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Old 07-17-2005, 08:52 PM   #1
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Something even my 345 can Tow

Well, I finally found something the 345 can actually tow...

I pick it up on Tuesday. Could not pass up a great deal on an incredibly clean and well maintained 71 Beetle. It'll tow nicely behind the MH and it even came with a free VW towbar. I've owned several beetles over the years and this one is by far the cleanest I've seen (sans show cars).

Get this, I've been looking nationally and found this one in the next town over. Turns out the owner and I went to the same Elementary School and High School (over 1200 miles away from Louisville!)

Now I just need to figure out how to paint it to look like aluminum.

PS - My 94 VW Golf is now for sale if anyone wants one.
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Old 07-17-2005, 09:57 PM   #2
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Your sure its a 71? (I know that sounds dumb). I thought the reflectors off the bumper brackets was a 1970 only thing on regular beetle. Was it like Oct 1970 build date (making it a 71 model) maybe?

I thing the vent being behind the rear windows was a 1970 was first year as well.

Cool find. Great cars and really starting to come up in value if they are in any kind of shape.
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Old 07-17-2005, 10:12 PM   #3
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How do you know all of this crap? I started running out of room in my brain a couple of years ago. I have now officiall forgotten more than I still know.

On the 70/71 thing..could be. It might also be an "add on" from his parts stash as this guy had a 58' 36hp Bettle (restored) a 66' 13 Window Van (restored) three Ghias (one restored) and all kinds of other aircooled stuff. He wants me to bring the Airstream out to his place so he can see it. We ended up talking for about two hours about cars, RV's planes, our hometown, really a trip. I need to talk him giving up that Holiday Rambler he has for an Airstream.

I know what you mean about the values. The last one I bought was in 89 and I paid $200 for it. Great daily driver for two years, sold it for $500.

This one was a wee bit more than that but after looking at $1000 rust bucket after rust bucket I knew a deal when I saw it. Just had to have it. I think it's part of my new "Simplify" Mantra.
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Old 07-17-2005, 11:05 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swebster
How do you know all of this crap? I started running out of room in my brain a couple of years ago. I have now officiall forgotten more than I still know.

On the 70/71 thing..could be. It might also be an "add on" from his parts stash
hehehe I came home in a 65 356C Cabriolet Porsche. Folks bought a used Sunbeam Imp as a family car. When it gave it up the new family car was a 68 Squareback. The 365 got traded on a 72 914. The 68 Squareback got traded on a 73 412 wagon. The 73 412 I spent riding in the back seat all over the country camping as a kid. It later became my first car. The 412 was replaced with a 82 Vannagon for family duties when I was driving age. My buddies and I then went in on a 63 Bus with the rare rear corner glass with cargo bars but no roof windows. I have never seen another like it.

My second car was a 83 GTI. One of my good friends in High school had one of the cleanest and prettiest Cobalt Blue with white interior 1970 bugs you have ever seen. It looked brand new and those reflectors were his pride and joy. It one several trophies in car shows. Another good friend had a 68 Squarback. I have another friend that he has a 64 single Cab, a 66 double cab and his dad has a 68 double cab.

Guy up the road has a Shop called "Areo Engines". He builds Airplane engines. Did some work for him a few years ago. He was doing some REAL cool stuff to VW motors including turning the bearings 45 degrees like an airplane motor to get more strength. He had a couple motors he build for drag racing he showed me. THEY WERE INCREDIBLE. every conceivable trick you could do. Both dyno over 400 HP he said. He has a oval that he was dragging. Fiber glass tilt front and stripped down. Something like 1200lb. He was in the low 10's with it consistently 15 years ago. Pictures of the thing at half track with the front end off the ground on shifts.

I ate breathed and slept VW's till I took a ride in a 86 RX7 around 89.


I'm betting on a Oct, Nov Build date. Check the drivers door frame see if the sticker is still readable. If hes that big of a VW head he would have probably pulled those reflectors and put them back in his stash if he had put them on. Real ones are getting scarce.
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Old 07-18-2005, 04:13 AM   #5
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You're such an "airhead" (twice over). Sounds like you've had you're share of VW time. There is a great site (a lot like this one) called www.TheSamba.com. There are a few buses on there that match your description. Most are in the mid teens and a few with the vista views (21 window) are up around $30 - $45K (YIKES)

Too bad you can't tow an Airstream with one.
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Old 07-18-2005, 06:01 AM   #6
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Quote:
Now I just need to figure out how to paint it to look like aluminum
steve,

how about the luv bug paint scheme instead? number 53 anyone?

john
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Old 07-18-2005, 06:39 AM   #7
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Nice Find!

