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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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 Post subject: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 8:53 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2012 11:56 am
Posts: 175
Location: Pemberton, BC
Hello,
its time to introduce myself to the group and at the same time start a build log. I've been on the forum for a few months, reading a lot and following many various builders' logs. Thank you all for sharing so much valuable information. I would thank many of you by name, but the list would be too long. Suffice to say, that many of my build ideas are rooted in your valuable contributions.
I live in Pemberton, BC, a small village about 2 1/2 hours north of Vancouver, BC; not quite the epicenter of car building, but the gateway to some great roads. I'm new to car building, and I never even considered myself to be a car guy, so I should qualify for "the deer caught in the headlights, what am I doing here" look. Maybe not quite. My recent background is aviation, and a couple of years ago I finished building a Challenger II, so the build discipline is something that I am quite familiar with. However during my build I proved without a shadow of a doubt, that I completely fail at KISS 101, thus turning an ultralight design into a real airplane. Four years and 2,500 hours (and a commensurate amount of $) of pure building fun. And I do have a bit of a car background, having raced at the old Westwood Mountain High race track. I'm dating myself here, but I started in the mid 70's racing Yamaha RD 350's and TZ 250's and then migrated to Formula Ford and finally a spec series, Honda Michelin. However, my incredible talents were sadly overlooked by the F1 scouts, and having spent all of my sponsorship money on a cup of coffee, I migrated into aviation. For many years I had too much fun competing in aerobatics and performing at small airshows in a Pitts, and I'm fortunate to tell the tale of too many risks taken. Being older, definitely not wiser, and having two precious daughters (4 and 9), I now find building to be as much fun as flying or driving.
So onto the build. As the title says, it will be a BEC, powered by a R1. As some others, I too was inspired by Jeff Underwood's build. For me it will be an "old man's" sportsbike, with 4 wheels, a roll cage and seatbelts; kind of tying together my motorsport past. It is a "donor less" build, since junk yards are a long way from here, and my search for a reasonable donor proved to be frustrating. The prices people are asking for Miatas is mind boggling. Anyway, I found my engine (a 2005 with 5,000 k) with everything I need for $900 about an hour down the road. The die was cast.
The car will be street legal, but bare bones, and other than maybe a track day, I have no competition inclinations. I have waded through the BC safety standards (and I thought aviation rules were obtuse) and it appears that a windshield is not necessary, thus eliminating wipers and defogger. I miss putting on my helmet, so this will be a great opportunity for the mighty Simpson to rise again (Snell 80 was leading edge. Ouch)
The frame will be based on the Haynes book; no tubing has been mutilated yet, other than for a number of practice projects, from fabricating tables to wood racks. The reason is, that I wanted to physically have some of the major components, and then build the frame to match. I've read the trials and tribulations with steering rack dimensions, and so I decided to get an Escort Mk 2 rack from the UK. As the book says, it is close, but not close enough. The pivots centers are actually at 575 mm, so I will widen the front by 40 mm; if the nose will need to be cut, that would be the lesser evil than shortening the rack.
I have a pair of R1 shocks ($ 25 ea) that I will utilize. I read all the posts about spring and wheel rates, and I think that I should be very close with a light car (I've calculated a wheel rate of 125 lbs/in with these shocks)
As I said, safety nowadays is a must for me, so I will incorporate a full roll cage. It may look goofy for the road, but I'm not going for the authentic look anyway. And this part of the world is about as far away from a pastoral countryside, where a minor shunt only leaves tire marks in the grass. Around here you either hit a big cedar, a big rock or end up in a canyon.
The rear end is still undecided; due to the need for a taller gearing, I will use either a Ford 7.5 solid axle with disks (but just today I was told that they are hard to come by; it may end up being a 8.8) or a Thunderbird IRS. Just sourced one this afternoon for $ 150. My gearing choice would be a 3.08 or 3.27.
The front will be Mustang II spindles, as they seem to be easy to get from various suppliers.
The rest will fall into place as I am going along. So far I have been working on the engine, installed an oil baffle and the Barnett clutch springs.
Thanks for reading, and I hope I can contribute in the future, so others may benefit from this forum just as I have.

Martin


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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 12:14 am 
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Always Moore!
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Joined: Fri Nov 09, 2007 3:40 pm
Posts: 3317
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Sounds like a good plan - welcome aboard.

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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:13 am 
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We are Slotus!
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Location: Tallahassee, FL (The Center of the Known Universe)
Yo, Martin!
Welcome to the group! Yours sounds like an interesting build, good luck with it!

:cheers:
JD Kemp

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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:09 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 9:39 pm
Posts: 296
Welcome from another BC guy. I was lucky enough to do a little aerobatic flying and kart racing (Westwood as well) too boot. I'm on the road now and looking forward to next spring........David


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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:06 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2007 1:21 am
Posts: 505
Location: North Van., BC
And again, another welcome from a BC guy. Also raced at Westwood, a little bit before you. Formula Ford, did you race against Stuart Goodridge or had he moved back to the UK by then? He was nice enough to send me a custom set of brake lines for my build :D

Have you looked at Airframe fixers non-traditional build? If not, I'm sure you'll find it interesting.

Ron

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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 10:59 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2007 6:04 pm
Posts: 1315
Location: BC
Nice to see another BC builder, welcome to the fun.

Al

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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 11:43 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2012 2:34 am
Posts: 285
Location: Niagara on the Lake Ontario Canada
...lots of Canadians on here... and no one has said 'sorry' or 'excuse me' once.....

