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Two Seater Buggy Chassis, which to buy?

'84 Bronco II

El Chingón
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After being out at Sand Hollow for Trail Hero, I think I caught the buggy fever :laughing:

I want to do a small two seat buggy with room for a small cooler and tool bag and no frills, but I am pretty sure I want a V8 car (probably a 302/5.0L since I have a couple of extras lying around). I'd love to design and build my own chassis, but that is a lot of time and work, and buying a chassis would probably be the better route for me to go. That said, what are some chassis I should be looking at?

My buddy that I rode with during Trail Hero has a BFR CK1 chassis with a 6.0L and I like it a lot, but there are a few things I don't like about it. I am a tall guy (6'4") and I can't comfortably drive it since my legs are tight on the wheel (I think he has a 14" wheel) and my knee is hanging out the door bar with my foot on the pedals. The second thing is that it is a rear radiator chassis and the fans are loud as hell right behind your head and makes it really hard to hear people outside the car.

The new BFR CH2 chassis claims "The cockpit is slightly smaller, but the seat angle is reclined just a touch more. The B-Pillar is moved back just a little more to give that little extra room for the big guys." but I would be curious if anyone can vouch for tall guys being able to fit since they also claim that the cockpit is even smaller? It is still a rear radiator mount design and I would prefer a front mount.

I sat in another guys Rock Lizard, and it actually seemed to be a bit roomier inside, but I am not sure how much of that was because he was running a super tiny steering wheel (like the size of the low-rider chain wheels) and I think it was the "lurch" version that isn't on their website anymore. The other big issue with the Rock Lizard is that you can't really run a V8 in one.

I really like the looks of the Goatbilt JHF two seater chassis, but my biggest reservation is whether or not I would fit in one. Does anyone have any insight on this one?

What other chassis should I be looking at?
 
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My vote is the JHF or the BFR. I like the style of the BFR a little better but i ended up with the JHF chassis. I know the JHF goes together incredibly easy. I've done 2 now and Drew is very helpful.
I have talked with Tim at BFR and he is just as helpful. I don't think you could go wrong with either.

The lizzard is a cool chassis for what it is. What it is not, is easy to stab a V8 in. Its too narrow IMO. Not impossible by any means, but you will be modifying it to make it happen.
 
I have been to sand hollow in my full bodied rig and know if I end up going to trail hero I will want a buggy. Since your saying the same maybe it's best I don't go. lol

What would you be using it for? Strictly crawling with air shocks? Or general trail rig for desert and rocks with coilovers? I have looked at the rock lizard and they would be my pick if I could fit in it (6'5") They seem to be the most bare which equates to lightweight. If your looking for crawling only do you think you need a V8? Maybe do a smaller turbo motor?
 
My vote is the JHF or the BFR. I like the style of the BFR a little better but i ended up with the JHF chassis. I know the JHF goes together incredibly easy. I've done 2 now and Drew is very helpful.
I have talked with Tim at BFR and he is just as helpful. I don't think you could go wrong with either.

The lizzard is a cool chassis for what it is. What it is not, is easy to stab a V8 in. Its too narrow IMO. Not impossible by any means, but you will be modifying it to make it happen.

Honestly, I am leaning towards the JHF over the BFR, but not having personally sat in one, I appreciate the feedback. I like the rectangular tubing "frame" rails, the front mount radiator, and personally I like the lines better (simple and functional). What I am most concerned about is how I would fit in one. As I mentioned, I am 6'4" and 180-200 Lbs depending on how much beer I have been drinking, so I am curious how you think I would fit? Most of my height is in my legs, my torso isn't a whole lot taller than the average person when seated.

I have been to sand hollow in my full bodied rig and know if I end up going to trail hero I will want a buggy. Since your saying the same maybe it's best I don't go. lol

What would you be using it for? Strictly crawling with air shocks? Or general trail rig for desert and rocks with coilovers? I have looked at the rock lizard and they would be my pick if I could fit in it (6'5") They seem to be the most bare which equates to lightweight. If your looking for crawling only do you think you need a V8? Maybe do a smaller turbo motor?


Sand Hollow is definitely a lot more fun in a buggy :grinpimp:

My biggest issue with the Rock Lizard as I mentioned is not being able to run a V8 (easily anyways), and even though I am looking for something pretty minimalist, I think it may be too minimal. I just sat in one briefly, so I am not sure if there is much space for a cooler and tools. Part of the reason I want a v8 is because I already have a few I could use, and sometimes having V8 power comes in handy for giving a bump, blasting up soft sand hills, and climbing big rock slabs. Plus, a V8 sounds better and is just more fun :flipoff2: A turbo 4 banger might be able to get the job done, but I am sure I would spend more time and money going that route than just stabbing in a V8.
 
