Brotus7
Brotus7 Dork
11/13/22 5:14 p.m.

Wow. This could be really cool! Looks like it may be mid-rebuild? Bad time for me to consider it, but dreaming is free!

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/829732828360784/

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
11/14/22 11:59 a.m.

Very cool, but rhd and basket case mean that this seems very overpriced to me.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
11/14/22 12:08 p.m.

I don't know about "very". Birkins have a little more value than a random Seven. Not as much as a Caterham, but certainly more than most home-builts. That's a $20k car when put together. If it's complete, look at it as a pretty decent value for a kit. Heck, you'd probably want to tear it down anyhow just to be sure.

RHD is irrelevant in these cars :)

I don't think it's being rebuilt. I think that could be an unfinished build.

APEowner
APEowner UltraDork
11/14/22 12:14 p.m.

That looks like an unfinished build to me.  If all the parts are there then the price seems in line.  If you  all that comes with it is what's in the pictures it may be a bit high.

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
11/14/22 12:22 p.m.

Interesting. I had no idea they were worth $20k, I thought they were worth more like 10k lol. But a few sales on BAT seem to back up your assertion. (Though I know little and that's a quick glance).

I agree it looks never finished rather than torn apart for rebuild.

nocones
nocones PowerDork
11/14/22 12:37 p.m.

That doesn't seem out of line.  Assuming nearly everything is there to finish it including the MSO or it's already been Titled.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
11/14/22 9:14 p.m.

In reply to nocones :

Unlikely that it's been titled unless it was finished at one time. But an MSO is very important. I wonder if you could get Birkin to reissue it if it's been lost?

MyMiatas
MyMiatas Reader
11/14/22 11:27 p.m.

Man!! That car looks new out of the box to me. $9000 seams like a decent price. I am surprised that it hasn't been snatched up by one of you guys yet!!  Hmmm... A 1.8 turbo Miata drive train and switch it to left hand drive......

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
11/15/22 12:24 a.m.

Cars like this are more fun with a high compression naturally aspirated engine than a turbo. Drop a Duratec in there and hit the UK up for a bunch of tuning parts. 

GIRTHQUAKE
GIRTHQUAKE SuperDork
11/15/22 7:16 a.m.
Keith Tanner said:

Cars like this are more fun with a high compression naturally aspirated engine than a turbo. Drop a Duratec in there and hit the UK up for a bunch of tuning parts. 

Really? Any particular reason why?

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
11/15/22 8:57 a.m.

Response. Cars like this are all about the immediacy, about being a scalpel instead of a sledgehammer. You want an engine with wickedly fast throttle response and as little inertia as possible. The softer power delivery of a turbo takes away from that. 

I built one a few years back with a high compression 1.6 Miata motor. My boss had a Westfield with a turbo Miata 1.8. His had more power - of course - but it wasn't as much fun to drive in my opinion. The engine just didn't keep up with the reflexes of the rest of the car.

MyMiatas
MyMiatas Reader
11/15/22 9:58 p.m.

Was it the turbo lag that took the fun out of the drive? 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
11/16/22 9:09 a.m.

Yes. And it was a small turbo.

fatallightning
fatallightning HalfDork
11/17/22 12:52 p.m.

In reply to Robbie (Forum Supporter) :

I had one that was built in the early 2000s. Narrow S3 body with a live axle, ITB'd Zetec. They're generally thought of as being as a nicer kit then a Westy, closer to Caterham. Obviously, a lot depends on the person who built it. I enjoyed mine while I had it, it was just too extreme. That's probably a reasonable number.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
11/17/22 1:00 p.m.

Having seen Birkins, Cats, Westfields and homebuilts - I agree they sit between Caterhams and Westfields in terms of quality.

People may not realize that Caterham sued Westfield for trademark infringement back in the day, so Westfield had to change their car enough to satisfy the lawyers. They also went after Birkin in South Africa and lost - at the surpreme court level if I read this right.

http://www.saflii.org/za/cases/ZASCA/1998/44.html

Note that the listing is now marked as Sold. Someone's got a new project ;)

fatallightning
fatallightning HalfDork
11/17/22 2:16 p.m.

Most of the issues I had with mine were with the front fender mounts breaking and cracking the header. Both were modified from the original design though. They Z'd the fender stays to clear 225 front for some odd reason, and the builder choser to go with the hood exit for the header instead of inside the rails like normal. Big amount of mass hanging just from the flange with the only other bracket being a small one mid muffler. Also had a GNARLY vibe at 4-5k RPM. Sounded awesome WOT with the ITBs though.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
11/17/22 6:06 p.m.

Cycle fender mounts break, that's what they do. They always have :)

Thats a good looking car. 

Brotus7
Brotus7 Dork
11/17/22 6:43 p.m.

In reply to fatallightning :

That's a super unique paint job, especially on a 7. 

I'm glad this sold and bummed that it isn't mine. I also didn't know that Birkins to to be a better value. 

Keith, in terms of build quality - where are the differences between a Birkin and a Westfield? I know a lot depends on who puts it together.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
11/17/22 7:15 p.m.

The most obvious answer is the use of round tubes in some areas instead of purely square. It's just a more elegant design and the fabrication looks nicer. The Westfield just comes across as clunkier - rumor says the Locost was  based on a Westfield chassis and they do have some similarities. There's also more exposed aluminum instead of fiberglass, which looks better. Some of the latter is due to Caterham's litigation of Westfield, but all that fiberglass just makes it look a little more clumsy. The Birkin interior tends to be lined and padded a bit, the Westfield is just carpet. I've built a Westfield and had a chance to crawl all over a Birkin, and the latter just comes across as more of a little jewel as opposed to a kit car.

Here's a shot of the front suspension, for example. Westfield:

Birkin from the ad. Fundamentally much the same, but nicer in design and details.

Heck, let's take a step back and look at the nose overall.

 

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