View Full Version : Building the Megalodon

09-29-2016, 11:48 PM
I was asked to start a thread on building my Megalodon. I have done car projects here and there, but never a buggy. I have drove many UTV's, kill the time buggys, and rails. I wanted something that I could kill myself quick, so I chose the Megalodon.

Im going to power my Mega with a Kawasaki 750. Frame will almost be completely fabricated with 1-1/2" 0.083 wall round tubing. Most of the plate pieces will be cut from 3/16". Control arms will be 1-1/2 x 3/4" 0.065 wall rectangular tubing.

I have started on the rear section first. I only started there due to a buddy of mine wanted to try out his new torchmate. I put the diff housing together using spacers "by the the diff size" and 90 degree blocks. I wanted that housing straight and true as possible. When I got to the point of starting the control arms I built a jig out of wood. Don't laugh, i'm sure you done it at some point. I got two of them done and assembled it just to check out the alignment.




Here is one of the control arms fully completed. I painted a light coat just to keep it from rusting. Once they are all done I will have them powder coated. First, lol, wooden jig!




I will be welding more controls arms soon. I have to wait a little longer to bend my tube for the frame, still healing from a Hernia. I will be working on this more later. Excited about my build and I will post more as I go,,,,,,, The build must go on!

09-30-2016, 07:33 PM
Excellent post! I will be watching!

My daughter a double hernia surgery this spring. Probably the reason my car isn't finished, but the medical bills are payed off.


10-01-2016, 06:34 AM
Looking great, my only concern is the tubing used for the a-arms. Are you going to brace these further? I seem to remember the Meg being built with multiple braces internally? Other wise, looking great!

10-01-2016, 12:56 PM
I've had two different hernias. First one was in 1st grade I believe, and I was running up and down the stairs at home the next day. The second one was maybe 5th grade, and I was bent over walking very slow for a few days. Funny how little kids handle some things better than older people, kinda backwards sometimes haha but hope all is going well and you can get back to the good stuff soon :)

10-01-2016, 08:18 PM
For now I really don't plan on it bracing the rears. I see your point though, the fronts have extra bracing in them. I imagine the front has more due to seeing more punishment than the rear. Once I do get it together and they don't hold up to the abuse I will rebuild them with more bracing.

10-09-2016, 11:25 PM
Got to some welding this weekend. The upper suspension mount was actually supposed to be bent to shape. I do not have access to a bender so I just split it into 3 pieces and welded it together. I got the hub tacked together and will finish welding it tomorrow. Wednesday I will pick up my tubing and start bending for the frame. I'm not exactly new to bending but close. If you have any heads up, let me know.




11-06-2016, 02:29 AM
Finally got to some bending. Bending involves a bit of swearing, had a 5 bend going and went the wrong way on the last. I have not got anything welded, so what I do have is for your imagination. Question for the experience benders, why does my offset bends come out short on degrees? I rotate the pipe from 0 to 15 degrees and I get 10???? Anyways, got a few pics. I will be bending more tomorrow, and cleaning my garage.




Pud Wallup
12-01-2016, 04:02 AM
Hi there. I'm building a megalodon too. I won't pretend to be an expert bender, but I was able to bend the tubes with the recommended 15 deg. angle. When I bent the bottom tubes, I started with the second bend (starting to count from the front...the second one that bends "up"). Next, with the tube on a flat worktable, I rotated the tube so that the bend angle was 15 deg, which I measured with an angle finder and double-checked that the height was 4 and 3/32'' at the centerline of the "front" of the tube when trimmed to length. With that bend set and locked in at 15 deg, I put the degree ring on the tube and set it to zero. You have to make sure that the table or floor you're working on is perfectly level. Then, I put the tube in my bender and made sure the rotation angle was zero. Again, this only works if the tube bender is also perfectly level (the bender and table have to both be on the same plane). With the table/floor perfectly level, the bender perfectly level, and the degree ring set to zero (locking in the second bend to the recommended 15 deg.) then the offsetting bends should be on the same plane. You can always heat it up with a torch and apply pressure to make small tweaks. It's taken me a while to get it figured out and some of my earlier bends needed tweaking. [smilie=ohmy.gif]

Also, you're probably already doing this too, but calculate the springback on the tube too. I'm using 1.5'' .065 DOM tube, and the springback is 10%. I made several test bends to measure the springback. Luckily for me, 10% is a pretty easy number to calculate for overbending. You're using .083'' wall thickness, so the springback will be less.

I've also calculated the length of the bends, which really helps to get the lengths in between the bends correct. To do that, you only need to know the radius of the die you're using....and a calculator. I'm using a 5'' radius die, so using the formula for the circumference of a circle (2*pi*r), then divide that product by 360 deg. to give you the length of each degree of bend, which in this case measures .086''. If you're bending a 15 deg bend, then the total bend length is .086'' * 15 = 1.29'' (slightly less than 1 and 5/16''). Divide that by 2 to get the center of the bend (roughly 5/8''). Now that you know the center and overall length of the bend, you can measure from the center of the previous bend to get the length in between bends, measured from the center of the bends. This method also helps because you can start your bend from either side of the bend, (the "start" or the "end"). One thing to note is that this method is based on the centerline of the tube, so make sure you're always working on the centerline.

One quick check you might do it so make sure that back plate is on correctly. It might be upside down.

I completed the chassis on my build last February and had to wait for more funds to buy all the bolt-on components. In the interim time, I decided I wanted mine to be a 2 seater, and since Badland hasn't released their M2S plans (don't think they ever will), I'm making it up as I go. It's helped to essentially build the single-seater chassis first, but it will be an adventure for sure! :D

Looking forward to seeing your progress! Great work so far!

12-30-2016, 09:33 PM
Franks and beans!!!

12-30-2016, 09:43 PM
Thanks for the info pud. I did rose bud the tubing so I could get my bend, that was fun doing it myself!:mad: Back at it again, just the buggy and I. Been very busy getting my class stuff done for the Military, also getting my packet together to go through Warrant Officer Training. So, I moved on from the old wooden jig and built a more solid jig. Shady but it works.
I got both of my Spindles done. I test fitted one of the spindles with control arms, face of the spindle maintains almost a perfect 90 degree angle up or down. The front support piece, includes rack mount, control arm mount, and upper shock mount is complete. The bottom and med section are mocked, I got to tweak one of my tubes. Back to the rose bud.................... Happy New Year Everyone, watch out for the crazies!!!