Anyone know much about Australian built (CKD) late bays?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by MarksOzzy73, Jan 23, 2012.

  1. Hi All,

    New to this, so be kind...

    I have bought an australian import '73 late bay kombi and wondered if anyone knows much about them. From what I can find on the web, they were sent as a kit to Oz to be assembled as a tax dodge. Were they full rolling shells or just panels to weld up?

    My birth cert says it was colour L345 light grey, but it has always been yellow as far as I can see. Anybody else seen this on their birth cert?

    My Chassis number starts with *233 2 xxx xxx* but it also has another plate spot welded above it with the following numbers 234031 1224. is this a specific oz build number?

    Any info would be much appreciated

  2. Baysearcher

    Baysearcher [secret moderator]

    My Aussie import also has the plate spotwelded above the chassis number.
    Cant help with any of your other points though!
    Has yours got the horrible looking gas locker door on the side?
  3. :ttiwwp:

    they were sent down under in flat pack style, then assembled under license by VW Australia.
    Sopru were a popular conversion. pop up a pic and we will see if we can tell you about it
  4. CKD were full non rolling shells. No doors, glass etc - just the body. Everything else was assembled when it arrived, hence them all being slapped up Illegitimate child hybrids - they'd get built up out of what was available on the day. Mines a SA CKD so pretty much the same thing. Can't help you with the plates, other than on mine the chassis is not stamped in the engine bay. It has an oval plate tack welded in there with nothing on it, and no, the chassis has not been stamped and then ground back... In the cab behind the drivers door I have a plate which is (similar to) an M-plate or chassis plate, which shows the chassis number
  5. Dormobile
    Head office: Dormobile Australia Pty Ltd, 9 Wiluna St, Fyshwick, ACT, 2609
    Dormobile conversions are produced for the VW, Bedford and Ford Transit vans. Complete and partial conversions on new and used vans are available direct from Dormobile.

    The Dormobile conversion is readily identified in the crowd because instead of being raised vertically as usual, the roof is hinged along the offside and tilts up to add a relatively big area above the normal roofline. The fibreglass roof has 2 fixed windows and two hatches. With the roof up there’s more than 2.4 m (8ft) headroom. Two folding single bunks are the upper berths.

    The three conversions share similar features which include a three-way fridge, plastic sink and drainage board with water foot-pumped from a 21-litre plastic jerrycan in the cupboard, a two-burner grill, fluorescent light, and roof-up warning light. Tow-bar, cabin bunk and electric water pump are among the many options available.

    The fully lined roof costs about $885 and the van can then be left empty for commercial purposes or have furniture added for campervanning.

    Land Cruisers
    Head office: Land Cruisers Conversions Pty Ltd, 33 Alleyne St, Chatswood, NSW 2067.

    Land Cruisers don’t quote specific prices for its conversions but because they range from $1800-$3000 depending on layout, furniture and features. A spokesman said that most Land Cruisers conversions have custom features, so it’s rare for any two to have the same design and price.

    Equipment and features shared by most LC conversions include 240v/12v/gas fridge, two-burner griller or a stovette with oven and two burner top, stainless steel sink, Melanime-finished furniture and solar insulated curtain. A selection of furniture is available for fit-it-yourself van projects.

    Land Cruisers concentrates on the popular vans including VW’s.

    Head office: E. Sopru and Co, 6-22 Antoine St, Rydalmere, NSW 2116. Branches in Adelaide, Melbourne and Brisbane.

    Sopru’s best known conversions are the Campmobile Volkaswagens, with new complete models marketed through VW dealers.

    For the VW, Sopru’s range begins with a Handyman conversion, consisting of extending roof and other minor parts for about $699. There are three complete conversions – Basic, Traveller and Deluxe. The £1825 Basic features include table, rear seat-bed, side cupboard, wardrobe, stainless sink, hand pump, fluorescent light, kangaroo bar with covered spare wheel and under-floor 45-litre water tank. No gas, fridge and cooker. Those items are added in the £2697 Traveller version which also has an additional utility seat, retractable side step and roof rack. The £2960 Deluxe model has all those features plus 240v hot plate and power point, extra lighting, deluxe upholstery and a folding exterior table.

