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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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PostPosted: May 3, 2008, 4:45 pm 
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Joined: March 19, 2008, 7:43 pm
Posts: 14
Location: Edinboro, PA
Been lurking and reading for a while. It is time to get started.

I've been a tinkerer since I got my drivers license over 45 years ago. Built kit cars and dune buggies and helped friends with Porshe rebuilds, Devin

scheming, Allard replica to mention a few.

My garage is crowded, too small from the day it was finished. I have collected bits and pieces over the past 20 years always with the intention of using it some day.

I took stock of what I have available.

Pinto Spindles with rotors and calipers
complete Chevette front and rear suspension
complete Fiero Front suspension
three complete
MGB front and rear suspension
Jag XKE front suspension
Jag XJ6 front and rear suspension
Lincoln Versaille 9inch rear with disk brakes
Maverick 8inch rear
57 Tbird replica chassis with Pinto front suspension pieces, granada rotors and chevy (i think) calipers
Soon to have Datsun Z suspension bitsas as well.

So many choices.

Don't have any transmissions. Don't know why.

Your comments and recomendations on the best components to use will be appreciated.

I got started cutting some 1" tubing for the front frame pieces, LA, LB, LC, and LD. Used a compound miter trim saw with a 10" metal cutting blade. I'm not happy with the results. The scales don't seem accurate. The cut angles are off and required some grinding. From reading the threads thi.s seems to be the most difficult part of the frame assembly.
Assembling them took some thought.

I have a PLASMA CAM cutting table taking up some space in my overcrowded garage. The BOOK and McSorley drawings provided inspiration for a jig to hold the LC and LD pieces in alignment so that LA and LB could be offered up for proper fit. The jig is comprised of 5 pieces of 16ga steel. They slip fit together and are squared up with a carpenter's square. The center verticle piece is the centerline of the jig. Mark the centerline on LC and LD and align the mark with the center piece.
The jig has two positions for LC, the book, McSorley 7 +4, and the McSorley 7 +442. I wasn't sure what I was going to build so I made it for all.

Attached photos show the jig in use.


Attachments:
File comment: Front end jig pieces
001.JPG
001.JPG [ 83.74 KiB | Viewed 4130 times ]
File comment: assembled pieces
002.JPG
002.JPG [ 64.25 KiB | Viewed 4129 times ]
File comment: Squared up
003.JPG
003.JPG [ 74.63 KiB | Viewed 4130 times ]
File comment: alignment of centerlines
004.JPG
004.JPG [ 63.39 KiB | Viewed 4130 times ]
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PostPosted: May 3, 2008, 5:56 pm 
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Location: Champion, Ohio
That's a great idea. You should make a few more and sell 'em. I know for me it was a nightmare, and took two tries to get it right. It was the hardest part of the framework.

Another thought would be to extend the horizontal bracket plates to align the upright pieces, and to make a second set--one conventional, like the book, and another angled to allow Jack McCornack's front suspension brackets. I can't really explain it very well, you'd have to hear it from hime, but using his suspension, I had to weld individual bracket sides to the framework, whereas if they were tilted inwards, I could just have used regular brackets. There's pictures on my build log.


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PostPosted: May 3, 2008, 6:05 pm 
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Location: Edinboro, PA
I see what you mean about the horizontal members. That would allow LA and LB to be supported. Why didn't I think of that? Will see what I can come up with in a few days.
Not familiar with McCormack's brackets. Link?


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PostPosted: May 3, 2008, 7:01 pm 
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Joined: February 13, 2007, 1:55 am
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Location: Newberg, Oregon
http://www.kineticvehicles.com/brackets.html

pagpag, ingenious idea for the jig. Heck, I'd buy one.


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PostPosted: May 3, 2008, 8:14 pm 
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Thanks. I think I could sell then at $40. plus shipping.


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PostPosted: May 3, 2008, 9:56 pm 
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Here's what I mean about using the brackets. If I had the upright tubes on a jig, I would not have had to weld on individual half-brackets. They were a nightmare to align correctly, and some took several tries. Thus the use for either two different horizontal jig pieces, or perhaps a two-sided one. The top and lower could be off-set to help with the support due to the slit that fits it on the vertical jig pieces. Also, they could possible use bending to help align the tubes. You'd have to fiddle around to figure out for sure.


