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Old 07-13-2018, 11:16 AM   #1
Scott2
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Dune Buggy

Way back in high school I was a big VW guy. My first car was a Ď62 Bug that I bought for $365 with money earned from mowing lawns and working at Tastee Freez. I played with the 40hp motor in that for a while and then swapped in a Porsche super 90 motor with a full race cam and went street racing.

I had a succession of other bugs and a couple of square backs, built a sand rail/desert racer, worked in a VW repair shop for a few years, and drove my Dadís old Ď59 36hp Bug to college. One year I ran across a fiberglass dune buggy in a guysí yard. I bought that one for $50 and built it into a really sweet off-road buggy with a big dual carbed motor and a full race car roll cage. It would pull the front wheels on the street and was by far my favorite VW. Sold it to a friend of mine who still has it.

One day this spring I was looking thru CL and ran across this cool little buggy. Itís on a Ď62 floor pan and has a 2276 motor with dual two barrel carbs. I donít know the compression or cam but it should have > 150, maybe 175 HP and the buggy weighs nothing!! Itís really fast and a blast to drive. Of course it also needs a little work but I drug it home anyway.
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Old 07-13-2018, 11:28 AM   #2
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Re: Dune Buggy

Once I got it home and drove it around town - went to DQ with my wife - I realized the front end was really loose. Started checking it out and was shocked to see that the VW lug bolts only threaded in the brake hubs 1/8Ē! We were extremely lucky that wheels didnít fall off. I immediately put longer studs in with some red locktite and also adjusted the front end to tighten up the link pins.

Hereís a good pic of the motor. Pretty dusty and dirty but thatíll be easy to fix.
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Old 07-13-2018, 11:43 AM   #3
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Re: Dune Buggy

The stellar primer paint job on the buggy turned out to be a real turd. It started peeling right away and was kind of elastic. The pan also has rust holes so I decided to just get going on it and pulled the body off which took less than 30 minutes.

Last week I stripped and sanded it. As I took it apart I discovered that someone previously cut out the fiberglass for the rear seat an up the backrest. Gives you great access but the body gets pretty flexy.

The pics show that area is now set up to re-glass with several layers of sturdy cardboard to act as a mold. I ordered a roll of heavy fiberglass mat and some resin and need to tackle that today.

There were several layers of paint and primer over the original gel coat, which was also shot. It all came off pretty easy and Iím down to the original yellow finish.

Any suggestions on the color (paint, not gel coat)? Yellow could work but bright red maybe?
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Old 07-13-2018, 09:23 PM   #4
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Re: Dune Buggy

Cool!

I had a friend in HS that did the same with the Porsche motor, but in a square back. Fast fun little screamer!
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Old 07-14-2018, 09:18 PM   #5
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Re: Dune Buggy

Fun project! Way back when, I use to drool over those when I came across one. For color, a bright lime green would be catchy....maybe a little 60’s vibe going.
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Old 07-16-2018, 03:36 PM   #6
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Re: Dune Buggy

Thanks Doug!

This pic doesn't look much different but it's two layers of heavy mat fiberglass layer over the cardboard. Just a start on this part, more layers to come.
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Old 07-19-2018, 01:58 PM   #7
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Re: Dune Buggy

Looks like a blast. Congrats on your find and good luck in your ongoing tuning.
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Old 07-27-2018, 05:04 PM   #8
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Re: Dune Buggy

It looks like there's a Meyers Manx badge on the front. That would be cool if it was an original Manx.
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Old 07-30-2018, 11:12 PM   #9
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Re: Dune Buggy

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It looks like there's a Meyers Manx badge on the front. That would be cool if it was an original Manx.
There was a Meyers Manx badge and a serial number plate - both complete fakes. One of the previous owners made several changes to apparently try to pass it off as an original. I removed all of that and trashed it.

