Wednesday 26 February 2014

Die Autolüfter

Came across this little rarity recently whilst sifting through my box of miscellaneous vw parts:

It is a VDO/Braun ‘Autolüfter’ dash mountable fan and it was given to me 10 years ago by an old neighbor. I remember being out in the street one afternoon having just moved to Bristol and was tinkering away on the bug when a delightful chap came over and starting chatting to me about the old vw's that he had owned over the years. He suddenly recalled that he probably had a few old accessories kicking around in his attic and hurried off into a house a couple of doors down from where I used to live. He came back maybe 15-20 mins later with this lovely item that he wanted me to have and did not want anything for it in exchange. I never saw him again after that day and I have long since moved, but I still think about what a generous stranger he was! It is going to look great once it is all cleaned up and mounted in the center of the dash when this resto is eventually complete.

After some searching of the interweb I came across some images from the instruction manual. This great illustration shoes how and where the fan mounts on a Beetle dash:

Thursday 20 February 2014

The Reddening!

Pushed on with cleaning the inside of the shell this week. Finished stripping the crud off of all the fiddly areas in and around the boot section and gave it all the usual lick of primer:

Then moved onto the rear quarters. Made quite a mess when the grinder/wirebrush combo came into contact with the insulation material that was attached to the inner side of the outer skin:

The mashed-up residue got everywhere and because it is sticky by its own nature it had a habit of bonding itself to everything it landed on - including my head! Was quite a satisfying task though in a strange way. Once again, all the bare-metaled areas received a liberal coat of primer: 

Having grown sick of the sight of the awful patched-up area on the drivers side rear crossmember, I decided to action.... of the angle grinder kind:

I know it doesn't look like much of an improvement, but at least I have revealed what is left of the original metal and most significantly I have some good reference points to work off when I come to fabricating new patches. So, here's how things are currently looking in the back:

Tuesday 11 February 2014

Still procrastinating on the shell

Finished cleaning up the rear valance and removed the remains of the tatty old seal lip: 

As always I gave the area a lick of primer:

Then I turned my attention and arsenal of wire brushes to the rear interior area. I did not know what I was going to find under all the rust, horsehair, glue residue and seal sealer:

There are the typical areas that will need patching such as the outer corners that curve around the wheel arches: 

And just below the rear window the was some corrosion that will need rectifying - I always remember the window seal being cracked, brittle and generally past its prime. I just wish that I would have had the sense to replace it before the bloody spongy moss started growing on top of it!

...but in all I was relatively relieved to discover that the whole boot section was in a fairly good state:

So, lots of fiddly sanding (which is still ongoing), but I am enjoying myself just plodding along on the shell. It is just a task that seems to fit my mood lately. Away from the garage I am on the lookout for a shot-blast cabinet so that I can strip some of the trickier parts (and there is far more of them than I first imagined!) - but to find anything that can contain parts of substantial bulk within the rather meager budget I have allocated is proving tough. So, I am weighing up my options and considering building one from scratch out of reclaimed wood. So, watch this space for a possible project tangent in the near future!