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phydough
04-07-2016, 12:25 AM
I purchased a 1978 fl250 that was mostly disassembled. I thought it would be a good project for a low price. I drove 4 hours to get it and was expecting to get a train wreck.

When I picked it up I was surprised at how many parts there were. I also immediately saw some repairs I was hoping I would not have to perform.

I will take pics soon.

What I got:
Full chassis
Motor
Full drivetrain
Straight axle
Straight wheels
Functioning brakes
Functioning parking brake
2 good front tires
Completely intact front tub
Complete lower airbox
Complete upper airbox
Steering wheel functions
Suspension is not seized.

The bad....
The origional cage is bent
The front j-arm mounts are bent.
There are some dings and a little damage to the frame.

Why did I buy this?
I really don't have much money but couldn't pass up a 100 dollar price. I do however have all of the tools to do any work.

Why did I want one.
When I was a little kid I wanted a gokart soo bad. Me and my dad built one and I was out tearing up the woods when I heard a loud buzz and saw the coolest thing come flying past me. Ever since then I have wanted one. Here I am 30 years later and I finally got one. I have built some very high end projects and owned a fabrication business for many years. I am currently an engineer for a large automotive manufacturer. Finances are tight due to a few years of battling a major health issue.

My plans are to spend as little as possible to polish this turd.

I will attempt to straighten the front beam, but may end up disecting it and widening it about 2+ each side. I have played with the idea of adding rear suspension, and have all the parts, but feel like I will take some of the character away from the fl250.

I have a bunch of parts laying around.

I have searched every site I can for ideas and successful repairs of the front beam, but not found much. I plan on doing alot of straightening and welding.

I will be buying some tubing to build a cage, but am unsure what would be best for this little buggy. I have built several go-kart and dune buggies but they used much different OD piping and wall thicknesses.

Wish me luck.......

I would more than welcome any ideas help or links to good repairs. Also if anyone knows cheap sources for parts that would be wonderful.

phydough
04-07-2016, 12:30 AM
Oh yeah...I have 3 kids.

My oldest two share a dune buggy that I traded a KTM 250/300sx for. And my youngest has a kart with a fully built predator 212.

We have a 9 acre field behind our house that we have setup as a bunch of little tracks and obstacles. This fl250 will be a daddy toy and I don't like to spend money on me.

Jrgunn5150
04-07-2016, 04:56 AM
Sounds fun, I know all about saving every penny you can lol. The build is part of the fun though right?

Mississippian
04-07-2016, 12:06 PM
Welcome phydough. The FL250 is fun to ride and pretty quick. I placed an add on my local craigslist wanting parts and got pretty good results, parts cheaper than eBay. I am glad to see the FL250 forum is coming back to life. The front beam can be straightened by inserting a pipe as close to the diameter as you can and heating the beam. If the pipe is snug enough, you can leave it in the beam to reinforce it. The j-arms can be done the same way after they are reinstalled on the beam.

phydough
04-07-2016, 03:45 PM
I have thought about cutting the back side of the beam and straightening it and then multi pass weld it back. Then adding some additional gussets.

Ideally I would like to replace the entire beam with one that is a little longer.

MASCMAN
04-07-2016, 08:00 PM
You bought yours for a similar reason I did.

Check out my build and see what I'm doing by building a custom frame...you have all the running parts so might be a cool project.

Look under builds for POS build.

MASCMAN
04-07-2016, 08:04 PM
Where are you located?

I built a 2003 KTM 250SX into a 300SX...most awesome bike I have ever owned. It was a beast and not for the inexperienced rider!

Rat4020
04-07-2016, 08:20 PM
Welcome to MiniBuggy . Its always great ta see another pep get hooked on the buggy drug LOL

phydough
04-09-2016, 02:58 AM
I am located in Rutherfordton NC.

Not really new to the buggy world. Have a woods buggy with a pancake motor and a 3 rib. Have a manco silverfox with a built 212 (hemi), have a kandi gk150 (piece of junk)

I loved the KTM, but I built it past my riding level. It was an absolute monster. Made my kx500 from back in the days seem like a lightweight.

I have always had an affinity towards anything with a motor. But ever since I was 5 I wanted one of these. I just purchased a full unbeatable original cage. And bumper. I haven't even had a chance to look at it and I have already spent more than what I paid for it.

It has some sort of nerf-bars on it that I haven't seen before, but I will incorporate them into the cage.

Now all I need is rear tires.

I will completely disassemble it coming up.

I have a powder booth so I will powdercoat most of the parts before re-assembling it. The frame won't fit in my oven so it will get the old por15 treatment. I am going to make fenders for it from fiberglass. May even pop a mold off of them and try selling a few. They will be a more modern interpretation than the originals. I also will figure out a better ignition system (kinda what I design for a living).

