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I have started assembling an Electric Fleet of VW buses that are going to be available for rental in vacation destinations. This 1967 Lotus white is likely to be the first one finished but before I put it back together I needed to add a few windows and a ragtop on the roof. I used a service provided by http://www.Grumpysmetal.com
I will be making Videos on the Electric conversion process soon.
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All right, let's talk about buses. This is the latest one that i got is already painted and so right now, i'm really debating whether i just put it together so 13 window deluxe right, but for the fleet. I want all of my buses to be sambas. Here's the difference, if you don't know what a samba is, this is a hard top right and then the samba is like that one over there it's got extra windows on the top, and then it's got a big hole for a uh for that rack top right.

So there is, i converted this bus. This bus was a hard top to begin with in the very beginning, and so i converted that, but i did it the the hard way way back in the day. This is like almost 10 years ago now i got an original uh parts from an original bus and then i grafted them in there. The whole thing you know, i just did it myself, it's not that hard to do especially now.

Now there are kids that you can buy and you could do it yourself and they have with instructions and the metal is nice and straight and it's new manufactured stuff right. There also is a service that you can just send the bus, and they do it really quickly and instead of cutting the windows, what they do is they stamp on just like the uh factory back in germany used to do right, so i'm really debating. If i just like, i have all the parts to put this back together, but here's the thing the roof is the least uh. My favorite part of this thing of this paint job.

The paint job is not perfect, but it's okay. They uh, they uh. They buffed. It right so this single stage paint this is what cars back in the day used to uh and let me show it to you a little closer okay back in the 50s cars used to be painted with a single stage paint, which means it was just one Coat or two coats or whatever, but then they didn't have a clear coat.

So what they would end up doing is just polishing the paint and then it looks really nice and shiny. So this is a single stage, paint original, you know, lotus white and what they did is they actually already came and sanded not sanded, but they polished the paint right. I could see because there are evidences of like the uh, the buffing compound right and so, except that they didn't do the roof. The roof is still kind of hassle.

What is commonly known as orange peel, which is like bumpy bumpy things right and it's not um. I don't they didn't polish it because well, it's kind of hard to get up there to polish it. As you can see here, it's hard to see it, but here we go, you see that and who cares right, it's the roof. Who cares? Nobody sees it, but it's wavy.

Just nobody does that great of a job in the roof, because well, it's a giant roof, and so i'm like who cares. But i'm thinking that down the line i'm gon na have to make this into a samba, because i want my fleet to be zambas. Those are the most attractive buses and if i want to rent them, you know they're going to see a samba and then this one will be like well i'll. Take that one you know, and then this one's not going to rent as much so i'm like might as well since the roof needs.

Maybe still some work like polishing and stuff uh, and also the dash needs to be polished because it's not as shiny as the rest of the car um. I think i'm just gon na send it in to be worked on and to put the the the the roof the the deluxe samba roof on here. Why not it's already it's already taken apart! It's ready to go right! Uh! If i do a bunch of work and put it together, then when i need to go and do this, i'm gon na have to take it all apart, because it's it's work, you know like it's, it's dirty work, and so you know, if you have the interior, You have to take it off, or else you you know you risk damaging it and stuff. Uh you'll have to take all the seats off and might as well do it.

I don't have any of that stuff right now and here's the other thing that will have to happen. We're gon na have to repaint the roof because well you're, making a hole there and you're pressing the things they're gon na have to go down to the metal, and i mean if it's already not kind, not that happy with the roof, with the condition of the Paint on the roof right, yeah like they definitely did not uh buff it because look you could see. Oh that's what the buffing will take away, what they do it. The way you do it is you you color sander, it's called right.

It's just! You take a really fine, um sandpaper, like a thousand two thousand grit, and then you sign like you, sand it down and you you knock down all the little bumps, all the little bumps on the paint. And then you come back with the buffing compound and then you hit it and then it becomes like glass. It's like really shiny um, but since we have to do that, well, hell might as well just get the roof done. On this i mean: what's the rush right, i'm looks kind of excited.

I want to finish. I want to work on this and finish it and then drive it. It's the first painted bus that i'm gon na have in the fleet you know, and so, but might as well just do it right right. Why not just do the roof then send it to the paint job? It's not that big of a deal to send a bus to the to paint to the paint shop when it's just the roof.

