A VW Bay Window Story: Rust, Rehab and Restoration- “Oh look, more rust…”

“Oh look, more rust…”

So here is where it began…

I rolled the van onto the drive under the 1 dp (dad power) engine, then stood back to admire the best buy of my life so far. Holes every where, dripping old oil, mirrors hanging off and questionable ‘cigarette’ burns in the upholstery…I could not have been happier!

I began to list the jobs in my head and optimistically set a target for completion around the end of August that year. Baring in mind that it was halfway through March this was incredibly ambitious. Little did I know that I would just be finishing the welding chapter of this endeavour 12 months from this point…

The first task was to strip the van and I was super psyched to start and see past the van’s face value. Thus began the seemingly impossible task of finding a good section of solid metal any where on the bus.

 

 

 

 

 

The bus was stripped down to its shell over a period of 4 months. What should have been simple removing bolts, screws and other fixings often ended in expletives and a metal cutting disk!

 

 

 

 

 

As a lot of the parts were taken out, it left seals, mounts and fixings destroyed. This bill and shopping list was ever growing, but this gave me more to look forward to…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After much careful studying we followed instructions on “Dropping the engine out”. We took our time for this stage as this was the heart of the bus and parts could be expensive.

Best laid plans and all that, our attempt at “dropping the engine” was a little too literal for my liking (see picture left)…

 

 

We finally removed the last pieces and again took stock of what we had in front of us. Never since in my life have I experienced a feeling of excitement and daunting all at the same time.

The welding chapter was about to begin, but first, we had found a new and exciting toy…