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 My '59 Sled Activities

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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: My '59 Sled Activities   5/8/2010, 6:52 pm

I plan to do some major work on this VW next spring or so. For now, I am getting to know the bug and mechanical stuff in general. Last week, I changed the oil, tranny fluid, spark plugs and adjusted the valves. Oh, and I did some other little tweaks to... I adjusted the steering because it was way too tight, and I fixed the hood latch. This week, I swapped out a door handle on the driver side. I didn't have the key to the old one and it was looking rather ratty anyway, so I changed it. It was a snap.

I took the kids for a ride and we went to fischer buggies. I started yapping about the engine with Tony and before you know it I had some new parts. After finishing our little tour of fischer and also going for ice cream with the kids, I went home and installed the new goodies... Here are some pics...

Before the trip...
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New Handle...
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Engine with Old Filter
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Engine with New Filter
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Anyway, just having fun with it...
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MadMike
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/8/2010, 7:11 pm

Looking GOOD... What major work are you wanting to do to it?
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/8/2010, 7:51 pm

I want to do the standard body off stuff... heater channels and floor pans. It needs new rubber all around and the headliner needs to be replaced (though I have that new in a box right now.)

I also want to work on the engine more and replace the tranny...

I dunno... I am starting a wish list...
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Tom62
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/8/2010, 9:05 pm

looks good but if you didn't do it plug the hole in the rear tin where the old pre-heat pipe to the air cleaner went. That will help keep engine temps down Very Happy
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/8/2010, 9:25 pm

lol... yeah, Tony told me to get a plug for that rascal. I will be doing that tomorrow. Not really sure what the heck I need to be looking/asking for when I go to the shop for that. Engine plug? What do you call that thingy?
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Hellaslow
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/8/2010, 10:40 pm

looking good
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muddobber
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/9/2010, 10:09 am

that is a good looking ride. looking for help or answers the support is here. good luck!
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Tom62
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/9/2010, 6:51 pm

I just take a small piece of sheet metal and pop rivet it.
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/13/2010, 12:26 pm

I finally found a piece to fit in that hole. It was an expanding freeze plug by expand-tite. I got the size that was 1 7/8ths to 21/4. It fit in real nice and doesn't look too bad. It was a bugger finding a place with the right size though.

Now I got brake issues. It pulls big time to the left when I apply the brakes. I watched the bugme vids and he stated that the rubber brake lines can cause that issue. I am going to look at those, and the brakes in general today.

The steering is a bit wonky too. I think I have what is called 'bump steer'. When I hit a bump it decides it wants to veer of, slightly, in a random direction. On samba it sounds like some shims will resolve that issue, but in any case, when I get under the front I will take a look at that. A PO had tightened up the steering real tight (maybe to fix that) but I loosened it up and it is better, but still needs something.

In any case, I will look at that stuff when I lift it up for the brake stuff... Any advice or pointers would be cool though Smile
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IPunchBack
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/13/2010, 5:28 pm

Can't really help with that myself, but you have a nice ride. Good luck. I am sure you will get it worked out.
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the-jerm
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/13/2010, 6:10 pm

jstgtpaid wrote:

Now I got brake issues. It pulls big time to the left when I apply the brakes. I watched the bugme vids and he stated that the rubber brake lines can cause that issue. I am going to look at those, and the brakes in general today.


Brakes might just need to be adjusted. I would try that first.

jstgtpaid wrote:

The steering is a bit wonky too. I think I have what is called 'bump steer'. When I hit a bump it decides it wants to veer of, slightly, in a random direction. On samba it sounds like some shims will resolve that issue, but in any case, when I get under the front I will take a look at that. A PO had tightened up the steering real tight (maybe to fix that) but I loosened it up and it is better, but still needs something.

Your car didn't come with a steering dampener. One can be added to solve that problem. Mine didn't have one when I purchased it. I installed one. BIG DIFFERENCE!
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/14/2010, 12:47 am

I will have to look into that steering dampener...

But the brakes... Well that was a disaster. I figured that since it was pulling to the left, that the right brakes had a problem. I was hoping that it was a clogged brake line, but it turns out it was much worse.

The right brakes were totally caked in grease, possibly brake fluid. The cyclinder was a mess and the adjusters were filthy and sticky. I took the whole thing apart and cleaned up the insides. I will have to look at replacing the brakes and such tomorrow.

The left side was much better. However, the brake cylinder on that side came apart as I took it out. Just as well, though. After the right side cyclinder destroyed the brakes, I think I would have replaced the left side anyway.

