Friday, December 20, 2013

Early Christmas Present

My mom gave everyone in my family an early Christmas present. We each got a unique ornament, and of course mine is a VW Bug. It's awesome, I've wanted one for a while, but I guess I'm just too cheap to buy myself one. And it looks great on the tree. This is the first year I've ever had a real christmas tree, it's great! The smell is wonderful. It's worth the mess of needles. My Christmas has been going great, plenty of snow. (It's fun doing donuts in a bug in the winter) Any one have any cool vw ornaments? Merry Christmas

Sunday, December 8, 2013

La Grande Edition

All right so I finally decided to do a write up about something I found out about my car after I bought it. Originally I bought my car because i wanted a super Beetle, the sunroof was a plus and I like the Fuel Injection because I thought I wouldn't have to do much with it. Wrong! But that's a story for another post.

After I bought it I posted pics of my car on and immediately I had someone post a reply saying something along the lines of "wow that's a great car! did you know that all 1975 supers were La Grande editions?" I was surprised, turns out my car is a relatively rare model. There weren't very many of these special edition models produced.

These La Grande Beetles were produced as kind of a farewell to the super beetle as all super beetle sedans were dropped after 1975. (the convertible ones hung around until 1980). They were meant to be a luxury edition of the Beetle and originally they were really quite nice, they were no Cadillac as far as handling but as far as Beetles go they were nice.

They came in three colors a metallic blue, metallic green, and a metallic harvest gold. The paint was a very nice elegant metallic shine. On the rear deck lid there was a La Grande Edition badge. Also included on all models was a metal sunroof from the factory, and optional at the dealership were pop-out rear windows for more air flow. The interior was a bit nicer than the base model standard beetles as well. All the vinyl trim was leather grained with corduroy inserts. It also came with a wood grain dash insert. The gold bug had a brown interior, the blue bug had a blue interior, and the green had a matching green interior. The steering wheel was also upgraded to a soft "comfort" grip instead of the hard plastic ones.

The car itself had a few upgrades aside from aesthetic ones. For the first time VW introduced the fuel injected engine to the Beetle and it was a standard feature. So in a way it was nicer than a Cadillac as on Cadillacs Fuel injection was still an option. And the Super Beetle also got a rack and pinion steering so that it was easier to steer. Handling was still the upgraded McPherson suspension that all super Beetles came with. With all of these features the La Grande was a really nice car to drive.

My car was originally the harvest gold color which is the color of the bug in the pictures I have shown in the article. And I found out that in the US that is the most rare color. Most of the ones distributed here were the green or blue. The gold ones were distributed some in Canada. But at the end of the year VW still had orders to fill in the US so they build more of the gold beetle to finish out the sales and because of this there aren't that many gold bugs. So mine is a rather rare model. Unfortunately everything that made it a la Grande is gone. The plaque, color, wood grain dash, steering wheel. Someday I may restore it to its La Grande glory, especially since its so rare. But for know I'm just trying to keep it running. My car doesn't drive as well as an original la Grande since its 40 years old and hasn't been cared for properly in probably the same amount of time. But its a work in progress.

Any one out there have a special edition model they want to share? I would love to hear about it in the comments.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Finally a Stock Steering Wheel!

As you probably know I used to have a 1974 beetle. It had a funky tiny little steering wheel with a broken horn button. And I was always on the lookout for a stock steering wheel. Took me a little time to find out that VW produced a new steering wheel in 1972, the modern style steering wheel. But in 1974 they changed steering columns small the old steering wheels no longer fit. I learned that the hard way,  a guy was advertising a steering wheel a while back as a 1973 and up, so I bought it. And it didn't fit at all. So I sent it back and kept searching. And searching. I was never able to find one that was reasonably priced and in good shape while I had my old car. I was able to find plenty 1972 to 1973 steering wheels, but for some reason 1974 and up wheels are harder to find. 

Then I get my new super beetle and it's old wheel was terrible, it was a cheap after market one that really didn't fit well. And the norm would beep whenever I took a sharp right turn. It was embarrassing, and I got a lot of crab for it from my friends. Finally thought I found a stock steering wheel online. I love it! It looks so much nicer, and I can actually see my speedometer, I don't have to look around the wheel to see my speed and fuel anymore! And I think stock usually looks better than aftermarket anyway.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Stuff I found at the car show

One of the things I love most about going to VW shows is sifting through parts at the swap meet. You may go with something in mind that you want to buy, but you never actually know what you will get until you're there. This year I was hoping for a steering wheel and the knobs for the fresh air control, what I came away with was different. I ended up finding a decent pair of rear grab hand
Es and coat hook, this car and my old green one didn't have them, so it was nice to be able to put those on. Slowly I'm trying to put this bug back to stock.

