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1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration
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Peter D.
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2018 6:36 pm    Post subject: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

I've owned a few air-cooled Volkswagen's but never had the time, money, or space to attempt a restoration project. This will be my first and I'm pretty pumped, even if my wife thinks I'm nuts. But for some crazy reason, the trucker, Luis, decided that Easter Sunday morning was a great day to deliver the car.

An unexpected wrinkle was that the wheel track on the Ghia is barely wide enough to straddle the the trailer. Luis needed my help to push it off (since it has no motor or brakes). At one point the passenger side front wheel fell off the track and it was dangling on three wheels. Shocked

Luis used his hydraulics to lift and tilt it back up and we were in business... except the car was crooked and there was no way to roll it back without it falling off the tracks again. After much back and forth maneuvering, we got it to the rear of the trailer.

Luis positioned a big empty truck tire on the street to catch the Ghia since it has no brakes. I also pulled a big piece of 1x12 lumber out of my shed to widen the on/off ramp. And it's a good thing I did because as I pushed the Ghia backwards with the trucker in the driver's seat, it flew backwards faster than I expected and slid sideways off the truck ramp and onto the wood. The wood broke in the middle but the car didn't fall to the ground. Yay, thank you Easter Bunny.

The whole time my snooty neighbors are driving by in their brand new Lexuses and Mercedes with horrified expressions. Anyway, Luis got the car from Washington state to Connecticut in seven days and in one piece. And believe me, no other shipping company wanted to deal with a 50 year old non-op VW.

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I kind of like the flames!

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I will be posting soon with a million questions and more pictures. I'm sure it's all been seen and done before on this forum so I'll try to keep it interesting. For instance, what is this crazy giant glob of foam in the right rear quarter?!

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Rome
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2018 12:47 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

It'll be nice to see another Ghia in CT.

The foam inside the right quarter panel is not factory-applied. Most likely it was to act as a space filler for a body repair to the lower section of the quarter panel. The battery was located on the engine compartment panel located to the right of the engine. Over the decades, it is likely that acid from the battery would drip down to the right of the battery, going down into that void and eating away the metal on the inner metal of the quarter panel (above and ahead of the bumper mount) as well as the outer metal of the panel.

In your first photo you can see that the bottom edge contour of the right quarter panel does not match that of the left rear quarter. The right bottom edge is curved downwards, indicating a repair using a generic rust replacement panel. The curve actually corresponded to that on big-bumper '72-'74 Ghias but is not correct for your body era. Normally the bottom edge contour is straight for several inches before curving up gently to the bottom of the taillamps which you can see is the case with the left quarter panel. The correctly-shaped replacement panels have only been available in the last ca. 8 years. Don't worry about it.

In the press photo below you can see the correct contour below the rear bumper. The contour on the right side bottom edge would be the same/mirror image.
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Do you already have an engine for it? Do you think you'll have it driveable by summer?
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2018 5:51 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

Time for the "Discovery" portion of the program!

I think your expanding foam is but step one of that discovery process.

VW didn't use foam in these cars, but they did in the Beetles with horrible long term results.

Anytime you see foam like that it almost always means that the body panel rusted away, the use of foam filled the void and leaves a hard surface that could be sculpted and made to look nice using fiberglass and body putty over the foam.

Sadly, where one finds a little rust, more usually follows.

It can be fixed, it may indeed possibly be more work than you expected but very few Ghias don't have a bit of rust.
When you do find one, it most often sells for many many large.

Have fun!
Please Keep us updated.

Dave
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Peter D.
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2018 8:08 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

Rome wrote:

In the press photo below you can see the correct contour below the rear bumper. The contour on the right side bottom edge would be the same/mirror image.


Awesome, thanks for the tip. I glanced into the left side and I'm pretty sure it's original German metal but I need to look closer to be sure.

I don't think the car will be on the road anytime soon! I only have one day a week to work on it and it pretty much needs a new everything.
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Peter D.
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2018 8:11 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

djkeev wrote:
Sadly, where one finds a little rust, more usually follows.

It can be fixed, it may indeed possibly be more work than you expected but very few Ghias don't have a bit of rust.
When you do find one, it most often sells for many many large.

Have fun!
Please Keep us updated.

Dave


Yep, I'm sure there's plenty more nastiness to discover but that's all part of the fun. Easter Sunday was not a great day to tear down and inventory the car but I hope to share more later this week.
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Peter D.
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2018 7:53 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

I finally got a chance to start taking things apart this weekend. Gas tank out, a few body bolts, the seats... didn't make much progress actually but my 11 year old son was really into it. He thought the floors were funny. And then winter came back and we pushed it into the garage.

