Lottie, a 79 full restoration Part 1/2/3/4/5

Discussion in 'Restorations' started by martinvention, Jul 12, 2015.

  1. Thanks James. I hope the next bits will be of some use out there. I have fitted both front wheel arches, lots of plug welding/grinding/flappy disc and then Bonda: Front arch.jpg
    Next job remove the front panel, and fortunately find that the rust has not damaged the heavy metal inner valance which joins the front chassis legs to the deformation panel which is also sound. The "washer bottle" panel which joins the front of the cab floor to the inner valance needs surgery and replacements are not available. The inner screen surround is also bad in places, and available but I like a sheet metal challenge and would prefer to retain as much factory fitted/primed metal as possible especially when it is retaining some of the relationship between A pillars and airbox. Also I gather the replacement lacks the 6 lugs that secure the dash and my originals were sound. So some pics of the repairs to said panels; Inner screen surround corner repairs.jpg

    Below air box to surround repairs with primer, note state of the top flange yet to be done. I guess most of the damage to front panel and these 2 behind all down to leaky windscreen seals not being fixed properly. So if yours is dodgy do not wait for the brown streaks inside!!

    Inner screen surround to air box repairs.jpg
    Washer Bottle panel repairs including one for the base of the N/S A pillar which was not holed but a bit weaker after grinding and rust killing. Washer bottle panel repairs.jpg Hole punch.jpg
    This last one shows my DiY 1" hole punch kit, sorry about poor focus; a hardened steel boss (actually a piston from a Beetle suspension strut) and a bit of steel tube ground to present 2 high points on opposite sides of the diameter, method - mark metal panel and drill 2x7mm holes opposite sides of diameter, clasp panel between boss and tube in vise with high points in holes and squeeze to shear out a nice penny washer! So here is what the underside now looks like with repairs above valance, sealed and painted:
    Washe bott panel finished.jpg

    Next the front panel, lots of prepping holes for plug welding + inside and front of airbox scotchbrighted primed and finished in RAL 5024 Pastel Blue which is the way we are going for all below the bulge. The IGP front panel (which came with this abandoned project) did give me a scare on first fitting as it did not seem tall enough to fill the distance between the valance flange and the inner screen surround lip, however when finally stretched in place over the A pillars and with top and bottom edges clamped, all was well. Before that final fitting the A pillar and mating flanges had 3 coats of Bonda as there is little welding after fit. I use weld through primer wherever there is plug welding to do. So the new front fitted and bare metal primed, you can see the Pastel Blue peeping through the indicator holes. I will seam seal all the joints in a few days and give the joints another coat of paint. New front fitted.jpg

    Flagging a little now but there are a couple of important little panels at the base of the A pillars which close the void behind the bumper mount. I guess half hidden by the bumper ends, but they are double curvature and form the bottom front corner of the cab door opening so I spent some time getting the shape right using a template cut to the shape of the door lower front edge. I have still not welded the back edge bent over the A Pillar flange and will wait until I have rebuilt the doors and try to make sure I have parallel edges. Here is one of the the little rascals: lower front corner closer.jpg

    Lottie is now sound underside from front to engine bay. There are some horrors at the back end (badly done shunt repairs?) which I will attend to probably next year. Its almost time to harvest and press some apples and over the Winter I plan to work on all the running gear and cab fitments so that all is perfect for fitment when I finally have a rust free and painted body shell.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Aug 7, 2016
    ckandjk, Zebedee, Lazy Andy and 3 others like this.
  2. JamesLey

    JamesLey Sponsor

    Yeap very useful :thumbsup:. Always good to have someone who is a few steps in front of me!
  3. Thanks for the likes and kind comments above. Its almost time to put the covers on the body and set it aside, as the next task is to sort out the rear end where there is potentially a whole Summers work due to bad repairs and rust. I plan to tackle all the suspension/running gear over the winter and have it all ready and painted to refit after I spray the body. First I have to get a better understanding of the available paints. There seem to be plenty of good tips about painting on TLB but most seem to 'gloss over' the actual type of paint used. I have sprayed vehicles in cellulose before with good results even recently with what is supposed to be poor quality industrial paint. I do not have an air fed mask and my compressor has only a 50lt tank and the spend to go 2K or water borne is hard to justify. Grateful for any comment on cellulose and use over Bonda and internally Rustoleum. Finally a photo of the cab interior, hardly see the joins now. I hope to eradicate the Jaffa and go light blue below the bulge, but which blue? the airbox is VW Quinea (Guinea) Blau and the Rustoleum RAL 5024 and I think we are looking for something in between. The top abover the bulge will be VW Pastelweiss L90D. Grateful for any piccies/codes of L90D over a light blue. Cab Floor in Rustoleum.jpg
  4. JamesLey

    JamesLey Sponsor

    Looking really good fella.
  5. Looks crackin!
  6. Merlin Cat likes this.
  7. I used Upol 2K fill-primer and DuPont 2K colour on mine and it's lovely. My gun/air-fed mask/filters cost about £400. If I wanted to, I could sell it all for £300 (I'm keeping it all should I need it again), you can probably hire a compressor for a few £££. The celly looks good for a while, but it doesn't cure hard like the 2K.