Steven,

Nice car! Don't see near as many of those on the road anymore.
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Old 07-18-2005, 06:41 AM   #8
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Curious about tow bar assembly

Can you tell me how the tow brackets mount to the VW?

I thought that VWs had no frame?

If there is no frame then what does the bracket affix to?
I wonder how the brackets will hold the vehicle in case of emergency.
Just curious
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Old 07-18-2005, 07:15 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smily
Can you tell me how the tow brackets mount to the VW?

I thought that VWs had no frame?
VW Beetles have a torsion bar front suspension. Most towbars mount to the lower torsion tube, usually with a quick-disconnect attachment.

While Beetles are somewhat unibody in construction, the "transmission tunnel" which runs though the middle is made of fairly thick steel. The front suspension connects to one end of it, and the transaxle connects to the other end. The motor is supported by the transaxle.

I would still have my '68 Type 1 if it had AC.

Tom
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Old 07-18-2005, 08:18 AM   #10
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"Now I just need to figure out how to paint it to look like aluminum..."

Steven,

a couple of days ago somebody posted a link to www.alsacorp.com and their products (e.g. metal-look-a-like-paints). Esp. their ghostchrome paint looks as if it could mimik an "alumi-bug" http://www.alsacorp.com/products/gho...t_prodinfo.htm.
sample pic:



Seems to come even closer to the aluminium look than the Inland RV argosy - jmho.

Good luck - and please post "after-pics" !

Martin
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Old 07-18-2005, 09:00 AM   #11
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Quote:

Can you tell me how the tow brackets mount to the VW?

I thought that VWs had no frame?
The Standard Beetles have a tow bar which bolts with "u clips" around the lower torsion bar tube (front suspension). This one is a Super Beetle with MacPherson struts so there is a bracket that stays on the car and the bar connects with pins and clips.

I started looking into Beetles as a simple, lightweight, inexpensive TOAD.

Martin - that paint is amazing. Almost seems like an alternative to polishing. I wonder how much that would cost for 34 feet or Airstream Motorhome and ten feet of VW
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Old 07-18-2005, 09:19 AM   #12
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I am envious of your new car. Having owned every VW model up to the Rabbit I still have the itch. Do you need to disconnect the driveshaft or anything else to tow? I had thought of getting a Vanagon to use behind our Chummy and that way I could still get our bikes on board. There may be some connection to the classic AS disease and VWs.

Drive safe and use it well.
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Old 07-18-2005, 10:50 AM   #13
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Finished my TOAD this weekend

I finally completed my Tow bar assembly on my Saturn this past weekend.

With all of the bolts on the car ( 8 bolts) and horror stories I have heard from seasoned Airstreamers, Like looking out the mirror and see your toad coming around for the pass, I have heard of seperation of the hitch assembly from MH due to stress on welds among other stories. It seems that TOAD seperation is more common than one would think or hope. Especially since the tow ratings for AS MH's is not very high to begin with.

I find myself a little skeptical of the VW tow assembly.
I would probably go for it if I were in those shoes but, after researching all of the info I could find on tow bars and brackets while doing my tow bar assembly, it seems that this VW setup does not fit the bill. I guess the weight is dictating the bracket properties. Maybe the VW is light enough that all of the extra attachments is not necessary.
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Old 07-18-2005, 01:09 PM   #14
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Great Bug Steve....mine as you may know is a bugs big brother..78 911sc coupe. Over the winter I was working on a few minor repairs on it...the first real issues I have had in the 14 yrs since I bought it. Both repairs toalled less than 100 bucks in parts. Rebuilt the alternator and reg, and added a new fuel accumulator. The car runs like a scalded dog, better than ever now. In my pst though-
I have had a
64 Karmann Ghia, 68 Vanagon Camper bus, and a long line of sports cars and weird rides. Some (that I can remember) include-
59 TR3
63 Pontiac Tempest 326
63 Valiant
59 Corvette
66 GTO
59 Chevy Impala, 63 Chevy Belair
63 Chrysler Imperial
70 Fiat 124 Spyder
67 Alfa Romeo Duetto
81 porsche 911 Euro Targa
57 Jaguar XK140
59 Morris Minor Sedan
72 Fiat Coupe
two 70's model Ford Vans ( built them into campers with beds, etc)
67 Jeep Wagoneer
55 Jeep Wrangler
and quite a few more....
I used to buy em fix em up, drive em a while and then sell.
My 78 Porsche though has been a "keeper", as it seems is my Airstream 280.
I now have the Saturn toad, and recently bought a 92 Saturn SC2 from a government auction. Its a sweet little car.
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