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Old 05-07-2011, 07:00 PM
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Join Date: May 2009
Location:
wasilla, AK, USA
Car: 1999 new beetle. 2 liter
Default suspension lift options

alright. i apologize in advance.

i know this topic is scattered all over the forum. im hoping we can centralize all the threads concerning this topic here.

i want to do a lift on the beetle. i live in alaska. and would prefer to drive the car as much as possible. many roads are unpaved and have rocks scattered about them. ive had a close call on the oil pan already. i will be adding a skid plate. but id rather not skid.


im looking for feedback on any processes that provide a lift.

i want to be able to drive on most roads without worrying about skidding. i also want to be able to put decent amount of weight in the trunk, and possible add a hitch to tow a 4 wheeler or small boat. however i dont want to completely give up on a semi smooth ride.

ive heard of the metal nerd spacers, and using jetta wagon or beetle convertable springs to provide a lift. just looking for the best and most affordable options, and also the compromises on handling and ride quality. any and all input and suggestions is appreciated. (just dont sugggest to but a truck, haha)

and if you can, suggest where to get those things from...

thanks all
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Old 05-07-2011, 07:35 PM
DZLBUG's Avatar
I Am Breitbart
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location:
Sauk Rapids, MN, USA
Car: 2000 New Beetle GLS TDI Silver Arrow
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Springs sag over time, just get the Metalnerd 2" kit and be done with it. Wagon springs are probably going to be too stiff for you. You can also upsize the tires some, I run tires that are about 26.3" overall.
__________________
2000 New Beetle GLS TDI
5 speed swap w/SBC Stg 3 clutch and Dieselgeek short shifter, RC3, PP520's, Eurojet SMIC, 3 bar map, Dieselgeek skidplate, 2" lift w/VR6 springs, 2.5" turbo-back straight pipe "weedburner" side exhaust, air horn, ABD Cup front bumper, HID retrofit, LED tails, Bernt Pod w/McNally gauges. WISH LIST: VNT 17/22 hybrid turbo, RC5 and other silly stuff.
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Old 05-07-2011, 09:38 PM
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Location:
wasilla, AK, USA
Car: 1999 new beetle. 2 liter
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excellent. any suggestion on new shocks and struts?

the suspension is getting tired thats on it....should i replace the sagging springs? how bout recommendation on shocks....and strust.

also...how easy is the rear suspension to work on. something i can accomplish myself? ive heard its not nearly as complicated as the front end? what other parts can or should be replace. ill probably do the rear end asap. and the front by the end of summer.

thanks again
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Old 05-09-2011, 12:43 PM
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Talking

I designed my own lift kit. Went 3" with is about the max you can go without getting into some serious mods. Stuffed some 235/75/15 allterrains in there with minor rubbing issues. Still have some more things to do but so far I'm very pleased with the outcome.
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Old 05-10-2011, 04:54 AM
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Downey, CA, USA
Car: 1999 1.8T, 5 Speed
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235/75-r15 = 28.9".

You say "minor rubbing":
- did you maintain the same wheel offset?
- are you using wheel spacers?
- will minor fender trimming make the rub go away?

Thanks.
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Old 05-10-2011, 11:20 AM
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Rubs on the inner fender plastic when I turn sharp. It can be trimmed or removed. Used 38+ offset with 15 front and 20 rear spacers. Tires are basicaly flush with the fenders. I also have to install a limiter strap on the right side front. The drive shaft will rub if you come off the ground!
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Old 05-10-2011, 05:01 PM
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Car: 1999 1.8T, 5 Speed
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Quote:
Originally Posted by groovyIII View Post
I designed my own lift kit.
Was it that pipe idea from Votex? Got any pics of final product?
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Old 05-11-2011, 12:25 PM
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Lightbulb

I looked at alot of diffent ideas and came up with my own version. I'm still have some things I might change to make it even better. No pictures at this time.
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Old 05-11-2011, 06:55 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location:
Downey, CA, USA
Car: 1999 1.8T, 5 Speed
Default NB Baja Kit

Here's my info ... I bought this vehicle about two months ago with the sole intention of lifting it ... been researching it off/on for the past month or so.