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Goatbuilt Ibex two seater is what I would go with. If I were you I would even opt for the +2" or 4" taller version. Im 6'-3" 200# and have sat in a few of them and they are just big enough, no extra room. They also have a 4 seater, so make sure you are looking at the 2 seat version.
The subframe, link mounts, suspension design and all the extra parts can save so much time and you dont have to design everything from scratch. You can make or purchase just about anything on the Ibex buggys. Plus they use Domex100 for the subframe which is lighter and stronger than trying to make it out of DOM, rectangle tube, or regular plate. The old site has tons of builds and info on the Ibex.
 
talk to PJ at M&M Offroad. he makes a badass 2 & 4 seater. I have one of his 4 seaters.
 
BFR also has different chassis that aren't as small as the cliffhanger. They accommodate v8s, room for a cooler, and from what I've seen there's room for long legs.
 
Another vote for BFR, it's definitely worth your while to spend some time talking to Tim. You're likely not the first one to have those questions and he's built/tweaked the chassis design to fit just about any layout & powertrain imaginable.
 
I would not get a rock lizard if you're a big guy and want room (for yourself, cargo, engine, etc). Thomas is awesome and I wouldn't hesitate to buy from him again, and he has a lot of lizard variants and will work with you and customize to your needs, and there's a few v8 lizards out now, but mine has been an utter bitch to cram myself and my 6.0 into and that's after making it 2" taller and 10" wider and longer. The lizard chassis is cool, but it's more focused on toyota/samurai conversions. Can a v8 be done? Many people have, though personally in retrospect I wish I went with something a bit roomier or more layout for a v8 from the get go.

I like the bomber and trent fab buggies the most personally.
 
Did you talk to an old guy from the south in a yellow buggy that used to be a bronco2 lol jhf is what you want it'll fit a big guy no problem. If the m&m is anything like a Jim's garage car the door openings are awkward to get in if your a big guy.
 
After being out at Sand Hollow for Trail Hero, I think I caught the buggy fever :laughing:

I want to do a small two seat buggy with room for a small cooler and tool bag and no frills, but I am pretty sure I want a V8 car (probably a 302/5.0L since I have a couple of extras lying around). I'd love to design and build my own chassis, but that is a lot of time and work, and buying a chassis would probably be the better route for me to go. That said, what are some chassis I should be looking at?

My buddy that I rode with during Trail Hero has a BFR CK1 chassis with a 6.0L and I like it a lot, but there are a few things I don't like about it. I am a tall guy (6'4") and I can't comfortably drive it since my legs are tight on the wheel (I think he has a 14" wheel) and my knee is hanging out the door bar with my foot on the pedals. The second thing is that it is a rear radiator chassis and the fans are loud as hell right behind your head and makes it really hard to hear people outside the car.

The new BFR CH2 chassis claims "The cockpit is slightly smaller, but the seat angle is reclined just a touch more. The B-Pillar is moved back just a little more to give that little extra room for the big guys." but I would be curious if anyone can vouch for tall guys being able to fit since they also claim that the cockpit is even smaller? It is still a rear radiator mount design and I would prefer a front mount.

I sat in another guys Rock Lizard, and it actually seemed to be a bit roomier inside, but I am not sure how much of that was because he was running a super tiny steering wheel (like the size of the low-rider chain wheels) and I think it was the "lurch" version that isn't on their website anymore. The other big issue with the Rock Lizard is that you can't really run a V8 in one.

I really like the looks of the Goatbilt JHF two seater chassis, but my biggest reservation is whether or not I would fit in one. Does anyone have any insight on this one?

What other chassis should I be looking at?

I've spent 5 years test fitting every chassis I could find. The rocklizards & JHF aren't anywhere close to fitting me. The Ibex is fine but still cramped.

Got a BFR Evo3. Mine is front radiator and hella comfortable for tall people (I'm 6'4 too). I love it.

fetch
 
Did you talk to an old guy from the south in a yellow buggy that used to be a bronco2 lol jhf is what you want it'll fit a big guy no problem. If the m&m is anything like a Jim's garage car the door openings are awkward to get in if your a big guy.

Ha, yeah that was me. Glad to hear a JHF should work since that is the direction I am leaning.
 
Goatbuilt Ibex two seater is what I would go with. If I were you I would even opt for the +2" or 4" taller version. Im 6'-3" 200# and have sat in a few of them and they are just big enough, no extra room. They also have a 4 seater, so make sure you are looking at the 2 seat version.
The subframe, link mounts, suspension design and all the extra parts can save so much time and you dont have to design everything from scratch. You can make or purchase just about anything on the Ibex buggys. Plus they use Domex100 for the subframe which is lighter and stronger than trying to make it out of DOM, rectangle tube, or regular plate. The old site has tons of builds and info on the Ibex.

