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Kev says you have to go silly or don't bother - challenge accepted - weekend car....


ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
With the old engine cage on you can see how much rear ground clearance we've gained from pushing the engine forwards and the dry sump kit - this used to have the top tube level with the rest of the car:

Should stop us smashing the sump plates around at places like Kirton. Well, not as much, anyway.

As you might notice, the radiator has moved....some daft buggers pushed the engine so far forwards that we've had to lift it slightly and tilt it up to let the fans flow and get the piping's not ideal this, moving the CoG higher with the engine and the radiator...but cooling and not exploding engines is taking priority.

A cheapo chinese intercooler fell off a nearby shelf, so that got quickly plumbed in and we made the new radiator mounting brackets and fan shrouds at the same time. The supercharger and inlet manifold adaptors are just cheap and cheerful folded boxes for the moment, quick to knock up - not great, but easily changed later for something better.

And yes, that was seriously the only place we could get the alternator in, there was nowhere else to run a belt, I even considered it on the other end with a pulley off the back of the flywheel.
So, a bit of a heath robinson solution....the aux belt drives the supercharger...and the supercharger drives the alternator:

It's all getting a bit tight in the engine where the hell do we put the intake airbox?!

Well, only one space left, just above the gearbox, behind the seats and underneath the radiator airbox:

And a mahoosive filter:

That's having to share the airbox feed from the radiator/roof scoops at the moment just for simplicity. Not entirely perfect but shouldn't be too bad.

Ripped out the old dash and knocked a new one up to make room for some extra instruments - boost pressure, etc, etc.

And started on the electrics:

Now, we've run out of room in the engine bay, there no room over the gearbox, the suspension takes up shedloads of room at the sides....and we have nowhere to put the oil tank.
The only place that looked remotely feasable was behind the engine - not great if someone hits you up the arse...but the rear cage is T45 so should take a bit of a, one very strangely shaped dry sump tank:

Not ideal for a tank, but it's got internal baffles and de-aerator in the top, seems to work okay.

Okay, onto the one thing we've been ignoring. If you push the engine that far forwards, you affect your driveshaft and CV angles. And with the amount of travel we run, you don't have any spare CV angle - we run right on the limits - in fact, worse, we run 0.01mm undersized balls to prevent binding at large angles, all the tracks are carefully polished, we have to run modified chromoly race cages and stars to locate the balls to stop them cracking under the pressure, etc, etc.
We give driveshafts some SERIOUS abuse. To get enough plunge out of them we not only have the balls plunge in the joint, but we have 4" long splines and the shaft itself slides through the star, and the entire shaft is waisted like a torsion bar and made out of maraging spring steel - it'll twist almost 80* from one end to the other and still spring back without bending or breaking, to absorb the shock loads - which are enormous, even if you stuck your Clio on slicks and gave it 500bhp you wouldn't get close.

Now, that's a fair wall of text, so TL:DR - we abuse the hell out of even incredible driveshafts, and we've just moved them beyond their limits. Oops.

Now, there's two ways of fixing this - find some joints that will do more angle (none that also plunge enough), or move the CV's to make the shaft longer so the relative angle is lower....

Now, if your CV joints are bolted to the back of the do you do that?
Well, first is you make a wheel hub...a really big wheel hub. With a hole in the middle. Think polo, but less minty.

And then you make two even bigger bearing carriers....

And since your brake discs don't bolt on the back like your old VW're going to want a brake bell....stopping is generally nice idea sometimes.

And now you have a whacking great hub assembly where you can push the CV joint all the way through the middle right up to the wheel face, where it drives through this little hardened steel spider to the wheel:

Anyway, enough hub porn, back to scrapyard bits.
We need more fuel. Some idiot has strapped a massive Eaton M112 to the side of the engine.
We could buy new injectors, but we have old RX-8 parts...

Twin fuel rails it is then!

And finished up the sump tank:

...and then ripped it all out again.

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ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
Of course, if you now have very shiny billet rear can't really fit them to your old welded up we moved everything out to get to some of the inner mounts and modified things for a mockup, as the shafts were so much longer now we could also have more travel at the rear....I reckon that should be enough...

Drilled some rail stock and welded some tabs on so the injectors could get some go-faster juice:

Some fairies came in overnight and paneled the airbox in:

...and then realised that getting the hoses through a grommet was impossible so bulkhead fittings made and welded in, along with a header tank to feed the radiator:

And a breather tank for the oil:

Space is starting to get even tighter now, so some stainless and ally heatshielding required around the exhaust:

The alternator adjuster is a bit tight too....will have to waist it down later:

And yes, overall...don't drop any spanners in the engine bay, because they sure as hell aren't coming out of the bottom:

Anyway, then it was on with mocking up the side scoops and rear bonnet:



ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
Next stop spaghetti junction.