Attachments:
IMG_2046.jpg
IMG_2046.jpg [ 72.68 KiB | Viewed 4084 times ]
jig.JPG
jig.JPG [ 13.05 KiB | Viewed 4083 times ]
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PostPosted: May 3, 2008, 10:18 pm 
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@StreyrTMP. I see what you mean, McCormack brackets look like a nightmare to install. Is it that they are installed at a fixed location or are they component specific?

I have been warking on changes to horizontal members in PLASMA CAM drawing program. Might have change fabricated tomorrow for the BOOK and McSorley setups.


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PostPosted: May 3, 2008, 10:25 pm 
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No, no... Jack's brackets are not a nightmare... it's the fact that I did not know about them when building my frame. What you see on my car are one-off brackets--he usually uses conventional brackets.


I prefer, and definately reccommend, his quick adjust suspension is very nice. However, using the rod ends, you have to turn the front up-and-down tube to avoid doing what I had to do.

If you get a chance, give Jack a call or an email, I really suggest using his control arms if you don't have a really well re-inforced plan of your own. He has stress tests behind his designs... He could tell you the degrees to turn the tubes as well. It would not hamper structural integrity.


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PostPosted: May 3, 2008, 10:27 pm 
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@SteyrTMP.
Looked at your drawing a little closer now. Are you suggesting a jig to hold LA and LB in a jig at an angle so that you could weld them in at that angle and then weld the McCormack's brackets on without bending them as depicted in the photos?


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PostPosted: May 4, 2008, 12:20 am 
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Exactly. I wasn't able to bend them for mine--I had to have him cut me individual sides, one longer than the other, to compensate otherwise.

I think he can probably give you the angle degrees he uses. I would figure that not bending the control arms would do two things: first, make them adjustable like his without having to take them off, and secondly, less stress on the tubing. Not really significant for upper control arms, but hey.

Also, a lot of the lower control arms people are making, at least in my opinion, and seeing some results, seem to be lacking in strength. For a 100hp engine, regular tubing is no problem... but when you start pushing 400hp, you're usually starting to look at substancial weight, so one good bump might do you in... or even hard braking. Mark Rivera replaced his initial front suspension due to bending a control arm, ask him.


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PostPosted: May 4, 2008, 12:26 am 
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Doh...

I forgot Jack covers pretty much everything I said on his website... including the pictures of my car ;)

http://www.kineticvehicles.com/ControlArms.html

He mentions turning those front arms, and shows a picture of how he does it, and how I had to do it.


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PostPosted: May 4, 2008, 9:17 am 
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Location: Charleston, WV
I don't know if he still does it but a member in KY, "Jamscal" was Tig welding those front pieces and selling them for around $50 IIRC. If anyone needs one and doesn't want to fool with it, shoot him a PM.

I was able to do mine first try using some 2x4 scraps, some screws and a bit of luck. That is a slick looking jig you made though. :thmbsup:

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PostPosted: May 4, 2008, 10:31 am 
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After a good nights sleep I think one way of solving the issue for McCormack's suspension would be to use 1" round tubing for LA, LB,FU1 and FU2. His brackets could be attached at whatever angle is needed and then add some filets for strength.


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PostPosted: May 4, 2008, 10:37 am 
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Thanks Chetcpo,

another thought, my jig will also work for anyone building a frame with 1" round tubing. I would have to redesign the jig for anything larger.


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PostPosted: May 4, 2008, 12:19 pm 
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Ditto what Nate said. I just finished the second side of Jack's design, and am very pleased. (Pictures tonight)

The two-piece brackets are no trouble to install. Just stack the two sides, two spacers and the rod end together, then bolt the assembly solid. Carry that whole assembly over to the car, side it on the chassis tube, and it will pretty much hold itself in place. Add a C-clamp when you get it where you want it and tack weld. No problem. Possibly easier than a regular bracket, since it is easy to clamp in place with a rod end in place.

-dave

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