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73 westfalia continental

Discussion in 'Members Rides' started by MrBubbleHead, May 19, 2012.

  1. MrBubbleHead

    MrBubbleHead Member

    Messages:
    259
    Location:
    Footscray Melbourne
    Here's my latest pickup, after a long wait to resto /refit my current 78 kombi (non original camper) with a new camper interior and pop top then respray and re-trim. I started thinking about picking up a good camper and bringing that upto spec. I've had this idea for the last 5 years but hadn't had a good camper come my way until now.

    As my kids are growing up so fast I realized I was becoming time poor. As a resto of the 78 I would take the Kombi off the road for at least 2 years to become what I wanted it to be, due to a slow budget. That as a family means no two seasons of getting away to the beach during the warmer months and other possible trips out the window.

    So I've been keeping an eye out for the right bus something I can improve and use over the next two years. Having had a nice 74 auto sopru back in 1999 and living out of it for 8 months while traveling this land I always wanted another.

    If I was to replace my current 78 kombi which I'm the second owner on and have kept in check for the last 11 years a replacement had to be worthy of making me want to part ways with the 78.

    So you can imagine when this 73 westfhalia continental came my way. Its presentable with most the interior intact. The original table has been replaced with a one piece unit and the small self that covers the sink is missing along with the rear original mattress. These parts I can easily source or replace the rest is good just in need of a good clean up.

    Here's the only pics I have I'll get some more up soon of the interior.

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    Last edited: Aug 28, 2012
  2. MrBubbleHead

    MrBubbleHead Member

    Messages:
    259
    Location:
    Footscray Melbourne
    [​IMG]

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    The Kombi is finally safely in my drive and the immediate things to start on are the following:

    Remove the flower decals

    Remove the paint off the headlight trims and mirrors take them back to chrome

    Clean the exterior most of which is original paint with obvious repainting of the rear passenger corner at sometime.

    Clean the interior.

    Replace the passenger winder mech as this is shot at the moment
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2012
  3. type2mania

    type2mania Member

    Messages:
    203
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Looks like a very nice find, no rust, how is the 1600 engine like? Good luck with your project!
     
  4. MrBubbleHead

    MrBubbleHead Member

    Messages:
    259
    Location:
    Footscray Melbourne
    Rust wise nothing obviouse other than a bubble in the bottom front corner of the drivers door which seems to look small. The engine was a little down on compression when I got it but I fixed that turned out the RH head was loose, compression is now really good. Been a 73 change over model i can put in a 2ltr and box without modifiying the engine bay I'll weigh that up in the next few weeks. It would be nice to keep it original.
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2013
  5. jimmybay

    jimmybay New Member

    Messages:
    267
    Location:
    roxby downs sa
    Nice mate love westy tops just something about them :)
     
  6. wirrah

    wirrah Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,930
    Location:
    Lower Hunter, NSW
    Great find.

    I pulled the interior of my '71 Westy to clean it properly. Easy job even for inexperienced your's truly. Redid the worn plywood walls with a colour wash to emulate the original style and found some replica fabric for the curtains.

    You might find this useful. It is the German brochure for '73. I think the Continental is the same (mirrored) layout as the Helsinki.

    http://www.vw-t2-bulli.de/data/books/brochures/1973-01-vw-t2-camper-ad.pdf

    Greg
     
  7. MrBubbleHead

    MrBubbleHead Member

    Messages:
    259
    Location:
    Footscray Melbourne
    That's great I was looking for the information on all the different setups for 1973. I'd noticed there were several similarities but wasn't sure on a few items. My pop top is different again its got a solid board double width with a flap at the head end which you climb in through then latch it into place to sleep your head on. When not in use the whole lot pushes up and is secured with the rubber holding hooks which are used to secure the roof during travel. This is great for extra head room while your camping.

    I've noticed the hole in the roof isn't a hack job it's utilizes the the factory sunroof hole. If anyone wanted a cool factory sunroof and to get rid of the pop top this is handy to know, on the other hand why you would get rid of the camper pop top on a camper would be a shame, but they did make these without the pop tops as well.
     
  8. wirrah

    wirrah Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,930
    Location:
    Lower Hunter, NSW
    Yes, pop top Westfalias were built on factory sunroof bodies. Early ones had belly pans as well. My '71 is a hard top though.
     
  9. MrBubbleHead

    MrBubbleHead Member

    Messages:
    259
    Location:
    Footscray Melbourne
    Ok so not much has happened on the engine side just yet but I've just come back from a drive up to Valla and back in the 78 and I'm convinced I should go with a late 2 ltr type 4 engine and box setup. I've got the option of also putting in a 010 late Auto bus setup as I've got the donor bus lined up if I decided to go the auto option so should be a case of taking the auto off one shell and into the westy.

    While at Valla I met the former owner who brought it from the original owner (91yrs old ) who took it for a last spin and ended up putting it onto its side... long story but it was evently fixed and sold to the person I brought it off about 8 years ago. He's happy to give me all the photos of the repairs been carried out :)

    Thanks to Mike splitbus for solving my sloppy one year only indicator stalk problem by supplying me with a NOS SWF unit in it's original box. I fitted this last night and cleaned up around the steering colum while I was at it. Its unreal how good it feels now using the indicator. Still have the dash and clock cluster to clean up

    [​IMG]



    The Dash has been poorly hacked for a modern radio so a new dash will be sort.

