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My Type 34 Karmann Ghia. I have owned this car for 20+ years. I even brought it with me when I moved to Australia. a...
My Type 34 Karmann Ghia.

I have owned this car for 20+ years. I even brought it with me when I moved to Australia. and despite this it's still not finished.
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  • Mick uploaded 290 photos in the album Build Photos
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  • Mick's Type 34 has been created

    Mick's Type 34

    My Type 34 Karmann Ghia.

    I have owned this car for 20+ years. I even brought it with me when I moved to Australia. and despite this it's still not finished.
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  • I finally finished off the engine mounts today. I decided to bolt them in rather than weld them in, mostly as I feel that it will be a lot stronger. To do this I fabricated a plate to fit on the inside of the engine bay tin. This helps spread the load out and reinforce the panel. It will...
    I finally finished off the engine mounts today. I decided to bolt them in rather than weld them in, mostly as I feel that it will be a lot stronger. To do this I fabricated a plate to fit on the inside of the engine bay tin. This helps spread the load out and reinforce the panel. It will also prevent the bolts from pulling through the metal.
    The plate needed to be bent to miss the recess pressed in the panel where the bracket sits, which was easy enough to do on the bender. I then spotted through some holes to allow them to be bolted together.

    With the backing plates fabbed up it was time for a trial fit. I removed the engine bar and cleaned up the gunk and gunge from it (the donor engine had leaky oil cooler seals) I then bent the bar slightly rearwards on each side to allow the engine mounts to be fitted to a flat surface. Any further forwards and the engine bay metalwork starts to bend inwards due to the rear wheel well. I trial fitted everything to see how much clearance I had between the carbs and the engine lid, and also between the alternator and the engine lid.
    To get the clearance I wanted between the carbs and the engine lid I've dropped the rear of the engine  a little, so to make sure everything fitted, I also trial fitted the bellows to make sure that I could get it in position. It was a little tight but eventually I got the bellows in place.
    With everything in position, I could finalise the engine mount locations. I spotted through the holes on the brackets and then drilled holes in the engine bay.
    With the holes in the engine bay drilled I bolted everything up and fixed the engine bar to the engine mounts.  I then let the weight down off of the engine stands - the engine is finally in!!! This is the first time in probably 20 years that the car has had an engine fitted in it, and a milestone in the build.

    After double checking everything, the mounts were taken out again and given a couple of coats of enamel black ready for permanent fitting next week. There's a couple of welds to do to refix the inner engine bay tin work into position. I had to crack the welds to allow the tin to bend out slightly to fit the mounts into position, I decided that this was easier than re-forming the engine bay tin, which was my original plan. The change in direction was partly as a result of remaking the brackets to be smaller and therefore require less modification to the engine bay tin to fit and partly as I decided to bend the engine bar backwards to allow the mounts to be fitted further back. In total the engine bay tin has only needed to be bent out by about 5-1omm and the overall result is that the mounts do not look too out of place. I'm really happy with the results, and can't wait to get cracking on the engine build.
    All in all a momentous occasion, and one that I'm now celebrating with a glass of red
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  • I’ve been pretty busy the past few weeks, so much so that I haven’t even had a chance to blog about what I’ve managed to get done. I’ve really been getting a push on to get the car ready for the 50th anniversary celebrations that we are having in September, and so have been flat out at every...

    I’ve been pretty busy the past few weeks, so much so that I haven’t even had a chance to blog about what I’ve managed to get done. I’ve really been getting a push on to get the car ready for the 50th anniversary celebrations that we are having in September, and so have been flat out at every opportunity.
    If you’ve been reading the blog regularly, then you would recall that last time I had trial fitted the engine into the car to figure out a few things. One of the things that I needed to get sorted was the fabrication of some new IRS engine mounts. Originally the car was swing-axle, but I have changed the rear sub-frame over to a later IRS type.
    With no frame-horns (IRS sub-frames do not have frame-horns) the only option to mount the engine is via the same method used with the later IRS cars, this meant fabricating some engine bar mounts to accept the IRS engine mounts.
    I started off by making a pattern in card and using this to make a mock-up that I trial fitted into the car. This first mock up did not fit, mostly as there is a lack of space, so I needed to shrink the initial design a little, and make a new template up.

    With the template transferred into metal, it was bent up and a hole cut for a stock VW engine mount. I flanged the edge of the hole for additional strength. After trial fitting this I decided to close in the back of the bracket and TIG welded another plate into the back of the bracket. This gave the bracket a lot more strength, and also will make it easier to fit .


