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Old September 6th, 2009, 10:41 AM   #1
radiotrib
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Default Two Virgins and a Sawzall
Re:: Living with the Dutch Regulations   

Most of the photos are back now .. there are just a few which still need to be either found or replaced in the earlier posts but I'm working on it ...

Yes ... I decided to restore the photos backwards because most of the people I know have already seen the old stuff ... but I promise, one day, I'll restore almost all of the pikkies and they you can watch ... as a noob hacks a beetle ... with no skills, no facilities, and no machine tools ...

just a passion and the product of50 years of saying "I wish" ....

========== BTW ... I live in Holland =====

I've been trying to make sense of the Dutch rules for a long time. I've had lengthy correspondence with the RDW (the vehicle regulators here in Holland) and I think I finally understand the laws and regulations enough to say that it really is possible to build a VolksRod and stay legal in Holland.

Interestingly enough, you have to build 'a buggy' not a car :)

The rules are a lot more flexible if you follow the prescribed buggy regulations and add a 30x30x3 mm box section stiffener around the outside of the floor pans. After that you can do what you like with the body and engine, but the catch is that the wheelbase must remain the same, and the floor-pan dimensions must not be altered.

So extenders are out. Even a short wheelbase buggy must have a wheelbase equal to the old wheelbase less the amount you cut out of the chassis when you shortened it ... so no extenders or i-beams allowed in any scenario.

But there is a way to do it by shortening the body .. so that's where I'm going ... standard floor/chassis ... standard roof length ... standard ... erm .... well not a lot apart from that :) ...

So, after procrastinating for ages I finally went out and bought some new tools ... and you know what it's like when you get new toys ... You just HAVE to play with them don't you ...


I've never cut a beetle before, and the J-Rod was a 100% pure spaarkever until today .. so we both lost our virginity together .. only time will tell if we can make a long-term relationship .. but I'm up for it if she is ... :)

More when it happens .. but don't hold your breath. I know nothing and I'm learning (read 'making mistakes') as I go ... and I only get 2 weekends a month free, and 5 - 8 hours on those weekends as well .. so it'll be sloooooooooooooooow ....

Didn't do any more cutting ... but I did a lot of marking ...

Here's the original photoshop plan for the body cuts to make up for the lack of early photos ...




... oh .. and it's called the J-Rod because it really belongs to Joshua - my 9 yr old grandson ... it's his 18th birthday present.
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Old September 6th, 2009, 10:53 AM   #2
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Since I can't push the wheelbase I have to shrink the body (hence the vertical cut lines marked out on the door and rear quarter).

The trouble with that is that if you shrink the body ... you end up with a body which is 8 inches too short for the floor pan, and have to either break the rules by shortening the pan sides, or have 8 inches of ledge sticking out in the wheel arch.

My idea (if it works) is to keep the front piece in the pics above, and mount it just as it would be in a standard beetle, and then stretch the front quarters between the A pillar and the beam as much as I reduced the rear quarters and the doors ... Hence the piece I kept.

The spare wheel well and front valance are just about the same depth (20 cm) as the total of the other slices being either removed or added, so I should end up with a V-Rod with the cabin shrunk by 8 inches, a front windscreen/a-pillar/bonnet pulled back by 8 inches, but something that still looks as though the beam was pushed forwards 8 inches ... all on a standard, unmodified beetle floor pan.

The extended forequarter should keep it looking longer, the chop should pull the proportions back from short and fat towards the right look, and a 3 inch channeling job should also help to lengthen it visually.

Still in the market when it comes to normal or suicide doors/stretching the roof widthways/etc. I'll just have to see how successful I am with the fundamentals first ...

But if I pull it off, it will be a Dutch first I think (well I haven't seen any around the forums or roads) ... and it may well open the doors for more radical rods in Holland in the future :)

Anyway ... It's on the way now ... and that's what counts !!