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    A new tap / faucet has been installed using the original holes (thank god) so I'll be looking for an original at some point

    [​IMG]
     
  10. MrBubbleHead

    MrBubbleHead Member

    Messages:
    259
    Location:
    Footscray Melbourne
    While I'm in the process of starting to clean up my 73 westi ready for summer I've got to remove the interior as well which seems to be incredibly easy to do. I'm thinking might replace the Birch paneling with something very close as it seems to be at the point (like all early westys with this birch paneling) where if I wiped it the panels the paint will start coming off onto the cloth. While the interior is out it might be a good time to replace it. Unfortunately the rear hatch panel is destroyed due to a leaking rear hatch seal causing the water to cascade down the rear window and the ply panel soaking it all up then falling apart. Lucky though not a spot of rust in the tail gate.
    I'm looking for a match as we speak.

    Here's what the rear hatch panel looked like after been removed

    [​IMG]

    So after some messing about I've adjusted the rear hatch so it seals at the top of the rear hatch. I'll replace this shortly when i order some more seals for the Kombi.
    I always wondered why the rear hatch wouldn't close like it should then I found this

    [​IMG]

    Easily fixed but now opens and closes as it should.


    I'm chasing the correct low back front seats so I can restore and re cover them in the near future but for this season I can see the wedge Kombi seats staying, at least there comfy and still VW
     
  11. MrBubbleHead

    MrBubbleHead Member

    Messages:
    259
    Location:
    Footscray Melbourne
    So I've started cleaning the 39 years of dirt starting at the rear

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  12. vassy69SC

    vassy69SC Active Member

    Messages:
    986
    Location:
    Brisbane
    Cool camper

    Now put it back together and get the family packed in for a road trip!!

    Best thing ever :)
     
  13. wirrah

    wirrah Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,930
    Location:
    Lower Hunter, NSW
    I sourced an original style sink tap for mine off eBay. Also various parts such as the internal light, wheel cover, cupboard hooks and curtain material from the Samba. Best place to look for parts.
     
  14. MrBubbleHead

    MrBubbleHead Member

    Messages:
    259
    Location:
    Footscray Melbourne
    Yeah the Samba's great I always try to get stuff locally, but with a westy there's not going to be much available over here. I've already checked whats going for how much on the Samba but postage on the larger items bump up the price a fair bit.

    I'm not sure what to do with the original 73 only gold fabric. It seems to be in need of replacing but it's not available so I'm thinking of using the blue plaid material from wolfsburg west or I think I've found the manufacturer of the material I just have to plough through there pages of material samples to find the exact one. If I find a close match and weight on the original gold material I'd consider using that only for originality, as I prefer the plaids westfalia used later on.
     
  15. wirrah

    wirrah Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,930
    Location:
    Lower Hunter, NSW
    I think there were some other combinations available in Europe. While mine has the gold vinyl there are '71 around with original blue plaid. These were not available in the US so that makes them rare, the US being the number one market.

    See this thread http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=493358
     
  16. MrBubbleHead

    MrBubbleHead Member

    Messages:
    259
    Location:
    Footscray Melbourne
    Thanks for that link there's a lot to take on board there.

    Well last night I bit the bullet and removed very carefully all the camping interior. The floor was collapsed as you climb in and I needed to confirm the musty smell. So after about an hour the interior was all out and all fixings bagged and tagged sure enough my suspicions were found to be true, the under floor ply was suffering from water absorption from water spills from filling the water tank and also I dare say the odd beer or drinks split over the years. Needless to say it stank luckily the floor of the kombi has faired well with only a few small affected areas. These I'll clean up and paint before I cut some new flooring.

    I'm planing on recovering the interior and getting the rear cushion above the engine lid cut from some Dunlop foam. This was missing when I got the kombi. Side panel wise I still have to find the right ply.

    I'll put some pics up later of the interior removed
     
  17. wirrah

    wirrah Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,930
    Location:
    Lower Hunter, NSW
    The floor in mine was dry with some minor surface rust but 40 years of built up dust and grime. Fortunately the base ply was fine. I ended up cleaning it with the Karcher. Look forward to your photos.
     
  18. MrBubbleHead

    MrBubbleHead Member

    Messages:
    259
    Location:
    Footscray Melbourne
    After the furniture was out I found the sorce of the musty smell. the sub floor ply wood was mouldy. this I removed and kept as a template for the new piece of ply.

    Heres a few pics of the floor clean up

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  19. MrBubbleHead

    MrBubbleHead Member

    Messages:
    259
    Location:
    Footscray Melbourne
    All rust cleaned up treated and primed

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  20. MrBubbleHead

    MrBubbleHead Member

    Messages:
    259
    Location:
    Footscray Melbourne
    I've covered all the primed areas with a matched gloss white to seal it up and tidy up the entry/

    Here's a pic of the Birch ply paneling and the wear its gained.

    [​IMG]

    I've decided to replace this and have tracked down and brought the right birch ply and experimented on matching the finish to the original

    this is how it should look

    [​IMG]
     

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