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1987 Wolfsburg Weekender Hardtop Rehabilitation Project
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Kopasz
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Location: Portland, OR
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 4:30 pm    Post subject: 1987 Wolfsburg Weekender Hardtop Rehabilitation Project Reply with quote

This is my 1987 Vanagon Wolfsburg Weekender Hardtop. I bought it in August 2008 for $3,500 outside of Portland, OR from a guy who bought it in California and moved up to Portland with it. He and his wife used it to haul the family of 4 to Hood River to go windsurfing.

This thread is to document the process of bringing this awesome vehicle back to its former glory, along with some cool personal upgrades and improvements. I suspect it will be an ongoing post and I hope that the info I post will help others with their projects.

To begin, here is the van as it looked the day I bought it:

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I'll post a few more images and info about my rehab project later tonight.
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adam

'87 Wolfsburg Weekender, Bostig Zetec

The rehabilitation of my Van can be found here: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=5949024#5949024


Last edited by Kopasz on Wed Apr 04, 2012 6:48 pm; edited 1 time in total
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GreenMachineVW
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 5:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

While you're at it, post a couple pictures of the car behind it that looks to be in greater need of restoration. An old Fiat 500? And what a perfectly round tree!

Always like to see custom upgrades. Good luck on the project!
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Kopasz
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 7:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The vehicle behind my van is a 1967 International Harvester Metro panel van. It was one of our work site storage trucks up until about two years ago. I really wanted to keep it and fix it up but I, and my wife, can only handle one vehicle resto at once. I couldn't afford to hold onto it and felt bad that it was being neglected. I sold it to a local artist and he is working on bringing it back to life.

It was a sweet truck. I'll see if I have any other photos of it.
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adam

'87 Wolfsburg Weekender, Bostig Zetec

The rehabilitation of my Van can be found here: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=5949024#5949024
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Kopasz
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 9:19 pm    Post subject: Plans in mind for my vanagon rehabilitation Reply with quote

Here is a list of things already completed on the van prior to going to the body shop:

- Removed nasty PO installed curtains
- Removed carpet (because my cat was locked in the van overnight and there was no litter box for him to go in)
- Installed new linoleum flooring to replace carpet
- Installed Bostig Zetec zero miles engine
- Fatmat xxxtreme sound deadening and ultra touch denim insulation (great sound deadening properties of this denim insulation)
- Removed and cleaned original upholstery on z-bed and rear mattress
- LED gauge lights
- GTI steering wheel
- New fuel pump, fuel lines, fuel tank seal kit (some A-hole put 5 lbs of sugar in my tank)
- New OZ 17x8 wheels and new tires
- Keyless entry alarm system, replaced malfunctioning lock actuators

The things I have on my current to do list for the rehabilitation project:

- Body work and re-paint in the original Wolfram Grey Metallic
- New interior panels
- Clean remaining existing upholstery, add front heated seat inserts
- New stereo, speakers, amp, and sub
- New front cabin carpet
- New turn signals, side markers, trim pieces, mirror gaskets, etc.
- New windows from a 1990 Vanagon
- Trailer hitch
- Burley upper control arms for lowered vans
- H&R Lowering springs, Koni shocks

There is probably more, but I can't think of it all right now.

Here are some pictures of the van's condition before it went to the body shop.

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adam

'87 Wolfsburg Weekender, Bostig Zetec

The rehabilitation of my Van can be found here: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=5949024#5949024


Last edited by Kopasz on Sat Apr 07, 2012 8:10 am; edited 2 times in total
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Kopasz
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2012 9:15 pm    Post subject: Slight color change Reply with quote

okay, I so went to the body shop today to check on progress and help out a bit. I did the following things while I was there:

- Removed front and rear FG bumpers
- Removed old trim glue from gutter rails
- Removed driver's side window and seals
- Sanded driver side seams
- Removed power mirrors
- Picked out the color to be applied

I was originally going to stick with the OEM Wolfram Grey Metallic, but I wanted to make it a little different. At first, we were going to just add coarser metallic flake to the OEM paint, but then I started wondering if the OEM paint was dull by origin or if it was just the crappy paint job PO had done before.

