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    1. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      03-18-2010 10:30 PM #76
      Quote, originally posted by monkeytronic »
      Just for grins, how much work would be involved to convert a 2WD Vanagon with pristine sheetmetal into a Synchro? I take it that the fuel tank, fuel filler, and probably even the spare tire all must get moved to make room for the front axle and prop shaft, would the suspension attachment points be any different?
      I'm wondering because the 'rents still own an '86 Vanagon GL that's been in the family since like '89 and has never ventured out of the north Texas area the entire time and as a result is surprisingly rust free and would probably make for an interesting project.

      it's not bolt up, but people do do it regularly (just like people convert the hardtops to poptops). There is some welding involved for the suspension and subframes, but alot of the mount points exist on the 2wd vans as well. One of the biggest things is moving the fuel tank and filler neck (right behind the front wheels in a 2wd, and above the transmission in a syncro). The spare tire doesn't move.
      The awd system swap is much more difficult and AFAIK never really been done. The issue is it's a very unique configuration (ie rear longitudinal engine with a rear-transaxle). Because the engine and the transaxle have to be bolted together and fit in a relatively specific place, if gets difficult. Even something like an audi b5 seutp, which has a majority of the engine in front of the rear axle would put the engine in a place occupied by the syncro fuel tank. You could do it, but you would end up hacking apart the entire van (the transmission output still turns the "wrong" way as well).
      The closest thing is probably a 911 c4 setup, but even that is going to require cutting. A full subaru setup would also be pretty close, but still spin the wrong way.
      Dave

    2. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      03-19-2010 04:42 PM #77
      floor is all patched. I was getting pretty pissed off by the end of it.

      Front cabin is ready to be put back together tomorrow (seats and carpet and such).
      Wheel well tops (inside the car) and seatbelt mounts are done and the seatbelts ready to go back in.
      Picked up the piece of rear fender I needed today from the junkyard (as well as some hatch struts from a passat wagon for the A6) and the new rear corners should come in early next week. Hope to be using it again (I need it to do a dump run to get rid of all the trash this project has generated).
      Last edited by rs4-380; 05-26-2010 at 03:26 PM.
      Dave

    3. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      03-21-2010 05:20 PM #78
      worked on the van some this weekend, cut out the passenger side rear corner (as well as the shelf underneath). Water comes down the vents and just rusts out these shelves.

      and put the interior back together today. As i mentioned, I am not putting the middle seat back in, as I never use it. Put the same ratty carpets back in as I am not spending money on new ones. Removing the rear heater allowed me to fit all my tools, spares, and gear under the rear bench, which is nice, because they were floating around the interior before.


      Last edited by rs4-380; 05-26-2010 at 03:25 PM.
      Dave

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      03-22-2010 12:55 PM #79
      Must be nice to drive it now that you know you don't have all of that rust lurking underneath the carpets and undercarriage...
      Vanagons suffer from seam rust out here, but I rarely see one with rust in the other areas yours had it.

    5. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      03-22-2010 08:15 PM #80
      Quote, originally posted by Numbersix »
      Must be nice to drive it now that you know you don't have all of that rust lurking underneath the carpets and undercarriage...
      Vanagons suffer from seam rust out here, but I rarely see one with rust in the other areas yours had it.

      I kind of guessed it was there, but it was definitely was one of those subjects I did not want to broach because I knew the answer. This is basically to keep it on the road for the next few years, although I do feel better about the seatbelts.
      it's definitely been used. I know one previous owner auto-x'd it, and the guy I bought it from used it as a work van for his construction company.
      Dave

    6. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      03-26-2010 05:25 PM #81
      Van-
      for the rear corners the seam had rusted so much that I had to cut out some of the upper panel. This is the driver side, where I had to replace about half an inch. The panel the turns the corner and forms the shelf under the D pillar. On this side I replaced about 10 back towards the center of the car. This was done using flat sheet (ie not a replacement panel).

      and with the new rear corner

      it's tacked on the outside because this is all getting bedlined here and I am not even going to bother with seam sealer etc.

      and the passenger side. I had to come up the side less, as well as go back less for the shelf on this side.

      this also has the patch panel that I got from the junkyard for the lower rear of the back fender, and obviously some seam issues above it that I opened up.
      I am glad this part done. I pretty much swore the whole time I was doing it, I am feed up with sheet metal work. Have another seam to clean out and repaint on the passenger side, but I am hoping that doesn't turn out to bad.
      Last edited by rs4-380; 05-26-2010 at 03:24 PM.
      Dave

    7. Senior Member Chris16vRocco's Avatar
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      03-26-2010 07:57 PM #82
      Quote, originally posted by rs4-380 »
      it's definitely been used. I know one previous owner auto-x'd it..

