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VW Tractor Trailer (Mini)
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jcpatrickharrison
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 8:42 am    Post subject: VW Tractor Trailer (Mini) Reply with quote

Hey Guys. I'm making this post for a friend of mine named Ken Nethken. He has been working with VW's since 1963 and has made some pretty interesting stuff. Here is a Mini Tractor Trailer that he made from an old VW Single Cab. He designed and built it himself.

Many pictures! Let us know what you think!



1. In the Beginning there was rust! A 59 (Small rear window) single cab pick up, the beginnings of a small Semi!

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2. The basic layout is seen here, with a 1600 single-port engine, with dual carbs from a Type III, mounted backwards. The Transmission is from a VW Van circa 1964, with 68 bug axles, thus eliminating the reduction gear boxes and also reversing the rear drum rotation. The original doors were removed to be substituted with a set from a 1965 bus, as were the latching panels.

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3. Possum belly 32' trailer begins to take shape. The rear trailer axle is from a 1970 Cadillac El Dorado and the rear tractor axle is a tag axle.

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4. Driver's side view of a small rig shows spring loaded rear tag axle able to run out of track to better negotiate a turn without scrubbing tires on the pavement. After turning, the wheels return to their proper positions. Here you can also see the exhaust stacks, with NO muffler, which emit a strong Diesel-like sound.

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5. Tractor alone, showing tag axle and 5th wheel. The transmission shifter works similar to that of a Formulae V.

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6. Here is the completed Semi, with a close up of the Thermo King and ease of entry.

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7. Spacious interior, chandlier and wall sconces.

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8. Limited rear vision, but ease of entry due to smaller size.

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9. Watch the first step, interior attractions unlimited.

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10. Taking a break at a local truck stop, VW Tractor, Posseum Belly 27' trailer, with a total overall length of 32'.

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11. Other drivers pondering, what's it gonna be when it grows up??

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12. Basking in the evening sun, time for a wine and cheese break with a sweet damsel!

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13. Overall View

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14. Entry door on the driver's side, comfy interior.
King size bed located over the tractor drive wheels, Farah Faucett (??) helping display the trailer's fine focal point.

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16. At the local truck wash; fuel tank in the nose from Triumph TR4, set on it's end with it's chrome cap mounted top and center. The grille is a refrigerator shelf. Headlamps rescued from type III front fenders, rotated 90 degrees, and fog lights converted into turn signals. The front bumper formerly on a Type IV. Chroms step behind front wheels came from a motorcycle side guard. Wide drive wheels are N-50-15.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


17. This rig attracts girls! Close up shows cab running lights, from a 62 bug and the gas fill.

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18. Home on the open road, TV shown and fireplace further in rear out of view.

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brianhair
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 8:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's cool. Where is it now?
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fifty-five
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 8:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's a pretty cool ride. There is a lot of subtle work going on there. How does the rear tag axle work? any close ups of the completed rear?
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jcpatrickharrison
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you guys have any questions, please post them here, but I'll have to ask my friend to get his answers...
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timmaah
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 9:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jimmyjames wrote:
1600 single-port engine


Was top speed like 20 mph ?? How the hell did a 1600 haul that ?
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Gary
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 10:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Really cool, but IMHO it would have looked better without the redone nose.
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vwluver74
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 11:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i love it. my dad has a trucking business and he loved it too. i think it looks great. a lot of thought went into that. the only things i would have done different is a much bigger engine and i would have just left the original nose. did your friend have to go through weigh stations with it? what kind of brakes did it have? air, hydraulic? very cool, glad you posted it here Smile
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albert122
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 2:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow!!! Very Happy that is an awesome truck.. the parties i would have in that thing!!
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Air-Cooled Head
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 3:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The whole thing is awesome! I agree about the nose tho. That should have been left alone.

I have 3 questions;

1) How did a 1600 SP pull that trailer?
2) Where is the motor?
3) Were these pics taken in the 70's? Look at the people; long hair, bellbottoms. Even the pictures themselves look dated. The opening shots look like those of my brother & I when we were kids (60's).

But it's ubber-sweet, anyways! Cool
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HermanSwanson
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That has to be one of the coolest things I've seen in a while. I love flat-nosed semis... seems you don't see them anymore- semis all look the same...
Why did they paint it brown?
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vwluver74
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HermanSwanson wrote:
That has to be one of the coolest things I've seen in a while. I love flat-nosed semis... seems you don't see them anymore- semis all look the same...
Why did they paint it brown?


everybody buys conventionals now because they are just as light as a cab over.
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GeorgeL
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 7:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vwluver74 wrote:
HermanSwanson wrote:
That has to be one of the coolest things I've seen in a while. I love flat-nosed semis... seems you don't see them anymore- semis all look the same...
Why did they paint it brown?


everybody buys conventionals now because they are just as light as a cab over.


I believe that some states loosened their length regs too.

I agree that it would have looked better without the fake radiator, but I wasn't the one with the courage to build such a thing.
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vwluver74
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 7:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

GeorgeL wrote:
vwluver74 wrote:
HermanSwanson wrote:
That has to be one of the coolest things I've seen in a while. I love flat-nosed semis... seems you don't see them anymore- semis all look the same...
Why did they paint it brown?


everybody buys conventionals now because they are just as light as a cab over.


I believe that some states loosened their length regs too.

I agree that it would have looked better without the fake radiator, but I wasn't the one with the courage to build such a thing.


that to.
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volkswagenut
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2007 7:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

awsome rig. Wink alot of work went into that one. Shocked
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ovalboy
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Coming from the transportation industry, I think this is my favorite thread ever. Laughing It would be interesting to hear what happened to this thing.
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jcpatrickharrison
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Answers to your questions will be coming tomorrow!
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 2:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ovalboy wrote:
It would be interesting to hear what happened to this thing.


It would be quite cool to come across it stored in a barn at an estate sale. A little restoration and I'd achieve Alpha Dawg status at Havasu! Smile
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 2:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jimmyjames wrote:
Answers to your questions will be coming tomorrow!


Dancing Dancing Dancing Dancing
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EZ Gruv
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 8:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is awesome!
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Spezialist
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 8:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

PERFECT


1600 cc dual kads. Mid engine.
Tag axle free floats holding the weight.
Bet the guy still has it., in a garage.
Bet it doesn't weigh overcapacity of the drive train, therefore it does just fine ,like a regular bus "albeit" fully loaded.


Ken Nethken, you did a great job. Wink
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