The other thing that I found is a vintage VW dealership accessory, a leather shift knob, you could either get it with the Wolfsburg crest or the VW shift pattern, I was lucky enough to find this one foronly $15. It is perfect, it looks brand new, so now I have three Vintage accessories for my car, the shifter, the center console, and the pop-out rear windows. I love finding things like this.

What cool things have you guys found sifting through piles of parts and junk?

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Last Call 2013

Well the car show was last Saturday. It was awesome, I met a lot of really cool people. I'm planning on writing a post up about one guy, I wish I had thought to get a picture with him, but I did get a picture of his car. He is the original owner of a 1973 sports beetle. Really cool story. I also bought a couple things at the show for my new car. I'll post about those too. But anyway here is a video I made of some of the pictures and video clips I took at the show, hope you like it. Let me know what you think.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Well, its been a while. and I kind of left you hanging, but I'm still her, and so is my new bug. I have been working on it quite a lot and I thought I would finally share that with you guys. I've been doing a lot today to get ready for the last call VW show tomorrow. I guess that's what inspired me to finally post my updates to my bug. So here goes:

When I first got the car the brakes, front bushings, and ball joints didn't pass inspection. So we got the new bushings in no problem. The ball joints were really tricky. We found that you have to have an adapter for the ball joint remover that exactly fits the ball joint or you will not be able to get it out. Luckily autozone has a kit for rent that fits perfectly. So that wasn't so hard.

The brakes on the other hand were an absolute nightmare. It took me forever to finally get them adjusted right. First off I was told the cylinder was leaking, so I replaced it. Then as I tried bleeding the lines I ended up having to replace all the wheel cylinders. I finally got them bleed but the brakes would not work. Me and my dad worked forever on those brakes bleeding and bleeding and the brakes wouldn't work. Well come to find out the leak was still there. It was actually the $5.00 brake switch that was leaking. Well I replaced that and the brakes still didn't work right. I thought I had bleed them enough and I could not get them to work. I thought my new master cylinder was bad. But luckily before I replaced that again. I talked to a guy in my neighborhood who works on old VW's, and he said to try bleeding again, and bleed it through all the way. I decided to try it and I bleed and bleed and bleed and bleed each wheel cylinder. Finally I got the brakes to work, 3 weeks later!

I was finally able to get in registered! That was an exciting day. I've also been batling the Gen light for the alternator. It keeps coming or randomly but the battery still amintains 13 or so volts. At first I thought it was the fan belt. So I replaced that but I forgot to tighten the pulley all the way down. The next day I drove to a friends house and while I was on the freeway the fan belt slipped and wore a hole through the vacuum line next to the belt. I tried repairing it with tape but the belt wore through that too. I stopped at another friends house on the way home, I was dropping him off. And luckily his Uncle who was a mechanic was there and he helped me fix the fan belt using the only tools we could find, a pipe wrench and a screwdriver. Later when I got home I tightened it up properly and replaced the taped up hose. But hey, the pipe wrench and duct tape got me home.

The rest I've done to my car has been pretty simple. I fixed the trunk lock, replaced the missing antennae. I couldn't figure out how to get the plug to the radio so I drilled my own small hole it would fit through and custom made a grommet using bits of whatever I could find and it worked out well. It is really exciting having an AM/FM radio and cd player with a hookup for my Ipod. I loved my old car but its radio was pretty sad. I added arm rests to the door panels and cut the whole for and hooked up the interior lighting. I also put in a stock rear view mirror. They guy had an after market one that attached to the windshield but the problem was he had it so high up, I couldn't see hardly anything out the back window. I also made a speaker shelf for behind the rear seat. You may also recognize some parts from my old car that I moved over, front seat belts, center console, drink holder. I also cut and fit wood paneling for the drivers side out of some leftovers the previous owner had from making a wood panel for the glove box.And then the latest thing I added, today, is the new floor mats. With winter coming up I wanted something to protect the carpet and these were $11 at Autozone and then I cut them to fit. They turned out pretty good. Now I want to get a new trunk liner.

