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Burrito Dork
10/18/16 11:17 p.m.

In reply to Ransom:

I would say it took less than two minutes to do the actual forming, but I had to stop three or four times to let the compressor catch back up. I'm guessing that the HF gun isn't exactly efficient when it comes to CFM usage.

This test bore good enough results to warrant a few more dollars thrown at the problem, and a nicer gun might just be the answer.

slaab New Reader
10/19/16 12:04 a.m.

I'm very happy to see this project up and running again. You're practically made out of time with so few vehicles to keep running. All the best.

NOHOME PowerDork
10/19/16 5:49 a.m.

Whats with the gap in the form about halfway along the groove?

Not to hijack the thread, but another way to play the game when making floor board repairs is to use the brake. Here I am trying to copy an MGB floorboard.

Wish I had a real 5' long brake, but this little cheape gets a lot of work done,

Bit of reverse flow-forming required to "cap" the ends of the channels

Burrito Dork
10/19/16 8:43 a.m.

In reply to NOHOME:

The gap in the bottom plate is there so I can have intersecting beads running perpendicular from each other if need be.

NOHOME PowerDork
10/19/16 9:20 a.m.
Burrito wrote: In reply to NOHOME: The gap in the bottom plate is there so I can have intersecting beads running perpendicular from each other if need be.


Burrito Dork
11/1/16 5:25 p.m.

It's been a busy couple of weeks and I haven't had much time for the Fiat.

Bought a little pickup to haul some steel, motorcycles, and broken down Fiats.

Made some parts to reorient the blade in the bandsaw so I can rip longer stock.

Still needs some fine tuning, though. The honeymoon is kinda over with the portaband and I'm ready for a larger, dedicated vertical machine.

I poked some holes in the first member and got it located and tacked into the car temporarily and stuffed the shifter assembly into the tunnel.

Then I plopped the seat into the car and stuffed stuff under the back of the rails until the base felt like it had the right amount of layback to it.

At this point I sat in the car and made noises. I think this is the first time the car has had a seat, shifter, and steering wheel in 4 or 5 years. It doesn't handle very well; rear end feels loose. Almost like it's supported by one jackstand centered under the rear suspension pickup points. Hopefully it is a little better planted when it's done.

Burrito Dork
11/1/16 6:42 p.m.

So, the next part of the shift linkage conundrum is the thing that actually needs to be shifted. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the veritable Porsche 901. Considerably weaker and marginally cheaper than its big brother, the 915. Since I bought this 901-2, originally from a 912 I believe, prices have gone berserk. Luckily, I bought a 914 unit around the same time. The 914 unit is the backup plan, should the 912 piece ever suffer catastrophic failure. You can convert from a sideshift to a tailshift easily enough, provided you have all the pieces.

Even though prices have gone up considerably since I bought these, I was too frugal to pay fair market value for a known good item almost two years ago. The 912 transaxle came from fellow GRMer Nashco and was a real bargain at around $250. The reason for the steep discount was twofold; it was of unknown origin and NashCo had gone rooting around in it in his youth and had gutted all the shift rod detents.

Naturally, he had the most NashCo reason ever. He was going to build an airshifter for it.

NashCo was kind enough to supply all the necessary parts to put it back to factory and Jumper K. Balls forwarded enough documentation to help me along my way.

I didn't take any photos when I was rooting around in there, partially because of the focus required to not berkeley it up, but mostly because everything was covered in gear lube. It all went very smoothly and gave me a real confidence boost for future transmission related endeavors.

Since I had the transaxle on the bench, I figured I should give another one of the many elephants in the room a little attention. How the berkeley will I ever make the Fiat speedometer play nice with the Porsche transmission AND account for those mahoosive 15" tires?

Electrons, that's how.

Burrito Dork
11/1/16 7:21 p.m.

The Internet can be a cruel mistress. Years can be wasted dredging through decades old forum posts trying to find the most obscure information imaginable. Other times, you pop onto eBay, find a part that says it fits "GMs and VWs", shrug, say "well, it's $21 to find out, innit?".