After comparing the OEM color at LKQ with some other colors I liked, it turns out the OEM is pretty dull. I chose Porsche's 2011 Atlas Grey Metallic. It is a dark grey very similar to Wolfram Grey, but a tad darker, more metallic flake, and a blue hue to it. It's close enough to the OEM color that the interior metal, which is staying stock, won't be too obvious.
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adam

'87 Wolfsburg Weekender, Bostig Zetec

The rehabilitation of my Van can be found here: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=5949024#5949024
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Kopasz
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2012 10:24 pm    Post subject: Body work progress photos Reply with quote

Here are some photos of the body work progress from the past couple of days. Click on the images for a larger version.

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Burley hitch arrives Thursday.
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adam

'87 Wolfsburg Weekender, Bostig Zetec

The rehabilitation of my Van can be found here: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=5949024#5949024
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PDXSyncro
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2012 12:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice pics! Although there has been delays I bet that you're excited to see progress.
Is he redoing any of the seam seals for you? Were any of your seems cracked?
Also what's the total price for the body work and paint? I understand if you don't want to share but thought I'd ask as I got a quote from clint from KnC and am in a state of Shocked

Cheers,
glen

BTW very cool that he lets you come in and work on it in his shop. I'm might call this place up and see what they can offer me for the work I'd like done. An option like that would help reduce cost and not have to do a lot of the prep work in the limited space in my garage. Was this something that you negotiated with him?
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dhaavers
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2012 1:01 pm    Post subject: Re: 1987 Wolfsburg Weekender Hardtop Rehabilitation Project Reply with quote

Kopasz wrote:
To begin, here is the van as it pretty much looked the day I bought it...

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Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

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Ummmm...repost, please?
Can't see it...must SEE it!

- a fellow weekender-er
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86 White Westy Weekender
"The WonderVan"

<EDITED TO PROTECT INNOCENT PIXELS>
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ZsZ
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2012 1:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

first thing i had noticed was the "H" sticker, after that the name Smile
Szép lesz! Wink
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Kopasz
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2012 7:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

PDXSyncro wrote:
Nice pics! Although there has been delays I bet that you're excited to see progress.
Is he redoing any of the seam seals for you? Were any of your seems cracked?
Also what's the total price for the body work and paint? I understand if you don't want to share but thought I'd ask as I got a quote from clint from KnC and am in a state of Shocked

Cheers,
glen

BTW very cool that he lets you come in and work on it in his shop. I'm might call this place up and see what they can offer me for the work I'd like done. An option like that would help reduce cost and not have to do a lot of the prep work in the limited space in my garage. Was this something that you negotiated with him?


Hi Glen,

True. Delays are to be expected I guess. I would much rather there be delays and things done right than it be rushed and end up with a bad finished product.

I asked Mike to pay special attention to the seams at the rear wheel fenders because that's where I had the most damage and evidence of water getting into the interior of the van. He ground them down and cleaned them out with a razor blade. I took a scotch bright to them as well. He is going to re-dress them with seam sealer. WHile sanding the rest of the body, he noticed that some of the seams toward the front of the van were uneven and seemed a bit rough, so he worked at those as well.

No problem to ask about the cost. While I don't know the final bill because of the added body work and trim pieces he has been concentrating on, I do know that I am paying under $3K for the body and paint work. He has been paying much more attention to trim pieces and some areas on the van because I have been hovering over his shoulder. I think if you are going to get body work for this low of a price, you need to monitor the process and progress to ensure it's done to your liking. This is probably what I should have done with Clint and the windows seals, but I didn't know then what I know now.

I did not negotiate any price decrease with Mike in exchange for me helping out. I figured the price was low enough already and I just wanted to be involved somehow. I guess by being involved and being there with them for some of the work resulted in a more thorough job overall, which I hope was worth it.

One thing to note however, is that I know this is not going to be a show car quality job when it's all finished. I knew I wouldn't get that for this price point. But, I do know that I will be happy with it and it will look much better than it did before.

PM me if you want his information.
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adam

'87 Wolfsburg Weekender, Bostig Zetec

The rehabilitation of my Van can be found here: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=5949024#5949024
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Kopasz
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2012 8:13 pm    Post subject: Re: 1987 Wolfsburg Weekender Hardtop Rehabilitation Project Reply with quote

dhaavers wrote:
Kopasz wrote:
To begin, here is the van as it pretty much looked the day I bought it...

------------------------------------------
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

------------------------------------------

Ummmm...repost, please?
Can't see it...must SEE it!