    Whilst I had the TIG cranked up I decided to weld up the fan. Stock fans are not designed to run at high revs and can run the possibility of exploding. The generally accepted solution is to weld the fan blades. Whilst the engine I’m building is not going to be a screamer, it cost nothing to weld it up and killed an hour or so.
    I also picked up the new exhaust system and trial fitted it. A buddy of mine had bought the same exhaust for his Type 34 and had some fit issues. I decided to take the plunge and buy the same system with the expectation that I would have a little work to do making it fit. The system is an ‘over the top’ style system that has the silencer sitting between the collector and the fan bellows, this improves ground clearance and hides the silencer out of sight.
    The exhaust fitted quite well but will need a small modification to the flange on the silencer to get it all to line up correctly


    As well as exhausts, I’ve been busy with refitting the front end. I repainted the calipers, cleaned up the hubs, and clearanced them to fit new oil seals. Then I refitted them up with new bearings.


    I picked up a Type 3 CB Performance IDF kit. This has stubby manifolds and short air filters so that it fits under the deck lid. These will eventually make way for an EFI system, but as they were ‘spare’ I’ve decided to use them. These are actually for my bus, but as that is a long way off of being finished, I decided to put them to good use.

    Other goodies I picked up include a brand new AS41 case This has been pre-machined and clearanced by Stan Pobjoy for the 82 x 90.5 kit that I have, and just needs to be full flowed (go figure), which I will do when the NPT tap set turns up that I’ve ordered. I also invested in an engine stand as well, which I mounted as shown. All I need to source is some stainless steel for the bench top to create my clean area for engine assembly.

    Other stuff includes… Rear anti roll bar…

    …thermostatically controlled fan…

    …a bug alternator for an alternator conversion…

    …and probably some other stuff that I’ve missed out too.
    Tomorrow I’m out in the garage again and plan to get the engine mounts fitted into the car. Assuming all goes well the engine will come out again and I will move onto something else.
    I would like to get the pan rolling again but I’m waiting on some 944 backing plates. The rear spindles are fitted up with new bearings and oil seals, but until the 944 stuff turns up that’s as far as I can go on the back.
    I might look at refitting the pedal cluster and master cylinder. I can get as far as fitting the front brake lines up, but without the rear hubs I will not be able to make up the hard lines and fill / bleed the system.
    Might also look at partially assembling the crank. The crank, flywheel, fan etc need to go off to the balancers so I need to get it all together, this includes fitting the cam gear and distributor drive to the crank.
    Will (eventually) keep you posted of the progress
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  • Spent a bit of time yesterday stripping down the Type 3 IRS that I will be fitting into the Type 34. This came out of the fastback doner car I bought a few months back. The suspension is in pretty good shape with no rust, dings, modifications or bits missing.

    I removed the A-arms and spring...
    Spent a bit of time yesterday stripping down the Type 3 IRS that I will be fitting into the Type 34. This came out of the fastback doner car I bought a few months back. The suspension is in pretty good shape with no rust, dings, modifications or bits missing.

    I removed the A-arms and spring plates in readiness to strip and paint the beam. I will probably paint this myself in an enamel based paint rather than getting it powder coated as powder coating generally comes out a little too shiny for my taste, plus they rarely mask everything up properly, so you end up spending just as much time removing paint from areas like bearing mating surfaces and thread inserts.


     

    The bushes are well worn and will get replaced with new items. I will probably source some urethane bushes, although these are not as readily available as the swingaxle type.
    I will be fitting a disc brake conversion to the rear. Similar to the front, i am using Porsche brembo calipers. These are the same ones that were fitted to the aluminium 944 Turbo A-arms I was previously using. The reason that I am no longer using them is simply that the suspension that I was buillding is unfinished and it will be quicker to use a stock setup with caliper adaptors. This is because using the VW arms means that there is no extra track (width), which in turn means that I do not need to modify the rear suspension. In reality, whilst the Aluminium arms look the business, they are actually heavier than the steel VW arms, and the additional work required to fit them is not worth it.
    The aluminium arms can be used without modifying the track if the correct offset wheel is used, but for the wheel combination that I am using this does not work.

    Fitting Porsche brakes to the rear is relatively simple and just involves a bolt on kit available from MBT Engineering . This allows fitment of the standard Porsche disc and handbrake shoes as well. These operate on the inside of the disc, much like a drum brake. This is similar to the unit shown below.

