We are extremely excited to be building a Bugeye Sprite for Caitlyn Jenner, who purchased this Bugeye pictured above. As with so many of our customers, Caitlyn’s Bugeye memories run deep. Bruce lusted after dad’d Bugeye as a teen, but dad sold the car before Bruce’s 16th birthday. Now, Caitlyn is having us build a “Dad tribute Bugeye,” complete with a number of performance upgrades, and some nice Dad script on the back.
We’ll keep you posted as we transform this car durning the coming weeks!
Remember my slick Bugeye Gumby with the glistening green paint? Here it is, with the paint roughed up down the middle, as Russ the painter gets ready to apply the silver stripes. In order to get a great job, he has to scuff up the green, mask it off, paint the silver stripes over the green, re clear coat it, and then buff all the color back up again.
Along the way, I got to agonize over how wide the stripes should be, and how many pin stripes. We looked at lots of racing stripes, but I kept coming back to Shelby (the blue Bugeye shown), which struck me as the perfectly striped Bugeye. Thus, we have copied that configuration, and now, the tape is laid and the silver stripes will go on this weekend. Russ also had to fit the grill and hood emblem to make sure they will center on the stripes. In this photo, the tape masks the green, so what is blue or yellow will be green, and everything else will be silver. Gumby is already looking better than ever!
Leslie C. of Durham, NC just completed something major today… she purchased this stunning custom Bugeye pictured second below, thereby circling back to this picture of her younger self and her dad in the early 60s, in his 58 or 59 dark Green Bugeye Sprite. While Leslie wanted us to find her a matching green car, this newly restored gray one was too nice to pass up, and we all trust that dad, who passed away in 2007, would be just as proud regardless.
While visiting Hudson, NY this past weekend, lo and behold along drove a Bugeye, so I stepped into Warren Street to flag it down. Turns out the Engels were out for an evening drive. They had been to our shop for parts on a prior visit– what a delight to encounter customers on a chance meeting three hours from home.
I asked if all was working on this car, so that I could offer some drive-by diagnostics. The fuel gauge was Walter’s number one complaint. With a turn of the key, I could see the gauge was powering up from pegged to exactly empty. We removed the cap and shook the tank, fuel was clearly present. So I bet Walter that his fuel sender had a plastic float which had been attacked by ethanol, filled up and sank. Thus the gauge reads empty because his float has turned into a sinker.
I wish suppliers world-over would stop supplying these plastic floats, as we keep running into this problem. They are useless, and will sink within their first year in ethanol. We have a brass float solution which is impervious to ethanol. Unless you want
to change your sender twice, please make sure to get one of these brass floats, no one wants to drain and remove their fuel tank a second time because of inferior parts. Click here to jump over to our catalog and order a new fuel gauge sender upgraded with a brass float.
You’ll also want to make sure to use the Viton gasket set and not cork, or your tank will leak out of the top each time you fill it. We sell complete pressure tested tanks with metal floats and Viton gaskets already installed if you would prefer a complete assembly ready to install. Click here to order a new fuel tank kit (with sender included).
Tonneaus are essential Bugeye gear. I use mine all the time, and find that people will not unzip and peer-in when my Sprite is parked. Thus this simple piece of vinyl offers some degree of security. It’s an illusion and I wouldn’t leave cash on the seat, but like an open front door to your house with the screen door closed, some people won’t try it, while an open doorway is free game. Tonneaus have the added benefit of keeping rain, sun and dirt out. They are quick to unfurl. And you can drive with them sealing the passenger cockpit to keep in some heat during the shoulder seasons. Every Bugeye should have one.
Here’s our black everflex tonneau fit to Bix’s Bugeye, freshly installed and customized with velcro tabs to accommodate his roll bar. This is a superior product to what you would normally find offered for sale for Bugeyes, because it is made out of a slightly more stretchy material that makes it much easier to snap closed or remove, especially when the temperature is cool.
Tonneaus are sold with no fasteners installed in the vinyl so they need to be stretched and fit to your particular car. Roll bars are all different, and any good auto interior shop can help you to customize the tonneau should you have a roll bar in your car.
This is a long tonneau, which means it fastens over the rear hooks on the back deck as shown. Short tonneaus are also available–they fasten to a row of fittings along the back edge of the cockpit. Many colors are available as you see in the photos. You can use the drop down menu to select the color you like.
Here’s a short drive in the Bugeye we have for sale called Colin. The exhaust note is exceptional, as you can hear. The car is tight with no issues!
You’ll see me use our ramps in this video—don’t be alarmed by the clunks that you might hear—it’s merely the rubber tire dropping into the metal ramp. One nice feature of high profile tires is that no rim damage results…
Summer rain cut my drive short, but Colin is ready for a cross country trip tomorrow! Fly in and drive this car home!
Check out the pictures and write-up about Colin in the very next post…