Limited Slip Differential Group Buy

This page contains the information and status on the group buy I am organizing for 7.5" LSDs for Merkur XR4ti's and Scorpio's

Last status update: July 16, 2002

Quick Status: Bob is getting ready to ship what he has, there will be no second shipment.
Bob has a new number in case anyone needs to get ahold of him:
011-44-17858-11003, as dialed from the US.

Email sent 07/16/02:
Sorry guys, I've been in and out for the last couple weeks, lost my email access for a little while, and had 1000+ unread email messages. I just now read the LSD ones.
Here's the latest:
We're working on shipping what he has right now. This looks to be about 18 diffs or so. I don't think there will be anymore after this, so refunds will be going out to those who do not get one. I don't feel like waiting another year for another 18 diffs :)

Now, for the refunds, I'd like to hold off for now. Just in case this ends up costing more than initially thought, I need the money as a "buffer" of sorts. I don't expect it will cost more, and if it does, it won't be by much. As always, there are exceptions to the rule, so feel free to contact me off-line if needed.

Now, a couple of things:
1. I've been busy collecting the necessary paperwork to get married (in Germany, hence all the paperwork needed) Hopefully I'll have this wrapped up by the end of the week, so I'll have much more time available
2. Because of number 1, I'll be out of the country for most of September (I wonder how many Euro headlights I can fit in my luggage :)
3. If you email me, try not to include any extra subject headers ( [M], [xr4-hardcore], etc, etc) and it will go straight to my in-box. Otherwise, it goes in with the rest, and it takes me a while to get to it.

Email sent 05/16/02:
I got ahold of Bob, and he said he's trying to get a few more units to fill up a crate. He suggested setting a cut-off date. I think I'll do just that.
How does this sound:
I'll set a cut-off date (either May 31st or June 7th) and tell him to ship everything he has by that date. If I don't have the diffs in my hands by the end of June, I'm calling the whole thing off.
As for the swaybars, I don't even have any diffs, so I have no idea if/when/how many swaybars I'll be getting.

Out of curiosity, how many would be interested in an alternative: 7" diffs through someone else (versus the 7.5" diffs through Bob). If there's enough interest, I'll look into it. These are the ones that are a straight bolt in with some washers as spacers, there are a couple guys running these right now.

Email sent 01/09/02:
I just got off the phone with Bob. He says he has 27 units, he's gone through 18 so far, and they are all good. He's got 9 more to go through. He told me he could send the 18, I told him to wait, and to send as many as possible. He's not sure if he can get all 27 in the crate, but he'll try (i.e., no guarantee)

As for the swaybars, we are looking at about $90 a set plus shipping, which looks to be a good price. I'll have a set price and a size verification (he was on the road when I called) in the next update.

Look for another update in about 2 weeks.

Email sent 12/04/01:
Here's the good news:
Bob said he's got about 22 diffs and about 12 sets of swaybars (and a Speedo for Steve) We are looking at a ship date sometime in January
Even better news:
He's going through every unit, checking them out, replacing seals, etc., etc. This is one of the reasons it's taking a little longer, the other being that they just moved their shop.
Some bad news:
It may cost a little more than originally thought. We are looking at about 600 pounds extra, just for packaging. That's about $850 (about $40 per diff) I don't plan on asking for any more money just yet. We'll see what the total comes to first, as we'll have a more accurate shipping cost when the crate is built and weighed.
As for the swaybars, he says he has about 12 sets, but I didn't ask about price. Who would be interested? And what is the max price you're willing to pay (to your door)

I'll send out another update when I have any more info.

Quick Links:
Paid People

These are 7.5" units, 3.64:1 ratio, straight bolt in to Merkur XR4Ti's and Scorpio's. I even asked if it takes a special fluid, he said it doesn't.

The cost of the diff, shipped to your door, is $275.
Here is the price breakdown:
The price of the diff: $150.00
The price of shipping within the US: $40.00
My time and any added expenses: $10.00
Price of shipping from the UK: $45-$75
Michigan people, or anybody who wants to pick it up from Michigan, can subtract $40 for the shipping.