I hate wiring. I really, really, really hate wiring, but I can do a decent job of it so I cracked on and just swore at people a lot.

Okay, we had the hub and bearing carrier for the rear, but obviously you need some form of upright to connect it to the trailing arms, nothing fancy here I'm afraid, just nice and cheap, a flat piece of 6082-T6 machined to take the tube ends, to keep the machining time down.

May also have started anodising parts...everyone knows anodised billet parts add 10bhp each - plus it gave me an excuse to avoid the wiring:

And here you can see where the CV joint now fits:

And started mocking up some new arms, a little longer for more consistant geometery, and a bit wider because racecar:

And then out with the string, lasers and rear geometery jig:

Wasn't helping trying to work on the gravel floor in there so down to the proper workshop it all went:

And some new wheels fell on from a customer car, unfortunately we couldn't find any with enough offset so that's a problem for later.

The new arm revealed one stumbling block after being cycled - the existing rear geometry gave massive toe change with the extra travel we were intent on using, and nothing beneficial either. After hearing Ed swearing about it for a while I had a look and decided to just re-do the mounting points on the car and make another new arm - I've been wanting to alter some of the rear geometery for a while, so there's really no better time than when you're making a new arm.
We've removed a little of the rear camber change, and lifted the outer pivot to help with the toe curve, which now has about half the previous toe change over the travel and what is there is helping rather than hindering now. As a side bonus that brings the anti squat up a little closer to where I'd like it, and lowers the rear roll centre which should help with a little more traction/grip.
Cheap and cheerful jig to swap the pivot location over to the other side of the car, nothing fancy but it works:

And then made some new version of the new arms (you'll see this theme a lot, we always end up making things 3 times...)

It also put the nodes in line with the rear bumpstops, so it made the bumpstop area on the arms much neater and lighter. Free weight saving!

The damper mounts were a lot simpler too:

We ended up about 4kg per side lighter than the old arms and hubs too, even with being wider and longer.


ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
Now, whilst we'd always made our own wheels previously - because then we could use thicker barrels than most cars use, and steels are easy to beat back into shape, it's a rather long and tedious process to keep everything true and straight, and they were much lighter than the usual wheels used for this kind of thing, which tend to be made with Dakar in mind and weight about 13.5kg each - our steels weighed about 9.5kg.
However, we found some Shogun wheels that look pretty strong, have enough offset, clear the breaks and weigh 8.5kg, and they're cheap, so they're going on.

Only downside? Ugly as sin. Mud will fix that though:


Both sides finished:


So, we started putting things back on again:


I made some new rear brake discs, upsized slightly to 320mm rather than 300mm, same thickness though:



Bit of a tight fit!


ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
...remember those temporary boxes for the manifold and 'charger we were going to get it running on then sort later?

Yeah, they annoyed us too. Begone!

And then we started beating panels:

And it turned into K9 from Doctor Who:

You can see our patented CAD system in use there (Cardboard Aided Design).

And....then we stripped it all out again...



ClioSport Club Member
  850 T5
Measure twice, cut once, then again, then trim it a bit and voila! I imagine you can get that back end stripped down pretty damn quick now?

Is this based on a farm by any chance... all the workshops look suspiciously like our workshop! (wooden axel stands aplenty!!)


ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
The little one was, yes, just some container sides welded up around a bit of drainage pipe with some gravel shovelled in on Ed's farm!
I used to call it orthapedic gravel because it made sure your knees ached evenly all over.

The other workshop is an ex farm building we built, but it's not part of the farm any more, we rent that from the farm that now owns it - we've a lovely floated epoxy coated concrete floor in the front for setup work and cars that need to be clean and shiny, but the buggy is just shoved in the back with the fabrication gear out of the way.

Rule of thumb - Measure twice, cut once. Stand back, scratch head, cut something else nearby, remake first piece, remake piece you cut off....


ClioSport Club Member
Don’t forget measure for a third time, wonder if it will work, cut an expensive piece of metal, then realise you could have designed it differently and it would work better if redesigned so you’ve now just got a rather expensive scrap pile

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ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
"Why did you strip it all this time?", I hear nobody ask!

Well, the clutch cover plate has a diagphragm in it that's about twice the strength of an OE SX200 cover, and we had to shorten the clutch arm slightly when we moved the 'box forwards.
Upon trying the pedal when we had everything on the original cable setup, it quickly became evident that you either need to wear your underwear on the outside before driving, or have the ability to become big, green and angry.

Now bearing in mind this had a 2600lb pressure plate fitted to it before - which wasn't exactly easy to drive (an OE road plate is about half that usually), then that should give you an idea. Maybe shortening the clutch arm wasn't so clever after all, the cable was really struggling to cope with a lot friction and sticking.

