The Frankenbay, aka Frankie, has been home for a few weeks now and we've been having a bit of fun getting to know each other! The bus has a bit of a story, but don't they all? Thought I would document it here with a bit of what I've found out, what I'm doing to it and where we end up! Grab a cuppa and a biscuit or three and I'll bring you up to date! It was almost an impulse buy, I've looked at bays on and off for many years but the timing had never been right. I bought a T4 in 2010, converted into a camper and enjoyed every minute of it, for daily use and holidays. Late on in 2018 and it was getting a bit tired, with 220k on the clocks now. I'd been squirrelling my pennies away for a while to give it a refresh and was visiting some local VW places to get quotes to restore it, a daily driver was sourced so I could take the T4 off the road over winter. All the while planning this, I was still browsing alternatives on eBay, including T2s and T25s, but nothing really caught my eye. Then I met Frankie, out of the corner of my eye whilst talking about my T4, in the shadow of a barn with no lights, years of dust and a lot of missing parts. No interior other than cab seats and a steering wheel, but there was some potential in there somewhere.. And it was for sale... We dragged Frankie out into the light and had a poke around. It's a 73, UK, RHD twin slider microbus, factory windows, bench front seat and not a lot else! I was pleasantly surprised, a light amount of restoration had been done, with a few patches here and there and appeared pretty solid! It's not a pro job, but seems stuck in well, and a fair amount of the original metal remains in place. A little filler in the rear corners, but appears to be more for a smooth look rather than rotten holes. The paint was hard to judge under all that dirt, but wears Porsche guards red topped of with an as yet unidentified bluey-grey colour. A few storage marks here and there. Another home-brew job but seems to have stuck to the bus. Not what I would have chosen myself, but as it's done it can stay for now! It had a little facelift in preparation for a set of early bumpers, lowered a bit, and wearing an almost new set of Empi reps with Yoko tires gave a little hint of what could be... All of the body and paint was undertaken by a previous owner, known to the guys at the garage. He never finished the reassembly and it was moved on. The current owner had initially bought it to build a camper hire business, but that fell by the wayside when other commitments took over. In the last 12 months they had made a little progress in sourcing a rebuilt twin port Mexican motor, as well as replacing all the hard and soft brake lines, calipers and cylinders, and then it was left....again... Back to the barn until I turned up! As far as I know, neither of the 2 previous owners drove the bus Not really knowing air cooled stuff too well or appreciating all that was required at this stage, I struck a deal with the owners to secure the bus, and a deal with the garage to get it up to MOT standard for me to take home and carry on the interior works and general fettling. Back to the barn whilst awaiting it's turn on the lift, ETA Jan 2019! Part 2 to follow!