Another Bug... '71 1200

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Another Bug... '71 1200

Postby Stu_B » Tue Feb 10, 2015 11:06 am

I've owned this for a couple of years now and was running it with a basic air setup on the front using a paddle switch:

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Took it off the road about a year ago to fix a few things and ended up stripping it right down for the usual new floors and heater channels but decided to get everything blasted and painted so it's basically turned into a ground up rebuild.

As I already had a tank and compressor I decided it would be silly not to fit some airbags on the rear while the body way off but then I was offered a hydraulic kit… A very early two pump, four dump set up, supplied by Brittania hydraulics in the ‘90s. It belonged to a guy at work who’d only ever run one of the pumps and two of the cylinders on the front of his beetle.

I plan on stripping it all down and won’t be surprised if a lot of it isn’t working or needs replacing but fingers crossed!

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Pictured next to my existing airshock:

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Re: Another Bug... '71 1200

Postby Stu_B » Tue Feb 10, 2015 11:07 am

I received this on another forum which was really interesting to see and read:

Hi Stu, I'm Shawn - using my brothers old account on here to answer your questions, as I'm probably the only person that can.

That's an early 90's hydro 'kit', which Mark Taylor of Britannia Hydraulics used to sell - back then 'juiced' cars pretty much didn't exist at all here in the uk.

The 'kit' wasn't made to fit any car - so back then you'd have to figure that yourself.
It was supplied as a 'coil over' ram style set up, but equally the rams could be used 'coil under' if your particular car suspension allowed.

What you have there is a two pump four dump set up, it will allow you to raise and drop the (front and back) independtly.
It will allow you to raise and then drop a side (side to side) or, by dropping 'dumping' one rear ram after full lift will give (three wheel).
You'd need ideally a battery for each pump - and can add more for very fast movement or hopping.

So here's some pictures from back then of me and bruv, buying one of the first kits off Mark and trying to make it fit - to give you some 'ideas' of how we made the coil over system fit, but, the car was never finished in the end. Probably without adoubt the first juiced bug in the Uk.

Also bear in mind this was near 25 years ago so I'm sure some improvements could be made now - this isn't a 'how to'.. we just trying to see if we could do it.

To fit this to a bug was a huge amount to work - we had to try design and fabricate new suspension mounts for the rams to travel through and function, - from scratch as it hadn't been done before.


At the front - picture shows the first simple mock up of how the front rams would be mounted through the front beam - the beam needed much more modification for strength.

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Trying to fit these at the rear, a whole new frame needed made up into the bodyshell, which was conected to the rear shock towers and rear gearbox cradle for strength.
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With this style of set up (sitting on the coil), adding batteries.. with three batteries running each pump we also ended up hopping - check the 'history' tab at the top of the site, and scroll down-in this link to my beetle to see it, also check out that fully chromed hydro front end and gold plated wheels - a 'lowrider' bug ! ;
http://www.vwrevival.com/

A few years later Iain Sherriff of Max Hydraulics designed a straight bolt on kit using accumulators, also too Ray Ramsey of Rayvern Hydraulics doing the same, making this style of kit (for a bug) obsolete.


With what you have there - you could use just a single pump, remount all four dumps to it, buy rams to easily bolt on where the shocks are - then try use those rams as part of a fluid transfer system, or go accumulators.
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Re: Another Bug... '71 1200

Postby Stu_B » Tue Feb 10, 2015 11:12 am

So that’s where I am now! Deciding on the next step. I don’t fancy running it as pictured above, I’m not worried about the fabrication, I’d quite enjoy that, I’m just not keen on running a separate damper as I don’t think there’s any way to make it look nice (I’m running through rods on the front beam and have removed the rear torsion bars and will be making my own uniball springplates), . At the moment I’m keen to source another set of cylinders that will bolt in place of the exiting dampers and use the cylinders that came with the kit to build a fluid displacemet setup using different rated springs for the front and rear.

All this hydraulic stuff is pretty confusing so I’m going to have a lot of questions :give up
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Re: Another Bug... '71 1200

Postby jon » Tue Feb 17, 2015 3:01 pm

dammit i cant see the pics, it appears my IP is getting blocked from most hosting sites ! :mad
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there is no old school, thats just lowriding like its supposed to be!
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Re: Another Bug... '71 1200

Postby pothole » Tue Sep 01, 2015 6:50 pm

I know Shaun and he has run hydro on his beetle for years. When I put my system together last year he was a lot of help and several emails were passed. Once you have an understanding of how the hydros work it will all make sense. If you use the VZI site hydros seem to get slated for being to harsh a ride and that the beetle is to light. That's generally because people who have put the kits on their cars haven't sent them up correctly also a lot of the people who slate it haven't actually experiences hydros and they are just basing their comments on Chinese whispers. A mate of mine who is also on VZI is very air ride based. Once my hydro kit was up and running and he saw it in operation I think it changed his opinion a lot.
Unfortunately I had to sell my beetle earlier in the year as I need to buy a suitable car to make a 70 mile round commute each day. How ever I still have my T5 which I'm just in the process of putting in bags. Out of interest are you selling any of your air ride bits?
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