Hello! Log in or Register   |  Help  |  Donate  |  Buy Shirts  See all banner ads | Advertise on TheSamba.com  
TheSamba.com
 
1973 Sports Bug Restoration
Page: 1, 2, 3, 4  Next
Forum Index -> Beetle - Late Model/Super - 1968-up Share: Facebook Twitter
Reply to topic
Print View
Quick sort: Show newest posts on top | Show oldest posts on top View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
CWAVE
Samba Member


Joined: September 18, 2008
Posts: 460

CWAVE is offline 

PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 11:12 pm    Post subject: 1973 Sports Bug Restoration Reply with quote

Well, thought I'd introduce myself and start a thread on my restoration. Been away from VW's for almost 20 years now, but it wasn't always like that. As soon as I could drive, I had Volkswagen beetles. Starting with my first car, a 1974 standard beetle, I went from that through numerous others including a 1972 Super and a 1973 Yellow Sports Bug, and a 1974 Street Baja. My favorite car of all those years was the 1973 Sports Bug, specifically the version that came in Saturn Yellow.

Call it my mid-life crisis project, I've decided for a couple reasons to build one of these up again for myself. The driving force however is to do a car restoration project with my son. Given the rarity of this particular model in the area I live in, I decided to start looking now for a project car, and related parts. The most difficult and potentially expensive parts I needed for this build were the sport seats, steering wheel and for me, the most important was a nice set of original ET26 Sports Bug wheels.

I started as many people do, searching the big forums, and putting out Kijiji ads. Amazingly within less than a month I got over 1000 hits on my kijiji ad, and within one week, managed to pick up, count'em TWO Yellow 1973 Sports bugs, and my luck didn't end there either.

The first was a car that I ended up driving 16 hours round trip two weekends ago to pick up in less than favourable Canadian driving conditions. Black ice, high winds, blowing snow and blizzard conditions made for 15 solid hours of white knuckle driving. In the end, I managed to make it home in one piece with my prize safely tucked away in my trailer. My wife didn't see the beauty, but then it's all in the eye's of the beholder isn't it.

The condition of the car outwardly looks rough, but upon closer examination so far, it seems to be primarily surface rust. There is some perforation in the rear fenders and body where the fenders meet, but not too bad. No doubt the holes will expand as I get into it. The floors are solid, and the heater channels aren't bad.

The plan however is a complete body-off restoration.

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


Two days after picking up what turned out to be my first of two Sports Bugs, I got a response from my Kijiji ad from a guy an hours drive out of town. Said that he had some 1973 Super Beetle parts that he needed to get out of his garage and shed (his wife was going to kill him if he didn't finally get rid of them). Offered to deliver the lot to me for the price of a case of 24. 2 hours later, $50.00 changed hands and I had a pickup truck loaded full of parts delivered to my door. It included lots of little things (switches, fans, brand new fuel sender and air filters still in the box, two perfect and complete doors, tail lights, gas heater just to name a few of the items). I was shocked as he continued to pull parts out of his truck when he pulled out a pair of 1973 Sports Bug front seats. WOW. They had been recovered, in a fabric I didn't care for, but none-the-less were sports bug seats. I couldn't believe my luck.

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


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


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


Seems that my luck was on a roll as 5 days later, I was invited to another fellow's house to take a look at a stripped down shell of a "Yellow" bug. His description when talking to him on the phone sounded suspiciously like a Sports Bug, and photos he sent to me before going over confirmed it. He had a 1973 Yellow Sports Bug for sale. The catch however was that he had stripped it down last summer... and I mean stripped it down. What remained looked like he had tossed a grenade in and run for his life!

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

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


When I got there this past Sunday, I found that he had the body shell frozen to the ground on his front yard surrounded by 2 feet of snow. The pan (without engine or tranny, and the CV's cut through with a torch) frozen to the ground beside his house, and the rest of the parts strewn around the yard and under his deck. Examining the devastation, I discovered a flawless Sports Bug Steering wheel still in the shell (and I mean FLAWLESS). The pan had four ET26 rims on it with very minimal surface rust. The paint on the rims still had the original sheen to them when the dirt and mud was wiped away. Two sport sets in quite reasonable condition rounded out the OEM Sports Bug parts. Sadly the spare was nowhere to be found (although he suspects that it might be at his parents farm still in his trailer). Hoping to hear back from him in the coming weeks for that piece.

The body panels (hood, deck lid, doors and fenders) were virtually pristine. One of the rear fenders has a slight dent, but overall, they're all perfect parts. It was recommended to me by a long-time pal that I should restore original parts where I can rather than picking up replacements, as the OEM parts were better steel and fit much better.

