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Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968?
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Thoragaverung
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 7:52 am    Post subject: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

Hi, I'm going to look at a '68 this morning and I know it doesn't have a firewall. I'd like to put one in if I buy the bus.

Is it a simple matter to bolt one in, if I source one from a later bus, or are there factory brackets and lips and whatnot that would be missing from a '68 that would make the retrofit infeasible?

Thanks so much
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 8:35 am    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

you would need one from a 69 to 71.

physically it should fit. it may be missing the slots on the upper edge.

personally, a 68 being a first year bay has a lot of cool/odd features and i don't think i would do it just because it's kind of a cool oddity
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 8:41 am    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

I think 68's also lack the closeouts on each side over the fenderwells, not impossible to fabricate, but as Skills says it's part of what makes them unique.
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Thoragaverung
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 11:43 am    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

Thanks for the word!

Follow-on question, the 68's all have independent rear suspension, not swing axle, correct? I forgot to check the one I was looking at.

thank you,
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 11:54 am    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

Yes, it's just bugs that can have either.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 1:07 pm    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

I'd probably want to install a firewall. Two reasons, safety and noise control. You put some of that sound deadening foil mat on the front side of the firewall and I'm pretty sure you'd see a noticeable difference. Also seems to me that without a firewall there is no barrier between your gas tank with rubber hoses for fill and venting and your engine. Why would people say you should install your fuel filter outside of the engine bay and yet think having no firewall is anywhere near a good idea?

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 1:15 pm    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

I got the impression the OP was looking at a bus, not truck. Confused
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 1:24 pm    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

busdaddy wrote:
I got the impression the OP was looking at a bus, not truck. Confused


Me too, I just finished this 1968 truck though. Here's a 1968 bus pic from years ago

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Angus II
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 3:31 pm    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

Hello,
Finished?
And, someone didn't paint the tank hold down straps? Alright...
I won't ask about the air cleaner canister stand then.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 4:18 pm    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

Angus II wrote:
Hello,
Finished?
And, someone didn't paint the tank hold down straps? Alright...


You mean like this?

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Thoragaverung
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 5:21 pm    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

aeromech wrote:
I'd probably want to install a firewall. Two reasons, safety and noise control. You put some of that sound deadening foil mat on the front side of the firewall and I'm pretty sure you'd see a noticeable difference. Also seems to me that without a firewall there is no barrier between your gas tank with rubber hoses for fill and venting and your engine. Why would people say you should install your fuel filter outside of the engine bay and yet think having no firewall is anywhere near a good idea?


Yeah, I'd definitely want a firewall. Just checking on how hard it will be.

I suppose one must remove the engine, really, in order to get to it all and work over the fuel lines. Que cera, cera.

If I buy this bus I want it solid, I want it done right, I want front disk brakes and front seat belts with takeup reels. And I want a firewall! LOL.
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aeromech
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 6:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

Angus,
First.. kiss my ass. No that was when the bus arrived. If you want finished pics let me know.

To the OP,
Front disc brakes are tough. I recommend you install a brake booster.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 7:01 pm    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

I wonder how many split bus owners install firewalls. Are you concerned the gas tank will overheat being close to the engine? Maybe consider some airbags & power steering while your at it. Razz
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 7:27 pm    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

The owner of the 1968 DC pictured is planning on using the truck as a family car. He has a wife and 3 year old son. The idea of installing a firewall and modern seat belts appeals to him. Going crazy though with air bags and all the other modern crap is not in his game plan
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 10:28 pm    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

babysnakes wrote:
Angus II wrote:
Hello,
Finished?
And, someone didn't paint the tank hold down straps? Alright...


You mean like this?

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


Hello,
Well now, I do like your idea of finished and level of craftsmanship, babysnakes.
It's the details, that counts. Yet, a little out of context for this level of work...

Sorry, someone is butt hurt.
But, you're the one that said "I just finished this...". And, posted the before pictures, not me. I don't have a crystal ball or some tara cards, my friend. I'm no mind reader.

That would be like me posting a picture like this, and saying " I just finished this 68 911T"...
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

And, expect you to know it looked like this after I "really" finished 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.

Now, That's finished and ready for sale, my level of craftsmanship and flip in the day... Oh, and here is a picture of the street view(overflow). Notice, the 71 DC & Kombi in the background. I'm not new to this German air-cooled game. Just, slow on the new valuation of them...
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.
.

Oh, and to the OP, it's your bus. Do as you please. But, I would keep it stock, no firewall. But, I'm old school... it's only original once.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2021 3:49 am    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

consvws wrote:
I wonder how many split bus owners install firewalls. Are you concerned the gas tank will overheat being close to the engine? Maybe consider some airbags & power steering while your at it. Razz


Firewalls are good for sound proofing and segregation of flammables from heat sources. Bulkheads also add strength to the chassis. You can't foresee every contingency and not all contingencies would be covered by a firewall, but that doesn't make it a bad idea.

If you think it's an unnecessary precaution, then talk to the VW engineers who later decided it was a smart play.

I'll also be adding the front Y braces to the frame behind the bumper if I buy this bus. Again, if you think it's unnecessary, talk to VW.

Cheers
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Thoragaverung
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2021 3:58 am    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

aeromech wrote:

To the OP,
Front disc brakes are tough. I recommend you install a brake booster.


I saw a kit at Socal Imports, are they worth installing?

https://socalautoparts.com/product/no-hassle-wide-...9-bus-t-2/

I assume a brake booster was an option in 68, and would just bolt in up front? In my experince boosters make a car stop easier but don't do anything for stopping distances. maybe I could do both. Very Happy
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2021 6:09 am    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

I saw the bus yesterday. It's remarkably rust-free, especially for Minnesota, but needs a lot. I am toting up the parts costs now.

Why do rubber seal kits costs so darn much? LOL.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2021 8:26 am    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

Thoragaverung wrote:

Firewalls are good for sound proofing...

If you think it's an unnecessary precaution, then talk to the VW engineers who later decided it was a smart play.

I'll also be adding the front Y braces to the frame behind the bumper if I buy this bus. Again, if you think it's unnecessary, talk to VW.

Cheers


The fire wall acts like a drum, you’re gonna need to use sound deadening to quote it down.

VW was forced to put the fire wall there by the DOT for safety. Otherwise, I doubt they would have ever been installed.

The late bays do have the Y braces, but I think there it more to it then just the braces. I believe the whole frame was redesigned. Also, the y braces are only gonna do you good if you have a accident with a vehicle with the same bumper height.

Good luck on your quest.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2021 8:38 am    Post subject: Re: Is it possible to retrofit a firewall to a 1968? Reply with quote

Talk to vw about every other change they made then. Buy a 73 & up if you are worried. They are reinforced in the front & rear quite a bit. A 68 is like a tin can still. The firewall would be the least of my concern if I was thinking about safety. Too each his/her own, please show pictures of how you do it. I'm curious to see how you get it done.

Conrad
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