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Dan's 412 restoration thread
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Danno5
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2016 9:20 am    Post subject: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

Welcome to my restoration thread, which will probably be the slowest ever! It will also be punctuated with lots of questions, since this is my first type 4 and only my 2nd real restoration.

This weekend I worked on my first two goals:
1. Make a money and time budget.
2. Document everything before I break it, so I can figure out what it looked like whole. Took about 200 pictures!

My goal today: Learn from you guys about my first major job (rust-killing).
Here are some of my shots from this weekend:
I. Front-end shots
Comments: some damage to the valance under the bumper that got up into the spare tire well. Must have run up on top of something?
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II. Other exterior shots
Comments: Missing trim and clips, random dings and dents, soldered trim clip holes on the driver's side rocker cover.
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III. Interior shots
Comments: All-original, or at least correct replacements. Not bad other than a trashed headliner.
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IV. First job, killing front-end rust
Comments: This car was featured in the "where is this picture from" thread when I was considering buying it. The owner had posted a rust shot that I couldn't really tell where it was at. Everybody helped solve that using the jacking donut in the shot as a reference point. Here are some detail shots of those areas shooting towards the rear of the car:
Driver's side (good) -
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Passenger's side (bad)-
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More passenger's side from the passenger fender-
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I read a comment by Ray on a previous thread that passenger's side rust often runs up the side of the body where the fender bolts on. Here is a detail shot of that point showing some rust bubbling through.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Here is how I see the general outlines of this part of finding the extent of this rust and killing it. Please chime in with comments/opinions!
1. Take off both fenders (there is an identical line of rust marching down the driver's side too).
2. Grind away undercoating around all of the visible rust. Then grind and dremel away all of the rusty metal.
3. POR-15 or primer the exposed edges of whatever is left to preserve it (hopefully there will be good metal under this! Laughing ).
4. Make friends at my local body shop for the new metal this is going to need. I am really curious on opinions about this part. I am a complete blank-slate when it comes to welding. I would like to learn and have knowledgeable friends who could help, but I think this might be a bad place to learn.

I was debating about taking out the gas tank as well to really get a complete view, especially to see if that front-end damage goes any further back than the spare-tire area. A front-end rebuild is in my future anyhow, so why not now?

So, comments/opinions about the rust or anything else?
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raygreenwood
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2016 9:52 am    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

Great looking car. yes...fenders off.

DO NOT use POR-15 on this car anywhere under the front end. Its a great product. I m midway in stripping my front end completely.

When the fender is off there are a couple of spots we need to see. Access to them will require cutting a small access hole is they are rusted like normal ...and I think they probably are. I can take pictures of what you need on mine...but fenders off first.

Ray
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Danno5
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2016 6:43 am    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

Thanks Ray! Glad to hear this is more-or-less expected rust.

Next step, fenders off!
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2016 7:37 am    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

Some things to think about.

That rectangular rib with the rust through. That is a fairly critical strengthening component.

When you pull off the fender.....there is a small triangular area about 4" by 4" that is at the very bottom of the bulkhead where the actual row of bolts are tuqt hold the fender on.

The difficulty is getting that area derusted. You will hate to hear this.....but you will have to remove the carpetting from the inside from the footwell and a few parts in that area. In fact...ot will pay you to remove all of the carpet carefully.

When you remove the fender you will see it but I will post pictures later

The rust trough you will find when you remove the fender....is immediately connected to the rust in that rectangular chassis member.

You will also likely find.....if you have found those two rust issues.....numerous pinholes in the floorboards around the fringes of the insulating tarboards under the carpet.

This is usually from leaked water staying under the carpet......and later.....from water coming back up through those two rust throughs we spoke about earlier.

On one hand....these are not hard fixes. Tedious. ...but not hard. You need to cut away....or chemically dissolve the rust and then weld in patch metal. It will all be undercoated.

If you do not,weld......this is a good time to learn. I can recommend buying the little mig 140 pqckage that Eastwood sells.

Between the $400 that costs....come with a cart and a few accessories from Harbor freight or Northern tool....and a bottle of gas.....comes to about, $550 at the most.....and thats about 1/3 or less of what having to tow or drive the car to someone to weld up the little pinholea and graft in some basic metal stock. Its easy welding really. You can learn to do just that much in a day of practice with this highly adjustable little mig welder that is just made for sheet metal.

