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"1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question
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QuarterPanel
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 10:10 am    Post subject: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

Hi all,

I have a new customer who owns a Porsche Speedster replica, supposedly built on a 1983 VW Beetle pan, but some things about it are confusing to me and I was hoping someone here could help me sort them out.

The car needs a rear brake job, as one side is down to metal and the other is not far off. It will obviously need rotors and pads, but I need to figure out how to source them.

The door tag indicates it was built by Automobili Intermechannica Inc. in Santa Ana, California, with a copyright date of 1977. My brief research indicates they were only building replicas from '76-79, so that seems to conflict with the owner's 1983 chassis claim. He has only had the car for a few years, so I'm guessing he may have been told that by the previous owner.

On the underside of the crankcase on some cooling fans it says "mexico", so I'm wondering if this is a mexican chassis car.

This car has rear disc brakes, and I will include pictures in the next post once I figure out how to post them. So in short, does anyone know what year/model/country I should source these brake parts from? Thanks so much!

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57BLITZ
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:43 pm    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

On a type-I VW chassis . . . the VIN is stamped into the backbone near the shift rod access panel . . . take that VIN and look here . . . https://www.thesamba.com/vw/archives/info/bugchassisdating.php
Regarding the rear brakes . . . ATE calipers!
The rotors have been re-drilled . . . originally from a 4-lug vehicle.
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:45 pm    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

That looks like a 914 rotor and possibly 914 caliper? Not sure how it was adapted to the VW chassis? Re-drilled for 5-lug pattern.

Does it have an emergency brake cable/hook-up on the back?
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:53 pm    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

In other words . . . be prepared to do some extra work . . . ya got drill holes in the new rotors!
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 3:57 pm    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

Intermeccanica International Inc. still make makes Speedsters - but moved to Vancouver, BC, Canada in 1981 and slightly renamed the company. Once they moved cars were no longer VW pan based. As pointed out, the VIN should be stamped by factory 4" or so in front of the shifter coupler plate on the center tunnel. Since it was built in 1980, I doubt it is a later chassis unless someone put a later MX chassis under it afterwards. Do not destroy those IM stickers - they add to value of vehicle. The hood/trunk alloy hinges should have Intermeccanica cast in them too. Yes look like 914 calipers and rotors - compare to early 911 rear rotors - they should be the same. Are they too far worn to have them trued up?

Go over to SPEEDSTEROWNERS.COM to find many happy IM owners.
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 5:52 pm    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

I owned an 1983 Intermeccanica 356 for many years.

Intermeccanica switched over to tube frame in 1984.

With the redrilled rotors you have you may be better off trying to source a set of rotors that will work with your calipers, but it may not cost you that much more to go with a new rear brake kit that comes with a Porsche 5 bolt wheel pattern.

He's a very busy man, but you may want to contact the Henry, owner of Intermeccanica, to ask for advice. If anyone can steer you in the correct direction it will be him.

Intermeccanica: 604-872-4747

As a previous poster mentioned, speedsterowners.com is a great source for information on Intermeccanica replicas.

Ron
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 7:52 pm    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

Thank you all very much for the replies!

I feel stupid for not noticing the rotors were originally four lug! Man, how did I miss that??

So, I spoke with the owner earlier and he told me he found a piece of paperwork in the car's file that says the car was built on a shortened 1970 VW chassis. It did not specify the country of origin of said chassis, however.

I did not notice whether or not it has any provision for a parking brake, but I do know the car does not have a parking brake installed now. I will have to take another look at the brakes themselves to determine whether it has any provision for one. I don't have access to the vehicle without going to the owner's house, so I'll have to see if he is available this weekend.

Regarding the VIN - is that something I will see by crawling underneath the car to look for it, or from within the interior? It is a "finished" car with nice carpeting and interior, so I doubt the owner will want me to start tearing into any of that to look for it. Hopefully his paperwork is correct in saying it is a 1970 chassis.

As for the rotors, well, the driver's side rear brake has been down to metal for some time now, so the rotor is toast. Very badly scored/screwed up. The passenger side looks ok, but with no beveled edge that I typically see when rotors still have some meat left to play with. However, without knowing its exact origin, I don't have any specs to measure and compare to, so it's very possible the passenger side might be ok. Either way, it will definitely need at least one rotor, and of course pads.

For the sake of argument, if these are 914 rotors/calipers, theoretically I can obtain some 914 pads and rotors and have them redrilled? I know just the person for the job on the redrilling, so that's no issue. Were all 914s the same as far as brakes?

