The year 2020 is finally behind us; we finally have a new year to start fresh with new races, new builds, and new opportunities. The Best in the Desert Parker 425 is just days away, and the Southern California shop, Jakes’ Fabworks, is bringing something very special to the race – their new Class 10 Buggy they just finished for their client Dan Reger, and we got to take the first look at it.
Jake’s Fabworks has been building and prepping race cars for years now, but they are most known for their bespoke level of craftsmanship in their open-wheel unlimited Baja Bug race cars that race in a class known as Class 5. But it isn’t only the drivers that have been making them so successful in their class; it is the engineering and fabrication Jake Johnson and his team have been putting into them. You can check out a whole build thread on their first renditions of their Class 5 cars here. A total of nine race cars have been built so far, but now they wanted to take it to the next step: a class 10 Buggy.
Jake and his team have taken that same design ethos from their other builds and have built an impressive Class 10 Buggy for their client Dan. This project has been ongoing over the past five years, being completely designed through computer-aided design (CAD) with an overall goal to make the car as strong and light as possible without compromising one of the other factors.
They indeed did succeed by this measure of keeping the car light and strong while maximizing performance. How light is it? We aren’t sure they wanted to keep that a secret from us. Jake’s Fabworks teamed up with ProAm to develop a custom forged positive offset wheel to optimize wheel travel and keep the track width narrow as possible. This offset wheel and a track width of 87″ allowed for 21 inches of wheel travel and a conservative 21 degrees of CV angle. To help soak up the rough terrain in the desert, it is equipped with King Shocks. 2.0″ coil-overs all around. 2.5″ bypass shocks in front and 3.5″ bypass shocks in the rear to propel the massive 37″ Tensor tires.
They have built the best car they possibly can – there was no shortcut taken throughout this project, so they sent a 2.4L EcoTech to get built by the legendary engine builder, Danzio Performance Engineering — putting down a respectable 180 horsepower while on E85 pump gas. To get the power to the ground, it is mated to a six-speed Fortin Transaxle built by Dave Folts.
Not stopping short of perfection, they partnered with the Carbon Fiber wizard himself Danny Ebberts of Ebbco to develop all the carbon work on the car, including the front panels and dash. The rest of the paneling and aluminum work was developed in house by the Jake’s Fabworks team. The subtle details from the Carbon to the logo placement throughout the car show the level of craftsmanship and passion that went into building the car.
Inside the car is a simple carbon full dash with a Motec ECU that displays all the important engine and vehicle vitals. Because the car would be going through rain and mud at certain times, they wanted one less thing to fail so the radios were mounted as high as possible above the co-driver.
Overall, Jake’s Fabworks has taken their proven building capabilities of their winning unlimited Baja Bugs and elevated it to a Class 10 Buggy Chassis. This shop is not afraid to push boundaries outside the norm to show what they are capable of. We can’t wait to see how well this car does this year in the upcoming 2021 season and what is next for them to build.
Chassis: Jake’s Fabworks Class 10
Engine: 2.4L GDI Danzio Ecotech Engine
Transmission: Six-Speed Fortin Transaxle by Dave Folts
Hubs: ProAm Hubs
Tires: 37″ Tensor DSR tires.
Wheels: Custom forged wheels by ProAm
Axles: 934 cv’s with 35 spline ProAm axles
Body Work: Jake’s Fabworks and Ebbco
Suspension: Jake’s Fabworks 22″ wheel travel front and rear
Shocks: King shocks. 2.0″ coil-overs all around. 2.5″ bypass front and 3.5″ bypass rear.
Wiring: Proformance Engineering.
Lights: Baja Designs
Communication: PCI Race Radios