Opel "nineteen", going completely topless
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Thread: Opel "nineteen", going completely topless

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    Can Opeler Knorm65's Avatar
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    Opel "nineteen", going completely topless

    Thanks for fixing the title moderators!
    I'm moving to a different town this summer, I'll be living almost next door to my grandparents in a little town of less than 2000 people called Munday Texas. I've already got a summer job set up being a farm and ranch hand (only job in Munday haha!).
    So when I'm not out fixing fences or checking the pivots I'm going to need a new project since my other GT will be staying in its home in my shop at my dads house.
    If all goes well, I will be driving up to Virginia week after next to pick up a car that I'm sure you guys are familiar with. ImageUploadedByAG Free1425433926.582265.jpg yes it's the Red Baron.
    The Red Baron has some rust, and is completely stripped out, which is exactly why it's perfect for my crazy idea.
    What is a noob like me going to do to the poor old Red Baron? Some of you guys have done convertible modifications, but my plan is to entirely remove the top including the windshield. Here's a very rough model of my idea. ImageUploadedByAG Free1425434134.545239.jpg
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1425434156.334768.jpg
    I want it to look kind of like this Miata, ImageUploadedByAG Free1425434230.231897.jpg. After I came up with the idea I discovered the Opel Rekord GT ImageUploadedByAG Free1425434268.842210.jpg
    I will try to incorporate some of its design in to it.

    So what do I expect to have to do?
    1. Build a rotisserie
    2. Build frame reinforcements to extend the jack points like on SteveDaniel's aero GT build.
    3. Weld the doors shut for extra reinforcement and remove the door components to reduce weight.
    4. I may put a single tube across the car where the dash would normally be to make up for the loss of structure from the windshield getting removed.
    5. Only after I'm sure the chassis can handle the top being removed I will use my sawzall to remove it completely.
    6. I will do any interior work now like new floor pans, prepping for the roll cage, weight reduction, replacing the fuel tank with a small fuel cell (maybe mount in the passenger area? That might make the rear to light though.) and I will coat the interior with bedliner or por-15 or something...
    7. I probably won't get to this point this summer, but I will most likely buy an 8 point autopower race rollbar, and I'll also I've to do sheet metal work in order to cover up the open areas on the top of the car. I expect this part will be incredibly difficult for me, luckily my grandfather is a certified welder and is very good with metal working, he will probably give me a hand.
    8. I haven't decided what I'll do for a motor, I'd like to do a motorcycle engine, but I need to do more research. Most likely I'll put my extra 1.9 liter in it. I will also rebuild the suspension and rear diff. I will not get this part for a year or two though.
    9. Ultimately I will paint it with an eye catching paint scheme, install a race instrument cluster, and a seat from a midgit or sprint car with a full harness, I'm not sure if I want it to be street legal yet, I guess I'll have to make a removable windshield if I choose to make it legal, It won't be blisteringly fast, but I want it to be safe whether I take it to drive on the track or cruise some dirt roads (slowly).
    In summary, the main reason I'm doing this is so I can learn metal working and welding better as well as paint and body work eventually. I know it isn't going to end up looking amazing, my expertise is very limited, but I can't do this stuff on my other GT anymore since I have it partially restored now. I can tell you one thing though, this car will be finished before I leave college with a degree, I'm determined! Haha. I will be getting started as soon as I get out for summer break I expect I have not considered many possible roadblocks and I am open to any comments or criticisms on my idea.
    With a few years and a lot of blood sweat and tears, I think i will have something to be proud of!

    P.S. It will be called the opel nineteen because I got the idea for the design from the Lotus 11, and I am currently 19 and it is an Opel GT 1900!
    Last edited by Knorm65; 03-03-2015 at 10:00 PM.
    poor gt (R.I.P) and Flloyd like this.
    "Mira," 1970 Opel GT Working ARA AC, European 2.0L and Midikit
    "Kara," 1972 Opel GT Targa, Welded Doors, Rhinolined

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  3. #2
    Your Noble Friend ;-) G.v.Mainberg's Avatar
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    Good luck!

    Dieter

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    Can Opeler Knorm65's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by heimue View Post
    Good luck!

    Dieter
    Thanks! I'm going to need it

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    Opeler
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    DIY Rotisserie

    https://www.opelgt.com/forums/2d-body...tml#post534434

    Neat construction for a DIY Rotisserie fabricated using wood.

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    Can Opeler Knorm65's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lindsay View Post
    https://www.opelgt.com/forums/2d-body...tml#post534434

    Neat construction for a DIY Rotisserie fabricated using wood.
    Thank you Lindsay! I'm planning on doing this style of rotisserie made by Kwilford.https://www.opelgt.com/forums/2d-body...otisserie.html

    It would be a good way to get a little more experience welding before I start doing chassis reinforcements. I very well may end up making a wooden one though.