Okay, so easy fix, switch over to a hydraulic system and eliminate all the cable friction, so, one very dodgy clutch pedal knocked up just for testing, to allow a master cylinder to be bolted in:

And then we fitted a Wilwood pull cylinder to the arm on the gearbox - it worked, far smoother, still heavy, but I can deal with heavy so long as it's smooth.
So, the next thing was to make up some new pedals, and try as we might there was very little room to fit on in on the pedal setup that was in there, and the only way to manage it was to make the pedal go over centre through it's travel - which is poor from a feedback/ergonomic point of view - the last thing you want if trying to feather a heavy paddle clutch.

Anyway, we cheated, got a great deal on a pedal box from a man that retails Tilton stuff - we've used it before in customer cars and it's always been decent - so we swapped to a shiny underslung pedal box (we both prefer the feel of top mount vs floor mount boxes - I know, floor mount has lower CoG - I'll let some air out of the tyres to compensate)
Only problem is, it's a bit taller than a floor mount...doh.


The old front cross came out and since the beam has altered and there's no need for support for the torsion leave ends (we binned them a while back too, it just runs rods through with bearings now to hold the arms in) this time it went to the corner nodes to help chassis stiffness, as we lose a little by lifting the centre of the cross rather than it being straight.

New pedal mounts went in:

And the if you look at the previous post we put some new diagonal bars in under the seats.

The reason for this is we landed on a big rock over a jump at one event, and it punched a hole through the floor armour, and popped the fire extinguisher loose.
We repaired it all, fixed it back in, and went slow over the jump the next time on that stage, only to find the rock was gone - Hoorah!

Someone had punted it down to the next corner over a blind crest. This time it hit under the seat area, punched a hole through the floor again on the drivers side, and just tapped the seat and made someone wear the brown pants when he saw it in service.
So, the floor had some extra 5mm thick wear pads added...and now it has T45 bars under the seats too. :D

Right, onto more shiny things, this arrived:

A lovely, shiny Penske 2-way adjustable damper canister. I'd like to thank a certain Mister Plato at this point for crashing, bending his suspension, and this being the only salvagable part from that corner of the car, which meant I got it mucho-cheap from his mechanic (no, not that dolt advertising the Clio in the other section!).

Now, if you love expensive, beautifully machined suspension components, look away now, because 5 minutes later I butchered it:

Then there was a horrible accident involving a pillar drill, some thread taps, scotchbrite and some extra bits fell in, but they're top secret, sorry.
To make up for it, here it is back together like nothing ever happened, I'm sure it'll recover with some therapy.

Did a load more wiring for a while, added a few more cheap gauges and switches, swapped the warning lights out for LEDs, loads of little things basically that added up to many hours more of swearing at wiring:

And with a bit of power on the dash wiring was all finally finished:

So that got left and back to something less irritating....if you altered and lifted the front cross, your bonnet no longer, off we go again:

Ignore the steel box, it's just to hold the front square temporarily whilst welding on the hinges.
A new floor was made and fitted since the old one had the aforementioned battle scars and we made up a new front bulkhead to suit the new bonnet and pedalbox too:

Hmm, that steel front wheel looks out of place now we have alloys on the back, right?

...maybe we should change that too, that'll be simple, right?


ClioSport Club Member
Absolutely love this thread!

People nowadays think air-ride a a massive engineering feat

This just s***s on other people’s “builds” from a tremendous height!

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ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
They bought air ride, have some sympathy, they obviously have issues ;)

Anyway, front wheels. Easy job right, buy the narrower Mitsubishi wheels from the smaller model, make an adaptor, slap them on, right?
Well, no, that was the initial idea, but if you skim back you'll see we have these nice Wilwood magnesium-alloy wide-5 hubs fitted on the front:

...and they have a big cone in the middle to get to the bearing, and the 'wide-5' VW fitment is called that for a reason - where we needed the mitsubishi wheel studs to be was right where the wilwood writing is.
Because of that, any adaptor spacer would have to come out to miss the cone, and past that by at least 30mm or so to get the meat in for the studs and allow access to the bearing grease nipples.
Which means by the time the wheel was on with the spacer, the front track would end up about 150mm wider - definately a no go because it'd fall off the side of the trailer if nothing else...:D

Okay, so, we sat down with a coffee, let wayyyyy to much caffiene get into our brains and 30 minutes later I was drawing things - if the hub won't work with a spacer, lets make our own hub!

At this point we should have gone home, slept on it for a week and realised this was a bloody silly idea to let us change wheels, but instead our brains sabotaged us by whispering "Shiny Billet Aluminium! Bigger Brakes! Anodising!" and off we go....

