Restoration of Riley

Discussion in 'Restorations' started by BradB, Apr 25, 2018.

  1. Right so this is a fun one, This is my first venture into the VW latebay scene. It went about as well as you could expect for a first time buyer attempting to buy a T2 with minimal rust.

    The idea was to buy a bay from somewhere with a "bit" of work to do to learn the ropes. I mean it's definitely been a learning curve, a bit more asymptotic than I would have liked but still. So I bought a 1973 Bay from your friendly eBay person who promised it only had a bit of work to do. I'll skip over the full story as I've covered that on another post but needless to say the combination of trustworthy ebay sellers, Questionable recent MOT passes and my complete lack of experience meant I ended up with a van which resembled more closely a colander than a vehicle.

    Below are some photos that show the worst parts, the van had an undertray which kept a lot of the moisture in causing the main chassis sections to rust away. The previous owner also had a love of fiberglassing instead of using sheet metal.

    DSC04194.JPG DSC04134.JPG DSC04144.jpg DSC_0156.jpg

    If you're interested of seeing the full extent more photos are on a previous thread called "Tewkesbury/Gloucestershire Bay owners Help Needed"

    From that I met up with 1973Daisey who helped showing me the state his van was in and how he went about fixing it up, Big thanks to him for that, got a crash course in how to go about it. It was also quite useful to see where things should be on chassis that's not missing large sections of it.

    Anyway so the first thing after finding a place to store it was to get some shelter and acquire a rollover jig to make the process of working on the chassis a little easier. Colin 0ver at CJAutos was very helpful with that. Then I got the engine out which was surprisingly easy and tilted it on it's side.

    Next was some more expert advice, Davidoft supplied me with some chassis lengths and some other spare parts, He then came down and helped with an initial assessment, He stripped out the old rusty parts by the end of the day we had the first part of the chassis leg in. He gave me a more comprehensive guide as to how to go abouts getting the van fixed, and also a welding tutorial.

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    In comparison to his neat barely visible welding my attempts on the other end are a little more rough and ready. I can't quite remember if we put that front top hat in on the same day or not but that went in around the same time. Then I put the inner sill in to make sure I had something to line the rear top hats up against.

    Just adding these first few sections in made a huge difference to the solidity of the van, first time it's felt robust since I'd started working on it.

    Anyway next up came the rear top hats and clearing the mess that was the remains of a rear crossmember.
    But apparently that'll have to wait until the next post as i've reached the limit of what I can upload image wise per message.

    After the rear top hats went in I was going to sort out that crossmember but given there was a fair bit of work to do on the bottom half that would be significantly easier when the van is flipped the other way up.

    The next big thing was the other half of that chassis beam, A trickier one given it's curvy nature around the rear axle but after some trial and error it only partially resembles a blind cubist interpretation of complex curves.

    Again like I said, not neat but functional.

    Anyway that's where I'm up to so far, this was a rather brief summary but I'm sure I'll remember bits and add more information in retrospectively with some newer posts, prequels are never worse than the originals right.

    Next up is flipping it the other way around and putting in that other main chassis beam.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Apr 26, 2018
    nicktuft, davidoft, Coco and 10 others like this.
  2. So here are the rest of the photos, the parts where it's looking a little more like a van underneath.
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  3. BradB likes this.
  4. @BradB Nice one. Where did you get the roll over yokes? Right handy looking for what I need.

  5. good luck with the project fella, keep at it & keep the updates coming!
    BradB likes this.
  6. It was in a warehouse clearance from CJ Autos, it isn't what I'd call light when it comes to tilting it but with the aid of a long jack and something to cushion the fall on the other side it works well. That's the one I've got currently.
    deisedakdak and Andy76 like this.
  7. That would scare me - good luck - hope to see the underside done by next week!
  8. Best of luck mate! Sure you’ll go a grand job.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    art b likes this.
  9. That bus was worse than mine and mine was bad although the rot is very familiar.

    Nice job.
    Coco and art b like this.
  10. Wow..that's a project....
    I've not seen one that rotten
  11. Heck, I thought mine was rusty, though I've yet to cut the belly pans of mine. Nice to see another one saved.
    Last edited: May 2, 2018
    art b likes this.
  12. A project is one way of putting it...
    Yh the belly pan caused a lot of issues on mine, glad to see it off

    It remains to be seen if it'll survive the rebuild but with any luck it should, the extra challenge of trying to do it on a student budget should be fun.
    nicktuft likes this.
  13. Just keep chipping away at it and you’ll get there.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    paradox and BradB like this.
  14. She's now been flipped up the other way to make a start on the other main beam

  15. So that's the damage belly pans create....:eek:
    Coco likes this.
  16. makes me feel nervous to remove the belly pan on mine
  17. Good luck with resto looking forward to more photos, keep at it.
  18. davidoft

    davidoft Sponsor

    That’s looking better, keep going you’ll be finished in no time
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    Attached Files:

    art b, paradox and Deefer66 like this.

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