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Hip to be Square

I've got a 1968 VW Squareback, I bought this from the original family owners, still with the black and yellow California plates on it. I grew up in So Cal and always loved VWs, but sadly never got one. I hung out with the mini truck scene and started building mini trucks instead. Well now, I finally got my first VW 20 years later, and took some of my mini truck background and used it to influence my build with this. I'll start with the motor, I tried to keep the original EFI set up since this was the first car to feature this new set up and thought it'd be cool to have it running still. But after months and months of messing with it and finding no hope or light at the end of the tunnel I ditched it for a set of 34 Weber ICT's. Drove the 1600 DP motor till it was finally puking oil and had to do an upgrade at that point. I took the opportunity to make a jump up in horsepower and had a new 1835 built by Geoff Hart Performance engines.

During the motor swap I shaved a few of the unnecessary holes in the engine bay and made did some trimming to make room for the oil cooler and fan for the new full flow oil set up. Due to the air ride set up being above the transmission I was limited on where I could mount the remote oil cooler, and found a spot it tucked away perfect off to the side of the motor. Once the motor was built, I color matched the tins to the original paint code and bolted it all back together and tucked it away back up in the rear. The body of the car is all original to include a few dings and bumps here and there. I did a two stage cut and buff bringing out the original shine and had one of my local pinstripers throw down a few lines throughout the car to set it off. I had to search for a while to find the 17 inch Escara wheels to have just the right look. I converted the rear end to and IRS set up and built a custom rear air ride set up, the front has a custom Punch Drunk Customs dual air bag beam to tuck all four corners and get this thing on the ground. The Dakota Digital Air management set up controls Parker valves and four Slam Specialties air bags. Up front under the hood is a set of Viair Compressors, and a spun aluminum air tank custom painted by Crash Customs, also with a little pin stripping on it!

The interior is still a work in progress, but so far has had all new headliner, side panels, carpet, and custom stitched seats by Crash Customs finished. Working on the stereo and custom door panels at the moment. But definitely a big change since when I acquired it from the original family.

Jay Johnston


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