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August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration
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finster
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2022 12:05 pm    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

very nice!
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chickengeorge
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2022 12:11 pm    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

Puppy67 wrote:
chickengeorge wrote:
Puppy67 wrote:
I'm open to ideas, but 19" wheels, whale tails and 80's neon paint jobs are out!!!
.

Spoil sport.. Very Happy


Love your car and the work you put in to get the look "just right". Not easy.

Thank you!
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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 02, 2022 7:51 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

More metal going in. This time it's the kick panel strengtheners/door opening gusset or "lower cowl reinforcement panel" as Karmann called it.
It's all the extra bits like this that were obviously considered necessary when building the cabrios but many of the DIY cabrio kits ignored. Even with the way this car was before work started, the body still felt as stiff, if not stiffer, than some sedans I've been in.

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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2022 5:01 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

Left side also progressing nicely, but no pictures for you on that as (apart from having a hole for the footwell light) it's same again.

Instead, here's some progress on the gauges. I decided to rub back the paint test and got a cool "fake patina" look.

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That's the look I'll be going for on the car, but I kept it anyway and did the black on the reverse. It's actually a slightly grey colour to match the steering wheel (over a lightly textured finish). I think I prefer this.

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And the steering wheel.

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It's left over from my old type 3, which is now long gone. I fully restored it then it's just been hung on the wall ever since, so I may as well use it. The horn push has had the black paint in the centre polished off internally to give a kind of crystal effect. I like this look on its own, but it will also allow me to run a temperature warning lamp and shift lamp behind (super bright LEDs) while being otherwise hidden.

On the dirtier side, and it is pretty disgusting right now, the gearbox has come back with me to be cleaned up and refreshed as required.

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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2022 11:31 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

A fair bit has happened sincee the last update. It may look like we're getting close to the finish line, but believe me when I say looks are decieving.

We got the roof frame back on to check general condition and alignment of the frame and wood. A little work needed, but overall, we're happy.

In a bit of bad planning, the gearbox is currently being re-finished, the front beam is in pieces, and we were wanting the engine in to check fit. Ideally, to do this we needed the car back on the lift. So, we borrowed a beam and gearbox, got it rolling, then fitted the engine.


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With such extensive metal replacement, non-standard engine and a mix of panels we wanted to check clearances for the exhaust, engine seal, tinware, etc.
Huge relief, it's looking good.

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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2022 1:31 pm    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

Happy with the fit and clearance. we got the wings off, exhaust out the way, and the lightly tacked in panels were more solidly fitted.

Note, final welding is still a way off on much of the back end, just in case a bit of adjustment is required later.
Also, it's admittedly more fun making new progress than filling in between welds a bit at a time to avoid heat build up and warping.

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The eagle eyed will also notice different bumper mounting panels to the earlier test fits. We just weren't 100% happy with the pressings on the 1st ones so decided not to use them.
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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 14, 2022 9:29 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

Luckily, we had a body cut for this repair. Unfortunately, it didn't go forward quite enough to cover all the required repair, but it does leave an area that will be very easy to fabricate a patch for. Initial tacks done; next we're going to be starting on the long job of finish welding the rear end.

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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2022 10:38 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

Max at EVA Resto builds very nice beams (amongst other things).

I decided to go with one of his new 2" narrowed beams for a mild tuck (the Fuchs don't need more) which should work well with the CB Performance dropped spindles which are just getting cleaned and painted. He also supplied narrowed leaves, skid plate, and narrowed tie rods with new ends (not pictured). I've also cleaned up the trailing arms, powder-coated, and new German ball joints have been pressed in.

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Meanwhile, I've also finished the gearbox refresh. Mechanically it was pretty good anyway, having been rebuilt not long ago, but it looked awful.
As it was out, I replaced all the seals and gaskets anyway to be sure. The CSP disc brake caliper mounts just needed a light clean, while the axle tubes were acid treated for rust then epoxy coated in chassis black. The gearbox casing was stripped, acid etched, then grey epoxy coated (just for a change from black or bare metal). The new KYB GR2 shocks were also colour matched to the box.

New heavy duty genuine (grey) front and rear mounts plus mid mount kit were fitted (I may change snubbers from red urethane to HD rubber as I'm not a fan of urethane for noise and lifespan).

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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2022 11:25 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

The long, slow job of gradually completing the welds and then hammering/smoothing them is close to done.

A black guide coat was sprayed on just to give some protection and to see how it was going. It's not perfect, but bearing in mind there is no filler at all in this, we're pleased with the progress so far.

The early bumper mounts have also been removed ready for the correct ones to go on.

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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 21, 2022 11:44 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

We got the correct bumper mounts fitted then the wings bolted back on. We marked a few areas we weren't 100% happy with for a bit more dolly work, re-worked them, touched up the paint and feel it's looking better.
We also fitted the roof cable channel at this point.

