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1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build
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jacobcallaghan
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2021 8:46 am    Post subject: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

Hey there samba,

Exciting news got a few new projects going on at the house.

1. 1958 Kombi

Picked this up from a guy in Canada who got it out of the woods of California. She is a bit crusty but will come back to life nicely. Plan to keep it patina. Mechanical restore, fix needed rust, build custom camper interior and drive daily and camp.

Mechanical restore is first on the docket and have a couple of questions. So i have never had this early of a bus. Its got a 1956 transmission. I believe stock gearing. The transmission appears to be freshly overhauled. Previous owner swapped out the original trans. I would love to keep this transmission but curious about motor combo. I initially was thinking 1600 sp as most my busses have that. But now maybe thinking 36hp or 40hp. I have never had either of those. Are they suitable for daily driving? Looking to cruise 55. Another engine option is a 1776 dual port. Ny neighbor just hooked me up with a clean one needing to be built. Would a 1776 be to much for the 56 tranny?

Second question is regarding roof. There is some good rust in the roof. Being that it is going to be camper it got me thinking roof swap. Was thinking of doing a dormobile conversion. Has anyone here done it? How is the process? Another option was ragtop grafting. But scared of leaking. I drive my bus all winter long.

2. 1961 Samba

This bus is not so rough compared to the 58. It sadly has been lowered and had a bit other custom options. I plan to bring it mostly back to stock as far as mechanics and outside look go.

Going to put a new transmission to bring it back stock height in rear. Put new stock spindles on the front.

After she is back to stock height, running and stopping, its time to bring her back to og paint. It has one respray over the og. Should come out nicely.

Last but not least (maybe not a popular option) is to build out a cozy camper interior. I have always thought a 23 window would make a great camper. And seeing that this one has no interior mine as well make it come true.



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Okie Adam
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2021 8:47 am    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

Man I love a 58!
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2021 10:10 am    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

jacobcallaghan wrote:

1. 1958 Kombi

Nice Bus!

61 Samba looks good, interested in more photos of that one too

jacobcallaghan wrote:
Mechanical restore is first on the docket and have a couple of questions. So i have never had this early of a bus. Its got a 1956 transmission. I believe stock gearing. The transmission appears to be freshly overhauled. Previous owner swapped out the original trans. I would love to keep this transmission but curious about motor combo. I initially was thinking 1600 sp as most my busses have that. But now maybe thinking 36hp or 40hp. I have never had either of those. Are they suitable for daily driving? Looking to cruise 55. Another engine option is a 1776 dual port. Ny neighbor just hooked me up with a clean one needing to be built. Would a 1776 be to much for the 56 tranny?


You can cruise 55mph with the stock transmission and a 36hp or 40hp but that is close to the comfortable limit. It gets loud inside and you are close to really high RPMs. Acceleration is pretty slow so it really depends on your driving style and how you feel about it. A fresh 36/40 will feel pretty strong versus a tired one, I've had both in Buses and the difference is very noticeable. A 1776cc will feel super peppy because of the low split-case gearing but you are still limited on top speed or you risk over-revving it. Obviously with a well-built 1776 you can cruise a little faster at a higher RPM. 60 easily, probably 65. Not sure on any torque issues there hurting the early transmission, someone else will have to answer that. You can definitely run a 1600SP no problem.
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Lind
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2021 10:24 am    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

EverettB wrote:
jacobcallaghan wrote:

1. 1958 Kombi

Nice Bus!

61 Samba looks good, interested in more photos of that one too

jacobcallaghan wrote:
Mechanical restore is first on the docket and have a couple of questions. So i have never had this early of a bus. Its got a 1956 transmission. I believe stock gearing. The transmission appears to be freshly overhauled. Previous owner swapped out the original trans. I would love to keep this transmission but curious about motor combo. I initially was thinking 1600 sp as most my busses have that. But now maybe thinking 36hp or 40hp. I have never had either of those. Are they suitable for daily driving? Looking to cruise 55. Another engine option is a 1776 dual port. Ny neighbor just hooked me up with a clean one needing to be built. Would a 1776 be to much for the 56 tranny?


You can cruise 55mph with the stock transmission and a 36hp or 40hp but that is close to the comfortable limit. It gets loud inside and you are close to really high RPMs. Acceleration is pretty slow so it really depends on your driving style and how you feel about it. A fresh 36/40 will feel pretty strong versus a tired one, I've had both in Buses and the difference is very noticeable. A 1776cc will feel super peppy because of the low split-case gearing but you are still limited on top speed or you risk over-revving it. Obviously with a well-built 1776 you can cruise a little faster at a higher RPM. 60 easily, probably 65. Not sure on any torque issues there hurting the early transmission, someone else will have to answer that. You can definitely run a 1600SP no problem.

The 36hp engine does not like to rev high, so 36hp buses are limited on their top speed. 40hp and bigger engines like to rev higher, so you can go faster.

A split case transmission or a small nut tunnel tranny will easily do 55 with a 40hp or bigger engine. I have driven a couple barndoor buses with stock transmissions and 1600 engines, and they do 60-65mph all day long. As long as you don't abuse it, the transmissions can take the power just fine. That said, split case transmissions are generally weaker, and the 2nd gear synchro is NLA, so it is difficult to get them rebuilt.
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German Krew
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2021 12:28 pm    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

jacobcallaghan good finds that dove blue will buff out sick! Popcorn Popcorn
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jacobcallaghan
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2021 3:24 pm    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

Thanks for the replies. I think i may just assemble the 1776 and try it out. Dont have much to loose. I drive my busses easy so i think the trany will hold up!


