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Is this rust too far gone?
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jjj5278
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:47 pm    Post subject: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

I was hoping to pick up a Bug to get work on in the winter and drive it in the spring but Iím worried about this rust. The car comes with new heater channels, but a lot of the rust is above that. The rest is behind the passenger side door. Iím just worried this rust is too bad and the car wouldnít be safe to drive. I donít have welding tools to replace the channels or the side metal either. Thoughts?

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Glenn Premium Member
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:53 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

jjj5278 wrote:
I donít have welding tools to replace the channels or the side metal either. Thoughts?

Take a pass.

It will cost way more to have someone fix that then to buy a solid car.
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jjj5278
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:57 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

Glenn wrote:
jjj5278 wrote:
I donít have welding tools to replace the channels or the side metal either. Thoughts?

Take a pass.

It will cost way more to have someone fix that then to buy a solid car.

Thatís what I was afraid of. Sucks Bc itís tough to find a Bug in the Midwest at all, so shipping tends to eat into my budget way too much. (Probably why Iíve been looking off and on for 10 years.) Iím guessing itíll be another 10 years before I find one. I can find plenty of classic American cars, but no Bugs.


Last edited by jjj5278 on Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:59 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:57 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

I agree with Glenn.
Speaking as a non-professional but someone who has tackled a few rusty cars, its always worse than it looks. Good luck.
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jjj5278
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:58 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

far rider wrote:
I agree with Glenn.
Speaking as a non-professional but someone who has tackled a few rusty cars, its always worse than it looks. Good luck.

Yeah, I figured. I was told thereís probably at least an inch of rust you canít see when you can see some, haha.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 5:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

Oof! Yeah.
If you don't have the skills and the tools. Please pass on this car.

Grandpa Pete once wrote here. "Buy the best most rust free car you can afford and start from there." Or some shit like that.
I listened and found a great rust free car in the SW USA. Bought it and have never looked back.

Good Luck.
Glenn wrote:
jjj5278 wrote:
I donít have welding tools to replace the channels or the side metal either. Thoughts?

Take a pass.

It will cost way more to have someone fix that then to buy a solid car.

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Pruneman99
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 5:03 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

I think you need to rethink.

You can't afford NOT to have a bug shipped from the Southwest.

Rust will eat your wallet way more than a shipping company. Unfortunately, rust also eats your time, excitement, and desire to drive and work on an old car.

The bug you have pictured here is roached. I wouldn't take it on as a project if it was given to me.
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Glenn Premium Member
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 5:09 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

I have to ask... what is your budget?
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supercub
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 5:13 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

Wow that's pretty bad. Most people would say that body is done for but there are some threads on here documenting miraculous saves of cars as bad or even worse than that one, but that is not the norm. You say you don't have any welding equipment but do you have any welding experience? Most of those rotted sections are available aftermarket in various qualities and prices. You do say you were looking for a winter project to drive next spring. For a novice welder, that is a multi-year project in my opinion unless you are working on it full-time and your skills develop quickly. It would likely cost a small fortune to have a body/restoration shop do the work. Realistically unless the car is pretty much free and you really want a massive project, I'd keep looking.

Edit: Seems like in the time it took me to type this, a lot of others have already offered the same advice.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 5:20 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

I've seen worse, hell, I've driven worse.

The question I'd ask is what is your overall goal for your project car? If you're just looking for something to bomb around in with not much care for looks or longevity, then you could bodge that thing together well enough for such purpose even without a welder. If you're wanting something to hang on to for a while, then I'd echo the sentiment to find one in the best condition you can to start with -- but if you do, please take better care of it than the previous owners of the one pictured.
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jjj5278
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 5:23 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

My budget changes constantly, lol. But I canít spend $5000 plus another $1500 in shipping for a car I can only use 3-4 months a year. But right now my budget isnít as much as it used to be unfortunately. Thatís why I was hoping to find one around me.

I have some welding experience but I donít have access to the tools/welder anymore. I have a nice shop space on my property but I was hoping to only have to do engine work.

This particular Bug didnít say too much about rust. When I went and looked at it I realized it was a lot worse, but wasnít completely sure about how bad it was since I havenít done a ton of work on rusty cars.

