Rear Engine, Rear Drive, How to do it?
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Rear Engine, Rear Drive, How to do it? Expand / Collapse
Posted 11/14/2012 6:31:38 AM
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First of all, I want to say that what you guys do here is really inspiring! I am a new here, and I'm willing to build my own street legal Tumbler. I have been reading forums and doing a lot of investigation but now I'm stuck with my design because i don't know how to not customize the engine and transmission in order to don't miss the torque and horsepower of the engine. I was thinking I should connect the differential directly to the driveshaft and to the motor, is this the way? Or is it better/easier to make a mid engine? If I can help with this would be helpful!

Sorry for being so noob, im not an engineer, I'm a Economy student, so I hope you can guide me!
Post #88349
Posted 11/14/2012 7:28:52 PM
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Hi batbang and welcome to the forum. Most of the builders on here probably aren't engineers or even tradesman, its a learn as you go kind of thing. So for your question, do you have a body, chassis or anything yet? You're in the 89 batmobile forum so I'm guessing that's your direction. I would imagine most 89's have a front engine, transmission, drive shaft and the diff set up like a standard car. You won't lose noticeable power by having a drive shaft in the drive set up. Really it comes down to where are you going to put the engine and transmission. If you're sticking them in front its not a big problem and options are plenty for engine and trans. If you want to go midmount then you start being more restricted by available space and exactly what engine, trans and diff you will use. Potentially you could also go the way of a transaxle if you want to be different and don't want huge power. If you want big power like most guys, v8 up the front. Remember the 89 is a big car too so you need a bit more. If you don't have a body or chassis, make a template on cardboard or even just draw it on the ground and then mark out the seating position, where the tyres go, where the steering will go, etc and the see what kind of space might be good for your engine. You may also want to take into account balance the weight of the car. All the weight at the back is bad for steering but good for rear traction. All the weight up front can make heavy steering and easier to spin wheels at rear and so it goes. So hope that provides you with some direction and good luck!

Cheers Shane (and don't forget legal requirements if you want to drive on roads)
Post #88359
Posted 11/16/2012 9:16:00 AM

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Smac, good idea, but he stated he wishes to build a Tumbler.

Don Currie likes to steal my work!
Post #88368
Posted 5/27/2014 8:42:10 AM

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Old post but I'll answer it.
You want the engine facing the rear and transmission facing the front. The shortened drive shaft connects to the top end of a "V-Drive" and then a drive shaft from the bottom of that connects to the rear end.
Post #97066
Posted 9/6/2015 10:20:58 AM

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Hi Batbang,

I'm a newbie here too planning my 89. I know this is an old post and I do not know where you are in your project or what direction you decided to go, but I will offer another option to the boat V-drive.

Might I suggest you take a look at using either a 66-78 front wheel drive Tornado or a 67-78 front wheel drive Eldorado for your Tumbler project. The later year models equipped with the 455/500 ci and the TH425 can be built up for high HP and rev capabilities just like a BB Chevy. Best part is the suspension and driveline are already fully integrated for you. All you need to do is build some fixed tie rods for toe-in. Do a search on Tornado 455 FWD / Cadillac 500 FWD and you will get a bunch of hits to see what the 455/500-TH425 setup looks like. If you leave the motor facing forwards, Applied GMC (same setup used in old front wheel drive GMC motorhomes) makes custom gear sets including 4.10s to turn those big swampers. If you mount the motor backwards you can use a standard gear set which will give more ratio options, not to mention it will be easier to access the front end accessory drive. There is also a guy in Iceland (if I remember right) that builds 1000HP capable TH425s with either integral or divorced pumkins.

If you look on YouTube here: you will see a Fiero with the Caddy 500/TH425 setup in it. It looks like this guy mounted it facing aft, so he would have had to replace the reverse rotation ring and pinion with a standard rotation ring and pinion.

I think the Caddy/Tornado setup could potentially be a simpler and more cost effective installation, and not as loud as the straight cut gears in a boat V-drive. Hope this helps offer another potential option for you ar anyone building a Tumbler.


Bat-what?.....Na, it’s just an oversized badass black car (with optional machine guns)
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Posted 9/8/2019 10:27:21 AM
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