Then today I also washed waxed and vacuumed the car to make it look good for the car show. And my parents were nice enough to let me keep it in the garage tonight so it stays nice. I'm excited for the show, and I still owe you guys pictures from the last bug show, but I'll get them to you eventually.
New Floor Mats

The Arm Rests I installed

Here's the stock mirror I put on

The wood panel for the drivers side turned out good.

I also added a bit of interior lighting

Recognize these seat belts from my old car?

This is the speaker shelf I made.

The center console from my old car.

One of the new bushings we put on.

the new, already rusty, master cylinder.

Here is the replacement vacuum line.

I spent some time researching to put the vacuum lines in the correct places.

New antennae 

Here is where I fed the antennae line to the radio.

Here is how the trunk looks now.

I also found the old jack for the car and greased it, so it works great now.
I also bought a lug wrench so I can change the tire if need be.

My current project is to hook up the stock washer bottle to and electric pump.
This one also came from my old car. I don't know why they had a super beetle pump my old car.

The cup holder fits better in this car.

I also fixed the oil light on the dash, the sensor was bad.

Looks good all polished up.

Clean interior.

I love the modern dash board.

Monday, July 22, 2013

One thing leads to another...

As you can see my car is less than drive able. it's kind of a bummer too, our big VW show was last Saturday and I was hoping to take my red car, I did go to the show, I entered my green one, but I'll post on that another day this week or next. And I was hoping to take it to a parade on Wednesday. the 24th of July is a big day in Utah, it's Pioneer Day, and the little town I'm for always does a big celebration. Someday I'll put it in that parade.

Anyway back to the reason my new one is less than drive able. When I brought the car home I knew it would need some front end work (most super beetles do) what I didn't know was the master cylinder was leaking. I found out when I went to get the inspection done. As I got the master cylinder wrapped up I had trouble bleeding the brakes. found out it was time to race both rear wheel cylinders. Then when I pulled off the hubs I found that all the brake shoes were cracked. so it's been a little frustrating trying to get the car road worthy, especially since I missed both deadlines I wanted to hit. Oh well I'm hanging in there. I'll get Felix running soon.

On another note last Friday was my birthday, my family gave me a couple fun bug related gifts, I'll be sharing those with you guys over the next little while too, whenever I have a spare minute that isn't spent on my car at least.

Friday, July 5, 2013

New Turn Of Events...

About a week ago I found a bug for sale, a 1975 fuel injected super beetle with a sunroof. And it was in amazing condition. As much as i love my little 74 beetle I've realized it will take a lot of work and time to keep it running right. I came to the decision that If the Beetle online was as good as it looked I would buy it and sell my car. Not to mention it was just the car I have been looking for for quite a while. I have wanted a super beetle for some time, from the research I've done there a better car for my needs, I wanted fuel injection for more reliability and more power, and the sunroof is something that I've wanted even before I bought my green 74. And for icing on the cake it even has pop out quarter windows.

Well today, this morning I went to check it out. I was very impressed, the car was taken care of and worked over. The guy I will be buying it from is very nice, about my age, in high school, I felt like he was very honest about the car and was impressed with him too. He even washed, cleaned and detailed the car before I came to look at it, I hadn't even decided to buy it. Any way the car drove like a dream, the difference between a standard beetle and a super beetle as far as steering and suspension goes is night and day, and the body of the beetle is in excellent shape it was taken to a shop and sanded down, had the body work done, and they repainted red and white with the right tools. The car is great!

So tomorrow morning I will go to pick the car up. The plan is to then sell my old car off, my 74 beetle. I think this super beetle will make a much better daily driver. But I'll post some more about all the improvements on a super beetle later on after I get the car. I also want to do a video about my new car, so I'll post that when I get it done. I'll show some more pics of the car when I get it home tomorrow. I'm so excited, its like Christmas all over again!

Monday, June 10, 2013

What came in the mail...

About a week and a half ago I ordered this booklet on I've looked through the classifieds multiple times for 1974 related materials. Commonly I see the sales brochure, the colors sheet, the spec sheet, and occasionally an owner's manual. This one something I hadn't seen before. It is a dealership booklet that shows all the accessories you could get for your beetle in 1974. I decided that maybe it was time to start my collection for my car. I want to eventually get all the factory/dealership books, pamphlets etc. for the 1974 beetle. Something extra to show off at car shows. Today it finally came and I got to take a good look through it.
This booklet is full of all sorts of things. For instance did you know Volkswagen offered a tissue box you could install under the dash? It even has the Wolfsburg Crest on it. A variety of shifters were also available, sport shifters, with leather or wood knobs. Wood trim to dress up the dashboard. And even vinyl lettering or stripes on the side of the car. As I've looked through the book I've realized that, not only will this be a cool thing to show off at shows, but it will help me get the correct accessories for 1974 as I restore my car. If you ever have a chance to pick up something lick this for your car I would recommend it, it's fun and helpful to look through.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Once upon a time in 1974...