      What?!?! Who autocrosses a Vanagon? Or any van for that matter?
      Nil Satis Nisi Optimum

    8. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      03-26-2010 10:26 PM #83
      Quote, originally posted by Chris16vRocco »
      What?!?! Who autocrosses a Vanagon? Or any van for that matter?

      i personally have winter autocrossed it (think autocross course in a plowed field). It was a whole lot of fun. Not sure that I would ever do it on pavement, but either way, it's something unique and definitely gets people doing double takes.

      Dave

    9. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      03-27-2010 05:08 PM #84
      Todays work involved a C6 A6 4.2 s-line. The car had MMI, but not AMI (Audi music interface) or nav. AMI is really awesome in terms of ipod/mp3 integration. Full song titles, playlists et all show up on the MMI screen and you have full control via the MMI controls. The owner has just bought the car used, and was planning on driving it alot, so to them, AMI was worth the 800 bucks in Audi parts.
      In the C6, there is a 5-disc changer in the glovebox, the AMI unit can replace that, or sit next to it. The owner did not plan on ever using the CD changer once AMI was in, but I convinced them to keep it as it is the main way to update the MMI firmware if it is ever necessary.
      Because of that, the first step was dropping the glove box (5 screws).

      After spending a couple minutes figuring out how to open the glove box door when it is out of the car (the C6 has the often-complained about electronic glove box release button on the center console) I discovered that although the spot next to the cd changer was the correct size, it was going to need some alterations for depth. A dremel made short work of that.

      The cables from audi are straightforward, a new y-d out power connector, and a fiber optic cable that requires "splicing" into the existing cable. In reality the splicing is just shuffling some pins in the existing connector but seeing as it is fiber line, you do have to be careful not to crimp or bend anything.

      All reinstalled and set to go. Car didn't need any software updates or anything.

      The owner also requested a hardwire setup for their V1, so I mimicked what I did with my S5.
      Find an unused fuse spot that has an ignition switched input terminal (I think this was air suspension). On the recent Audis, it seems if the component is not there, the output terminal is not installed, so no worry there. Anyway, I just inserted a male spade connector where the fuse would go. I got ground from the grounding stud behind the panel. The V1 hardwire connector block fits perfectly in the unused third fuse block location and allows easy access to remove the power cord going to the unit if necessary.

      The following pictures were taken after the install was done, and don't show much, but that is kind of the point with the wire routing.
      wire exits the fusebox underneath the inner door trim, and then climbs up between the a-pillar trim and the weatherstriping.

      crosses the a pillar at the top of the a pillar trim...

      runs under the headliner<

      and then drops down in the OEM mirror/sensor wire cover

      I'll be honest, the design of the 4 door C6's doesn't do much for me, but if you could get this engine in a wagon (which does alot for me design wise), I would definitely be looking for a used one 2 or 3 years down the road.
      And something I found interesting about the C6's that I didn't notice until I popped the hood. The fenders actually compose a good amount of the "hood" area. The hood itself is much narrower due to the wrap over of the fenders.
      Last edited by rs4-380; 05-26-2010 at 03:22 PM.
      Dave