Sheesh - I'm stiff !!! .. all that bending and stretching ain't good for an old geezer !
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Old September 12th, 2009, 06:12 AM   #3
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Default Sawzall Stress Relief

Man ... I was so stressed this week, and I'm off to Spain again tomorrow and out of touch for a weeks work ... so I went to visit the J-rod and .. well ... one thing led to another ...

I just can't keep my hands off that bloody sawzall !!!!






The cutting was OK but that roof was a bugger to lift off for one old, fat git on his own.

Back from Spain .. so ... fire up the sawzall !!!

day 3 - Removed the surplus metal



and tried to see what a 4" chop looked like on the doors ...


If this goes back together properly there'll be nobody more surprised than me !!!
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Old November 28th, 2009, 11:33 PM   #4
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Well, after a long spell in the hospital having my abdominal cavity opened up and rearranged ... followed by a couple of weeks convalescence ... I got back to the shed and set up most of the cross-bracing, and the "third hand' in place yesterday. I work alone you see, so I have to arrange not only bracing, but supports for the roof etc. so that I can reassemble it all. Once it was in place on the B-pillar brace I did a quick trial fit to see if it worked as an assistant.

Anyway ... I was eyeballing the half-roof to see if the third hand was the right height, and took a couple of teasers to show the chop height. I think I'll need a third hand on A-pillar brace as soon as the body's been sectioned.





It looks as though should have all the right-angle and cross-bracing in place this weekend, so there won't be any excuse to go fetch the extra roof and start cutting the body up for the sectioning.
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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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Old November 29th, 2009, 07:45 AM   #5
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

I did some more cutting today ... trying to control a stubborn angle grinder when you have to get into tight corners etc is something I find really difficult. Some of my cuts are so bad I'll be patching the body together for years !!!

Anyway ... having said that ... more cuts today. Got the bracing all done for the back half and cut out the clearances ...


Here it is with the excess removed ... guess where I keep my notes :)



and here with the lot removed.



Next weekend, if I can find some time, I start cleaning up the heater boxes and laying out the roof halves on the A and B pillars.
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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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You can't build a car with a cheque book

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Old December 5th, 2009, 09:59 AM   #6
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

I was practicing my welding today and one thing lead to another ....

IMG]http://www.trib-design.com/images/jbug/build/roof_on_1.png[/IMG]




Was a real grunt of a job trying to do the lifting, aligning and clamping all by myself, but I don't think it's ended up too bad for a tired, fat, 60 yr old grandpa ... eh?

anyway ... I like it ... the 110 mm chop seems not to be too radical, and a nice balance between the true VW lines and a fairly deep chop, As far as I am concerned the roof line came out just the way I wanted it to look ....

Now it's all gone to bed until after New Year ... then I try to get the doors re-hung and the pillars realigned to match the doors .... and after that ... onwards and upwards ...

BTW - I've got a really sweet and special engine coming along too. Thanks to Quintin it's going to be a great runner and a beautiful looker too .... see what he's done with a dremel and an hour or so of tender loving care ... one half done, one half not done for comparison ... I'll post more pictures of his work when he gets it all documented for me. He's going to deliver the engine dyno'd, test driven, and supported by a DVD documenting the build ...

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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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Old January 2nd, 2010, 11:21 AM   #7
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Special day today ... not a lot of words but a milestone moment for the J-bug ...

First fitting ...


Shut lines look reasonable for a marking out exercise but there's a discrepancy in the side swage line I didn't expect ...



The rear dropped into place cleanly ...



and the sectioning gives me the equivalent of a 9 inch extender ... hehehehehe



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Old January 4th, 2010, 08:16 AM   #8
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Woohooo .... I bin a-weldin' again ....

All 4 corners are connected to each other, and the doors hang and swing OK.




Oh .. I just noticed ... In the above photo the front 'arch' is almost exactly in the right place in relation to the heater channels, so you can see exactly where the beam will sit on the finished car .....

... so now a bit of fabrication ... started with a couple of pieces I cut out of the rear window space during the chop ...



