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  #1  
Old 11-04-2006, 10:38 PM
t walgamuth's Avatar
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Location: Lafayette Indiana
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drove a beck spyder today

i went over to bremen indiana today. i am thinking of buying something that will be good on autocross. i read about these beck spyders and saw one at the fall auburn auction. i liked the looks of it.

so today i looked it over pretty well. the fit and finish is impressive. it has a tube frame and glass body. the seats are leather. the engine tranny and basic design of suspension is vw beetle. it is supposed to weigh about 1250 dry. so when i drove it i was kindof disappointed. the steering felt very slow and the car didnt feel that fast either.

i felt that either the car weighs more than stated or the engine was kindof soft. of course the engine was not broken in yet so after some miles it might feel a lot better.

anybody have experience with these?

it had the 2100cc motor and two large looking two barrell webers.

tom w

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[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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  #2  
Old 11-05-2006, 03:15 AM
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I remember seeing those in Motor Trend in a feature article years ago but have never seen one on the road. Aren't they about 20K and have a VW air cooled engine?
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  #3  
Old 11-05-2006, 04:42 AM
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Did you ring that motor out? Could be just makes all its power up high in the powerband. Probably a pretty fun car. Well, how'd it handle? Never driven a beetle.
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  #4  
Old 11-05-2006, 05:17 AM
ForcedInduction
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Just add a turbo.
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  #5  
Old 11-05-2006, 06:30 AM
t walgamuth's Avatar
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it is an air cooled vw motor. they build them up for you or you can supply your own. this one was a 2100 cc one.

they run about 26 to30k depending on options ready to go.

without the motor from 19 to low 20s.

i was reluctant to redline it since it didnt have many miles on it, but i did bounce the redline at least once. it should not be a real "cammy" motor but should with a normal street cam be a fairly torquey motor throughout the rpm range from about 1500 up.

forced.....you want to add a turbo to everything! i bet you have one on your lawn mower!

actually that wouldn't be a bad idea, but i am not looking for something to develop, i want something to be reliable and fun to autocross with a chance to set fast time of day in ordinary meets.

tom w
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[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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  #6  
Old 11-05-2006, 10:46 AM
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Ususlly, at least one 550 spyder is on ebay at any time. Try ebaymotors, porsche, other.

Also check spyderowners.com and spyderclub.com

regards,
Mark
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  #7  
Old 11-05-2006, 10:52 AM
BigPoppaBenz
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If you're looking for a good autocross in that price range, I think the Ariel Atom would be great. Have you thought about one of those?

Peter
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  #8  
Old 11-05-2006, 10:57 AM
TheDon's Avatar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigPoppaBenz View Post
If you're looking for a good autocross in that price range, I think the Ariel Atom would be great. Have you thought about one of those?

Peter
pfft caterham super 7
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  #9  
Old 11-05-2006, 11:30 AM
t walgamuth's Avatar
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the ariel atom is just too wierd looking for this visual architect.

the seven clones have always attracted me.

but since i kindof discovered the beck spyder it has me thinking that a mid engine design might be the ultimate for handling. i really like the looks of it too. i havent sat in a caterham yet but i suspect i might be a tight fit at 5' 8 and 190#. i am kindof broad. there is lots of elbow room in the spyder.

thanks for the tips i will check out the websites mentioned above.

if the spyders dont seem competitive i will probably look at a seven.

although in the 20 to 30 range there are a host of attractive nimble cars...minis (dont want fwd), honda 2000, crossfire, bmw zs and z coupes, and so forth.

tom w
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[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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  #10  
Old 11-05-2006, 12:50 PM
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Seems as if the power to weight ratio is right the car should be fast but then again it has smallish looking tires. With such low curb weight I would hope it does just fine with 205-225mm tires. Did it not handle well or just feel like it could not be pushed?
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  #11  
Old 11-05-2006, 01:25 PM
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Those Beck Spyders look nice but I wouldn't think of them as an auto-x car really. More something nice to cruise around in. Here's a pic of a Spyder I saw last time I was in LA. Sharp design.

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  #12  
Old 11-05-2006, 10:15 PM
t walgamuth's Avatar
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i checked out one of the spyder forums. it seems most folks arent autocrossing them. a lot of discussion of horsepower and brakes, not much discussion that i could see about handling. it seems that they are a bit heavier than i was lead to believe, in fact they weigh about the same as an early beetle i think. so i am not sure but it kindof looks like if i wanted to autocross it i will have to sort out the suspension myself. also rubbing tires is a common problem too. i was surprised that nobody was talking of actual porsche engines in them, but some had seen subie engines in them.

they are so sweet looking and the quality seems so great that i havent given up on them but i suspect if autocrossing is a priority i will be better off with a seven clone as everybody ,pretty much, races them somehow.

thanks for the comments, everybody.

tom w
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[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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  #13  
Old 11-05-2006, 10:26 PM
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miata?
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  #14  
Old 11-05-2006, 10:43 PM
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For auto-x you may be better off with a Seven.

Regarding your Spyder ride,I think the motor may have been soft, I have ridden (not driven) in a Beck with a 1915 VW with twin Dell-orto carbs...

Wet-your-pants kind of joyride, plenty o'power! I'd believe the 1200+- lb figure...
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  #15  
Old 11-05-2006, 10:48 PM
t walgamuth's Avatar
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yeah, with the power to weight ratio advertised that should be it....wet your pants stuff!

yeah, don, miatas are very very nice autocrossers. i just cant get too excited bout them. too common and too ricey. i am sure if i had one i would like it though. i just don't want one.

there are just two japanese cars i like....the honda 2000 and the nsx. i also like the insight though. but that is another category completely.

tom w

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[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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