Sunday, August 21, 2016
Friday, July 29, 2016
After the 21 window project we featured sold for a jaw-dropping $25k, we had to mention this one that came to market yesterday. It is a 1965 21 window and although it is far from perfect, it does run. There is some rust, but it looks like a deal at $24k when compared the bus from the other day. It is located in Quebec, Canada and is listed for sale here on TheSamba.
While over at TheSamba promoting our new Sunken Samba t-shirt, I spotted this huge stash of 21 and 23-window Sambas! I’m not really into VW buses, but this sight took my breath away. These well-lite people haulers bring big money today and this guy has a ton of them. There are at least five tucked away in this garage and there are many more scattered around outside. Don’t plan on scoring a bargain project here though. This guy only sells them after he’s restored them and each bus sells for around six figures. Boy, I think I may have went into the wrong profession!
Checkout the Samba school bus! I hope they’re able to preserve the paint job on that one. It would be fun to learn if it really served as a kid hauler at some point. Having those big skylights to look out of sure would have made the daily journey to the school house more fun. Obviously, a lot of people have fun in one of these when they were younger because they are worth a lot more than you’d assume a slow and simple bus to be. How about you – do you have memories of basking under the sunlight in one of these?
Who needs one of those newfangled Teslas when you can get this electric Beetle? It has the classic look and is a lot cheaper! I’m not a big electric car fan, but I could get behind this one. I’ve seen a few of these conversions driving around and it does seem like a good use for a late seventies bug. This one is handsome and should make a fun and economical driver for someone. I’ll let the seller, Chris D, tell it in his words though. Keep reading to learn more about this high-voltage Volkswagen:
This car started out as a rust-free California car and then I installed an electric conversion kit purchased from e-volks. It’s kit #3, which means it’s 120 volt. Power is supplied by 10 deep cycle marine batteries, with another battery to power the accessories. There are two on-board chargers – one for the main pack and one for the accessory battery. The main charger is programmable, but I’ve never tried doing anything with it. The other charger is just a standard trickle charger. Both charge from the same plug, so you just plug it in to a regular household outlet and it’ll charge all the batteries overnight.
After I did the conversion, I had the car painted in a two-tone scheme that matches the convertible top, which was also new from the previous owner. I then put in a matching two-tone interior with new carpet.
The car feels quicker than it did with a gas engine up until about 40mph. No shifting is needed – you can start out in second gear and that will take it up to 40 or so. Top speed is probably around 60, but it really runs out of power by 50. I would not call it highway capable, but it’s great around town where it has no problem keeping up with traffic. I try to only drain the batteries down to 50% or less to keep them in top shape and that gives you around 25 miles of range. The current batteries have only about 100 miles on them, so I’m still being careful to use them gently until they’re broken in. The original pack died prematurely, probably because I ran them down to zero charge multiple times.
I’ve driven the Beetle around 7,000 miles with absolutely no issues. Keep in mind that I, a liberal arts major, built this myself in my garage so it’s not a professionally designed and engineered conversion. For instance, if you floor it for too long you can draw so many amps that a battery cable bracket might melt. I don’t know what to do about that, but I’ve never tried to figure it out because it’s rarely an issue for me.
That being said, it works great and it’s really fun to drive. Everyone from college kids to old homeless guys love this car! I’d like to sell this to an electric-car enthusiast who will understand its quirks and love it like I have. I’m only selling it because I spent the last year working out of State, and will be leaving again this fall. I dont want the Beetle to just sit in my garage. I realize there’s a million questions buyers might have, so feel free. I want whomever buys this to be fully aware of everything about it.
If you’re interested you can contact Chris here via email. The car is located in Boulder, Colorado and he would like to get $5,000. He has spent a lot more than that to build this car, so it might be a bargain for someone considering a similar conversion.
Thanks for listing your VW us Chris! We hope it goes to a good home where someone will keep it… charged up! If any of you have an unique classic that you would like to sell, please think about getting it featured here on Barn Finds!
The other day, we featured a short-lived 1966 VW Beetle due to the auction ending. That car sold for what seemed like a great price, but it wasn’t necessarily a hard to find version of the People’s Car. However, this highly original 1955 oval-window Beetle here on craigslist in Vermont is desirable for being an early model that retains some desirable accessories and is said to have been the actual car featured in a vintage VW billboard advertisement. The seller is asking for $7,500 or trade for another vintage VW that’s less of a project.
The seller sounds like an interesting guy: he recently bought a historic church (plenty of those languishing in VT) and doesn’t have the bandwidth for another restoration project. He says the Beetle has clearly been loved, and he bought the car from the second original owner. The interior remains in excellent condition for the age, with an uncut dash bearing the original radio and seats that look like they were hardly sat in. The headliner could use replacement, but that’s the only major flaw inside.
On the outside, the car has been repainted once in its lifetime, and the seller says the lower quarters on the passenger side could use some work. Overall, this is astonishingly solid for a New England car of this vintage. I absolutely dig the Euro-spec “blade” bumpers that were installed by a previous owner in the 70s, which, along with the OEM roof rack and NOS exhaust included with the sale, tells you something about the commitment to originality the Beetle’s previous caretakers have adhered to. Also note this Bug still has its desirable semaphore turn signals attached.
Overall, this is a pleasingly honest example of an early VW Beetle, and I’ve always thought the oval windows were among the prettiest generations of this air-cooled classic. The motor hasn’t been fired up but does turn freely; given the love that’s been lavished on this example, I’ll bet that it was treated well mechanically, too. The paint? Well, I do dig the patina, but I might be tempted to clean up the fenders and leave the rest as-is, along with installing the new whitewalls included in the sale on re-chromed hubcaps. How would you restore it – or would you?