- a fellow weekender-er


Absolutely, sorry about that. Thanks for pointing it out. I deleted the image on my imageshack account as it was a duplicate, but it's also the one that was posted here. I have since located the first day photos and I edited the previous post with those original images. Be sure to re-read the post too because I also added a list of things already updated/completed on the van previously.
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adam

'87 Wolfsburg Weekender, Bostig Zetec

The rehabilitation of my Van can be found here: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=5949024#5949024
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Kopasz
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2012 8:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ZsZ wrote:
first thing i had noticed was the "H" sticker, after that the name Smile
Szép lesz! Wink


Fassza! Nem gondoltam, hogy MO-on is olvassák a Sambát. Hét éve laktunk Pest-en az amerikai felességgemel a Király utca és Szív utca sarkán és ott született a kisfiam.

Szeretnék szerezni egy magyar rendszámtáblát az autó elejére, ha tudsz seggitenni.

Sorry for the rough Hungarian, I rarely have a chance to speak/practice it here.
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adam

'87 Wolfsburg Weekender, Bostig Zetec

The rehabilitation of my Van can be found here: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=5949024#5949024
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Kopasz
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2012 10:01 pm    Post subject: hitch, fiber glass bumper work, primer Reply with quote

Hitch arrived from Burley this morning. I raced it over to the body shop to get it installed so we could modify (and repair) the bumper, and get ready for paint.

The hitch went in/on, well, without a hitch. Sorry, couldn't resist.

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We discovered that the bumper had been damaged and repaired very poorly sometime in the past and it required a hell of a lot of work. Most of it was repairable, but the mounting points of the interior of the bumper that were supposed to connect to the brackets on the van were completely gone. Gonna sort that out somehow.....

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Removed some flakey layers of paint and clear coat from the roof carefully with a razor blade.

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The repairs made to the body got primer.

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Hope to have it painted early next week.
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adam

'87 Wolfsburg Weekender, Bostig Zetec

The rehabilitation of my Van can be found here: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=5949024#5949024
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Luckyphil
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2012 5:16 am    Post subject: Australian Weekender Reply with quote

G'day this is as close as I could get to making my van into a real weekender Smile

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ZsZ
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2012 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kopasz wrote:
ZsZ wrote:
first thing i had noticed was the "H" sticker, after that the name Smile
Szép lesz! Wink


Fassza! Nem gondoltam, hogy MO-on is olvassák a Sambát. Hét éve laktunk Pest-en az amerikai felességgemel a Király utca és Szív utca sarkán és ott született a kisfiam.

Szeretnék szerezni egy magyar rendszámtáblát az autó elejére, ha tudsz seggitenni.

Sorry for the rough Hungarian, I rarely have a chance to speak/practice it here.


sent you a PM Smile
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dboxy
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2012 1:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We read it in hungary for sure:)
I have a dead same bus, same year, color, carpets in hungary.
Really nice bus! Please continue posting and good luck with the project!
Respects from hungary

(didn't want to be off topic with the hungarian words)
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Kopasz
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 10, 2012 7:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm glad to see that this forum is read so much around the world.

My cousin's husband first introduced me to the Caravelle in Hungary several years ago and I have to admit I didn't share his enthusiastic love then. I am glad I gave these great vehicles a second chance because they are so damn fun.

More info and progress to come soon. Still not painted but the whole thing should be in primer this week. Hopefully paint too. The bumpers really ate up a lot of time as they needed so much work. I really should have bought new ones but the high price tag made me uncomfortable.

I will need help sorting out my lowering goals if anybody can provide info or insight from experience. I know there is a ton of info on here about all the different spring and shock combos but even with all the info on here, I can't get a solid answer on my finished ride height with whatever springs I install. I will post more info later to see if anybody has a clever way of figuring this out.
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adam

'87 Wolfsburg Weekender, Bostig Zetec

The rehabilitation of my Van can be found here: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=5949024#5949024
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phlogiston
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2012 11:20 am    Post subject: Re: 1987 Wolfsburg Weekender Hardtop Rehabilitation Project Reply with quote

i love threads with pictures of body work.... someday i'll post one.

though i doubt i'll ever be lucky enough to be issued such a cool plate number!

Kopasz wrote:

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GBA 88West LA
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2012 12:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

yeah that plate is classic looks like the van is getting excited too little drip going on there
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Kopasz
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2012 2:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the license plate was one of the deciding factors to go with this van as opposed to the others I was checking out when i bought it a few years ago.

The drip is gone--it was solved when the new engine went in.
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adam

'87 Wolfsburg Weekender, Bostig Zetec

The rehabilitation of my Van can be found here: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=5949024#5949024
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