The Ibex doesn't look bad, but it is bigger and more expensive than the JHF which I would prefer assuming I can drive one comfortably.

I've spent 5 years test fitting every chassis I could find. The rocklizards & JHF aren't anywhere close to fitting me. The Ibex is fine but still cramped.

Got a BFR Evo3. Mine is front radiator and hella comfortable for tall people (I'm 6'4 too). I love it.

fetch

I wish BFR had better details on the sizes of their newer chassis on their website. Do you know what the difference is supposed to be between the Evo 3 and the Evo 3R? Have you been around a CK1 to know how that compares to your Evo 3 since that is my primary point of reference?
 
I wish BFR had better details on the sizes of their newer chassis on their website. Do you know what the difference is supposed to be between the Evo 3 and the Evo 3R? Have you been around a CK1 to know how that compares to your Evo 3 since that is my primary point of reference?

The difference between the Evo3 and Evo3R is the 2" main structure vs 1.75. Mine is the R version with 2" bars.
I have been around a CK1. Matter of a fact, I was there when your buddy picked his up and helped him load. The Evo3 is bigger. But you can't have it both way. Lots of room for a 6'4 guy or tiny chassis.

Once again, I have no sat into a production chassis as comfortable as this one. Unless they were one off custom ones but that's not the point of this discussion.

You should call/email Tim, he's more than willing to share info with you. He's one of the most helpful guys I know in the game.

IDK what JFH you've tried but I couldn't fit in one. At all.
 
The difference between the Evo3 and Evo3R is the 2" main structure vs 1.75. Mine is the R version with 2" bars.
I have been around a CK1. Matter of a fact, I was there when your buddy picked his up and helped him load. The Evo3 is bigger. But you can't have it both way. Lots of room for a 6'4 guy or tiny chassis.

Once again, I have no sat into a production chassis as comfortable as this one. Unless they were one off custom ones but that's not the point of this discussion.

You should call/email Tim, he's more than willing to share info with you. He's one of the most helpful guys I know in the game.

IDK what JFH you've tried but I couldn't fit in one. At all.

Small world. I appreciate all the input since it is impossible to sit in all these different chassis before I make a decision. I am not necessarily looking for "lots of room," but I want enough that I won't have to contort into an uncomfortable/unsafe driving position. I am looking for a pretty small chassis though. I think if the CK1 had 2-4" more between the A and B pillars I would be able to comfortably drive it since it isn't bad riding passenger as is. Regardless, it sounds like I'll have to get the skinny from Tim.
 
why a v8? plenty of smaller displacement engines that will put out more power stock than a 5.0
 
Tribe 16 builds a bad ass trail chassis that will fit a V8 no problem!!!!!!!!
 
Honestly, I am leaning towards the JHF over the BFR, but not having personally sat in one, I appreciate the feedback. I like the rectangular tubing "frame" rails, the front mount radiator, and personally I like the lines better (simple and functional). What I am most concerned about is how I would fit in one. As I mentioned, I am 6'4" and 180-200 Lbs depending on how much beer I have been drinking, so I am curious how you think I would fit? Most of my height is in my legs, my torso isn't a whole lot taller than the average person when seated.

I am 6ft even and 180lbs. There is honestly not a lot of leg room in my JHF chassis. It would not matter what motor you put in it if you plan to use the chassis and dog house the way it was designed. The foot well is just enough for my 2 size 9.5 shoes with not much extra. Anything could be modified, but i dont see how i could gain much at all with my 6.0 stuffed in there.
It works for me as I look at it as the price i pay to play the buggy game. Then again, if i were bigger it may be more of a concern.
I agree with others that said talk to Tim at BFR. before i bought a chassis i emailed back and forth with him for a while. He was really helpful just as other's mentioned.
 
why a v8? plenty of smaller displacement engines that will put out more power stock than a 5.0

I'm with you on the 5.0L part.


They make shitty HP/torque numbers for a V8. A 347 stroker kit would help but still...... Id pass on the 5.0

Because I already have two good 5.0Ls laying around and I am a Ford guy :flipoff2:

If I weren't going to use one of the 5.0Ls I already have, I would probably go with a 5.8L. If I were going to run a bone stock engine, I would probably go with a 6.0L LQ4/LQ9, but I am not sure that I could stomach putting a Chevy engine in my rig, and I am not the kind of guy who would run an engine as-is out of the junkyard without doing a rebuild. You can make 300HP with a 5.0L without even trying (basically just a mild cam swap and tune in an Explorer engine which I have), and if you are rebuilding an engine anyways, it costs almost nothing to stroke out to 347ci which will get you up around 400HP without breaking too much of a sweat.
 
