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Dustin drag ghia (the beginnings)

7588 Views 20 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  motorhead
Well I finally decided after looking and looking for a car to just build the one I have. It's in awful shape but a good candidate for a race car. And free. While looking for a car I either found a super beetle that I don't want or a beetle/ghia in just a little better shape than mine. I hate to cut up a decent street car so I decided since we are about finished with my wife's street ghia I just build a full on race car.

It will see mainly 8th mile bracket racing. There are zero vw races close to me. Dallas is 6 hours so I'll only hit those vw races a couple times a summer. I'm going to build this car like a super street car. Naturally aspirated 2332 or bigger, layed back bulk head, raised narrowed torsion housing, fiberglass front end and lexan. Adjustable beam and disc brakes with chevy pattern.

What size slicks should I shoot for? 28" tall 8" wide?

I have to cut both rear quarters off so I'm thinking of making the entire rear removable. So fiber glass quarters would be awesome but I can't find any. I've seen them so I know they're out there. No big ass rear box though. I want it looking stock-ish with just two little scoops for each set of stacks.

It's rough but doable. May take a year or so but should be fun.

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Good link thanks. I love his car.
If you want to use 8" slicks, you may need to move your spring plates in a bit. I've heard that 6" is a tight fit.
Ok, I don't have a preference just yet. I don't want to over tire it right off the bat. It won't be anything like the two cars above. It will have a full pan roll cage and race seats and belts but the motor won't be a huge power maker at first. So a 6" tire will probably be fine. Just a good solid 2332 in the 200 hp range no nos. I've got to learn to drive a vw before I sink 20 grand into a motor. And there's no vw races around here. If I can get I to the 7's 1/8 and 10.90's 1/4 I'll be pretty damn happy. Going to do a lot of weight loss to get there too. Getting the car to hook will be a learning experience as well.
Sounds like a good plan. Looking forward to seeing your progress on it!
Subscribed to thread. Looking forward to seeing this evolve!
Thanks. It will be slow but I should get going pretty good on it in the next month. First order of business is to get th body off the pan (intact) and cut the pan halves off and put on new ones. I'll get the bulkhead layed back And the rear torsion housing raised and narrowed. I'm thinking 3 inch raise and 3 inch narrow. It's a little over kill but I'd rather not pull it all back apart, just put a bigger motor and bigger slicks if needed.

Body needs heater channels And quarters. Doors are good but I'm going to lighten them up and put lexan in. Cutting all the engine bay metal out and going with squirrel cage cooling.
Hey guys, bout to get started on this thing. Few questions. What weight and horsepower should I go for. My thoughts are this, 3 rib bus tranny,2332 naturally aspirated. I found a complete rear section to make an entirely removable rear end. Lexan windows all around, glass front end, aluminum rlr adjustable beam. 6 inch slicks. 1 inch rlr trans raise. Rlr weld in cage and as much weight reduction as I can in the doors. Big torsions and race shocks.

I'll post pics as body cutting and separation begin.
Judging from the pics,........ Of course it,s FREE

Do yourself a favor and start with something else!
I would have said no way that I can do it but a decent 65 ghia has popped up here in town and is a damn good candidate for a race car. I'll post pics if I can get it before it's gone. Shouldn't be a problem here. VW's are not in high demand.
It sounds like you're not worried about doing metal work and welding -- If so I'd ditch the pan altogether and do a tube chassis -- a ton of weight reduction right there
I don't have that kind of expertise however. I can cut and fit patch panels but welding a chassis up is beyond my skills. I found a little 65 ghia for sale here in town for cheap. I'm gonna pick it up this week and just start playing with it. Get motor parts gathered up, 3 rib trans and wheels and tires. Probably weld a cage in and get some race seats coming pretty quick.
Judging from the pics,........ Of course it,s FREE

Do yourself a favor and start with something else!
I'm taking your advice. I found a much better candidate 3 hours away for $400. It's a 71 and one of those cars that got taken apart then not much else. It's all there too so I'll have some parts to sell the restorers. I'm not sure what to do with the IRS. Keep it and go bus tranny or swap to swing and stay type one. Either way I'll use a rancho pro comp trans. Starting wth A 2332

The 65 I found was a rot box so I passed on it. I'd like to build a race car not restore another body. I just got finished replacing the lower 6 inches of my street ghia and I'm dead sick of patch panels.
Since you're starting from scratch -- I'd recommend looking at what Mike Lawless did to his Ghia in the rear -- I'm fighting putting anything bigger than a 225 in the rear and it is really killing me -- fit you're going to keep the torsions I'd recommend a 3" narrowing on each side and some tubbing in the rear at a minimum (10" fits then) -- You can always run 8" slicks, which is what you'll want with a NA 2332 or the 10's when you step up to a boosted engine, which you should anyway LOL

I'm thinking of doing new rear swing arms and going coil overs like Mike did -- -- It is just a little beyond what my 1/2 garage with my current ambition level can handle right now LOL
Yea I was planning on cutting the wheel wells out and tubing a little. Tranny raise and torsion narrow later on. Try to keep the original fire wall until the trans raise. Now that I'm thinking about it may just do a whole rear torsion raise and narrow and run the shift rod over the tunnel.
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