Do not worry. You can fix this.....but you have to clean the rust away....and add some scrap metal back in at the end of that frame member. Ray

EDIT:


To add a little detail ass to why I think you can do the welding no problem and why it needs to be done:

The frame member underneath is really a strengthening box added just like is done on beetle and ghia convertibles. You will notice that it is fully undercoated.

All you really need to do is grind away the undercoat enough to chemically remove/dissolve the rust with something like Jasco metal prep and prime.

Then go to home depot or any metal shop and buy some 1/8" wall square tube steel. Cut a slice of that to fix the missing metal...shape it with a grinder and files so it fits the missing chunk and weld it in. Then grind the welds. Then paint it...then undercoat it agan. It will be smooth....does not have to be pretty under the undercoat...just needs to be firmly attached.

Its an important structural member but is not complicated.

As for whats under the fender when you remove it:

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This is the right front of my car right now with fender removed. The dotted yellow line is where the fender bulkhead attaches to the chassis.

The problem is that the water has been leaking through the bolt holes....and dribbling down into the corner area at the bottom where the red arrow is. You will not see much of this leakage from the carpet or footwell areas...because its at the very end of the heater channel and is happening behind and interior bulkhead as well.

When you pull the carpet out and the panel in the corner under the gas flap pull....and the two heater tubes....all simple stuff....your will see the problem.

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from the outside.....when you remove the fender...this is what you will usually see. That triangular corner is right up against the fender. It gets packed with water and mud. It rusts from both sides.

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The way to access this is to simply cut out the triangular plate. Then you can reach into the cavity with tools , brushes etc...neutralize and dissolve the rust...rustproof and coat the inside...and then just use the plate as a template to cut new sheet metal to weld in to the triangular late you cut out.

Just tack it in...then stitch up the edges. The welding can be crude....as long as its adequate...because no one will ever see this area again once the fender is installed.

This is all easy....but I can tell you you have a very nice car. Well worth working on. and saving...but it will pay you to buy a cheap welder and do this yourself. Because...the condition I see is that you will find a large amount of non-structural pinholes in your floor boards and lower areas.

While non of these will hurt the structure....they will leak constantly and by the rust they create...will be the end of your car some day.

The little Eastwood welder is great for the money...because it has an infinite dial speed for both current and wire speed. Its MADE for sheet metal work and does very well for the money. There are better welders...and some that are cheaper that are almost as god...but the infinite current adjustment and wire speed are crucial for sheet metal.

http://www.eastwood.com/mig-welder-110vac-135a-output.html

just the welder

http://www.eastwood.com/mig135-welder-and-cart-kit.html

I bought this exact kit. The car is necessary and while is cheap...is adequate. You will need an auto darkening helmet and gloves, some spare wire , tip cleaner etc. I spent another $60-70 at Northern tool and elsewhere for all of that. You cn use it right off with no gas with flux core wire for this type of welding...where its hidden so a little splatter does not matter.....but later....spend $125 for a gas bottle at your local welding supply (includes first filling) of mig gas...and about $45 for later fills and make cleaner welds with lower heat. Ray
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Danno5
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2016 11:45 am    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

Whoop! Fenders off. The hardest part was taking off a bent antenna and knocking off one helluva big blob of undercoating on one side.

Ray, I replicated the photos you posted for both my driver's and passenger's side. On the surface they look and feel solid, but this is only after knocking some dirt out. I will sand away some of that surface rust this weekend and see if I find the pinhole perforation you show.

I. Passenger's side pillar
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II. Driver's side pillar
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Many thanks for the welding equipment links! I will check it out and figure those tools into the budget.

In the meantime, I am looking forward to exploring under that carpet. I will go ahead and remove as much as I can.
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2016 12:19 pm    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

POR15 got fisheye/bubbles after a few months on our wire wheeled/clean pans! Mad www.masterseriesct.com silver & black brushed on sticks to everything & looks/lasts better! Cool
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2016 12:58 pm    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

Mike Fisher wrote:
POR15 got fisheye/bubbles after a few months on our wire wheeled/clean pans! Mad www.masterseriesct.com silver & black brushed on sticks to everything & looks/lasts better! Cool



Yes.....POR 15 is a great product. ...but being that is is epoxy based.....and I work with epoxies for a living. ....just like any epoxy.....it is very, very finicky on surface prep, temperature and moisture. It can last forever or fail miserably.

That is just too much risk in my opinion for undercoating on a chassis this complex. It is not any easier to remove than factory undercoating which is a HUGE task on a 411 or 412. Having to redo failed POR 15.....would be hideous.