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The heavy SSP stainless steel bumper fits like a dream - no tweaking or fiddling required, and shouldn't rust at the 1st sign of humidity either. These weigh at least double that of most repros (close to originals), so well worth the extra if your anywhere with less than perfect dry climate. The bumper brackets also lined up nicely in the middle of the bumper slots.

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autohaus
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 21, 2022 11:57 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

nice Job!!! Wink Wink Wink
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[email protected] 37
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2022 6:28 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

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It's crazy that Volkswagen doesn't paint the hidden parts
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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2022 8:11 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

autohaus wrote:
nice Job!!! Wink Wink Wink


Thank you, Very Happy

[email protected] 37 wrote:
It's crazy that Volkswagen doesn't paint the hidden parts


I think they were dipped rather than sprayed, and that area was obviously too well sealed to get paint flowing into during the process. Luckily that also means that area doesn't get the damp in to promote rust either. I didn't want to leave it to chance though, so plenty of paint is going into all of those little "hidden" areas during the rebuild.
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[email protected] 37
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2022 1:53 pm    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

Puppy67 wrote:
autohaus wrote:
nice Job!!! Wink Wink Wink


Thank you, Very Happy

[email protected] 37 wrote:
It's crazy that Volkswagen doesn't paint the hidden parts


I think they were dipped rather than sprayed, and that area was obviously too well sealed to get paint flowing into during the process. Luckily that also means that area doesn't get the damp in to promote rust either. I didn't want to leave it to chance though, so plenty of paint is going into all of those little "hidden" areas during the rebuild.


Good Idea...I have planned the same treatment
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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2022 1:26 pm    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

Lots of good progress made.

We got the new beam together and fitted, my gearbox in, and progressing well with the dry fit.
The front wheels now sit just right in my opinion. Personally, i'm not a fan of the super tucked look, skinny or super low profile tyres, or the ride/handling that any of them give you. For me, this works.

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The green front wing has a very slight flair on the rear lower edge that needs to be sorted.

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One thing that's been bugging us is that the fuel filler flap just doesn't sit right on the new front quarter, so that's going to get some work. I don't know if it's the new panel or the '68 only flap, but it just doesn't look right.
We did keep that section from the original front quarter, so that may be getting let in if we can't make the existing metal look/fit how we want it.

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Now that I've refurbished the jack, we might as well re-fit the bracket to hold it (forgot when doing the rest of the front end, so put it here to remind us).

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Happy with that, the wheels are now coming off for a refurb. I've got a few other wheels I can use in the meantime if I need to move the car.

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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2022 7:55 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

A while ago I stripped all the side glass from the frames. I then cleaned and polished the glass to get rid of minor scratches from age. It's all original VW marked, so that's nice.

The metalwork was also thoroughly cleaned and re- polished. It's not perfect, but certainly not bad enough to justify replacing or re-plating. I hadn't realised before, but this is chrome on brass for those who didn't know. The only metalwork replaced was the rear lifter channels as they were looking a little ragged.

I've just finished fitting fresh rubbers, felt, etc throughout. Not an easy job but it had to be done.

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Did I say fitting the seals wasn't an easy job (especially the quarter lights)!!!

Mentioning the quarter lights, the keen eyed amongst you may have noticed that these are the pre 67 windows and catches. Replaced or because this was so early for a 68 (1st week of August 67)? No idea, but I prefer them anyway so I'm definitely not changing them.
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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 6:29 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

Getting close.

We've got the windows in and roof woodwork being sorted as part of the final checks before being stripped for paint. Door seals are also being dry fitted at this stage to compress them a little and triple check the door gaps/alignment.

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Not quite the look I had in mind, but couldn't help being reminded of....


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finster
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 9:38 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

looking good, like the 'stance' and it's cantering to the final furlong
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 2:33 pm    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

finster wrote:
looking good, like the 'stance' and it's cantering to the final furlong

Thanks.

Hopefully that's most of the really hard stuff done. The roof itself may be a challenge, but there are enough resources around that it shouldn't be too bad. I won't be doing the body paint as that isn't in my skillset and I don't want to learn on this one. The floorpan, no problem, but the body...... I have someone much better than me lined up.
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Puppy67
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2022 5:23 am    Post subject: Re: August 67 (68 model) Beetle Cabrio restoration Reply with quote

We decided it was time for one last (OK, two more) photos before stripping for paint. Currently sitting on a pair of 4.5j Fuchs on the front with 145s and Porsche space saver rears just to keep it easy to roll, we rolled it out into the sunshine.

You can also see where the original fuel filler area has been let into the front quarter to replace the poorly shaped area on the new panel - now it looks and fits right.

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The '54 oval isn't mine unfortunately.
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