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super88 11-03-2003 10:21 AM

B & B vs. Factory Five
What do you guys think about B & B vs. Facory Five...I found both for about 34K on the CobraCountry site one in Thousand Oaks, CA and one in Mesa, AZ. Check it out if you have the time and give me your thoughts...Any questions I should ask that are not addressed on the discription...Thanks again, DA

ENTDOC 11-03-2003 11:21 AM

The B@B seems to be the best bang for the buck here,but I generally like the look of the FF cars better. chuck

jayscobras 11-03-2003 11:48 AM




RockSnake 11-03-2003 11:57 AM

My opinion:
It would depend a lot upon when each car was built.

Factory Five has improved a lot in the last couple years, but their early cars left me cold.

I visited the B&B factory, and generally feel their product is underappreciated. I came very close to buying there, but I wasn't through shopping.

As to pricing, 34K sounds way too high for a Factory Five...unless he has tons of upgrades.

CowtownCobra 11-03-2003 12:04 PM

I saw the B&B that Jay has for sale on Saturday. It really is a nice car worth checking into.

bentl11 11-03-2003 02:08 PM

B&B vs. Factory Five
I wondered about this also until I had a chance to see both cars and to visit the factories where they are built. I have seen FF5 cars built by NASA engineers (not a joke, it was the most over-engineered/over-built car I have ever seen!) as well as just regular folks and that is why I went with B&B. There is such a substantial difference in the way the body and frame is designed/built that you would never consider the FF5 if safety is an issue. Even when the B&B is compared to a Superformance, I still believe it's a better frame after having spent a lot of time under the Superformance cars. I'm not knocking Superformance as they are wonderful cars, but you can get as good as/better bodies and frames with B&B. (one similar weak point in FF5 and Superformance are the silly paper-thin floors) No matter how well the FF5 is built, the design is just weaker and the results of this are body squeaks, chassis flex, (I've experienced this even in a FF5 built to aerospace standards by a NASA engineer!). And in a wreck, well.... the thought of a wreck in any Cobra replica is scary, but I would not put a loved one in a FF5, I think it's just too fragile. Yeah, you read about people racing them, but then again people race in Hyundais too. I have seen B&B's that have been wrecked and it's amazing how strong the car is. (So strong, that even in a bad wreck, (as one I saw) the car can be put back to almost new condition) Compare this to FF5...can a bare shell be bounced length wise without breaking into? Is coremat (or equivalent) used to reinforce the body as this is critical to a quality non-metal body? (Superformance does this too) No use of wood to reinforce the body? (yes, believe it or not, some use wood 2X4's in the rocker panels to hide their body strength problems) Steel floors to strengthen the chassis? Steel reinforced doors? And there are many, many other differences not to mention resale. Thirty-four K for a FF5 is very probably double of what the car is really worth, no matter what accessories or engine it has (side-oiler excluded). For a nice B&B, that's probably a good deal. Take the time to look at a FF5 and a B&B, talk to the factories (Bryan, Barry and Karen at B&B are great!) I spent almost two years selecting a company by flying aroung, watching videos, reading assembly manuals, looking at cars and talking to owners before plunking down the cash. The FF5 was the easiest to eliminate and was the first one I excluded....the last, before choosing B&B, was Superformance. (Admitantly, when I began my search I was biased towards the Superformance, and I'm glad I didn't buy it) But's that's a story unto itself, sure to generate huge flames.
Don't get me wrong, B&B's aren't perfect (really stinko gauges and you NEED the optional larger brakes), but the inherent goodness is there and the people at B&B really want you to be happy and enjoy the cars. I could write a book on the subject of selecting a car and I would choose B&B again. Should you have any questions, don't hesistate to email me...Best Wishes!

Johnnyquest 11-03-2003 02:24 PM

I agree that it matters who builds the FFR car if it is worth the money or not. FFR is the number one assembled car out there that includes combining All the others together. The kit is cheap that's why so many are sold. I disagree with the notion of strength. Compared to the original the FFR is 40 years ahead, but we are not comparing apples to apples. 34k is a lot of money for a FFR but there are nice examples out there, check out ebay on any given day. I am biased because I own a Factory Five, and it is the biggest bang for the buck not the BB. I looked at a BB last month on a lift and was most impressed with fit and finish. But they are more money.

I disagree again :JEKYLHYDE with the notion that 34K is double what its worth. Checkout the FFR forum and find the builds are getting higher with more options and better running gear. If you want a primo Factory Five, get one that is a non-donor that way everything is brand new, 34K would not be a real high car going that route.

I never bash others, but I understand everyone has their own opinions. Get the car that fits your needs/wants and budget. Then have a ball, I do!

super88 11-03-2003 04:46 PM

Man you guys are great...keep it comin...Jay, I e-mailed you back...hope to hear from you. Seems to be a lot of Texans out there... ; )

ENTDOC 11-03-2003 05:19 PM

I would strongly disagree with the strength issue of a FF5 car.I think it is plenty strong,just built differently than most other fiberglass cars.A FF5 can easily reach 35 thousand in value;the components and build quaility dictate that.I just think that in this particular comparison of these two specific examples that the B&B is the better value.(but I do not think either is a particularly good value compared to other cars for sale out there now;many brands included. chuck

Menace 11-03-2003 05:23 PM

I Like B&B's and all replica's in general . BUT.....Bentl 11 what a load of kahkah ...sheesh

Johnnyquest 11-03-2003 06:25 PM

ENTDOC, you can disagree all night long, as I said your opinions are you own. First get the acronym of the company right: FFR=Factory Five Racing.

