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My first Thing ('74)
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Yarkle Premium Member
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Emeritusx wrote:
Yarkle wrote:

OR, you could buy a set of the original VW ones that fit on top of your door hinges with longer screws. Apparently, alot of the 73s had them as a later accessory so you could have the mirrors when you went doorless


How would you take off the doors?

I need to get my mirror situation resolved, that RV mirror looks kinda stupid..


the doors just lift off of the hinges after you push in the tabs. The extensions dont interfere with door removal.
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waxhead
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 2:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ian - thanks for the explanation. That explains the rust. Doesn't seem like a very good design though.
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Mike B.

1976 Porsche 912E #1047
1974 Thing
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Pierre G
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 3:31 pm    Post subject: Re: My first Thing ('74) Reply with quote

waxhead wrote:

My plan is to return it to stock, keep the original paint where possible, get it roadworthy, maybe lower it.


Just my 0.02, but don't lower it. A Thing might be the only VW that looks ugly (and odd) lowered. Someone here wrote that lowering a Thing is like raising a Miata...and I agree. Then, it's your car and you'll do what you want, but you'll enjoy it better stock (or raised), than lowered.
X2 on the Thingshop hinges to solve your side mirrors problems.
About the antenna hole, as on all VWs, they were dealer (or owner) installed, so not only one antenna style, and not only one location, but multiple possibilities...
Thanks for saving another Thing and good luck.
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1976 181/Thing (daily driver), 1967 fastback, 1973 squareback, 1964 microbus, 1967 Double Cab, 1969 westfalia (currently under resto), 1972 westfalia, 1978 westfalia, 1972 LM1C dune buggy, 1974 jean's bug, 1974 1303 (super beetle, currently under reassembly after new paint) + 2 semi wrecks 181 (1971 and 1972)...
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norcalmike
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 6:49 pm    Post subject: Re: My first Thing ('74) Reply with quote

Pierre G wrote:

Just my 0.02, but don't lower it. A Thing might be the only VW that looks ugly (and odd) lowered.


i think they look great slammed, stock, or raised. to each his own
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waxhead
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2010 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Making a little bit of progress on this. Got a set of seats for it (thanks Booch). Got the top frame painted and ready for a new top. Currently rebuilding the front beam - new ball joints, tie rod ends etc. Painted the pans with POR-15 today. I'll 'glass over the holes in the rear area - don't think they're bad enough to justify welding in new pan halves. I still have to coat it with Chassis Coat black which will knock the shine off it.

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Mike B.

1976 Porsche 912E #1047
1974 Thing
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booch
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2010 7:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looking good Mike, glad to see this thread come back into action.

That gloss is blinding!
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mikeyj007
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2010 8:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looking good. Love to see pictures and hear about the front end rebuild. Mine will need it at some point.
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waxhead
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 14, 2010 12:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mikeyj007 wrote:
Looking good. Love to see pictures and hear about the front end rebuild. Mine will need it at some point.


I'm putting a Beetle beam on it, to lower it, but I'm sure the procedure is similar.

BTW, the beam I have looks like it got hit (bent) at some point, and was straightened again (I put a log steel ruler against it and it appears to be straight). One of the top control arms was bent too, and I've had to replace it. My question is - do I go ahead and use this beam, or toss it and look for a better one?

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Mike B.

1976 Porsche 912E #1047
1974 Thing
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waxhead
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PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 8:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I decided to find another beam and have that narrowed. Didn't want to spend any money on the one that might have issues with it (see above).
I sent the beam to Michael Womack - Womack Suspension Werks in Greesboro, NC (http://www.thesamba.com/vw/classifieds/detail.php?id=791959) to have it narrowed by 2 inches, and also to have adjusters installed. He also shortened the torsion leaves, and both tie rods.
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Some other stuff I did over the winter - rebuilt the carb:
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And after cleaning and rebuild:
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I also rebuilt the distributor, using a Bosch rebuild kit, new cap, rotor, points, condensor and vacuum.

