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My thing has only 4 lugs
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driftman11
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2016 12:26 pm    Post subject: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

I just purchased a 74 vw thing and realized it only has 4 lug bolt pattern wheels. I was hoping someone could offer some possibilities of how this is? I know the pan VIN shows it is truly a thing pan but that is all the info I know right now. Is it possible to just put beetle 4 lug drums on the thing without any other swapping out like axles etc? I really hoping I still have true THING suspension parts such as axles , flanges, cv joints, front beam etc....If not, it would look like I just bought a bug/ghia with a Thing body! lol I will update with anymore info I can find once I make it home today.
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GI Joe
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2016 2:57 pm    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

I'm not positiv, but I believe it's a Little more than just swapping drums... At least internal brake parts as well... I don't think it goes as far as replacing rear spring plates, or front beam....

Check and see if your front trailing arms are still Thing... And also the spindles... These are Thing specific.

A couple profile pics of the Thing may give a clue.... Wink
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driftman11
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2016 3:15 pm    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

ok I will see about getting some photos on here. I also will look at my parts better tonight and see if the beam is true thing part and if any of the rear parts have chassis numbers that match that of a thing.
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63ziggy
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2016 8:45 pm    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

Check the front beam to see if it has the additional supports that mount to the pan and shock towers. That will tell you if beam has been swapped. It is common.

as mentioned, spindles are thing specific. The ball joints point down on a Thing upper and lower arms. On a beetle. They point towards each other.

drums can be swapped easily back to wide 5. Not 100% sure if backing plates will interchange or if they were changed originally when someone put on 4 lugs.

post some pics and good luck
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driftman11
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 7:11 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

Alright after further review, I am 100% certain the front is original thing parts. The rear is lil more difficult for me to tell. I was not able to visually notice anything that would tell me it was original thing or swapped parts. I do see that it is the thinner 4 lug beetle drum on rear.
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63ziggy
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 7:48 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

does it sit lower?

it standard thing height, then someone for what ever reason did a drum swap. if sits about 3' lower, most likely beam swap and reindex. the rear suspension is generally identical with exception of transmission and CV diameter.
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driftman11
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 7:59 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

yea I think it sits stock height. I don't know how to load photos on here or I would. I'm going to say for some odd reason, they switched to the 4 lug drums with whatever method was easiest.
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driftman11
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2016 2:37 pm    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

Alright so is there a difference in the factory bump stops off a thing vs a beetle or ghia? I know my bumpstops look much beefier than the ones I see on beetle arms. mine has 2 stage look and the beetle ones are a single cylinder shape bumpstop.
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Wildthings
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 3:45 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

What kind of front brakes do you have. My guess is that someone upgraded the front brakes to disc using some combination of parts off of other VW rigs of the era.
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Bashr52
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 5:36 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

Does it look like this:

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


I'm running all stock thing components minus the front spindles (ghia) and rear disc kit. Everything is a direct swap.
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driftman11
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 9:22 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

well it is front and rear drums. the stance of the thing looks factory but then again the PO put 215/75/15 wheels and tires on it. The front end is completely factory minus the front drum. The rear looks to be factory with the exception of the drum as well. Now I haven't pulled the drum apart to find out if the inner brake parts are from something different. He put some very different looking wheels on it. If I had to describe them, I would call them like an old school version of the Blades wheels. they have the silver outer lip that covers the bead of the tire/wheel. They also have a weird center cap that screws onto a lil screw that protrudes out of the center. I haven't been able to find these wheels on anything. I have photos but I don't know how to upload them.

Brahre52- where did you get your bikini top for your thing? I am looking for a bikini like this because the cost of the convertible frame and soft top is just crazy expensive for my blood right now.
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driftman11
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 9:40 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

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


here is my first attempt to post photo. Thanks G.I Joe
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driftman11
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 9:41 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

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


Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.
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GI Joe
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 10:46 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

It looks relatively solid.... I see some remnants of a rear swing out tire carrier too....

Them wheels are strange, no doubt..
_________________
'74 Thing, "Our Thing"....Blue 181
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=4...p;start=60
'71 Beetle RPU
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driftman11
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 11:16 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

yes I want to find another rear swing spare tire holder. I wish the PO was still alive to provide me it. I know he had to have had it. His kids didn't know anything about it and sold me as it sat. I did spot a show bar 4 post roll bar in their yard that I got him to throw in along with the whole rear section of a 73 thing. I don't have use for it as my rear apron and truly rear corner panels are solid. I see some rust developing in my rockers, and on the lower windshield frame where it bolts to hinge that I will need to give attention to asap before it gets too bad to repair. All and all it was a solid find for $300. the engine is complete and rumor has it that it was running 6 months ago. I haven't had time to test that rumor yet.
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63ziggy
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 11:18 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

Thing shop sells the bikini top. You may consider the additional windshield supports. I believe they may come with top. Don't recall now. They have a couple different versions as far as color and texture of vinyl.

Front Thing drums are pretty common on The Samba classifieds. Rears are a little harder to find but out there.
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63ziggy
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 11:20 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

OK

Did I hear you right, $300 find for the complete Thing?

If so, you stole it and heck of a entry price will make it easier as you fix it up.
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Wildthings
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 11:29 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

Wow, that may be the best deal on a Thing that has been had this century.
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63ziggy
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 11:30 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

That ought to take care of the over inflation from Barrett-Jackson

not that I don't mind them driving my Thing's value up
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driftman11
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 11:31 am    Post subject: Re: My thing has only 4 lugs Reply with quote

Yes Sir. $300. I was quite surprised when they told me the price and I seen the condition. I expected to find a huge rust bucket with a partial engine.

As far as bikini top, do you need the convertible frame for the bikini to work? I don't want to purchase a $750 frame. YIKES! and when you talk about windshield frame supports, do you have a link to these? I'm not familiar with them.
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