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    3000 Post Club m610's Avatar
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    Here's a rotisserie for you.

    Link: http://youtu.be/FzPzO6ECh8c

    Kurt crews for us. We've talked about building one for Opels.
    Knorm65 likes this.

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    Just Some Dude in Jersey The Scifi Guy's Avatar
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    Very cool! I'll be looking forward to following your progress!

    What would be the best thing for Kyler to use to stiffen the chassis? Square tubing? Round? With no roof or traditional GT windows, he won't have to worry too much about door and window alignments and stuff.
    Knorm65 likes this.

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    It will need a LOT of stiffening!

    The top contributes a lot to the stiffness of the "frame" and removing it will reduce the longitudinal stiffness AND lateral as well as torsional! Be sure you carry the attach points for the roll cage far enough fore & aft to pick up the loose ends of the suspension mounts and add more transverse and diagonal members than you think you will need. Think of an I-beam: the vertical web does almost nothing except hold the top and bottom apart. The strength of beam increases with the CUBE of that vertical distance using the same thickness top and bottom. When you cut the top off, the height is about 1/2 so your strength is ONE EIGHTH (or less as the new top web isn't full width or length) of before. The pic attached is the frame of a Lotus 15 (the 11's big brother) destined for its fiberglass body.

    With all that said, a "Lopel 19" sounds like a great project! The 11's were great little cars and one averaged 143 mph for a lap at Monza with the 1100cc motor. Now that is aerodynamic! BTW, that one had a canopy like the Opel Rekord later used for the record car. Post pics along the way! -- Doug

    PS - Make it street legal! Why build it if you can't drive it?
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by slracer; 03-04-2015 at 11:19 AM. Reason: Added PS
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    1000 Post Club Viny Charb's Avatar
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    Good luck. Can't wait for updates.

    One question. Why weld the doors? Because of the rotisserie?
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Tube-frame on the inside is going to be critical once you chop the top off. slracer explains this perfectly!

    Lets add some scope creep to this project!

    I propose you move the driver back 18" which would let you get the engine 18" further back as well. That should get the front/rear weight distribution set up for a lot more power.

    If you do decide to move to a motorcycle engine, remember that they are not build to experience any real lateral Gs. A motorcycle leans over in a turn such that the lateral acceleration and gravitational acceleration vectors sum to a vector which is directly in line with the lean from the rider. (Datamc.org or 34-b.jpg)

    This means the oiling systems in most road-going motorcycle engines will suck air at any significant lateral Gs, causing the engine to run dry and wear out or seize. Lots of FSAE teams convert the oil pans to dry-sump oil pans with mechanisms made to keep the engine well oiled through all Gs, but I would caution about the 'ease' of this process. Only about 1/3 of FSAE cars can finish a 30 minute race.

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    Can Opeler Knorm65's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Viny Charb View Post
    Good luck. Can't wait for updates.

    One question. Why weld the doors? Because of the rotisserie?
    I'm welding the doors to add structure, if I can get a good weld and smooth it out, it will remove all the seams on the car which will look nice! Also I can remove all the door components that attach it to the body since it won't need to open. That will shave a few pounds.
    "Mira," 1970 Opel GT Working ARA AC, European 2.0L and Midikit
    "Kara," 1972 Opel GT Targa, Welded Doors, Rhinolined

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    Can Opeler Knorm65's Avatar
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    Opel "nineteen," going completely topless

    Swiftus,
    Moving the engine back would be a great Idea, but I'm not up for that challenge! I guess I'll be a little front heavy haha!
    I'm planning on an 8 point roll cage so that it won't cover up the top of the car because that would defeat the purpose of removing the top.
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1425496871.205602.jpg
    I figure I'll weld on a tube running diagonal from the roll cage to about where the driver and passenger kick panels are. This will give me protection in a side collision and further prevent drooping.
    I'll also run a bar where the dash is across the car to simulate the windshield.
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1425496937.603477.jpg
    I figure after all of this, the car may still not be ideal, but it will probably be stronger than the average GT in everything except maybe torsional.

    I also didn't consider that about motorcycle engines since I can basically drive my Fourwheelers on the side of cliff.
    What is really like is a 1.1l CIH, but finding parts would be tough.
    Last edited by Knorm65; 03-04-2015 at 02:41 PM.
    "Mira," 1970 Opel GT Working ARA AC, European 2.0L and Midikit
    "Kara," 1972 Opel GT Targa, Welded Doors, Rhinolined

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    Can Opeler Knorm65's Avatar
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    Does anybody recommend a good book on race car chassis building and strengthening?
    "Mira," 1970 Opel GT Working ARA AC, European 2.0L and Midikit
    "Kara," 1972 Opel GT Targa, Welded Doors, Rhinolined

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    Sick with Opelitus broszzy's Avatar
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    Them Song

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eAHQ-9Fniac

    Sorry you have to skip the ad but this all I could think of when I read your thread title.