If there is a diff shortage, and Bob cannot fill the full order, diffs will go to those who paid first or who have sent me a substantial bribe :)

Payment options:
I am not taking any more orders

Names of people who have paid
order # Name # of units Notes
1 John Baas 1
2 Steve Radosevich 1
3 Mark Durso 1
4 Phillip Calvin 1
5 Dan Stokes 1
6 Davis Stewart 1
7 Chris Kisner 1
8 Boris Besedin 1
9 Bill Williams 1
10 Tim Salefski 1
11 Vic Harvey 1
12 Ric Gillis 1
13 Brian Boyer 4
14 Lih-Yen Hsieh 1
15 Zachary Kauffman 1
16 Lawrence Hallenbeck 1
17 Mike Holtz 1
18 Sean O'Connor 1
Total 21

Q: Can I still get in on the group buy?
A: Sorry, no, I have reached my quota. If there is more room, I'll open it up again

Q: How long will it take to get the diff?
A: We are looking to get them late February, early March 2002
The second shipment will hopefully be about 2 months after this date

Q: Is this just the LSD?
A: It is the case, LSD, and axle stubs.

Q: Does anything special have to be done to install it?
A: No, it's a direct bolt in. Remove the old case, install the new one.

Q: Does it take the same seals as the stock units?
A: The case is the identical. You can use the stock replacement parts for it.

Q: Does it take a special fluid?
A: No.

Q: What type of LSD is it?
A: Mohamed was nice enough to provide this info:
It is a viscous type. In a nutshell, it has a gel-like fluid inside the diff. When then diff heats up from speed, it creates positive traction on the axle (very vague definition).
Therefore, unlike clutch-type diffs (like Ford's Traction Lox or Chevy's Posi, etc.), there is always drive on BOTH wheels, even if it's a slight percentage. Whereas, the clutch (Traction Lox or Posi) or cone (Auburn) types only engage when it senses slipping. It's either 100% (50:50) or off (100:0).
Also clutch-LSDs wear out over time, since the clutch material dissolves whereas viscous does not have this inherit issue nor need refilling. NOTE: The LSD doesn't refill, but the diff will need fluid. The diffs that are being ordered will probably have their fluids intact.
Driving a Merkur with LSD is apparently different than driving one without, and you'll feel an immediate difference using your posterior meter!
For more info or a better explanation on Furgueson's viscous technology, use internet searches.

June 9, 2001
Mohamed informs the group via a couple emails:
Email 1
The Holy Grail of Sierra LSDs: the 7.5 LSD Scorpio Unit
Yes, this is a direct bolt in and yes, I can find a few! Which car has it? I'll tell you: The Scorpio 24V (aka Scorpio Cosworth) is the only car that is guarenteed to come with these.

Email 2
I found the source!
He has one out of the car already and several he'll have off in a week's time:
They're $150 each!! and he'll send them to the US by ship so it'll cost MUCH LESS to ship:
Call NOW!!! These babies are rare and GO VERY QUICK!!
His name is Bob, and the number as dialled is 011-44-797-908-1465.

Email 3
I have got GREAT NEWS!! He can get a hold of several of these diffs through his sources. Therefore Bob is YOUR SOURCE of the elusive 7.5 LSD rear diff that'll fit unmodified in your XR4Ti/Scorpio! (he has three left in stock as I have been told moments ago from him)
He also mentioned to me that he will be able to get Scorpio enthusiasts ANYTHING you need. This includes the blackout rear tailight and panels for your Scorp and including different wheel styles.
He's the parts guy for the Granada Enthusiasts Website.

June 10, 2001
Mohamed entices the group:
Now that I have a LSD rear, I noticed in the rain, once boost kicks in it is as unpredictable as say, a Mustang 5.0 in the wet. It WILL fishtail if you try to overpass someone quickly. Having driven RWD for nearly 10 years, I sensed the rear giving way while twisting the steering wheel quickly trying to control the boost..I had to let off the gas. With the old non-LSD rear, passing under boost was as safe as a Band-aid.
And this is with a stock XR4Ti!!

