My Next Project: 1959 VW Beetle


But stuck more often.
I guess I should take some pictures of where I'm at right now. The body and pan are separated. In the first pictures I posted, the body was just sitting on the pan loose. I have the body sitting on a roller cart made just for it (I didn't make it!!!). I modified the cart a bit so that the body will bolt to it and be fully supported. I found the body to be quite rigid. Didn't notice any flexing as I moved it around a few times. Overall I would say the pan is in great shape. I pealed, scraped, and cussed at the original sound deadener stuck to it to get it all off. There was fresh looking shinny black paint under it! The only "bad" area is where the battery sat. It's got rust, but not through, and is a bit soft with weight on it. I'll likely cut it out and replace that section.

We will likely purchase a new rebuilt transmission from EV West that is built with the electric motor in mind. They leave out 1, 2, and reverse gears and modify the shift rails/fork so that it only moves forward and backwards for 3 and 4th gears. They also use different than stock gear ratios for those gears.

I've been pushing kind of hard on the IRS swap, but I'm not getting much feedback on it from John. John has the idea of just putting around town in this car, going back and forth to his office. The motor we want is rated at 120 HP. The stock engine is 30-40 HP. We can't expect the stock suspension to handle 3 times the power and keep the car pointed in the right direction. But it's his call and less fab work on my end is ok with me.

For the front, he's been talking to a local shop that build a beam front end already set up for 2" drop and better handling. Should be bolt in.

I just wish we could get all the motor parts ordered!


But stuck more often.
Time to update this project as well. The bug as been at the paint show for twoish months and looking good. I actually thought it was in great shape to begin with, but these guys found a ton of issues that needed to be dealt with. The passenger rear had been hit at one time and a poor repair was done. The hood (engine end) wasn't even close to close to fitting right. I think they said they moved it all over about an inch. The fenders all need work. We then added a later model fuel fill door. This is where the charge port will be located. They filled in a bunch of extra holes throughout the body and did some general clean up and resealed all the seams. It's now ready for paint. That should be done today or tomorrow and then cut and polish.


Parts are finally showing up too. My family made a trip to Huntington Beach last week so we scheduled to have this swing arm transaxle built and ready for us to pick up while we passed through Riverside. It's a "superstreet" build, but modified to meet our needs. It's now a two speed with the stock 4th gear ratio and a slightly lower 3rd gear, 1.41 if I remember right.


John went back to EV West and got them going again on their conversion kit. It finally showed up. I haven't opened them yet, but looking at the boxes I'm sure I'm in over my head. That's never happened before!


So I need to get in gear and sandblast, prep, and paint the pan this week. There is also a floor repair where the batter was that I need to make. Then install some sound deadening mat. I'd like to do all that this week, though it will take a miracle. The family is going to see grandma and grandpa this week so that will give me some alone time. Hopefully it will all come together pretty quick after this. I'm already WAY ahead of the last car build.