    10. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      03-28-2010 04:19 PM #85
      Van-
      Got the rear quarter on the driver side bedlined and the passenger side prepped, but there is some seam work needed on that side before I finish it. It wasn't nice enough to roll the van out to see how it looks so no pictures, but I can see the end.
      Also got the rear bumper off (something I was not necessarily expecting to be easy). I am not worried about the rust here as it's not structural or really visible when the bumper is on, so I'll seal it up to keep it from spreading and then bedline from the body line down.
      Last edited by rs4-380; 05-26-2010 at 03:18 PM.
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    11. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      04-02-2010 09:52 PM #86
      the owner of that focus called yesterday from a parking lot and said the car was "making noise and loose".
      ok.
      went to check it out and there was a racket in from one of the rear wheels and the brake pedal was all over the place. Car was fine to drive as long as the brakes were use sparingly so I dropped it off last night and got to work this morning. While I was at it I had the snow tires changed over.
      Car has rear drums (which I hate, they may be simple, but they are a pain in the ass compared to discs, which is the reason I took them off both the rabbit and van as soon as I could). The focus doesn't have a spindle per se like a VW does for drums. There is a sealed bearing that is pressed into the drum, then the spindle presses into the bearing, and the spindle (with drum and all) is them bolted to the suspension upright from the back, also securing the backing plate. Problem is for one of the bolts it's very tight in there, after screwing around with it for awhile, I finally undid the upper link, which gave me enough room to get it off. On the driver side (where the racket was coming from), i snapped one of the bolts, but as soon as I took the drum off I saw the problem, the friction material had broken free from the lining (on both shoes) even though there was a decent amount of friction material left. Everything inside looked ok, so I was planning on just replacing the shoes and hardware. The snapped bolt proved to be a real pain in the ass though. After drilling it and snapping an easy out off in it, snapping a couple drill bits trying to drill the easy out, heating it, etc etc, I finally removed one of the studs to knock the easy out from the back, drilled it out fully and retapped it. All in all though this took about 4 hours, and all kinds of swearing and frustration (hence why no pictures). I also fought with getting the first drum back on because one of the adjusters was not fully engaged, and I couldn't get the shoes compressed enough. At that point, I was so pissed off I was just making stupid mistakes, as soon as I looked at the other side (which still had the old stuff on it) I realized the problem and corrected it. So in all, the first side took about 6 hours. The second side took about 30 minutes.
      Looking at the fronts, the inner pads on both sides were worn down to the backing plates, so I also replaced those as well as the rotors. Being disc brakes and not total rust buckets, those took about 10 minutes a side (that is why I prefer discs). Had the tires switched over while I was working, and got those back on and took it for a drive to bed things in. All in all the owner got pretty much a full brake job for about 130 bucks in parts.
      Been driving the S5 since it's been nice the last couple days. still enjoy it.
      Dave

    12. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      04-03-2010 06:13 PM #87
      S5-
      picked up a filler plate for the s5. I wasn't that bothered with running a front plate, but it does look better without it.

      and because I've played the no-front-plate game before on my old mkiv and lost (I actually won several times until an officer pulled me over a second time), I wanted to be able to have one when I wanted. At some point I saw these hideaway holders that swift motorsports had, so I picked one up. Install was pretty easy as the S5 has a perfect place for it that doesn't put it underneath the belly pan were it will get destroyed if you hit something. I attached the front into the bar below the grille, and just bent a strap for the back that ties into the radiator frame. Also had to dremel the front undertray a bit as it is ridged, but the unit does not stick down below it. Good thing is it is easily reversible, the lower center bar I removed surprisingly just screws in, so I can always put it back.
      Right now its wired to constant 12v, so I want to fix that (wire it to something ignition switched) as well as seal up the undertray, and figure out some hardwired solution to get rid of the cheesy fob-remote (I had hoped that homelink would emulate the remote but no luck).
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0iGcav9OSHc


      Modified by rs4-380 at 6:22 PM 4-3-2010
      Last edited by rs4-380; 05-26-2010 at 03:16 PM.
      Dave