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


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


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


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


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


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


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


So, this is the start of my story. Let's see how it all ends! I plan on enjoying the journey to bring an old friend back home and into the life of my family.
_________________
___
My 1973 Sports Bug Body off Restoration:
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=666556


Last edited by CWAVE on Wed Jan 22, 2014 12:05 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Gallery Classifieds Feedback
Walking Contradiction
Samba Member


Joined: August 14, 2013
Posts: 452
Location: Oregon, OH
Walking Contradiction is offline 

PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 11:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This looks like it's going to be a good build! I'll be watching.

-Sam
_________________
Orange Bug 1974 Super Beetle

Member of the Greater Toledo Volkswagen Club
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Gallery Classifieds Feedback
vernonc
Samba Member


Joined: April 23, 2012
Posts: 623
Location: Parkersburg, WV..yes, I sold the boat
vernonc is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome and 'thank heavens for mid-life crisis'! Laughing

Wishing you good luck on your build.

mort
_________________
"Those who don't read newspapers are un-informed. Those who do read newspapers are mis-informed." Will Rogers

'69 sedan, low mileage, all original.....currently being 'freshened-up' for road trips and daily driving...just not every day

Freshening-up link http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=617386
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Gallery Classifieds Feedback
ROCKOROD71
Samba Member


Joined: January 18, 2012
Posts: 2770
Location: Boston, MA
ROCKOROD71 is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 6:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

it's early but you're in the run for Fatchick score of the year! So...you gonna make two then or what? Curious about the plan for the racing stripe, are you going to try and get it reproduced or painted or...?
_________________
1971 STD BEETLE- DD-1st car, 1st love. keepin' it stock! 1600DP, Solex 34-3 Mexi Bosch SVDA Dist NOW w/POINTS
1977 WESTY "KrustyKamper" 2L FI
79SuperVert wrote:

30 years from now, the next guy may not want your girlfriend, but he may want your classic car, depending on how nice you were to it.


asiab3 wrote:

Careful guys, a petulant child can grow up to be president these days.


**winter drivers: no survivors!**rust warrior**#keepbodyshopsbusy**
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Gallery Classifieds Feedback
RidinRetro1973
Samba Member


Joined: April 10, 2007
Posts: 583
Location: Bartlett, IL
RidinRetro1973 is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 9:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Will be watching this. I love Sports Bug builds.

My Bug is a sports-lookalike.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

_________________
Instagram - ryankschulz
My builds:
'72 1302S "No Pulp"
'68 AutoStick "Gawaine the Green Knight"
'79 Westy FI Poor Performance, Help?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website Facebook Twitter Instagram Gallery Classifieds Feedback
VolkswagenVMan
Samba Member


Joined: September 25, 2003
Posts: 186
Location: Valparaiso , Indiana
VolkswagenVMan is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Should be a fun build, can't wait to see it finished.
_________________
Master Tech at Team Volkswagen
VW's at work , VW's at home!!!!
1967 EMPI GTV
1966 Bug early
1966 Bug late
2000 New Beetle 2.0l 200,000 miles and going!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Gallery Classifieds Feedback
CWAVE
Samba Member


Joined: September 18, 2008
Posts: 460

CWAVE is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks everyone for your comments. Can't wait to get started...

But to the question of what to do with the second one. Been giving that some thought since last Sunday (I know, not much time has passed since then), but the body of the second "shell" isn't really that bad, and we didn't tweak the a-pillars as much as I expected we would hauling it out of his place, so I'm seriously considering doing two restorations. I'm just loathed to kill an original 1973 Sports Bug just to gut it for some parts. It seems wrong.

Was wondering what you guys think? Do you think that shell looks too far gone to bother? Granted it's pretty stripped out, but I did get all the body panels. It would need an engine and tranny, but that's not too hard to source.

And to the question about the stripe. I have an old friend in Ontario currently working on his own 1973 Sports Bug restoration. Was just talking to him last night about the stripe. He tells me he knows of a guy who's made an authentic reproduction stripe. Plan on buying that and putting it on the finished car. Back in the 80's I wasn't a fan of the stripe, but now it seems like the right thing to do.

ROCKOROD71 wrote:
it's early but you're in the run for Fatchick score of the year! So...you gonna make two then or what? Curious about the plan for the racing stripe, are you going to try and get it reproduced or painted or...?

_________________
___
My 1973 Sports Bug Body off Restoration:
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=666556
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Gallery Classifieds Feedback
19super73
Hardcore Stock Nazi


Joined: October 18, 2007
Posts: 4335
Location: Cité Soleil
19super73 is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 12:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The first one you grabbed, came from SK right? Did he come down on the price?
_________________
1970 Campmobile
1970 Fastback 1600 TL
1971 Doka
1973 Super Beetle
1973 Westfalia
1974 412 Variant
1975 La Grande Bug

Tram wrote:
It's like shaving your nose and mouth and filling it in because it looks cool, then running a tube from your trachea to your asshole for air. You'll be breathing your own farts.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Facebook Gallery Classifieds Feedback
ROCKOROD71
Samba Member


Joined: January 18, 2012
Posts: 2770
Location: Boston, MA
ROCKOROD71 is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 12:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Could just take everything you need and sell off the shell and spare parts when you're done to recoup some of your money. Unless you want two bugs, then I say go for it. Maybe a driver without all the rare add-ons?

