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Bermoco build
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Bermoco
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 12:27 pm    Post subject: Bermoco build Reply with quote

Hello,
I have what I believe to be a Bermoco dune buggy that was built in 1968. I bought it as a non running basket case on a 1958 king pin frame. My plan is to assemble it and work out all the bugs than disassemble it and have it painted and reassemble. So far I have it running with the tub on it and am working on mounting the hood and windshield. The windshield that came with it is 42&1/2" wide but is too wide for the hood unless I use some type of shims which to me would look bad. Thinking about ordering a new one but am a bit concerned about sizing it properly. The top of the dash is 42" and I believe that would be the correct one to order but I see that they come in 1/4" increments. Were there supposed to be any gasket material between the side posts? I know there is at the top between dash and frame but what about the sides?
Also am wondering what wheels would work out the best. I have standard VW 4 lug on the rear with an 8" wide rim and on the front some kind of 5 lug chevy wheel with the wide 5 lug adapter plate. Want to have wide 5 type of wheel to standardize the buggy and only have 1 spare to fit any axle. Plan on using a wide 5 drum on the rear to accomplish this.
I like the look empi 5 spoke alloys but I think that would limit me to a somewhat narrow tire for the rear. I like the look that it has now with a goodyear 15-10 all terrain truck tire on the rear now but again it is 4 lug.

So to summarize I have 2 questions for now.
1) What is correct windshield frame size?
2) What are best wide 5 wheels to use?

Thanks
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wvbowtieman
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 1:00 pm    Post subject: Re: Bermoco build Reply with quote

Bermoco wrote:
Hello,
I have what I believe to be a Bermoco dune buggy that was built in 1968. I bought it as a non running basket case on a 1958 king pin frame. My plan is to assemble it and work out all the bugs than disassemble it and have it painted and reassemble. So far I have it running with the tub on it and am working on mounting the hood and windshield. The windshield that came with it is 42&1/2" wide but is too wide for the hood unless I use some type of shims which to me would look bad. Thinking about ordering a new one but am a bit concerned about sizing it properly. The top of the dash is 42" and I believe that would be the correct one to order but I see that they come in 1/4" increments. Were there supposed to be any gasket material between the side posts? I know there is at the top between dash and frame but what about the sides?


If your windshield is in good shape I would just make some 1/4" shims out of PVC or wood and coat with a spray on bed liner. Mine was really off with the shape of my hood/dash and just cut out a PVC wedge and covered with shaker can bed liner.

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Finished shim and painted.
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Bermoco
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 1:12 pm    Post subject: Bermoco build Reply with quote

Thank you for your quick reply. Your buggy certainly looks good. What is securing the windshield on the other side? Do you have a metal frame or is it just secured to the fiberglass with nuts and fender washers?
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wvbowtieman
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 1:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used aluminum plate (6" x 2" x 3/16" thick) with large 1-1/2" stainless fender washers. 1/4-20 stainless bolts with nylock nuts. Top of my window frame sets against the forward roll ball with felt cushions. 90 mph and no movement.
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BL3Manx
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 7:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bermoco, Have you gotten your wheels sorted out and a windshield installed.

I lived in Oakland in the late 60s and had a friend who built and owned a Bermoco, they were a good body. I still have a brochure. How do you know that's what you have?
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Bermoco
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2014 9:25 pm    Post subject: bermoco build Reply with quote

Hello BL3Manx,
Thank you for asking. A quick recap is in order. I originally thought I would build an inexpensive and fun dune buggy quickly from a project that had been abandoned. Well, once you get into it you keep wanting to do "a little more". So now I have several wheel and tire combinations as well as a new windshield. That is part of the fun with these projects.
My latest roadblock is dealing with the slight warpage of the body from being separated from the pan for so long. I have found a wealth of information from this website as well as the book "Building a Dune Buggy The Essential Manual". While I have worked on many VW cars in the past putting together a buggy from a pickup load of parts without instructions and making it look good was not as easy as I thought it would be. I have already cobbed it together it and drove it on local streets which gave me great satisfaction, but I want it to be better than just a beater. The rear of the buggy at the tunnel had quite a gap but after a bit of research I was able to slowly work that gap out by using long bolts and slowly torquing them down. The back of the body looked slightly lower on one side so I am going to look at the rear spring plates and pan to make sure that the pan is square, plumb, and not twisted. It really is not that big of a deal but once you start looking at things you have a more critical eye.
As far as being certain it is a Bermoco it seems to have all the same features that were described from previous posts and from an ad for Bermoco on the Dune Buggy Archives. Also the paperwork that I got with the buggy showed that it was built in 1968 and the original owner lived in Fremont California which is not too far from Berkeley California where Bermoco was based. It has a super thick body as well as the triangular gussets under the fenders and the squared off box at the rear over the carburator/ license plate area. The fiberglass is over 1/2 inch thick in some spots. That is what drew me to this car. Some of the other Manx clones I looked at were super thin.
I would like to see your brochure some time. Is it the same one as the one on the Dune Buggy Archives?
Thanks,
Bart
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BL3Manx
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 12, 2014 11:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't see a brochure on the DBA, you have a link?

PM me your email, I'll scan and send you what I have.
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Bermoco
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 9:12 pm    Post subject: Windshield to hood fitment Reply with quote

Have a new problem. The windshield frame to the hood sealing surface has a fairly large gap at the ends. Has anyone else dealt with this problem?

Also would like to eventually install a Sombrero top. The proper distance from the rear of the windshield to the back seat rest should be 60 inches? The surface on top of the hood to mount the windshield is around 3" wide so depending on how far forward you place the windshield would impact the rake or angle of the windshield tilt.

Don't want to make a mistake on the the mounting. Any ideas would be appreciated.



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BL3Manx
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 11:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's a rubber seal which fits between the bottom windshield cross bar and the hood which will probably close the gap. The seal is H shaped and the two upper lips fit around the bottom of the windshield the bottom lips lay flat on top of the hood and the dash like this _U_ . The seal will probably fill the gap but it won't lay flat at the end.

http://www.pacificcustoms.com/ac845025.html

I'd try the seal first but if its not good enough and you really want to make the top edge of the dash/hood straighter, you could consider making a few cuts across the bend/warp then laying the dash upside down on a 2 x 4 or square steel tube and using a large clamp to pull down the corners, then build up fiberglass mat inside the dash to hold the shape and fill/smooth the cuts after.

This thread will show a similar job. Other's on the Samba have altered the shape of their buggies, sometimes to fit the chassis better, with this type of "plastic surgery".

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=588675

The windshield bolts should be right on the seam between the hood and dash. BTW, the Kafer Bar support you built/installed is real nice work. You should post some pics here.
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Bermoco
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 01, 2015 6:50 pm    Post subject: Bermoco build Reply with quote

Thanks BL3Manx. I always look forward to your advice and posts. My build was hung up by the slight rear body sag and came up with a kafer bar style as you suggested to others. Made posts to the thread for rear body spacer as it seems like this is somewhat of a common problem with some buggies.

I did a test fit of the windshield with the gasket but it looks like it won't flatten down enough at the edges. Plastic surgery may be needed.

I know the Manx has a separate dash but mine is one piece to the hood. How close is the windshield usually to the wiper shaft openings?

Here are some pics of support and the area where the rear seat was rubbing on trans. Also check out the custom alteration the previous owner did to accommodate the doghouse cooler.
All comments are welcome.
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