... and a bit of cardboard ...




some pie cutting ...





boom boom ....



I really wanted to catch the style of the original window but scale it to match the 'shrunken beetle' look of the car ... I think I'm happy with this effort ...


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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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Old January 5th, 2010, 09:11 AM   #9
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Finished the quarter window shaping ...

Took this unwanted bit from the rear quarter ...



... cut it out and fastened it to yesterday's bit ...



... then fastened it all up to the old window surround ...



After that I had an hour or so to kill so I took a look at the roof swage lines ...

Out of place and a misfitting window surround .. typical 4" chop ...



Bit of pie cutting to the window surround and 2 very long pie cuts to the rear quarter ...



... bit of twisting .. bit of welding ...



At this rate I'll be moving on to the drivers side before the end of the week :o :o :o :o :o
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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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You can't build a car with a cheque book

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Old January 6th, 2010, 10:35 AM   #10
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Not a lot of photos today .. just got the driver's side to the same state as the passenger side ...





... but it was a red-letter day for another reason ... My first knot wheel finally expired ...



Guess I can't call myself a virgin any longer .........
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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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Old January 8th, 2010, 10:59 AM   #11
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Passenger side ... ready for lead !!!!! .... :yes: :yes: :yes:






Vacation's over .. back to my usual, slower pace of working ... It's been a helluva week :) ...
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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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You can't build a car with a cheque book

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Old January 17th, 2010, 08:52 AM   #12
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Rear Driver-side ready for lead ... next time I have to decide whether to do the external lead loading, close the zipper in the roof, or start patching the insides ... I think the roof might win :)




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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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Old February 7th, 2010, 12:00 AM   #13
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Here's the latest progress ...

Ready for marking out - the silver strip is the middle of another roof


Insert joggled and roof trimmed back


Laid in place - ready for welding


Finally welded up ... You can see some high and low misalignment. It's to do with the way I supported from underneath. In places I got too enthusiastic with the roof jacks



Today I'm gonna un-stitch it in a couple of places and raise/lower a few of the worst mis-alignments.
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Old February 7th, 2010, 06:47 AM   #14
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Sorted out the few oddities and finished off the front ...



... then ground the welds down and finished the back ...



Looks like I'll be learning to lead load next week ...
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Old February 13th, 2010, 09:34 AM   #15
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Nothing much different this week ... just doing the lead loading to smooth up the work to date ...

Roof ...


rear quarters ... sorry for the bad focus !! It looks a lot straighter in real than it does in a photo


I think that sometimes I spend way too much time working up close, so occasionally I feel the need to remind myself there's a whole car amongst all that detail ....



Funny eh ?? .. with all those pipes and wires sticking out of its insides, the bug reminds me of how I looked when they wheeled me out of intensive care a coupla months back .....
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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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Old March 13th, 2010, 07:18 AM   #16
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

I decided to take a break from the body for a while ... I've been out of action for a couple of weeks or so .. and last week the shed had a spring clean ... so I'm getting back into it slowly ...

Quite some time ago, I bought a nice little AS gearbox all set up with Porsche rear brakes ...




[It's been sitting around doing nothing for a long time so today I spent all day with a collection of wire brushes, air tools and a dremel ... bringing some bling to Boskoop ...

IMG]http://www.trib-design.com/images/jbug/build/gearbox_half_way.png[/IMG]


I think I'm about 2/3 done. Should get it finished and coated tomorrow ... It's going to be satin finish transparent over shiny bare metal ...
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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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Old March 14th, 2010, 09:21 AM   #17
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

NOt a lot to show for a weekends work .. but better than nothing... eh??

Gearbox is finished and coated



And before anyone mentions it ... I'll be doing the swingarms and retaining rings later ...

I had a little time to kill before I went home so I looked around for something to start that I could pick up next week ...

Last weekend Quintin (the engine man) dropped off a nice little Puma low-profile fan shroud for me to modify. It's got air, and I'm going to be running J-tubes, so the air legs have to go, and then I can paint it up ... so I 'de-legged' it ready for welding and smoothing next weekend ...

