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Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26
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fossil
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2021 11:28 pm    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

That´s an interesting pic! The headlights sit in a sort of tube. This tube is inserted into the fender. But what I see for the first time here: There seems to be a sort of frame around the insertion hole in the fender. Could be a rubber profile.
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2021 11:52 pm    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

The headlight housing is in a form of a tube, yes. I think the housing itself is welded to the fender but the seam is not hidden or blended in but instead left as is thus forming a kind of a lip around where the housing sits. I've seen similar type of finishing on other cars.
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 23, 2021 2:56 am    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

I'm curious and looking forward the solution for the roof gutter.
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 23, 2021 10:07 am    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

For reference, this is one of the replicas that VW had made. It is on display at the Autostadt museum right next to the factory in Wolfsburg. This will give you an idea of how much more accurate the rebody of this chassis is to the previous replicas. Not even in the same ballpark.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 23, 2021 10:58 am    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

splitjunkie wrote:

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Super Beetle model W30/26 Shocked
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 24, 2021 1:51 am    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

Jacks wrote:
splitjunkie wrote:

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I've never understood why they made the front and rear wings look so awful compared to how the original looked.
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 24, 2021 12:26 pm    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

Over all the car is pretty terrible from a authenticity standpoint. It doesn't look half bad from the side, but front and back the wrong windshield shape, wrong front and rear hatch stick out like a sore thumb. By far the worst is the fenders. They are not anywhere close to the correct shape. If they would just fix that detail, the car would look much better.
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 24, 2021 1:08 pm    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

splitjunkie wrote:
Over all the car is pretty terrible from a authenticity standpoint. It doesn't look half bad from the side, but front and back the wrong windshield shape, wrong front and rear hatch stick out like a sore thumb. By far the worst is the fenders. They are not anywhere close to the correct shape. If they would just fix that detail, the car would look much better.


Agreed! They remind me of the fiberglass fender extension pieces that were added to cars back in the day! Yuck! They should have painted it dark brown with a glitter. And added orange and yellow stripes down the sides!
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2021 3:41 am    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

Is the front windscreen top edge on original b/w photo slightly more curved than the blue car and the reconstruction? Or just photo angle distortion?
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2021 12:06 pm    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

Most impressive work Undis !!! Very Happy Very Happy
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2021 1:49 pm    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

olo wrote:
Is the front windscreen top edge on original b/w photo slightly more curved than the blue car and the reconstruction? Or just photo angle distortion?


It's several years since I took those pictures, but yes, the windshield shape on the blue car is completely wrong.
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2021 9:59 pm    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

olo wrote:
Is the front windscreen top edge on original b/w photo slightly more curved than the blue car and the reconstruction? Or just photo angle distortion?


That is my impression, looks flatter on both the replica/reconstruction cars, let's hope by the time it's ready for paint and a windscreen it looks more rounded.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 26, 2021 12:55 am    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

Yes, the Autostadt W30 is full of mistakes. This becomes even more obvious as we witness the build of the Grundmann team/René Große recreation.

Having said that, I don't want to be too harsh on it as well. After all we don't know how much reference material the builder had to go on. And we don't know what was the brief given to him by the VW museum. Likely they did not want a historically correct example but something that looks the part to most people. We see some examples of that philosophy in the museum's collection.

What the HO team is doing is unprecedented. It already showed when they did the VW38/06. Now with the W30 it's the same story. Lots of nerdy details that in some cases will not even be visible once the car is finished. But we all will know they're there.

But going back to the Autostadt W30, here is a small except from an article that was published in the German magazine VW Speed. Some rare images of the car under construction. I must say that without the fenders it doesn't look too bad. Wink
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 26, 2021 1:55 am    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

You make some good points Undis, I totally can get why you wouldn't worry about details you can't see, but if you are going to the bother of making a replica for VW no less, you'd think they would get the outside details better, such as the curve of the front opening hatch, windscreen, front lights, shape where the horn mounts, the horn itself and particularly the fenders (wings).

All in all its a good representation of the W30, it's mostly the fenders that spoil it. I'm just so glad we are having the closest thing to a real body being made right now, mated to an original chassis.

If the earlier replica's were much better, it makes you wonder if this one would have been built, so in a way maybe it's good they were built not so accurate so we can have this one done properly, so it has the rightful place on the original chassis.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 26, 2021 3:49 am    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

I suspect this car would still be built for one reason alone. It is based on the chassis backbone of an actual VW30 and as was hinted early on, I am assuming other parts of the drive train.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 26, 2021 7:27 am    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

Undis wrote:
Jack O'Neill wrote:

I feel weird seeing the front fender before it is properly "converted". Feels like surprising my grandpa in his underwear Smile Anyway, I take they are adjusting one from each side, and then will just "mirror" the other one to the same specs?

Did the restoring team sourced the final headlights? I'm really curious to know where the originals came from, they have such a distinctive look to them!


I'm sure that's what's going to happen. As you can see they have finished the left door and also now working on both left fenders. Once everything looks good they'll repeat it all on the right.

As for the headlights, I don't know for 100% but my guess is those are generic units from Bosch and would not be too difficult to locate. I never understood why the blue one at Autostadt has those weird bulbous headlights as used on some American cars of the time.

Also note how the headlight is gently sunk into the fender at the lower part. Beautiful!

