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 Post subject: HORROR STORIES
PostPosted: Sat Oct 07, 2017 2:40 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 29, 2015 7:40 pm
Posts: 210
Images: 55
Location: Ashland Massachusettes
it's Halloween season, so what are your real horror stories of buggy conditions that you have come across.
I live in the rust belt and have owned and sold some scary buggys (about dozen). the truth is that few buggies were built from straight non-wrecked beetles. today 2017 new buggies are but not "back in the day".
for instance I partner with a longtime buddy who deals in cars, any aircooled vw we partner up. he found a titled running dune buggy for cheap. towed to my house for those easy "just needs finishing". broken windshield ,no brakes, electrical issues,etc. I looked at the underside of the buggy to find 3/8 inch plate steel welded to both sides of the tunnel and welded to the rear torsion tube (1965 swing ): not welded to the bottom of the tunnel. the bottom of the tunnel was rusted away, gone. shift linkage and inside tunnel badly rusted and exposed to moisture,dirt, and grime for centuries. a smart person would replace the entire frame. an even smarter person would not have bought the buggy at all. I bought it site unseen in partnership on my pal, who after sale admitted he never looked under the buggy. replacing the frame was not an option, fixing all the problems was not an option either. it was a flip it quick. the tunnel was repaired with a piece of wood siliconed in place. enough electrical work was repaired to make it function. it needed total replacement, due to corrosion and bad grounds. my repairs were done it was now up to him to sell it at a huge profit. any body who had any knowledge of vw buggys could easily spot all defects. anybody that didn't know vw buggys fell in love with the mess. the buggy started with the first turn of the key every time my pal played with it driving around his warehouse with friends. But it would never ever start when an interested cash customer came to buy it. it was haunted . he would call me screaming and cursing me I need to fix it. I would rush over just to turn the key and have it start right up. this went on about 6 times me blaming him, he blaming me for the no sale. finally a local used car dealer bought it wholesale at a reduced price, wholesale to dealers in my state means no warranty that it continues to run or work, all repair on dealer. my buddy and I do not partner on projects anymore. we are still pals but that haunted buggy almost broke our lifetime friendship. bottom line was that the buggy was a horror show and should have been scrapped, but is still out there. it can't be the only one out there, what have you come across?, rusted out? broken welds? crooked welds? no welds? this is to help newbies understand what is out there for sale and also for pure entertainment. I have more horror stories what have you got??


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 Post subject: Re: HORROR STORIES
PostPosted: Sat Oct 07, 2017 11:30 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 29, 2015 7:40 pm
Posts: 210
Images: 55
Location: Ashland Massachusettes
so another long wheelbase tuff tub copy was previously hit so hard on front passenger side that it bent the frame head. 429942984301. the builder of the buggy did nothing. and drove that way causing offset wear to the bias/ply tires. when I took body off I saw damage. a new beam helped, but the buggy still drives crooked to this day.43064305430543044303. oh the horror of used buggys!


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 Post subject: Re: HORROR STORIES
PostPosted: Sat Oct 14, 2017 5:03 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 29, 2015 7:40 pm
Posts: 210
Images: 55
Location: Ashland Massachusettes
my first scary buggy was of course my first buggy. I was a complete newbie all the way. I got into them because you don't see them much. they're cool, and inexpensive, etc. boy was I wrong. the floors were frankenstien floors: patched with everything except real vw panels. with centuries of tar and undercoating. I noticed a few small holes in the bottom of the frame head. being a newbie, I had no idea what was there. so I filled them with windshield urethane. but it took lots more than I expected. I worked in the auto glass industry so it cost nothing but time to me. years later after I forced myself to learn everything about buggys; I realized my buggy was a turd.
now having grown bored with just street driving I was beach driving on cape cod ma. one scary drive to the beach of a 3 hour drive on the highway, I was forced off the highway at 65 mph by some young idiots who were speeding in and out of lanes. they didn't see my buggy and would have collided into it if I had not swerved out of their way. very lucky for me was that the grass division had no guardrail and was flat where I pulled off and then back onto the highway at speed. it was rough but the buggy was set up for offroad and did not crash. but the buggy was hurt. as we drove on the steering felt strange.
while driving in the sand I could see the steering column wobble and shifting in my hands. something was loose. back on the road I jacked the front beam up and cold move the beam. not good. being young and dumb , and poor I drove it home at 55 mph.
I took it to my aircooled mechanic , he said the windshield glue had to come out and then he could weld in a new lower frame head section for me. but I had to get the glue out and remove the gas and tank before he would work on it, so as not to blow up.
oh boy! I put a lot of glue in there.(since the 1990's urethane windshield glue and glass are considered structural elements to a car, strong stuff.) in my case I had inadvertently been holding the frame head together; which broke loose jumping off and back on the highway.
when I finally got all the glue and gas tank out it was towed to the mechanic. he was shocked to see that only the 1 inch top weld of the frame head was intact. he couldn't believe I towed it to his shop or drove back from the beach. well of course he could fix it but at a higher price. it got fixed but today I would have gotten a different frame instead as I still had frankenstien floors and worn out king pins, and bungee cord holding shifter in fourth gear.

I then built a much better buggy as I had educated myself with facts from books and other friendly buggy people I encountered. the horror show buggy was sold off to another excited newbie who abused it and learned he had to fix it as it came with no warranty .
most newbies buy a horror story buggy as their first buggy, did you ?


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