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1976 Porsche 912E #1047
1974 Thing


Last edited by waxhead on Mon May 16, 2011 12:18 pm; edited 1 time in total
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waxhead
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PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Picked up a pair of NOS wiper blades - SWF brand. Can't beat NOS parts!
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Mike B.

1976 Porsche 912E #1047
1974 Thing
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waxhead
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PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 8:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cleaned up the engine bay.
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Mike B.

1976 Porsche 912E #1047
1974 Thing
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waxhead
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 06, 2011 7:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Made some real progress over the Memorial Day weekend. Got the body off the floorpan/chassis. Working on my own, which was kind of awkward, but worked out fine nonetheless. Took the wheels and hubs off, lowered the chassis onto 2 furniture dollys, then pulled it out from under the body. I took off the fan shroud to give myself some additional clearance.

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Pulled the engine, and the swing axle trans. Got the Bug trailing arms ready to go on, with new inner and outer bearings, grease seals etc.

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Took off the front beam and then flipped the floor pan up on its side. It's in pretty good shape - couple of small holes around the battery area which I will fix at a later date. Using a wire wheel (or three) and drill, I removed the surface rust, then gave it a coat of POR 15. While it was still a little tacky I sprayed it with a semi-matte black paint.

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That's how it sat for the week - luckily it didn't rain all week. This past Saturday I went at it again. I needed the get it back into the garage, so I put the (Bug) trailing arms on, just temporarily for now. I'll take the body off again at a later date, to get everything torqued down, finish painting the rear frame horns, put on the body-to-floorpan gasket etc. All that stuff is so much easier with the body off. The rear torsion bars and spring plates went on without too much trouble, and they seem to be level and at about the right height that I want, although without the engine or trans there is no point yet in trying to get that figured out.

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Sittin' a little high at the front, with the stock beam(!) Didn't have time to install the narrowed Bug beam, so that's how it will stay for the time being. Rear wheels are just to get it rolling - as soon as I can afford to buy tires, I'm putting Porsche cookie cutters on it. Fairly pleased with myself however - it finally looks like it's coming together!!

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1974 Thing
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Van-go108
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 06, 2011 10:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

GREAT JOB. Cool
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Semper_Dad
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 06, 2011 11:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Van-go108 wrote:
GREAT JOB. Cool


Agreed, but if I was tearing it down to the level you did I would have fixed the floor. Keep up the good work though
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74 VW Thing - Walküre
78 GMC Motorhome - Valhalla
"Patina" my ass, that's rust
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World 181 Registry Map:
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Officially, there are only 112 181s in the world
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Van-go108
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 06, 2011 11:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

True.... nows the time to do it. Wink
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waxhead
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 7:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been very slowly chipping away at this project, got the front beam assembled and ready to go on, found a really nice used top (olive green) that I need to install, and got tires mounted on my 6x15 cookie cutters.

I decided to tackle cleaning the fan shroud this weekend - I sprayed it with oven cleaner, put it in a plastic bag and let it sit over night. My intention was just to de-grease it, but after power washing it, I realized the oven cleaner had stripped off the paint too!

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The back of the shroud has been cut a little, by the doghouse cooler, so I'll have to get that fixed.

It's coming up on 3 years since I started this project, my latest goal is to have it driving this summer - time will tell...
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Mike B.

1976 Porsche 912E #1047
1974 Thing
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waxhead
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 7:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Got the front beam on - I though it would sit a little lower, but I think the adjusters are set to their highest, so I should be able to go about 2 more inches lower.
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1974 Thing
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GodJockey
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 11:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looking good! How many notches did you lower it in the rear and whats the tire combo?
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waxhead
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 9:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks!

Front:
Adjustable bug beam, narrowed 2 inches, with ghia spindles/discs. Tires are 145/65/15 on 1973 Porsche 6x15 cookie cutters.

Rear:
Rear suspension is also from a bug. Turned two inner clicks. I don't have the cookie cutters on the rear yet, but I am planning on putting a 185/65/15 tire on them.
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1976 Porsche 912E #1047
1974 Thing
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waxhead
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2013 7:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Putting the rear brakes back together at the moment. I think I got everything installed correctly(?) Hand brake cable is not yet hooked up:

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1974 Thing
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