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My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle
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bobbybug
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2021 6:56 pm    Post subject: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

Finally Scored an all Original 1954 Euro Strato Silver and think I am just going to preserve this one. This Oval is Incredibly Solid so planning on updating interior and some parts to keep it as OG as possible. Made a call to Lenny Copp and interior has been ordered. Also placed a call to Wolfsburg West and parts list has been ordered. New seals, Running Boards, and a bunch more goodies etc.. More pics to come soon, looking forward to enjoying this one soon. Wink Cool
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janerick3
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2021 7:07 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

Nice score!

Are you preserving it or restoring it? I see a 99 percent original car, judging from the pictures.

Before you start replacing original German with new Chinese/Mexican/Brazilian, et cetera, consider whether the original parts can be refurbished or restitched before spending lots of money on "new and shinny [sic]."
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bobbybug
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2021 9:02 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

janerick3 wrote:
Nice score!

Are you preserving it or restoring it? I see a 99 percent original car, judging from the pictures.

Before you start replacing original German with new Chinese/Mexican/Brazilian, et cetera, consider whether the original parts can be refurbished or restitched before spending lots of money on "new and shinny [sic]."


I hear ya. I am reusing all of the original hardware, bolts etc. The seats were too weathered, torn stained, and faded so I am installing a Lenny Copp interior /headliner from West Coast Classics to freshen us the interior. All body panels, glass are OG. No rust in pans and heater channels. The goal is to keep it as original as possible Thanks
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janerick3
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2021 10:19 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

Couple of other things:

- Surprisingly little was carried over from 1955. Later stuff will fit, but isn't correct. Never assume correct replacement parts are available.

- Keep the original running boards; they will outlast anything sold today. CIP 1 sells the correct rubber BBT mats for them.

- Except for the hood molding, the trim is unchanged thru '66. Used original is still plentiful and better than anything currently available.

- Do not rip out the original vinyl; carefully unstitch to remove it. Your seats/door panels are in exceedingly good shape for a '54. If you don't plan to keep them with the car, someone else will want them for their preservation project.

- Your passenger side headlight appears 100 percent original, including the clear lens and sealed beam bulb. The driver's side lens has been replaced at some point. If it is a generic Hella lens from the late '50s/early '60s (doesn't have "SB19 SB20 SB21" across the face) and isn't pitted, 356 owners will pay stupid money for it. Repro '53-'55 lenses are available.

- Don't rely on photo features in VW magazines from the '80s and '90s for accuracy. Assume your car is 100 percent accurate and work backwards from there.

- Don't over-accessorize. Enough said.

- Nearly all U.S.-market Beetles sold after mid-1954 came with Ram Protection as an extra-cost option and is usually removed for that "vintage" look. There are advantages and disadvantages to keeping it. If you keep it, add a third brake light (critical). LED strips can be easily hidden from view.

- The pre-'56 vent wing handle assemblies are flimsy. Buy a '56-'64 handle assembly and swap handles by driving out the hollow pin.
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aa390392
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 28, 2021 8:35 am    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

How long have you owned this vehicle?

If not that long, I myself would take sometime and just appreciate exactly what you have, before tearing into it. It dosent look that bad. IMO, with pics you provided.

It appears to be a beautiful example of an untouched 1954 delux sedan.
(Why mess with it?)

You seem to have other projects you could be spending your firemans wealth on before this wonderful 54.

I have 3 ovals, and I think long and hard, before I do anything to them....

Dont be to anxious, theyve lasted this long without being fucked with.
Tomas
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ZENVWDRIVER
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 28, 2021 9:47 am    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

bobbybug wrote:
Finally Scored an all Original 1954 Euro Strato Silver and think I am just going to preserve this one. This Oval is Incredibly Solid so planning on updating interior and some parts to keep it as OG as possible. Made a call to Lenny Copp and interior has been ordered. Also placed a call to Wolfsburg West and parts list has been ordered. New seals, Running Boards, and a bunch more goodies etc.. More pics to come soon, looking forward to enjoying this one soon.


Ögood investment - looks pretty well preserved, to date- nice one - we all see things a little differently - i'd probably have kept that interior, but your replacement will be nice... '54s a nice year...