    13. Member dieselraver's Avatar
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      04-03-2010 06:39 PM #88
      Quote, originally posted by rs4-380 &raquo;
      the owner of that focus called yesterday from a parking lot and said the car was "making noise and loose".
      ok.
      went to check it out and there was a racket in from one of the rear wheels and the brake pedal was all over the place. Car was fine to drive as long as the brakes were use sparingly so I dropped it off last night and got to work this morning. While I was at it I had the snow tires changed over.
      Car has rear drums (which I hate, they may be simple, but they are a pain in the ass compared to discs, which is the reason I took them off both the rabbit and van as soon as I could). The focus doesn't have a spindle per se like a VW does for drums. There is a sealed bearing that is pressed into the drum, then the spindle presses into the bearing, and the spindle (with drum and all) is them bolted to the suspension upright from the back, also securing the backing plate. Problem is for one of the bolts it's very tight in there, after screwing around with it for awhile, I finally undid the upper link, which gave me enough room to get it off. On the driver side (where the racket was coming from), i snapped one of the bolts, but as soon as I took the drum off I saw the problem, the friction material had broken free from the lining (on both shoes) even though there was a decent amount of friction material left. Everything inside looked ok, so I was planning on just replacing the shoes and hardware. The snapped bolt proved to be a real pain in the ass though. After drilling it and snapping an easy out off in it, snapping a couple drill bits trying to drill the easy out, heating it, etc etc, I finally removed one of the studs to knock the easy out from the back, drilled it out fully and retapped it. All in all though this took about 4 hours, and all kinds of swearing and frustration (hence why no pictures). I also fought with getting the first drum back on because one of the adjusters was not fully engaged, and I couldn't get the shoes compressed enough. At that point, I was so pissed off I was just making stupid mistakes, as soon as I looked at the other side (which still had the old stuff on it) I realized the problem and corrected it. So in all, the first side took about 6 hours. The second side took about 30 minutes.
      Looking at the fronts, the inner pads on both sides were worn down to the backing plates, so I also replaced those as well as the rotors. Being disc brakes and not total rust buckets, those took about 10 minutes a side (that is why I prefer discs). Had the tires switched over while I was working, and got those back on and took it for a drive to bed things in. All in all the owner got pretty much a full brake job for about 130 bucks in parts.
      Been driving the S5 since it's been nice the last couple days. still enjoy it.


      lol [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG] thank god you didn't take a sawz-all to it! you might end up on the honda-tech site.
      Looking for a new or used Volkswagen in NY/NJ/CT? PM me! I offer bottom line pricing! GTI Monster Mats & Gorilla Liner for Sale! http://forums.vwvortex.com/showthrea...la-Trunk-Liner

    14. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      04-05-2010 10:17 AM #89
      Quote, originally posted by dieselraver &raquo;

      lol [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG] thank god you didn't take a sawz-all to it! you might end up on the honda-tech site.

      I have taken a sawz-all to an upper control arm bolt/bushing on the syncro before.
      Dave

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      04-10-2010 06:58 PM #90
      S5-
      Hardwired the hide-a-plate. I basically just cut out the rf transmitter box and wired the motor directly to a momentary DPDT switch. I am sure the remote function contributed to about half the price of the thing, but key chains/fobs are not my thing, and I have no need to do it from outside of the car anyway. I put the switch in the plastic above the drivers footwell so it stays out of the way but still is accessible. I may cut down the switch handle a bit.

      Hardest part was getting a wire from the interior into the engine bay. Couldn't really figure out how the stock harness ran as inside there is somewhat of a "false" firewall made out of some rubberized carboardish material and I couldn't get behind that. I ended up taking the ecu cover off in the raintray, and to my surprise I found out the ecu actually slides in through a hole in the firewall and sits half in the car and half in the raintray (you can see it here in the dark area to the right of the relays) Below this however was a great place to run wires.

      Ran the wires out through the stock harness boot (big pain), wrapped them up and ran to the unit in the front of the car.

      for switched 12v I tapped into the wire I had already run to the fusebox for the V1 install.

      Also, the a6 owner was back with a complaint about a "banging/knocking noise from the left rear". They thought it may be something loose with the suspension, after driving the car and poking around, I determined it to be a loose jack hold-down attributed to mis-installation of the jack in the holder. That was an easy one.
      Last edited by rs4-380; 05-26-2010 at 03:14 PM.
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    16. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      04-10-2010 07:03 PM #91
      van-
      rear is rust bulleted and bedlined, also rust bulleted the top of the sheet metal I added below the taillights (that formed part of the sides above the rear corners).

      The passenger side is also bedlined and done other then two seams that I am still working on.
      Bad picture, but this is what it is coming out like-
      Last edited by rs4-380; 05-26-2010 at 03:08 PM.
      Dave

    17. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      04-11-2010 08:40 PM #92
      did some little stuff today on the van, got the accelerator pedal back on, the accelerator cable junction cover back on, the hitch cleaned up and ready for paint, and the second coat of rust bullet under the tails.
      Dave

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      04-12-2010 12:20 AM #93
      Nice updates. I've actually learned a lot just by reading through your fixes and repairs. Thanks. Do you do auto tech work for a living or just a side job? [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]
      4/29/17: Dear Diary, Today I got Nater'd...

