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Thread: The Karmann Ghia thread

  1. #71
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    Nov 2001
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    1,421

    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Figment View Post
    Project update: The spin-around-the-block revealed that the front end needed some attention. I may need a new steering box ultimately but for now I'm just doing ball joints and adding a swaybar.
    IIRC, some VW steering boxes could be adjusted for tolerance. Not to be overdone, I am sure there is a spec for maximum readjustment, so take care and find out before overdoing.

  2. #72
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    Dec 2001
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    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Quarterly-ish update.
    Sorry about the image size, can't seem to remedy that right now.



    Those bumpers were a stainless-steel ladydog to install. The PO had a lot of rust-repair bodywork done, seemingly with the intent of a porsche speedster style no-bumpers end result. The bumper mounting points were mostly gone, those that remained were way out of whack.
    They do totally make the look of the car, though, IMHO. It seemed really stumpy-ended without them.

    Yes, I tightened the steering and added some caster to improve the handling.
    I picked up some secondhand seats. They're actual KG seats, but I don't love them, and since I'm not slavishly restoring to original I'm on the lookout for something better that I can mod-to-fit.
    After a lot (no really a LOT) of fussy carb-tuning that just couldn't seem to remedy an over-rich condition I realized that each carb had its own unrelated hidden issue. Both replaced, now SO much better. Still not as much power as I'd like, but at least it's tuneable now.

    Next up (now that winter is nigh): The interior. Apart from the seats it's all bare metal. I've been putting it off because the glass has to come out for the headliner.
    A bit of cut-and-weld here and there to reestablish the full course of the heat channels.
    And then I think some drop-spindles for the front. Getting the front bumper installed helped it look like less of a taildragger but still I need to get the nose down.
    No adversary is worse than bad advice.

  3. #73
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    Apr 2010
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    14,318

    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Just fill the gas tank.

  4. #74
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    Dec 2001
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    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Yeah, good reminder. I've found myself out of gas on the side of the road twice already.
    No adversary is worse than bad advice.

  5. #75
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Central Coast, Ca
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    19,965

    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Just went through this thread, and that's a nice car. I built a lot of VW engines back in the 70's and as I think back on it, they were almost fun to do, definitely profitable. A 1600 with a big bore kit and some late model dual port heads and they will go really well. I still have an old 1600 engine out behind the shop on the bone pile, but it may have returned to the earth by now!
    You have to have two floor jacks, one for the body and one for the engine. About 20 minutes to remove or install it... That is the secret to working on old VW's.

    Now, about that fan belt...


  6. #76
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    central cal
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    12,610

    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Canoeyawl View Post
    Just went through this thread, and that's a nice car. I built a lot of VW engines back in the 70's and as I think back on it, they were almost fun to do, definitely profitable. A 1600 with a big bore kit and some late model dual port heads and they will go really well. I still have an old 1600 engine out behind the shop on the bone pile, but it may have returned to the earth by now!
    You have to have two floor jacks, one for the body and one for the engine. About 20 minutes to remove or install it... That is the secret to working on old VW's.

    Now, about that fan belt...

    Nah. We did my buddy’s dad’s super last year. Just one jack is plenty.

    Peace,
    Robert

  7. #77
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    central cal
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    12,610

    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Figment View Post
    Quarterly-ish update.
    Sorry about the image size, can't seem to remedy that right now.



    Those bumpers were a stainless-steel ladydog to install. The PO had a lot of rust-repair bodywork done, seemingly with the intent of a porsche speedster style no-bumpers end result. The bumper mounting points were mostly gone, those that remained were way out of whack.
    They do totally make the look of the car, though, IMHO. It seemed really stumpy-ended without them.

    Yes, I tightened the steering and added some caster to improve the handling.
    I picked up some secondhand seats. They're actual KG seats, but I don't love them, and since I'm not slavishly restoring to original I'm on the lookout for something better that I can mod-to-fit.
    After a lot (no really a LOT) of fussy carb-tuning that just couldn't seem to remedy an over-rich condition I realized that each carb had its own unrelated hidden issue. Both replaced, now SO much better. Still not as much power as I'd like, but at least it's tuneable now.

