Replaced the carburetor gasket on Mabel because I looked as if it was leaking gas around the base. During the process, I found an issue with the distributor that I’m trying to get resolved. Unfortunately, it will require a replacement distributor. I’d like to keep it original and stay with the 009 distributor, but if I have to go with an aftermarket one to get her back on the road, I will. 🙁
I see articles on forums written up all the time about this little device and the issues it may cause. I’ve never had trouble with one (except for the other day), so I thought I’d write up the symptoms that I experienced with a failing Idle Shut-Off Valve in hope that others may know what to look for if it happens to them. So this past Sunday, I decided to get Mabel out for a drive. It was a nice, warm fall day about 80 degrees outside. I drove her a couple of miles to a gas station, got a few dollars worth of gas, then headed down the road. About a mile away from the gas station, I had to stop at a red light. When I did, the motor died. It fired back up, but would not idle. I had to keep pumping the gas pedal to keep it running. I carried on to my destination, about another 3 miles away to visit my mother. After the visit, the engine was almost completely cool and fired right up but still wouldn’t idle. So I had to do the whole drive with one foot on the brake and gas all the way home. By the time I got home, the engine was good and hot, I opened the deck lid only to hear a percolating sound from the carb and the base of the carb was very, very cold to the touch. Almost freezing cold. Based on articles I’d read in the past, my first thought was the idle shut-off valve. Since it was so easy to get too, I removed it from the carb to test it with 12 volts. It appeared to work as it should when power was supplied. I checked the connectors from the valve to the coil just to make sure they weren’t corroded, the looked fine, but I cleaned the terminals anyhow. Put everything back together, fired right up and idled perfectly. I let it sit for a couple of hours, then took it for a test drive around town, again, no problem, she idled perfectly every time I stopped. So, the conclusion is that I either have a failing shut-off valve or I had a bad electrical connection. For now, she continues to run great and idle great. The shut-off valve is a pretty cheap item, 15 to 20 dollars. I may order a spare to have on hand in case this one decides to fail again. I’m leaning towards a bad electrical connection though.
Some before, during and after of a little paint project I did on my wifes motorcycle. Same process applies to any touch up you may want to do on your Beetle’s interior parts. I’m no expert, but I’ve done it enough to know that it works and lasts. Total cost of this project was 18 dollars, total time spent (even when the paint was drying), 3.5 hours. Parts needed for this project: Glazing/Spot putty, putty spreader, automotive paint, clear coat, 600 grit sand paper, 2000 grit sand paper, polishing compound and a buffer (orbital or drill). First things first! If you can remove the part that you want to restore, that’s a plus. I started removing the scratched part and scuffed it with 600 grit sand paper. Next was to fill in the imperfections and scratches with spot putty. I applied the spot putty twice, making sure that it was hardened before sanding. I then sanded the whole part again with 600 grit sand paper, first dry, then wet sanded. Now it’s ready for paint. Before the paint, make sure your part is totally dry and CLEAN! Before I painted, I sprayed the part with Dupli-color paint prep that I had left from the Camaro splitter project. I gave the part 3 coats of paint, letting it dry and wet sanding with 2000 grit sand paper in between the 2nd and 3rd coat and after the 3rd coat. Once I was satisfied with coverage, I gave it 3 coats of cleat coat, again, letting it dry thoroughly in between coats. After the 3rd coat of clear coat was dry, I wet sanded the part with 2000 grit sand paper. (little tip: when painting and clear coating, it was hot outside (89 degrees), I held the spray can about 8 inches away from the part, using side to side motion and spraying past the edge each time) After wet sanding with 2000 grit sand paper to a smooth finish, I spent about 15 minutes buffing with polishing compound and a orbital buffer. Last step was a nice coat of wax. Not too bad for 18 dollars and a few hours work.
Installed the skid plate this afternoon that I ordered from vdubparts.com. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I’m very pleased with the quality and fit of the plate. Had it installed in just a few minutes. Just an extra layer of protection against road rash. If you’re looking for a good, quality, piece that’s priced right, check out vdubparts.com.
Thanks to Lenora, Shauna and Colby for picking up some new VW die cast to add to the collection. Colby found a really cool M2 1956 VW Beetle Deluxe model kit complete with wheel options and lift. Lenora found 2 Walmart exclusive M2 VW’s. A 1959 VW Microbus Deluxe and a 1953 VW Beetle Deluxe. Both with really neat paint schemes. Shauna picked up a Hot Wheels “The Beatles Yellow Submarine” Kool Kombi and a Artistic License Series VW Bug. Both are really cool, love The Beatles Kombi!
Got the skid plate in the mail today that I ordered from vdubparts.com. Very fast shipping, quality of the part is excellent. It came in raw steel just as advertised, so I cleaned it and gave it a fresh coat of paint just for rust prevention. I’m sure I’ll wear the paint off the bottom soon enough. I hope to get it installed this week, more pics to follow.
Lenora Boyd and Shauna Kristine Boyd got me some awesome Fathers Day gifts….a lot of them are for our ’68 Beetle Mabel…Lenora got an awesome vintage cooler and authentic luggage straps!!! Thanks to Darin Allen and Nicole Wuerffel Allen for helping her pick a great cooler! And the straps came from Foreign Concepts VW in California…great quality and great fit….Shauna knows all of my vices….sunflower seeds and pop art…an awesome Hot Wheels Beatles VW van and Hula Girl for Mabel…..couldn’t be happier.