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  #1  
Old 12-06-2008, 04:06 AM
Slow Paul Slow Paul is offline
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Default Slow Paul's 1970 VW Type 1

*Pleased be advised this is the complete history of my First Love. It's long, and I won't be offended if you don't read this short novel.*

Some of you know I still have my first car. It's a 1970 Volkswagen Beetle. This was the car that shaped me to the person I am today. The other day I was in my parents garage, where my Bug is stored, making a tv stand for my new tv. My dad sawed off a small chunk of wood and threw it towards the trash can siting at the front of my bug. It missed and hit the fender making a little dent. That's when I realized, I really miss my beloved Bug.

The history of this particular VW goes bock to 1970. My grandmother took my mother on a trip to Europe after she graduated high school. After landing in London and taking the ferry across the English channel to Belgium, then a bus to Wolfsburg Germany, my mother saw the biggest building she had ever seen, the Volkswagen factory. My grandmother had arranged to pick her new car up at the factory and then they would travel all around Europe for two weeks with the brand new factory fresh Bug. It cost $1600.00 and an extra $35.00 for the full set of Coco Mats they splurged on.

After leaving the factory my mother and her mother headed onto the AutoBahn en route to their first stop, Rome Italy. My mother remembers my grandmother learning quickly to stay in the slower lanes after nearly being rear end a few times by speeding Porsches and what not. The Rome traffic was terrible and after circling the hotel for what my mother remembers seemed like 3 hours, they found a spot and decided that it would be in their best interests to get the Beetle to the port in France where it would go on it's voyage to California.

So after Rome they traveled to Florence and saw that city then headed up to France traveling though Nice and the principality of Monaco en route to the port where they would see the VW off.

Upon arriving back home my mother learned that she had gotten the job that she had interviewed for before they left for Europe. My grandmother asked if my mother would like to take over the payments on the yet to arrive Beetle. Without hesitation my mother agreed. My mother and her then boyfriend, who soon after became her husband and my father went down to the Port of Los Angels to pick up the VW as it had arrived.

I gets kind of bland after this. My mother drove it for a few years everyday into downtown LA. My dad rode a motorcycle, but when he landed a job that was a quite a bit further than his current job, they opted to get another car. My dad took over driving the Beetle.

I was born and as far back I can remember, completely infatuated with the little yellow Bug. The Herbie movies and old Transformers cartoons filled my head with love for this little car. Until the day in 1989 when my world came crashing down. The Bug had broken down. (It spun a crankshaft bearing) My parents where going to get rid of the Bug, until I pleaded the best case an 8 year old could come up with. I basically cried my eyes out screaming that I didn't wanna seen the Bug go. I said that I would fix it, with my own money....8 years old remember.....In the end my parents agreed to keep the Bug. So it sat in the driveway for the next 8 years.

At the age of 15, around my birthday my dad woke me up early one morning and told me that we were gonna start working on the Bug. My dad's truck got demoted to the driveway as me pushed the bug, with it's roted tires into the garage. First thing was first. The floor had completely rotted out. Off with the body and to the shop it went for new floor pans.

While the chassis was gone and the body was sitting on the floor, we had gotten the engine case back from the machine shop where they had re-bored the it and machined the heads at the same time. All new German internals went into the engine. Pistons, rings, main and rod bearings oil pump, and everything else.

With a completed engine and a rolling chassis with fresh floors, it was time to put the Bug back together. It was a pretty simple task, one weekend at most. One of the greatest moments of my life so far was cranking that fresh engine over that my father and I built for the first time. It fired up and ran perfect from the get go. We had built a super tight motor.

By the time the bug was nearly ready I was 15 and a half. Drivers permit time. I wanted the first car I ever drove to be my Bug. Upon getting my permit, my dad pulled the it into the street and slid over to the passengers seat. Another great moment was me NOT stalling it on the first try. It was awesome, like all my childhood dreams had come true, I was driving the bug. I only went to the end of the street and then turned around and came back, but it was a truly momentous occasion in my life.

I turned 16 just before school started. I had a pretty firm grasp on driving stick and driving in general. So that first day of school when I rolled into the lot with my precious Beetle, I felt on top of the world.