Got the beam disassembled and painted today. Brakes are on order. Going to rebuild the steering box this week. It came in pieces so we will se how this goes. Any tips or recources?
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thirtyseven
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2021 3:38 pm    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

That blue kombi is a beauty!
Running taller tires (like 6.70-15) should help balancing with the gearing of the trans. However, I don't know how much they would help in reducing the RPM compared to, say, a later trans... maybe anecdotal in the end. But what I know is that they sure would look awesome Smile
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jacobcallaghan
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2021 4:37 pm    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

thirtyseven wrote:
That blue kombi is a beauty!
Running taller tires (like 6.70-15) should help balancing with the gearing of the trans. However, I don't know how much they would help in reducing the RPM compared to, say, a later trans... maybe anecdotal in the end. But what I know is that they sure would look awesome Smile


Going to run tall tires for sure. It cam with way tall ones and am so stoked on the highstance. Shasta trip here I come! Find me in the ditch wondering why my bus is not a snowmobile
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jacobcallaghan
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2021 4:37 pm    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

thirtyseven wrote:
That blue kombi is a beauty!
Running taller tires (like 6.70-15) should help balancing with the gearing of the trans. However, I don't know how much they would help in reducing the RPM compared to, say, a later trans... maybe anecdotal in the end. But what I know is that they sure would look awesome Smile


Going to run tall tires for sure. It came with way tall ones and am so stoked on the highstance. Shasta trip here I come! Find me in the ditch wondering why my bus is not a snowmobile
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jacobcallaghan
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:23 pm    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

Update today. Installed my first rocker: driver side.

In my years of owning Volkswagens I have never quite learned to weld. Never had to. Each bus I owned was in good enough shape.

Today I got schooled. Welding is insanely challenging. Way harder than the videos and threads make it out to be. So hard not to burn through. But none the less had a blast.

The result is not amazing. But luckily itís a rocker and the bus is patina. Frame is solid so no fucking around with safety thank goodness. I think if I welded the frame I would die going down the road.

Needles to say happy to be learning and picking up a new tool. Will post some photos some photos tomorrow. Honestly a little embarrassed to post my work. Yíall are masters here.

Cheers,

Jacob

Ps rest assured no welding needs done on the 23 window. So you can sleep easy knowing no idiot is fucking up a good bus!
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jacobcallaghan
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:28 pm    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

Ps also found a good krylon match for dove blue and then added some textured paint to make fake rust to blend the pannel
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LAGrunthaner
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2021 3:13 am    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

Applause
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Have you considered simply starting with a nicer bus? I don't know what your skills are, but the race is easier if you can see the finish line. If you are not a runner, don't start off doing a marathon.
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Okie Adam
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:24 am    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

jacobcallaghan wrote:
Ps also found a good krylon match for dove blue and then added some textured paint to make fake rust to blend the pannel


There are a lot of folks, myself included, that would love to hear what Krylon color you found that is close to dove blue!
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:27 am    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

jacobcallaghan wrote:
Ps also found a good krylon match for dove blue and then added some textured paint to make fake rust to blend the pannel


What was the paint code or color of the krylon paint for dove blue? I am interested in the textured paint to make the fake rust look. Only if you have time, the information would be appreciated. Thanks.
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:50 am    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

Here is the paint info. I sprayed primer then the slate blue rattle. Then some textured spray paint. Then sand to taste. Sometimes I sand thru just a bit to the primer to match the fade of the dove blue.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:53 am    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

iubhounds wrote:
jacobcallaghan wrote:
Ps also found a good krylon match for dove blue and then added some textured paint to make fake rust to blend the pannel


What was the paint code or color of the krylon paint for dove blue? I am interested in the textured paint to make the fake rust look. Only if you have time, the information would be appreciated. Thanks.


Also curious as to the Krylon Dove Blue can. Wondering how well that would work for small misc parts.
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jacobcallaghan
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2021 9:10 am    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

Patiently Impatient wrote:
iubhounds wrote:
jacobcallaghan wrote:
Ps also found a good krylon match for dove blue and then added some textured paint to make fake rust to blend the pannel


What was the paint code or color of the krylon paint for dove blue? I am interested in the textured paint to make the fake rust look. Only if you have time, the information would be appreciated. Thanks.


Also curious as to the Krylon Dove Blue can. Wondering how well that would work for small misc parts.


I was wrong on being krylon. Itís rust oleum. Slate blue!
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velvetgreen
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2021 9:10 am    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

x10- if that is a good match to dove blue i am interested as well^^^^
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:25 pm    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

Updates:

58:

Pulled, cleaned, inspected and painted the front beam. Everything looked great minus tie rods drag link and a few seals.

Made an order for the remaining metal. Should show up next week. Stoked to get more metal on this bad girl!

Also started grinding the interior for metal repair and paint. Going to spray a grey primer than a sound insulation like lizard skin. Maybe? Anyone ever use this product? My buddy On the coast put it in his bay but thatís all I know who have used it.

Trying to figure out what to do with these broken hinges
61:

Pulled the engine. Itís a new motor but kinda performance parts esc. Thinking about removing the Weber and going with a stock carb but seeing as it is a dual port we will see.

Found a local buddie to trade transmissions. So I should soon have a stock big nut tranny.

Sadly upon further inspection it looks like they might have sanded down to bare metal when they painted. Sad. Might respect with the stock color. Unsure.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2021 2:05 pm    Post subject: Re: 1958 Kombi and 1961 Samba Build Reply with quote

jacobcallaghan wrote:
Here is the paint info. I sprayed primer then the slate blue rattle. Then some textured spray paint. Then sand to taste. Sometimes I sand thru just a bit to the primer to match the fade of the dove blue.


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Thanks jacobcallaghan
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