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Baja Forums -:- AzBaja.com Members -:- New Members -:- Bryan from Idaho, Newly Obtained VW Buggy Fever!
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Bryan from Idaho, Newly Obtained VW Buggy Fever!
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bmwfan2238
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Location: Boise, Idaho
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Post Post subject: Bryan from Idaho, Newly Obtained VW Buggy Fever!
Posted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 05:29 AM
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So my name is Bryan. Always been a fan of BMW's. I'm only 26 and I have owned 4 and taught myself how to do car work on these cars. Including rebuilding engines and anything you can think of on the cars, I can do it, and properly.

I met my fiance' and she has a '72 full bodied Baja, at the time it didn't run, but it has come a long way since. Before hand I wasn't really a fan of the VW Beetle until finding out how easy and cheap they are to work on compared to having BMW's as a hobby car. To say the least I have a lot of questions, especially since I got buggy fever so badly I am in the process of buying my own '72 full bodied Baja with no engine!

The guy that previously had sold my fiance' her baja and taught her what she knows i'm not sure is the best resource for learning from. For instance he believes that there is no such thing as an air cooled engine that doesn't leak oil... which I find hard to fathom...

So my main questions are...

1) Can you build an air cooled engine that doesn't pee oil everywhere?

2) Can you build one that is reliable to start and run in cold weather? (We have extremes of hot and cold in Idaho)

3) What transmission options are there? I'd like to have a higher top speed than 70 but still have some exceleration as the back tires on my new baja are 31".

4) What engine size would be best? I'm used to straight six engines so I know I want bigger than a 1600 but this is the only sized engine I've diven in a baja...

Thank you! I look forward to learning from the wealth of information on these forums!

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bmwfan2238
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Post Post subject: Bryan from Idaho, Newly Obtained VW Buggy Fever!
Posted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 09:41 PM
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Here is a photo of the Baja I am in the process of buying... To give you guys a little more of an idea what I'm working with!


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PaDan
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Post Post subject: Bryan from Idaho, Newly Obtained VW Buggy Fever!
Posted: Mon Aug 27, 2012 02:35 AM
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Welcome to the site, Its good to have someone else in Idaho

And yes you can build a bug motor with out oil leaks and will start in our weather. You don't have much for heat when it is real cold. I did see that baja on craig's list. What are they asking for it?

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bmwfan2238
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Post Post subject: Re: Bryan from Idaho, Newly Obtained VW Buggy Fever!
Posted: Mon Aug 27, 2012 11:37 PM
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He was asking $750.00 but I was able to talk him down quite a bit. In the end I was really happy with the deal. I'm not too worried about the heat situation in the winter as it would just be me driving it. Although we love having bugs we have a baby on the way which means we have to keep my baby friendly car and also get a new one. Luckily my fiance' is a gear head herself so it's not something either of us mind spending money on lol.

I also have other friends here in Idaho that drive baja bugs. Hopefully after I get this second one running as well as the one we already have we can get some events planned with a large group of them. Perhaps some camping/off-roading trips! I've also heard that these do pretty dang well in the snow, which I'm excited for because my other car is an M3... Press the gas a little and face the opposite direction lol.

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Post Post subject: Re: Bryan from Idaho, Newly Obtained VW Buggy Fever!
Posted: Tue Aug 28, 2012 04:36 PM
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Welcome to AzBaja. Nice looking Baja. As for heat you'll want it HF makes a 12 volt heater with fan that will work to keep the windshield clear.

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MojaveRacer208
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Post Post subject: Bryan from Idaho, Newly Obtained VW Buggy Fever!
Posted: Tue Aug 28, 2012 11:35 PM
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Welcome to Bajas.

Note that the Baja you show is a 1972 Super Beetle. The front suspension is McPherson Strut, like a Porsche 911 and lots of other cars. This works fine on pavement, but is generally considered to not be very good for offroad use.

The price at less than $750 sounds like a bargain if the body structure is in good shape and not a lot of rust. It LOOKS pretty good for the price.

You can get started doing some mild offroading with it, but don't expect it to be ready for Metal Mullisha stuff. If and when you decide to upgrade, the front suspension can be cut off at the front bulkhead (just in front of the front bulkhead ahead of the pedals). A beam can be installed and mounted to a full roll cage to provide as much as about 3x as much wheel travel and vastly sturdier components. Or even an a-arm suspension could be installed. Best to start mild and work your way up to more serious stuff. It's best to know how to walk before you run and jump. If and when you're ready for all that, there are plenty of people here to guide you and help you out.

On ShopTalkForums, there's a guy in Idaho who has a Baja and has recently acquired a race buggy. There are some others in Washington and Utah he is hooked up with, so you're not all alone in this. Tim can give you some pointers on operating a Baja in Idaho. He's used his for a daily driver from his semi-rural location. I could hook you up if you're interested.


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bmwfan2238
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Post Post subject: Re: Bryan from Idaho, Newly Obtained VW Buggy Fever!
Posted: Wed Aug 29, 2012 03:12 AM
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Oh thanks for the tips! I was wondering why the front of this car is so much bigger than most baja's! lol. But that's okay because I probably will be doing a lot of work on it. And if I drive it off the pavement it'll just be gravel roads... nothing extreme or bumpy untill I get everything I want done to it!

It's very rust free for the price definitely! A little rust on the outside edge of the heater channels (inside the wheel well) and some rust where the side bars connect to the body but other than that the fiberglass is all straight and the paint will look very decent after a buffing and waxing so I'm very excited.

I'll probably junk the interior... but I'm not sure I want a back seat anyways and I'd rather have more sporty front seats.

I've been toying with the idea of using the back seat space for a bigger engine... but I'd probably have to plan on not driving it for a few years to do that much work. lol. Not to mention all the suspension modifications that would need to be made. Has anyone ever heard of anybody successfully putting in a straight 6 engine??? Since I haven't fully disassembled a buggy yet I don't even know if that's a feasable idea even or ludacris but it'd be fun! especially considering I have most of a BMW 3.5liter engine and engine management compter as spare parts! Twisted Evil lol


Last edited by bmwfan2238 on Wed Aug 29, 2012 03:14 AM; edited 1 times in total
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Post Post subject: Bryan from Idaho, Newly Obtained VW Buggy Fever!
Posted: Wed Aug 29, 2012 03:13 AM
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Oh I would be very interested in getting to know some local buggy enthusiasts btw...

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