Tag Archives: vw. beetle

Last Order For Door/Window Refresh

I placed the last order for everything I should need to start on the window and door rebuild kit. All new rubber, scrapers, handles, crank, etc. I’ve watched a ton of howto videos and I’m confident it’s not going to be has hard as I initially thought. I believe the new release latches for the vent windows is going to be the hardest part. Today I ordered new window crank handles, the plastic buffers and the tension springs. I also ordered a snap, grommet and rivet tool kit that includes tubular rivets for the vent window swivel point. Most people use a regular pop rivet, but I don’t think it looks as finished or nice. So, once this order arrives and we start having some consistent warm days, the project will begin. I plan on creating my own howto for this project with lots of pictures and video. Stay tuned!

New Window and Door Kit

Window & Door KitWindow & Door KitMy awesome wife surprised me with new German window and door kits for Mabel. All other rubber and seals on the car have already been replaced, the last piece of the puzzle was new seals and window treatment for the doors. I’ve been putting it off for some time because the German kits are expensive and replacing them is not an easy project and time consuming. Great kit from JBugs, complete with instructional video on dvd. Probably won’t start on this project until spring and it’s probably going to be a whole weekend kind of project, but can’t wait to freshen up Mabels doors!

Ready For Christmas and Maybe a Change

15350698_10210822653337431_7850022642222570218_nGetting some decorations up for Christmas, took Mabel out for a drive around town. Something I’m considering is putting her back to stock. She’s 100% stock other than the narrowed front beam and gas burner rims. Inside, nothing has changed since 1967. So, here’s my question. The front beam is new, 3 inch narrow beam built by Rusty Bottom Garage with new tierods and German ball joints with CB drop disc spindles. What I’m considering doing is putting the stock front beam back on (1968). How much of a pain in the ass is this going to be?

Mabel Doing Better, But Not 100%

Clean CarbCarb ApartCarb JetsCarbon!Here are the preliminary results….drum roll…I took the carb off and pulled it apart…very clean looking, but I removed all the jets and cleaned them with carb cleaner, blew them all with 60 psi….all openings in the carb were cleaned with carb cleaner and blown out as well…float floated, so no issue there…As I mentioned before, I’m not a carb guy and while we can never be 100% sure, I’m 99.9% sure that this carb is clean…installed the carb, threw in a little starting fluid to get her going and of course, she fired right up…idled fine for about 40 seconds then began to spit and sputter, but not nearly as bad as before…she didn’t die…I began to adjust the volume control by first turning it all of the way in, then backing it out 4 turns, the bypass screw all the way in, the back out 2.5 turns. Idle was still rough, so I backed the bypass screw out 4 more turns and the volume control out 2 more turns….idle was better and she didn’t die…I let it run for about 15 minutes at idle, giving it some gas every few minutes….engine was good and hot…so, better than before, but here’s what I discovered…intake was still ice cold…heat riser on 3 and 4 cylinder was a little warm, but far from hot….heat riser on the 1 and 2 cylinder was very warm, but not extremely hot….main body of the intake was cold….so, that’s where I’m at…it idles (not ideally, but it idles)…so, what I’m thinking is that my vintage Abath exhaust may need replacing (possibly)….exhaust is still very, very rich smiling, I reek of carbon monoxide…lol garage is full of it and I have to open the door to breath….You can see in the pic above the exhaust residue on my leg, still very rich. I’m still confident that it’s running too rich, how to adjust that, I don’t know….I’m also confident that fuel has made its way into the case…I changed the oil about 200 miles ago and it’s already very thin….and a bit fuller than it should be…

99.9% Done

Oil Cooler Tin InsulationOil Cooler TinsOil CoolerOil Cooler TinOil Cooler TinsCoil Wiring99.9% DoneI guess it’s safe to say that the engine is about 99.9% complete now. I need to finish the carb rebuild, add the sled tins and hose from the breather to the oil filler and that’ll be that. Three and a half months of cold weekend nights in the garage, watching Breaking Bad (for the 3rd time) and escaping the real world for a few hours each night. I’m happy with the end result. I’m confident that I could easily get a good return on my investment to this point if need be. Of course, for me, my time is free….my wife may disagree. lol Hindsight being 20/20, here are my tips thus far for anybody else starting a project like this. And this only covers the engine build, cleaning, etc.
1. Take lots and lots of pictures. Not only to admire your progress, but it’ll also help you when it comes time to put everything together.
2. Take lots of notes. I document everything I do, not only with pics, but lots of notes and diagrams.
3. Tools! Have the right tools for the job.
4. Patience! Temper tantrums, cussing and fist banging will ensue! Be patient…know when to walk away from the project for a while.
5. Budget. Know your spending limits. Don’t get in over your head!
6. Don’t throw anything away! What may seem like junk to you may be gold for a fellow VW enthusiast.
7. Aftermarket parts….Everybody will have their own opinions on aftermarket parts, for me, I’ll walk the fence. Buy your parts from reputable sellers, there are plenty out there, I have a lot of them listed on our web site. I keep track of every part I buy, where I bought it from and how much I paid for it. Hopefully this will help somebody else. Regardless, try to get your hands on as many original parts as you can. Nothing beats a working original part!
8. Do as much of the work as you can, but be smart enough to know when you’re out of your league and seek help when that time comes. When in doubt, don’t second guess yourself. There are plenty of books and web sites that have the answer you’re seeking. Take the time to look it up!
9. Have fun! For me, working on this project is an escape. A way to submerge yourself into something that you have total control of, even when the garage is freezing cold! lol
10. Be realistic. I’m in this for the long haul. I allotted 3 years for my project Beetle. That’s a realistic goal for me because I won’t have the time, money and knowledge to do everything myself. I’ll have to spread it out over the next couple of years, but still do as much as I can, when I can.

There….10 easy tips to get you on your way. Feel free to add your own input in the comments!

What A Difference A Few Months Can Make

EngineUgly Engine

Just looking back at some pics, the pic on the left is my engine in it’s current state, the pic on the right was taken on 11/07/2014 just before I removed it from the car. Lots and lots of elbow grease and tlc makes a big difference.