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LouKoff last won the day on August 7 2018

LouKoff had the most liked content!

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Not Telling
  • Location
    Saint Paul
  • Referral
    Finding info on Brats
  • Biography
    Mechanical engineering student building my dream first gen brat
  • Vehicles
    2000 Impreza OBS, 1978 Brat, 1983 Brat

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LouKoff's Achievements

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Advanced Member (3/11)



  1. Thanks, I tried to baby it for a while and then came to a realization that after all the work and money I put into it to make it drive well it should be driven as much as possible. With that being said I notice every new scratch and dent and it kills me everytime, got caught out camping in a severe thunderstorm and hail with it the other day and picked up a few new dents on the hood which really hit deep.
  2. I've been driving the brat as a daily the past two weeks because my other car broke and I've been waiting on parts to fix it. So in the mean time I've made some upgrades to the rear of the brat this week....suspension and a bumper. I used EMPI 9571 coilovers meant for vw baja beetles with torsion bar front suspension as a helper spring for the torsion bars. The stroke is 5" and the extended and compressed lengths are almost exactly the same as stock. Bolted right in other than having to press out the sleeve the coilover bushings came with and very minimal cutting. I cut a little off the bump stop tab on the control arm and ground a little off the bump stop to get the spring to clear on full droop. I also made a rear bumper with a hitch and swingout spare tire carrier so i can keep my spare out of the way and use a hitch mount bike rack or other things. Empi 9571 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Bushing sleeve brat coilover by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Coil by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Coil clearance on gound by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr lil rear lift by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Bumper finsihed by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr hinge by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Swung by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr I've also done some camping and doing some shakedown testing to get a feel for what else it needs in the suspension and steering to drive a little nicer off road, Im thinking trying to get a little stiffer front spring or finding another solution to getting better front suspension and steering. Brat PR4 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Brat PR3 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr old grade back by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr old grade front by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr uphill brat old grade by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr downhill old grade by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr lakeside swing brat by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr lakeside bumper brat by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr
  3. Not long after my last post I ended up tearing meniscus pretty badly while rock climbing which lead to me having to get surgery and spend about 7 months in bed, having to do lots of rehab to walk correctly and gain mobility back in my knee. Unfortunately this also meant that I was unable to bend my knee enough to safely drive the brat as I'm 6'4" and barely fit in the thing to begin with. After about a year I finally got it back on the road, but not after some trouble with the fuel tank. So anyway on to the update of the car, I replaced the rocker arm which had broken a spring washer and started driving it a bit but had trouble with the car stalling out often and sometimes not starting at all. Turns out that after sitting the fuel tank had rusted again pretty badly and the sediment from the tank was clogging the in tank fuel lines. The fuel lines turned out to be badly rusted inside as well so I tried to take a industrial pipe cleaner to the inside which was a bad idea as the brush on the end of the metal line ended up breaking off in the line making the problem even worse. Unable to get the brush out of the line I was forced to make a new line in the tank. I did this using some 3/8" brake line I bent to reach near the lowest point of the tank, drilling a new hole in the tank on the drivers side of the tank, then feeding the brake line through an opening in the baffle. After a deep clean of the tank using vinegar and then degreaser with many flushes of water to make sure any gasoline fumes and varnish had been removed I brazed the new line to the tank. To hopefully stop future problems with the tank I sealed the tank using por-15 fuel tank sealer following their recommended procedure of prepping the tank with a degreaser and then their metal prep which is an acid based solvent to etch the metal and get rid of any of the remaining rust. new line by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr new line out of tank by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr new line in tank by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr On to other news while unable to drive the brat I was forced to get another vehicle big enough for me to fit in so I picked up this 1988 Toyota right before my surgery. I also started cutting up the donor brat I took the ea81 from to make a trailer out of it. Brat with CC2 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Brat with CC by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Brat trailer project by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr After getting the brat back on the road I decided it would only be right that now that it was no longer lowered I would flex it out to check the suspension travel. Here are the results right as it started to three wheel. Flex2 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Flex1 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Front Flex by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Rear Flex by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Now that it's back on the road I've found some new motivation for it and will probably be doing little projects on it here and there. Some things I'd like to do next are a rear bumper and some mods to try to squeeze some more lift and travel out of the suspension. I also decided to ditch the idea of fixing the topper as I'm not a huge fan of how it looks and it was just pretty messed up with a rotten core and missing windows, so I cut it up and am hoping to make a fiberglass tonneau cover using some of the pieces from the topper. As far as the second gen brat trailer goes I'm trying to make it a capable off road trailer I can pull behind the Toyota or maybe behind the brat for camping and doing utility work, so I'm going to be building a steel frame for it with new suspension, haven't decided if I'll go independent suspension like timbren or leaf springs and a straight axle yet. I've also got a build thread going on for my Toyota which I'm turning into a off road camper on expedition portal if anyone cares to check it out https://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/1988-toyota-custom-cab-build.207189/
