Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Interior progress on the '68 Riviera

I've started working on the interior of the '68. I painted the driver's area, cleaned up and reinstalled the dash, and I removed the headliner so I can paint the ceiling. I also found some great interior panels and a rubber mat at the pick n pull in Antelope. This is the first time they've had a bus in about two years. Luckily, it had some parts that I desperately needed. My friend Eric Zitzman sold me a really nice rear bench seat, while my buddy Bob Frith gave me a middle seat frame and decent steering wheel. It pays to have friends who have old VWs. When you give away parts, they tend to come back to you in multitude.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Making some progress

It's going awfully slow, these days. I haven't had a lot of time to work on the bus. Here is a picture of the front end as it is almost finished. Almost time to move on to another section.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

It's been a long time...

It's been over a year since I blogged on Tinkerbell. The sad thing is that she's been gone for quite a while. Since that, I restored a 1974 Westfalia, sold it to a nice gentleman in the UK, and have started on another project. So far this one doesn't have a name, but I'm sure that he/she will as its personality develops. I'm not sure what it will look like when it is finished. There is always a tug of war between my Kim and me with every bus. Kim likes custom interiors with freaky paint. I like to go more stock.

Either way, this will not be completely stock. It started its life as a 1969 non-walkthrough, small poptop Riviera. Since the Wesfalia interior is easier to find (and more desirable) than the Riviera, I will probably go with that if I decide to do a camping interior. Let's see what happens as we progress.

I've started the project by ripping out the old metal from the front. It was dented and rusted beyond repair. I found some donor sheet metal from my friend, Corey. He had an old bus with some good parts, but more importantly, a new repop lower front end for an early baywindow bus. Here are a couple of pictures of my progress.

This is the front end after I cut out the front end sheet metal.

Starting to weld the front back together. These are pieces from the donor bus and the new lower sheet metal.

I ground down the welds and am starting to smooth and fill with bondo. Quite frankly, I wish I had removed the entire front end. It would have been easier to weld, clean, and line up the pieces if it were on a bench rather than on the bus. Oh well, live and learn.