    I still need to obtain the adaptor, unfortunately getting in touch with MBT is not easy. If it proves too hard to source I may simply use stock drums, and swap them over later. The main aim of the game at the moment is simply to ge the car back on the road.
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  • I got a call from the guy I bought the Fasty off of last week, turns out that another customer had crashed her Type 3 and was on the look out for a doner car. So this weekend I removed the engine and gearbox from the fasty in readiness for it to be picked up.
    It's been some time since i pulled...
    I got a call from the guy I bought the Fasty off of last week, turns out that another customer had crashed her Type 3 and was on the look out for a doner car. So this weekend I removed the engine and gearbox from the fasty in readiness for it to be picked up.
    It's been some time since i pulled the engine from a Type 3, and apart from it being the hottest day of the year, I managed to get the engine and box out of the car in a couple of hours. This included getting in running so that I could reverse it up on the ramps as well.
    Fortunately there were no seized or rounded bolts, and the whole process was fairly painless.
    Now all I need to do is rebuild it.
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  • Regular readers of my blog will know that the Type 4 engine, and Porsche 911 gearbox that I have built for the Razoredge has been borrowed for use in my salt flat race car. Whilst pondering on how much grief it would be to get it installed in both the Oval and the Ghia, and be able to swap them...
    Regular readers of my blog will know that the Type 4 engine, and Porsche 911 gearbox that I have built for the Razoredge has been borrowed for use in my salt flat race car. Whilst pondering on how much grief it would be to get it installed in both the Oval and the Ghia, and be able to swap them over without too much of an issue, I came to the conclusion that it was simply too much hassle.
    Whilst I had always dreamed of the big Type 4 powered Type 34. Now, after some 15 years of building it, and having moved to a different country, I've decided that I simply would like to get it on the road. There's no point in having a fast road car here in South Australia. There are no drag strips, very few race tracks, and with cops that hide in bushes with radar guns, little point in having a 350hp Type 34.
     
    So I've decided to fit a stock IRS, gearbox and EFI engine,so that I can complete the car and get it on the road. And whats more, I've even sourced a Fastback to act as the doner car.
     

    The EFI controller will be replaced with an aftermarket unit - maybe something like a Haltech, and the stock plenum and throttle body will be retained. The IRS will be fitted with some adaptors to allow the Porsche calipers to be fitted, but the aluminium Porsche Turbo arms will not be fitted at this stage. The rear suspension has been too much of a stumbling block, and is probably the main reason that the car has never been finished. I am now on the third incarnation of the rear setup - having not been 100% happy with the first two, this coupled with the hassle of fitting a 911 box into a Type 3 pan has means that progress has been unnecessarily slow. This, has also added to my decision to simply fit stock running gear and get it on the road. Once it's on the road and running, tinkering with it will be a lot simpler.

    As you can see from the pic, the EFI system has a certain elegance to it, and has always had an appeal to me, plus the best thing, is that it will look right at home in the engine bay, as the cold air intake, oil dipstick, cooling fan etc, will line right up. I will probably utilise a distributorless EFI controller, so all of the messy plug leads will be hidden away, and I may also change out the generator for an alternator.
    One issue with the stock EFI controller, is that it is not adaptable, meaning that any modification to the engine, such as fitting extractors, will simply throw everything out of whack, there is no way to tune the map. Replacing the controller with an aftermarket one, will fix this problem, as the mapping can be tuned to suit the engine. This will also allow for any future modifications that I may carry out.
    Type 34's were never sold with EFI - probably because they were discontinued before EFI become widely available on the Type 3 range.
    Whilst it will likely just start off stock, I do have plans to to turbocharge it at a later date - utilising the EFI with an aftermarket controller, nothing too radical - basically a stock 1600, with a small turbocharger - just enough to make it more tractible, not a screaming 1/4 mile racer. A guy I know in the UK had a lot of success adding a small turbocharger to a stock 1600 bug. The stock cam lends itself very well to turbocharging, as it has very little overlap. He basically made up a header system, swapped the carby for something more suitable, and boost referenced the fuel pump. Instant horsepower - and cheap too. I took a ride in the bug one day, it was impressive to say the least, and doing something similar has always had an appeal. However, I digress...
    First up is to get the fasty stripped out, and get rid of the rest of the car. Then set to getting the razor rolling again, which involves restoring the front and rear beams, and fitting them back in. Then I can get the headlining fitted. I will also give the engine a going over too, and paint up the tin. Then it's just a case of fitting it back together.
    Not a massive task, but still a fair amount of work.
    Watch this space...
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  • With some deliberation, and a bit of a heavy heart, I have decided that after over 10 years of running my  http://t-34.co.uk site, I am going to close it down next year.
    This decision is mostly due to the fact that i have too many other websites to look after, and getting the time to update and...
    With some deliberation, and a bit of a heavy heart, I have decided that after over 10 years of running my  http://t-34.co.uk site, I am going to close it down next year.
    This decision is mostly due to the fact that i have too many other websites to look after, and getting the time to update and maintain this one is simply too limited. Running Vdubber.com, as well as a variety of other non-Volkswagen related sites, and trying to keep on top of everything generally means that one or more sites suffer.
    All is not lost however, as I will be transferring all of the info over to my account here at Vdubber. The blog entries here will get transferred over to my blog, and the images will get transferred to my gallery here too.
    Along with this change goes a change of email address too. My new email is mick[#at#]vdubber[#dot#]com This is currently active, so feel free to use it next time you email me.
    The change will be a gradual one, with the site to remain active until mid 2011, i will slowly transfer the content over and eventually switch off the lights there, when it is done.
    It's a bit of a sad decision to have to make, especially considering that T-34 was my first website waaaay back in the 90's, but it does have a legacy that lives on, both here with VDubber, but also with the software that was developed out of the website.

