Sunday, July 20, 2008

Weekend work

I don't have any pictures, as Elizabeth went to visit an old friend and took the camera for the weekend. But, work was done. I picked up the rebuild carb for the'63 bug from Bryan at Viking Auto in Novato on Saturday. After a eating a rather large burrito next door to Viking, I headed home, backed the bug into our garage and got to work. I took it as a chance to switch the fuel line and filter I did a few weeks ago, since I picked up some metric German hose from Viking. My friend, Peter, stopped by and hung out while I finished up, and then helped me push it back out for a test start.

Peter started the bug while I stood guard at the rear with a fire extinguisher. It started right up but was rough. Good news was there appears to be no fuel leaking. I didn't know how to adjust the fuel/air mixture, and it was obviously running rich and sounded bad. I figured we'd back it into the garage and later in the weekend, I'd get a chance to tune it.

That's when a neighbor walked over. I've seen him out there numerous times working on his BMW bikes. He introduced himself, Mike, and said he used to race VWs back in the day. He took my flathead screwdriver and, within about 2 minutes, had the carb adjusted and the VW sounded great (I had also failed to remember to plug the vacuum tube, which made it run a little rough as well). I was glad to meet Mike and will make an effort to swing by his garage from time to time to say hi. He seems to know his stuff and, well, I don't.

After that, we did a bit of a shakedown. Took it out for a ride and stopped and filled the tires with air as they were low. There was one start up where the gas pedal stuck down sending the RPMs sky high before we (actually Peter) turned the key off. We checked it out and could find nothing that it would stick on. It did it about 2 more times in our shakedown. Once home, Peter took off and I called it a day.

On Sunday, I decided to concentrate on a few of the small things on the '63. First, I oiled the gas pedal linkage really well, but figured if it was sticking, it had to be due to the linkage at the carb. I played with it for a while and thought I had it. Then I took it down the street to wash it and vacuum the insides - something I hadn't done since we bought it. I know it has a low-end paint job, but I'm surprised how nice it looks all shined up. The insides looked nice cleaned up and I took the opportunity to throw the after market floor mats in the trash.

Little Blue has only one headlight when on low beam, so I took off to NAPA and was lucky enough to find that they had 1 in stock. back home, I swapped the headlight, tested it, and still there is no low beam. I'll check the fuses later this week. Also, I replaced the passenger side windshield wiper which, for some reason, was in the trunk when I bought the car.

I took it back out on about a 20-minute ride in the farm land to the west of us, hitting Marin County and then turning around. Once on the ride back, the pedal stuck down again (I am getting good at clutching and reaching down quickly to pull the pedal back). I got it back home and gave the engine a chance to cool before working on it more.

Later, I went to work on the accelerator cable at the carb again. I think the spring was getting caught up, and worked on getting everything aligned and moving correctly. I didn't take it out for a spin after that, but tested it every way I could and it never stuck again. I'm going to take it to work tomorrow, so I'll see if it does it then.

Sadly, Big Blue sat there all weekend watching the goings-ons. I tried to get to the woodwork for Big Blue's doors, but walked back into the garage and the end of the day today to get started and ended up cleaning the garage for a few hours. I am ordering some needed parts for Big Blue (heater boxes, heater tubes) and plan on having a Big Blue weekend soon.


Ludwig's Drivers

It seems that where n is the number of VWs one owns, one spends 2^n-1 in time working on them. Two more and you'll have to quit your job!

Ludwig's Drivers

And all I can think is "Hmmm, why was that windshild wiper in the trunk?"

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