My goals:
1) fire roads up to level 2 with minimal difficulty;
2) maintain daily driver status;
3) nothing custom, e.g., one off shocks/springs;
4) minor plastic/sheet metal trimming is acceptable.

I was keeping this info tight to my chest but honestly, just don't have the time to build a marketable kit, which I'm sure some entrepreneur will very soon ... here's my list, comment positive or negative to refine and improve the "NB Baja Kit":


Lift:
Metalnerd
Custom Accessories - Lift Kit for VW Beetles, Golf, Jetta, Passat - VW Engine Tools from Metalnerd

Springs:
front: VR6 Jetta Wagon, 2 white, 2 blue
rear: Jetta Wagon, 1 white, 4 brown
http://www.idparts.com/

Shocks/Struts:
Bilstein HD for A4
http://www.idparts.com

Wheels:
Bassett D-Hole light weight wheels (not DOT)
15x7, 5x100, centric, 2" (50.8mm) backspacing
Bassett Racing Wheel - IMCA, NASCAR, Late Model, Modified, FWD, 4x4, steel racing wheels

Wheel Spacers:
20mm, front and rear
Eibach Springs : Performance suspension | lowering springs | suspensions | springs | dampers | stabilizers | shocks | sway bars | anti-roll bars | wheel spacer | coil over | engine valves

Tires:
BFG Mud T/A KM2 (NB wheel well size = 29.5")
option 1: 215/75 R15, 27.9" overall diameter, 1.6" leftover
option 2: 235/75 R15, 29.1" overall diameter, .4" leftover

Lift summary:
Lift Kit: +2"
Springs: +1.5"
Shocks/Struts: +.5
Tires: +1.5" (option 1)
Total Gain: 5.5"

Cost Summary (2011 Retail Pricing):
Lift Kit: $ 200
Springs: $ 468
Shocks/Struts: $ 680
Spacers: $ 300
Wheels: $ 311
Tires: $ 556
Total Cost: $2,515 + tax, shipping, misc.

Wish Additional:
Limited Slip, Wavetrac or Peloquin, about $900

I welcome comment, criticism, refinement --and money--to get this bug off the ground.

Carl
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Old 05-12-2011, 12:00 AM
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I Am Breitbart
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location:
Sauk Rapids, MN, USA
Car: 2000 New Beetle GLS TDI Silver Arrow
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wave Chaser View Post
Here's my info ... I bought this vehicle about two months ago with the sole intention of lifting it ... been researching it off/on for the past month or so.

My goals:
1) fire roads up to level 2 with minimal difficulty;
2) maintain daily driver status;
3) nothing custom, e.g., one off shocks/springs;
4) minor plastic/sheet metal trimming is acceptable.

I was keeping this info tight to my chest but honestly, just don't have the time to build a marketable kit, which I'm sure some entrepreneur will very soon ... here's my list, comment positive or negative to refine and improve the "NB Baja Kit":


Lift:
Metalnerd
Custom Accessories - Lift Kit for VW Beetles, Golf, Jetta, Passat - VW Engine Tools from Metalnerd

Springs:
front: VR6 Jetta Wagon, 2 white, 2 blue
rear: Jetta Wagon, 1 white, 4 brown
http://www.idparts.com/

Shocks/Struts:
Bilstein HD for A4
http://www.idparts.com

Wheels:
Bassett D-Hole light weight wheels (not DOT)
15x7, 5x100, centric, 2" (50.8mm) backspacing
Bassett Racing Wheel - IMCA, NASCAR, Late Model, Modified, FWD, 4x4, steel racing wheels

Wheel Spacers:
20mm, front and rear
Eibach Springs : Performance suspension | lowering springs | suspensions | springs | dampers | stabilizers | shocks | sway bars | anti-roll bars | wheel spacer | coil over | engine valves