Again, I very much appreciate all your help. I'll definitely be sure to reach out to Henry at Intermeccanica as well for his advice, and post back here with any more questions and updates. Thanks!
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 8:39 pm    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

QuarterPanel wrote:
I did not notice whether or not it has any provision for a parking brake, but I do know the car does not have a parking brake installed now. I will have to take another look at the brakes themselves to determine whether it has any provision for one.

Those are not rear calipers . . . the 914 parking brake adjustment screws are absent.

QuarterPanel wrote:
Regarding the VIN - is that something I will see by crawling underneath the car to look for it, or from within the interior?

The VIN is (or should be) found in the interior . . . just fore of the shift-rod access panel . . . you would need to open the access panel for certain repair/service!

QuarterPanel wrote:
Were all 914s the same as far as brakes?

No . . . the 914-6 is 5-lug . . . BUT you will NOT be able to use them . . . sorry!
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:06 pm    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

So then these are not 914 rotors then presumably?
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 12:14 am    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

QuarterPanel wrote:
So then these are not 914 rotors then presumably?

Those rotors are not from a 914-6 . . . those have 6 cylinder engines and 5-lug wheels!
The 4 cylinder (1.7 & 2.0 engines) 914 Porsches are 4-lug . . . unless they are re-drilled. Wink
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 9:31 am    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

Ah, gotcha. So there's a chance these may just be redrilled 914-4 rotors, with 914 front calipers? I guess it's time to look for some pictures and specs to compare these to.

Edit: these sure look like the same rotors:

http://www.patrickmotorsports.com/part/914-4-rear-brake-disc-rotor-set-5-bolt-stud-conversion/

A quick google image search of "porsche 914 brakes" shows a variety of different brake setups, but none have the caliper top mounted like this car. I wonder what that means?
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 11:45 am    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

QuarterPanel wrote:
Ah, gotcha. So there's a chance these may just be redrilled 914-4 rotors, with 914 front calipers?

That is what I was thinking!

QuarterPanel wrote:

Edit: these sure look like the same rotors: http://www.patrickmotorsports.com/part/914-4-rear-brake-disc-rotor-set-5-bolt-stud-conversion/

That photo does NOT match the description!
The photo shows 4-lug rotors . . . like what is on the car now after having been re-drilled.
The item in the description might be just what the doctor ordered! Idea

QuarterPanel wrote:

A quick google image search of "porsche 914 brakes" shows a variety of different brake setups, but none have the caliper top mounted like this car. I wonder what that means?

That would mean that the car has a special caliper bracket to adapt Porsche calipers to the VW control arm.
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 1:36 pm    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

So I ordered up some Zimmerman 914-4 rear rotors and Ate front pads from Pelican Parts. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this is the right stuff! I'll update back once I get the parts and compare them to what's on the car now.

Thanks everyone for your help!
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 4:21 pm    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

If your new parts do not work correctly,
http://www.cbperformance.com/v/vspfiles/photos/4356-2.jpg

CB Performance sell these rotors and has a rear disc brake kit using them and calilpers like yours. And they also have kits with emergency brakes too.
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2017 10:47 am    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

So the parts came in, and as you can see, the rotors were a perfect match, only needing to be redrilled like the old ones. But have a look at the hub - it was also redrilled! The only reason I can think of that the builders would do that would be to use five lug wheels instead of four, but that seems like a goofy thing to do to accomplish that goal. Why not just use five lug parts in the first place?

However, the pads were not a match. I ordered up both early and late 914-4 front pads, but it turns out these are in fact rear pads and calipers. I guess I and others were thrown off by the lack of e-brake hardware, but they are indeed 914-4 rear calipers and pads, per the existing pad part numbers. The pads were Textar TP22, slightly smaller than the two sets of pads I ordered. So, off to send those back and order up the right ones!

I forgot to take pictures of the new rotor after redrilling and mounting, but it was very easy - I used the threaded holes as well as the original four lug holes to perfectly line up both rotors to each other, so I could then perfectly mark and drill the holes in the exact same place in the new rotor. Very straightforward. No need whatsoever to pay someone else to do it!

I was very pleased with the quality of the new Zimmerman rotors. They seem very well made, and I love the anti-corrosion coating on them. I wish all rotors came that way!

So, on to the pictures.. you can see why it needed a new rotor on the driver's side...


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2017 2:32 pm    Post subject: Re: "1980's" vintage Speedster replica, rear disc brake question Reply with quote

914 rear calipers definitely have integral parking brake mechanism built into the caliper. The builder may have used T3 rear hubs to adapt your brake system, re-drilled to P-5 lug for the availability of wider wheels.

You might try contacting PMB performance for any questions about your calipers - he's an expert on 914 and other P-car brake parts.
http://www.pmbperformance.com/914-brakes.html

Happy Holidays!
Jeff
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