    19. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      04-12-2010 11:30 AM #94
      Quote, originally posted by Vee-Dubber-GLI &raquo;
      Nice updates. I've actually learned a lot just by reading through your fixes and repairs. Thanks. Do you do auto tech work for a living or just a side job? [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]

      It's a hobby. I don''t really make any money off it, the cars that aren't mine are mostly friends and family and usually I just charge them for parts. Everytime I try to make some money off of it I end up feeling guilty and backing down. I enjoy it and it's a great way to learn. That being said I do not think general automotive repair is something I would want to do full time.
      Dave

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      04-12-2010 04:08 PM #95
      I've heard the same from the tech at the dealership I worked at; if you're a car guy, it sucks having your passion as your job and then going home to do the same thing. Either way, keep up on the updates, it's a nice learning experience for me. [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG] [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]
      4/29/17: Dear Diary, Today I got Nater'd...

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      04-12-2010 08:52 PM #96
      I spend all day in front of a computer, so it's nice to get out and create (break/beat/destroy) things with your hands.
      Dave

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      04-12-2010 09:04 PM #97
      the "hide-a-plate" thing alone would make you a fortune in Virginia if you mass produced it. Just saying
      |:.Last.FM.:|Project C.A.R.S.|:.sputnikmusic.:|

      NYdubber everywhere else.

    23. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      04-18-2010 05:11 PM #98
      forgetting my camera alot these days.
      Been working on random small thing. Got the tailights back in the can with new stainless hardware for them as well as the sidemarkers. Got a new mount for the (subaru) charcoal canister painted (it's just sheet metal) and secured back under the read passenger side fender. Found out I had cut through some of the wires to the drivers tailight, so that came out and the wires spliced back together. Also resoldered on the contact for my rear fog light retrofit, and since it looked like the bulb was melting the plastic a little (it's a bright bulb) I also made a heat shield out of some sheet metal that will sit above the bulb and protect the plastic. It's held in place by another piece of sheet bent into a small clip.
      With all that done I loaded up the van and made a dump run. Was nice to be driving it again. I don't know if I just wasn't used to it because I hadn't been driving it or what, but it got a lot of looks/smiles during the short trip.
      Will probably get the rabbit out in the next couple weeks, and in anticipation, dealt with something I have been ignoring for awhile. The gas tank vent hose that ties into a barb on the filler next was been disconnected because the barb rusted off the filler neck. I didn't want to go through draining the tank and pulling the filler, so I just cleaned up the area, jb welded a hose bard to the neck and got the vent hose connected back up. It will work fine for the ~250 miles/year I drive that car.
      It's was cold this past week and the S5 developed a rattle in the dome light area. I need to pull that and look at it sooner or later.
      Also picked up some new tools (it's just as good as new car parts) to try and make some things easier on myself. Basically ergonomic improvements to things I use all the time.
      I use the "regular" sears combination wrenches and ratchets, and find they do put alot of stress on wrists and especially my hands because their handles are not the best.
      I use the 3/8 ratchet the most, so picked one of these up

      and also picked up a set of these "Cross force" wrenches in hopes that the greater surface area where pressure is applied (and longer length) would work better for me.

      and finally, after years or having (but not really using) nothing but a basic cheapo impact gun that wouldn't usually even break loose lug nuts, I spent some money on one that should be able to get the job done, and make me use hand tools for those stubborn bolts less (which means less impact on my wrists). Can't find it online, but it was a "Craftsman Professional" with 700+lb ft and the direction/speed dial selector on the finger trigger.
      Dave

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      04-24-2010 07:17 PM #99
      s5 pictures





      Last edited by rs4-380; 07-22-2010 at 04:06 PM.
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      04-24-2010 07:20 PM #100
      Van
      dealing with the last seam rust spot under the passenger side b pillar. It's been "dealt with" several times before but never dealt with from the back, so it keeps coming back.

      hard to tell here, but these are some of the spots where I tediously removed the seam sealer to seal up the rust. Rust makes the seam sealer crack, which just lets more water in and more rust.


      Last edited by rs4-380; 05-26-2010 at 03:05 PM.
      Dave

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