Author Topic: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?  (Read 16104 times)

AndyL

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I know it might sound a bit mad, but I wondered if anyone had supercharged or fitted a turbo to a micro or bubble? There are  units available used on kei cars and some scooters (e.g. Peugeot Jetforce 125) for small displacement engines.

I've seen an Isetta in the States fitted with a positive displacement supercharger which looked like a suck through set-up, but never seen any other details.

Andy
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Bob Purton

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #1 on: August 25, 2014, 05:31:38 PM »
Now your making ME feel uncomfortable Andy! Personally I hate that kind of thing because once you upgrade the performance then you are obliged to upgrade the brakes and suspension so by now the original car has been changed significantly and although some may do this in a manner that it can be changed back easily other lunatics start cutting the cars about. Rum cars is about the preservation of microcars.
You are right about the Americans, they will do anything to vintage vehicles but that's the American tradition of custom car building. They call it customizing, I call it whole sale destruction.
My argument has always been , if a car doesn't do what you want it to do, ie go fast enough, buy a different car.

marcus

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2014, 05:38:16 PM »
Not me!

The problem is that it is relatively easy to fit accessories or different engines to make bubbles and micros go faster. 

However, the clever bit is ensuring that their steering, brakes, suspension, chassis/sub-frame, centre-of-balance, tyre size/behaviour and other factors are all equal to the extra power and speed.

In its most basic sense: if you get your "ripped" bubble/micro into trouble FASTER, can you also get it OUT of trouble or Handle the trouble when it hits?!

Furthermore, if your micro/bubble is at all collectable or valuable, how will that value be affected by altering it from its original specifications?

It is a fact that some bubble/micro cars are/were not particularly well designed even for their modest performance. Others were expertly engineered by experienced companies who managed to  design adequate or even very good braking, steering etc for the engine's performance. Before increasing power and speed I would ask myself "Do I know more about vehicle engineering than....(e.g.) Messerscmitt, Heinkel, Goggomobil, BMW?" If the answer was not EMPHATICALLY YES, then I personally would leave well enough alone!

Another point is that many bubbles and micros were designed to be affordable, and high performance was sacrificed to achieve this. They are what they are for a reason and I think it is fine to like them for what they are and NOT start tinkering. if I want a car with high performance I would choose one designed and built for the purpose, to which end I once had an MG sports car. I loved it just as I loved my Trojan and I never felt any desire to change either of them into something they were never supposed to be.

Just my opinion, it's right for me but others might disagree, it's a free world!
« Last Edit: August 25, 2014, 05:40:13 PM by marcus »
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Chris Thomas

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2014, 05:47:16 PM »
Dear All

Many of the Kei cars do have turbo charged 660 cc engines, and do they go. The Carver one and the Copen both have the turbo charged Diahatsu 660 cc engine, so perhaps you should think of owning one of these, where the job has been done for you.

Chris Thomas
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marcus

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #4 on: August 25, 2014, 05:55:15 PM »
That would be sensible!

Another point I forgot is cooling and heating: if you increase power and performance you might find it hard to find space for bigger rads or increased air-flow. Then you might have to add cooling for your brakes. Then you are going faster so you get more draughts, windows start popping out, you might have to add a bigger heater, and soon enough all the extra gear you are adding cuts down cabin space, adds weight and complication...and you can find yourself on a never-ending spiral of increasing problems and side effects. The Japanes companies are experts in small Kei cars and have been building them for half a century. I think I would trust their expertise a little better than the average hobbyist!
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richard

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #5 on: August 25, 2014, 06:41:41 PM »
you're on the wrong site mate . most of the micro's we have the brakes can only just cope with the 3-12hp already provided
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Rusty Chrome (Malcolm Parker)

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2014, 06:46:43 PM »
Several people have tried replacement engines, particulalry with Reliants and Bond Bugs, but I've never heard of anyone fitting a supercharger or a turbo. I think it would be an interesting exercise if you were building something from scratch with replica bodywork, but like most have said already most microcars are either too rare or minimally engineered to stand even a minor engine boost.

