This Month's Feature VW

53 Years

The story starts back in 1965 when my dad bought a Type 1 off of the lot from San Bruno VW. The VW he bought was one of a few with a sunroof and because he lived in California, you need to have a sunroof at a minimum. This was my dad's trusty daily driver where he would commute from Mountain View to Palo Alto for work. Naturally it was also used to take my mom out on dates, camping, etc. When they finally married back in 1967 and started to think about a family, they naturally bought a VW Bay Window Type 2. These two cars were they mainstay until the late 70's and they sold the van. However, the VW stayed with the family.

I remember as a kid going to see the San Francisco 49er's in the Beetle back in the mid 80's with my dad at Candlestick park. I also remember taking a long road trip with him to go camping to Burney Falls State park in far Northern California, even during the peak heat season. The car just seemed to keep running, of course with some occasional wrenching. I helped him with those projects as well. I think he liked my help because my hands were smaller than his back in those days.

This was his daily driver until he had one of those dreaded engine fires you hear and see. He was fortunate because someone flagged him down and with the help of a fire extinguisher from a friendly motorist, he was able to put the fire out relatively quickly. At this point he knew it was time for a newer vehicle and he bought his first pickup truck in 1986. This But he still couldn't part with the Beetle. He had the motor completely rebuilt and the paint repaired. After he remarried and bought a home it was time to find a storage spot for the VW. It was either garaged or under an awning for a number of years in Morgan Hill at my uncles property before I took the car over and first started to dissemble it for what I thought at the time was going to be a simple restoration. This was around 1999.

Well, then I got married, had a kid and the car sat in my garage for years mostly untouched with parts in about four different large boxes. To be frank, I wasn't really interested in doing much to it. That was until I moved around 2004. My buddy George owned a body shop at the time and he and I agreed to have him paint the car when he had some free time away from insurance work. Needless to say, when owning a body shop, there wasn't a whole lot of free time George had. I didn't mind, since life was still throwing me curve balls, I was getting a divorce, I was traveling more for work, my career was changing and I was taking on more responsibility, and you know, life. The car was with George for another five years! I guess I can chalk it up to free storage....

Fast forward to 2009. George called me one day and said, "Hey man, I started working on your car." This was the point where I knew I had to start getting serious about finishing it. So it started. This is the VW in it's first photo from George with the paint being removed down to the metal.

The pan then came to me with the engine on it and I started the disassembly process in September 2011. Well, at least the pan had a nice place to rest in my garage for a few years. Yes, there have been some gaps in the process!!

My buddy George finished all the paint in December 2011 and it sat in my garage, body off the pan for another three years! I think I was more intimidated then excited when George returned the car to me because after seeing the body work, I knew I had to take this car to the next level.
Another move in 2014 and this was when I finally made the decision to get this car done. Moving all of the boxes, the unfinished pan, the transmission, the engine, and the restored body and having to take multiple trips, it was the kick in my rear I needed to get this car done.

Fast forward to the finished pan with all of the goodies including a rebuilt and powder coated transmission with a freeway flyer, four wheel disc brakes, fully dynamatted, 4" narrowed beam, adjustable front and rear shocks and fitted with Empi Fuchs. I finally took the finished car out for it's maiden voyage, 98% complete with my dad on May 20, 2018.

I have shown this car a few times at shows around the South San Francisco Bay Area and I drive it there. Although not taken out daily, it has about 1,000 miles on the car since I finished it a year and a half ago. I plan on trying to show it more at shows both in NorCal and in SoCal as my schedule allows.

Kurt Specht

Laptop/Tablet Wallpaper

Mobile Wallpaper

Apple: Touch one of the images and "Save Image". Go to "Photos" and select the picture. Tap the box with the up arrow at the right top corner. Tap "Use as Wallpaper" pinch to size and "Set Both"

Windows: Right Click an image and select as "Set as background" on your laptop!

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