One enormous slug of aluminium went on the lathe and shed more pounds than a Weightwatchers group after Christmas:

And also made the most overengineered centre cap ever:

Well, it's not quite so overengineered, it works as a spigot to centre the wheel too and the outer bearing is right out on the end there - I widened the bearing spacings to make the assembly stiffer/stronger, and switched bearing sizes out for metrics rollers rather than the wierd half metric/half imperial things the american Wilwoods used at £eyewatering.99 each.

Okay, the other issue with the old hubs was you had to take the entire upright/hub off to change a disc, as they bolt to the back of the hub rather than sandwiched between the wheel and hub like modern stuff. We didn't have room to move to that system because of the size of the kingpin on the upright, so instead I made some bells that bolt on the rear, and then the discs bolt to those, which means the discs are just large enough to be unbolted and lifted over the front of the hub now in case a fast swap is required:


And we'd got some old broken/damaged Wilwood Midilites from a customer car sat collecting dust, so I stripped them, repaired the damage, and rebuild them with new seals and a set of anti-knockback springs.
Unfortunately, compared with the tiny little 2-pot Dynalite things we had previously (when I say tiny, the brake pad is 1 inch square....) - they needed thicker discs to suit their wider bodies,....time to make more discs again...

Also, we got some vital, groundbreaking performance additions to keep our caffiene levels just above sane levels:

Knocks 10 seconds off the Zero-to-StrongEnoughToDissolveTheSpoon time for most good teabags.

Remember my brain shouting "WE CAN DO SOME ANODISING! WHOO!"
There we go:

Oh, we swapped the calipers around as the Hispecs fitted better on the front, and the stiffer/shinier Wilwoods now live on the back.

Finished sealing up and waterproofing most of the engine loom:

Right, what can we butcher next?
That old Peugeot steering wheel looks a bit tatty compared to all the shiny things...where's the grinder?

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ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
In the true spirit of making everything as complicated as possible and fabricating loads of bits you don't need, the venerable 106 steering wheel had it's heart ruthlessly chopped out via angle grinder, the splined steel centre boss extracted, turned down, and welded to a bit of tube.
An hour with a bit of sheet steel, pillar drill and the angle grinder for some scallops later, ta da:

Due to having to TIG the old centre spline in it's all in steel, so no shiny anodised ally things today for you all. Terrible, I know - I'm sorry.
I think that's -5bhp for lack of anodising and -8bhp for not being able to say 'Billet Ally!' when talking about it.

Remember that huge 'because racecar!' rear wing on the sketches?
A barn door fell into my CAD software:

And a nice bloke on the Isle of Wight with a similar road-going buggy had just bought a wee 3d printer, so he made me a load of spars, I still owe him mucho beers:

So a reworked some sketches to suit scale-wise:

I'm just going to run with a two element to start with as the front lift with the mudguards means there's a massive imbalance, more on that later though.

Also, launch control appeared:

Not that it's much use as the surfaces change so much, and we can't do active control because it lifts wheels off the floor and makes the system panic, so it's bascically just rpms vs elapsed time through 2nd gear and then turns off until reset.
To be honest it's mainly there to troll a few certain £100k cars on the startline that don't have it with a "Look what we have!" - and then don't use it the rest of the day ;)
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ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
Right, we now have very shiny hubs:

But the upright they're mounted to is half knackered.
If you notice in some of the photos the front left wheel has noticably more camber than the right - that's because the kingpin on that side keeps pounding the needle bearings out - it's a little worn and that tiny bit of plat results in the shock loadings being like a hammer to the bearings.
It also doesn't help that the standard VW design uses just some plain steel washers as a thrust bearing so the steering gets sticky under high loads.
It's been like it a while, but we've just popped new bearings in every 6 months or so - as there wasn't much we could do at the time without a lot of work.

So, if you've made shiny hubs, it's a bloody silly idea to put them on wobbly uprights.
The kingpin came out, I had a measure up, and it turned out that if I bored out the upright by ~0.5mm, and skimmed the kingpin down by 0.05mm, I could fit some slightly larger metric needle bearings with a heavy preload to take out any slop/hammering effects, and whilst I was there, I opened up the face the steel washers sat against and popped a proper bronze/delrin thrust washer in there.
The kingpin took ages because in order to skim just 0.05mm, I ended up actually sanding the bloody things in the lathe with ~1200 grit, so I could sneak up on the perfect fit - I don't have any fancy tool grinders!


Much better.

Oh, the water header tank got re-made too to sit a little further forward so it was easier to get the spanner on the oil-pipes in-situ:

Then some new joints on the rear torsion bars/secondary springs, along with some new bushes - bronze/PTFE split bushes in a housing this time instead of phosphor bronze that they had before, mainly because it's about 80 pence when it needs a new bush then and just pop one out and one in:

I'm hoping we can ditch those secondary bars shortly and save a good 10kg of weight, because we don't really need them with the new suspension over the years, but at the minute it's nice to have the adjustment whilst we get everything dialed back in.

