LocostUSA.com

Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
It is currently October 20, 2018, 9:40 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Forum rules


Welcome to The Builders Logs. This area is for showing your current build/your completed car. Please only create a thread if you are currently building a car/showing off a finished project. Please do not create any other topics in this forum; any other subject should be posted in the correct forum. Please also only create one thread per user per project.



Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 33 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Jeff's R1 powered Locost
PostPosted: March 9, 2007, 12:56 am 
Offline

Joined: August 15, 2005, 10:13 pm
Posts: 7048
Location: Charleston, WV
Quote:
My Locost dream started back in 2001. Right about the time that CMC started advertising their basic frame kits in Grassroots Motorsports. That peaked my interest and I began to research the subject. I bought “the book” and read it cover to cover several times. Along the way I began to search for donor vehicles and powerplants. One of my first directions was using a 1st gen RX-7 as a complete donor. A friend had one of those that had been sitting (and not running) for a few years. He was willing to let it go cheap. Once I started researching the cost (and potential cost) of rebuilding a rotary, I was kind of turned off to the whole thing. Then another friend told me of a ’81 Corolla that his brother had that I could acquire for merely a case of beer. Well, that was easy enough, so I went and picked up the car. So that is it right?...read on…



I stripped the corolla down and pulled the 3TC and T-50 trans out of it along with anything else of value that I could use and quickly disposed of the carcass. The 3TC did not seem sexy enough, but I liked the idea of Toyota power. I happened across a guy that was selling the original 4AGE out of an MR2 and picked that up. It was considered one of the best little 4-cylinder engines for a seven type car at the time. Since I wanted disk brakes all the way around and a limited-slip diff, I happened across a 1st gen RX-7 rear that had both and picked that up. Another friend gave me a set of Mustang II spindles (for the price of simply pulling them off of the car) and now I had a good pile of parts to start with. Now all I needed was a kit.



In December of 2001 my wife and I picked up the CMC Stage 1 kit from the closest freight terminal and the journey officially began. Initially, CMC priced the stage 1 kits pretty cheap. Just over $2k got a frame, fiberglass, suspension bits, and most all the other steel parts on the car…shipped. Quickly I learned that it was not going to be an “easy” project. I was a little disappointed in the quality of the kit (get what you pay for…right) and some things did not fit too well. Additionally, the kit was based on “the book” which was based on a car that we can’t get in the USA. The parts that I had chosen were not going to work out well with those pieces either. It was probably a good thing, as I started discovering a few things about the design that made me want to rework a few things anyway.



The basic frame was good, but both the front and rear suspensions needed to have some redesign to work with the components that I had chosen to use and for additional strength. I strengthened the frame in a couple of places and angled the side rails to look more like the original seven as well. When I started this project, I was still shopping for welders and did not anticipate that much fabrication along the way…boy was I wrong. J



Over the next few years, I dabbled at the car bit by bit. It seemed that life and other interests kept getting in the way. If I had the money, I did not have the time…if I had the time, I did not have the money. And so on, and so forth. A project that should have taken a couple of years takes just over five…



Sometime during 2003 I got a chance to ride in a Locost that was powered by a Yamaha R1 motorcycle engine. It was one of the coolest things I had done in a long time, and it really opened my eyes to the whole BEC thing. The car was a rocket and we pretty much owned everyone that was sharing the track with us. When I discovered that I could shed over 200lbs of weight, 160hp, have a 6-speed sequential gearbox and buy a low mileage engine for less than it would cost to rebuild my 4AGE, I was sold. A fuel injected 2003 Yamaha R1 engine was purchased along with all the bits to run it with only 900 miles on it. A bike engine in a seven makes it close to being a sports racer, but with bad aero. J



The last year or so has seen me pretty dedicated to the project. Honestly, other than going to the track, I have sworn off all other interests until the car was done. And now it is about as “done” as it is going to get. It may be done, but there is plenty more work ahead. Now the car will enter the development stage and I will get to see weather or not my assumptions and designs are right or still need some more work. Also, I (hopefully) get to enjoy the car for a while. I enjoy the building, but dang it, I want to drive it!



