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Thread: 81 VW Rabbit Truck

  1. #1

    Array
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    03-16-2019
    Posts
    4
    Location

    Pittsburgh, PA
    Vehicle

    1987 Mitsubishi Mighty Max
    Engine

    G63B

    81 VW Rabbit Truck

    So, recently joined the forums after sponging info from you guys for so long...gonna be starting the work on the ol' Mighty Max soon. Wasn't able to get to it as there was a good amount of work that needed put in on this first. The roller was from an 81 Volkswagen Pickup Truck. The truck was assembled in the New Stanton VW plant, spent its life in Texas before the previous owner had it shipped up to Delaware...he was initially trying to do a VR6 swap into it, till I guess he figured out how much he was gonna need to spend to actually get it to work and abandoned the project...initially he was trying to sell both the truck roller with the vr6 engine and donor car, but my buddy picked up just the roller for a song...felt kinda bad once all was said and done...we were pushing the truck onto the trailer and the owner's 14 year old son came out crying because it sold. Dad was not so nice in a "quit being such a pussy" kinda way...hopefully that kid will get his day.
    So we got the truck back, cleaned it up a little bit, and got it ready for the swap. The truck was originally a gas engine job with a 4 speed stick...donor engine was a 1.6L Diesel with a 5 speed stick that we had previously swapped from an 82 rabbit donor car into an 81 rabbit car...guess the third vehicle is the charm lol...was pretty straight forward, at least in so far as the parts of the swap that I specifically got to deal with. There were a few things that needed to be changed around, such as the shifter linkage tunnel needing to be installed facing the opposing direction and machined down to make room from the linkage to move through the gates...took a couple times to get that right. Kept having to push down in on the shifter to get it pop clear of the gate, but some grinder work corrected that. The original 82 engine harness was used with the 81 engine, so some light additional wiring was required for the glow plug relay and such, and we did have to switch to a different fuel pump, not to mention go through a number of fuel filters since we didn't bother flushing the tank (who wants to do all that?)...as it sits its currently running and driving as a daily for my buddy now. Has new brake lines, hoses, good rotors, calipers and brakes, fuel lines, exhaust, and passenger CV axle...the driver side axle is a bit meh, so that will be getting replaced within the next week...and we swapped the wheels for some old school stylin' snowflakes with new tires.
    Pretty much all that is left to do is body customization, possibly paint, and finish detailing on the interior, body, and engine bay. I'll put up some more photos of it once the project is in a more finished state. All in all, its an awesome little truck, and I only helped out in a minimal regard with getting the build to this point. Apologies if my post isn't properly formatted or anything, only the second time I've ever posted. Hopefully I'll soon be starting up the posts for the build thread on my rattle-canned rampage. Thanks again, MightyRam50...keep on minitruckin'!
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  2. #2

    Array
    Status
    Online
    Join Date
    06-15-2014
    Posts
    3,825
    Location

    Adelaide, South Australia
    Vehicle

    1985 Mitsubishi L200
    Engine

    G63B
    I like the VW Rabbit, it is something out of the ordinary. It's a shame the PO's son took it so hard - his turn will come (and hopefully he'll see the light and get a Max or a D-50 lol) The VR6 would've turned this into a bullet. I am completely unfamiliar with water cooled VW's so I wouldn't know what brake and drivetrain upgrades would be compatible with the Rabbit but I bet a lot of them share the same DNA as Golfs etc. Thanks for sharing!
    support the forum that supports you - join and donate to MightyRam50.Net Get perks and donations $15 USD and over receive official MightyRam50.Net window decals

  3. #3

    Array
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    03-16-2019
    Posts
    4
    Location

    Pittsburgh, PA
    Vehicle

    1987 Mitsubishi Mighty Max
    Engine

    G63B
    And he was able to track down a sick cap for it!Click image for larger version. 

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