Ploon's Aircooled VW Site
1997 pictures
First step to a healthy bus is cutting out all the rusted metal. Make sure you know which part you are cutting away. The metal above the rear wheel well is made up out of 2 layers, you only need to relpace the outer layer!
Next you buy some replacement panels ( and you make sure they overlap about 1 cm. Next you get a special tool that presses the extra metal a few mm backwards, so you can slide it behind the original metal. Now you drill 4-5mm holes in the original metal. About 2.5cm apart.
Buy/hire/loan a Mig welder and make sure you know how it works. Practise on some of the old metal. It's easy to weld through thin metal!
Position the new metal in it's right place (tripple check this) and make sure it is clamped down.
Start filling the holes in the old metal. The new metal behind it will now be bonded with the new metal. Take your time and give the metal a change to cool off, before you do the next hole. Don't work from one side to the other, do a hole on a the left and then one on the right. This prevents warping of the metal.
The engine
The engine was leaking oil everywhere. We took it out and replaced most of the gaskets (we didn't split the case, but the rest got replaced/cleaned)
A tune up was next along with some new oil, spark plus, plug wires, a bosch blue coil and Pertronix Ignitor magnetic points in a bosch 009 distributor
The front window
One of the typical rust points on a baywindow bus are the lower corners of the front windw surround. The problem is the fact that the rubber starts to shrink after a few years. This makes it possible for rain water to be pushed under the rubber when you are driving. This water will start eating it's way down until the entire front panel of the bus is coroded. It's wise to replace the rubber as soon as it starts crackling. A new rubber is cheaper than a new front!


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