Friday, February 23, 2007

2004 Tear down

The photo that you see in the very first post was taken in November 2003. I had bought the car in 2000 and eventhought it was in bad but running condition i just fell in love with it on the spot(i ignored all advice that i read in the Bug Shop website). The only thing i did to the car after i bought it was a new paint job and new tyres. Wish i had a picture of it when i bought it. I changed the absorbers a few months later and also changed the tie rods and steering damper a year later.

The car was in terrible shape, badly rusting (I have seen worst) and the engine needed a complete overhaul, but as usual, money was a deterrent. The floor was barely holding on to the main shell of the car. If you looked down you could see the road and if it rained very heavily, water would start flooding into the car. When that happened, a small wave of water will come splashing onto the front passenger's feet whenever i braked. I know i love the beach and waves and all, but hey... this was too much.

I would wave my hand out the window when i turned right because only the rear left side signal light was working. I would flash my headlights when i wanted to turn left. Talking about head lights, they were only there so that people could see the car coming down the road, otherwise it was useless. I could not see anything with it... its amazing how i used to drive at night and in those days i used to do alot of night driving. Another nice feature was the left door, would open on its own, even when it was locked whenever i made a sharp right turn because the left door was hanging on only one hinge (Each door had two).. the bottom part of the door where the second hinge were was rotten with rust.

The pickup from standstill was pretty good though... i used to cream those kelisa fellows at the traffic lights... kekeke... then they would beat me at the straight... the car never could get past 60 miles/h (about 90km/h), but i would then overtake them at sharp corners. The car cornered like a dream. I would over take atleast a dozen cars left and right when coming down the sharp curve at Jalan Dato Abu Bakar, Section 16/1 (the road that leads to phileo damansara). But a drive to Klang would take a toll on the engine and i would have to stop at the side of the road for a little while.

So in November 2004 i decided to start restoring the car. Since budget was a concern i told myself that i would take my time restoring it. The first thing that i wanted to do was get a new floor pan into the car and attack a few rust spots.

My mum wanted me to sell the car and discouraged me from restoring it... under pressure from my mum and my sister i almost did. At that point i did what i thought was a good idea. I tore the car apart to prep it for body work. In my haste i yanked out all the wiring from the front. Dont get me wrong... the wiring was shit and everything was shorting, but i think i should not have messed with the wiring so that i would not have had to tow the car everywhere now.......... Here is the carnage;
(First to come off was the bonnet and the signal lights ; I had to rip out the running boards which were welded on the fenders and side)
(Removing the front and back fenders which took some time and i broke a few of the nuts and the treading at the body... oops!)

(The Petrol Tank , Wipers and Wiper Motor was easily removed)

(Removed all electricals from the car the speedo, petrol gauge and front main wiring loom; The wires looked like that even before i took it out of the car)

(The non vw seats removed, note the modified seat brackets arrggghhh!!)

(The batery area was badly rusted, you can see the road, found this pen stuck between the metal; The steering wheel and steering rod removed)
(You can see that the floor pan was hardly connected to the body; a little hard to see in the photo)

(The signal switch was cut in halve to accomedate the so called sports steering wheel arrrgg!! so sad; The floor looks good in this shot but as you can see below.......)
(underneath you can see that the floor was a bad patch sad so sad..)
(more modifications from the former owner, a secret compartment; there must have been some clutch problems and the mechanic did not know how to tackle it the proper way)
(a closeup of the secret compartment; yet another modification which i never came around fixing. The wire would sometimes get stuck and the pedal would stay down when i was driving. I would have to reach down and yank it loose... used to scary my passenger when this happened...kekeke)
In all it took me about two weeks to reach this stage. By that time i had scouted a few body metal shops to get quotes on putting in the new floor. i wanted to put in new floor pans (german metal replicas) but i only found that they sold brazillian one here which were notorious for being low quality and very thin. I settled on a shop in Subang Jaya near Giant who would fabricate the floor out of thick metal. There where two beetles there getting new floors done so i got to see how they did it. I liked it and the price was good so i struck a deal with him and set a date to bring the car.
Next - Body Shop!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Bug-O-Rama 2006

Went to the Bug-O-Rama last year, which was held at the Summit in Subang Jaya. I blogged about it HERE. It was my first big VW Show but i did not have my bug with me lah. This 50s beetle as seen in the photo here was the best car and the oldes beetle i have ever seen in the flesh. It was in prestine condition. Wish i could chat with the owner and view every inch oh this car in more detail.

Monday, February 12, 2007

The Kayu Ara Shop

Most of you vw nuts will know this place. its in Damansara at the Kampung Kayu Ara junction. Location:- Along the NKVE towards the toll from Damansara uptown, stay down to get to the Traffic light junction where you can either u-turn to Damansara Uptown or turn left to go to The Atria (Forgot whats it called). Pass the lights and you will see in on the left.

I managed to find seats for my bug. I had to scavenged the piles of parts that they had but i only found two 64 seats for the right and two 65 seats for the left. There where alot of post 70s seats in very good condition too but i wanted the 60s look. Well i did not want to come back again because the pre 66 seats are hard to find, so i bought one of each...

So now i have one right seat which is a 65 model and one left seat that was a 64 model... hmmm wonder if the 65 can be modified to look like the 64, or vise versa... actually there isnt alot of difference between the two, the most obvious being the top part of the seat is more curved on the 64 compared to the 65. As you can see in the photos below, the red seat is the 64.

As i mentioned in my last entry... i need the original bracket/runners to install original seats. The foreman cut out the brackets from one of the junk cars which i think was a 69 model. The body work/metal beaters should be able to weld the brackets onto the floor of my car. Ofcos the seats and the brackets will have to be restored first.

Seat covers will be one of the last things i do for the car. So for now i have to see about wiring the whole car..


Monday, February 05, 2007

Sulaiman's Place

Last Saturday morning, I went on a quest to find a VW mechanic shop which was recommend by a few VW nuts I know. It is a shop located near Taman Botanic Klang on the way to Banting. The owners name is Sulaiman.

Directions on getting there:- On the Kesas from Sunway, head towards west port. Get off at the Tmn Botanic/Banting exit. Turn left towards Banting. The shop is on the left about 1 kilometer from the exit. There is a Petronas Station next to it.

I knocked on the door and rang the bell a few times but no one came out. Looked around the place and tried a few more times but I guess no one was home… Oh well…

There seemed to be 4 cars there being worked on. I guess progress was slow.. Anyway at least I know where it is now. Took a couple of pictures of a few abandoned bugs…

The objective of going there was to get original low back vw seats which was standard on 65s and fit original seat runners/ guides for the seats. I noticed that all vw beetles that I see including mine do not have the original seats, thus are modified with brackets to take different kinds of seats………. Looks like it is going to be impossible to fit original seat runners and almost everyone (VW nuts) are telling me to just install any kind of coupe style seats……..sigh…

I am going to hold on to my objective……. for now..

Stopped by at Concept Auto Parts after leaving Sulaiman’s workshop to buy the following:-

1) Front Windscreen Rubber Seal (has chrome trim groove)
2) Rear Windscreen Rubber Seal (has chrome trim groove)
3) Bonnet Rubber Seal
4) Engine Lid Seal

Directions in getting there:- from Jalan Templer, turn right at the Old Klang Road traffic light junction. You will see Wisma Peter on your left. Take that left and then turn right, into the shop lots. You should be able to see a mechanic shop that has many Audis outside it. Concept Auto is next to it..