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First Drives?
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BorisGrishenko
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 11:09 am    Post subject: First Drives? Reply with quote

I've been considering a beetle for ages, as I've wanted one my whole life, and I'm close to ready to hunt one down and get it - but there's one catch, I have never driven one and that's my one big hesitation. What's the best way to get behind the wheel for a few minutes and make sure it's not best left as a dream? I don't currently have any friends who have one and just moved to my new area.
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KTPhil Premium Member
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 11:12 am    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

Search the club listings here and see if there is one nearby.
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewforum.php?f=16

A search with "oklahoma" yields this:
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/search.php?search_keywords=oklahoma&search_forum=16

Using your city or county name might narrow it down.
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BorisGrishenko
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 11:13 am    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

Nice, thank you! I'm relearning the site, it's been years since I logged on.
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67rustavenger
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 6:09 pm    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

Boris,
I like KYPhil's idea to contact a local club and see if you can get a ride along. Or maybe, a kind club member will let you drive his car. That would be a plus.
If you were local to me. I'd let you drive my 67. It's an easy driver. Considering, mine is a resto-mod. It's still a very fun driver.

Keep in mind that an ACVW is not a modern car like your (I assume) Jetta.
They drive by cable. Meaning the throttle and clutch are cable connected to the engine and transmission.
So for the novice ACVW driver, it can be a learning cycle.

ACVW's have a unique smell. It's kinda like musty burlap. Mixed with gas fumes(sometimes). They are a little noisy. You hear the trans whine if it is a bit used. The brakes are not modern at all. Shocked But can be pretty damn good. With some work.

The early cars don't drive as well as the later cars. But the later the car the more complicated they are to repair.
Are you willing to work on the car yourself? Or are you going to have a mechanic maintain your ACVW ride? Should you choose to own one.

I'm 61 yo. And have driven ACVW's for 50 years. I learned at 10 to drive one and have been smitten by the Bug ever since.

Give one a try and see if it scratches your itch!
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Zundfolge1432 Premium Member
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 6:59 pm    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

Iím in Oklahoma as well and the first thing I did nearly 35 years ago to get involved with VW people was locate and call the representative of the VVWCA, we are both still here just a little bit older. I canít speak for OKC area but Tulsa has enough VW action to keep anyone busy. Start with contacting this business
www.Bughaus.com and youíll find a full service parts store specializing in air cooled and a machine shop. Thereís been a local club since the late 80s here in one form or another. VW foul air club is another choice but as I think about donít discount some of the smaller towns like Springfield and Joplin Missouri, Fayetteville and Little Rock Arkansas, Dallas Texas, Kansas City, St. Louis. All of these are within a few hours and all have ties to VW community.

Early June Catoosa Oklahoma will host another VW show with smaller shows in Springfield and of course Eureka Springs Arkansas, a three day blowout that attracts people from all over the world. Going full circle Iíd start with Eric at the Bughaus he knows where the action is. PM me and you can drive this lovely 1974 bug.
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BorisGrishenko
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 9:21 pm    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

67rustavenger wrote:
Boris,
I like KYPhil's idea to contact a local club and see if you can get a ride along. Or maybe, a kind club member will let you drive his car. That would be a plus.
If you were local to me. I'd let you drive my 67. It's an easy driver. Considering, mine is a resto-mod. It's still a very fun driver.

Keep in mind that an ACVW is not a modern car like your (I assume) Jetta.
They drive by cable. Meaning the throttle and clutch are cable connected to the engine and transmission.
So for the novice ACVW driver, it can be a learning cycle.

ACVW's have a unique smell. It's kinda like musty burlap. Mixed with gas fumes(sometimes). They are a little noisy. You hear the trans whine if it is a bit used. The brakes are not modern at all. Shocked But can be pretty damn good. With some work.

The early cars don't drive as well as the later cars. But the later the car the more complicated they are to repair.
Are you willing to work on the car yourself? Or are you going to have a mechanic maintain your ACVW ride? Should you choose to own one.

I'm 61 yo. And have driven ACVW's for 50 years. I learned at 10 to drive one and have been smitten by the Bug ever since.

Give one a try and see if it scratches your itch!


I am definitely willing (and eager) to work on the car myself. And I rode in one a couple of times as a teenager, but now I'm almost 40. A friend had a '58 he rebuilt with his dad, and another friend had a squareback. Rode in a 70s Super a couple of times as well. Never did ride with the guy around the corner but I helped him replace his ragtop on his '63 once. Literally everything you describe sparks positive for me rather than negative.

I'm all for getting hold of a local club and will gladly do so as soon as I find them, and this seems like a great start.

