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Sebring #249 official build thread
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WHYYYTRYYY
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 06, 2016 8:42 pm    Post subject: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

With significant progress on the car today, I decided to start an actual build thread to post my updates. You can see the condition of the car from the day I got it here http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=658372&highlight=

Here's a few pics to show how I received the car:
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Check the previous thread to see disassembly to this point.
So today my intention was to separate body from chassis. Everything seemed to work out fine. Having a garage to work in with tons of equipment is always a huge help as well.
Pulled the canopy first and removed hinges.
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Used the grinding wheel on all the rusty bolt heads mounting the body, and then added a little vertical motivation to the body only via a 2 post lift. Eventually with a little prying the body and chassis separated with a satisfying 'thwok' and the wheels plopped down the 3 inches to the ground.
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Pulled the chassis out of the way...
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Took some measurements, and built up a sturdy frame to drop the body on
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Voila! Body is locked in place
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Chassis pics
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All my junk that needs to disappear from the garage by Monday morning
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As always, more pics/progress to come!
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WHYYYTRYYY
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2016 6:35 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Ugh, hit a snag today. First, I got the tunnel supported so I could strip it.
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Then, I started peeling up rubber sheeting on the tunnel so I could verify chassis number. Well, I immediately noticed a major problem. This is after I dug out/off all the rubber.
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So. Now what? Should I attempt to repair the rear of this frame? Looks like scrap to me at this point. The chassis number did match up to the title...little consolation to me, I suppose.
After some profanity time when I discovered the major damage, I hopped on craigslist to find a better starting point. I found a guy who has a 1600cc engine that's in beautiful shape. He also has a buggy body mounted on a chassis, also excellent shape. The problem? Swing axle, not IRS.
So my question: If I were to purchase this chassis, and weld in the diagonal arm mounting brackets that are necessary, is there any other differences on the chassis? I did not see a chassis number in the same location as where mine was. Any advice guys?? Thanks for all your continuing help on this project!
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Letterman7
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2016 6:53 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Ouch... toast. Start looking for a donor, or if you can swing it Acme in Lancaster, PA sells reconditioned chassis that are pretty nice. You can even have them install disc brake sets, engines, etc. Just tell them you don't need the pans or perimeter frame (though they may not cut those off anyway). A buggy chassis will be too short anyway.

psst... cut the VIN off the tunnel and keep it....
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WHYYYTRYYY
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2016 8:34 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Ahhh... I didn't even consider the chassis would be different length. Damn. I will almost certainly purchase the engine from him though. It's worth what he was asking for the frame and engine combined (not that I would pay that anyway, I'm a haggler).
I will check into Acme. I will also keep the VIN 'for sentimental purposes only' Wink

Tomorrow I will try to clean up my frame. I have grinding/blasting tools, a big welder, and time. Who knows, maybe I'll fix and reinforce the f&%k outta my current tunnel. I like to make things better than stock whenever possible.

Thanks for the help.
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woodoctr
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2016 8:56 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

I've owned enough Sebrings and Sterlings to say this with some authority.... that frame is the "lifes blood" of a Sebring. Yours is dead...unsafe...do not put any more time into it. You've got to understand we don't even have the luxury of the full pan with our cars so that "backbone" frame is the only thing that is holding us on the road. The body is just along for the ride. Letterman has the right idea there... If I was building a Sebring right now I'd hit Acme up in Pennsylvania. They've also got experience with other engine types as well. They had one of their Ecotec set-ups at Carlisle. If I was going through all the stuff you are doing with this car I'd just go ahead and do Subie or Ecotec with it.
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WHYYYTRYYY
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2016 2:09 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Just spoke to 'Big John' over at Acme. Very cool and knowledgeable guy. He said he will try to track down a tunnel for me. I'll still keep an eye out , but he said he should have something for me, hopefully in a week or so. Very happy I called them.
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WHYYYTRYYY
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 11:15 am    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Need some assistance here. Will a super beetle chassis fit under this body? I have a line on a '73 super beetle in decent shape that I can get tomorrow to drop this body on. Any advice?
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jspbtown
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 11:36 am    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Not without significant modification. The Supers have a McPherson strut front suspension.

Now you can cut the front off and weld on the front of a standard Beetle...so anything is technically possible.
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kitcarguy
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 2:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

You can use everything but the front end lol .

WHYYYTRYYY wrote:
Need some assistance here. Will a super beetle chassis fit under this body? I have a line on a '73 super beetle in decent shape that I can get tomorrow to drop this body on. Any advice?