It was around Christmas by then so we did our Rudolf imitation with everything refitted and the front wheels on:

Now, since the engine bay is very, very, very, very, very tight, we need to get a lot of that hot exhaust air out before it melts wiring, belts and alternators. That means hours and hours of making louvers:

Skidpans went on too - 6mm thick aluminium plate for the transmission - which goes forward under the beam tube/seats and is overlapped by the main floor for a while so it's even thicker there.
The transmission plate also overlaps the engine plate when that is fitted so there's no leading edges anywhere to dig in - making the underbody armour half an inch thick in some sections - it still takes a beating mind, but it stiffens the overlap laterally to stop it bending upwards too.
The front beam and front section of the floor gets it's own piece of 6mm plate too - and this time it extends out past the front bulkhead, wraps up around the front beam and up a few inches to prevent the beam digging in on a nose-hard landing/drainage ditch crossing - and helpfully acts as quite a substantial front splitter/tea tray to reduce front end lift to try to work with the new rear wing.
Unfortunately it doesn't look this shiny for long!

Also masses of thin panelling around the CV's, etc, etc, to keep as much mud and debris out of the engine bay as possible.
I know, the rear of the floor is a mess, a friend decided to join in and lend a helping hand for a weekend and, well...we'll fix it later.

Couldn't afford a CAT scan to check the discs for flaws, so went for the cheaper alternative:

He said they were a bit Ruff.


ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
Right, we've gone from beating everything in a hammer in a shed with a gravel floor to making way too much shiny stuff, so let's get back to the normal cockups
- basically the hoses were a little close to hot spots for comfort, even with heat shielding, mainly because they'd been made few mm long by the supplier, even with a template hose supplied, doh.
With such short, wide hoses getting rid of the extra length meant routing at quite an angle into some of the fittings, and it also meant the dry sump belt was difficult to access - not something you want in the field - especially since we'd since made a fancy alloy cover to keep it protected:
Anyway, chances are the hoses would have been fine but after this amount of time an oil fire is not the way you wish to discover that they weren't...

That knocked on to shifting a few bits and pieces (exhaust relocated if you're eagle-eyed) - by removing the right rear frame support tube, and shuffling of the oil filter mainly - although then I decided I didn't like it anyway, so then it got moved again to completely under the engine now there's room due to the exhaust shift. And then it meant remaking panels that were already done, so the right side panel got remade, again:

It's just awaiting some good old-fashion hammer bashing to roll the top over the tube. You can even see my christmas decorations up on the wall there.
And the front of it was also remade to accomodated the shifted exhaust pipe into the silencer:

I'm gonna quote the next bit verbatim because I think I'd been on the whisky that day:

Today we see the lesser spotted Hermit Filter in it's natural location. Generally shy and lacking in mobility, this little fella finds a nearby engine and ducks underneath, using the sump for protection. Upon finding this safe location, he quickly hooks into the oil lines and then filter feeds on debris and dirt in the oil, providing a beautiful symbiotic relationship that helps the engine live longer.
That cute blue exterior hides some defences though - attempting to remove a Hermit Filter - even one that has only lightly screwed itself to it's new perch - often requires the services of Popeye (or alternatively the Left Hand of God, if he's around at the time) and unfortunately the trouble doesn't stop there.
After freeing the grip of the tenacious Hermit Filter, it borrows a trick from the aquatic world and aims a stream of hot, black oil at your hands, eyes, the floor, the walls and, for some inexplicable reason, the cream living room carpet.
Even if you've removed it in the garage, 10 miles away from home.
It's an incredible defence mechanism really.

And some louverly (yes, I went there, sue me!) new vents:

Nothing really fancy since they're on the sides in terrible airflow anyway, just enough overlap to stop the wheel flinging mud in them, and big gaping holes to get the exhaust heat out.

And then, finally, just before we stopped for a break over christmas....



ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
And just because I'm not completely evil, here's the first fireup, complete with whistly air leak and having to hold the throttle open to idle :D



ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
Okay, so, why is the engine in a billion wee pieces?
Well, it turns out that the reason our engine was in the scrapyard, was there was a tiny little hairline crack in the main oil feed gallery - someone had either overtightened the oil pressure sender or had fitted an aftermarket tapered one instead of parallel at some point.
We tried welding it in situ after much cleaning and grinding out of the crack, which worked to stop the leak....but the distortion from the welding pulled the block away from the headgasket slightly so the headgasket leaked instead. Bugger.