    The legacy of T-34 is a lot larger than simply the content. The T-34 website runs from a scratch-written Content Management System (CMS) that I custom wrote especially for the site. I eventually released this for free as open source software via another website of mine  http://deeemm.com So in one way, the T-34 site will live on forever (well maybe - lol).

    So, enjoy it whilst you can, as it will not be around forever.

    Mick.
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  • Went and picked up the interior for the Ghia today. Gotta admit, I'm well pleased with the job they have done.
    I had the front and rear seats, plus the door cards and rear quarter panels redone. They made up new door cards from the templates I supplied, and did an awsome job of the door panels....
    Went and picked up the interior for the Ghia today. Gotta admit, I'm well pleased with the job they have done.
    I had the front and rear seats, plus the door cards and rear quarter panels redone. They made up new door cards from the templates I supplied, and did an awsome job of the door panels. They even added the correct heat seams into the panel to match the original. The panels are vinyl, whilst the map pocket was trimed in a leather material. The seats are also leather, in the same shade as the vinyl. Gotta admit, I was a little sceptical that they could match the vinyl and leather together (i originally wanted it all leather but the talked me out of it) but the match is spot-on. you cannot tell the diffrence.Here's some pics.One of the front seats - I still need to source one of the plastic trims that covers the front / side edge of the seat before I can reassemble it.Rear seat base and back. You can also see the rear quarter panel.The door panels have come out really well. They will look excellent fitted up under the black door cappings. I alread had the trim strip repolished.Detail of the door panel showing the heat seams and the map pocket. Also, in case you are wondering, the arm rests are good used items.I also went out and bought some sound deadening material - the stuff that the sound-off guys use for thier cars - a bitumen / foam / foil sheet. I will use this to finish off the skin panels before i fit the trim. I will also add some to the rear firewall and roof too.Next step is getting the car rolling again so that I can take it to the trimmers to get the headlining put in. Might just put the current suspsension back in rather than waiting until I can finish the new one off as that won't happen until after I have extended the garage, which is at least two months away.Only other thing I really need to do beforehand is to remove the door hinges and clean / polish them up. Which is actually a nice simple job - perhaps I will tackle it when I have some spare time.
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  • I have been building my Type 34 Karmann Ghia for the past 12 or 13 years (it's been so long I've forgotten when I actually bought it).
    So far the restoration has been documented on my personal website www.t-34.co.uk or over at the Type 34 Registry (ww.type34.org) where I help manage the site.
    T...
    I have been building my Type 34 Karmann Ghia for the past 12 or 13 years (it's been so long I've forgotten when I actually bought it).
    So far the restoration has been documented on my personal website www.t-34.co.uk or over at the Type 34 Registry (ww.type34.org) where I help manage the site.
    The current status is that the engine and gearbox are built and ready to fit, the car has been repainted, the suspension and brakes have mostly been finished and the interior is currently at the trim shop being recovered.
    The only major works left to do are to get the engine and box back in the car, which requires finishing off the rear suspension and plumb the engine in
    The engine is based around a Type 4 Unit and runs at 2.7 litres on a set of LN Engineering nickies. This is fueled by a turbo / EFI setup runnning from a DTA EFI unit. The engine drives a Porsche 915 5-Speed through a 944 rear suspension setup and has 996 / 944 turbo brakes all round.
    I would like to get it running for late this year / early next year, but I guess I will have to see what other distractions occur between now and then.
    I will keep you posted.
    Mick.
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  • Other commitments have meant that as usual progress has been slow, I've picked up a SACO hydraulic clutch kit which looks like a good quality item - It's pretty much a necessity as I'm sure the standard VW pedal / cable would not be up to the job of operating the Porsche clutch.I have had...