Either way you'll be busy for a while now!

Ridinretro_ love your car, looks great!
_________________
1971 STD BEETLE- DD-1st car, 1st love. keepin' it stock! 1600DP, Solex 34-3 Mexi Bosch SVDA Dist NOW w/POINTS
1977 WESTY "KrustyKamper" 2L FI
79SuperVert wrote:

30 years from now, the next guy may not want your girlfriend, but he may want your classic car, depending on how nice you were to it.


asiab3 wrote:

Careful guys, a petulant child can grow up to be president these days.


**winter drivers: no survivors!**rust warrior**#keepbodyshopsbusy**
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Gallery Classifieds Feedback
VolkswagenVMan
Samba Member


Joined: September 25, 2003
Posts: 186
Location: Valparaiso , Indiana
VolkswagenVMan is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 12:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would build them both!
_________________
Master Tech at Team Volkswagen
VW's at work , VW's at home!!!!
1967 EMPI GTV
1966 Bug early
1966 Bug late
2000 New Beetle 2.0l 200,000 miles and going!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Gallery Classifieds Feedback
CWAVE
Samba Member


Joined: September 18, 2008
Posts: 460

CWAVE is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 1:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, the first one did come from SK, and also down on the price. The pictures he had on his listing looked pretty rough, but was pleased when I got there to discover it was as he had stated, pretty solid. I think it'll be a good platform for a restoration.

I think I'm going to move ahead and start the restoration on the second car/shell first. Cut my teeth on it first so to speak.

What I'd like to do is restore the body and pan, paint it and get it back together. I'll use the complete car as a reference in putting the second one back to rights. Then I'll restore the first.

I live in your typical subdivision, so space is at a premium. Think I'll get the body and pan in the garage soon and see where I'm at.

The plan in time will be to give one of these to my son as his first car. That'll leave me with one as well.
_________________
___
My 1973 Sports Bug Body off Restoration:
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=666556
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Gallery Classifieds Feedback
djkeev
Samba Moderator


Joined: September 30, 2007
Posts: 23606
Location: North West New Jersey
djkeev is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 2:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ambitious!
Best of luck to you......

Do you want another one?
I found this last Fall.......

I let it go to the scrapper....... My wife in no uncertain words said "no way... No how!" And she's a big fan of old VW's!

Oddly, it had a perfect uncracked dash in it!

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


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


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


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

_________________
Stop Dead Photo Links how to post photos

Ghia
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=392473

Vanagon
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=6315537#6315537

Beetle
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=482968&highlight=74+super+vert
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Gallery Classifieds Feedback
CWAVE
Samba Member


Joined: September 18, 2008
Posts: 460

CWAVE is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 2:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow, now that makes me sad. How could someone have treated that car so poorly... Hopefully someone saved the dash and bumperettes. I'm on the hunt for those (bumperettes).

djkeev wrote:
Ambitious!
Best of luck to you......

Do you want another one?
I found this last Fall.......

I let it go to the scrapper....... My wife in no uncertain words said "no way... No how!" And she's a big fan of old VW's!

Oddly, it had a perfect uncracked dash in it!

_________________
___
My 1973 Sports Bug Body off Restoration:
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=666556
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Gallery Classifieds Feedback
djkeev
Samba Moderator


Joined: September 30, 2007
Posts: 23606
Location: North West New Jersey
djkeev is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CWAVE wrote:
Wow, now that makes me sad. How could someone have treated that car so poorly... Hopefully someone saved the dash and bumperettes. I'm on the hunt for those (bumperettes).

djkeev wrote:
Ambitious!
Best of luck to you......

Do you want another one?
I found this last Fall.......

I let it go to the scrapper....... My wife in no uncertain words said "no way... No how!" And she's a big fan of old VW's!

Oddly, it had a perfect uncracked dash in it!


If I had only known......... I was offered the car......
But with two Ghias, one Beetle and a Vanagon...... Um... No thanks!

Dave
_________________
Stop Dead Photo Links how to post photos

Ghia
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=392473

Vanagon
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?p=6315537#6315537

Beetle
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=482968&highlight=74+super+vert
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Gallery Classifieds Feedback
Rome
Samba Member


Joined: June 02, 2004
Posts: 5942
Location: Pearl River, NY
Rome is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 5:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

SportsBug- my favorite late Beetle, though I never owned one. Your second one looks like the entire heater channel is gone, and when you brought it home with the body strapped to the chassis, the front edge of the door opening jutted forward!