    Head office: Swagman Conversions 150 Frances St, Lidcombe, NSW 2141 (not sure if this is a print error)

    Sunliner campers are made by Hunter Conversions to suit Nissan E20, Bedford CFS, Toyota Hiace, Mazda F1000 and Volkswagen.

    Hunter doesn’t list standard prices for the conversions. Depending on the vehicle, Sunliner conversions vary from $2000-3500. Standard features include low-profile roof , fibreglass roof, Melanime-finish cabinets, stainless steel sink, galvanised under-floor water-tank, fluorescent lights, tinted side windows, two-burner cooker and 12v/240v/ gas fridge.

    Head office: Swagman Conversions 150 Frances St, Lidcombe, NSW 2141

    One of the most prolific producers of van conversions , Swagman makes fibreglass and wood furniture, offering either or both depending on the vehicle.

    There are four varieties of Swagman Volkswagens: Deluxe and standard fibreglass at about $2850 and $2650 respectively, and the equivalents in timber for about $2795 and $2545. The Deluxe features are similar to the Nissan (roof rack, fluorescent light, filtered roof vent, shade awning, upper berth boards and mattress, indoor/outdoor table, two-burner cooker, 12v/240v/gas fridge, 45 litre fibreglass under-floor water tank, 240v double power point & vinyl floor), but the standard editions have more deletions including the under-floor water tank, fly-screened centre window and 240v power point.

    Head office: Trakka-Bout Sales (NSW) Pty Ltd, 116 Military Rd, Neutral Bay, NSW 2089.

    Trakka’s van conversions revolve around Volkswagen, Nissan E20 and Toyota Hiace with four basic floorplan layouts for each. The VW conversion averages about $2700 according to Trakka, but there is no list price as such because you start with the low-profile pop-top roof at about $640, then choose your floorplan, and from there the price depends on how much furniture or features you order. You’re limited only by your imagination and budget because the range of options is pretty big.
  6. Luckily mine does not have that big plate stuck out the long panel side. I was still a kombi when it first arrived, The first owner had it blasted, new brazilian from panel and a paintjob. Has a rock and roll bed too but still has dried concrete on the floor under the checker tiles!Its also had a 2ltr CJ added at some point but birth cert said it should have been a 1.7.

    I love it and just wanted to know a bit more about it as I only has history from 2009. I will post a few pics once I figure out how.

  7. I was doubting the quality of the spot welds when I went to buy it, they look OK but not as neat as i would have expected from VW. Thats why I though it my have been assembled from panels by the ozzy's. Were all shells produced in Germany around this time as I thought some other sites around the world were building them too such as SA?
  8. Thanks for the link Aussie Bay, answered a few of my questions
  11. The birth cert just says destination Australia? I wondered if the additional plate above the chassis number was from the manufacturing plant. It doesn't have an M-plate, just an aluminium tag with Volkswagen Australia on it
  12. Thanks to all of you for your replies, hope to uncover more soon

  13. I don't think they were rolling shells, CKD = complete knock down
    Have a google for the Kombi club or similar in Australia
  14. has lots of info on the Sopru and Swagman conversions (which were the two official VW camping conversions in Oz). Mine incidentally is a Swagman. Used to be my daily driver in Sydney and continues to be here in the UK. Madman!
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2014
  15. I have just got my Birth Certificate, mine too shows Paint L345, but is jaffa, I can only assume they were painted when converted, bit like the Danburys over here, mine has the VW Campmobile Decal on the tailgate.
  16. Terrordales

    Terrordales Nightshift Admin

    They were the ones which were officially sold by VW dealers, other types were aftermarket conversions.
  17. Thanks Terrordales, I remember you telling me, I have just received the Birth Cert back with few more details,It says it left Germany with L345 paint Light Grey, but is now jaffa. It always looks like I was jaffa, would it have been repainted when the conversion took place, I notice somebody else on this thread had same thing, just wondered, are the convertors E, Sopru and Co still in exsistance.
  18. Terrordales

    Terrordales Nightshift Admin

    Sopru closed their doors many years ago & morphed in to this
    They were based in Parafield Gardens in South Australia & also had a branch in Lidcombe (a suburb of Sydney)

Share This Page