Zundfolge1432 wrote:
Iím in Oklahoma as well and the first thing I did nearly 35 years ago to get involved with VW people was locate and call the representative of the VVWCA, we are both still here just a little bit older. I canít speak for OKC area but Tulsa has enough VW action to keep anyone busy. Start with contacting this business
www.Bughaus.com and youíll find a full service parts store specializing in air cooled and a machine shop. Thereís been a local club since the late 80s here in one form or another. VW foul air club is another choice but as I think about donít discount some of the smaller towns like Springfield and Joplin Missouri, Fayetteville and Little Rock Arkansas, Dallas Texas, Kansas City, St. Louis. All of these are within a few hours and all have ties to VW community.

Early June Catoosa Oklahoma will host another VW show with smaller shows in Springfield and of course Eureka Springs Arkansas, a three day blowout that attracts people from all over the world. Going full circle Iíd start with Eric at the Bughaus he knows where the action is. PM me and you can drive this lovely 1974 bug.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


I'm a little southwest of Norman, so that's definitely within reasonable range. If I haven't just gone for it and got something I'll take you up on that! Thanks for letting me know when the upcoming events are. Getting plugged in is always a challenge at first and I'll be sure to contact Eric. Looking forward to some events, after last year it's hard to know what's going to happen sometimes.
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sportin-wood
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2021 11:27 am    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

I'm in Texas, but Tulsa has a Facebook page (if you do that kind of thing) that has over 1100 members that post often.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/996321753740712/
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BorisGrishenko
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2021 12:10 pm    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

sportin-wood wrote:
I'm in Texas, but Tulsa has a Facebook page (if you do that kind of thing) that has over 1100 members that post often.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/996321753740712/


Sounds like a good resource, but alas, I'm not a Facebook user.
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anthracitedub
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2021 12:48 pm    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

If I still lived in Lawton, Iíd let ya drive mine.
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BorisGrishenko
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2021 12:56 pm    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

anthracitedub wrote:
If I still lived in Lawton, Iíd let ya drive mine.
Much appreciated. Lawton's actually one of the places we considered while moving here.
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anthracitedub
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 30, 2021 7:48 am    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

Good choice not moving to L town... itís kinda rotten😊. Thereís still some VW people hiding out there though.
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BorisGrishenko
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 30, 2021 7:59 am    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

anthracitedub wrote:
Good choice not moving to L town... itís kinda rotten😊. Thereís still some VW people hiding out there though.


Yeah, we targeted a geographic area and then widened our area until we found something we loved. I spent a decade along the border with Texas on the opposite side and what we found is pretty great so far. Outside a small town and I've done small town before. It's fascinating how gossip travels in these places!
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Rome
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PostPosted: Sat May 01, 2021 5:55 pm    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

Just sitting in one and not driving can give you a realistic first impression. Beetles are quite narrow, so that your left shoulder is close to the door. If you often drive with a passenger (wife, grown child, etc.) you may find that your right shoulder is close to her/his left one- hardly any "personal space". Then your hands are close to the windshield instead of it being 2 feet away as in modern cars. Your feet will be in motion a lot; will your shoes be OK on the clutch and gas pedals? Will you regard driving a manual transmission with its constant shifting as too much effort?

If you've been driving roomy modern cars with automatic transmissions, power brakes, air conditioning, etc. for many years/decades, you may find the Beetle driving experience too complicated/involved or primitive.
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iowegian
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PostPosted: Sat May 01, 2021 6:16 pm    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

Rome wrote:


If you've been driving roomy modern cars with automatic transmissions, power brakes, air conditioning, etc. for many years/decades, you may find the Beetle driving experience too complicated/involved or primitive.

Indeed.
Texting while driving a Beetle is most difficult.
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BorisGrishenko
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PostPosted: Sat May 01, 2021 7:33 pm    Post subject: Re: First Drives? Reply with quote

Rome wrote:
Just sitting in one and not driving can give you a realistic first impression. Beetles are quite narrow, so that your left shoulder is close to the door. If you often drive with a passenger (wife, grown child, etc.) you may find that your right shoulder is close to her/his left one- hardly any "personal space". Then your hands are close to the windshield instead of it being 2 feet away as in modern cars. Your feet will be in motion a lot; will your shoes be OK on the clutch and gas pedals? Will you regard driving a manual transmission with its constant shifting as too much effort?

If you've been driving roomy modern cars with automatic transmissions, power brakes, air conditioning, etc. for many years/decades, you may find the Beetle driving experience too complicated/involved or primitive.


A fair summation. I actively switched to a manual transmission a few years back specifically because I don't like being so separated from what I'm doing. When I drive, I like to be driving, not lulled into inattention. I just have not had an opportunity to go quite this Spartan before. I find switching to my wife's or a rental's automatic an irritation most of the time.

The physical space issue is one of my points of curiosity. I know I'm not outlandishly tall or large, but I certainly wouldn't object to getting a feel for the space.
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