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Old July 15th, 2012, 10:12 PM   #1
59CaliforniaDays
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Default '65 VW Splitty!

New to restoration, done only minor work so far, but you gotta start somewhere. Got a '65 Deluxe, 13-windows and want it done in a year, good goal for still being in high school.


Ground out floor and took all the wood off, getting ready to take the windows out, got 10 out already and just need 3 more off. Undercarriage is rusted, not beyond repair though!

Currently has a re-built transmission and engine, but due to time sitting and dusty climate doesn't run now. Need to either swap or upgrade the transmission for faster speed and drop the engine it has in now, 1900cc, put a 2100cc in for roadtrips

After I'm done taking everything out of it I have no clue what to do!! Need some help on what to do next!!
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Old July 15th, 2012, 10:48 PM   #2
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Welcome to the forum!

A '65 bus is a great platform to start with, and what is visible in the pics doesn't look too bad. Of course it may look different underneath where you say there is rust etc that needs to be addressed

Anyway, you ask what to do next? In my honest opinion (and I tend to be long winded, sorry) I think you need to keep it really simple at first. What I mean is, do enough to get it running so you can drive it and enjoy it.

Too many people out there start out with the greatest intentions and the neatest ideas to modify or create something then they lose momentum and end up not finishing that project.

That is not a dig on anybody, just reality. Life sometimes throws a wrench in an otherwise sound plan. It has happened to me a few times, and many others on this site.

I think that if the tranny was rebuilt a few years ago, change the fluid, check all the seals and gaskets and leave it alone for now.

Go through the motor and get it to turn over again. It is probably nothing more than a carb rebuild and general tune up to get it running. Sure you won't be setting any speed records right off, but you will be driving something that YOU built/fixed. There is nothing more satisfying than that.

Once you start driving it everyday to school and to work and just around town, start making it yours. Most things can be done to this bus while it is still driveable. This will also give you time to research how you want to do something. For example, there are many different ways to lower a car (or bus). However, some of those ways will give you some additional side effects that you may not want (handling issues, tire wear, premature wearing on components)

Since you have all the windows out, get some new rubber, treat all the areas around where the windows go, paint it, then put them back in and drive that splittie!

There are (of course) pages of things that can be done to that bus. Bottom line, make it yours. It will be hard to know what you want to do to it unless you drive it everyday and get into it. It is hard to get into something unless it is part of you everyday. A project sitting in the garage is too easy sometimes to "walk by" and put off for another day.

Again, welcome to the forum! I will definitely like to see what you do with this, and there are alot of others I am sure that will be here to see how this develops (and you too)

Some advice for the forum: Search and read other threads. If you have a question on something, odds are someone else has had that question already and it has been answered. Look for it.

Expect some harrassment. It's our way of seeing "who you are".

And if you decide you are not sure what to do with the bus, give it to me I am sure that I can come up with a few ideas. I don't have a bus yet........
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Old July 15th, 2012, 11:21 PM   #3
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Thanks man! I was going to let it sit around and drive a replacement till she was all done, but I'll be sure to get it to start before school starts and drive it! Quick question, its really loud, like harley-davidson loud. I was curious if thats just a mechanical issue, exhaust issue or I just need to put some muffling-foam in the engine compartment?? I'll put up a video on youtube tomorrow sometime to show you how loud it is and maybe just see real-time how she looks.
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Old July 16th, 2012, 06:57 AM   #4
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Loud is the pipes, mufflers or lack of.
I like loud.
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Old July 16th, 2012, 11:15 AM   #5
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Take some pics of your exhaust system. It could be just the exhaust that you are running, or maybe a hole in one or more of your exhaust gaskets. I have had that happen a few times. Changes the exhaust note in a horrible way and makes it loud, but not in a good way.
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Old July 16th, 2012, 01:30 PM   #6
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Unhappy Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Took some pics of the exhaust along with other stuff. Looks like he straight-piped the exhaust.


Leaks really bad

Also got some pics of the damaged body, mostly due to rust



Ground out the rest of the floor

Is it beyond repair?? I really want to get it done I just need to get the tools+money but if it isn't worth it I can sell it and get another closer to being finished
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Old July 16th, 2012, 01:35 PM   #7
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

d3ghia gave you some really good advice. Around here, we would have that thing running in a day and be driving it. We like to go through all the brakes and give them a good tune-up. Stopping good is more important than going faster.