The six bolts I got out were stubborn but surprisingly not rusted. Came out with hand tools.

My question is these door panels. The interior is toast and will be replaced but I didn't know it was possible to fit later style door door handle. Is this the wrong year door on a 64 or am I overthinking?

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And before I yank the carpets out (aftermarket and trashed), is there any reason to try to preserve the nasty padding in the rear parcel area and over the center wishbone? I've mostly seen that removed and replaced with modern sound deadening material.
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2018 10:51 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

Thats a replacement or later year door card. Look here to see what is a little more correct.
http://www.classicvws.com/ghia-1_interior.htm
here too.
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=198027
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2018 11:02 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

Yeah, I was just wondering if the door itself had been swapped out. I wasn't sure if the original door latch mechanism is compatible with a later style door handle and door card. Either way it's rotten so it's gotta go.

The West Coast Classics Restorations look amazing. If the final paint and body work comes out equally great I may go in that direction. But I'm getting way ahead of myself.
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2018 11:08 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

Just an FYI, lenny at WCCR can be expensive and slow, frustrating. And can produce nice stuff. Smile
I believe your door looks ok based on the upper trim, that stopped in 66. The lock/release in that location goes back to at least 65 or 64. Pretty sure 63 had the original lock on the long petite single release handle.
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2018 11:31 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

Great, thanks my year is a 64 so that makes sense.

Maybe I can sell those incorrect interior door handles for $5. That will pay for 1 square centimeter of a West Coast Classic interior! Laughing
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2018 12:13 pm    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

That will pay for the consult and a small Starbucks. Laughing
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 5:01 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

Well, I ran into my first head scratcher. I bought this 1500 motor locally and didn't pay too much attention to code and it's.... blank?!

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I looked it up on thesamba and I guess I have an exchange engine that was sold by VW as a replacement with "no identifying number stamped into the block." But I'm going to assume that "H" means it's a 1500. It came off a 68 Beetle convertible.

Right now the tin is missing the thermostat, flaps, and preheater tube which I've tracked down. I may also decide to put the right muffler and heater tubes on it. Those J tubes and that muffler might be worth a few dollars to someone.

My main question is getting a 1500 motor into a Ghia that originally had a 1200 motor. I posted an ad for a rear apron and someone responded and told me that what I need is a 1500 apron from a 1964 bus. That would be a perfect fit for a 64 engine bay so I wouldn't have any gaps.

Does that sound right?
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 5:14 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

There is an old thrad in the Beetle forums I participated in years ago about engines and identification.

When the engine number area is milled out like yours is in the photo, that IS a rebuilt engine....... at least a short block.

The installer was susposed to stamp the old engine number into it when they transferred the parts over....... but they often didn't.

Is yours a dual relief case?

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 5:54 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

Itís hard to see in the picture but thereís what I think is a VW recycling symbol before the H. So I think it was rebuilt and sold by VW.

Donít know if itís dual relief, Iíll have to check when I get home.

Still confused by this tear tin issue! Was a 1200 rear tin wider in the back or side to side?
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 8:11 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

Yes, it's a dealer rebuilt engine, my '63 Bus has one too, 1500cc:
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If you mean the rear breast plate tin, the tin that goes around the 2 heater tubes then this part is the same width on the outside edges, etc. as a 40hp piece.
It's wider inside itself so that it fits around the slightly wider 1500cc muffler heat risers (hope that makes sense).

63-66 1500cc Buses use that piece of tin, if you want a tin that also has the smaller hole for the pre-heat tube on the left-hand side.
This
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Peter D.
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 8:16 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

Yes, rear breast tin! That's what I meant. Thanks for the clarification.

Waiting for a response from a seller on this part.
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 10:57 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

When VW rebuilt them, did they add the Alternator?
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 11:05 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

Ha, I wish... no, I bought the motor locally from a guy who added the alternator, new carb, wires, etc. Just a refresh on an old motor. I don't have the budget to go whole hog on a rebuilt motor.

This one seemed like a good deal even though I need to find the right tins now.

I'm also debating about whether or not to put heater boxes on it. I will never drive my Ghia in the winter (I live in CT) but I might want heat at some point? Maybe in the fall weather or just for the sake of originality? The I would have to change the muffler too. This is getting expensive!
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 11:14 am    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

There is no reason not to run heater boxes on a 1500 SP, especially someplace it gets cold. I dont have heat but it would be nice on cool mornings and nights.
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 12:00 pm    Post subject: Re: 1964 Ghia Coupe Restoration Reply with quote

Peter D. wrote:
...This is getting expensive!

...and it's stillllll early Smile

Enjoy the ride. Six months after your'e done you will have forgotten how much you spent.

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