1972 crossdresser Resto

Discussion in 'Restorations' started by TravellingRed, Jun 27, 2020.

  1. New member and new owner of a 1972 crossdresser which whilst not in bad condition needs some work. I've bought it as an unfinished project with a few bits of Devon interior included a variety of odds and ends and a hole in the roof with the flange for attaching the pop top removed (they planned on fitting a Paris cabriolet roof).
    I've managed to source a pop top which came with a JK cap included but it was a bit rough and missing the fabric bellows so I've fettled and repainted all the steel work and I'm just waiting on a new canvas before I assemble it (I'll post pictures when I'm on with it).
    As I've dug around I've found the underneath and chassis is pretty solid but the following needs attention:
    - n/s front wheel well/seat mount is rotten
    - n/s cab footwell is rotten
    - windscreen surround at the bottom is showing corrosion
    - inner windscreen panel is really rotten and full of holes
    - n/s rear wheel well is shot to pieces and was full of filler and years of overlapping patches.

    All this is a little annoying as it has just been painted by the previous owners and it bothers me I'll have to start taking the paint and windscreen back out to correct the issues but such is life! I do have a decent size garage but I use it as a workshop and a home for my motorbikes so I've bought a clarke temporary garage to lash onto the front of it and create a dry area to work on the bus.

    I've started on the front wheel well and cab floor with panels ordered from heritage parts. So less waffle more photos:

    In her temporary home

    N/S Cab footwell


    Wheel well

    There was an old repair between the arch and the wheel well and it was a bit of a pig to get out as it was seam welded and old metal left underneath

    The horrors of the inner windscreen panel. My plan is to buy the complete panel from Schofields and possibly the upper front panel repair section as well and replace the whole lot but I can't decide whether the outer panel is bad enough to warrant replacing.
  2. Hi from West Lancashire - looks like you know what you are doing - should be good when finished
  3. I'm actually a metal worker by trade (though not of the car variety!) so I'm quite comfortable chopping and welding. I'm just considering whilst I'm in the area whether to hack out the passenger side bulkhead and fit a swivel seat on the passenger side...I presume you have to beef it up somewhere though if you lose the bulkhead? As it stands the previous owner provided me with a bench seat for the passenger side but I'm not overly keen on it as there is only me and the missus and it seems impractical as it blocks the walk through.
    cunny44 likes this.
  4. Welcome.

    Walkthrough Buses are a thing, so it can be done, what VW did to add strength back in when they removed the bulkhead, I am not sure.

    Someone who knows, will be along shortly, I am certain.

    I also have a cross-over, we're a small but, ahem, elite club :D
  5. Zed

    Zed Gradually getting grumpier

    See that strip attached inside the wheel arch at the rear angling down to the bulkhead. Two things. Good- it shows it was a high quality genuine VW Brazil arch...but it should have been removed prior to fitting the arch on a 70's bus, it clashes with the bulge on the bulkhead and it's a bad mud trap. Just a few spot welds get it off the arch, but no doubt it's been seam welded to the bulkhead.

    The upper bulkhead can be removed leaving a small web in the corner. The web should be folded 5mm 90degs...that how Westfalias are done. Spotwelds on the b post so it comes away quite neatly.

  6. Zed

    Zed Gradually getting grumpier

    Someone made a mess of fitting the arch, but I think you can save it fitting the tub. I have great photos stuck on a broken laptop, but someone will be along to provide, or browse the resto threads.
    F_Pantos likes this.
  7. I'm glad that strip isn't needed as I made a right mess of it getting the tub out! I'll be able to rescue the arch but it's been a right pig to get the tub out without wrecking it. The floor and step has a few 3 layer repairs as well that are a pain.
    Zed and F_Pantos like this.
  8. I got the remnants of the wheel tub out today and also the section of floor in front of it I'm replacing (after I lashed down my temporary garage a bit better, I thought I was going to take off!). My intention is to clean off the old underseal while I have good access and remove any surface rust and give everything a good going over with red oxide rustoleum paint. I do have a question regarding the new tub though; on the side which welds to the arch it has a double joggle as if it should locate over two skins? As I can see it the inner part of the arch is spot welded underneath the outer arch and where the floor tub attaches it would be spot welded to the flange of the outer arch? So why is there a double joggle? Am I missing something as I'm of a mind to just trim it off...it's made as if there is a triple skin there???
  9. Haven't you fixed that laptop yet, @zedders ?
  10. Zed

    Zed Gradually getting grumpier

    No it's had it.
    F_Pantos likes this.
  11. Take it to KC computers in Burscough village - they will retrieve all your stuff off the hard drive
    Zed likes this.
  12. Zed

    Zed Gradually getting grumpier

    I can do that...when I get another one to put it on. :)
    cunny44 likes this.
  13. Made a bit of progress the last few days, had to cut the arch where it attached to the B pillar as it wasn't lined up properly so it was throwing out the tub and realign it, luckily it wasn't welded on very well so it wan't too hard to detatch.