    Next up (now that winter is nigh): The interior. Apart from the seats it's all bare metal. I've been putting it off because the glass has to come out for the headliner.
    A bit of cut-and-weld here and there to reestablish the full course of the heat channels.
    And then I think some drop-spindles for the front. Getting the front bumper installed helped it look like less of a taildragger but still I need to get the nose down.
    The nose down helps with the pushing, too.

    Peace,
    Robert

  8. #78
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    Jun 2003
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    Central Coast, Ca
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    19,965

    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Quote Originally Posted by amish rob View Post
    Nah. We did my buddy’s dad’s super last year. Just one jack is plenty.

    Peace,
    Robert
    If you are "we" but if you are me, two is mandatory.
    How else can you move them from one side of the shop to the other?

  9. #79
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    Mar 2010
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    central cal
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    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Canoeyawl View Post
    If you are "we" but if you are me, two is mandatory.
    How else can you move them from one side of the shop to the other?
    Ah, yes. Me is VERY different.

    We used an old skateboard to roll the engine around. Hehe.

    Peace,
    Robert

  10. #80
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    Apr 2005
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    Hills of Vermont, USA
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    23,996

    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Canoeyawl View Post
    If you are "we" but if you are me, two is mandatory.
    How else can you move them from one side of the shop to the other?
    A Fiat 600 motor is even easier - 2 guys pick it up & set it on a milk crate.
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

  11. #81
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    Dec 2001
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    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Motorcycle jack.


    It grabs the transmission forks nicely and up goes the whole back end. A pair of jackstands later, it's free to cradle the motor by the pan.
    Worth every nickel.
    No adversary is worse than bad advice.

  12. #82
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    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Thanks for the update-nudge, Leikec...

    Quote Originally Posted by Figment View Post
    Next up (now that winter is nigh): The interior. Apart from the seats it's all bare metal. I've been putting it off because the glass has to come out for the headliner.
    A bit of cut-and-weld here and there to reestablish the full course of the heat channels....
    A bit of cut-and-weld, of course, became more than a bit once I actually dug into it.
    Part of me understands why the PO did what he did... he was making a summer-only toy, saw no need of the heat channels that run through the body of the car.
    A much larger part of me, however, thinks that it was just plain DUMB to not do it right while he had the body off the pan. The half-assed patch they did was only marginally less work than the proper repair would have been, all they saved was a few hundred $ worth of repopped sheetmetal. Absolutely asinine corner-cutting.

    So I've spent the past few months first undoing that patchwork, and now redoing it correctly. In retrospect it would almost have been worth taking the body off the pan to make it easier, but not quite.

    I would say that I'll finally have all of that done tomorrow and can finally put the welder away for a while, but **** happens and it looks like I'm spending tomorrow replacing our dishwasher instead of playing in the garage.
    No adversary is worse than bad advice.

  13. #83
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    Dec 2009
    Location
    Frankfort, MI
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    6,368

    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Figment View Post
    Thanks for the update-nudge, Leikec...



    A bit of cut-and-weld, of course, became more than a bit once I actually dug into it.
    Part of me understands why the PO did what he did... he was making a summer-only toy, saw no need of the heat channels that run through the body of the car.
    A much larger part of me, however, thinks that it was just plain DUMB to not do it right while he had the body off the pan. The half-assed patch they did was only marginally less work than the proper repair would have been, all they saved was a few hundred $ worth of repopped sheetmetal. Absolutely asinine corner-cutting.

    So I've spent the past few months first undoing that patchwork, and now redoing it correctly. In retrospect it would almost have been worth taking the body off the pan to make it easier, but not quite.

    I would say that I'll finally have all of that done tomorrow and can finally put the welder away for a while, but **** happens and it looks like I'm spending tomorrow replacing our dishwasher instead of playing in the garage.
    Yikes! Sounds like a job...

    Jeff C

  14. #84
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    152

    Default Re: The Karmann Ghia thread

    The convertibles were awesome . . had two gun metal blue ones.


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