Tires:
BFG Mud T/A KM2 (NB wheel well size = 29.5")
option 1: 215/75 R15, 27.9" overall diameter, 1.6" leftover
option 2: 235/75 R15, 29.1" overall diameter, .4" leftover

Lift summary:
Lift Kit: +2"
Springs: +1.5"
Shocks/Struts: +.5
Tires: +1.5" (option 1)
Total Gain: 5.5"

Cost Summary (2011 Retail Pricing):
Lift Kit: $ 200
Springs: $ 468
Shocks/Struts: $ 680
Spacers: $ 300
Wheels: $ 311
Tires: $ 556
Total Cost: $2,515 + tax, shipping, misc.

Wish Additional:
Limited Slip, Wavetrac or Peloquin, about $900

I welcome comment, criticism, refinement --and money--to get this bug off the ground.

Carl
For starters, Bilstein HD struts will not work with the Metalnerd spacers since those struts have a bigger diameter shaft.

You are also overly ambitious with the tire size, that 1.8T is not going to be happy trying to turn those tires with stock gearing. The sheer weight of them is also going to do wacky things with the handling, and it is going to severely shorten the life of your ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings and suspension bushings. I would keep them to 26.3"-26.5" diameter. General Grabber AT2's come in 205/70/15, which won't generate too much difference in gearing and won't have the weight penalty. They will also be a much better tire on pavement than those MT's.

One more thing, those heavy duty wagon springs are going to set the a$$-end WAY higher than the front and its going to look goofy. NB's are pretty light in back, and you are going to get more lift than you will up front.
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Old 05-12-2011, 01:27 PM
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Lightbulb

I'm running 29's with a 2.0 and it handles them fine. Granted it accelerates slower but all around performance isn't to bad. As far as the wagon spring height you lift the rear 2" and the front 3". I'm still using the stock springs in the front so it's softer than the rear. Any ideas on stiffening there would be appreciated. All in all it rides and drives close to stock. There is of course more body roll which is the nature of the beast. As far as being hard on parts I'm sure it is, only time will tell how hard. I'ts still a work in progress so I will learn as I go.
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Old 05-13-2011, 04:26 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location:
Downey, CA, USA
Car: 1999 1.8T, 5 Speed
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DZLBUG View Post
Bilstein HD struts will not work with the Metalnerd spacers since those struts have a bigger diameter shaft.
Wave Chaser: Do you have a different recommendation? Do you know if the Metalnerd spacers can be honed out? Searching here, because I've read conflicting information, some say "will work", others, "won't".

Quote:
Originally Posted by DZLBUG View Post
You are also overly ambitious with the tire size...
Wave Chaser: Not so sure, consider the following:
~ stock wheels, about 22#
~ stock tires, about 22# (205/55 R16)

~ suggested Bassett wheels, about 16#
~ suggested 215/75 R15, about 34#
~ option 2, 235/75 R15, about 40#

Yes, 6# difference, yes, I understand centrifugal force and rotational weight, but I can't imagine 6# is going to markedly degrade the life of my suspension; 12# difference for option 2, you might have a point. Oh, T/A vs M/T, I accept the trade off.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DZLBUG View Post
...those heavy duty wagon springs are going to set the a$$-end WAY higher than the front...
Wave Chaser: You might have a point ... but if so, can't I just choose to remove the spacer from the rear (-2") and balance fore/aft? I agree, the "tilted look" would look ridiculous.

Carl
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Old 05-13-2011, 04:30 AM
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Car: 1999 1.8T, 5 Speed
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Quote:
Originally Posted by groovyIII View Post
As far as the wagon spring height you lift the rear 2" and the front 3".
Are you saying the Jetta Wagon springs level the car out?
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  #14 (permalink)  
Old 05-13-2011, 12:37 PM
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What I am saying is lift the front than lift the rear to the same height. I lifted the front, put on the stock wheels and tires than simply measured the front and back height at the fender lip. In my case the rear was 2" lower so I built the rear spacers at 2".

Last edited by groovyIII; 05-13-2011 at 03:34 PM..
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