Rebuild of the rear seat area is 99% done. I finished up the sanding and got a few coats of high build primer/surfaces and a guide coat on. Let the next stage of sanding begin!
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Old 07-31-2018, 12:01 AM   #10
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Re: Dune Buggy

Look in good....sanding.....arghhh.....I don't want to ever see another piece of sandpaper when I get done with mine.....haha...
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Old 07-31-2018, 01:16 AM   #11
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Re: Dune Buggy

Blue or green would be my color choice, like 2000 VW Beetle green
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Old 08-01-2018, 05:49 PM   #12
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Re: Dune Buggy

What were the clues that it was not a genny Myers Manx? Just wondering.
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Old 08-02-2018, 12:47 AM   #13
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Re: Dune Buggy

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What were the clues that it was not a genny Myers Manx? Just wondering.
Iím not an expert at this but my best understanding is: No vin plate, no metal supports under the fiberglass in key areas, no metal frame behind the dash, headlight ďscallopsĒ at edge of hood are missing, no badge bump on the hood, and there'd be no need to make fake badges.
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Old 08-23-2018, 09:49 AM   #14
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Re: Dune Buggy

More progress. Got the body in good shape with cracks fixed and tons of old work removed/repaired. Primed and sanded and then decided on ďresale redĒ with a bright and pure red Omni single stage. Really happy with the way it turned out.
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Old 08-23-2018, 09:57 AM   #15
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Re: Dune Buggy

Next up was fixing rusty floors. I patched both rear sections and the drivers front floor, sealed and primed them, sprayed on LizardSkin and then some bedliner. Almost ready to reassemble it.

Also ordered a new wiring harness (only $60 since itís so minimal) and a new set of 7Ē chrome headlights to replace some old ugly lights.

While the bedliner was setting I replaced a rear trans seal, both axle boots, an axle seal, and did a bunch of little deferred maintenance items like filling the trans axle with gear oil after discovering it was nearly empty!
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Old 08-23-2018, 10:35 AM   #16
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Re: Dune Buggy

Next up was fixing rusty floors. I patched both rear sections and the drivers front floor, sealed and primed them, sprayed on LizardSkin and then some bedliner. Almost ready to reassemble it.

Also ordered a new wiring harness (only $60 since itís so minimal) and a new set of 7Ē chrome headlights to replace some old ugly lights.

While the bedliner was setting I replaced a rear trans seal, both axle boots, an axle seal, and did a bunch of little deferred maintenance items like filling the trans axle with gear oil after discovering it was nearly empty!
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Old 08-23-2018, 11:40 AM   #17
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Re: Dune Buggy

Wow looking real good!
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Old 08-25-2018, 01:00 AM   #18
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Re: Dune Buggy

You are doing fantastic work on yours! Reading your build brought back memories of mine. Mine was without a doubt the best camping machine I've owned! Started out as a street buggy, but the first time I went off road well..... 1600 single port, bus boxes, Transform trans, adj front beam, fan cooled oil cooler, etc. I whipped up a quick release cargo box for longer trips. It was darn fun.
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Old 09-01-2018, 11:00 PM   #19
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Re: Dune Buggy

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You are doing fantastic work on yours! Reading your build brought back memories of mine. Mine was without a doubt the best camping machine I've owned! Started out as a street buggy, but the first time I went off road well..... 1600 single port, bus boxes, Transform trans, adj front beam, fan cooled oil cooler, etc. I whipped up a quick release cargo box for longer trips. It was darn fun.
Great looking buggy! Looks like a blast. My original buggy was an off-road beast - I had white spoke wheels and Gates Commando tires, gas shocks, and a full roll cage built like a Baja pre-runner. It was a lot of fun!
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Old 09-24-2018, 11:05 PM   #20
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Re: Dune Buggy

I put the body back on the chassis and installed a new wiring harness, lights, seats, gauges, etc. Most of it was pretty straightforward, I just ended up fixing a few fluid leaks in the trans and engine along the way and had a few issues with the wiring. I bought a harness with instructions that sucked but eventually I figured it out. I got it pretty well done this past weekend and itís now up for sale. Too many projects!
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Old 09-25-2018, 08:01 AM   #21
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Re: Dune Buggy

That turned out nice! Cool project!
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Old 09-25-2018, 12:38 PM   #22
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Re: Dune Buggy

That's nice. I'm not sure why, but I want it, LOL
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Old 09-25-2018, 09:49 PM   #23
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Re: Dune Buggy

The buggy came out very nice! Good luck with the sale, though I doubt you will have any trouble.
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Old 09-26-2018, 01:41 AM   #24
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Re: Dune Buggy

Nice result!
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Old 09-28-2018, 11:55 PM   #25
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Re: Dune Buggy

Thanks guys!
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