Building this car has been a great experience. When I started it, one of the goals was for it to be a learning experience. It has definitely been that and more and I consider myself the better for it. Would I do it again? Yes!



Some folks ask “do you have any regrets?” or “would you do anything different?” I don’t have too many regrets because I feel that I did the best I could with the knowledge that I had along the way. If I would have gone back and redesigned every time I learned something new…the car would not even be close to being done right now. If I were starting fresh today, things would be very different based on what I know now vs. then. What would I do different? I would probably do IRS. I feel more comfortable about that design now as compared to when I started the car. I would probably use a Miata as a total donor (might still use a bike engine though). The Miata is probably the best single US donor for a Locost as far as I can see. Lastly, I would build from scratch and probably from a clean sheet of paper. I think that the end result would be even better.



Well, that is my story. Thanks for reading, and thanks for choosing me for BOTM. I feel honored to be in here with the quality cars that have already graced this section.



Take care,

-Jeff Underwood


Click on photos to see larger version.

Image

Image

Image
Image

Image

Image
Image

Image

For more information on his build see Jeff's website:
http://www.project-seven.goof.com/

_________________
He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.


Last edited by chetcpo on March 9, 2007, 9:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 9, 2007, 2:54 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: September 30, 2005, 1:28 am
Posts: 1242
Location: Sunny-Okanagan, Canada, eh?!
Wicked, wicked, wicked cool.

What did you make the grill out of?

G

_________________
The Lethal Locost
The Lethal Locost 2 - Even More Lethalerer


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 9, 2007, 3:15 am 
Credit well due.


Top
  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 9, 2007, 9:05 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: March 3, 2006, 10:48 pm
Posts: 1374
Location: Shawnee, Ks
I agree, it really looks neat. That engine looks right at home. Love the grill also, even better that mine. I would love to hear how you did it too, Russ


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 9, 2007, 9:37 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: April 11, 2006, 10:27 pm
Posts: 569
Location: Murfreesboro TN
Nice job. It is a credit to you. How does it run? Are you going to road race or Autocross or both. Thanks for sharing.

_________________
Graham,
www.earleymotorsports.com


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 10, 2007, 12:20 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: January 18, 2006, 10:41 pm
Posts: 349
Location: Concord, NC
Thanks guys. It is good to be close to declaring it "done". Seeing all the bits and pieces come together and watching all the ideas take thier final form has been pretty satisfying here lately.

The grille - I will be putting more details on the site soon...but briefly... Thanks to a tip from locostV8, I was able to find the center logo in stainless from a vendor in the UK. The rest is simply some 1/4" round rod shaped and welded together. There are four 1/4" studs welded to the back to attach it to the nose.

It runs pretty good...I have had it all the way up to temperature a few times and let the fan cycle on and off. Everything seems to be in order there. How it drives is another question...that will get answered tomorrow. It is making it's first outing at an autocross test and tune. This will be the shakedown for the car. In a couple of weeks it will be heading to VIR for it's first track weekend. I plan to capture plenty of video for you guys.

This car is primarily meant to be my track car, but initially I will be doing plenty of autocross events with it to get it sorded and find all it's quirks at low speed.

_________________
-Jeff

Project Seven
Instagram: @RexRacer19


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 10, 2007, 2:32 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: October 15, 2006, 11:15 am
Posts: 897
Nice car... Love the color.

Good Luck Tomorow :thmbsup:

Hope your planning to have a small report for us...
:lol:
Fred


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: March 13, 2007, 11:32 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: January 18, 2006, 10:41 pm
Posts: 349
Location: Concord, NC
Jawfish wrote:
Hope your planning to have a small report for us...
:lol:
Fred


You got it...check my post in the builder's log... :D

_________________
-Jeff

Project Seven
Instagram: @RexRacer19


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: June 1, 2008, 3:06 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: June 1, 2008, 1:52 pm
Posts: 118
Location: Victoria, BC, Canada
Very tidy and nicely thought out build. I commend you for the pre-thought and time spent building the car that best suits the intended use. Too often I see people moving forward without a plan!