    I got all the floor out I wanted to, I noticed there should be a strengthening piece where the two chassis rails join and it was missing, someone had cut it out, badly, and gouged the chassis rails.


    Also there was a bad repair in the corner close to the A pillar:


    This had to come out as it was horrible!


    new repair piece welded in and I also wire brushed and sand blasted the chassis rails and front panel


    Painted with red oxide rustoleum. I thought it's easier to get what I can whilst I have access from the top rather than doing it all on my back!

    Floor repair pinned in place as a trial fit, will need to trim out for the step and a little bit off to fit the wheel tub, but that's tomorrows job!
  14. Been hacking back more metal but I think I've got as far back as I need to now; I've removed a small section of the front of the cargo floor as the top hat section looked rotten and there were some dodgy floor repairs where it met the bulkhead (there was a 1/4" gap between the floor and bulkhead and it was just welded to the top hat).

    The sills look good but the outer sill has been replaced and it's a terrible fit so I'm going to replace that. The inner sills look OK but the ends where it meets the bulkhead and jacking point look a bit bodged, I'm considering chopping out the end couple of inches and making a repair piece but I could do to know how it's supposed to look....anyone?!

    Scraped all the old underseal off and it looks in pretty good nick, I'll give it a good wire wheeling, sand blast and blather it in red oxide primer before it goes back together.


    The bulkhead is a patchwork of old repairs so it's coming out; I have the new panel from Schofield's which I have extended so it will cover the extent of the damage, I'm going to do a swivel passenger seat anyway so it only needs to come as high as the wheel well. I've left the rest of the bulkhead in for the minute just to add strength to the structure whilst I'm chopping out everything else.

    Majority of the bulkhead out, it was a right pig due to all the old repairs, Ive also marked the floor for cutting so I can repair it properly and remove the top hat floor support and make a new one. The ends of the sills are a right mess, the outrigger looks new but like everything else it looks like they fitted it with their eyes shut.

    Floor out and top hat removed; it's actually pretty sound after where I've cut it so I'll just splice a new piece in.


    This is how the end of the sills look now, it was all just seam weld together with bits of old tin under repair sections. There was also a bad repair on the top hat where it met the inner sill. If anyone has a good picture of how it should be I'd appreciate it.
    Hopefully I should have this section zipped back up soon and I can start on the horror story that is the lower windscreen surround, or the rear arch...I haven't decided yet!

    Edit: Having looked at the Schofield's outrigger/Jacking point combo the one thats on my van looks like a right cobbled together mess, considering ordering a new one and replacing it whilst I'm in the area...
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2020
  15. Good work going on there. I bought Schofield's outrigger/jacking point combo last week and it's quality... deffo recommended!

    Sent from my SM-T813 using Tapatalk
  16. Pulled the trigger on one last night. Spoke too soon regarding getting all the rust out in the front passenger side...should've known it was the kiss of death mentioning it!

    The floor was rotten towards the middle, and the top hat was shot to pieces. Luckily the top hat I made for the bit I knew about was long enough to cover it. The front bulkhead was gone at the bottom but I already have the Schofield's panel so I'll just use the full panel. The vents in the walk through have some rot but it's not too bad and easily fixable, are these linked into the heater system?

    DSCN6315.JPG DSCN6318.JPG DSCN6319.JPG
    F_Pantos and MK-Bay like this.
  17. The new outrigger/jacking point combo came today and whilst I was peering at the top hat/floor/vents/rust some repairs on the cross member started niggling at me; where it meets the chassis rail it's been cut at some point in the past and an angle welded in either side to attach it to the chassis rail. It wasn't particularly well done and after peering and pondering for about and hour I decided to get on my back and chop it out. I hacked it back to where the first cut out is and made a new piece out of 2mm steel, folded it up and gave it a lick of paint. I'll fit it tomorrow along with the new jacking point and hopefully it will start coming together in this area. Pics to follow...
  18. Looking good

    Your wiring looks v neat and tidy, so hopefully that won't cause you any pain
  19. It does look pretty good even behindo the dash.

    Looking underneath I think I'll need to replace the centre section of the right chassis rail. I see they're available on schofields but how much of a pain are they to get out? It looks pretty tied in where it meets the front section.
  20. The double joggle outer bit is to hook the edge of the rubber arch mats under!

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