The drums need to be turned (in my non-expert opinion). Plus I don't like the wearing and pits on some of the bearing parts. I don't know the name of those silly parts, but I remember in the bugme vids he stated to replace the whole bearing package if it was pitted and groved.

In any case, I will head to the shop tomorrow and try to get those parts. I don't know if I need to replace the drum that got oily? Or will that be cleaned up when I have 'em turned. Or do folks turn drums anymore?

On the bright side, I thoroughly enjoyed myself doing the work. While I had the wheel off I took the opportunity to lube the front end, which looked like it needed it. I just enjoyed the whole process actually. It was very relaxing. However, I don't think I will make this first Friday at Citrus. I will have to come next week. Getting the brakes in order is important...

Here are some pics...
left brake parts
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Right oily drum
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Oil slick brake shoe + wheel cylinder
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should have taken a before picture. This was as clean as I could get it, initially.
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You know... It looks like someone painted the tie rods (I hope that is what you call those rascals...)

Ohh, I almost forgot. The speedo cable was missing the e-clip. I have no idea how it was working. I guess that part isn't required??? In any case, I picked up some clips so one should fit...
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Dave
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/14/2010, 12:38 pm

brake fluid usually doesn't get black and greasy like that in my experience. I'm guessing the oil seal for the wheel bearings was bad and flinging wheel bearing grease all around. It definitely will affect braking.

I think you're doing it the right way though, just replace all of the parts at once, so the new parts don't get ruined by leaking old parts. This should last a long time if you do the job right the first time.

That car is pretty low, so your bump steer may be caused by the angle the tie rods sit at. With the car lowered the tie rods angle up from the steering box to the spindle. Since the rods are drastically different lengths, this magnifies the issue. There is a kit that has some bushings. You drill out the tie rod hole in the spindle, put the bushing in, and put the tie rods in upside down. Its called a tie rod flip kit. It is designed to fix bump steer on lowered cars. It's about $20.
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/14/2010, 1:17 pm

I am gonna go home early today and try to get those brakes in order. I really want to make the DQ thing today. If I do, I will pick your brain mercilessly about all that steering stuff... Wink
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Dave
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/14/2010, 1:19 pm

Yeah, I love to talk, especially about VW's! If you decide to go, give me a call at 813-810-3673 so we'll know to look for you.
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the-jerm
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/14/2010, 5:34 pm

Another thought came to mind, do you have caster shims installed?

Good info Dave! I didn't know those existed.
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/14/2010, 8:54 pm

I am stuck on the brakes!

You can see the pictures above where the old inner race was still on the spindle when I took the picture. I got it off, but it was a bear on both sides.

The problem that I am having is that the new bearings don't want to go on. They get stuck about 3/4 of an inch out. see pic below...

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I only took that picture for documentation purposes to show where it gets stuck. Any ideas why it is so damn hard to get on? In the bugme video it appears like Mr. Higgens just slides on the drum and screws it on. He didn't have to pound that damn thing back on...

A couple of things that I have checked. The bearings are in the right place. The inner ones are bigger than the outer. I also checked both spindles and they both stop at the same spot.

I don't know what the heck to try next... Any ideas?
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the-jerm
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/14/2010, 11:49 pm

I had a problem like this on mine. I found that the original STUCK bearing, when finally removed, left a "high spot" on the spindle. I'm not sure if what I did was entirely correct but after a little "massaging" with a piece of fine grit sand paper, that new one slid on.
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baja69
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/15/2010, 12:04 am

You may want to double check for the correct bearings.
The spindles might not be original to the car.
The spindle diameter is different for some years, but I don't know which years.
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Dave
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/15/2010, 8:50 am

The only different bearings I'm aware of are 68-newer. That would be BJ though, and I'm guessing his 59 still has link pin?
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/15/2010, 10:58 am

LOL... Yeah, I am not sure... I am going to take a bunch of pictures of it and head back to fishers' to make sure I got the right parts.

While I was replacing the brake rubber lines the dry rotted fuel like broke. That was fun. I had to fill up all my gas tanks, lawn mower, etc. LOL, damn thing broke way up right underneath the metal pipe under the gas tank.

Now that the gas tank is empty, who knows, I may just decide to take it out and replace the brake cylinder while I am at it.

I will have to show you pics of the old 'patched' brake lines. sigh. Both look like they were patched. One with a rubber hose that looks like electrical shrink hose (if you know what I mean) and the other looks like tape.