  4. Wasn't able to get the brat going for the road trip because I found that I broke a spring washer on the rocker arm. But i did get the new rotor on and I got my rear drums turned, and the brakes feel better than ever. Took it out for some joy riding on some icy roads but immediately found out my alignment went wonky in the back because it was fishtailing and fighting itself bad in 4wd going straight over 25mph on the ice. Took it back to the garage and did a 2x4 toe plate adjustment and then used a drywall laser to double check everything. Now it's driving great, but I still have to replace the rocker arm assembly before I start dailying it again. Heres a random photo dump Header wrap by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr New Carpet Project by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Winter Drive by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Settled Suspension by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Probably going to be taking it out of storage, washing, doing some more wetsanding and buffing to get the paint really looking nice this season, and then start dailying it again soon.
  5. I thought the brat looked cool and handled decent when it was lowered but not that I'm planning to use the car for camping and hauling stuff I decided to lift it. I made a lift for the front and clocked the rear torsion bar to get some more ground clearance, got a period correct winch, fully sound deadened the interior. Winch by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Winch Mounted by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Raised by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Working on getting it ready for a 3k mile road trip in a month. Gotta install a new brake rotor, check my valve tolerances, and try to fix up this topper. topper damage by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr bent window by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr The topper has some extensive damage and a bent window frame. The roof is made of a foam sandwich core which has molded/deteriorated and beyond repair so I picked up some plascore honeycomb material and fiberglass to remake the roof and repair the cracks.
  6. I've been dailying the car for about 2 months now and have taken it on a number of road trips about 2700 miles and it's been awesome. The one issue is the rear spring rate is quite soft. Cuyuna 2 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Camping by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr End of the trail by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Cuyuna by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr
  7. Got my bumpers painted with some single stage enamel yesterday and installed them today. Also found some old-school cal customs "off-road" light at the thrift store. I tinted them yellow and threw those on as well, still need to wire them up but I think they're pretty sweet for $5 lights with metal buckets and glass lenses. IMG_5989 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr IMG_5988 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr IMG_5986 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Heres some other pictures I took this last week while driving it around. Sunset by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr 4wd test by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr
  8. Here's a quick video of it, will be getting more in the future for sure. Think I have a small exhaust leak still, need to retorque it now that the gaskets have been heat cycled. You might have to click on the video to go to flickr to view it. Revs by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr
  9. Chevy luv struts and reclocking the torsion bar in the rear (also have to cut off a bit of the bump stop) and 2nd gen 2wd struts in the front with 2nd gen springs and cutting about a half coil should get you there. You probably won't even have to cut springs with a 15" rim. I'm on chevy luv struts 14" pugs with 2nd gen 2wd struts and 2nd gen brat springs (didn't cut springs). Lake side by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Had 15x6 trailer rims on the back for a little while I was building it and needed to roll the fenders. Primed by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr
  10. Thanks guys! I couldn't be more stoked with how it's turning out. Got the rest of my interior in, put the tailgate on, and drove it to the gas station and for a little cruise. Only a few things left to button up before I can take it back from the cabin and start driving and enjoying it! Some beauty shots from tonight Lake back by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Lake side by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Lake front by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr
  11. Well it's an important update. The brat is almost completely back together! The interior is almost all back together with the parts that I have, however it's going to be a work in progress for a while. Got my door handles and locks back in but still have to put the tailgate, more of the trim, and the cowl and wipers back on. But most importantly I took it out for its first drive since 2012, and it was awesome. It rides great and shifts great, Im still breaking in the engine and clutch so I haven't really stepped on it too much yet but it's got some pep. I would've taken a video but by the time I got the brakes done tonight it was already dark out. Drivers interior by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Passenger interior by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Almost all together by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr
  12. Got the front and rear windows, lights, front and some of the interior back together. I also installed speedoo clutch and throttle cables, the radiator and fan and made a pitch stopper by sleeving the ea81 pitch stopper to extend it slightly using the stock mount location on the body and welding a bit onto a the original mount plate from the ea81. Waiting on a single brake line for it to hit the streets. Have had it running and have worked a bit on getting the carbs synced but need to take it for a drive to really feel it out, AFRs were looking good when I've been running it and it sounds healthy and peppy. Pitch Stopper by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr IMG_5876 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr image_50428417 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr
  13. Sprayed another coat of base yesterday and then the clear today. So happy with the color and how the paint turned out, having never painted a metallic base coat before I was a bit nervous. Now there's only a few things left to get sorted out and I'm eager to get it on the road! Fresh Paint by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Fresh Paint 2 by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr
  14. Got the rest of the exhaust fabbed up today, wasn't able to finish welding it fully. Exhaust is 1.75" unequal headers then 2 inch to the back with a resonator and a high flow muffler, all mandrel bends except the 45 right before the muffler. Midpipe by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Axleback by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr
  15. Got the basecoat layed this afternoon, color looks really dark in the shop but when it's in the sun or with good lighting it lightens up a lot. Body In color by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr Close up by Luke Hoffman, on Flickr
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