    It would be 2K all the way if I did it all again :)
  8. Thanks again for all above, I will investigate 2K further and also do some colour testing on the new front before deciding the final blue. I need to make a servo bracket and weld to a replacement front beam before I transfer the torsion bars etc. I would really love some dimensions from a factory fitted bracket.
  9. JamesLey

    JamesLey Sponsor

    Which mask did you go for mate? I'm eyeing up a devilbiss one which looks good value.
  10. JamesLey likes this.
  11. Another vote for Dupont 2k, I paid £33 +vat /litre which I thought was pretty good. I agree with everything nobby says^.
    2 PAC high build is also wonderful stuff you flat dry and it's really really quick and easy. :thumbsup:
    JamesLey likes this.
  12. Thanks for all the paint input t'will be useful later. Meanwhile prepping all the loose underparts and I read of drama elsewhere when removing drop arms from the steering box. First I found that it was possible to remove the steering box with the arm fitted and fortunately I found the box to be in good condition with no play in the dead ahead position (looks like a reconditioned original) but still wanted to remove the drop arm just for painting. So having squirted the spline area with easing oil the day before, I used a 3 leg puller with a steel ring (DiY piston ring compressor) to keep the legs engaged on the slightly curved back of the arm, torqued it up and then placed the head of the puller on the ground and after a couple of sharp whacks near the boss Drop Arm Removal.jpg the arm dropped off meekly. Note that the drop arm shaft is only held in the box by the roller engagement with the worm so make sure you place the end of the puller on something solid so that it takes the shock load, rather than the worm/roller.
  13. Brazil Brake Servo Bracket I have been prepping a lot of running gear bits ready for a bead blasting session and wanted to get this bracket made to blast as well as the donor sheet of 3mm steel has been skulking around the garage for a while. Many thanks to PanEuroPaul for letting me take measurements from "Desmond" and I thought it worth sharing my diagram of a bracket for the 91x56 stud spacing on the Varga servo: Servo Bkt Diagram.jpg
    Here is a picture of the bracket offered up to the beam, the red arrows indicate what I believe to be the locating dimples for nylon bushes which support the torsion arm needle roller bearings. The Bentley manual warns that they are no longer available, so welding heat must be controlled to avoid damage. I plan to drill a couple of holes in each of the curved flanges and away from the dimples so that I can plug weld as well as seam weld in the normal places. I figure plug welds in shear will make up for any light welds near the bushes. Grateful for any views on bkt position, welding/bearings etc from those in the know. Finished piccies later.
    Servo bkt on tubes.jpg
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2016
    art b and Zebedee like this.
  14. So here is the bracket fitted after careful welding this side and some more behind. Servo bkt on tubes welded.jpg

    When I started this thread I said I would restrain content to the unusual/novel bits but there is just something geekily cool about a line of freshly primed bits that were variously bent, cruddy, rusty and seized and are now on the recovery phase:

    Bits primed.jpg
  15. Nice work on the servo bracket. Looks factory. :)
  16. Hi Martin ..
    How did you attatch the wooden beams to your chassis,
    I'm assuming bolts and brackets..?
  17. Hi Art, Exactly so using the front beam holes in the chassis rails and rear shocker holes plus cut to length sections to fit between the rails front and back and screwed to the beams below. Then on the side tipping towards the ground planks beside the B and C pillars from the beams below to a fore and aft beam along the gutter-line. I only tip the van over a short distance beyond the balance point and rest the planks on a couple of cut to size stumps then wedge supports on the floor side to keep it safe. There is never much stress on the pillars and upper structure. Crude but effective, though it takes time to winch over with an engine hoist.
    Kind regards Martin
    art b likes this.
  18. Nice one ..:thumbsup:
    I think I have it,
    along with the pictures that makes sense :hattip:
    Thanx Martin..
  19. Decided to tackle the sliding door, the very top and bottom both being in a bit of a state. The only bottom frame repair panel I could get was Klokkerholm and just as Fletcher Gillett found in his resto book the bottom flange is almost 1cm too short, fortunately the rust was confined to the very bottom and I was able to cut off the lower vertical section of the Klokker panel and graft to my good frame metal 1cm below the bend. The white arrows show the graft and red arrows the length it should have been, to be of use if more of the frame needs replacing. The panel at the top is an excellent Schofield outer skin prepped to fit to the joggled old skin: Sliding door lower frame.jpg

    Fitting, first I put a fillet of seam sealer into the folds, offered it up and checked dimensions then clamped and did a few tack welds in the joggle, then folded the edge flanges using well padded mole grips for the curved sides and a vice from my pillar drill for the long base flange, using several passes to avoid stretching:
    Clenching sliding door bottom flange.jpg

    The upper part of the door was well butchered by Holsworth, photo below is looking down into the gap between frame (top) and skin. I guess in the 70's they did not have cutting discs, but lots of holes and a cold chisel!! pretty sad to do this to a brand new van, the roof opening was not much better and all hidden under thin GRP and carpet. I plan to tidy up the openings and tack in some metal:
    Sliding door Holsworth butchery.jpg
    exuptoy, paradox, Lord Congi and 3 others like this.

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