Anyway, I am off to fishers... I will keep ya posted. Rolling Eyes
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the-jerm
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/15/2010, 12:59 pm

Aahhhhh, the joys of someone elses crappy work. It's amazing what you can find. Laughing

Are you going with a dual circuit master cylinder?
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/15/2010, 1:39 pm

I was thinking about the dual circuit master, but in the end I opted to just go with the old version. I don't know what hoses and such I would need to get her back on the road with the dual circuit.

Eventually, I want to go to disc brakes, so I will switch that to a dual then (maybe).

In any case, I got the parts; new fuel line, fuel filter, new inner bearing (just in case), and a master brake cylinder. I am going to pop the now empty gas tank off and replace that master cylinder while I am at it.

The folks at fisher also recommended taking a little emery cloth to the spindle. So, even though I am not thrilled with that idea, I will give it a try.

If anyone is bored and wants to turn some wrenches w/me. Give me a jingle... 813.434.0594. I'll be in the garage Very Happy


Last edited by jstgtpaid on 5/16/2010, 9:33 am; edited 1 time in total
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PistonPete123
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/15/2010, 7:35 pm

Emery cloth to the spindle???? that doesn't sound like a good idea, maybe a soft scotch pad would be better. If you can't get the bearing on, put it in the freezer for a couple hours, it will shrink and go on easyer. ball joints are the same way.
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/15/2010, 10:30 pm

Yeah, I didn't like the emery cloth idea either. BUT, I did it anyway. I got some really fine emery cloth and it still took a while to get it down where it would go on. I cleaned up the spindles big time after the cloth to ensure that nothing ended up in the bearings. The inner race was still snug, but at least it went on good.

The gas tank and fuel lines were a breeze; much easier than the brakes actually. I made sure the fuel filter clips were easy to get too, so when I change that rascal again it will be just as easy.

I put on the new Coil and she starts up like a dream now. It actually seems that the engine idle is higher now. Maybe that is just my imagination?

Also, when I bled the brakes, it didn't seem like I got any pressure in the back brakes. I would not be surprised if the rubber lines in the back are toast, and who knows, maybe the cylinders are too. I am a little too tired to tackle them now. Plus, all the good VW shops are closed tomorrow so I think I will just take a break... LOL, and I need to acquire a 36mm impact socket. I don't intend to break my back if my pneumatics will take care of it...

I bought break shoes and cylinders for the back already. I will probably just replace everything like I did in the front when I do 'em...

Having lots of fun though!
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the-jerm
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/16/2010, 11:14 am

I am assuming you want the 36mm for the axle nuts. Good luck. Depending on how long they have been on there, an impact may or may not work. What ever you do, DO NOT USE THE IMPACT TO PUT THEM BACK ON! They have a required torque and it is important you comply.

Ask me how I know Wink
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Dave
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/16/2010, 2:44 pm

I would recommend buying a "torque dude" from Fisher's (or online VW shops). It makes axle nuts and gland nuts a dream to remove and install. Best $70 I ever spent on a VW.
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/16/2010, 6:57 pm

LOL... I used my impact wrench on the 36mm nut. I was reminded of the hefty trash bag commercial... No not the hefty bag, the other, you know the 'wimpy wimpy wimpy'...

Anyway, I went to sears got a breaker bar, it was a snap.

Popped off the drum and there was like a half inch of dust in the drum. Amazing... The spindle is coated with grease that smells like tranny fluid. Since my tranny is leaking like a sive it doesn't surprise me to find yet another tranny leak. Thats okay though.

I will start making a list for the rear end breaks. Might as well get 'R done right.

She steers much better now, btw. I took my sled out to get the impact sockets and she steers much better. I can actually drive with one hand on the wheel instead of the normal two fisted white knuckle routine. When I am done with the brakes, I think I will take it in to get an alignment. Larry Olsen recommended a place...

Anyway... Things are improving. I will continue to add to the brake saga for those with interest and/or tips...
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/16/2010, 9:21 pm

**I am just going to clean up the drums for now. I will go hog wild again on next months vw budget.. lol **
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baja69
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/16/2010, 10:32 pm

If you need to replace the rear axle seals, I recommend replacing the spacers also.
Inspect the rear bearings also. (as best you can)
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/19/2010, 7:11 pm

Are replacing the shocks easy? It looks like it would be a simple job, just two bolts... Are there any gotcha's? Can I put the jack stands in the usual spots or does replacing the shocks require them to be placed somewhere special?

For the front I usually put my jack stands under the front beam. On the back I usually put the jack stands under the torsion bars (I hope that is what you call 'em)

Anyway, I was thinking it would be easy, just want to check...
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Dave
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/19/2010, 8:34 pm

On a link pin beam like yours, it should be very easy. The only thing you need to watch out for is the upper bolts. They thread into sleeves in the beam. Those sleeves can spin if the bolt is rusted and you really crank on it. So take your time, spray plenty of lube on the bolt ahead of time (I like to spray them, then drive the car some to really shake it in there), and you should be fine.

