Ploon's Aircooled VW Site
Ploon's bus '99

Here are some posts i made to the eDuBs mailinglist (www.edubs.net)
They can give you a good idea of what i've been downing to the bus lately

29-6-99 we had a lot of rain out here today. at 15:00 i finally tracked the owner of the barn i used to use to wrench in down. helped him move some caravans and now i've got a dry spot to wrench ! i first pulled the engine. did it on my own and the use of one of those devices you would normally use to cart pallets around. this is an ideal tool to support the engine when you unbolt it. just remember to undo the throtle cable :-) (took me 5mins to spot that :-) after that the firewall had to be unbolted, so i can pull the tank (it's a baywindow bus). i finally undid the last of the 6 bolts, but it still would not budge. turns out that there are 2 more screws in the bottom of the firewall. so now i can see the tank, but the 2 straps that hold it down are impossible to unbolt. the each have a 5cm long threaded end, which bolts to the chassis. there is so much rust on the thread that i can't unbolt it. anyone got any tips on this ? could i just cut the straps? anyone got a fix to put the straps back together ?
30-6-99 got the fuel tank out today first i broke a pipe wrench on the bolts that hold the straps down so i cut the straps. then the tank is glued to the chassis next problem is the small hole this enormous tank has to go through once i had it out i could get a lot of rusty debris out (could fill the cap of a spraycan with a 1cm thick layer of debris) there is rust all over the inside of the tank will try to find a new tank at the autoparts store tomorrow at 1 point i drove the beetle, which was full of tools, in front of the barn the old block from across the road aproaches me and askes if he could take it for a spin round the barn, just for old times sake :-) he said he had some old 6v spotlights from his old beetle somewhere and we would dig em out for me. i wonder if he remembers and what he will come up with.
2-7-99 now that the engine is out i have good access to the gearbox and the axles. i just found out that the rubber boots near the CV joints are already broken again! (i replaced them last year!!) i've got to 2nd originals right here and 2 more on order. what i need to know is: where do i fit the smaller part in relation to the axle. one end has a ring that will bolt to the CV joint, the other end has to be clamped around the axle. there are 2 ridges on the axle. should the end of the rubber be between the 2 ridges or before the first one ?? last time i put them between the 2 rides, but the boots has craced in the middle, possibly due to the fact that they are streched to much
5-7-99 hi still no tank cleaning kit in the mail today :-( so can't put the tank & engine back in. decided to fit the tracktion bar at the front. i got through the last MOT without it, but i didn't want to run the risc again. to new 2 hours to fit them 2 f#ck*ng clips!!! plus it took half an hour to loosen 2 of the wheel nuts on the right hand side. it's nice to know you can borrow some tools designed for use on farming machinery. my back still hurts from just lifting that spanner :-) got to start work at the intern place tomorrow, so i'm back to working evenings on the bus. just hope i get it all ready in time for BJ (i might leave the stereo refitting till after BJ)
9-7-99 i just put the fuel tank back in the van. i used some kind of diluted fosphoric accid to remove the rust. works great!! next up are the CV joints (need new rubber). hasn will help me on tuesday with the engine that needs to go back in and then all i need is a new set of wipers
12-7-99 this hot weather and assembling CV joints doesn't match. when i finally had the last ring on the axle (holding the inner part of the CJ joint on the axle) and i was ready to scream "yesss", i saw this ring lying on the work bench, it should have been on the axle as well "doh" :-( i've got them all assembled right now, so now all i need is some extra grease and i can put them on tomorrow (got the day of the fix the van)
13-7-99 put the tank back in last weekend so hans came over today to help me put the engine back in. the bolt that holds the oil filler thingy to the alternator stand was loose. when hans tried to remove it, it snapped. he immediately put a cloth in the tube and removed the debris. when we fired up the engine you could hear something rattling inside the sump :-(!! so now the engine needs to come apart completly!!! if you do this, you want to do it the right way and replace some stuff. it's a non stock 1300, so hans opted to use a 1600 shortblock he has at home to rebuild with new heads an cylinders and my engine tin and stuff. so that's the new plan. should be assembled on friday and fitted on saturday. still hope to make Bug Jam with this van. on a positive note. whilst i took the engine out and stripped it, hans fixed the brakes on the beetle. that one is almost MOT worthy right now!! PS: i just find out it's the 13th today. figures :-)
15-7-99 it's been a good day today, my new engine runs!! went up to Hans his place to assemble a new engine today. we used a 1600DP block as the base for this engine that will replace the 1300. first step, steamcleaning the block. it looked a lot better. turns out this engine has been rebuild once before. hang the engine on the stand and strip the exhaust, heads and cylinders off. the old cylinders looked good, so the bearings and cams should be ok. put new cylinders and pistons on, next up where new heads. hans had tried to pull the lower pully once and ended up with a bend pully. so we had to drive down to ives shop to pick up a new one (the sport alluminum type) just before we left hans started to check the new heads (which were still in the boxes by then) and said that Yves gave him 2 left hand heads. so we get to his place and whilst he is washing his hands for lunch he gets me to call Yves. boy did i make a fool of myself :-) (i'd been so overwhelmed by all the new stuff going on before my eyes that i didn't doubt the story about different heads) we had a good laugh about it. so after lunch we picked up the pully and finalize the engine assembly. it ran at 17:30! ran nicly on the first try!!!!! still some problems with a leaky fuel pump and timing, but that will be solved on saturday when the engine goes back in the bus. can't wait
17-7-99 the new engine is in the van and it purs like a kitten. mayor thanks to hans from classic vw restoration and arjen for the help with fitting the engine today. drove only 15km, but it works verry fine. i've also fixed up the paintwork, the divding line between the white and yellow is now straight. next up is cleaning out the inside and refitting the stereo
19-7-99 / 26-7-99 refitted the stereo and cleaned out the interior made the trip to Bug Jam in the UK without troubles
1998