Ö we sold a 1950 11G in 1986 for $5K - the buyer, just preserved it for 25 years and then sold it for $40K - that new buyer restored it and resold it pretty fast for near $65,000 - you can't go wrong - have fun... like, your plan - z
_________________
5/50, pastel green 11G - SOLD
8/50, gray 11A Beetle
6/52, pastel green 11C - SOLD
11/4/52, black Zwitter - SOLD to my little bro.
1954 Porsche, pre A, with VW 36 horse- SOLD
1/54, black 11C Beetle - TRADED
2/55 Iceland green Beetle, on a 1965 pan
3/55 113 Beetle, stratos silver
1955 Messerschmitt KR175 - SOLD, sadly
1960 single cab
1962 SO33, with SO 42 interior
9/63 Pacific blue, Ghia
'87 Toyota MR2
'91 NSX- wishful thinking

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bobbybug
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 28, 2021 6:23 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

janerick3 wrote:
Couple of other things:

- Surprisingly little was carried over from 1955. Later stuff will fit, but isn't correct. Never assume correct replacement parts are available.

- Keep the original running boards; they will outlast anything sold today. CIP 1 sells the correct rubber BBT mats for them.

- Except for the hood molding, the trim is unchanged thru '66. Used original is still plentiful and better than anything currently available.

- Do not rip out the original vinyl; carefully unstitch to remove it. Your seats/door panels are in exceedingly good shape for a '54. If you don't plan to keep them with the car, someone else will want them for their preservation project.

- Your passenger side headlight appears 100 percent original, including the clear lens and sealed beam bulb. The driver's side lens has been replaced at some point. If it is a generic Hella lens from the late '50s/early '60s (doesn't have "SB19 SB20 SB21" across the face) and isn't pitted, 356 owners will pay stupid money for it. Repro '53-'55 lenses are available.

- Don't rely on photo features in VW magazines from the '80s and '90s for accuracy. Assume your car is 100 percent accurate and work backwards from there.

- Don't over-accessorize. Enough said.

- Nearly all U.S.-market Beetles sold after mid-1954 came with Ram Protection as an extra-cost option and is usually removed for that "vintage" look. There are advantages and disadvantages to keeping it. If you keep it, add a third brake light (critical). LED strips can be easily hidden from view.

- The pre-'56 vent wing handle assemblies are flimsy. Buy a '56-'64 handle assembly and swap handles by driving out the hollow pin.
thank you for the insight and words of wisdom. The driver seat was not good enough to be savedSo besides the interior Iím trying to keep everything else as original as possible looking forward to getting it all put back together and detailed. Thanks again for the information itís greatly appreciated
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olo
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2021 3:47 am    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

Great looking car. Iím with the others on repairing as much as you can, would be surprised how well you can clean, straighten door cards and repair og stuff if you are patient, if you are not driving often with passengers it will last long time , have fun 👍
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RandyV
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2021 7:01 am    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

janerick3 wrote:
Couple of other things:


- Your passenger side headlight appears 100 percent original, including the clear lens and sealed beam bulb. The driver's side lens has been replaced at some point. If it is a generic Hella lens from the late '50s/early '60s (doesn't have "SB19 SB20 SB21" across the face) and isn't pitted, 356 owners will pay stupid money for it. Repro '53-'55 lenses are available.


- Nearly all U.S.-market Beetles sold after mid-1954 came with Ram Protection as an extra-cost option and is usually removed for that "vintage" look. There are advantages and disadvantages to keeping it. If you keep it, add a third brake light (critical). LED strips can be easily hidden from view.

- The pre-'56 vent wing handle assemblies are flimsy. Buy a '56-'64 handle assembly and swap handles by driving out the hollow pin.


3 questions....

1.) How could you tell on the headlight lenses from these pics?? (I can't squint that hard) Laughing

2.) Interesting....what's RAM Protection??

3.) Learned something new today about vent wing handles! Wink

TIA
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ZENVWDRIVER
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2021 1:16 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

RandyV wrote:
janerick3 wrote:
Couple of other things:


- Your passenger side headlight appears 100 percent original, including the clear lens and sealed beam bulb. The driver's side lens has been replaced at some point. If it is a generic Hella lens from the late '50s/early '60s (doesn't have "SB19 SB20 SB21" across the face) and isn't pitted, 356 owners will pay stupid money for it. Repro '53-'55 lenses are available.


