Wednesday, January 30, 2008

"Alice" - The Nosejob, Part 1

Stacey and Bryon's beloved bus "Alice" has been in my garage for a week and a half. Bryon and I have done a number of things to it so far, including:
  • Complete removal of the BA6 gas heater
  • Installation of heat risers and heat control flaps
  • Installation of "accordian tubes" and replacement centre heat tube
  • Adjustment of the shifter to allow the reverse lockout to function again
  • Installation of a ground strap from the battery to the engine (tranny ground strap was missing causing lots of electrical woes)
  • We also plan to adjust the valves, check the tranny fluid, and possibly install his deep cycle battery

During this process the need for repair under the front windshield came up. I offered to help (I'm learning to keep my mouth shut!). Bryon and I visited another VW dude in Grimsby on the weekend to pick up a BusDepot lower windshield replacement set as well as some other bits. Bryon did well, actually, and scored retractable front seat belts among other things.

Anyway, the carnage was exposed on Sunday night when I pulled the windshield and scraped away some of the rotten filler. The captions below detail the process so far:

So I guess this is why the bus was leaking?
Another shot of the rust.

So that's why the paint was bubbling! All the water leaking from the windshield seal would have found its way right behind the turn signals.
A little less on this side.
Bryon also wanted the tire mount removed.
Here I'm scribing the cut line for where the new metal will go.
Ditto for here, but notice it doesn't extend far enough, there's too much rot.

After cleaning the area I planned my attack.
I had a brainwave in Grimsby and had Bryon take the door slider beltline covers from the donor bus. These are easily removed, but have the right curvature (or so I hoped).
After cutting a section that had similar curvature I trial fitted it in place.
Here I've tacked it in place. The top will be trimmed to butt against the upper metal replacement next.
This shot shows the comparison of the old and new metal.
More to come! Stay tuned!