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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 12:24 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2012 11:56 am
Posts: 175
Location: Pemberton, BC
Thanks for the warm welcome, guys.
I followed all your builds (incl airframefixer); all of them impressive and much to learn from.
David, Ron and Al, I'm sure we'll communicate more in the future (the BC inspection process is as clear as mud, just like the Transport Canada aviation rules, that I sweated over for 4 years), and maybe we get to meet in person someday. Maybe a get together in Pemberton? I might be persuaded to organize something, but only when I have a roller. (I need something to lean against something, when holding a foaming soda).
Ron, I don't think I know Stuart.
Gordon, around here we only use these words when trying to shove through the line up of tourists at the Squamish Tim Horton's. "Excuse me, local coming through!" "Sorry, you'll have to wait for the next fresh pot." :-)

Martin

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My build log:
viewtopic.php?f=35&t=14520&start=60


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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 5:34 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 9:39 pm
Posts: 296
Gblawson wrote:
...lots of Canadians on here... and no one has said 'sorry' or 'excuse me' once.....

Oops! Sorry, Sorry, didn't mean to miss that :oops:


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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:09 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2012 11:56 am
Posts: 175
Location: Pemberton, BC
Went to the Big Smoke yesterday and picked up my rear end (no, it's not sagging that much) and bunch of steel. Quite happy with the rear end; Ford 7.5 in with discs (but not limited slip) out of a 94 Mustang. After being told by several wreckers that they were hard to come by, I had sourced this one and felt quite good. However, when I arrived and had a closer look at it, I found the gearing to be 2.73. Hmmm? A bit disappointing. We had discussed a 3.08 or 3.27 over the phone. Oh, the manager says, that's what you want. No problem, we have lots of those. :BH: Come back in a couple of hours and we'll pull it for you. Got a 3.27 that looks like it came out of a demo that never left the lot. Appears that the original pads are still at original thickness. At $ 300, I'm happy.
Bought enough steel for the frame and some other projects. In my practice welding, among other things, I made a "Locost spec" firewood rack. It caught on, so now I have to make a couple more for friends. If this keeps up, the frame could be a while.
I'll be using 1 1/4" for the top and bottom rails (thanks cheapracer for the idea) and 1" for the verticals and diagonals. I did some practice welds, and I like the idea of more fillet welds. We'll see how it comes together.

Martin

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My build log:
viewtopic.php?f=35&t=14520&start=60


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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 12:20 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2011 5:19 pm
Posts: 320
Location: Stratham NH
Welcome.

I am well aware of the KISS phenomenon. I now believe you can't build one of these cars on the cheap unless you buy a complete donor in good shape and simply transfer the parts. I didn't come close to that. MGB front supsension rear end. Ford SOCH engine with webers and lots of fun and expensive accessories.

You're smart to wait on the frame until you have stuff in hand. I have done a number of mods to the frame having gotten parts after the frame build. Right now I'm dealing with the alternator which won't fit between the frame in front!

Again, Welcome

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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 1:12 am 
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Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 8:15 pm
Posts: 164
Location: Houston, TX
Welcome from another R1 builder! I'm curious where you got your baffle plate? I've found a seemingly reasonably priced source in the UK, but haven't been able to find one in North America. I would hope I'd be able to buy it on this continent cheaper than shipping one across the pond.


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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 4:42 am 
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Hi Martin,

I'm after a bit more info on your plane if you can spare a moment ....


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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:48 am 
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Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2012 11:56 am
Posts: 175
Location: Pemberton, BC
Thanks Andrew.
The baffle is the one from the UK. The seller is on Ebay, and I think his name is Martin Bicknell. I was lucky that my brother was working at the Olympics and he was able to bring it back. However, it was mailed to him in a stiff envelope, and I can't see that mailing it to the US would be very much.
The baffle is nice, but it still required a couple of hours of fitting; some of the holes didn't quite line up. Also, I did not like the section on the right only being supported by the bottom piece, so I fabricated and rivetted the little bridge at the top. Didn't want a little piece of aluminum go wandering off at 10,000 rpm and say hello to the conrods next door.

cheapracer,
anytime. Just fire away or send me an e-mail.

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Martin


My build log:
viewtopic.php?f=35&t=14520&start=60


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 Post subject: Re: Martin's Locost 7 R1
PostPosted: Sun Apr 07, 2013 10:00 am 
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Location: Pemberton, BC
Time for an update. Progress is slow, as expected, with kids' schedules and a multitude of other little projects that kreep up.
Some of the basic frame layout is done. Other than the arrangement of the tubing, it is not to plan, but to match my components and my ideas. The front is 40 mm wider, to match the Escort steering rack. This also eliminated the second kink in the lower frame rail. I've added another bottom cross rail and verticals. This will tie into the front of the roll cage, which I plan to mount to the top of the frame, at that intersection. The tunnel centerline is off-set 9/16" to the passenger side to center the drive shaft. The extra vertical at the rear is for mounting the trailing arms. It is not tacked yet, since the bosses need to be welded first; I figure it is easier to do on the bench than when in the frame. The same goes for the rear top cross rail. It will get the bosses for the seat belt mounts. I've also made the rear a couple of inches higher, so that the shoulder belt mounts would be above my shoulders. I could have planned on mounting them (wrapping style) to a roll cage cross bar, but I'm not quite clear on how that would be treated for the inspection. The rest of the frame is also 1" higher; this might be helpful with the engine installation.
Questions, comments and criticisms are appreciated, since I have a bad habit of wandering off with my ideas.
Thanks,


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Martin


My build log:
viewtopic.php?f=35&t=14520&start=60
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