Are you interested in cruising to the Fred Howard Park event with us this saturday?
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/19/2010, 9:24 pm

That trip to Fred Howard Park sounds really cool... I think I will pack up the fam in the VW and head out there... I just want to get the brakes and such done first...Wink

I have Friday off and I may take tomorrow off too. So I should have plenty of time to do all the work that I want to get done...
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Dave
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/19/2010, 9:26 pm

OK, well let me know if you want to go, we're probably going to meet here in Odessa and make the cruise over together.
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/20/2010, 11:29 pm

After work, I got started on the back brakes. I am definitely gonna need new spacers. I hope that is a stock item. The ones in there are shot. I don't think the back brakes were working at all.

The right brakes were covered in tranny fluid. The seal looked fine, but the gasket around the casing looked like it disintegrated or was missing. I think that is where the leak was.

I can't get either bearing off. The left side feels real rough and the right side is just as bad. I borrowed a puller from a local parts store, but the puller arms were too thick to get into the bearings. I tried the Higgen's hammer and wrench method and that didn't work either.

As I suspected the rubber hoses were trashed. I cut the right side open to examine them posthumously, and there was only the tiniest opening in there. The metal break lines in back were rough too... One was rusted pretty good at the nut, so I might replace that one and see if I can clean out the other. Of course, they will probably be a nickel part so I will probably just buy new tomorrow. LOL...

The drum on the right side has a big grove in it. The left felt really smooth (probably never wore because of the tranny fluid all over it! LOL) I will see about getting them turned tomorrow too. The right will probably need it. I don't know about the left.

I was only able to get two shocks. Not sure if I want to put them on the front or back. I dunno. Maybe I will get lucky and find another pair of shocks tomorrow.

Ohh, and I got a horn too. Unfortunately, electrics are not my thing at all! So I may need some help/guidance on that one.

~Steven
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Dave
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/21/2010, 9:02 am

I dont mind helping with the horn, but swingaxle's and drum brakes aren't my thing. That's why I converted my rail buggy to IRS and disks, JUST so I wouldn't have to mess with those things HAHA
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/21/2010, 7:36 pm

I GIVE UP! I can't get the bearings out. I have done everything I could think of and nothing will get 'em out. It pains me not to take them out but I just can't do it. My arms are sore, I'm cranky and after two days of trying I surrender. LOL, I will have to pay someone to yank and replace those rascals.

Gonna put the rest of the brakes and stuff on now...
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TRIKERTROY
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/21/2010, 11:33 pm

Its been awhile since Iv messed swing axle bearings.. I remember there is a special puller we used when I was working at a VW dealership..

Since you dont have (and cant get ) that puller, I remember unbolting the axle tube from the tranny and useing a big hammer on the mount area to drive the bearing off... This is a backyard/last resort method.

Are your bearings bad? The axle seals are the biggest drawback of the swingaxle system..
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/22/2010, 2:59 am

I am not certain that the bearings are bad. I guess if they were real bad, I would know. It just a new bug (to me) and wanted to replace the basics. Plus, the tranny growls so I was not certain that it wasn't the bearings, so I wanted to play it safe.

In any case, I got all the stuff put back together. The breaks and rear shocks are on. She drives really nice, though I still have drifting issues and/or bump steer. I will get an alignment some time next week and see if anything comes up from that. Mr. Olson recommended an alignment place so I will check them out.

I need to get different shocks for the front. They have a large diameter piece on the bottom that is larger than the stock shocks I bought.

I wasn't too thrilled with the shock tower mount on the right side. It looks like the mount was welded on and it looks like a messy welding job. Maybe someone stripped the threads and had to repair it? Who knows.

In any case, I will probably exchange those front shocks and try to get a replacement for them.

Next task will be getting the horn operational and the brake lights fixed.
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baja69
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/22/2010, 11:46 pm

As far as the axle bearings go, unless they're bad, I wouldn't mess with them. The seals are aggravating enough. I thought about replacing mine when replacing the seals. After a lot of thought and cursing , I too gave up. I inspected them as best I could and they look to be fine. I've had no problems with them.
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Hellafast
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/23/2010, 1:41 am

Take your tranny to Jim Loftin 352-848-0462. He's honest and wont bullsh1t you.
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/23/2010, 9:20 am

I guess the shocks were the right type. It appears that the center piece of the shock failed to come off. I guess that will be pretty fun trying to get that rascal off.