What I have come to the conclusion of....for my car.....and probably fits many of our cars.....is that unless you have the money and a trailer......to fully remove all front and rear suspension at one time, linkage, trim, external lines etc.....and have the chassis carried to a shop and media blasted to remove the undercoating and paint from the bottom (unless you can media blast it yourself).......it is a slow process.

Aside from removing the front suspension....it takes about 3 days to fully strip to metal with wire wheel, air chisels, angle grinder etc. Thats just the front end. The rear is about the same with the whole pan section in between about 1.5 days.

So.....even taking it somewhere with the heavy level of undercoating...will be expensive to strip.

So do it by segments as mentioned above. After stripping is done I wipe down with acetone and dust the stripped surfaces. Then do any pin hole welding. Meanwhile....its flash rusting.

Coat all surfaces with Jacso metal prep which is phosphoric acid.....and it converts the rust to primer. ...no more rust. You can then prime it if you want.....or go to the NAPA paint shop where they still sell zinc chromate primer in rattle cans.

Mask sensitive areas....and spray with zinc chromate. It will likely never rust again.

Then.....and think about this......see how hard that undercoating is to get off....and how bulletproof it is and how largely complete it still is?.....it has lasted roughly 40 years with very little unerlay prep or rust proofing from the factory.......compared to what you are doing now.

You can still buy that product. The exact factory undercoat product is made by Wurth. It is Wurth stone chip coating. It iw used on VW, Porsche, Audi, Mercedes etc.

Wurth sells it by the quart or gallon in about five factory colors ranging from white to gray to tan to black. If you must have the exact factory texture like the BMW and Porsche guys.....but it by the quart and spend $30 on their air siphon "shutz" gun applicator.

If 90% accurate factory texture is fine with you.... ..where no one will ever see it anyway.....buy it in the rattle can. Same product.

Also.....NAPA sells this same exact product ....probably made by Wurth. in rattle cans in three colors. So.....metal prep, zinc chromate primer then factory undercoating.

Then....go to Napa....buy a quart of your cars color....have then put it in spray cans for you so you can paint the fender wells back to factory color like they were. Ray
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2016 5:46 pm    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

I will definitely use the jasco prep stuff rather than POR-15. Good price too!

I took out the front passenger seat and pulled out carpet today. I found a little perforation where I can look into the rusted jack support I photographed earlier. The edges are strong metal rather than thin, crumbling rust. Confused
I also found some fluff jammed under the black panel on the upper right. You can see it poking out at the bottom in the 2nd picture below. Was loose insulation put into cavities behind body panels during construction like in westfalia vanagons? I briefly thought it was a rodent nest, but no feces or dried urine.
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I have a question for you all before I keep removing the carpet down the sides. In the 2nd picture above, right about at the level of my hand, there is what looks like a tack holding this section of carpet down. What is the best way to get these tacks out? Also, would it be a good idea to remove these black sound deadening panels in the floor? I see some areas elsewhere in the car with some rust around the perimeter of these, although not the ones in this picture. These things feel so oily I imagine they repel water from the surface nicely, but I am guessing they could hold water underneath them.
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2016 6:55 am    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

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


In this first image....great picture!......see those rectangular slots on the right in that curved section?.....that is a chamber directly behind the external rusted triangular area. It is the end of the beater channel. It feeds the vertical tubes behind that sheet metal cover that runs up the A pillar right above it......that feed your defroster and dash vents.

So you need to put a light in front of those slots....after you have sanded away or chemically removed the rust from that triangular area on the outside. This is how you see any pinholes.

If you have pinholes but otherwise solid metal.....the issue is how to neutralize rust on both sides of the outer panel.....the inside inside that chamber and the outside.
Fair warning that 15 years ago I only had a couple of pinholes here. I deadened them with phosphoric acid.....but. because I was not able to totally overcoat on the inside chamber after neutralizing the rust....and I was not careful to absolutely keep the inside of the car bone dry. ...it rusted a bit worse.

If mine had a little less pinholes.....I would neutralize with phosphoric acid and remove the rust agan and then spray underframe coating into the slots to coat it. But at this stage.....major reatoration and preservation. .....this time I will remove that small triangular outer panel so I can reach inside and chemically remove all rust, ...then tack weld a clean outer cover back on ....then coat.



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


The tack....I can't remeber if that is a tang that is welded to the body or just a tack that pulls out. I will look.

But the black floorboards.....tarboards.....yes.....you need to remove them. There are stamped ribs under some of them. They are not a perfect seal to the floor and water flows into these low areas. Major sources of rust.

