Velociraptor Sand Rails
October, 2004

Our "school" project for the fall is building two sand-rail dune buggies from scratch.

The Velociraptor is a mini sand rail design from a company called Badland Buggy out of Edmonton, Alberta. After a lot of searching for a good design, we found them on-line at

Originally, we were going to build a buggy with four-wheel independent suspension, but Max insisted on buying a Suzuki 1300cc Hayabusa sport bike engine (180hp) off of E-Bay.


With that much power I told him he'd have to develop his skills by building a simpler unit first.  People tell us the Hayabusa engine will push a two seat sand-rail across the dunes at speeds over 140 mph.   Max say's it will have good resale value.
We are learning a lot as we go.  I, (Ed), am new at metal fabrication.  We bought the pipe bender shown in this photo.  However, after buying it, the boys learned on the web that it wouldn't work for our application.

With two modifications, seen in the next two pictures, it worked just fine. 

We made marks on the die 1/4 inch apart and then slightly bent the pipe every 1/4 inch.  We also made a filler for the die out of a piece of barrel left over from Max's rib smoker.  The die filler is needed to make our outer diameter dies fit the schedule 40 pipe being used which is measured by inner diameter.

marks on die and filler

Wheels to help the end slide as it bends
It took us about three hours to bend each unit.
Here, Max is starting to fasten the cross supports
Max welding the two sides together.

Mitch grinding in the background.

Here's Mitch's completed adjustable seat tracks and seat mounting frame.

A larger view of the shop
Max is seen here updating his spreadsheet of all the parts, suppliers, prices, and order status. 

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