    Other commitments have meant that as usual progress has been slow, I've picked up a SACO hydraulic clutch kit which looks like a good quality item - It's pretty much a necessity as I'm sure the standard VW pedal / cable would not be up to the job of operating the Porsche clutch.I have had someone give me a quote for painting the car which is a reasonable price so I'm gonna get him to paint it for me. As usual my work commitments are meaning I'm getting less time to work on the car and do this kind of stuff myself. I've decided to remove the old how-to's from the site. The Type 34 Registry has now opened its doors to all without subscription, they have a far wider range of articles so I decided my few tech articles were no longer worth having. I've also added a link to a site called 'The air-cooled multimedia maintenance manual' this covers all aspects of keeping your VW engine in shape. I'm sure for all of you looking for maintenance tips the answer to your questions can be found on one of these two sites.Getting rid of those articles has freed up a little space so I'm considering adding a forum, I've mailed my ISP to see what kind of scripts I can run. Hopefully I can set something up.I'm trying to go for a change in direction with the site, I'm hoping to get rid of all the stuff which is just generalising and replace it with stuff specific to tuning Type 34 Ghia's and maybe Type 3's - There's far better sites out there that cover the general aspects of T-34's well there's one - The Registry so I've decided to kinda 'specialise' a bit more.
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  • Wow Looking at the date below, it's been some time since I've been to this page. So I guess in two years a lot must have been done (yeah right). I've managed to source some more bits, these include a NOS type 4 engine case, a Porsche 915 gearbox (from an '83 911 SC), a tacho, an IRS rear end and...
    Wow Looking at the date below, it's been some time since I've been to this page. So I guess in two years a lot must have been done (yeah right). I've managed to source some more bits, these include a NOS type 4 engine case, a Porsche 915 gearbox (from an '83 911 SC), a tacho, an IRS rear end and some other bits and bobs. The remainder of the chroming has been taken to the chromer's, all that remains is some catches and other bits that are to be zinc plated. I've started to strip out the remainder of the shell in readiness for it's trip to the painters (I've decided to entrust this to the professionals, plus I never seem to get the time). The boys from Paintbox have been round and had a look, and say that the roof shouldn't be a problem (they're experts at roof chops on bugs) so I need to get it ready for when they can fit it in, which should hopefully be sometime late August. This involves removing everything that's left on the car, and doing a bit of tinwork (I have to fabricate some engine mounting points, as the original top style mount will have to be removed, and a bus style (or later type 3 style) cross-member needs to be fabricated. to do this successfully the engine and gearbox needs to be trial fitted, (this will also allow me to weld the mounts for the Porsche gearbox cross-member as well).The gearbox needs an overhaul as the synchro-mesh on first gear is shot, I have the parts to do both first and second synchro's and have been informed that it's a relatively easy job. This however is not the first job on the list, that job is to clear out the garage, which has been neglected for quite some time, as I need to create enough space to work on the Ghia (plus Karens Ghia is due back from the painters soon). So come tomorrow that's what I'll be doing.Next on the agenda is to remove the old swing axle suspension and replace it with the IRS unit. At the moment I'm looking for a 944 rear end so that I can transfer the aluminum trailing arms and hubs / disc brakes onto the IRS unit. This is practically a straight swap - evidently even the torsion bars can be used.Then the front suspension will get overhauled, again 944 / 968 hubs and brakes are going to be fitted, the best option is to go for the later units as they utilize a four pot caliper and larger discs, but this limits you to fitting 16" or larger wheels, and all of the best Porsche wheels are 15".
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  • Well I managed to find someone to supply the Porsche parts that I need, so far I've picked up the wheels from him (a set of 16" Fuchs with a space saver spare), and hopefully this week I should be able to pick up the suspension and brake parts. The swing-axle rear end has been removed, and sold....
    Well I managed to find someone to supply the Porsche parts that I need, so far I've picked up the wheels from him (a set of 16" Fuchs with a space saver spare), and hopefully this week I should be able to pick up the suspension and brake parts. The swing-axle rear end has been removed, and sold. The IRS axle has been trial fitted to allow me to measure for the positions of the engine and gearbox mounts, but I think I'll wait until the 944 'A' arms have been fitted before I get the welder out.I managed to source a pair of headlights with trim rings and bowls, they're not original parts, but the difference is only slight, the complete cost was only £30. The headlights are exactly the same as the ones I fitted to Karens Ghia after it was imported, those cost £80 for the lights alone.I've also bought myself a larger compressor so that I can blast and paint the underneath of the pan, there's a lot of prep work to be done under there, taking off all of the old paint, and blasting all of the surface rust away.Once the rear end is sorted out, and the suspension is in place with the engine and gearbox mounts welded up I think I'll turn my attention to the roof. There's a lot of prep work to be done carefully removing the roof skin from the roof frame. I have already trial fitted a sunroof motor that I bought from the scrap yard, but the motor seemed to run too fast, it was way too awkward without the roof on the car, so it may be best to sort this out after the roof is fitted. I'm going to try to get as much prep work done as possible before the car is sent off to the boys at Paintbox as this will make their life easier, and possibly be a bit easier on the pocket as well.