The FFR design is different because it is relied on the FRAME not the the fiberglass body except for aerodynamics and looks. Also, the cage is based on engineering and design calculations using LARGER walled material and stronger steel . The average joe might ASSUME that strength is lacking, but the average joe cannot base his assumptions on looks alone. I based what I know, on my engineering background I have ( not medical ) and the basis from the engineering dept. at FFR.

I would rather use fact anyday from assumption.

Menace, I bow at your intelligence! Lots of caca!!

tcolley1 11-03-2003 07:17 PM

I certainly will disagree with bentl 11 about FFR's safety and strength. These were two of my main considerations before I purchased my car.

I too looked at B & B, Superformance, ERA and Unique before making my final decision. I loved the FIA models by ERA and Unique and that was my original choice. Then I looked at their chassis set ups.

To me there was NO COMPARISON.

The FFR was the strongest and best designed chassis in my humble opinion. Especially the Spec Racer chassis.

I have built many performance and race cars over the years and found that the FFR Spec Racer chassis was one of the best built chassis available anywhere for the money.

It can be a multiple purpose car as it is perfectly streetable and is also recognized by several sanctioning bodies including NASA and the SCCA for racing.

This is a big deal as both and especially the SCCA have extremely exact specifications before it will approve any chassis for racing. To my knowledge there is not other Cobra chassis out there available straight from the factory that has been approved by the SCCA for racing. That to me speaks volumes about their safety and constructions methods.

This is why I bought my FFR Spec Racer that will be used on the street and raced (wheel to wheel) in selected events.

Just my .02 worth on the subject.

FFR #3646SP

SM Block Cobra 11-03-2003 07:45 PM

I think BENT is having a little fun with the group, if not listen to me BENT


CRZN427 11-03-2003 11:41 PM

My first Cobra replica was an LAE, sams as the B & B is now.

My current Cobra replica is an FFR.

I liked several things about the LAE, including the chassis strength and the tight body, let alone the GelCoat finish that allowed me to avoid an expensive paint job and still have a nice looking car, and all the stock Ford suspension and running gear.

I like the FFR for its engineered chassis. This is the only kit I know of that advertises that the chassis is designed with the modern concept of energy absorbing crumple zones.

I also like the round tube chassis and the aluminum panels for the cockpit and wheel wells. I like the non stressed body that can be easlily removed for major renovations to the car.

I like the support that FFR has provided with the choices of suspension and power train options.

I like the support that FFCobra provides for the builders. Other than this fourm, I don't know of any other place to get specific techinical information from knowlegeable, friendly and experienced builders at no cost.

I would not hesitate to build another B & B car. They are very good and mine was easy to assemble.

The FFR is not as easy, at least there is more to do, though it is not difficult to get any of it done, even working alone.

I believe that the earlier FR cars that were seen as "not up to par" were the result of not understanding the concept of the FFR company (they say in their CD that they are running on a very thin margin and do the work out of love of the car not a desire to make a lot of money, and guess what, lots of us see their point and they are now making a lot of money as well).

Additionally, as more FFR cars were built there was more shared information to help turn around the notion that the car was not up to the game. Haven't FFR cars been first in most of the national track events over the past couple years?

As all say in this matter, do your home work, go to car shows, visit the factories, talk to owners and form your opinions on what you want out of your car.

You may find that the FRR comes closer to your real desires than you once thought. If price is of any concern, the FFR is very attractive.

The final value of a car is dependent on what is put in it (time, material and workmanship) and how much you want a car that is built that way.

grumpy 11-04-2003 05:05 AM

Both cars don't really compare for the dollars as listed. If You have seen and driven both for your decision then I apologize. The FFR listed above the B&B by COBRA Engineering is a better buy for you FFR Dollars, but it doesn't compare to the B&B either. You compaing a donor vs a non donor, kinda tough looking at the pics, and the descriptions leaving a lot on the table. But, if you have 34k and gotta spend that amount on a Guardsman blue one the B&B will probably resale better.
My 1c worth.

ENTDOC 11-04-2003 05:54 AM

First of all Johnnyquest ,FFR is an acronym for Factory Five Racing not a synonym,and my name is ENTDOC not ENDOC ,second if you could read ,you would see that my reply was directed to Bent not you and that it was in support of the strength of the FFR frame.(you guys are way too sensitive) chuck

mrmustang 11-04-2003 06:00 AM

Please don't feed the trolls.

computerworks 11-04-2003 06:08 AM

This thread has a valid topic and was asking a sincere question.

The posts should remain factual and on-topic.

Comparing any brands lately seems to bring out owner's emotions...
...and that can crash a thread.

Let's not let that happen here, OK?

ClubCobra Moderator

Nuke427 11-04-2003 06:16 AM

Head on into a rock wall, that did not give one inch, at around 40 mph in an FFR and I only got stitches in my right leg and was sore for a couple weeks. I think the safety issue should be put to rest on the FFR.

ruizrey1 07-22-2021 12:20 PM

I did my research and was not concerned about price. I decided on a LAE its just a better built car. They are rare and I'm convinced that some of the comments are not informed or at the least the naysayers have never crawled around an LAE. Thick steel in places you cant easily see but it matters in a crash. That says it all to me.

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