Archive for October, 2011

A Halloween Delay…

Posted: October 31, 2011 in Uncategorized

There has not been much if any progress the last two weeks as we have been under a Halloween Delay here at our home. Every year I have an extensive display that I put up on my property… the overall theme being “Skeleton Graveyard”. Our home has become a bit of a local draw in fact this year we had 435 Trick-or-Treaters hit our doorstep. Four years ago I began the “Scare Hunger Away Food Drive” to benefit our local food bank and this year was another great success! Thank  you to all who contributed!


Click on the Gallery Tab to see more photos of Halloween Night and how I put My First Mistake to good use…


Body Cart Construction

Posted: October 17, 2011 in Projects

I needed to find a creative solution to a limited amount of space in the home garage in order to do a complete frame off restoration.  We’re fortunate to have a three car garage but one committment I made to my bride was that her car would not get kicked out of the garage during this project.

What complicates issues further is the fact that I have two 66 Bugs sitting in my garage due to “My First Mistake”.  Since the first car will be a donor I want to keep it in the best shape I can and with the fact we are heading into our rainy season here in the Pacific Northwest (or what everyone else calls Fall, Winter, Spring and most of Summer) storing it outside is not ideal.

I found various cart designs that would be more than adequate if I had two stalls in my garage to dedicate full time to just this one car but I don’t. I was fortunate to stumble across two seperate designs on line by other home restorers that had characteristics that met some of my needs, neither fit all the criteria but they did inspire me.

Ultimately, it had to be affordable to build as we are on a budget, I need the body at a reasonable height once loaded on the cart for working on it, once resting on the cart the heater channels needed to be fully exposed, it had to be mobile and it needed to be able to roll over the rolling frame for storage. I decided on a design made with 4″x4″ lumber, metal brackets and wheel casters.

I started with [4] – 8′ – 4″x4″ posts, [1] –  6′ – 4″x4″ post, [16] – L shaped support brackets, [8] – flat metal plates, [1] – 36″ long 1″ dowel cut into 3 1/2″ lengths, [4] – 5″ wheel casters, [16] – 1 3/4″ lag bolts and a box of 1 1/4″ wood screws.


I left two of my 8′ lengths as they were and cut two others down to 6′ lengths. I then cut the remaining post so that I had a total of four 24″ lengths. Then using a flat bottom bit I drilled one inch holes at 1 3/4″ depths at the ends of each cut lumber pieces as shown below. I then drove the dowels into the ends of my 8′ lengths.


With a little glue in place I then hammered the 24″ lengths in an upright position. After checking the vertical alignment and verifying the angle was square I then mounted the L shape brackets using the 1 1/4″ wood screws.


Once the brackets were mounted I then placed the flat metal plate on the reverse side of the joint for added support. The 6′ cross supports were then put in place utilzing the same method. Four wheel casters then finished off the construction of the cart.


Käfer – Why?

Posted: October 10, 2011 in Background

I’ve been asked a number of times why käfer in the name of the blog?

The simple explanation is that “käfer” is German for Beetle. I discovered this while doing research for the restoration of this car. I liked the concept of using the German translation when referring to the vehicle. In addition, there are a number of other sites on the internet that use Beetle or Bug in their title so it was an effort to seperate my site from others. Finally, although my primary heritage is Irish what’s not Irish is all German so I guess it was just a tip of the hat to that part of the family.

A Solid Foundation

Posted: October 3, 2011 in Uncategorized

After getting some good advice from someone I trust I set out to find a car that would serve as a better foundation for the restoration project. I looked through ads that covered the better part of the West Coast and was fortunate to find a prospect not far from where I live. I took a trip out to take a look at it with a better understanding of what to be looking for to ensure that I had a car worth working on.

What I saw I liked but was still rattled by my first mistake. My reliable resource had made it clear that he was willing to look at anything I stumbled upon and bring his years of experience to the task. I schedule a time for us to meet up and take a look at the car… after careful review I got the thumbs up, this is going to be the project car.