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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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You can't build a car with a cheque book

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Old March 20th, 2010, 08:56 AM   #18
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Don't touch your screen - that primer's still wet ...



A few dollops of bondo, a load of flatting down, and a lick of the right paint, and I think I can say I'll have the shroud I want ...
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Old April 11th, 2010, 07:38 AM   #19
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Things are progressing really slowly right now, but I did manage to get a couple of hours free this afternoon so ...

Not long ago I as wondering how people did their b-pillars ... now I think I've found out :)

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Old April 13th, 2010, 01:52 AM   #20
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Is this symptomatic of an ally-and-wire-brush fetish ... I know it's weird, ... but I just like shiny ally ...


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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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Old April 28th, 2010, 01:22 AM   #21
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

The Bimmer died last week (and it looks like there's a big repair bill coming) and there's no way I can get from home to the bug by public transport and still have time left in a day to do anything on it ...

So while I'm stuck at home I'm designing and building the engine telemetry and instrumentation electronics instead.

'Fraid there's nothing much to show but a pile of wire and some little black integrated circuits and stuff ... but somehow, this weekend, those chips 'n' bits just turned into a rev-counter and spark timing calculator ...




... and with a day of javascript programming and another day of photoshopping ... voila ... the beginnings of a fully configurable dashboard simulator ... (sorry - it's slow to load over 'tinternet - but it does get there eventually) - IT ONLY WORKS WITH SAFARI ... I don't need to make it work with anything else right now because I'm still experimenting ..... but if ypu've got safari .............

http://www.trib-design.com/vDash.html

(mouse over the pads to move the dials)

It's really early days yet, but something strange is definitely happening in the Trib Kitchen !!!
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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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Old April 30th, 2010, 12:59 PM   #22
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

I got to the garage and discovered I'd left half my world behind ... so ... in the absence of 'real work', ...
.
.

wire brush and disinfectant ..... ... gotta love Porsche .. they make such nice ally castings ....





..
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Old May 8th, 2010, 01:07 PM   #23
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

When I took off the heater connections from the Puma shroud, there were two nice rectangular holes that got me to thinking ...

Well I finally got round to "doing" instead of "looking" and ended up by building a third brake light arrangement in the shroud .. I'm really not happy with the execution - the finish is terrible and the execution of the job was poor, but the idea's OK .. and hey ... if it was perfect I'd be doing it for a living :)

Here's a video of the lights flashing on ... off ... on ... off ... well .. it's youtube - you get the picture ... :)

YouTube- Volksrod Third Brake Light

EDIT .. I've fixed it up a lot better since the video was shot ... much happier with it now.

Here's the latest version ... http://www.volksrods.com/forum/showp...5&postcount=27
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My Intro/Build Journal - Two Virgins and a Sawzall
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You can't build a car with a cheque book

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Old May 9th, 2010, 08:18 AM   #24
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Today was a playing with paint day ... I did a whole load of test shapes to try out some colours I imagined ... most of them turned out useless ... but I also spent some time getting used to chrome in a can ...

The rear axle tubes are "chromed"



and the front axle is black chrome. I'll do the trailing arms the same, the shocks will be "chrome", and I have real chrome sway bar and steering tie rods to set it off ...

The black chrome doesn't show up well in the photos but it's quite an interesting finish in real life ...


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Old May 15th, 2010, 12:17 PM   #25
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Default Re: Two Virgins and a Sawzall

Sorry but I'm still playing with paint .. I promise I'll get down to some 'real' work again soon , but it's been 35 years since I got serious about shooting a car..

I really love these new paints ... they do the biz without drama !!!! they really make me want to just play with paint again ........... but it's gonna take me as long to get the paint sorted as it will to to build the rest of the car ,,,,,,,




oh ... and those lights in the shroud were just breaking my heart so I ripped out the whole sh|t load and started again ..............................
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