Any updates on the performance and overall build now that you've driven it for a year?


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: June 2, 2008, 12:15 am 
Offline
Man of Constant Hazard
User avatar

Joined: February 20, 2006, 11:18 am
Posts: 3158
Location: Lexington, KY
Awesome, great, cool and awesome!!!


-dave

_________________
...nowadays people are so intellectually lazy and lethargic that they can't build ANYTHING with their hands. They'll spend hours watching whiny people marooned on an island, but won't spend a second adding anything to the world. -weconway
Visit my [Locost 7 build log]


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: June 4, 2008, 10:35 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: January 18, 2006, 10:41 pm
Posts: 349
Location: Concord, NC
Zengineer wrote:
Very tidy and nicely thought out build. I commend you for the pre-thought and time spent building the car that best suits the intended use. Too often I see people moving forward without a plan!

Any updates on the performance and overall build now that you've driven it for a year?


Thanks for the comments.

If you check the "Development" section of my build site, you can read the trials, tribulations, and success of running the car over the last year.

I have had the car out a few times this year and have done a couple of Time Trial events. I have run personal best times at each event, so the car continues to get better with the changes. I also switched over to running a used set of slicks that seem to help. I would love to try a new set, as I am sure there would be more time found there.

The car has been an incredible amount of fun to drive and has been pretty reliable considering it is a homebuilt. It also seems to get a good bit of attention at the track. Most people absolutely love the sound it makes ripping around the track.

_________________
-Jeff

Project Seven
Instagram: @RexRacer19


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: June 4, 2008, 11:09 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: June 1, 2008, 1:52 pm
Posts: 118
Location: Victoria, BC, Canada
R1 Seven wrote:
I have had the car out a few times this year and have done a couple of Time Trial events. I have run personal best times at each event, so the car continues to get better with the changes. I also switched over to running a used set of slicks that seem to help. I would love to try a new set, as I am sure there would be more time found there.


My experience is that what we often percieve as the car getting better and well sorted, is often the driver getting more comfortable and experienced. For many people there is a lot of untapped potential and speed that comes with seat time!

With that said, I know I'll never be the driver that a lot of my competators are, some of them are supremely skilled and beyond what I'll ever achieve. My only chance is that I can build a car so good that it makes up for some of my shortcomings as a driver.

I will read your Development page a little more closely, I spent quite some time on your page earlier, but there is a lot of information to absorb.

Cheers,
Zengineer


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: April 28, 2010, 12:20 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: January 30, 2010, 1:10 pm
Posts: 222
Location: Sacramento California
Jeff:

I love the build, have read your web site post by post and am intending to use a considerable amount of your techniques on my own build.

I do have one question that I have not found addressed anywhere:

Your roll cage build, how well did it pass inspection at any of the sanctioning bodies that you have had to deal with?
My only real concern is the way that you attached the roll cage at the bottom to the frame rails (the 90 deg tube welded to the plate).

I love the look of the cage and your attachment system and would use something along those lines to produce seperate track and street setups. Having the cage fully bolted in makes that much easier.

I thought that I would post this up here, as I am certain that there are others that have the same questions.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: May 1, 2010, 3:43 pm 
Offline
Weight watcher
User avatar

Joined: March 7, 2006, 6:15 pm
Posts: 2394
Location: Northridge, CA
And if we're on the subject of asking Jeff some questions, are you driving the car much lately or is most of the time spent on the Civic?
I really like the cage you built in the Civic. Very cool.

Cheers :cheers:

Moti

_________________
Moti

My R1 powered Locost build log

Visit the Blackbird Fabworx Facebook Page!


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: May 2, 2010, 10:36 am 
Offline

Joined: August 30, 2006, 10:26 am
Posts: 250
Location: Carmen, campeche, Mexico
Hi Jeff,
Outstanding build!!! I´m green with envy :wink:
I have just posted somewhere else that mounting bolts in shear for a roll cage are not desirable, but I´m totally uninformed about what the racing rules say.
Have you researched this?
Best regards.
AA


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 33 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
POWERED_BY