…because you never know!”, the Little Prince said and this Samba project,
my dear VW-friends,
is proofing that Saint-Exupéry was right and still is. Whoever dumped the Samba in 1961, he wouldn´t ever have thought that this bus will survive him. And –be honest- did you believe in May 2017 when we presented the remains of the Samba to the public that this bus will drive again just 12 months later? See…. you never know!
Same question today. Have a look on the remains of the Samba´s right door. Would you clean this extinct volcano? Come on, you would trash this poor piece of rotten metal after removing the inner door handle, wouldn´t you? I don´t blame you, I would do the same if it wasn´t the (at least) second oldest surviving Samba. But it is this certain piece of VW-history and it deserves to save every single surviving piece, no matter how “dead” it is.
for those of you who are not familiar with the inner structure of a Barndoor bus…. this is the inner piece of the right door after removing the door panel.
Same piece, seen from the other side…..
and we got something left of the outer skin as well….
A little bit of the window frame
and that was a door hinge. Once.
And now we get started! No kidding. We want to restore this door. Sure, it would be easier to buy a new one from Columbia, but that´s not the way of our project. I don´t want to bore the long time follower of the blog and repeat again the philosophy of the reconstruction. In case you wonder why we do it this way, just read some of the older posts….
OK, ready to see another little miracle? We begin with worst pieces, the hinges. It was Philipp who had the idea to drop them into a caustic soda tub to remove the rust. Doesn´t this look like Frankenstein´s kitchen?
And here´s the result:
Believe it or not, the hinge is even moveable again!
And now, Ladies and gentlemen, spot on to the breathtaking body work of Mr. Mark Spicer. There are no words needed, the pictures are just impressing enough and don´t need an explanation:
Just to avoid a misunderstanding: the new sections around the old surviving piece are 100% hand-crafted! Unbelievable, isn´t it?
The inner door release mechanism. Stuck since decades, but back to live again in 2018!
That´s the way I want this Bus: showing honestly what we reconstructed and what´s still original material! You can clearly see it, can´t you?
We have even found more parts of the right door surviving! Luckily the Samba was hidden in a very lonely place of the Eifel´s nature, nobody seemed to have touched it since it was dumped. No vandalism, no smashed windows! All windows of the bus survived beside the rear one and one of the Plexiglas corners. All of surviving ones are still the very original ones, showing the old, simple “SEKURIT” script!
Sure Mark will fit in the windows into the door and I am sure he will also fit in the outer skin as well. Maybe he will find also some original sealing wax red color under the ugly ivory respray, just the same way he did with the long side panel…. Stay tuned and you´ll see!
Best regards from Bonn
just done! 🙂
You inspire all VW aficionados regardless of where they are on this planet. I look forward to each of your posts. They encourage me to continue, onward and upwards.
It’s such a great story.
It has enough potential to write a book about it. In the way of the resurrection of the VW prototype 38/06 by Clauspeter Becker.
HEEL is not that far away 😉
There will be a book for sure! We are already collecting pictures and information of anything related to the prototype stage of the Samba in general to accompany the story of this certain Samba. But it´s a tricky task, cause source location of this toppic is kind of poor so far. The archives of the Wolfsburg factory haven´t got anything and contemporary witnesses are all dead by now. Also the Fleischhauer group hadn´t got anything, they trashed their huge archive including a big picture collection years ago. But I found some remains in private hands. Stay tuned, I will publish it here in the blog as soon as I got some more material to present….