- Nearly all U.S.-market Beetles sold after mid-1954 came with Ram Protection as an extra-cost option and is usually removed for that "vintage" look. There are advantages and disadvantages to keeping it. If you keep it, add a third brake light (critical). LED strips can be easily hidden from view.

- The pre-'56 vent wing handle assemblies are flimsy. Buy a '56-'64 handle assembly and swap handles by driving out the hollow pin.




2.) Interesting....what's RAM Protection??



TIA


Answer "ram protection" is like the bumpers used on the USA type one bugs, beginning in late 1955 - you know, at the departure of the beautiful and simple Euro bumper style, without the (very ugly) almost worthless "towel bars" and much taller guards on late '55 through 1967.

Whenever we get a type 1, with ram protection bumpers we get a set of shorter, more handsome Euro guards and run them on our (to) '67 bugs - really improves the looks dramatically - z

our old '65 WITH ram protection >
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Ö and our 3/1955 WITH Euro style bumper ( for comparison)
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

_________________
5/50, pastel green 11G - SOLD
8/50, gray 11A Beetle
6/52, pastel green 11C - SOLD
11/4/52, black Zwitter - SOLD to my little bro.
1954 Porsche, pre A, with VW 36 horse- SOLD
1/54, black 11C Beetle - TRADED
2/55 Iceland green Beetle, on a 1965 pan
3/55 113 Beetle, stratos silver
1955 Messerschmitt KR175 - SOLD, sadly
1960 single cab
1962 SO33, with SO 42 interior
9/63 Pacific blue, Ghia
'87 Toyota MR2
'91 NSX- wishful thinking

All super-heroes, wear a MASK
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aa390392
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2021 2:27 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

Ram protection came standard on my May 55 import, me I prefer to keep it the way it rolled out of factory at if at all possible. Choice is up to each individual.
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bobbybug
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2021 4:00 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

Did some preserving of the luggage tray today and this 54 is solid!!!
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2021 7:32 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

Show off!

I wish that my 54 was that easy to make look better! 😜

My early March 54 has Ram Protection installed by the factory, so 54 is the first year it started. My February 55 had it as well. I like the towel bars. Seems like all vehicles have a solid bumper, but Bugs had the towel bars through the early years. I think it sets them apart from the rest of the pack. But I would also say that a Bug that did not have them from the factory, should remain without them.

Looking great! Keep making it yours!
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2021 9:05 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

RandyV wrote:
janerick3 wrote:
Couple of other things:


- Your passenger side headlight appears 100 percent original, including the clear lens and sealed beam bulb. The driver's side lens has been replaced at some point. If it is a generic Hella lens from the late '50s/early '60s (doesn't have "SB19 SB20 SB21" across the face) and isn't pitted, 356 owners will pay stupid money for it. Repro '53-'55 lenses are available.


- Nearly all U.S.-market Beetles sold after mid-1954 came with Ram Protection as an extra-cost option and is usually removed for that "vintage" look. There are advantages and disadvantages to keeping it. If you keep it, add a third brake light (critical). LED strips can be easily hidden from view.

- The pre-'56 vent wing handle assemblies are flimsy. Buy a '56-'64 handle assembly and swap handles by driving out the hollow pin.


3 questions....

1.) How could you tell on the headlight lenses from these pics?? (I can't squint that hard) Laughing

2.) Interesting....what's RAM Protection??

3.) Learned something new today about vent wing handles! Wink

TIA


1) The Hella logo is clearly visible at the top of the passenger side lens, which means it is pre-'64 VW. If the part number "E1.0671.01" is present above the VW logo at the bottom, it is mid-'56-'63. If a faint oval ring is present in the center of the lens, it is correct '53-'55. If both the ring and part number are missing, it is early '56. The driver's side lens appears to have two rows of part numbers curving across the bottom; this is generic '58-'63 Hella, same as used on 356s from that period. I do not see aiming lugs on either sealed beam lens, which means they are pre-'56.

2) As far as Ram protection goes, check the bottom of your spare tire tray for a rectangular plate that raises your spare so it doesn't get jammed between the overrider brackets. If it is present, your '54 most likely came with Ram Protection from the factory; if missing, it didn't.