    Good luck with you project.

    Pat
    That looks like it was made for it. Come to think of it, it was made for it!

    "All the worlds indeed a stage, we are merely players, performers, & portrayers, each anothers audience, outside the gilded cage"
    Geddy Lee/Neil Peart

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    Can Opeler Knorm65's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by broszzy View Post
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eAHQ-9Fniac

    Sorry you have to skip the ad but this all I could think of when I read your thread title.

    Good luck with you project.

    Pat
    Hey! Thanks for posting this. I haven't listened to Steely Dan in awhile. I used to force my dad to play Steely Dan in the car when I was a kid!
    My favorites are The Caves of Altamira, Kings, The Boston Rag, My Old School and King of the World.
    They are a band you can listen to a million times and still not understand all the meanings of the songs.
    Good Stuff!
    "Mira," 1970 Opel GT Working ARA AC, European 2.0L and Midikit
    "Kara," 1972 Opel GT Targa, Welded Doors, Rhinolined

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    3000 Post Club Site Supporter P.J. Romano's Avatar
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    Poor, poor Red Baron. Just as it escaped Gordon, hoping for some peaceful time, it will go through more radical surgeries.
    Life is not just for some cars.
    Old racers never die. They just go bench racing.

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    Opel "nineteen," going completely topless

    Quote Originally Posted by P.J. Romano View Post
    Poor, poor Red Baron. Just as it escaped Gordon, hoping for some peaceful time, it will go through more radical surgeries.
    Life is not just for some cars.
    At least it won't be crushed into a cube!
    RallyBob likes this.
    "Mira," 1970 Opel GT Working ARA AC, European 2.0L and Midikit
    "Kara," 1972 Opel GT Targa, Welded Doors, Rhinolined

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    Quote Originally Posted by P.J. Romano View Post
    Poor, poor Red Baron. Just as it escaped Gordon, hoping for some peaceful time, it will go through more radical surgeries.
    Life is not just for some cars.
    P.J. - Life ends for some cars and for others, it gets better and better! JMHO (but your point about Gordon IS well taken). -- Doug
    The Scifi Guy likes this.

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    Can Opeler Knorm65's Avatar
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    Opel "nineteen," going completely topless

    Well it looks like I won't be using the Red Baron after all... Let's just say that my grandpa got excited about doing this project with me and he bought the car I was about to buy all the windows from to replace my cracked windshield and have spares. The car was $800. I know I'm spoiled!!! The parts are all on me though!

    I feel bad because I had the owner of the Red Baron hold the car since I was planning on going on a road trip to get it this week. I told the owner to keep the small deposit I made, and hopefully they will find a really good person to sell it to. Sorry Gordo! I guess I'm not going to rip your GT apart.
    Anyway here's a bunch of pictures of it, it has rust but not horrible I don't think.
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426390920.672859.jpg
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426390941.121529.jpg
    Headlights still flip.
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426390975.723998.jpg
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426391006.278723.jpg
    The rear side windows are welded shut with sheet metal. Really not too shabby of a job either.
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426391066.940882.jpg
    Passenger floor pan has some rust up front but still pretty sturdy.
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426391134.811278.jpg
    Drivers side floor pan is even cleaner.
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426391178.889050.jpg
    Except here
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426391237.505838.jpg
    Rear jack points are better than on my other GT.
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426391322.393206.jpg
    It has rear away bars!
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426391431.434787.jpg
    This is a bad picture, but what it is showing is that there are no front jack points. No rust there either. I'm not sure what happened...
    Cont...
    "Mira," 1970 Opel GT Working ARA AC, European 2.0L and Midikit
    "Kara," 1972 Opel GT Targa, Welded Doors, Rhinolined

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    Opel "nineteen," going completely topless

    Cont..
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426391652.042230.jpg
    It has really cool pin striping all over!
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426391689.676179.jpg
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426391713.765413.jpg
    ImageUploadedByAG Free1426391744.506118.jpgImageUploadedByAG Free1426391806.625839.jpg
    Woo! I found a good gas cap with key hidden in the AC console!
    Whoops I accidentally posted early!
    Cont...
    "Mira," 1970 Opel GT Working ARA AC, European 2.0L and Midikit
    "Kara," 1972 Opel GT Targa, Welded Doors, Rhinolined

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