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  • I have sent off for my age related registration number, which will have a "C" suffix, indicating 1965. As some of you have pointed out; the car would have been a 1966 model year and was probably not registered over here until 1966. But as far as DVLC are concerned, as it states on the TUV birth...
    I have sent off for my age related registration number, which will have a "C" suffix, indicating 1965. As some of you have pointed out; the car would have been a 1966 model year and was probably not registered over here until 1966. But as far as DVLC are concerned, as it states on the TUV birth certificate that the car was sold in 1965, they are not prepared to issue a later registration. This is understandable I guess. Rules are rules.I'm not particularly bothered, obviously I would have preferred to have kept the registration number that was originally issued to the car, but I have no way of finding this out.I'll keep you posted on the outcome.
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  • Here is the TUV Birth Certificate for the '66, as you can see it was in fact built in '65. This has put a bit of a spanner in the works, so to speak, as I had assumed that the registration number that came with the car was genuine, ( LHU 211E - 1967 ? ), and I would have liked to have kept it....
    Here is the TUV Birth Certificate for the '66, as you can see it was in fact built in '65. This has put a bit of a spanner in the works, so to speak, as I had assumed that the registration number that came with the car was genuine, ( LHU 211E - 1967 ? ), and I would have liked to have kept it. As the DVLC went computerized in about 1983, they have no records dating to before that date, ( I guess someone must have eaten them), so if you have a car that has been off of the road since before then, as I have, they will have no record of it's proper details. This is not a problem, as there are two things that you can do: If you know the registration number, and it has not already been reissued to someone else, you have to supply them with some proof that the vehicle is of historic significance, and deserves to keep the number, (a letter from an approved car club such as the KGOC, is all that is needed), and then it can keep it's proper registration number. If on the other hand you either don't know the number, or cannot get a letter of approval then an age related plate will be supplied. This is one that bears the correct suffix for the year, but was not necessarily the one originally supplied with the car.I think that I will end up with an age related plate, which is a shame, but it doesn't seem realistic to think that the above registration is correct, although, I suppose it is possible, that the car was not registered for two years. I think that I would prefer to have an unoriginal registration that is correct for the year, as I doubt that I would be able to find out what the original number was.
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  • It's been long overdue but I've had to get on with doing some decorating in the house, (unfortunately the '65 is not at the top of my list of priorities at the moment). The parts amassed for it had to be moved as I am soon going to be knocking down the wall that they were resting against. This...
    It's been long overdue but I've had to get on with doing some decorating in the house, (unfortunately the '65 is not at the top of my list of priorities at the moment). The parts amassed for it had to be moved as I am soon going to be knocking down the wall that they were resting against. This meant that I finally had to get around to assembling the racking that I had got for the garage, (it's only been sitting there for two years!), but I'm glad that I did, not only has it given me enough space to carefully store all of those parts, but it's given me space to store all of those things that were cluttering up the garage. Next thing is to chop down the tree behind the garage, as I'm sure that soon it is going to cause the back wall to collapse. Too many things....not enough time....
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  • I've been doing some research on suspension and steering geometry and have come across a couple of nice programs for calculating suspension dimensions. Although this is not a completely scientific art, it certainly takes out the hard math's aspect, out of calculating things like roll centres,...
    I've been doing some research on suspension and steering geometry and have come across a couple of nice programs for calculating suspension dimensions. Although this is not a completely scientific art, it certainly takes out the hard math's aspect, out of calculating things like roll centres, wheel scrub and dynamic camber/castor changes. I've made a basic design for the layout, all I have to do now is see if it will fit, unfortunately things are not looking good as I was hoping to retain the original frame horns, and it looks like it will lengthen the wheelbase too much if I try to fit the suspension in the position where the beam originally was. I guess if that's the case, I'll have to decide if I can justify cutting the frame horns off, I suppose I could always get another pan.
