on the Talladega Super Speedway we'd have the rear end tracking higher than the front end, and if a butterfly flapped its wings at us just right, the whole car would lift and fly forward and sideways a few feet like a stone skipping across the water.

Our cheater trick was to attach two sheet metal air deflectors under the car, to the frame head, so they came together like a arrowhead, tip forward. We told the tech people they were guiding air to the brakes. And they did that. But they were also an effective airdam.

For suspension travel, you want to keep six inches from the pavement to your floorpan. You need to cut half of your rear "rubber snubber" suspension stop off to give you more travel. Every inch you lower your car is an inch of travel you lose. That's why we limit it to two inches, street or race car.

Now, contrariwise to the whole issue of lowering is what we experienced in the 2007 XXth Anniversary 2000-mile Carrera Panamericana road race in Mexico. Road race. Not desert. We ran a fully-roll-caged 1965 Ghia. Our competition was Porsche 356's, 1600 BMW's etc. We made four podium finishes (that's 1st, 2nd, or 3rd) out of 7 days, because we were out two days with a busted transaxle, and we still finished 3rd in class.

We ran the Ghia stock ride height, and stock suspension. EMPI oil shocks! The lowered cars were busting low-profile tires, shocks, you name it, going pedal-to-the-metal on good and bad roads. We proved a good stock setup, at race speeds, could beat race setups, on public roads. We would not have beaten them on a closed-course race track. But in real life, we excelled.

FJC

eskamobob1
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Re: Ghia Road Course Setup

Post by eskamobob1 » Sat Aug 11, 2018 7:23 pm

FJCamper wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 3:25 pm
You don't need a conventional airdam up front that gets knocked off by a standard curb. There's a work-around.

Way back in the mid-70's, in the IMSA Sedan series, we ran a '73 Super and were not allowed any aerodynamic add-ons. We did a 2" lowering by cutting the front springs and reindexing the rear torsion bars. That Bug, like our current LeMons Blitzwagen, could run 125mph+ top end and got unstable sometimes. For instance, on the Talladega Super Speedway we'd have the rear end tracking higher than the front end, and if a butterfly flapped its wings at us just right, the whole car would lift and fly forward and sideways a few feet like a stone skipping across the water.

Our cheater trick was to attach two sheet metal air deflectors under the car, to the frame head, so they came together like a arrowhead, tip forward. We told the tech people they were guiding air to the brakes. And they did that. But they were also an effective airdam.
Ah, very clever way to go about it. I had thought about possibly fabing up a bit of a diffuser but I was kind of worried about limiting airflow to the engine too much, but maybe that just isn’t a real worry. As for your super, is there by any chance somewhere I can read up on the specs of it? I’m kinda currious about your wheel size and transmission choice tbh. I have been heavily debating a 914 tranny and type 4 swap for a while now and I’m kind of currious if I should maybe move down a bit in tire size since I shouldn’t realy be worried about top speed anymore (though that’s something I can probabaly answer myself with some more readerch into how type 4s behave)
FJCamper wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 3:25 pm
For suspension travel, you want to keep six inches from the pavement to your floorpan. You need to cut half of your rear "rubber snubber" suspension stop off to give you more travel. Every inch you lower your car is an inch of travel you lose. That's why we limit it to two inches, street or race car.
Duely noted. Tbh, I kind of wish I could find drop spindles for more custom heights than just the standard 2.5”. I think a solid way to go may end up being a minor drop and smaller wheels for the complete lowering, but either way, I’ll have to play with this idea quite a bit more.
FJCamper wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 3:25 pm
Now, contrariwise to the whole issue of lowering is what we experienced in the 2007 XXth Anniversary 2000-mile Carrera Panamericana road race in Mexico. Road race. Not desert. We ran a fully-roll-caged 1965 Ghia. Our competition was Porsche 356's, 1600 BMW's etc. We made four podium finishes (that's 1st, 2nd, or 3rd) out of 7 days, because we were out two days with a busted transaxle, and we still finished 3rd in class.

