1 (edited by rozap_ 2019-01-25 08:34 PM)

Topic: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

Noob team here, we just picked up this fine piece of Italian garbage and it's a long way from even running but we're thinking about the cage. It's a little interesting because of the size of the car. So I'm wondering if anyone has any pics, tips, or can put us in contact with one of the other teams who have run the x1/9. Specifically I'm interested in the backstay angle and position, as well as where the main hoop sits in order to achieve the 2" space.

Also, hi everyone, I'm Chris and am in the Seattle area. If anyone wants to grab a beer, I'd love to talk with local folks who have some Lemons experience.

Thanks for any advice!

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

Best advice I can give you is pick another car, for an awful lot of reasons.

Backstay issue and helmet head room issue can be solved by building an exo-cage. Run the front bars from the floor pan to a point above the top of the windshield with only one bend in them. Put the halo above the top of the windshield in the front and above the B column in the rear. Drill holes in the B column to drop the rear hoop down and make it so that the halo is wide enough to hang out over the top of the door line. Absolutely worst thing you can do is cut away that huge B column.

I wish you success. I haven't seen many Fiat x cars in Lemons, try looking up teams running an MR2. Same cage and handling issues.

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

Thanks, googling exocage is what I needed. I have seen it done but just didn't know the best search term for it. Yea, looks like the 914 and mr2 have the same problems.

Maybe in a different timeline we'd run a different car, but, here we are. Not the easiest path forward but hey, Lemons...

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

There was a team running an engine-swapped X1/9 several years ago in the Midwest.

https://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/ … a-splatos/

Command Pilot/Flight Director, Escape Velocity Racing
Index of Effluency, Heroic Fix, Class C Trophy, now hopelessly gunning for Class B.
Currently 1-2 vs. Team Fairlylame in the Class of 1964 Championships

5 (edited by rozap_ 2019-01-25 10:33 PM)

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

SpaceFrank wrote:

There was a team running an engine-swapped X1/9 several years ago in the Midwest.

https://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/ … a-splatos/

Thanks! that article is what I needed to find some pictures in Phil's Über Gallery http://www.murileemartin.com/UG/LMIS11/LMIS11.html

That article linked in TTAC with the build pics seems to be lost to the sands of time. Though I did find it on the wayback machine, it only has thumbnails sad

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

There has been a couple other x1/9s that have raced in Lemons as well. The few I've personally seen have all had cages that extended out of the body.

http://www.murileemartin.com/UG/LMIS12/115-LMIS12-UG.jpg
http://www.murileemartin.com/UG/LIL14/049-UG-IMG_8531.jpg

Fourteen time loser. You'd think I'd know better by now.

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

whatever you do, make it sound like this
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yTt4jhsq620


But don't emulate their early cage. No Longer Legal in Lemons
https://jalopnik.com/italian-stallions- … ns-5121314

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

Oh wow, no windshield either. Simpler times.

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

Spank wrote:

whatever you do, make it sound like this
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yTt4jhsq620


But don't emulate their early cage. No Longer Legal in Lemons
https://jalopnik.com/italian-stallions- … ns-5121314


I think this is their later iteration of that car.  It was rotary powered.  Dont recall seeing it for a few years now.

http://www.murileemartin.com/UG/LBW11/LBW11-UG-1356.jpg

1990 RX7 "Mazdarita" 
1994 Jaguar XJ12 (Winner C-Class 2013 Sears Pointless)
1964 Sunbeam Imp (IOE 2013 Sears Pointless)
1980 Rover SD1 (I Got Screwed 2014 Return of Lemonites) (Sold -> Houston.  Gone and forgotten)

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

We are a new team that plans to run an '81 X1/9.  We met with our cage builder this morning to verify the seat location and measure up our tallest (6'-6") and shortest (5'-8") drivers.  When we get the car back we can send pics.

Apex Vinyl in Alvin TX is doing our cage.

11 (edited by bg1963 2019-02-02 04:02 PM)

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

I'm the owner of the #919 X1/9 pictured above. That was at Autobahn with me in the car. The high back seat we chose was higher than the targa bar. So going over the targa bar with the cage was just easier especially since Lemons was requiring a rear window in a mid engine car at the time. So the easiest way was to just build the cage high enough to 45 the rear supports over the top. I have a many pictures of the original build including the cage. Contact me directly if you want me to send you some pictures. Also if you are looking for parts I can help you there as well. Just let me know.

If you plan on using the stock drive train your in for a lot of heartache. I have owned an X1/9 since I was 17 (I'm now 55) and figured racing an X1/9 in Lemons would be no problem. Many times we would make it through day one with no issues just to blow up on day 2. We did win IOE once, and were in contention to win class C a few times, but always walked a way a bit disappointed after one failure or another. A few times in the last 1-2 hours.

The best option for an X1/9 in Lemons in my opinion is some sort of an engine swap. Splatos ran an Alfa v6 with success. Although the builders of Splatos were Alfa gurus. You can google "Splatos" Lots of information on line regarding this car. I was able to help provide them with some parts after there unfortunate incident at Road America when Lemons ran there.

I have been meaning to sell the #919 car above, but just never got around to it yet.

Good Luck with your build.

Afunzalo Racing
#333 2001 Ford Escort ZX2
#919 1974 Fiat X1/9 (Autobahn July 2014 IOE)

12 (edited by rozap_ 2019-02-02 05:32 PM)

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

545days: thank you! I'd be very interested in pics when you get it done

bg1963: Thanks for the advice. We bought the car with a blown head gasket, and after tearing into it, are not super optimistic about getting away with just a top end rebuild.

I do have a vr6 and transmission sitting on the floor of my garage though.........but not sure how we can pull that off sub $500. Would be a terrible idea though.

