Tuesday, May 29, 2012


I set up the tent to open on the drivers side and with the drop-side down there is access to the bed of the truck through the ground tent.  Really happy with the quality of the TJM Yulara tent.  The vestibule is a bit more work to set up but has a lot of storage space on the floor, making more room for sleeping on the cargo platform of the truck itself.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Reflective Stripe and Centre Caps

Not much to say here.  I added a reflective side decal stripe with 3m tape.  Also added VW centre caps on the wheels. 

Roof Tent

Added a roof top tent for summer camping.  Picked up the TJM Yulara model and optional annex.  I'm really happy with the quality of the tent and fittings.  The picture below doesn't show the annex attached (thats it on the ground below the tent),  but the plan is to use the annex to access a bunk in the bed of the truck with the passenger side dropside lowered.  The annex will provide out of weather storage as well.  I might add an inexpensive awning on the passenger side of the cab as well.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Trailer Park Lift Kit

After spacers installed:

Before spacers:

Spacers made from old nylon cutting boards. Boards were cut out using a drill press, then the edges were smoothed with an orbital sander:

Broken springs.  These were replaced with good ones take from the syncro parts van:

Saturday, February 19, 2011

wheel paint and rear slider window

I finally got around to painting the wheels. Simply removed the wheels, then scuffed and degreased them, then followed with a coat of zinc primer and a shot of Plasticoat wheel paint. I'm quite happy with the wheel paint. It went on with a bit of texture and looks ok for now. I probably should have washed the truck while I was at it :)
Started work on resizing the van sliders to fit the rear windows of the truck. Cutting the frame will be the easy part. The frame cuts will be made at the midway point along the fixed glass portion. As the fixed glass is then glued into the frame with sealant, the whole unit should maintain adequate structural integrity without welding.
The fixed portion of the glass is very close to the size found in the stock doka slider and so I won't need to have it cut at all. The sliding portion on the other hand will have to be remade to measure 34cm. I'll try having one made from tempered glass but may have to settle for lexan.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Sunroof Doka?

Considering adding one or two pop-up sunroofs to the truck. The largest available is a 22X38" model by CRL in their Newport line. Laid templates out on the truck roof to get an idea how it would look with cutouts over both the front and back seats. Then I'll just need to modify the rear windows to open using some van sliders cut down. Summer will be a lot cooler with ventilation all around.


Friday, December 17, 2010

High power headlights and third brake light added

Short days and dark winter nights and so it was time for lighting upgrades....

Bought an LED light bar to serve as a third brake light. Third brake light wire runs behind the gates top (at bottom of photo) wooden slat. I routed a channel on the back side of the slat from the brake light to the hinged upright on the driver side. The wire runs along the route and exits at a hole drilled behind the upright, then down to the hinge where another hole was drilled through to access the vehicle wiring behind the drivers side tail light. At some point, I'm going to redrill the hole at the centre of the hinge so the wire won't be exposed at all. Finished by tapping onto the (black and red) wire at the tail light plug and it's good to go.

(note: a bit of a screw up resulted in to me having to separately ground the rear drop-side. The wire can be seen at far left in top photo. Initially, I was hoping that the new light would ground through the drop-side hinges. This didn't work because the drop-sides, when closed, sit up on rubber bumpers built into the drop-side hinges. These bumpers are designed to prevent rattling and also unfortunately serve to insulate the drop sides, preventing a good ground.)

Not much to show here. Added the Go Westy kit which included relays for the high and low beams (seen in the picture on the top right of the fuse box), high power Hella bulbs bulbs for both the high and low beams and new 20 amp fuses. A quick project which took about 30 minutes. The Go Westy kit directions make the project simple to follow. Headlights are now much brighter and the power to them no longer all runs through the previously overworked headlight switch. If you are doing this, make sure the ground contacts are very good or a lot of heat can build up.

Go Westy kit contents:

Also replaced all tail light bulbs with high power luxeon LED bulbs from Super Bright LED.
Oh yeah, and replaced a non-working reverse light switch on the transmission. I wonder how many people I freaked out in parking lots over the past year....