You know it's like it's and then like half the roof is going to be gone, there's a giant hole in the middle and then eight little holes on the sides right. So the body work is not even that much because it's half the roof is gon na. Be gone, and so bodywork and paint should not be that hard and it shouldn't take that long. Any shop should be able to do it.

Even you know the ones that are local to me here uh and it's already prepped or ready to go. You know it's like um, it's all taken apart, i mean it's like it hasn't been put together. Yet i think that's what i'm gon na do. I think that's what i'm gon na do, especially since the turnaround i just talked to to grumpy, which is uh the shop down in uh here in southern california.

That does this they're getting so fast at doing this to turn around in seven to ten days or something like within a week. They can have these back to me and then i could send it to the paint job. So i mean you know before i. I have to work on so many things like i have to get before.

I can put this thing together. I still have to weld some brackets here for the for the uh, for the safaris and i ordered the safaris, but there haven't come and then i have to i there's a bunch of things that i can do while this this is getting worked on. Like do the upholstery and all the seats uh, i have the wiring, but i can't do that until i get the car uh, i could do all the windows. That is a lot of work.

I have all this stuff in here and i need to do the win, and that is just like. It takes a long time. You got ta just put the windows in there. I think i'm missing a couple of in some windows, so i got ta order.

All those i still have to source a few parts, but for the most part it's done. I think i'm gon na do it. I think i'm gon na. Do it all right.

You wan na talk about doing something the hard way. I just loaded this non-running bus into this trailer by myself with no winch, it's uh yeah. It took me almost an hour to get that up there. I just had the only thing i had is one of these straps and i was just strapping it a foot at a time.

It's yeah. It's definitely not the right way to do this uh, but it's up there now we're gon na. Take it to get the roof conversion done. I changed my mind, i'm not just gon na put it together.

I am gon na convert it into a samba. First, then i'll finish it right. So all right, let's go! Let's go to hunting beach. There you go so here we go.

This is at grumpy's and they're doing the roof conversion. There's another sample of these conversions that are done. This they're not uh welding holes in here, they're pressing them in with a special tool that they've come up and even the big hole there. This stuff is not.

This is all just pressed in and banned with the same metal. So this is, i mean once they're done. It's like almost factory correct. It's really hard to.

You know how to tell it. Apart from the factories, factory, quality, conversions, nice and the seat is, there is cool all right, the bus is back, and now it's got a different roof. We're gon na have to repaint, send this to the shop. So we can.

Oh, my god. It pulled the thing over here: we're gon na have to damn we're gon na have to do some here, so this is happened because they press that in there so there's quite a bit of uh pressure that happened in there right so yeah. I kind of separated that in here we're gon na have to fill that up and then when they spray the roof. So i guess the whole bottom here yeah.

So there was some flex that happened, but other than that. There's not a lot of work up here. There's some stuff: not you know they didn't really mess anything else up over here, just a few holes and uh yeah this raw metal right here, because they have to uh, put the innards in there yeah. Oh, it's not so bad over here, but yeah we'll have to fix that a little bit too, when we respray that uh yeah we'll have to do this too, because it's just you know a bit more detail.

This metal goes in here and then it bends up to make this little lip and then it bends down. But it's the same piece of metal here and then it goes up like that, and this is the stuff that the it's required for the upholstery and then the corner, uh yeah, it's with a different metal like that. Originally that's! This is pretty accurate factory accurate. This is how they did it.

Um, look at that and then here are all the nuts where you're gon na install the stuff in there. Here are the other nuts and then this arches burn marks do because they added uh the stiffener back here right and because the stiffener was welded in there. So then they're yeah, so that that'll be fix all with the painting of the roof. This is pretty cool.

This bus now is much it's gon na be much more fun now, and here's all the hardware that comes with this service that they do. They give you the mechanism that goes in here. Uh these. These are uh belt line trims and i think those are the the rails that go in here, which is missing the screws, but we'll get those nice.

You.

One thought on “Last week my vw bus had 13 windows, today it has 21”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars JP jay says:

    22 windows???

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