Thanks again everyone! I appreciate the extra sets of eyes.
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jjj5278
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 5:30 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

mukluk wrote:
I've seen worse, hell, I've driven worse.

The question I'd ask is what is your overall goal for your project car? If you're just looking for something to bomb around in with not much care for looks or longevity, then you could bodge that thing together well enough for such purpose even without a welder. If you're wanting something to hang on to for a while, then I'd echo the sentiment to find one in the best condition you can to start with -- but if you do, please take better care of it than the previous owners of the one pictured.


Yeah, the goal is not for a show queen or anything. Just a fun car to drive around in the summer. Here in MN that gives me 3 months...maybe. Thatís why I was hoping to not spend a bunch of money, so Iím guessing Iíll have to hold off again.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 5:35 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

Unfortunately, the painful truth is with the budget you have, you will doubtfully find an early bug that you can afford thatís not roached out. You may want to look at 68+ cars as they tend to sell for less. Another consideration is looking into a dune buggy. You may be able to pick one up out of the Midwest for cheaper than a bug. Also, you can buy a tow bar and go pick it up. Seems like I see buggies out of Michigan a lot.

Good luck in your search.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 5:37 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

Give us the details of what you're looking for.

year if it matters
mechanical status if it matters
body shape if it matters (which obviously it does
modifications or no?
budget....

It can't be that hard to find you a VW if you're serious about wanting one. Heck, I just sold a RUST FREE super beetle here in california a couple weeks ago for $300. It didn't have much for interior and it didn't have an engine but you can get a rust free running driver out here for $2000 and have it back there in minnesota for $3500 total
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 5:42 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

Quote:
Yeah, the goal is not for a show queen or anything. Just a fun car to drive around in the summer. Here in MN that gives me 3 months...maybe. Thatís why I was hoping to not spend a bunch of money, so Iím guessing Iíll have to hold off again.


I here you there. I'm next door in WI. I usually put my '66 away sometime in November and get it out mid March because I miss driving it. Usually by then the road salt is nearly gone and I'm not saving it for anyone else anyway.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 6:12 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

jjj5278 wrote:
My budget changes constantly, lol. But I canít spend $5000 plus another $5000 to make it safe to drive for a car I can only use 3-4 months a year.

Here's your reality.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:27 pm    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

If you could fix it yourself, I'd say go for it, but you can't so I'd pass.
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2019 7:22 am    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

What year is it? That makes a difference. Since itís a 67 or earlier I would save it. I had to replace all of the same metal you would have to. Itís hard to tell but the heater channels donít look terrible, just the stuff around them. I would estimate no more than a $750 in sheet metal for decent stuff since it has new heater channels for it. For my 64 I had 22-23 replacement panels I bought for it and many other I made. The lower 6-8 inches of the body was almost completely replaced. But my Restoration is three years and coming, I had never welded before when I got it, now Iím a great welder lol. If itís under a grand it might be worth it. https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=684086
Here is its restoration thread, go through the gallery and you can see what it took to get all the repairs done. Look on Craigslist for a mig welder in your area. Also, you will probably have to repaint it all if you replace the metal it needs. You can do all of the work yourself, but it might go over 5k, but it will be completely restored. Save a VW from the crusher!
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2019 7:43 am    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

Let someone else drop $10-15k into the car and then buy it for a fraction of their investment. The metal may be not super expensive but the equipment investment along with time and materials will make this not a cheap fix. Add into it the question whether you have the motivation, room and local help? There are cars I have seen that Iím confident that if I had the space, I could complete most of the repairs. Like you, I have room for mechanical, but no room for a pan off resto. And I wonít in the foreseeable future. I also like to drive my cars, not sit and look at them in various states of disassembly. Iíve never seen the appeal of that.
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2019 7:57 am    Post subject: Re: Is this rust too far gone? Reply with quote

Ceckert64 wrote:
the heater channels donít look terrible


Yes they do.
Especially if one can't use a welder like the original poster states Exclamation

If you want to learn how to weld it could be a nice project, but make no mistake whatsoever, that car requires some serious welding work, it is not an easy task; really don't expect to be driving after a weekend....or 2 weekends Laughing . And that's only the welding, I bet that car needs much more than just welding.
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