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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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PostPosted: February 18, 2020, 3:45 pm 
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after restoring many car , up to original and some resto moding , I decided to step it up a notch by building almost from scratch . the build from scratch is impossible in my jurisdiction , so I need a serial number to start with and wated something that's got style while being very quick . so I settle for a Berkeley SE492 ,
after 2 years of surfing the net and traveling across the USA to see one , I finally find one close by ( less than 600 miles )

brought the car back home and its as small as it can be.

the idea is to modify the car , while keeping it as light as possible , and that no modification would be visible from outside or very close inspection


Last edited by freezing14 on February 19, 2020, 9:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: February 18, 2020, 11:17 pm 
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Joined: July 29, 2006, 9:10 pm
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Location: Oregon, usually
Welcome aboard, freezing14. What mods are you planning?

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PostPosted: February 19, 2020, 1:39 pm 
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Location: Connecticut
I had not heard of a Berkley before and now we have 2 people building them!
Welcome and check out ccrunners build.

http://www.locostusa.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=19397

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PostPosted: February 19, 2020, 1:43 pm 
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I had did a lot of research before to see what other people had done , dealing with the impossibly small chassis
had seen a few version like the one here where the power is send to the back but to the detriment of losing the passenger seat . and I did not want that . also see a lot of car suspension, rear ends , drive shaft . to me and to Mr Chapman its way overkill component for the car .

as the original car did with 700 lbs , I decided to use parts from the largest ATV out there m that weight 800 lbs . so considering that those parts are meant to take a beating in the wood with heavily studded tires , they would surely resist the 4.5x 12 tires .
here is the day I picked it up , its was the leftover of 2 cars a gentlemen use to restore one to original


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PostPosted: February 19, 2020, 8:02 pm 
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Very cool! I look forward to seeing how you to your restoration progresses in comparison with ccrunner’s build (link above). Looks like your son is ready for you to be finished, so he can drive it :).
-Eric


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PostPosted: February 20, 2020, 5:59 am 
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Joined: December 24, 2007, 5:11 am
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Location: Seattle area
Now the fun begins! Might check out Car Builder Solutions catalog. They are doing a Berkley build with a lot of ideas.

Cheers!

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PostPosted: February 20, 2020, 6:33 am 
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Good plan!
I recommend a manual gear select over CVT and Honda, Kawasaki, or Yamaha over Polaris just because of the cost of parts and lack of support for older models. Most small shops that work on atvs have their own little junkyards in back from people who didn’t want to pay for repairs. Talk to the service manager. You may want to build piece meal for the diff and axle then use a different engine/gearbox for a fraction of the cost of a good running complete atv.

You could use a shaftdrive motorcycle with an large atv irs diff and small fwd car high mount rear steer spindles all around and an aftermarket sliding center buggy rack with an offset tie rod mounting plate to put the rack pinion where it needs to be. Very tidy.

FWD, RWD, or AWD?

I suggest getting a title if possible and registering what you have now before adding off-road parts.

Also checkout 2stroketurbo on youtube. He has one that is in worse shape that he just titled in Oregon.

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PostPosted: February 20, 2020, 11:16 am 
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I will be posting a few in a row as I have been working 8 months on it and lots have happens since I started

so suspension and drivetrain . ok so I settle for the ATV suspension and driving gear.
the biggest issue here is that 95% of all ATV have a locked rear diff , which is not really the best for driving dynamics . so whats the option , being I did not want to do a car diff , I went with a front diff of a TRV1000 ATV , the beauty of this set up was that the front and rear bearing and half shaft are identical front to rear, so using front diff with the rear axles would fit on the rear hubs with zero modification required . this would in turn allow to keep the complete assembley light and should be sturdy enough for the intended weight of the car .

added bonus here , the diff has a mechanical lock tab , that by pulling on , it lock the diff . so it give me flexibility in driving dynamics . its not a limited diff but you cant have it all

and here having the direct fit to the standard rear hubs , I can use the double A arm set up from the ATV rear as it was an independent suspension , bonus 2 , off the shelf component .

but how wide is it compared to the original track width , see picture , about 1 CM inboard each side . will be easily fixed with a different offset wheel


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new rear end spacing.jpg
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spacing 2.jpg
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PostPosted: February 20, 2020, 11:42 am 
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ok its all great to have a new light rear end and well designed suspension , but how am I going to send that power back there while maintaining a second seat .

if I use a motorcycle engine with a sprocket , the chain and jack shaft is an interesting solution but the diff is 90 degrees from the power . and that chain is a maintenance nightmare , long, sloppy , noisy and where the ..... am I going to run it from front to back . that Berkeley is incredibly small and low to the ground .