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Swivel Seat/Table

Added a seat swivel from a salvage van. Simply cleaned up the old welds with a grinder, then welded it into the passenger side.

I picked up a front table bracket from the same van at the wreckers and had it powdercoated. Now we can use a table from my westy in the doka when we stop for lunch.

Thursday, July 29, 2010


16" steelies from Small Car with 215 70 R16 BF Goodrich AT TA.

Maybe put the syncro mud flaps and bumper end caps on in a day or two....

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

decals etc

Added OEM style decals and did the arches and rocker panels in black.

Thursday, July 8, 2010


A bit more trim and OEM style decals to put back on but its pretty much done. May do the wheel arches in black before adding the small Syncro mud flaps. I'm really a bit tired of looking at it so I'm going to hold off on the 16 wheels and engine conversion.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Hardware powdercoating

Sent the dropside latches and hardware for powdercoating. The plastic handles had to go as they were cracked and covering some surface rust (and in any case would have melted in the kiln). Replacement handles were fabricated out of aluminium stock which was then rivetted in place and covered with a black latex dip.

Rebuilt handle after 2 coats of latex dip:

First Step: two of the latches; one with plastic handle removed to expose the rust:

After media blast and powder coating:
The quality of the last paint job is evident in these next two pictures:

New handle hand filed from aluminium stock rivetted in place:

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Found my colour

This is not my truck of course, but I was lucky enough to see this one outside my work the other day. It just happens to be the same colour as mine originally was. My interior is still this colour and so I'll be painting the exterior this way again.

It is Scheifer Blau or Slate Blue Dealer order code: K6 or OEM: LH5V (PPG-Ditzler 12337/ L361), and I've already had some single stage Urethane mixed up to put on when the time comes.

Filling and Sanding!

Not much time to work on the truck lately, but a couple of very late nights and I've gotten a bit done. (Crummier than usual pictures this time for some reason)

The door-step in place:

Rust repair welded in on passenger side b piller with a couple of patches bonded over top with 3M autobody adhesive. I'll add body filler to fair this in:

Panels replaced and filler added. The other side looks pretty much the same. Tons of sanding to do:

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Sound deadening

Spent a bit of time working on quieting the cab. Worked with a combination of the self adhesive aluminium/rubber mentioned in an earlier post, fire resistant acoustic foam, reflectix insulation and some heavy rubber matting I had left over from another project.

I rolled the aluminium/rubber on with a large spark plug socket and sealed some of the edges with aluminium roofing tape. The butyl rubber compound won't off-gas and so I didn't worry about sealing all of the edges. Also, as the intent is only to prevent a harmonic resonance, there is no need to cover the entire surface with this material. The reflectix and acoustic foam will provide thermal insulation and attenuate reflected sound. As well, I pulled the bench seat out and cut some heavy rubber to cover the cab floor. It will be under the stock matting.

I ended up insulating all 3 of the cab doors as well as the floor, bulkhead behind the rear bench seat and driver rear side of the cab. Eventually, I'll pull the dash and do that area as well.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Door step repair

I'll be using All Metal body filler for all major work on the truck. Unlike regular body filler which is primarily composed of talc and which can absorb moisture, the All Metal is made with aluminium and so resists water a lot better. The down side: its more work to sand and some say won't take paint as well. So I'll just overcoat it with a thin layer of regular filler before painting.

The bottom of the step. The replacement step has the holes that VW uses to anchor the plastic step pad. They are the problem source of moisture which caused all the rust in the first place, so I'm going to seal them and do away with the step pads completely.

I've just used some slugs from an electrical junction box to seal the holes. With a bit of shaping, the slugs were worked to conform to the curved surface a bit better. I tack welded them in place, then sealed the edges with JB weld and used the All Metal filler to fill the depression on the other side. Once they are in place, I'll spray some rubberized rockerguard in place of the step pad to provide a bit of grip and sound deadening.

New Engine

New SVX engine for the doka:
Came in a shiny box; a 94 SVX that I can drive until I do the conversion.  (The Porsche in the background is NOT mine!!)