The loud exhaust could be bad muffler or lack thereof or it could be as simple as a j-tube coming out of the header (if so equipped)

Throw a quick paint job on it and drive it. Lower it and all that later. If that engine is a 1900cc (1915?) then that is more than enough to push that box down the road. The difference between a 1915 and a 2110 is minimal.
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Old July 16th, 2012, 01:41 PM   #8
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Should I work on the actual body, get all the rust off and replace the broken/non-salvagable body pieces before I start driving it?
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Old July 16th, 2012, 01:50 PM   #9
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

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Should I work on the actual body, get all the rust off and replace the broken/non-salvagable body pieces before I start driving it?
That's up to you. You'll have to do something with that front floor. Many people (including myself) drive them ratty.I only have two requirements for a bus...1) it must be mechanically sound, 2) it must have safari windows
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Old July 16th, 2012, 02:00 PM   #10
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

I think I'll get it running and work out all the engine/transmission kinks before school starts then get her fixed as I go down the road. Thanks for the advice man!
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Old July 16th, 2012, 02:12 PM   #11
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

A driving project is always better than one that doesnt drive. Those tend to sit for ever never being touched. Get it driving, mechanically sounds, then work on stuff that can be fixed in a timely manner. Thats what I am doing with my 66. I am also stock piling parts for when it is down for more tyhan one day, I can thrash on it and get it all done.
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Old July 16th, 2012, 02:17 PM   #12
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

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That's up to you. You'll have to do something with that front floor. Many people (including myself) drive them ratty.I only have two requirements for a bus...1) it must be mechanically sound, 2) it must have safari windows
Bugdust speaketh the truth! Make it work first, make it pretty second! The way he welded the J tube to the header is gonna be an issue when you ever have to take the exhaust off.

Here is my ratty bus ('67 13 window deluxe) Ratty visually, but runs, drives and stops great. Hell, it even has four wheel disc brakes!
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Old July 16th, 2012, 02:25 PM   #13
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Man what a sweet ride! It looks pretty clean. I forgot to post this, but my bus doesn't come with a standard transmission, the greasemonkey that owned it before me replaced the original axel+transmission with a Bugs. He did that so the gears wouldn't be right next to the wheel and you wouldn't have the axel turning over when you shifted (He told me this so he could explain why he swapped axels+transmissions) Would this be a problem in my bus?
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Old July 16th, 2012, 02:30 PM   #14
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Mine has a bug tranny as well, no reduction boxes and able to attain freeway speeds!

Split window Bus transmissions have a reversed ring and pinion from a bug tranny due to the reduction boxes. The reduction boxes have only two gears in them, so they then change the direction of rotation. The bonus is that they also change the gear ratio, so they can climb hills easily (just not fast!)
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Old July 16th, 2012, 02:38 PM   #15
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Sweet, just making sure that wasn't another part I had to replace. When it was running it would top out at 55 before the engine started screaming, is that the transmission or is the motor just not putting out enough power? The transmission was recently rebuilt when I drove it and the engine was kept in good condition
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Old July 16th, 2012, 02:42 PM   #16
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

That is probably due to the gearing of the transmission. Some of the later transmissions have a better 4th gear ratio for highway driving.
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Old July 16th, 2012, 02:54 PM   #17
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Ok, cool. Thanks man
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Old July 16th, 2012, 05:44 PM   #18
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

I 'gotta agree with the above advice. Keep her running, put up with our kidding, and enjoy your ride...which is very nice, by the way. I just picked up front floor parts from Wolfsburg West for my '58 Single Cab. Their stuff is good quality as in, 'not cheesy thin crap.' You can always go the 'econo route' of gearing up the bus for the highway with taller (greater rolling circumference) rear tires. And naturally, welcome to the forum.
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Old July 16th, 2012, 08:46 PM   #19
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Thanks man, I'll be stuck in town for most of the time but when I get a chance I wanna go on road trips. Does Wolfsburg West have a website and deliver?
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Old July 17th, 2012, 09:20 AM   #20
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

The Internet is your friend...
www.wolfsburgwest.com

Seriously, who doesn't deliver any more? 234 miles south of you. Might be worth a mini roadtrip!
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Old July 17th, 2012, 11:49 AM   #21
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Oh yeah, they deliver and actually faster than they advertise.
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Old July 17th, 2012, 12:11 PM   #22
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Call Jimmy John's, they should arrive about the same time....
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Old July 17th, 2012, 02:20 PM   #23
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Dude Harley loud RULES..... Git rid of the reduction boxes and get a newer tranny. Just sayin, had a 67 and on the road it sucked untill I did a newer tranny.

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Old July 17th, 2012, 03:08 PM   #24
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

Greg,..........Look up in the above pictures. The reduction boxes have been removed and if you read the posts he mentions that there has alread been a swap for the Type I transmission.

Morning sunshine!

Wolfsburg west for some new floors, sounds good.
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Don't be Fucking stupid.

The bolt is Fucked, it won't fix it's self,
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I know there is a Full Moon, but quit Fucking around.
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Old July 17th, 2012, 05:10 PM   #25
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Default Re: '65 VW Splitty!

One downside of having a ride like yours, is that folks will be constantly waving, giving you a 'thumbs up,' and flashing the Peace Sign. Plus, at gas stations and parking lots, you'll have people coming up and telling you how back in 'The Day,' they drove their VW van with a cute chick named 'Starlight' from Baja to Alaska, broke down in a town called Sunnyvale and swapped home made chocolate chip cookies and a couple of pasta dinners for a serviceable used engine block and help to get back on the road.
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