I mean, the Porker trans is essentially a VW box with another gear stuffed in it, right? Right!

This little guy helps Chevy guys run older transmissions in more modern vehicles that would typically have electronic gauges. It's essentially a retrofit vss. It also happens to have the same threadpitch and diameter as a Porsche 901 speedometer drive.

So, one GM 16k pulse per mile VSS and one Porsche speedometer drive unit.

The issue is driving one with the other. Both have a male drive portion, so a little berkeleyery is required. The VSS has a square drive that fits snuggly into a .125" hole.

The Porsche half of the equation after some trimming and very, very careful drilling. Have you ever drilled a .125" hole 1" deep into a part you probably can't afford to replace? With a hand drill? No wonder I never make any progress on these stupid projects.

No joke, I have close to an hour of my life invested in that little hole. rimshot

Obviously, I would love to have broached that hole, but obviously that's a bit beyond the scope of a guy in his shed. Luckily adhesives have really come a long way in recent years.

I have some production equipment held together with this stuff at work, and it is absolutely incredible. Without saying too much, millions of miles of product has relied on this adhesive in a similar arrangement and it has yet to fail. Hopefully this will be much the same story.

I gave the trans "The Full Arthur Fonzarelli", and am quite happy with the outcome. It might get the JTHW8 treatment at some point, but it's going to be hard to go back, now that I've gone black...

Tune in next week for more double entendres. Maybe even some Fiat progress?

RossD UltimaDork
11/1/16 9:06 p.m.

Great work!

Woody GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
11/1/16 9:34 p.m.

I continue to love this thread.

Stefan GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
11/1/16 9:36 p.m.

I came here for double entendres and Fiat updates and you're all out of Fiat updates....

moparman76_69 UltraDork
11/1/16 9:42 p.m.

Italian car, Japanese engine, German transmission. This car is truly the axis of evil.

Crackers Reader
11/2/16 1:13 a.m.
Burrito Enthusiast wrote: Offered up a quick patch. It's misaligned here, I know, I fixed it but didn't bother taking another photo before welding. The "welding spoon" (it's a piece of copper pipe I crushed in a vice...) is there to keep weld from extending above the two flanges.

This alone was worth reading through the whole thread. Nice work.

I had a 128 project in high school that went the way of Italian car projects owned by high school kids in low income families. LOL I still sometimes dream about what I could have done with it.

ssswitch Dork
11/2/16 8:32 a.m.

That retrofit VSS is very slick. I bet you could probably delete problematic mechanical-drive speedo cables with it.

Boxy02 New Reader
6/23/17 1:46 p.m.

Resurrecting this most-impressive 850 coupe build... Is progress still being made? Very innovative and inspiring work done so far!!

Burrito Dork
6/23/17 2:49 p.m.

In reply to Boxy02:

Not at this time, no. It is officially on the back burner.

The electrics in my garage are bad enough to make any welding a no-go. And since we're looking to sell this house in the next 12-15 months (or sooner), it doesn't make a lot of sense to spend the time and money on running a new service from the (completely full) panel in the basement to the detached garage. The only welding I can do at home at this time has to be done on the back patio, and there's no getting the shell back there, unfortunately.

I'll come back to it eventually. The good news is the car is still kept dry and safe, along with all the goodies I've collected for it. In the meantime I'm keeping busy playing with motorcycles of various vintage (and very, very rarely the Fiat 128 project) and continuing to increase the houses worth, the latter of which will hopefully translate into a bigger shop at the next house.

I'll be back, it just likely won't be in the next 12 months.

Ovid_and_Flem HalfDork
6/23/17 3:24 p.m.

I had an 850 spyder back in college. Years ago.

Fun fact: when you run off road into a lake they float. Happened to me, we hopped out and pushed it back to bank, got in and drove off. It never stopped running.

2nd fun fact: 8 drunk college guys can pick one up and put on top of a 3 ft high cinder block wall after a night of drinking.

Pete Gossett
Pete Gossett GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
6/23/17 4:17 p.m.

In reply to Ovid_and_Flem:

I'm not the least bit surprised to hear this story from you...

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