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If you imagine the headlight bucket removed completely from this excellent photo, you see the smooth fender underneath. Just like the shape of the V3/1, before they moved the headlights into the fenders.

It seems the fenders were converted as an afterthought, or was it part of Komendas scheme? One would think it would have been simpler to integrate the headlights from the beginning, like on a stock beetle.
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The wooden mockup of V303 originally had the same ugly buckets, on smooth fenders, but just for a few weeks. My personal guess is that Edsel Ford convinced Ferdinand and Ferry that as long as you would make millions of these cars, the unit price of a specially designed headlight assembly would not outweigh the estetic and aerodynamic advantages. The 1937 Ford is the first Ford with integrated units, and they are exquisite. As we all know, Edsel Ford was a design genius, and his father was a jackass by the late 30s.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 27, 2021 2:16 am    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

Undis wrote:
Yes, the Autostadt W30 is full of mistakes.
Having said that, I don't want to be too harsh on it as well. After all we don't know how much reference material the builder had to go on. And we don't know what was the brief given to him by the VW museum. Likely they did not want a historically correct example but something that looks the part to most people. We see some examples of that philosophy in the museum's collection.


I think this plus budget and time constraints led to the autostadt car's inaccuracies
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 27, 2021 10:06 pm    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

I don't buy the idea that VW didn't intend for their replica to be correct. They built their car from scratch, just like Undis. If they had gone an easier route, like modifying a production beetle, I'd understand that the lines and proportions were off. But they built a wooden body buck and hand-hammered all the panels, supposedly by projecting and analyzing the museum's archival photographs. They had all the resources in the world. I think they just weren't careful and screwed up.

For many of us it was a huge disappointment. But looking back, I'm not surprised. Unlike passionate enthusiasts, like Undis, the VW Museum often shows the culture of a corporate bureaucracy--assignments are handed down, completed, and judged against a dispassionate rubric. The VW hierarchy probably saw their replica as success. It was splashed across magazine covers and got lots of press, and, as many have said, the public probably didn't notice the inaccuracies.

But as someone in the museum field myself, I think accuracy matters. I myself would like to see an accurate replica close up--to better understand the original VW program and the car's development. It's not just the obvious design features that count, like the suicide doors or the rearward view through the cooling vents. It's also important to see how early prototypes compare to finished products in subtler ways. Were the first cars smaller, sleeker, or more aerodynamic? Did practical concessions, or the rationalization for production, improve or degrade the final design? These aspects are important too, and only an accurate replica can speak to them.

Here are some photos I took in the museum in 2002. We were very hopeful then! This is a rough translation of the museum label:

"Wooden body buck for the VW30: In 1999, the firm Werner Zinke from Zwoelnitz in Sachsen constructed this model. It served as the basis for body working for the VW30. The sheet metal took its shape by hand beating over the model. The VW30 body is almost complete, needing only minor finish work for the finished car to be admired in the museum by the middle of next year. The weight of this wooden model is two tons, including the steel undercarriage."

Paul Rubenson

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2021 12:30 am    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

allsidius wrote:


If you imagine the headlight bucket removed completely from this excellent photo, you see the smooth fender underneath. Just like the shape of the V3/1, before they moved the headlights into the fenders.

It seems the fenders were converted as an afterthought, or was it part of Komendas scheme? One would think it would have been simpler to integrate the headlights from the beginning, like on a stock beetle.


In 1935 all of the four cars had their headlights placed inboard in the nose section. It was only in 1936 that one by one those cars were modified with headlights moved to the fenders with the convertible probably being the last one. However already in mid-1935 Komenda drew up some sketches of a size-reduced body as an exercise to make the car lighter (therefore cheaper) with its headlights in the fenders (page 42 of Barber's book). And this is before the last two bodies were even finished. In January 1936 another sketch was drawn up for the Type61 (separate to Type60) which was another attempt at size-reduced body which did not survive past sketch and calculations stage (page 98 of Barber's book). The Type61 also had headlights in the fenders. A lot of design features however were carried over form the stillborn Type61 to the regular Type60 W30. The headlights on the W30 were meant to be on the fenders right from the beginning and because they were using generic Bosch units that had to be mounted upright, a sizeable fairing was necessary to mount those units to the sloping fenders.
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2021 12:41 am    Post subject: Re: Reconstruction of the 1937 W30/26 Reply with quote

oldovaldriver wrote:
I don't buy the idea that VW didn't intend for their replica to be correct. They built their car from scratch, just like Undis. If they had gone an easier route, like modifying a production beetle, I'd understand that the lines and proportions were off. But they built a wooden body buck and hand-hammered all the panels, supposedly by projecting and analyzing the museum's archival photographs. They had all the resources in the world. I think they just weren't careful and screwed up.

For many of us it was a huge disappointment. But looking back, I'm not surprised. Unlike passionate enthusiasts, like Undis, the VW Museum often shows the culture of a corporate bureaucracy--assignments are handed down, completed, and judged against a dispassionate rubric. The VW hierarchy probably saw their replica as success. It was splashed across magazine covers and got lots of press, and, as many have said, the public probably didn't notice the inaccuracies.

Paul Rubenson


Thank you for the additional information. You make some good points there. As we know large corporation do as they please but for whatever reasons the final result in this case is not as good as could have been. I was told that the chassis of the W30/26 was offered to them but they were not interested. Logic suggests that a museum dedicated to a brand would jump at the chance to own the oldest surviving piece of their history, but no!
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