First.....get some cheap tracing paper from Hobby Lobby.....and trace each panel and mark the position on the paper. You will destroy some of them but yo can re-make them out kf roofing tar sheet stacked up. You need to remove the ar boards......neutralize the rust.....and if you find any pinholes. ....you need to grind the undercoating away from the pinholes on the other side under the car......and the best thing is to tack weld the pinholes closed. Ray
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2016 6:17 am    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

412 4-door sedan, nice. These aren't too common anymore, even among 4-series.

May I ask how come it's a manual in the US? Or is it?

Also what year?

It's overall in good shape ... mine (a '74) was much, much worse (big rust holes and huge dents) when PO started to patch it.
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2016 6:42 am    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

Kharon8 wrote:
412 4-door sedan, nice. These aren't too common anymore, even among 4-series.

May I ask how come it's a manual in the US? Or is it?

Also what year?

It's overall in good shape ... mine (a '74) was much, much worse (big rust holes and huge dents) when PO started to patch it.


Yes....it is a nice car!.....my very first car was a 1972 411 in the same color....Alaska blue metallic.

Its an Automatic .....from his first picture series......and two pictures back....of the passenger side floorboards.....you can see the steel hold down loops on the right side of the tunnel on the floor.......that are the pre-installed hold downs for the hydraulic clutch slave pressure line....are empty Wink

Ray
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2016 10:44 pm    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

X2. Thats an awesome looking car, especially for its age. Best of luck with it
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2016 10:59 pm    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

X2. Thats an awesome looking car, especially for its age. Best of luck with it
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 11, 2018 8:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

Back again! Sorry for the long hiatus!

A question for everybody: I am learning my engine bay before I tear anything apart back there. Most of the fuel injection is OK after looking through my clymer and haynes manuals. I am nearly 90% sure after looking through the wiring diagrams in the tech section about the electronics on the left (driver's) side of the engine bay. Would somebody in the know mind checking my work?
The boxes mounted on the driver's side wall (anterior-to-posterior)
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

I goofed up the fuse labelling below in photoshop, but my best guess is that the green-wired one is for the rear-window defogger and the two red-wired ones are for the gas heater. Am I close to right?

What I have been up to with the rest of the car:

Body -
- Those tar boards in the floor were disgusting. Zero rust underneath them though. It was all in that one frame member than starts running under the front passenger seat and running up over the front wheel arches. New metal on the back third of that frame member now. Turned out to cost almost exactly what Ray said.

Engine -
- I have been reading through Wilson's "How to Rebuild your Volkswagen Air-cooled engine" and have been building up my diagnostic tool supply.
- After doing a quick valve adjustment I did a compression test. All cylinders with a pound or two of 120 psi.
- heading to HF next weekend for a vacuum/fuel pressure gauge to test vacuum pressure. Might go shopping for the leakdown tester at the same time.
- After searching I think 90% of the oil under engine are slow leaks coming from the oil cooler, oil filter, and pushrod tubes. The tubes also look warped. Some sources say the pushrod tube seals can be replaced with the engine in, but I have a disintegrating engine bay seal and generally grimy everything else, so out it goes pending further diagnostics.

Transaxle -
- My differential looks like it had been dipped in sludge and then the junk was baked on. I took a plastic scraper and took off 1/4" thick accretions of what looked like undercoating on the outside of the diff, but flaked off really easily. None of it was wet though. Old leak?
- The only wetness was from the cap covering the governor, the pan gasket, and a weird little stalagtite of ATF on the stabilizer bar right in front of the transmission.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 7:55 pm    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

Did a cranking vacuum pressure test this weekend and found she was pulling 5 in. Hg. That was for the port on the intake that went over to the crankcase breather tube. According to my resources, an air-cooled VW at sea level should be pulling in 10 in. Hg. of cranking vacuum. I am not quite at 1000 feet above sea level, so my optimal vacuum should be no less than 9. Mine was steady, only varying over 1 in. Hg while cranking it over for 10 seconds which is good, but low.

The compression test was OK though, so could the decreased cranking vacuum be related to old vacuum lines? All of mine are in one piece and unfrayed, but very stiff. Certainly on the docket for replacement, but I am wondering if the source of the vacuum leak is something internal I am missing.