Your '54 appears to have the luggage compartment rails, which were deleted late in August.

It must never have been driven hard, as nearly every '54 has fatigue-induced rust around the rear chassis mounts. Yours look pristine.
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bobbybug
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2021 9:44 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

janerick3 wrote:
RandyV wrote:
janerick3 wrote:
Couple of other things:


- Your passenger side headlight appears 100 percent original, including the clear lens and sealed beam bulb. The driver's side lens has been replaced at some point. If it is a generic Hella lens from the late '50s/early '60s (doesn't have "SB19 SB20 SB21" across the face) and isn't pitted, 356 owners will pay stupid money for it. Repro '53-'55 lenses are available.


- Nearly all U.S.-market Beetles sold after mid-1954 came with Ram Protection as an extra-cost option and is usually removed for that "vintage" look. There are advantages and disadvantages to keeping it. If you keep it, add a third brake light (critical). LED strips can be easily hidden from view.

- The pre-'56 vent wing handle assemblies are flimsy. Buy a '56-'64 handle assembly and swap handles by driving out the hollow pin.


3 questions....

1.) How could you tell on the headlight lenses from these pics?? (I can't squint that hard) Laughing

2.) Interesting....what's RAM Protection??

3.) Learned something new today about vent wing handles! Wink

TIA


1) The Hella logo is clearly visible at the top of the passenger side lens, which means it is pre-'64 VW. If the part number "E1.0671.01" is present above the VW logo at the bottom, it is mid-'56-'63. If a faint oval ring is present in the center of the lens, it is correct '53-'55. If both the ring and part number are missing, it is early '56. The driver's side lens appears to have two rows of part numbers curving across the bottom; this is generic '58-'63 Hella, same as used on 356s from that period. I do not see aiming lugs on either sealed beam lens, which means they are pre-'56.

2) As far as Ram protection goes, check the bottom of your spare tire tray for a rectangular plate that raises your spare so it doesn't get jammed between the overrider brackets. If it is present, your '54 most likely came with Ram Protection from the factory; if missing, it didn't.

Your '54 appears to have the luggage compartment rails, which were deleted late in August.

It must never have been driven hard, as nearly every '54 has fatigue-induced rust around the rear chassis mounts. Yours look pristine.
yes there is a plate in the spare tire well and also it does have the luggage rails. Both of the headlights have the faint ring in the center of the lens. I donít believe it was driven very hard because it was behind a wood shed stored for 35 years. Thanks for your information
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bobbybug
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2021 9:57 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

VW_Jimbo wrote:
Show off!

I wish that my 54 was that easy to make look better! 😜

My early March 54 has Ram Protection installed by the factory, so 54 is the first year it started. My February 55 had it as well. I like the towel bars. Seems like all vehicles have a solid bumper, but Bugs had the towel bars through the early years. I think it sets them apart from the rest of the pack. But I would also say that a Bug that did not have them from the factory, should remain without them.

Looking great! Keep making it yours!
thank you. Itís coming along pretty well. I think mine has the RAM protection as well . Will keep posting pics as progress is made
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bobbybug
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2021 10:06 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

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RandyV
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2021 11:01 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

Thanks all for the heads up above! Man I blink and this thread grew by 6 posts! Laughing

And nice looking popouts! You just install those? (Looked like solid rubber in the OP pics)

And yes that metal looks AMAZING indeed! Beatuiful luggage area and great job getting it very clean!!! Cool
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bobbybug
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2021 11:18 pm    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

RandyV wrote:
Thanks all for the heads up above! Man I blink and this thread grew by 6 posts! Laughing

And nice looking popouts! You just install those? (Looked like solid rubber in the OP pics)

And yes that metal looks AMAZING indeed! Beatuiful luggage area and great job getting it very clean!!! Cool


Randy Yes you are correct just installed the pop outs today . Euro bumpers and detailing the engine are on the short list of things to do. Thanks for the words of encouragement
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2021 9:06 am    Post subject: Re: My First 1954 Euro Strato Silver Oval Beetle Reply with quote

Nice to see the original trim on the B pillar and under the rear quarter windows. A lot of people when restoring their cars get trim wrong under the rear quarter window glass by not copying the diagonal section which joins the headliner piece for that factory look.
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