Woody my 72/73 bay window resto project .......an epic tale of rust.......

Discussion in 'Restorations' started by Diddymen, Aug 11, 2011.

  1. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    ....nov 20 2009

    As the weather is still to wet to get some work on the bus done, and the weekend looks bad too I thought I'd post some more pics of my bus.

    I took the belly pans off - where did all that rust come from???

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    Last edited: Oct 2, 2017
  2. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    O.k so it was the sills, b post, top hats etc...

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  3. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    Heres what it looked like from the out side and the after the outer sill was removed.

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  4. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    Some more sill shots!!

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  5. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    Still November 2009 posts.....

    The sliding door sills are in the same condition as the drivers side. Some of the top hats need cutting back - mainly the front one as it had compleatly corroded away on one side.
    The rest of the under side is in not to bad condition....other than the chassis repairs I'll have to do.

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  6. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    some more underside pics

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  7. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    And this is where the fun all starts :)

    Before I go on theres a few things I've learnt that might be worth meantioning now.

    The old saying measure twice cut once is soooo true

    How ever long you think your resto will take - trebble it

    how ever much money you think it will cost - trebble it

    if you need to repair the lower rear seat belt mount, inner rear wheel arch and rear arch splash panel (what the mud guard bolts to) then its worth buying a whole rear inner wheel arch tub - I didnt but with hind sight it would have saved a fair bit of time

    If you need to repair the front seat belt mounts and lower front wheel arch tub .....and if you've got to do the front arches - then its probably best to buy a complete front tub and replace the lot - I didnt but it would have saved time

    buy the best quality panels available - genuine where possible, they will fit better and be of thicker metal - and they will save you time fitting them.

    Turn your welder up more than you think if your just starting to weld

    leave a 1mm gap between the panels your welding together - you will get better penetration - in the begining I used to have the metal tight against each other and getting good penetration was difficult - leave a small gap

    get an auto darkening welding helmet - your welding will improve a lot

    get some good clamps such as inter grips and locking pliers/mole grips

    take things apart carefully so you can see how to put them back together

    ....any more I remember then I will post them up :)
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2017
    Peebee likes this.
  8. many wise words from a man who now knows the crack , thats why i like watching other people s work , compair what i do to what you or they do and try it to see if its easier , top marks owen nw
     
  9. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    Thanks Owen, that means a lot comming from some one with your skills :)

    I've learnt quite a bit from looking at other peoles threads (including yours) so I hope that I can pass on some of things I've learnt along the way myself.

    I like to post up every thing honestly so that if I make a mistake other can see where I've gone wrong or point me in the right direction.

    I always appreciate feed back of how I doing - be that if I've done something good or if I've done something bad.
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2017
  10. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    I'm actually quite enjoying reposting some of this and seeing how much I've done :)

    now lets get some more posts up.....

    I've decided to start on the drivers (offside) sill as the other side has the sliding door rails which I don't fancy too much!
    So first thing was to remove the old sill out riggers and jacking points. I cut as much as I could with a grinder (cutting disc) and then drilled out the spot welds from inside the van. A lot of chiselling, grinding, swearing and gentle leavering later, the sill was finaly removed.

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  11. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    Still in Nov 2009...

    The next bit I did was to cut out that nasty patch behind the drivers seat panel. This panel also forms the rear inner face of the front wheel arch (the bit with a bulge in it).
    After a lot of careful cutting away of several patches I got back to the original metal. I still couldn't get to the patch I was cutting out as the outer wheel arch had been welded on top. As I was going to re do the seat belt repair I decided to also cut out the rear section of the front wheel arch - see photos!!!

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  12. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    That section of front arch was removed carefully so I could graft it back on later.......
     
  13. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    I could now see how bad the front top hat was and so I've had to cut out part of the middle crossmember to get to the rotten area.

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    Last edited: Oct 2, 2017
  14. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    Heres what I've chopped out so far

    You might be able to see that the pipe carrying the wiring loom was also removed as it pretty much turned to dust when the belly panels came off

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    Last edited: Oct 2, 2017
  15. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    I've chopped out some small sections of floor and the rear top hats will need attention along with the rear wheel arch.

    I ordered some new panels :)

    I noticed that the inner sill didn't fit right ???
    It seemed too short and didn't have a recess along the top to match the floor profile.

    You can see in the pictures that when clamped on to the middle sill, the inner sill was way too short.

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    Remember what I said earlier about getting genuine panels??? this was the first of many poor fitting panels :( :mad:
     
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  16. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    It turns out that the inner sill was a repro panel rather than genuine VW.
    The place I got it from sent it out as they didn't have any of the genuine ones (which I'd asked for) :mad:
    After calling them up they sent out a genuine panel which looks like it will fit perfectly - I still had to pay another postage fee for the inconvinience!
     
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  17. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    I've cut out a few small bits of floor and made a few repair sections ready for welding. You can see how much I've had to cut out to get rid of that patch. That is nearly all the cutting out done in this area, there'll probably be a few little bits still need trimming back though.