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WHYYYTRYYY
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 7:01 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Ahh, I'll keep looking.

So there's been quite a time gap here since I last posted. Woman issues had me sidetracked. Anyway, a while back I brought my old cracked frame to Acme in PA, 157 miles away, and bought a 'better' frame. After laboriously sandblasting most of the 'new' frame, it was in pretty bad shape. Rust holes in various low spots on the tunnel, needed new frame head, damage tubes inside, etc... another dead end.
I must say, while I wasn't a huge fan of the owner of Acme (he told me on the phone the frame was in better shape), the two guys that actually worked there in the garage were awesome. Stayed after their shift was up to help me pull a couple extra parts off my old frame, and showed me the garage and sweet jigs they use to properly align frame while cutting and welding it. And gave excellent information for my build. They also refused a tip, even though for a while I was just wasting time checking out the cool builds they were working on! I left one for them anyway because of the excellent service, but still. Good people.

To get this project rolling, I am now trying to just buy a running beetle and swapping the body, instead of building from scratch. Hard to find these things! Anyone know of a lead on a running and driving, but ugly beetle for sale in the NJ/PA ish area?
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sbussard
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2016 9:29 am    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

http://www.searchtempest.com/ is a decent way to search multiple craigslist sites. Sometimes you need to change around the keywords you use when you search, because you never know how people have listed their stuff. Try vw bug, vw beetle, add the word frame or maybe the word chassis. That kind of thing.

My son and I picked up a 72 vw chassis in ohio a few years ago for $350 with title. They are out there, just getting harder to find.

I searched around a bit just now and without too much hassle found this one.
http://youngstown.craigslist.org/cto/5826883301.html At $1500, I wouldn't buy that one, but I would at least contact the guy and see if he'd be willing to keep the motor, etc.

Another good place can be ebay. Here's a no reserve auction currently at just over $1000 in Ohio. Clean title and with a motor that turns. http://www.ebay.com/itm/1967-Volkswagen-Beetle-Classic-/192019864569?_trksid=p2141725.m3641.l6368

Good luck with the build, I'm looking forward to seeing it come together for you.

Scott
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2016 7:18 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Unfortunately I've heard that about Acme. And their engine builds aren't the highest caliber. Check Craigslist locally... http://frederick.craigslist.org/cto/5869731998.html

Sell what you don't need...
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2016 9:32 am    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Letterman7 wrote:
Ouch... toast. Start looking for a donor, or if you can swing it Acme in Lancaster, PA sells reconditioned chassis that are pretty nice. You can even have them install disc brake sets, engines, etc. Just tell them you don't need the pans or perimeter frame (though they may not cut those off anyway). A buggy chassis will be too short anyway.

psst... cut the VIN off the tunnel and keep it....


Toast? That's mint condition here in Illinois!
Jeff
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Wolfgangdieter
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2016 4:25 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Here's one in Indiana for $250 with title

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/classifieds/detail.php?id=1988144
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WHYYYTRYYY
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 7:03 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Progress finally.

Made a big purchase and bought a 'running' 1969 bug.


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It's a shame the body is so nice, but I need that chassis its riding on! Today I got the body totally separated from the car. Unfortunately the 2 two post lifts we have were occupied, so I couldn't start the body swap. This beetle body is FOR SALE, by the way, and is in excellent shape. Any estimates on it's value?? I'm including everything from the car, minus the actual car part. Taking offers...


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Beetle received a full restoration in early 2000's, and everything is in very good shape. Honestly it kills me to separate a car this nice, but you do what ya gotta do. Crying or Very sad
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64glitterbug
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 7:34 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

NO..........Don't do it.....Find another sacrificial bug. That looks too nice!
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WHYYYTRYYY
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 7:44 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

64glitterbug wrote:
NO..........Don't do it.....Find another sacrificial bug. That looks too nice!



Yeah, I heard that from every person that saw it as well. But I wanted a clean chassis, and this is how to get it. The car will live on if someone buys this body!
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 8:18 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Too nice to sacrifice - there are other chassis out there. Don't take a nice VW off the streets.
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2016 12:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

I have a 1965 chassis available. That bug is in too good of shape, and I'm from Volksrods.com!
Jeff
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2016 3:52 pm    Post subject: Re: Sebring #249 official build thread Reply with quote

Cut it up.
If the price was right, parting out what you don't want might make you a buck.
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