The Shark! my club rabbit racer build

Simon Tuman

Well-known member
I know Club Rabbit is a dying class, but with the parts I have this is the class that this car fits in the best. I can always upgrade motors later, but I will start with what I have... so without further adieu allow me to introduce the Shark. He was born in 1980 as a Silver Diesel Rabbit. A friend has owned him for a while now and years ago gave him a makeover. He also got some more offroad friendly mods; ie the deerkiller, the indestructible roof rack and the lifted suspension using mk3 and e30 bmw parts, not exactly sure what though. Well, that was pretty much it for the shark, he hasnt been registered in probably 5 years, maybe longer. Ive always had my eye on this car and i finally struck a deal with my friend. He got an old set of seats from a california edition 78 rabbit I had and i get the shark along with some plastic windows he wont be using. He wants to build a scirocco into a race car, but who knows if that will ever happen. Anyways, Ive been memorizing the rules so I can build it properly. Initially I was worried about the motor because its a bored out 1.6 block with 80.45mm pistons, but this is about as close to the max overbore you can go and still be legit, so Im good there. I was also going to get a big valve head from a friend, but luckily he is lagging and a closer inspection of the rule book told me this wasn't legal. I still have the stock injected head from my 80 jetta coupe, but Im trying to get a carb head from a friend since he wants fuel injection and I want his carb head along with his weber carb (32/36 downdraft). Also going to have some racing buckets from another friend. If I remember right they werent anything special, but free is free so I will take them. My goal is to have this thing running and ready to go for the 2012 season. Anyways, if your still reading, you probably want me to shut up and post some pics, so thats what I will do.

shark-1.jpg


sharkface.jpg


shark_enginebay.jpg


heres some pics i have so far of whats going in the engine bay. i have all the gaskets and bearings and will be building it in my garage. this will be my 4th engine build, all 4 cyl vws.

80.45mm pistons
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old 1.6 stripped down
oldblock.jpg


the "new" block waiting
newblock.jpg



Ive got some work to do obviously. For those wondering, no im not using the suspension on it, nor the other offroad parts. I have some Bilstein sports, along with some h&r coilover springs (400fr/ 345rr). I have another friend with an Autopower roll cage that I will probably buy as one of the last pieces. I think for wiring I am going to get a painless wiring setup as I know someone selling a fusebox for $100... well thats enough out of me for now. Lets hear what you have to say

-Simon
 

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kyle_nickels

"The Okie"
Cool. Always room for another Rabbit. There are still some out there and they are economical to run. And they sound way better than that whinney rotary group.
 

Simon Tuman

Well-known member
Cool. Always room for another Rabbit. There are still some out there and they are economical to run. And they sound way better than that whinney rotary group.

Yes, this is a very budget based build. That doesnt mean I am out there to just cruise around. Not sure how much less power this will make than the other cars on the track, but it looks like I will have a nice weight advantage over most of the other cars out there. Time to see what the lil 1.6 8v can do! So far Im into the car a little over $600. The cage will cost another $500, and I will have most of the parts I need. There will be more, but I have almost everything pretty much ready to go.

Looks great Simon. Can't wait to see another bunny out on track!!

Thanks Brad, believe it or not, but you and Brendon are HUGE inspirations for me. It will be nice to be on the track with you guys. btw Im in Lynnwood now too, you should come by one of these days and check out my other project. Its a LOT more exciting than this thing.

Whatever you do, keep the paintjob!!! Very cool!

It wouldnt be the Shark without it! I will be making a small change to it, but it will hardly be noticeable.