I am going to start pricing out that tranny stuff, so I will give Jim a call... Thanks for the information.
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TRIKERTROY
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/23/2010, 10:44 am

To remove that shock bushing from the trailing arm, I lube it down with Blaster or WD40 and use a big pipe wrench.. Last resort would be to heat it up and use the pipe wrench.
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/25/2010, 5:57 pm

Hellafast wrote:
Take your tranny to Jim Loftin 352-848-0462. He's honest and wont bullsh1t you.

I spoke with Jim and he sounds like he is the one to do the job. Now I just gotta figure out how I am gonna get the engine and tranny out.

I took another look at the front shocks. The left shock looks cracked on the bottom and looks like the nut head was broken off. What the heck can I do with that rascal? Is that something I should take to a shop?


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Hellafast
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Location : Horizontally opposed.

PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/25/2010, 6:22 pm

Grind the rest of the bolt off. You should be able to get the shock off and have enough bolt to get a pipe wrench onto and back it out as well.
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jstgtpaid
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/26/2010, 1:43 pm

I haven't started this task yet, but when I started calling around for that bolt I was told that it was part of the lower torsion arm. I guess since that bolt is broke I need to replace the lower torsion arm?

Lower Torsion Arm
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Dave
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/26/2010, 2:07 pm

Well, it isn't a bolt, it's a stud that is pressed into the lower control arm. Is the nut FUBAR'd or is the stud screwed up too?

If anything, you could get the stud out, tap the hole, and use a bolt. I can help with that, but it would probably be easier to do it at my place since we can put it on the lift and use the torch. I could help you with it next week. (getting ready to leave town for the holiday weekend)
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/26/2010, 2:56 pm

ok... I won't mess with it for now then... I plan to yank the engine and tranny this weekend and get the tranny worked on.

Thanks for the offer, Dave. I can't imagine how cool it must be to have a lift. While we were looking for houses, there was one that had a detached garage with a lift. LOL, I thought about it but ohh well...
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/29/2010, 9:26 pm

Well, today I yanked the engine... I felt it was a rite of passage or something... Anyway, it's out. I plan to yank out the transmission tomorrow. I have no freaking idea how I am going to lug that rascal to the transmission guy, but I might have a better idea after I get it out.

I took a cursory look at the inside of the flywheel housing on the tranny (I hope that is what you call it.) It looks like there is some oil or something in there. Probably means a bad seal or something...

In any case, it was fun. Here are some pictures... Ohh, I made my own engine dolly from a cheap dolly at harbor freight... I got pics of that too... I just cut one of the boards. For $10, I got a nice engine dolly...


BEFORE
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Home-Made Engine Dolly
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AFTER
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Garbage in the flywheel housing
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PostSubject: Re: My '59 Sled Activities   5/31/2010, 12:24 am

Well, I got the transmission out. It was a bear. Much harder than the engine. I thought it would be a breeze since I had done most of the chores related to removing the tranny before.

However, this rascal had other plans. The mount to the chassis in the nose cone was different. It is almost as if someone welded on a mount and attached it to that. I will post pics of that mount some other time.

It also had additional mounting hardware that surrounded the frame forks at the rear and also circled the tranny near the front. Maybe they were concerned their mounting hardware would not be up to snuff? Heck I don't know. It was an absolute PIA to get that extra mounting hardware off. None of the nuts and bolts were metric, so I was struggling to get the right damn wrenches for the job. In addition, it was impossible to reach all the silly nuts and bolts for that extra mount.

The front mounts were a bugger. One bolt was simple enough to remove but the other bolt nut could not totally be removed because a piece of the tranny was in the way. I had to pull the tranny out a wee bit then finish removing the front nut.

The shifting coupler was totally trashed. I have no idea how it was shifting so easily considering the condition of the coupler.

Anyway, here are some pics. I plan to analyze the engine and tranny some other time. My wife tells me that I will be building a tortoise table tomorrow. LOL, actually that sounds like fun. Hopefully my kids will help!

Transmission Out
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My leak may have been coming from these holes?
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Ohh, I almost forgot. I got a bonus when I was looking at the engine... A free tool! LOL, its amazing what you find... I guess the tool must have dropped behind that fan shroud and their either forgot it or didn't want to retrieve it...
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ohh, and when I saw the tool, I noticed that snappy jimmy-rig wire job behind the fan shroud. I forget right now what that silly thing is for, but I am pretty sure it is oil related and it maybe temperature related. Heck I can't remember right now... One more thing to fix...
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