dipped and etched 1500 'S'

dipped and etched 1500 'S'

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Mesh Grey Seats Part #1

A couple of weeks ago I was in Sydney and boozing with Boris at Vintage Vee-Dub supplies (http://www.vintageveedub.com.au/) when I remembered he had high quality reproduction mesh-grey vinyl available. So off we went to the workshop and after some head scratching, cut off 3 or 4 meters (what ever it was, it wasn't quite enough as it turns out...) and with that sorted, back to Adelaide I went with it on the airplane.

I then took my original front and rear seats off to Jeff's Trim shop where Jeff got out his machete and reduced the trim to it's basic vinyl pieces ready for me to go and sort out the next step.

Next for me was a visit to a local shop I have used in the past to recover my original rear arm rests in the notchback, Dash-Original (http://www.dashoriginal.com.au/). I handed them the original sections of mesh grey vinyl as well as the new roll of Boris supplied (TMI) mesh grey vinyl. The fine folk there said to leave it with them for a few days and the results would be epic!

So what did they do? Well, using this fabulous old Japanese machine:

Which heats up or does something magic to the aluminum strip, it creates the original style heat seamed lines in the vinyl exactly as VW did it back in 1964 (but on a much smaller scale now).

The end result was perfect and I can not thank Vintage Vee-Dub Supplies, Jeff's Trim Shop or Dash Original enough.

I will be getting the last few things in order soon before it all goes back to Jeff to sew it all up into something resembling a set of front and rear seats (the original rear has an arm rest too which is way rare here in Australia).

Saturday, June 11, 2016

TIG Time

You could be forgiven for thinking I haven't done anything for a while. Not exactly the case.

So after chasing some dead ends with respect to getting people to do some minor welding to the car, I finally asked a mate Ben (well known Formula-Vee chap here in Adelaide) if he was up for it and he agreed to do the work if I did all the nasty grinding and cleaning of the metal. Easy!

I started him off on some simple stuff that was out of sight so he could dial in his machine. A couple of holes here and there such as the 2 x holes as shown above which someone had drilled back in the day for a starter relay. I can easily address any imperfections with high fill primer but he knows what he is doing so it's all good.

As you can see from above, some of the nasty mud flap holes are now gone. Excellent. I think I will not be installing mud flaps in the future anyway as they weren't installed originally to my car (photo evidence suggests they were installed later in the 1960's or perhaps early 1970's).

And here are with some tacking in of the replacement metal around the driver's side rear bumper area that was holey. I cut the replacement metal from another 1964 1500 'S' notchback so the curves etc are spot on.

This should be completed this week if we get the time.

Pretty close fit. It's my fault it isn't as tight as it should be but hey.

And this is just a tidy up of an area that the factory left in a bit of a crap state. I smoothed the area down and primed it up again. All good now. These cars were not perfect from the factory that is for sure.

I hope this is the beginning of the momentum to get the car in high build primer and ultimately paint within the next year.

Thanks are also due to Greg Skinner http://the-nautilus.blogspot.com.au/ for arranging the new Koni shock absorbers for this car. Appreciate the collaboration.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

The 1500 'S' in etch primer

The notchback is now in etch primer having been completely dipped in the big tanks this month then painted.

Next step is some lead work under the rear fenders beside where the back seat is, straighten the rear apron and fill some odd holes from relays etc added over the years. Nothing major.
If anyone out there has a pair of front fenders (NOS) available, please get in contact with me.

Saturday, October 3, 2015


Woke up this morning and thought what a nice day to cut the rust out and expose the insides of the heater channels etc.

This is the passenger side rear area that has obviously held some water in the past. I hope this looks a lot better after chemical dipping and rust inhibitor which is to occur shortly.

This is one of the areas on the passengers side heater channel that had a small amount of rust about to pop out.

Yet another slightly rusted area that needed to be exposed on the passengers side.

An overall photo of the passenger side rust situation. Not too bad considering some of the cars I have seen restored of late.

Another photo of the passenger side rear. Note also the factory caulking compound held water and rusted the metal. I may end up lead wiping this once it's rust neutralised.

Bloody holes from mud flaps which were fitted during the 1970's by the owner. While they were genuine mud flaps and looked good (and I have some NOS ones put away), I don't think I will be installing another set to the car this time around.

This hole was for a baby seat mounting point under the rear seat. That will disappear soon.