Anyway, whilst that was apart for a complete rebuild and the block was away for grinding back flat, we cracked on with a few other bits - the old 5-piece rivetted and glued roofskin was made into a lighter, welded single piece effort. Much cursing and hammering was heard in the process. Sounded easier than it was, ripples all over the place to start with.

Bonnet got finished off and the upper roof-intake got reworked too:

Roof scoops aren't cool until you have a roof scoop on your roof scoop.

Now, the engine issue wasn't totally a waste of time, as we discovered the crank thrust washers had picked up and were also shot, even though the end float was fine and the engine sounded okay running - it's a bit of an issue with '09 F20C's:


So, I ordered new OE thrust washers, but to be honest, they weren't finished very well out of the box, so I hand prepped them all and moly coated them, much better:


And obviously polished the crank where the pickup had occured before, then the roundy-roundy bits went back in:

And the uppy-downy bits:

And her little red hat back on:

And then I used some of my terrible Paint skills to try out a few paintscheme/louver options, this maybe I think:



ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
Just like everything else on the car, we decided to go nice and discrete with the louvers.....and promptly made them massive and lots of 'em.

It's no good having big air intakes if you can't get the air out - you won't flow any air, you'll just stall the intakes and spill air over the side. I think we have enough outlet area now.

I know the scoops and vents seem overkill, but at some events if you're on peat or clay, the car will sink in 5-6" inches and it's like permenantly trying to drive the car up a massive kerb - you can be full throttle using every single horsepower and can't clear 30mph, and obviously that's a lot of heat with low airspeed, hence large scoops and big cooling fans.
At the faster tracks I'll just tape a couple of inches of the scoops off.

The old Renault to 108mm lobro CV adaptors that go into the 'box were pretty tired after years of abuse so we made a new set of those up:


The engine was back up and running...time for ancillaries....cardboard aided design turned into plastic aided design:

And it got bigger:

and bigger:

And...wait, we forgot to remake that crappy supercharger inlet! Damn it.

There we go:

The bracket and tube are for the throttle, it comes in on the near side, pulls a lever with a shaft through the tube there, and then a lever with a short cable on the other side pulls the quadrant - tricky to get to otherwise.

Tidied up some more of the plumbing at the same time with clamps, etc:

Then made a small wing using the 3d printed spar for the nose, balsa I used for mockup got replaced with alloy tubes:

Skinned and foam filled awaiting endplates:

And it'll have to wait now until we can switch to cycle wings up front to give it room, but that's for after it's actually done a few events and had a shakedown.
Back to the rears then!

Now, I know it's pretty heath robinson - the much less labour intensive way is to have a foam core cut and laminate over the top, but this way is cheap and you can do it at home with basic tools, I like cheap.
It's not completely agricultural though - I did check things first:

And one completed:

No, your eyes aren't going, it really is fuzzy, it's the cloth/fabric skin.
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ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
We're not finished yet on the updates but this might take a slight deviation tommorow because I've just finished a lot of other bits and fingers crossed if I bolt them on time I might get chance for a bit of tuning/mapping work, so there might be a video from it's current state stuck in the middle all being well :D


ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
Well, no video, ended up chasing down some wiring gremlins from a dodgy dashboard switch, bugger. On with the story then ;)

Anyhow, remember that shitty dry sump kit we were having issues with? Well, I shorted all the mounts and straightened everything up so that a shorter belt fitted, but it still wandered side to side on the pullies when it was running - the larger pulley wasn't machined quite true.
So, being rather annoyed with it by now, I ripped them off and we went fancy...cue a set of self-centreing herringbone gears from the local bearing shop, which also run quieter with less vibration and are much more debris tolerant:

...can't be leaving those pulleys like that can we? Where's my CAD program...

...a bit of yellow chromate and some of Homer's 'speed holes'

I reckon that's a winner without going silly on machining time. Best get it made - onto the lathe!

Bare pulleys all machined up, awaiting brazing and plating:

More odds 'n' sods ticked off the list, this time it was the Magic Box of Ultimate Power!
Has those electrikery pixies inside. Aligns electrons in the wiring. Obviously that means it's worth at least 30bhp.

Alternatively, might just be a soft starter and fan speed controller - to reduce the massive electrical load spikes when the fans fire up (they pull 80amps at initial startup!)
Your choice. The pixies are more fun.
It also means they can be left on low speed just to dissipate engine bay heat in the pits, instead of going flat out SO YOU CAN'T HEAR. CHECK WHAT? THE FANS ARE STILL ON, I CAN'T HEAR YOU!

Small pulley got brazed up - the heat required discoloured and burnt off the protective layer of oil on the surfaces - which mean the cast iron on the pulley rusted before my eyes where my fingerprints were - not much good even for mockup, so I raided my cocktails bar (Careful what you drink in my house
)....back in black and shiny again, crisis averted

Anyway, enough pulleys for a while, they'll go off to plating later on as the front bumper and some other odds and sods need doing before paint.