June 11, 2001
A couple people call and find that shipping one of these differentials costs anywhere between $200 and $500.
A couple of people suggest starting a group buy

June 12, 2001
I volunteer to start a group buy, not knowing what I'm getting myself into :)

June 13, 2001
Less than 24 hours later, I have 20 people wanting a LSD.
I call Bob to get a shipping quote on 20 diffs. He says to call back tomorrow.

June 14, 2001
I get another 10 orders overnight. I call Bob and let him know. He gives me the shipping details.
I post to the group letting them know the details, and request the money.
The money starts pouring in

June 21, 2001
I paid Bob for 22 LSD units, and 2 sets of swaybars. Bob said it will take about a month to get them all (he has 3 right now). He can fit about 20 units into one crate. Once one crate is filled, he will ship it.
I am still accepting orders. I think I will do so until I get close to 40 orders. I will then determine if there is enough interest to get another shipment.

Email sent 7/11/01:
Well, it's been a while, so I figure I'd give Bob a call and see how things are going. Slow he says. He's got a few of them now. He says he's behind on most of his orders. Don't think it will effect us that much, since I figured it would take a while anyways.
I sent him an email asking about the Swaybars and a couple of other things. He got it, but since he is computer illiterate, he needs someone to help him with the email program, he said he was going to try to get back to me later this week with the details.
If you sent me an email with a question and I haven't answered yet, then please resend it. I've been pretty busy, and have been keeping up, but messages have a tendency to slip through when you get 100+ messages a day :)
If you're still thinking about getting a diff, let me know. If you're definately planning on getting one, and haven't sent the money yet, then PLEASE let me know. We are at 39 diffs now. He said he can get approximately 20 to a shipment, so I don't know if there will be a third shipment. If there will be, I'll probably postpone it a little, to make sure it gets as filled as possible.
So if there is a 3rd shipment, and you need an extra month or two to scrape the money up, then let me know.
If you've sent me the money for the diff, and I haven't put your name on the paid list, let me know.

Email sent 7/31/01:
I just talked with Bob. Like I said in my last update, they are running behind, currently he has 14 diffs, and should have enough to fill the first shipment in a week or two.
He said he can get the Cossie swaybars, but the prices will vary. I'm guessing he will be buying them from others, and just shipping them for us. He is going to verify the sizes for me. I'm GUESSING that they will be less than $150 for a pair + shipping. BAT lists front (28mm) and rear (16mm) for $185.00 and $79.95, respectively. When I have an idea on how many sets I need, I'll try to get pricing. If each set is a different price, I will average it out. I don't know if these will include the bushings/clamps.
If you are interested in getting a set, let me know. Also let me know what the max you are willing to pay to get them.
Bob thinks he can get about 22 diffs into a crate max. I don't know if the swaybars will throw that number off or not. I would place a higher priority on getting the diffs over first.

Email sent 10/02/01:
Well folks, it's time for an update. I've been trying to get ahold of Bob for the last couple weeks, with no luck, it just rang. Today I got ahold of someone. I didn't want to send out an update saying "there is no update" which is why it's been so long (plus I've been busy)
Apparently, Bob has been out sick with laryngitis for the last 2-3 weeks, and is expected to be back in a week or so.
I guess it's kind of hard to answer a phone (or do business) when you can't talk :)
Since Bob is the one in charge of getting the diffs, there hasn't been any progress lately. The guy I talked to said they had 19 or so right now. So they should be real close to shipping it (I'm half tempted to just say ship what you got, but we've waited this long...) So I'll say 1st shipment should be end of October/early November, and the second shipment early next year.
If you have any questions/comments/concerns please email me, and I'll try to get back to you as soon as I can. If you've sent me an email, and I haven't answered, I apologize, please email me again.

Thanks for being patient

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If you have any questions, you can contact me: John Baas

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