We ran the Ghia stock ride height, and stock suspension. EMPI oil shocks! The lowered cars were busting low-profile tires, shocks, you name it, going pedal-to-the-metal on good and bad roads. We proved a good stock setup, at race speeds, could beat race setups, on public roads. We would not have beaten them on a closed-course race track. But in real life, we excelled.

FJC
That is a very good point tbh. While most of my driving is on nice roads, not all of it is and I shouldn’t forget that. I wasn’t planning on slamming it anyways, but rougher roads will certainly effect how much suspension travel I need. Tyvm for all of the help. Looks like I have a lot more to go off of when researching further now

eskamobob1
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Re: Ghia Road Course Setup

Post by eskamobob1 » Mon Aug 13, 2018 6:27 pm

Image

Just a question out of pure curiosity. Do you by any chance remember what size wheels you ran on the B-sedan supper? From that picture it kinda looks like you are running wider in the rear than the front, but I cant honestly tell for sure.

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FJCamper
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Re: Ghia Road Course Setup

Post by FJCamper » Mon Aug 13, 2018 6:56 pm

That's our Herbie.

5.5x15 VW "Sport Wheels." Front and rear sizes were the same. We didn't have the budget for extra wheels and tires, so the front and the rears had to interchange.

You can see our floorpan air deflectors, but can't judge the angle of attachment, the middle of the deflectors point forward.

You can see our six-pass oil cooler behind the grill. It was fed by an adaptor off the case top, with a HP1 Ford racing filter inside the cabin just behind the driver's seat. The cooler was so effective we had to tape it off in moderate weather. The oil filter location was common for some pre-turbo 911's which was what I copied.

I've gotten a lot of criticism (now, not then) for feeding the filter and cooler off the case adapter, but it worked well on a 26mm stock oil pump. We have a saying here at RetroRacing. "If its stupid but it works it's not stupid."

We had an 1835 with a SCAT C65 cam with 40mm venturi 48IDA's. Herbie would fly and mopped up on the MG's and Triumps at SCCA, but we could not beat the factory Datsun B210's in IMSA.

We had German ATE disk front brakes and drum rears. We used custom-riveted NASCAR rear shoe material, Australian Repco front pads, and had all the brakes we needed. A hot rod clutch shop made our rear shoes and our racing clutch disks.

FJC

Bruce2
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Re: Ghia Road Course Setup

Post by Bruce2 » Fri Aug 17, 2018 7:43 pm

eskamobob1 wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 7:23 pm
I have been heavily debating a 914 tranny and type 4 swap for a while ....
You should find someone with a 914 who will let you drive their car. You have to decide if you can cope with the goofy shift pattern, and the crappy Porsche design synchros.

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Piledriver
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Re: Ghia Road Course Setup

Post by Piledriver » Wed Aug 22, 2018 11:29 pm

The shift pattern you adapt to pretty quick, but learning to shift slowly and deliberately takes more effort.
I switched to an automatic. shifts more or less instantly under load. (late t3 so more or less bolted in)
I, for one, regularly embrace our new robot overlords, as I am the guy fixing the robots...

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andy198712
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Re: Ghia Road Course Setup

Post by andy198712 » Thu Aug 23, 2018 4:56 pm

Piledriver wrote:
Wed Aug 22, 2018 11:29 pm
The shift pattern you adapt to pretty quick, but learning to shift slowly and deliberately takes more effort.
I switched to an automatic. shifts more or less instantly under load. (late t3 so more or less bolted in)
does it need the auto oil oil pump?

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Piledriver
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Re: Ghia Road Course Setup

Post by Piledriver » Fri Aug 24, 2018 11:09 am

I used a t3 003 automatic, its a true automatic, not the auto stick the t1s got.
The 003 has its own oil pump.

For a T1 or Ghia the 914 trans is a better plan, as it fits a lot easier.
The automatics would need the frame horns extensively modded or cut out.
I, for one, regularly embrace our new robot overlords, as I am the guy fixing the robots...

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andy198712
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Re: Ghia Road Course Setup

Post by andy198712 » Fri Aug 24, 2018 3:23 pm

got ya!

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