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

bg1963 wrote:

I'm the owner of the #919 X1/9 pictured above.
[edited]
I have been meaning to sell the #919 car above, but just never got around to it yet.[edited]

Y'know, if I just had a desire to "race an X1/9 in Lemons", and if I _had_ an X1/9 [available for spare parts] which didn't yet have a cage, and I was just starting a build ...

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

If you put a VR6 in the back of an X1/9...don't worry about the letter of the $500 rule an focus on the "spirit" of what it is supposed to encourage.  This is a very foolish idea and those are encouraged if they do not compromise safety.

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

That might be the only way to make an x19 less reliable.  I can not in good conscience recommend a vrsux swap.

Owner/Captain of The 27 Club E46. Phoenix, AZ
and now the #95 Thunderbird

16 (edited by rozap_ 2019-02-04 09:50 PM)

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

Sexy jesus wrote:

That might be the only way to make an x19 less reliable.  I can not in good conscience recommend a vrsux swap.

I agree it would be a bad idea and would be less reliable than a stock setup. But I'm interested about what in particular makes the vr6 trash for an endurance race? Cooling problems and timing chains are an issue, but aside from that, the engine itself is just about the only thing I haven't had a problem with in 10 years of Corrado ownership (ok not a super high bar...). But racing is pretty different (and I have no experience outside of short sessions), so I'll take your word for it.

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

rozap_ wrote:
Sexy jesus wrote:

That might be the only way to make an x19 less reliable.  I can not in good conscience recommend a vrsux swap.

I agree it would be a bad idea and would be less reliable than a stock setup. But I'm interested about what in particular makes the vr6 trash for an endurance race? Cooling problems and timing chains are an issue, but aside from that, the engine itself is just about the only thing I haven't had a problem with in 10 years of Corrado ownership (ok not a super high bar...). But racing is pretty different (and I have no experience outside of short sessions), so I'll take your word for it.

Well we have a team here in the Midwest with a couple of class B wins with one.  I would consider it more reliable on the rack than a Honda B series engine in the hands of an average team.

18 (edited by zanzabar88 2019-02-06 10:37 AM)

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

Our Scorpion managed to keep the cage mostly inside (due to John Pagel's massive skills). I'm 6'2" and just barely fit.
http://www.lancisti.net/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=12632&d=1505895986
http://www.lancisti.net/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=12633&d=1505895998
http://www.lancisti.net/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=12631&d=1505895973
http://www.lancisti.net/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=12630&d=1505895959

Captain of McDads/AFART Racing - 1977 Lancia Scorpion. 1987 Lanciota Scorpupra Integrale Evoluzione Speciale VIII Truffare
Captain of 42 Hours of MeLons (2013-14) - Vattenmelon Vagn 1984 Volvo 240, B-Class Winner: Arse-Freeze 2014

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

zanzabar88 wrote:

Our Scorpion managed to keep the cage mostly inside (due to John Pagel's massive skills). I'm 6'2" and just barely fit.
http://www.lancisti.net/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=12632&d=1505895986
http://www.lancisti.net/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=12633&d=1505895998
http://www.lancisti.net/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=12631&d=1505895973
http://www.lancisti.net/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=12630&d=1505895959


Sell it to this X1/9 guy if you haven't sold it already...

  But, back to the point. This is how to build an X 1/9 cage.  The cars have similar structures.

Gosh, my business card says 'Tech Tyrant'

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

Evil Genius wrote:

Sell it to this X1/9 guy if you haven't sold it already...

Oh yeah, we ain't selling it no more. wink

Captain of McDads/AFART Racing - 1977 Lancia Scorpion. 1987 Lanciota Scorpupra Integrale Evoluzione Speciale VIII Truffare
Captain of 42 Hours of MeLons (2013-14) - Vattenmelon Vagn 1984 Volvo 240, B-Class Winner: Arse-Freeze 2014

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

rozap_ wrote:
Sexy jesus wrote:

That might be the only way to make an x19 less reliable.  I can not in good conscience recommend a vrsux swap.

I agree it would be a bad idea and would be less reliable than a stock setup. But I'm interested about what in particular makes the vr6 trash for an endurance race? Cooling problems and timing chains are an issue, but aside from that, the engine itself is just about the only thing I haven't had a problem with in 10 years of Corrado ownership (ok not a super high bar...). But racing is pretty different (and I have no experience outside of short sessions), so I'll take your word for it.


I have never raced one. But worked at the dealer and Indi german car shops.  I have seen 3 12 valve vr6 engines with melted pistons. and no compresson. these were stock cars. seems like its always 3 and 4. On no other stock engine have I ever seen this happen. my guess the middle cylinders EGT get to high but i don't really know.  it may just be as easy as keeping coolant and oil temps down.

if it was me I would use a 2.0 ABA with the later cable shift trans. that's an engine you cant kill.  engine bay room is vary limited but I guess once you cut out the rear trunk you might be ok?

Owner/Captain of The 27 Club E46. Phoenix, AZ
and now the #95 Thunderbird

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

Nothing wrong with the Fiat engine, other than being too small.  Built right, and driven like you're endurance racing, they last.  Look at Xweb for a good knowledgeable group.  Lots of sports car racing history in these engines.

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

I never did reply with pictures of our cage, and have none handy.  Check out the NOLA 2019 race wrap-up at 8:07 for a short chunk of video of the car.  Also, most of the driving footage where you can see fake pvc V8 intakes on the hood was shot from the car, so you can see the front of the cage from the interior.

Re: Anyone else running a Fiat x1/9? General cage advice

VR6 in x1/9!! Now that sounds like some fun!!