Campbell ent grizzly, if they are still building them wouldn't be a bad choice not super small but not crazy big either.
10313566_10152480320189021_5526570189828680481_n.jpg
 
I worked with a friend to build mine, he literally stretched his subframe design 6 inches and worked around what I wanted to do. I fit in his buggy but not well at 6'4", just getting in proved difficult for me. I ended up with a buggy that's 6" to the top of the roof on 40's that I fit in perfectly and actually can still move my pedals further out if desired. I sat in a bunch of buggies before this and even things like the Liquid Iron 4400 cars were just too damned small inside. We talked a lot before building my chassis and really tried to work it around me being tall, it fitting in my shop still loaded on the trailer and being able to do everything well.
 
I am 6ft even and 180lbs. There is honestly not a lot of leg room in my JHF chassis. It would not matter what motor you put in it if you plan to use the chassis and dog house the way it was designed. The foot well is just enough for my 2 size 9.5 shoes with not much extra. Anything could be modified, but i dont see how i could gain much at all with my 6.0 stuffed in there.
It works for me as I look at it as the price i pay to play the buggy game. Then again, if i were bigger it may be more of a concern.
I agree with others that said talk to Tim at BFR. before i bought a chassis i emailed back and forth with him for a while. He was really helpful just as other's mentioned.

Good to know. Definitely sounds like I would want to sit in one since it will probably be too small, although I am willing to sacrifice some comfort to be in a smaller chassis.

Campbell ent grizzly, if they are still building them wouldn't be a bad choice not super small but not crazy big either.

Looks like an attractive option, I'll have to do some research :smokin:

mate it to a c6 or something and enjoy a nice powerful ford package

https://performanceparts.ford.com/part/M-6007-23TA

M-6007-23T.jpg

For $6,550 I could make a shit ton more power than 310HP from my 5.0L :laughing: That is literally just a cam swap away on my Explorer 5.0L.

I want a V8, I am going to run a V8, and it will probably be a 5.0L. I understand you can get good power out of small motors and LS engines, but I already own the 5.0Ls and have several SBF drivetrain components to choose from just sitting around, so it seems silly to go out and buy a different engine/drivetrain combo. Most of the chassis I am looking at have room for a V8, except the Rock Lizard, which I am honestly not that hot on to begin with.
 
I worked with a friend to build mine, he literally stretched his subframe design 6 inches and worked around what I wanted to do. I fit in his buggy but not well at 6'4", just getting in proved difficult for me. I ended up with a buggy that's 6" to the top of the roof on 40's that I fit in perfectly and actually can still move my pedals further out if desired. I sat in a bunch of buggies before this and even things like the Liquid Iron 4400 cars were just too damned small inside. We talked a lot before building my chassis and really tried to work it around me being tall, it fitting in my shop still loaded on the trailer and being able to do everything well.

Who is your friend and what chassis kit does he sell?
 
I wish BFR had better details on the sizes of their newer chassis on their website. Do you know what the difference is supposed to be between the Evo 3 and the Evo 3R? Have you been around a CK1 to know how that compares to your Evo 3 since that is my primary point of reference?

Definitely reach out to Tim. I bought one of the first EVO4 chassis and he was a great help. One thing I would do is, have him setup your link mounts on the chassis. It is worth the extra $$ for the skid/link mounts.
 
For $6,550 I could make a shit ton more power than 310HP from my 5.0L :laughing: That is literally just a cam swap away on my Explorer 5.0L.

I want a V8, I am going to run a V8, and it will probably be a 5.0L. I understand you can get good power out of small motors and LS engines, but I already own the 5.0Ls and have several SBF drivetrain components to choose from just sitting around, so it seems silly to go out and buy a different engine/drivetrain combo. Most of the chassis I am looking at have room for a V8, except the Rock Lizard, which I am honestly not that hot on to begin with.

i have a 96 bronco with a 5.8, a 96 f150 with 5.0, and a 06 tahoe with a 5.3. 5.3 > 5.0 >>> 5.8 my bronco is getting listed at the end of the month, 78% is because the 5.8 is a DOG, 8% california smog laws are stupid so i cant fix the first 78%, the other 14% is because 3 kids in carseats + 2dr suv sucks. i was so sad at the power when i got the bronco.

why not a bomber trail chassis?
 
Who is your friend and what chassis kit does he sell?

Not a full kit just a sub frame with link mounts and axle mounts he uses on the chassis he builds. They all share the same subframe(mines longer) but every buggy he did was based around what the person wanted. I think you missed the point though, at 6'4" I didn't fit in ANY chassis I sat in back then and if I did my head was so close to the roof it was horrible. I'm not even a fat guy just tall and +4 tall seats are needed in my rigs. It's something we had to build around.

Actually I did fit in 1 buggy, Trevors TDI buggy fit me great but he was 6'9" and it was built around him by the guy who helped me.

photo27967.jpg
 
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