A long time ago (to me) a little bug was built in Germany. That was my car. I decided to show a little of what I've found about my car when it came from the factory. Sadly I don't know much about the history of my car yet, but I have done a lot of research into the 1974 model year. I think that 1974 is a very special year. In this year Volkswagen produced the most advanced and safe beetle that would still include from the factory an easy to use carburetor engine.

My car when it rolled out of the German factory was a brilliant orange color, just like the ones in the picture. Orange was a very popular color for that year. This is one of the colors I've contemplated repainting it when the time comes. 

1974 saw some new changes to the bug. One of the features that came was new reinforced and upgraded bumpers, attached with energy absorbing brackets, this was to prevent damage in parking lot accidents. This year also saw a new steering column, one that had a smaller size column, VW continued to use the same column. In fact you can install the water cooled VW steering wheels from the 80's and 90's as well. 

A new comfort feature was added that year as well. The seats were redesigned using the mechanics of the previous year. The previous year was probably the most extensive change to the seats which made them fully adjustable. This year though had new contoured seats for a more comfortable ride. They continued to use these seats the next year.

This year as I said has the most advancements seen on a carbureted beetle. It was a good year, maybe I'm a little biased, but it was a good year for the beetle. The engine had all the bugs worked out and was quite powerful with that light weight car. 

Another noteworthy point about 1974 was the sun bug. This year saw the sun bug, it came as standard, super, and convertible beetle. It came in gold yellow and had either the sunroof or convertible top. It was a neat special edition.

Thanks for reading my spotlight on the 1974 year. Tell me a little bit about what makes your model/year VW special in the comments below. I would love to hear about it.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

My car is an icon

This is a picture of my car on my street. It is an icon for me. My mom loves it because she can always see where I'm at, she just needs to look for the little green bug with the letter P on the side. My mom isn't the only one that can tell where I'm at though.

Yesterday at work one of my coworkers said to me: "i don't want to sound like I'm stalking you, but I know where you live." I had to smile I knew where this was going, I'd heard this before. We had new neighbors move in recently and my coworker's sister was friends with their daughter. She had gone to drop off her sister and saw my bug parked there on the street. 

The beetle is defiantly a recognizable car. There aren't as many on the road any more so each one is unique. My friends are always saying I saw your car at such and such place, or they will wave as I pass them by. It's a hard car to miss, it's very unique in today's world. And for that matter it isn't just my friends that wave, I always love it when people wave or give me a thumbs up. It's not just a car it's an experience, and that goes for any old  VW.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

A bug at the Pi

Me and my parents went to eat at the pi pizzaria in south Jordan Utah on Saturday, we were up in the area and my dad loves their Pizza. Their pizza is excellent with a lot of toppings, but that isn't their only up point. I must say they have good taste in art work too. Right as you walk in the door any VW enthusiast would immediately notice this hanging by the stairs. An excellent portrait of an early model bug, so if your ever in the area and want good food in a nice VW environment: defiantly check out the pi pizzaria.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Electric Washer Pump Conversion, done right

I learned a lot about buying a car when I first bought my bug. One thing I learned was inspect everything. I had asked the previous owner if everything worked, the horn windshield wipers and spray, etc. He told me that, yes everything worked. It wasn't until after my dad and I had driven it home that I really started looking it over I noticed a few unusual things. One of the first things I noticed was the big black button underneath the dash, later I found this was the horn, the button on the steering wheel did not actually work. (Now I think it's because the column isn't properly grounded, but the button and steering wheel were pretty cheap so when I tried to fix it the button broke.

The jury rigged button
The next thing I was curious about was the red button at the bottom of the dashboard. Why I hadn't asked about this earlier I don't know. But anyway I followed the wires, (I didn't want to push it until I knew what it was) turns out it is the button to operate the windshield washer pump. I need to be more careful about word choice, while everything did work, it didn't exactly work the way it was supposed too. Don't get me wrong I'm still glad I got this bug, it just would have been nice to know these things before I bought it.