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  • My whole intention with building this car may seem a bit sacrilegious to some, but the one thing that Volkswagens have always been lacking in is power. It is for this reason that I intend to build one of, if not the fastest T34's around, (I'm not really a boy racer, I've just decided to take my...
    My whole intention with building this car may seem a bit sacrilegious to some, but the one thing that Volkswagens have always been lacking in is power. It is for this reason that I intend to build one of, if not the fastest T34's around, (I'm not really a boy racer, I've just decided to take my mid life crisis a bit early). Most of what my plans include will not permanently change the structure of the car, and so if I decide, it could easily be changed back to original.The only major structural change I will make is to change the roof for one with a sunroof in, but then again I'm sure that most people wouldn't object to that (except the true purists). I had a bit of a lucky chance meeting with one Clive Richardson, now the Type 34 secretary (I think) of the Karmann Ghia Owners Club, who owns a very tidy RHD sunroof model. It was at one of the infamous Karmann Connection swap meets, I spotted his car and decided to go and have a chat with him. It was whilst in conversation with him I mentioned; "wouldn't it be great if you could get a complete roof..........", well the gods must have been smiling at me that day, as Clive then told me how he had bought a complete roof from someone in Germany, so as he could get the electric motor to replace the faulty unit in his car, what was more was that he was prepared to sell it. We struck a deal and Clive even delivered it to me.The real heart of the project is the motor, a 2.3 Litre Type 4 unit, with a Ray Jay 0.8 AR turbo, and a 50 HP Nitrous kit. I've done lots of research on All aspects of turbo charging, and nitrous injection, and feel confident that I could get a very fast reliable motor together. (I met a guy from Sweden who ran a road legal home grown bug, which he used for strip racing, he ran well into the nines using a 2.3 Fuel injected turbo'd Type 4 motor, with a hybrid Garret T3 exhaust/T4 compressor turbo,). The key to any turbo charged engine is to have a good fuel delivery system, and where most designs reach a limitation is their use of carburetors. It was once said that it was impossible to run a blow through system on anything over 5psi, although this 5psi rule has been proved wrong (Lotus Esprit Turbo's used just this method successfully running boost pressures of 12psi), both methods of carbureted turbo induction have their drawbacks. The biggest problems are fuel enrichment under boost conditions, and fuel separation within the inlet manifold. Carbs don't really have a good proportional control band, and tend to provide a very unreliable response when used in this application. (Remember a turbo engine running too lean on boost will burn out valves in an instant. Also as any air-cooled owner will vouch, when it gets cold carbs begin to ice up, can you imagine how quick this would happen in a suck through system, where rather than having an induction pressure of say 1-2psi you are running at 16. The best way to deal with this problem is to use fuel injection, some units also benefit from a host of other features, such as extra injector control for boost enrichment, water injection or nitrous applications, soft rev limits, shift lights, boost control, switch-able program settings that can be changed `on the fly`, nearly all systems use a wasted spark type ignition system, this coupled with the crank triggers that these systems use means that you can chuck your inefficient distributors away. It is a well proven fact that bottom end power gains are over 25% better than using carburetors, how do you think that they can get a 1.25 Litre fiesta to go so fast? (sic).One of the best systems that I've seen is the Haltec E6 unit, although I don't think that they have any distributors in this country, (I think it's an Australian company). I did at one time think of making my own system using an early Ford Sierra Cosworth brain, (the brain only controls the fuel injection, and not things like ABS, traction control etc. as most other OEM brains do). However although software is available to program the chips for these units, its much easier to get an after-market unit where you just plug your laptop into the brain, download a preset set of injector timing parameters, and tune them up as you drive around, (not all of us have a rolling road in their garage).Nitrous sounds like a scary thing to have on a turbo motor, but truth be told its not used the same way as with a normally aspirated engine, the nitrous is only active up until a certain boost pressure, (full boost or just below) this in effect gets the engine up to boost quicker and eliminates any turbo lag, it is possible to keep the nitrous switched