So I wanted to start assembling the motor tonight since I got all my gaskets and bearings earlier this week from German Auto Parts, but I realized I dont have any assembly lube, so it will have to wait until tomorrow. I was determined to get something done, so I took some old parts and cleaned them. Less dirt equals less weight!!

moreparts.jpg


my h&r springs arrived! these things look brand new. im so excited. i cant wait to build some coilovers and bring the shark down to earth

springs1.jpg


springs2.jpg


anybody spy the awesome polo g40 valve cover? ;)

I have some questions that Im hoping you guys can help me answer. I will probably have a machine shop go over and clean the bores ( I still see some crosshatching, but its not as clean as Id like it. ) That said, I got to thinking about bumping the compression ratio. I havent seen anything about it in the rule, am I free to go crazy? I still need it to be reliable & driveable as I plan on registering the car for the road and driving it to the track and driving it home, so I dont want to go any higher than 10:1, maybe 10.5:1 max. Is that legal? I didnt see anything telling me otherwise.
 

kyle_nickels

"The Okie"
Stock pistons must be used. 1402e2 states valve modifications and port matching. The intent of the conference rules is that if it does not say it's ok to do something, dont. Surfacing the head to raise compression ratio is limited to .5:1 over stock. Best practices is to not read between the lines.
 
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Richard Broadhead

Flag & Com
Who drives the rather unbelievably fast Orange Rabbit??

GOOD LUCK to you Simon with the build.

When you're ready to come to the track 'ease' in to it. Rabbits were (are) a popular car with rookie drivers. About 3 years ago, two of them came out and, before even completing their Novice program the cars were 'balled up' and the drivers were never seen again... sigh.

Turn 5 eats newbies (LOVES Rabbit).... LISTEN to your mentors and heed their advice.
 

nickrice20

Well-known member
Awesome looking race car I must say. Also Brad Greco drives the incredibly fast orange Rabbit and he is a blast to watch at the track and a very nice guy. I can't wait to see this shark in action.
 

Simon Tuman

Well-known member
GOOD LUCK to you Simon with the build.

Turn 5 eats newbies (LOVES Rabbit).... LISTEN to your mentors and heed their advice.

Thanks for the warning! I will definitely be taking my time and taking any and all advice from the pros. Luckily this motor shouldnt be too much for me to handle, but I will be taking it easy until Ive learned the limits of the car. Ive owned a lot of A1 chassis VWs so it wont be my first time pushing it, but I am a newb on the track so I dont want to wreck the car.

I started building the bottom end, internals are all in and torqued down. I still need to install some more parts before I can call it complete.

assembledblock1.jpg


assembledblock2.jpg


boostit.jpg
 

tkolbo

Tyler Kolbo Group 5 #117
Simon,

If you are in need of parts, let me know. I have spares from 3 different club rabbits. I may be selling my Weber carb/manifold set up. It was well set up for the Club Rabbit application. I am evolving my Jetta into different classes, so most of the Club rabbit parts are now collecting dust.

Neither of my rabbits survived. One got destroyed in 5b at PR. The other got bent too. Most of the parts from my second rabbit plugged right into the Jetta.

best of luck.

tyler
 

Simon Tuman

Well-known member
Tyler,

I may have to take you up on that offer, not sure if i want to go through the hassle of converting someone elses car to FI just to get the carb.How much would you want for it?

Turn 5 killed a rabbit, hmm I feel like someones warned me about that turn eating up rabbits ;)

-Simon
 

Simon Tuman

Well-known member
some progress has been made....

finally moved the car from its home of the last 5 years to my place.

movingout.jpg


leaving.jpg


dog seemed sad to see it leave

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ontheroad.jpg


gave the car a lil pressure wash/ bath before throwing it in my garage. the wall was covered from crap off the roof of the car!

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so i got to work installing some parts that were laying around. rear suspension was ready to go in, front still needs some strut caps, or camber plates if i come across a cheap set

downlow.jpg


i like this pic! haha

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im getting close to having a somewhat complete car. still have some time as id like to have it driveable before the new year, but being that the car hasnt moved in a long time, i will probably have to go through and replace all the wheel bearings, brakes, etc..
 

rick_bostrom

Onda Kattan Racing
I would think that at current development levels, 20 laps would be just about enough time for Brad to lap Skip Yokum ... twice ... whew indeed.
 

Richard Broadhead

Flag & Com
HMmmm, Skip is one tough Rabbit for "ANYBODY" to pass when he's in the 'mood'. He's very, very good at using ALL of the track without violating the ' letter of the blocking rule'.
 
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