Okay, we we fillered and flattened the bonnet off earlier, with the intent of taking a mould from it to make a lighter fibreglass replacement - a friend nearby was going to sort it out for basically just the material costs - as he has a firm doing fibreglass parts and has large enough autoclaves, etc.
Unfortunately he ended up too busy to do it for personal/health reasons so we put that one aside for later and dragged some more ally sheet out to make a replacement.
We could have used the old one but there were a few tweaks we wanted to make and it had a good couple of kilo's of filler in it because we'd let the panels bow when welding, and we're picky, so, drag out some more scrap sheet. You know we love making things 3 times....

And then loads of little fiddly bits followed like the rest of the pipework/plumbing being measured up so any temporary bits can be replaced along with getting the proper brake lines in, and machining for fitting bleeds to the fiddle brakes, welding in chassis lugs to secure everything to, etc, etc.

Oh, and remember I said that replacement dry sump pump had a bit of play in the nose bearing? Well the vendor was a waste of time, so I just stripped it myself, if you've ever wondered what the internals look like in one, they're nothing fancy:

Now, whilst the vendor was useless, I will say the guys who actually make the pump - AT Power - were great, and when I got in touch about it they offered to have it picked up by a courier, stripped and fixed and returned the next day at their expense even though it was bought from a 3rd party - but I'd already got it apart by then and it was literally a £3 bearing that wanted swapping, so I just grabbed one, checked everything over, lubed it and popped it back together.
It looks like it'd either been on a demo one with the belt way too tight or stood on a shelf with something heavy against the nose because it was just a brinelling mark on the bearing, nothing else.

Anyway, back together and sweet as a nut:

Whilst we stripped things down again to weld fittings and tags on, we did some reinforcing to the cage to help stiffen things up and make it safer in a roll, just in case, gussets going underneath it in the cross to spread the load, and means she meets next years (this was a year or two ago) reg changes for french events and rallying, just in case.

Downside - no mince pies this christmas!
Gusseting in:



ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
Right, we got the brakes hooked up with the new parts but the 'CNC' brand fiddle/turning brakes turned out to need rebuilding yet again - seems to happen with alarming regularity - so decided to sack them off and make our own (can you see a trend yet?)



Bulk ordered grinding discs to make the, back to parts we made earlier:

Oil pump pullies came back from the platers:

Perfect fit.

And now we have a shiny steering'd look better with some shiny paddles behind, no?


Steering rack was kinda worn, it doesn't have any adjustment or bushings, just runs on the casing, so I modelled the whole thing in CAD to see where I could mount some proper bearing slides, nice and tight and far smoother now:


Remember we'd finished off the new dashboard and wiring?
Remember it's only the 2nd one we've made?
Remember we like repeating things three times?

New dashboard:


...and back to rewiring and making all the switchgear up again....sigh.
Best active project on here so far man, what a joy to read. Jealous of mechnical and technical knowledge. I can do a bit of modelling and 3d printing etc, but metal/engine work - nope!


ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
Thanks, glad you're enjoying the read.
I probably should have put all the info in for the original engine swap to the rotary, etc, but you'd be reading for days :D
I've missed a lot of the smaller stuff out of this latest bit to be honest, otherwise it'd be twice as long.


ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
Now, since we can't see the rev counter because - a) It's behind the steering wheel paddles and b) The new mounting ring around the steering column fouls it - then we started the search for another, smaller one.
After several versions of sticker shock and not liking some of the cheaper tat available - which seems to be aimed at getting as many lights as possible in and the crap fonts that you can't read in the dark (Fast and Furious has a lot to answer for) - the next best thing came to mind.
Mount it in the middle of the dash and move the fusebox.

All well and good, unfortunately the ECU is behind the dashboard in the middle at the bottom, and at the top is the windscreen wiper mechanism, and the tachometer is almost 5 inches deep. curse word.

So, out came the screwdrivers and the soldering iron, the original dial came to pieces, got modelled up in CAD to move things around, and the internals have been shortened, moved or rearranged and re-soldered.
Next step is to machine a new case out of a bit of 5" aluminium pipe and some sheet in the scrap pile, et voila, one half height rev counter:

Should have just fitted a bigger bloody shift light and left it off...

Followed by this a few weeks later:

Okay, plan B, seen shiny things, want them. Fitting a big bloody shift light and sacking it off

Anyway, finished off most of those pesky hydraulics, brakes, steering, dampers, etc
Ed said I can't put pictures up as the damper interconnects are top secret (remember that Penske canister earlier? Yes, I've interconnected the dampers hydraulically - it's like an ultra low budget version of that FRICs suspension that got banned in F1) and the hoses are neat and far too sexy (actually, I think he must just have a rubber fetish and wants to keep the pictures).
So here's the pre-watershed pixellated version - cor, look at them blue pixels!

