Baja Build

Building a Buggy or Baja? Here is the place to ask questions
d7f
Manx Club Member
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Joined: Tue Feb 18, 2014 1:21 am

Baja Build

Postby d7f » Tue Oct 24, 2017 1:12 pm

My name is Dave, I have been a 'passive' member for about 2 years and I currently live in Darwin. We are looking to move to the Cooloola Coast late next year (Nov 2018).

In 1980/81, I built a Baja from a 1963 Beetle. Apart from the body kit, the main changes were a 1640 motor, turned front beam and a reduction hub rear end from a Country Buggy. I had wheels made with serious positive offset to compensate for the extra width of the reduction hub rear. I also had to fit heavier torsion bars to compensate for the 'arse - up' reaction of the rear end under acceleration. This all worked well off road and we travelled half way around Australia in it in 1982. I sold it in 1983 and bought a Hilux - looking for reliability.

Fast forward about 35 years and hopefully a bit of spare time on my hands and ... I have recently bought a 1963 Beetle which has been converted to a soft top and is registered in the NT. The pan and body are rust free. My intention is to turn it into a Baja to use on the QLD beaches and save taking the Toyota on the beach so much. It has a sweet 1640 engine which goes much harder than the last one.

My main issue currently is sourcing a reduction box (drum to drum) to replace the standard Beetle box. Back in 1981 the Country Buggy box slotted straight in. Now I can't find one. I can however find old Kombi reduction hub boxes (still with some difficulty), including Kombi spring plates.

I am seeking advice on the availability of the necessary bracketry etc necessary to do this mod. I don't want to go down the path of installing a later IRS rear end at this stage, that may happen down the track. Any advice will be most appreciated.

Cheers,
Dave F.
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bajabone
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Joined: Tue Nov 30, 1999 10:00 am
Location: Sunshine coast

Re: Baja Build

Postby bajabone » Wed Oct 25, 2017 6:57 am

Hi Dave I'm not sure how many C/B boxes are out there but you may find one. We also had C/B boxes in a couple of Baja's in the eighties as well, and they did the job. These days I would highly recommend the Irs conversion. A little painful but well worth the effort as you get a better, safer car to drive. Also if you do it, go Kombi 3 rib or 4 rib box from the start as the ratios are ideal for offroad Bajas and you won't break a box with a 1641cc donk. Cooloola coast is primo Baja/buggy country with Fraser, Rainbow and Noosa north shore at your doorstep so hurry up and start packing!
Cheers
d7f
Manx Club Member
Manx Club Member
Posts: 6
Joined: Tue Feb 18, 2014 1:21 am

Re: Baja Build

Postby d7f » Thu Oct 26, 2017 2:10 pm

Thanks bajabone, i am just trying to get this project to a point where it is respectable off road before we shift. The quickest way I can achieve this is with the reduction hub box. Will probably go the later IRS conversion once we are settled in.

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