The old cruddy pump
Well I've been staring at that red button on the dash for long enough. The cruddy old pump that was in my car before finally gave out, so I decided while I'm replacing that I might as well do the job right and hook up the wires to the windshield wiper switch on the column. It isn't as hard as you would think. 

We had an brand new pump and reservoir that we hadn't used laying around, so I decided to use that. I decided to mount it to the fresh air box as it was really the only place it would fit. Then I took off the wheel and got looking at the switch. It is a newer switch we bought probably a year ago. As I got looking I realized the switch not only came with the air pressurized nozzle but also the metal contact points needed for an electric pump. 

The pump has two wires coming off of it one for ground and one for power. I grounded it on the nut that holds the fresh air box in place, then I routed the power wire into the cab by the column, I had it go to one side of the contact points (shown in the picture) and another wire coming from the other side of the contact points that goes to power.

This shows what wires I added on the switch (click for bigger image)

That's all it took, a fun easy fix to an irritating problem I have been staring at for two years. Now I guess I need to get around to fixing that horn button, that's a project for another day.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Fixing the Seat Wobble

It can become rather irritating to have a wobbly seat while driving. It used to be whenever I would go around a sharp corner or go over a set of train tracks in my bug the seat would bounce around and tip from side to side. My friends loved to ride in my car but that was one of the more major complaints. They didn't like the "auto turn correcting seats" as I called them. I did a little looking around on and it didn't take me long to find the problem.The seat had been rattling around in the seat rails because the old plastic bushings had fallen out. Who knows how long ago that happened, It could have been ten years or more. Anyway it was a fairly simple fix. I just needed to remove the seats. 
This is the tab that needs to be pushed
down on 1973+ Beetles
On 1973 and later models the seats need to be pulled almost all the way back then push down on a tab on the center hump. This tab locks the seat in place so the front driver/passenger doesn't pull the seat all the way out. The seat will then pull back all the way out. (On the earlier seat rails the seats will slide forward and out. There will be a little tab at the front of the seat rail with the lever, push this down and the seat should slide the rest of the way out.) The white plastic bushings then easily snapped in place. I realized I only had one of the 6 bushings needed for both seats that was left. Glad I replaced them. 
Two of the bushings were installed on the seats and the third was installed on the center hump. After that I greased the seat rails with some white lithium grease before re installing them. It makes a world of difference and it doesn't cost very much to do either. 

This is one of the two installed on the
back part of the seat
This one slides onto the
center hump

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Sapphire AM Radio With iPod Connection

Hey everybody, I just finished working on my AM Sapphire XV radio to add an audio cable for my iPod. It was a really simple project with very little alteration to the actual radio. The great part is it still maintains the function of the AM radio. Here is a video of the final result: 

I decided to do some looking around to see if it was possible after I installed my radio and realized that the radio itself didn't work very well. I found that the radio couldn't pick up a very good signal. Sadly in my area there is only one AM station with a signal strong enough for my radio to pick up. I wanted a way to have the songs from my iPod played through the radio while maintaining the stock functionality.

After some research I found out how to do it. I added a page to the resource section of the site that lists the instructions for how I made the connection to my radio. Here is a link to  the Radio Conversion for iPod/MP3 Hook-up article.

Thanks for reading,


Friday, March 15, 2013

Veedub Classics New Site

I have a brand new site that I have put together for Veedub Classics. It is still a work in progress but I will have more ability and freedom on an actual website instead of a blog. I will keep posting my blog here on blogspot. My blog will also be posted on the website. For now the site address is if you would like to check it out. Thanks for keeping up on blog posts. You guys are great. Check out my new site and give me some feed back, again it is still a work in progress so some of the pages I have started I haven't finished yet, but I would love feedback. The link to the blog on my site is here: Veedub Classics Blog.

Thanks for reading,


Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Google Street View

This is in front of my house.
Last fall, just after school had started Google maps redid the street view for the Provo, UT area. I found out because I drove past or the Google maps car drove past me twice while I was driving around town over the course of a week. I was really excited about that since my car would be on Google maps two times. I kept checking back and they never updated them... until just this week. I guess it takes a bit of time for them to process the new images and put them online. Just for fun I also checked in front of my house and discovered that my car is on Google maps 3 times in total. That is so awesome. I have been excited about that all day, I'm sure I will be pulling up Google maps to show any one i can. Do you guys have pics of your VW's on Google maps?
This is as I was heading to work.
This is as I was leaving school.