I was an idiot and installed a parcel shelf many years ago. The 2 x holes drilled into the bulkhead panel will be welded up. No parcel shelf for this car now.

Parcel shelf hole.

This is the only real damage to the body shell. It appears that the previous owner had a minor bingle that damaged the lower edge of the fender and smacked the body slightly here. I will get this pulled out and welded then lead wiped to rectify it. Nothing major.

There was minor pitting to the metal here on the drivers side so I exposed it. I would rather leave this area open for now so when the shell is chemically dipped, all the chemicals get into the cavities and drain out. An easy repair.

More mud flap holes. Wont take long to rectify these.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Bodywork at last

Forgive me for not updating for some time now. My work has been manic to say the least and my home PC is a piece of junk! Anyway, I will be posting some images shortly of the rolling floorpan - yes - it is now rolling and almost complete. I have to finish the engine tinware and manifolding for the original carburettors (to adapt them to the Okrasa Heads) and then the engine will be 100% complete with almost all other items completed and sitting on the shelf.
The body has been purposely left until now. I have had the doors, the rear fenders (NOS) and the front and rear lids chemically dipped, de-rusted and etch primed (doors already shown earlier in this blog). I am still chasing a pair of NOS front fenders to suit this car however if nothing turns up in Australia I will just bite the bullet and import a pair from Europe. I wont rework junk panels just to satisfy a deadline or budget (I have neither a deadline or a budget for the car but you get the idea).
First step was to make up a solid base onto which to sit the car while the works are underway. Thanks to Paul with the MIG, it's all done and dusted and the shell is sitting at a decent working height for 90% of the repairs to be undertaken. Once these repairs are complete I will likely get the frame rolling and use that transport the shell for it's various trips from the body shop and home etc. That's the theory anyway.

Here you can see the shell with the replacement section I will slicing metal from to fix the rust under the back window. Enjoy the images. More to follow soon once I get a new PC!



Saturday, January 10, 2015

Light Motors LTD, Adelaide


As some of you may know, my 1500 'S' was delivered to and sold by Light Motors LTD which was the main Adelaide VW dealer during the 1960's.
I am looking to have this foil sticker reproduced soon and I know a few other people may be interested in it for their projects. If this is the case, give me a call or email me. I am also looking at having the rear window decal remade as well (applied from the inside - I believe it was a water slide decal).

Friday, December 26, 2014

1997 photo's (or about then anyway)

Recently a friend from Queensland sent me a bunch of photo's that we think he took back in 1997. I was quite surprised to see them and had no idea they existed so thanks Monas!
I had to have them scanned into digital format before posting here so now that's done, enjoy. I have perhaps 2000 more photographs I need to digitise so perhaps over the coming winter of 2015 (when I am bored) I will start to post them up on the blog.
The first image is of the 'S' parked near the Hackney pub (just outside of the Adelaide CBD) looking pretty shiny and nice with a set of genuine Bosch fog lamps attached up front. I still have these spot lights somewhere but they wont be installed on the freshly restored car so enjoy the image with them.

Next up is a picture of Andrews Type 3 panel van.
Yes it's a genuine panel van squareback but with the metal panels removed and glass installed (the original panels are safely put away for this car).
This is an all original paint car and with all the original parts still in place. It doesn't look any different right now compared to back then almost 20 years ago which is excellent news.
Interestingly, the paint combination of Ruby Red with the white roof is exactly how my panel van was before I went and changed it to black when I was young and stupid. And as a side note, I believe that every panel van assembled in Australia had a white roof.

And there is the 1500 'S' again. Looks so shiny in these images and you would be forgiven for thinking I am a nut job for dismantling the car however the images shown earlier in the blog of the rust and issues with the car demonstrate the reasoning behind it. All original and apart from me lowering it a bit (I may lower it slightly for the rebuild too), just about as stock as it gets and featuring a few accessories such as the mud flaps, venetian, reverse lights and knuckle guards. I have since removed and sold all of those accessories as I want the car to feature only performance based products in the future like the Okrasa heads, SPG crank, Abarth exhaust etc. No showy stuff for me moving forward.

And here it is next to Dave P's 40hp beetle and judging by the tail pipes, it still has the 40hp engine installed...

Thanks again Mona's for the images. These photo's capture the 1500 'S' on probably it's last VW outing before it was stored away for 15 years to await it's restoration which is currently well underway.