Outside the field of microcars, heres a link to a video of a supercharged Honda 50 racer
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tCURXinXoEg#t=164
More info
http://www.elsberg-tuning.dk/the%20bikes.html

And a company that makes superchargers for small capacity engines.
http://s-charger.com/our-products/

I was only reading the other day about Honda's experiments with a 250cc turbo when they were trying to re-enter 500cc GP racing in the 1980s (then dominated by 2-strokes) with a 4-stroke. As well as their well-known failure the NR500 They also built a 250cc watercooled parallel twin with twin turbos, eight valves per cylinder and oval pistons which gave 150bhp at 20,000 rpm. They felt that with a bit more work 170bhp was possible, but the FIM wouldn't allow them to use it.
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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #7 on: August 25, 2014, 07:08:57 PM »
Anything is possible with determination, money and blah blah blah , there's been cars converted for drag racing with bike engines and what ever , I just can't see the point in taking a 50 year old car trying to get a small turbo on it trying to get it to rev right the finding the gear ratio is completely wrong and watching it go bang , just get a replica shell of a car you like and build a turbo bike engined chassis and plonk it on top

richard

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #8 on: August 25, 2014, 07:27:38 PM »
like you've done steve  ;D
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marcus

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #9 on: August 25, 2014, 07:35:09 PM »
i have an American friend who bought an MGB. He wanted to improve its performance and acceleration by fitting various non-standard improvements, instead of having it for what it was - a fun open top car. The mods he made required other things to be altered, and within a couple of years he had improved it to such an extent that it did not work at all and failed to work so completely that it was stored for 25 years until it required a major restoration and return to original components and specifications, at which pint it finally ran again.
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AndyL

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #10 on: August 25, 2014, 07:59:04 PM »
Okay. Thought I'd be out on my own with this one. Better not go into fuel injection and mapped ignition.... :-X
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Peel replica, Steve Fisk

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #11 on: August 25, 2014, 08:03:53 PM »
Your right there Richard !

Big Al

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #12 on: August 25, 2014, 08:24:42 PM »
Most of these things have been done. The main interest might be impressed at some clever engineering but it does not sit well. Most of these modified cars tend to disappear to other arenas of interest or end up mouldering in a shed. The Berkeley particularly SUFFERING Badly for home improvements rendering the remains pretty much beyond restorability to original, and often of very low value.

For me true microcars are about minimalist motoring. The era of my favoured cars offered no cheaP FORM OF THESE MODIFICATIONS. sO THEY ARE OUT OF PLACE. tHE WORK TO REALLY PRODUCE A ROUNDED CAR FROM THESE BASE UNITS IS FAR GREATER THAN BUYING SOMETHING LAter or building a replica from scratch. So the whole thing seems completely pointless to me and few modified cars have ever really struck me as a viable and sensible modification.

I fear, though, that this is becoming a minority view.
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Bob Purton

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #13 on: August 25, 2014, 10:01:20 PM »
I tend to agree with you Al. Even electronic ignitions fitted to Schmitts and Isetta appear to offer little benefit and when you break down at the side of the road there is nothing to fiddle with to get it going again. You cant really argue that John Bannel hasnt done some great things with his modifications but again they are major reworks, not simple bolt on gadgets. Plus he is a very qualified man, not a tinkerer.
 I'm all for leaving them be.

Big Al

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Re: Anyone on here turbocharged or supercharged a micro or bubble?
« Reply #14 on: August 26, 2014, 12:03:05 AM »
John's Frankenschmitt is impressive. But it really shows what the next Messerschmitt should have been instead of trying to create the Tiger. Having invested in future sales there would have been a budget to create the Tiger, possibly with a few mods making it even better.  So it offers a big question mark. The later Goggo and BMW projects were unlikely to be put forward by the factory, indeed the Martini Coupe was supercharged rather than fuel injected. Yet the 700 drifts away from Micro to light cars, not least as John is a big man and age has caught up with his joints making the Beemer an easier car to access and drive. All are very well presented and worked out. Not the average lob an engine in, stir the wiring and fit some bigger tyres.
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