But kudos to you to decide to save both SportsBugs.

For your enjoyment here's one from NJ which I've admired at many meets; this shot from 2005-
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.




In the late 1980's there was a Marathon Blue SB for sale at a local gas station. Was only $300, complete and registered, but it was really rusty. I passed on it. Then in the early 90's there was another Marathon blue SB in a big junkyard here in the county (long since shut down). I just realized it's possible it was the same one I saw in the 80's. It was perched atop another car, and it had some pristine original front seats which I really wanted to remove. Since the pan was pinched upwards from rust and sitting on the other car, I could not easily move the seats. I was about to whack the bottom rear leg of the seat frame to move the seat forward when I heard alot of buzzing. Crap- there was a bee's nest in the front fenderwell! Nuts- I had to scram and leave the seats (and the whole car) behind.

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/archives/lit/73sportsbug/page5.jpg
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Gallery Classifieds Feedback
mascrappo
Samba Member


Joined: January 11, 2012
Posts: 533
Location: New Mexico
mascrappo is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 5:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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


Thanks for saving them. I drive an unrestored Sports Bug, no radio, no bumper guards, no stripe. The lady that bought new said she had no money for any options and bought it a cheaply as possible. Still has its first oil change sticker on the door in 1973 from VW Dealer.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Gallery Classifieds Feedback
Rome
Samba Member


Joined: June 02, 2004
Posts: 5942
Location: Pearl River, NY
Rome is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 5:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
unrestored Sports Bug

What a find! Does your car still have the black taper-tip exhausts?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Gallery Classifieds Feedback
CWAVE
Samba Member


Joined: September 18, 2008
Posts: 460

CWAVE is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 7:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You are right, the front of the door opening is jutted forward. The pillar on either side of the windshield doesn't appear to be kinked, so I think it's still saveable.

My immediate plan is to clear some space in the garage, and get the pan and body into my heated garage. I'm going to restore the pan right away. Once that's done, then I'm going to attach the body at the front and back, fit the heater channels in with the body on the pan, and deal with the door alignment. Since the heater channels are gone, I have not reference for body alignment.

Plan to take measurements off the old pans as to bolt locations, cut the old pans out, and install the new ones so the holes line up. Mounting the body then front and back on the pan should get me somewhat close.

I'll then install the heater channels, and get the doors aligned. With the heater channels bolted in and doors properly aligned, I'll then weld in the channels.

This is the path that my good friend recommended I take... Not my idea but sounds to me like a sound plan.

I'm confident that I'll be able to get this second shell lined up again.
_________________
___
My 1973 Sports Bug Body off Restoration:
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=666556
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Gallery Classifieds Feedback
mascrappo
Samba Member


Joined: January 11, 2012
Posts: 533
Location: New Mexico
mascrappo is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 8:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rome wrote:
Quote:
unrestored Sports Bug

What a find! Does your car still have the black taper-tip exhausts?


Sadly, no. Exhaust had been changed some time in the past 40yrs, I sinced installed a Tri-Mil. The selling point for me was how unmolested this car was, original everything, and having a little background from original owner.

This car is no show winner, but is straight, a dependable driver, and has original Volkswagen carpet floor mats! LOL

I would love to restore it like CWAVE plans to do his.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Gallery Classifieds Feedback
CWAVE
Samba Member


Joined: September 18, 2008
Posts: 460

CWAVE is offline 

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 8:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're very welcome. I'm looking forward to the restoration. I know the first running car I have will be quite easy to restore, as it's straight and has good bones. The second one is in it's death throws, and am anxious to revive it.

Once I get the pan restored, and the body on and aligned I'll breath a sigh of relief! When I picked up the car last weekend I had no plans to save it... but now as my thoughts on it evolve, now I'm on a mission to bring it back to the living and driving.

Your ride is something to be very proud of. It's a terrific sports bug, and knowing the history on it makes it all the better! Great car, thanks for sharing it and your story!

mascrappo wrote:

Thanks for saving them. I drive an unrestored Sports Bug, no radio, no bumper guards, no stripe. The lady that bought new said she had no money for any options and bought it a cheaply as possible. Still has its first oil change sticker on the door in 1973 from VW Dealer.

_________________
___
My 1973 Sports Bug Body off Restoration:
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=666556
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Gallery Classifieds Feedback
Display posts from previous:   
Reply to topic    Forum Index -> Beetle - Late Model/Super - 1968-up All times are Mountain Standard Time/Pacific Daylight Savings Time
Page: 1, 2, 3, 4  Next
Page 1 of 4

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum

About | Help! | Advertise | Donate | Premium Membership | Privacy/Terms of Use | Contact Us | Site Map
Copyright © 1996-2018, Everett Barnes. All Rights Reserved.
Not affiliated with or sponsored by Volkswagen of America | Forum powered by phpBB