A few months ago my wife Diane and I decided I should start looking for a “retirement” project, which is a couple of years away. We discussed several ideas, but finally decided on a Volkswagen.
During my younger days in California, I owned a 1960 and a 1968. My wife, Diane owned a 1971 and in 1972 I bought a new flat windshield Super Beetle ($2,552.00), which we kept for 14 years. My brother Mark, who still lives in California has been restoring beetles and Porsche for years and his expertise came in very handy. He looked at some potential cars, but all fit into the “project” category. I am not a mechanic, I only break things and can’t fix them!
Since I did not want a project car, I started looking for a solid car that would also be a good daily commuter. I wanted something that I could get into and fix as my time and expertise improved. We were very fortunate to come across this car, which was exactly what we were looking for. We purchased the car in Mesa, Arizona.
The VIN is 117300262 and was first registered in September 1967 (New was $2,167). Ironic, since that was the same month I entered boot camp with the Marines. The history of the car is unknown, but most of its life was in Arizona. There is no rust, the pans are good and everything operates except the heat and defrost. Not a big deal here in Arizona. All the parts are there, though the cables are long gone. They are good examples of something to do when time allows. I have had the car up to 70 mph, and it runs straight and true. No smoke, the clutch is good, but the brakes are going to need some loving care this summer. I’ll start with the fronts and then tackle the rear.
The interior of the car is spot on. The only issue is the “chrome” trim on the drivers arm rest is missing. It also came with the original seat belt modules, which were in pieces. I was able to rebuild the driver side, but the passenger unit is missing the return guide for the spring. So in the interim I have installed a set of lap belts from Wolfsburg. I really appreciate the original dash, even though a previous owner had installed an under-dash Kenwood radio. It sounds good, but I could have cared less. I prefer to hear that distinctive 1967 rumble!
During the first week I had the car, the hand break came out in my hand! That little experience brought back many memories. In the six weeks I’ve had the car I rebuilt the wiper motor, replaced the wiper shafts, changed the flasher solenoid and fixed a minor oil leak. My mechanical skills are looking up! I have to thank Michael Mittl at German Autowerks in Mesa, who has been a big help and very patient with my questions.
If I look closely I can always find something that I would like to do. Then I remind myself the car is only 47 years young. I can only find one picture of one of our beetles. It was the 1968 and my wife and I will still dating. The picture was taken in the spring of 1972 in Newport Beach, California. In the original photo there are four other VW’s in the picture, including the bus right behind it. I had to “recreate” the original and had fun doing that. By the way, I bought that 1972 right before my wife and I got married. It is long gone, but my wife and I are still going strong!
Ron & Diane Waller
Thanks, Ron & Diane, for sharing your ’67 with 1967beetle.com.