By the time I finally decided to make the leap and reconnect with the Volkswagen of my youth, my children were grown and pretty much out of my wallet. I was well into retirement. I also believed I was old enough, and wise enough, to get involved in what surely would become an addictive and expensive hobby. The ’67 Beetle.
My search involved about four years of mostly stopping and checking out every Volkswagen Bug I saw for sale, and eventually jumping onto craigslist to expand my search. I wasn’t looking for any particular year, but wanted a daily driver, and to stay in the 1960’s because that is the era I grew up in.
At this point I would say that, for me, craigslist was a disaster almost from the start! Many of the ads did not match the stories, yes stories, listed in the ad and the cars were pure junk! Also, many of the sellers were “flippers” who had the best stories because they didn’t have a history with the car. Their stories were used to hide issues with the car so that they could make a fast buck! And, some of the sellers that were genuine had been long abused by “flippers” with low balling their offers and abusive negotiation tactics so many times that when a serious buyer, like me, came along I caught the brunt of their frustration when I began asking questions about the car! Sorry Mike in Paso Robles, but I really was a serious buyer and not jerking you around!
I was lured into the mistaken confidence that by buying this car from a business that restored Volkswagens for a living, that what they said I could pretty much believe. I believed, and was told by them, their business reputation depended on satisfied customers! Mistake! But, in their defense I was anxious for and very tired of looking at “beater” Volkswagen Bugs! So anxious and tired I overlooked some key things they did say and some mechanical problems they had reasonable answers for! After all this car is 46 years old! All Volkswagens leak! The solenoid rarely does that! The car wanders because of the wide tires in front, but when you put the stock ones on that will stop!
After purchasing the car, I drove it home pleased with my purchase. After all, when I put the stock tires on all this wandering would disappear! This picture shows the hood, which I didn’t notice before I bought it, would turn out to be the real cause of the wandering! The car had been in an accident and the left front fender was tucked under the hood. The left front tire protruded from under the fender while the right front tire seemed to fit properly.
A trip to my mechanic eventually revealed a bent front axel beam, bent tie rods and a worn out steering box and ball joints! The entire front end had to be replaced! Additionally, the starter will have to be replaced he told me and that new noise in the engine are are the bearings in the generator that will need to be replaced! The mechanic recommended I sell the car and start over. I rejected his recommendation and decided I was going to have this car fixed and drive it while I slowly restored, I mean renewed it.
One of the positive aspects of my purchase was that I stumbled upon what is one of the best years for Volkswagen! I discovered 1967beetle.com, and through reading the articles I have become more assured that in the long run, me, and my Papa’s Slugbug will be ok together as a team to bring him back to the glory days! Although I have accepted my 1967 Bug will never be restored, but only renewed, I am still happy I bought it. I plan to stick to a slow “renewing” schedule and hope to have it in to a body shop early next year to correct the body work to better visually align the body, clean up the spare tire area so that a spare tire will fit properly into the well and to align the doors so that they close properly. Who knows maybe a radio might be in the immediate future!
I take full responsibility for letting my guard down when I bought this car, but Southern California is a great place to drive a Volkswagen and I plan to drive my 1967 Volkswagen a lot! Look for me in Ventura County Slugbug players! But, first I need to replace that noisy generator!
Thanks, Richard, for sharing your ’67 with 1967beetle.com.