I also need to find a pipe for it that won't break the bank. Who any pipes from other motors fit this? I don't mind modifying.

I already have a brand new seat and seat cover leftover from one of my buggy builds. That will get mounted with a layer of DEI goldwrap on the backside.

I promise to get pictures.

phydough
04-10-2016, 08:49 PM
Anybody have some cheap atv tires?

phydough
04-13-2016, 01:05 AM
Looking things over a bit more. Does anyone have a frame used they are willing to ship? Would save me a lot of time. These things never show up in NC. I have been looking for years and have seen a total of 3 for sale and mine is one of them.

On a side note. I pulled the transmission and it looked good. Fluid drained with no shavings and the housing is fully intact with no cracks or damage.

The engine has good compression and when I look in the intake and exhaust port everything looks really good. The plug looked good as well.

Pulled the tank which I dumped the fuel out of and there was no noticeable rust.

Carb looks good, but I started tearing it down and will give it a good soak. It's a Mikuni, I was sort of expecting a Kaihlin (spelling?)

The rear wheels are already upgraded to 4 lug hubs and have 9" aluminum rims.

Drive belt is intact and seems good.

No rust on any of the clutches.

Pulled the parts box that he gave me with it and found the steering wheel cover intact. The upper and lower airbox both intact. Filters need to be replaced.

Front tub is intact and has a couple of stress cracks. But I will sand it and lay some more fiberglass down and make it look new.

The parking brake and rear disc brakes work, but I will replace the cables.

I did a thorough inspection of the frame and would like to replace it if possible. I found what appears to be a kink in the frame that had been repaired. I founds some cracking in the high stress areas.

I can make the frame work, but it is just encouraging me to add the suspension to the rear. I have two brand new coilovers from a past buggy project that I built. They are a bit long (30" +), but are progressive so they will work. They also have adjustable damping and rebound.

I didn't take pictures again because my wife was giving me the evil eye about the project.

Parts I will need
1 ITP holeshot 22x11-9
Harness
Some heim joints (2)
Some square tubing
About a full spool of weld wire....

If I can't find a frame soon I will start the necessary repairs on this one. If I do that I am going to fill all holes and make new mounting holes. Seam weld everything and make sure it's square. I am guessing around 40 hours of work...

MASCMAN
04-13-2016, 01:05 PM
I vote that you just start tearing into that frame!

In hindsight, I guess I should have checked my stock frame out a little better...it is a little tweaked and too late now to do anything but adjust my build on the fly.

That's basically what I've been doing the whole time anyway...
http://i1106.photobucket.com/albums/h377/mascman/ODDY%20project/20160126_163656_zpsznhj9xsb.jpg (http://s1106.photobucket.com/user/mascman/media/ODDY%20project/20160126_163656_zpsznhj9xsb.jpg.html)

Mine is nowhere near as good as the builds on here, but I feel it will outperform a stocker when it's done. Sounds like you have the means to build it so go with it!
http://i1106.photobucket.com/albums/h377/mascman/ODDY%20project/20160408_153005_zpswc41glbe.jpg (http://s1106.photobucket.com/user/mascman/media/ODDY%20project/20160408_153005_zpswc41glbe.jpg.html)

phydough
04-14-2016, 01:02 AM
Yeah. I think I am going to just tear tgis apart and have a go at it.

I will strip the frame bare and assess better. I figure worst case scenario I could rebuild a whole new frame. That's what I was going to do before this fl250 popped up. I literally had all of the tubing in my cart (online) when I found this only 4 hours away. I worked out the price with the guy that day. Took off from work early and went and got it.

I played in inventor today and started designing a rear suspension for it. I could do a simple swinger rear axle, but being a big dork...I started designing a cantilever suspension system that allowed more suspension travel.

This is the stage when my projects get out of hand. I always make the decision to make things harder on myself.

I somehow have already convinced myself that it is as easy to build a complicated rear-end from scratch as it is to repair the rear if the frame. We will see.

My time is somewhat limited as I am coaching my son's little league team during the weekdays, coaching his usssa travel ball team on the weekends, and working 60 hours a week.

Pics will come.

phydough
04-23-2016, 12:59 AM
Haven't done any work yet. Just keep spending money. Ordered some new lightweight itp rims and tires for it. Should be delivered on Monday.

Also have decided to go full suspension on it. Have finalized the design and am getting all of the steel that is needed. With what I am planning there will be no extra length added to the wheelbase.

I promise pictures will come. I just haven't really done anything but buy stuff yet.

Mississippian
10-28-2016, 05:09 PM
How's the resto going? Haven't seen anything from you in a while.