Over the next 2 years I cut my teeth on driving the Bug. I took it on the freeway to see how fast it would go, spun it out in the rain in my high school parking lot and took MANY trips up to the local canyon in the wee hours of the morning while my parents slept.

It all changed in one day. I was driving to my grandmothers house after school to help my dad make wheelchair ramps. My grandmothers health was failing and I would do anything to spend time with her. When I pulled into her driveway, I was hit by an impatient driver in a Ford Taurus. the lip of my front bumper had grabbed the front wheel well of the Taurus and torn both doors down to the rear wheel. I was in shock, then the anger had hit me. My all-original Bug was ruined. The police made me go inside my grandmothers house as I was screaming at the lady who had been so careless.

The Bug got fixed. I needed a new bumper, the brackets for the bumper and two new fenders. All the parts cost me $211.00. I did all the labor myself one day after school. My Yukon Yellow Beetle now had two black fenders, earing it the name Pikachu at school.

When my grandmother passed she left me with a bit of money to put towards what ever I wanted. My feeling for the VW has dwindled. I wanted speed, so a bought a new car and parked the Bug in the garage. About 6 months after I did this, I decided to strip it down and prepare it for paint. After striping it to the bare shell, I got the cheapest, piece of crap paint job my measly paychecks could buy.

Slowly, the Bug has been put back together. Currently it needs to have the electrical completely gone over, (I unpluged EVERYTHING!) the headliner needs to be redone, (Don't let friends that THINK they know what they are doing do anything) and the door window regulators and vent wings need to go back in. It doesn't sound like much, but it'll still take some time.

So there it is, the story of my Bug. I got a few pictures, but most of the cool stuff will have to be scanned in. I'm hoping to have my Bug up and running within a year, as it's got to be present for something special. It's gonna stay stock, so no lowering it or turning it into a dune buggy. Thanks for reading.

The only picture I can find on my computer:

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  #2  
Old 12-06-2008, 04:16 AM
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Konstantinos Konstantinos is offline
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That is one hell of a story for one hell of a car I hope you have many many more memorable years driving that car
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Old 12-06-2008, 06:02 AM
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Good to see you're dusting off the ol' beetle Paul...
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Old 12-06-2008, 06:24 AM
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Nice dude! I hope you get to drive it for many a year to come! I only wish i still had my first car still...
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Old 12-06-2008, 09:01 AM
Slow Paul Slow Paul is offline
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Found another picture, shot the 2nd day I had my MINI....

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Old 12-06-2008, 09:05 AM
Slow Paul Slow Paul is offline
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And another one....I think this picture was taken on accident, because I can't tell what I was trying to shoot. This is how the Bug sits currently. It also acts as my storage bin as well as a thing for my dad to lean on.

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Old 12-06-2008, 03:09 PM
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rlnewby rlnewby is offline
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That was one epic story. I hope it never ends.

I have always liked the beetle before I got my mini I was toying with the idea of making rat-rod one.
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Old 12-06-2008, 05:35 PM
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Batrugger Batrugger is offline
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It is cool to have something with so much personal history. It needs to live again
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Old 12-06-2008, 06:27 PM
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Looks like it's in great condition, and all the stories really add to it. Great car
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Old 12-06-2008, 07:22 PM
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very cool story. need any weekend help, gimme a ring
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Old 12-06-2008, 07:33 PM
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That's awesome Paul! The title kinda threw me off for a sec (I thought it was mine! lol). Great story, and I'm looking forward to seeing the bug in completion!
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Old 12-06-2008, 08:28 PM
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Kick-ass Paulie.
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Old 12-08-2008, 02:36 PM
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very cool that you still have it. I hope things work out for you and that you can get her back in shape soon. Great story! thanks for sharing. it made me smile, several times. and whence a couple times too. Stupid Ford Taurus drivers.
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Old 12-08-2008, 03:01 PM
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Very cool story

Bugs are nearly indestructable if you keep an eye on the rust...
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Old 12-08-2008, 04:16 PM
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Great story Paul.

Kind of reminds me of my parents Triumph Spitfire. My parents keep saying they are going to chuck it, but both my sister and myself will not let them do it.
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