in when full boost is achieved, which is fine if you complete professionally and tear your engine down after every pass, however I don't think that it is a viable proposition to use it this way in a street motor. (engine life expectancy-One day if you're lucky). One great advantage that nitrous provides for turbo engines is that it considerably lowers the charge temperature, practically super cooling the air entering the engine, which is great news as turbo charged engines run phenomenally hotter than normally aspirated engines. Because of the way that the nitrous is used it also lasts considerably longer than in other applications.The particular turbo that I am using is a bit oversized for a 2.3 Litre engine,(0.8 AR), whilst this gives very good high end power, it does also create a lot of turbo lag, which is where the nitrous helps out, eliminating the lag so that it spins up quicker. The higher RPM gains with a larger turbo mean that whilst most smaller Turbo's compromise their high end operating range to eliminate lag the larger unit will provide more power further up the rev range. One modification that I intend to do but have not been able to find out too much about, is to fit a Porsche 5 speed, there's no way that I'm paying the extortionate prices that they want for a Berg 5 speed,( after all its still a VW box, and they're not that strong). Volksworld did an article once, but it wasn't really that informative, they told you how to reposition the gearbox mounts so that the gearbox would mount into the frame-horns of a swing-axle Beetle, but no mention was made of what drive shafts you should use, or how they needed to be modified, I can only assume that you had to cut and shut a Porsche inner with a VW outer to get the splines correct to match up to the hub. Although this sounds extreme I did have some drive shafts converted like this before, and they ran fine. If anyone has any info, then please let me know.There is one cat that I am definitely not going to let out of the bag, that is my plans for the front suspension, think steering box, think not. All I will say is full height and camber adjustment, rose-jointed.......................Well, I'm all excited now, I think I'll go and take the angle grinder to the roof.
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  • To get the Ghia through the engineers inspection I need to address the issue of tyre to arch clearance. It had been noted by the engineer that I need to increase the clearance by approximately 10mm. There are a number of ways of acheiving this, most of which I have considered at some point, but...
    To get the Ghia through the engineers inspection I need to address the issue of tyre to arch clearance. It had been noted by the engineer that I need to increase the clearance by approximately 10mm. There are a number of ways of acheiving this, most of which I have considered at some point, but all of which have some kind of compromise. My plan was to cut back the inner lip of the wheel arch and raise the suspension a little, but his was far from ideal. However, given the alternative - narrowing the IRS arms, it was the easy option.
    Having now not looked a the Ghia in at least three months, I've now got a new found enthuusiasm to get it on the road, and to address the issues highlighted by the initial engineers inspection. I've decide to address the clearance issue properly by narrowing the IRS arms. A nominal 10 or 20mm is pretty easy to acheive by simply moving the bearing carrier in the arm. This is acheived by grinding the welds from the carrier, moving it inwards and re-welding in the new position.
     

     
    The benefit of this modification is that the result will look stock as the modification to the arm is very subtle. It also retains the strength in the arm when compared to other narrowing modifications involving cutting anf re-welding the arms. The only drawback is that the maximum amount that the bearing carrier can be moved inwards is limited by the shape of the arm itself. From what I have read a maximum of 29mm is possible using this method. More if modifications are made to the arm to clear brake calipers etc.
     

     
    The other consideration when narrowing the rear track is that the length of the drive shaft will also need to be reduced. This can be acheived in a few different ways. The left driveshaft from a Type 3 auto is shorter than the stock driveshaft and can be used, or alternatively some off of the shelf custom length driveshafts can be ordered from someone like Chirco. Failing that, you could get some scratch made.
     

     
    The CV joint itself also allows for some lateral movement. This is to compensate for the change in distance between the gearbox flange and drive axle spigot as the suspension moves through its travel range. The only issue is that I am not sure what the tolerance range is, although I can imagine that it would only amount to a few millimetres.
    My plan is to modify the spare IRS arms and then swap them over with those on the car but before I do this I need to get in the pit to take some measurements from between the wheel / tyre and the bump stop towers as the clearance is already quite small. I don't want to simply transfer the problem elsewhere.
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