or if I use the same sprocket engine and use a drive shaft , well again here , is where is it going to go without sacrificing the passenger seat , could keep it low , with a cover but again , it take a lot of room .

so I settle for what seems to be the hardest solution , a Torque tube , originally used in the model T in flex format , but I was also very familiar with that design as I had a few Porsche 944 before . I liked the 944 layout as its compact , but for my application I would need to redesign . it essentially a small 1 inch shaft in a 2 inch tube with bearing supporting it

in the Porsche design , the engine is up front and the transmission ( or correctly named transaxle ) are connected with a torque tube that is fixed ( it does not move up and down like in the model T ) so making a fixed one would be a lot easier than a moving one

so what if I used a drive shaft bike and connected the coupler at the rear of the motor to the torque tube center shaft, and run the center shaft directly to the diff . well this works , the angle of the connector is less that 10 degrees and the outer tube of the torque tube

see picture


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torque tube 2.jpg
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torque tube 1.jpg
torque tube 1.jpg [ 192.88 KiB | Viewed 2152 times ]
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PostPosted: February 20, 2020, 11:54 am 
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so it looks like its gonna work but here comes the engineering part of it

what size of inner shaft , outer shaft , the bearing and the U joint to connect to the diff ( the great green part)

a 1 inch shaft would be able to handle the power, may be my only overkill but had no choice .. more below
a 2 inch tube that could be made structural and would sit low enough in the car to not be in the way and provide safe transfer of the power .

the big thing here is , its easy to get a 1 inch ID bearing , but the OD's have only a certain number of permutation and finding the proper id tube proved to be the challenge here , everyone sell 2 inch tube , but if you ask for 2.00" ID tube you have to do a lot of phone calls and traveling to go and measure to make sure the bearing will not be light or loose and that will sell you just 6 foot and not a MOW of a truckload . I ended up finding a supplier of DOM tubing that had the correct size and was not charging an arm and a leg

for the u joint , same here , nothing connect to the half u joint to something that will hook directly to the 1 inch shaft . a trip at the farm supply store got me a unit that would fit the shaft but was too small for the u joint

well here I had to bite the bullet and send it to a machine shop to have the yoke hole bored out and centered


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PostPosted: February 20, 2020, 12:03 pm 
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but how am I going to connect the engine to that fixed tube . I could lower and sideway a sprocket engine and try to match the other end of the torque tube . or use a drive shaft engine and line it up but the lining up would be impossible . so whats my solution

see picture

what do you think ?


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PostPosted: February 20, 2020, 1:21 pm 
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Do I get it right? You have a 1" solid driveshaft? Have you checked your design for critical speed? I would be cautious. If needed, you could add a center bearing to increase the critical speed rating.

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PostPosted: February 20, 2020, 2:35 pm 
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Hi there , Well I taught of that , the whole torque tube assembly is 50 inch long and I have put a bearing in the middle as I was sure it would have wobbled because of the length.

the setting up of the center bearing was pretty tricky .

as the whole ID of the tube is just right for the bearing , pressing in could have worked and you would expect it to stay but in order to make sure , I made 2 cylinder with heavy wall about 3/4 " long , so that they could be screwed from the outside to lock the bearing in place on each side . it was the positioning that's tricky as you have to push it just right and rotate it line up the hole , so I made a special tool to insert them .

I made everything allowing for easy replacement once the car is assembled , I will try to take picture closer


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PostPosted: February 20, 2020, 2:46 pm 
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What is the harm in asking for opinions along the way then doing what you want anyway? Since you ask (though it appears to be a rhetorical question):

Another issue is that you have a single ujoint operating at an angle. The shaft speeds up and slows down with each rotation. If you don't match the angle with another joint on the other end, the speed changes will cause vibration.

Another issue is the ujoint is operated at an excessive angle. No more than 3 deg is the rule of thumb.

You can fit a ujoint upfront and change the shaft height and at the same time eliminate the short chain or fit a cv at the rear.

On the shaft tube, you could have bought standard size tube and fit a reducer in the ends. The reducer could be more of the same tube, split to cut some out and rolled to fit inside the oversize tube as needed. No machining required.

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PostPosted: February 20, 2020, 4:53 pm 
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sorry I was kinda late posting compared to when it was done
I was not aware of the single u joint rule . I will have to look into it , thanks for the info
I did quit a bit of research on the u joint angle and it all seemed to be the lower the better , but I had seen on some off road / jeep site with angles up to 20 degrees but they have 2 joints and they don't goo 60 mph either

yes you are right , the idea of the regular tube with an insert would have definitely worked , likely cheaper and a whole lot easier to find


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