Thoughts?
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 9:21 pm    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

Danno5 wrote:
Did a cranking vacuum pressure test this weekend and found she was pulling 5 in. Hg. That was for the port on the intake that went over to the crankcase breather tube. According to my resources, an air-cooled VW at sea level should be pulling in 10 in. Hg. of cranking vacuum. I am not quite at 1000 feet above sea level, so my optimal vacuum should be no less than 9. Mine was steady, only varying over 1 in. Hg while cranking it over for 10 seconds which is good, but low.

The compression test was OK though, so could the decreased cranking vacuum be related to old vacuum lines? All of mine are in one piece and unfrayed, but very stiff. Certainly on the docket for replacement, but I am wondering if the source of the vacuum leak is something internal I am missing.

Thoughts?


Welcome back! It can definately be to old leaking vacuum lines or any leaks....and will be lower when the engine is cold. Ray
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2018 12:35 pm    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

I am willing to bet my vacuum line are all 30+ years old. They all feel rock hard.

A question on the side, when was it last commonplace to assemble spark plug wires rather than buying the terminals already on the wires? The set I just took off, which had set so much they snapped inside the insulation, had a ring sensor on the #1 wire hooked up to the diagnostic socket. The only way I could see getting that sensor on a new set of wires is if you used to buy them with the terminals separate.

I did some more work on the fender well areas I mentioned a while back, specifically where the fenders bolt on just ahead of the doors. A lot of gray, spongy stuff came off, plus some crusty rusty metal. Most of the crusty metal was not from the car but from the fenders. On both sides the bottom of this area had no gray goo though, just perforating rust. It seems to originate from a welded seam. A little work with a wire brush revealed that. Kind of like what is on the shot of your car you shared earlier Ray. On the passenger side I think I lucked out, it is only on fender well side of the seam. On the driver's side I crapped out, there is some working back onto the door as well as some working forward.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

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

I wire-brushed, dremeled, and then used phosphoric acid paint-and-etch stuff on the area. A splash of primer and another spot for new metal in the near future.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2018 9:45 am    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

Danno5 wrote:
...
A question on the side, when was it last commonplace to assemble spark plug wires rather than buying the terminals already on the wires? The set I just took off, which had set so much they snapped inside the insulation, had a ring sensor on the #1 wire hooked up to the diagnostic socket. The only way I could see getting that sensor on a new set of wires is if you used to buy them with the terminals separate.

....


I believe most people buy ready made wire sets nowdays.
As you may know there is no need for the ring sensor besides if you want a full factory look.


//Lars S
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VW412 4-d, -73, Gold Metallic, daily driver
Suzuki T500, -69, Candy Gold, sold Sad
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Danno5
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Joined: March 19, 2016
Posts: 47
Location: Leavenworth, KS
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2018 7:03 pm    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

Lars S wrote:


I believe most people buy ready made wire sets nowdays.
As you may know there is no need for the ring sensor besides if you want a full factory look.


//Lars S


I agree, that is the only way I have ever bought them. Keeping the sensor nicely labelled in the growing museum.

Interesting side note! I found my car's production date using the plate next to the boot lock. My number is 29-4-8619 with 78 hanging off to the side in the paint code spot.
78 = Alaska metallic from the UK brochure. The car is covered in it with a sticker 2 feet to the left saying as much. No surprise there.
29 = 29th week of the year. That would be the week of July 16th in 1973.
4 = Thursday of that week, which would be July 19th.

If I am reading it right, my 412 rolled off the line on July 19th 1973 and her tourist program pickup letter is dated in November. Sat around the factory lot awhile?
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Danno5
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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2018 8:28 pm    Post subject: Re: Dan's 412 restoration thread Reply with quote

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This was a fun project to do after a stressful semester. Kind of soothing to label and tape all of electrical connections.

I won't waste bandwidth with details because they have been covered in relunctantartist and camper's threads.

One thing I would add though is to emphasize this point:
- Pay close attention to those vertical studs on the rear engine carrier bar. Ray brought that point up in reluctant artist's engine removal thread.

Future plans -
Been thinking about the general plan going forward. I have this in my head, but journaling helps me organize my thoughts.

1. The engine has high compression and run's well, but blows oil out the bottom (pushrods obviously wet, some other leaks are probable). Going to demantle it and get to the bottom of that.
2. Do the master rebuild kit (coming from bulkparts) for the auto transmission. It is leaking right now, but also due diligence.
3. Work on the main bearings for the differential (due diligence too). I think that this hasn't been addressed on here as much, so I will do a thread just for that. Ray is helping me with parts, tools, and setup in an 003 parts thread on here.
4. Front end tear-down! More on that obviously, but need sleep!
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