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  18. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    I've been working the last few Saturdays so have not had much time (and the weathers been bad) to get much done lately. Still the overtime will pay for xmas (or more bits for the van ;) )

    I worked until early afternoon and got home to find the weather was dry!!. Had a cuppa, took some phots, got my overalls on and cut down a new top hat section from a repair panel - I'd cut the last one too short so had to do it again, I'll use the other bit for the rear top hats instead. Had another cuppa and when I came out it was raining :mad:

    I'm ready to start welding some bits in now, the first bit I will need to put in will be the front top hat floor support as this will determine where the sill and deformation panel goes(rear of drivers seat/inner front wheel arch) but as you can see from the picture there is a small hole on the top of the chassis rail which will sit under the top hat. I'll have to weld this up before the top hat goes in properly, I will slip a small plate under the hole, plug weld it up and grind back.

    Before I put the top hat section in I have made a small panel which will sit in front of the top hat above the chassis rail which will be part of the rear front wheel arch this will have to go in first as I wont be able to properly weld it up with the top hat in place - hopefully it will be a bit clearer when I've done it and posted the pictures.
    I can also weld in the floor repair plates I've made - when the weather is good enough!!!

    And that's every thing up to date with the resto so far. (at least it was up to Nov 22 2009)

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  19. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    Ahh yes...getting it into the garden now theres a tail ;D

    As your all up to speed you'll remember I had to put the Bus in the neighbours garden. I hadn't removed the fence to the back garden when I got it brought home on the back of the truck and Ian - my neighbour had got it running whilst in his garden (we have a shared driveway between our houses).
    The following weekend I had finished destroying my flower bed and choped down part of the rear fence (just out of shot to the right of the photo) - well, taken a section out between fence posts. I was ready to bring the bus home.
    The family jumped in for the first time the bus had moved under it's own power in 4 years and for the first time I had driven a bus :) It ended up at a 40 min 40ft trip ???
    Engine starsted and ran smoothly, every one comfortable and away we went on to the drive. I'd not realised quite how little the wheels move in relation to the amount of turns on the steering wheel :lo: any way.....reversing into the gap in the fence took a little while, backwards, forwards wheel on full lock backward 3 inches, wheel on full lock the other way, forward 3 inches......this went on for about 15 mins untill I was lined up to get through the fence........kids asking are we there yet....their only 3yrs and 4yr old can't belive they've already worked out that question yet :)

    So all lined up and gave it some revs.. accelerator went straight to the floor, revs stayed the same and accelerator wouldnt come up again. First thoughts was that the cable had snapped. The bus is nearly the exact length of the width of the driveway so I was now blocking access for my neighbour [​IMG]:. Sweating profusly after the upper body work out I turned the engine off ordered every one out and went in for a cuppa. Came back out and found it was the pin in the accelerator pedal that had popped out, so after a bit of fiddling got it back together and started it up again. Family got back in and we played the backwards forwards game in the garden for another 15mins or so untill it came to rest in it's current position. :) Phew. (and there it has remained ever since)

    I did warn you that I ramble on didnt I :-[

    Well back to the resto.............. November......
     
  20. Diddymen

    Diddymen Moderator

    Anyway, I did get some bits done this last weekend. Saturday saw a break in the rain so even though it was muddy under foot I thought I'd get out there. Got set up, had a cup of tea, cut a top hat section to size (correct size this time ::) ) cleaned up metal work ready to weld.....and que rain. End of days work :mad:
    Sunday was raining :( a break to the weather in the afternoon saw me out in record time, no tea break this time ;D
    Still squelchy under foot. Fiddled around a bit to get the small plate under the rust hole ready to plug it up, I had to get under the van and wedge the plate in place with an old screwdriver. Luckily (actually unluckily!) directly below this small hole in the chassis is an even bigger hole :eek: which I could use to insert the plate. I'll do the chassis repairs after I've got the new sills on to give some stability to the area.
    I've been using an old cot mattress from our youngest's cot as it is vinal covered so stays dry and is comfortable to lay on.
    Before you all start phoning child line to report abuse I should point out that my youngest has out grow his cot and is now in a bed! so the mattress was going to go down the tip.
    once the plate was in place I could plug weld the hole up. All went surprisingly well ;D - considering I was squatting in a muddy puddle whilst welding - probably not the smartest move on my part.
    Next was to grind down the weld, it is in a difficult area where the 5inch grinder wont fit so I had to use my end/die grinder with a rotory file. End or die grinders are a bit like a power drill with no handle and they run at very high speeds (an over simplified explanation) it was still pretty tricky and not the neatest finishing off I've done but as it will be covered by another panel and coated with seam sealer and stone chip I'm not to bothered especially considering it had started raining again :( :mad: :( I gave it a quick coat of etch primer and packed up the tools and went in for a cup of tea.
    O.k. so the description probably took longer than the work done but it is a psycological mile stone to me ;D
    Tomorrow's Friday the week end starts again and hopefully I'll get a bit more done than I did last time ::)
    Here are the before and after pics ;D ;D
     

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