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    Hello from Washington State
    #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Everett, WA
    Posts
    29
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    This is an awesome website/forum. *I have been lurking around for about a month. *It is full of innovative ideas and constructive criticisms! *I am hoping to resurrect my 10+ year old project this year. *

    Back in the early 90's, while poking around the Honda dealer, I saw the FL400. *What a cool little toy to play with. *At $6500, it was a little pricy for a college student making $6/hour. *To make the long story short, I thought I would 'build' one… *Well, that how the little project started. *It started with 1.5" tubings that sported a double A-arm front suspension with 20" of suspension travel and a multi-link rear suspension with 12" of travel. *I bought a '87 Honda CR500 and grafted the motor into the buggy. *Well, I was young and did not know much. *I was faced with a problem of how to start the engine? *The original kick starter needed approximately 180 degrees to start the motor. *There was simply not enough room. *I devised several solutions, including a pulley system, a electric start with a sprocket/chain reduction, and a host of other methods (getting old and can't seem to remember what other stupid things I tried). *None was successful. *Finally, to get the buggy running, we tried several things, including friend pushing the buggy. *Rolling resistance of these off-road tires were too large, we were never successful at push start the buggy. *Finally, we resorted to my Dad's Chevy van towing the buggy with a tow rope. *Yee, haw… *what a ride! *Unfortunately, all that fun and excitement did not last too long before shearing the key on the driveline. *After repairs, we managed to get a few more runs out of it. This method of starting is clumbersome and looked really stupid. *What to do? *At the time, I was shopping for a sled motor and came across a wrecked '83 Yamaha FZ600 with a running motor! *

    The little brain thought: "Hey, that solved my starting problem!" *to make the engine fit, I had to extend the rear chassis by approximately 12". *Damn, this motor is heavy! *I now need a hoist just to get the engine in and out of the buggy. *Being a fairy poor (and cheap) college student that I was, I devised a pulley system to hang from the my parents' garage rafters. *Upon the first pull, the beam on the rafter broke (old garage not very well built). *Oh s***! *Finally with some rafter reinforcements. *I was able to get the motor into the buggy. *Got the engine to fireup without any mufflers was very exciting for my close-quartered neightbors. *With the new engine, It would need new rear suspension, new driveline, new brake system, along with shifting mechanisms. *I have now graduated and got a real job. *So the buggy sat in my parents garage for the next 10+ years (with the engine in the buggy not hunged from rafter...).

    Since then, I graduated got a real job, got married, have 2 young kids, and my own house and garage (unfortunately, it does not have an exposed rafter I can hang heavy engine from). *Although I have a real job, I seem to have less money… so buying a built buggy is out of the question (I like the Redline Revolt). *It is time to resurrect the old project! *



    I did learn a few things: *
    I bought a scratch TIG welder and learned how to weld (although not very pretty but a solid weld).
    I learned how to cut notches in the tube in several different ways. *For thin-walled (0.035" - 0.049") tubings, it was easier to take a grinder and just grind a triangle at the end of the tube and thin out the inside of the tube. *Hole-saw just don't work.
    I should consult other people that know how to build a buggy.
    I learned that snowmobile engine may have been a better choice as it has reverse and I don't have to deal with hooking up the clutch and gear shift mechanism.
    I learned I should have planned better on motor placement, sprocket/brake setup, rear suspension setup, mounting the motor.
    I learned that the load/forces exerted on the buggy is very high, conservative and reliable design is very important.
    I learned that this project is costing me more that buying the FL400.
    ---This list is growing---


    Dave

    PS: *Anyone know good places to ride in the WA state Seattle area?
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    Re: Hello from Washington State
    #2
    Millenium Member plkracer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Monroe Wa
    Posts
    3,590
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    I'm in the seattle area (for now) too, but there is nowhere to ride. When I go back to Yakima there are plenty of places, or you can go to Oregon. Looks like you had fun with your project. Are you going to use the same frame and everything for the new one? What parts do you have/need?
    Proud owner of a two seat pucker-mobile. Funco inspired mini buggy powered by a Busa. Giving out free rides to anyone brave enough.
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    Re: Hello from Washington State
    #3
    Senior Member busasandrail's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Olympia, Wa. or 25 gallons of Diesel from the dunes
    Posts
    1,001
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    Welcome.....I'm in the olympia area.

    Oregon is the only good (close) place to ride for sand/dunes.
    Being pushed to better yourself is never a bad thing.

    EL TORO sand car w/ intercooled TURBO 1397 Busa / Subaru STI diff. / cutting brakes
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    Re: Hello from Washington State
    #4
    Admin Gene's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Soyo, Angola Africa
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    6,715
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    Great introduction and story. The build usually costs more than anticipated, just the way it is. Sounds like you might have a running car before too long so let's see some pics!
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    Re: Hello from Washington State
    #5
    Keeper of the Asylum K-fab's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Scottsdale, AZ. 10.9 miles from the trailheads
    Posts
    10,183
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    Welcome to the site FP. * [smilie=blowkiss.gif]

    Wonderful introduction. *The last line of the list is perfect. *

    I never could start a CR500. *I feel your pain!
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    Re: Hello from Washington State
    #6
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Everett, WA
    Posts
    29
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    Thanks guys! *I'll take some pictures over the weekend...
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    Re: Hello from Washington State
    #7
    Default
    That's a priceless intro flyingpig! I'm willing there's more of us here than want to admit it that have done some of the same things.(who me?????)Welcome to the site.
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    Re: Hello from Washington State
    #8
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Everett, WA
    Posts
    29
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    Here are a few pics of my incomplete buggy... *Lots of dirt/duct from storage...
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    Re: Hello from Washington State
    #9
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Everett, WA
    Posts
    29
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    I did some searching and you guys were right, there is not a whole lot of places to ride north of Seattle. *I think the closest one is Walker Valley...
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    Re: Hello from Washington State
    #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    211
    Default
    Hey flying pigs, im also in Seattle. Not too many places but the street. IMO go out to Yakima or eastern WA and have a blast. Looks like a nice build, maybe add some cross bars in the main seating area, seems like a big hole and maybe support issues?
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