Mounting frame in the front there has the fuel pump and filter under it and it's mounted on rubber bobbins to the chassis, to stop pump damage/wear from vibration and impacts.
As we'd cut out and move the front cross, there was now nowhere to mount the power steering shuttle valve to, hence the fancy aluminium cross, that picks up on the old cross tubes on the other side of the bulkhead.
We use a valve and shuttle out of a Peugeot 306, cut it apart, then weld the shaft and housing up so it can be used as a standalone piece with a shaft on the end instead of the pinion gear, that shaft then goes out of the front bulkhead down to the rack. The ram is Peugeot 405 unit, and the pump has been 106/Saxo electric units so far.

A few downsides - the 106/Saxo units have a penchant for dying, they weren't great in the stock cars - the minute they had a bump it kills them - and obviously we have a lot of bumps.
Another is that they run flat out all the time, drawing about 40amps or more, which is quite a decent electrical load, and power sapping, especially with twin 16" fans and lights, etc, are running too.
Next issue, running flat out against the pressure valve all the time mean considerable heat build up in the fluid - and as you can imagine, our PAS fluid gets some stick anyway, so sometimes it'd boil and fade.

So, as you might be able to see above, we've swapped over to a different unit, it's a Merc roadcar pump with mosfet control inside - but we've fitted an aluminium tank for cooling reasons, and the control box has been sealed and waterproofed, along with some changes to the electronics to make sure it puts out full assistance (in the car it's variable with roadspeed).
Advantage is it's 2kg lighter, more compact, and because it has active control, it varies the pump speed with the load against it, so on average in use it only pulls about 20amps with the odd spike to 40a. It also has an idle mode if the car is just crawling along in the pits, queue, or parket up for example, where it drops to just a few amps.
So, less power stolen from the engine, cooler running alternator, lighter, and less heat in the fluid. Sorted!


Yes, you know how I said we have to remake everything three times? Turns out some portions of the engine loom had only been done twice....sooo - things got modified, as along with the new 'shift light' came a switch to solid state sensors, yep - even more wiring fun - the engine loom got stripped to swap bits around, and the main loom too to match the engine side and alter things to match the new dash loom. And we now have enough wire in the main loom to power a small town. It's really enjoyable this wiring stuff, up there with having your toe-nails removed with pliers.
Anyway - here's the new 'shift-light':

It's a pretty large shift light, I'll admit.
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ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
It's great so far, it's clear and bright enough that you can read it from nigh-on 90 degrees until you can't physically see it any more.


ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy

It's all there, trailing arms front and rear, transaxle, rear engine, spends more time in the garage than moving - it's a Beetle in spirit.


ClioSport Club Member
  406 V6, Race Buggy
Adapting main engine loom for the new sensors, which are all 3 wire rather than the old 1/2 wire ones for the guages:


And reworking the main car loom to suit the new dashboard loom....when I said there was enough wiring in here now to power a small town....


Also, shiny new gearstick and gearknob arrived ;)

Mounting on the left there is for the ECU.

The old alloy bulkhead fitting would only go on the wiring with the connector de-pinned, which was annoying, so I printed a 2-piece one that clips together so it can be fitted afterwards:


Waterpipe no longer needs the fittings for temperature sensors, as it's now read through the 3-pin unit on the CAN to the dashboard, so for the sake of 50-100 grams in weight, you'd just leave the old sensor screwed in, or a bung in the fitting, and use the old pipe, no point wasting time and effort to make a new one to save un-noticable amounts of weight.

So, here's the new one:


In my defence, it's slightly thinner material too so it saved even more weight. And it gives a bit more room for heatshields.

You know how we made a new set of fiddle/turning brakes?
Well, we're planning on fitting new seats shortly, and on measuring them up, they'd foul the brake lever, so the frame got remade a little shorter but wider, and in tube rather than steel sheet, mainly because it was faster:


Also fancy new fitting to feed them. That was made with a pillar drill and an angle grinder....CNC mills can bite me.

And then started putting things back in, new paddles behind wheel, dashboard, brakes, etc:


Re-made the front mudguard mounts to get rid of the extra steel tube and make the mounts internal instead of external, just tidies things up and they're lighter:


We have power!



Might have got carried away with the holesaw on the brakes and gearlever.

New side panels and new door/window frames - the old ones were pretty battered and the polycarb was heavily damaged and scraped - you could barely see through it by now.



And, if you've read this far, well done, you're pretty much up to date as to where it is from this weekend, I've skipped a lot along the way so have some random pictures I've missed just from this engine swap - if I start posting all the rotary ones too we'll be here for days: