Home > Airkewld Army > The History/Plans of my VW
The History of each of our VW's has a unique story. So much that we created a section to read about these said stories and they are all interesting, relative and somewhat similar to each of us. Enjoy some of the highlighted stores the PRO's have chosen from the #AirkewldArmy who submitted it here after subscribing.

  • Hello everyone,Way back in the 80’s i was a high school student driving every VW I could get my hands on. I ended up owning quite a few. Bugs, Squareback's, one fast back and my favorite a sweet Notchback. Which got totaled when some dude took a stop sign and I “T” boned him.Fast track to a few years ago while working I came across a 63 VW bug. No engine, minimal interior, no rust but needed a lot of body work. I gave the gentleman $1200.00 bucks and my journey to build the Vw I always wanted back then began. Stripped, media blast , and I began restoring my 63 bug for three years. Buying parts every month religiously .Now a have a beautiful stratus blue 63vw bug which I ended up doing every piece of restoration myself including bodywork and interior. The only thing I didn’t do was spray it. Luckily I got turned on to a Porsche painter which I traded electrical work for part of paint job. It came out fn awesome. Running dual 40 idf Weber’s , not much chrome on engine. Just clean and simple I had purchased a long block from the same gentleman that sold me the bug. He had an old German mechanic that had built the motor for another bug. The day I picked up my engine the old man was not there and by the time I returned a few weeks later. The old man had passed.. one day Ill tear it apart and see what he had put in there. For now, I drive the shit out of my bug. I’ve even done a few VW shows. It’s lowered in the rear and has drop spindles in the front. The plan is to one day install an air ride and drop it into the weeds. Thanks for opportunity, Tom P. Ventura, Ca.
  • I had always wanted a classic vw ever since I was little kid and would ride along with my grandpa in his blue 74 super beetle. Over time I would look at classifieds online and every once in awhile by a hot wheels at Walmart but never seemed to have the money, time, or even space to work on one. Finally about a year and a half ago, I had finally saved up enough to get one, and had the garage space to work on it. Had a couple I was seriously considering and then I was diagnosed with Classic Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Went through both the chemotherapy and radiation and one of the things that kept me going was telling myself that when I made it through I’d finally buy my VW. I’ve been in remission for 8 months now and in April I finally did it. Bought a 1974 thing. Originally from California it was owned by an air cooled vw mechanic in southeast Missouri until his passing a few years ago. It’s mostly stock and I’ve been doing little things to it to get it ready for driving in modern traffic but like converting the brakes over to disc, tuning the engine a little, and I probably need to get around to installing the seat belts. I love driving it, and the fact that it’s a 74 like my grandpa’s feels like a little tribute to him.
    And while this is the first VW that I’ve worked on and there’s definitely been a learning curve, a sometimes frustrating day in the garage sure as hell beats sitting in chemotherapy. Jay S. Harrisburg, Illinois
  • Hello, My name is Damon Smith and I currently own a 1971 Standard Beetle That I purchased in 1999 as a second vehicle for my then wife and I. It was pretty much in stock condition at the time and I used it as a daily driver for about 7 to 8 years. I did make some modifications along the way, I built a 1776 cc engine for it, this engine lasted a few yrs but eventually it dropped a valve and destroyed the #3 cylinder and head. So I then built a 2005 cc engine to replace it. I put a 2" narrowed front beam on it and lowered the front end and put disk brakes on the front. In 2006 I was active duty Military and received orders to Germany. My then wife and I split at this time and I put the car into storage for the duration of my assignment in Germany. In 2009 I was stationed back in the US in Washington State and I brought the car along with me. I eventually got the car running again and once again used it as my daily commuter to and from work for a couple more years. I eventually just quit driving the car due to all the little projects that it needs ( my intent has always been to restore the car, But life always seems to have other plans). The car has basically been sitting in Storage now since 2012 only being driven around the block or through the neighborhood once a month or so. I have contemplated selling the car multiple times over the years but for whatever reason I have not been able to let it go ( it truly is a part of the family now ). I am Currently retired from the military and working at an FAA repair station in Spokane Valley Wa. I have decided to give the car some much needed love and attention and I am preparing to start a full pan off resto-mod on the car (long overdue). My vision for the car is to put an air ride system on it, a 4"narrowed front beam and a respectable street engine. I am hoping to start this project within the next month. That is the very short story of my Beetle. I look forward to working with the PROs there at Airkewld once I get the body off the pan and take stock of all the real hidden challenges to come. Sincerely, Damon Smith
  • Hello, My Name is Edward and this is the story of the two VWs I never thought I would own. The first one I bought was roughly a year ago at the beginning of the pandemic, A few miles away from me layed a neglected Bradley GT. The VW kit car, this one based on a 1964 frame with a swing axle transmission, was run down, broken and missing pieces. I had seen a Bradley GT once when I was graduating from high school and at the time knew nothing about them until 5 years later one popped up out of nowhere and I bought it on an impulse, getting myself into way more work than I was prepared for. I decided I would rebuild the car from the ground up learning as I go since it came with a donor body that had no frame. I ripped apart the main car taking all the fiberglass panels apart and sanding them and am now preparing myself to attempt to paint them in primer. I have learned to weld to fix the frame on the car as it had severe rust at the head buying replacement metal parts to weld on getting that done. This is where the 2nd VW pops up 2 months later. My brother decided he would take the donor body and rebuild that and we would both have Bradley GT Kit cars. He proceeded to go out and look for a donor car that the frame could be used for the Bradley GT. He settled on a VW Super Beetle from 1974 that seemed to have everything. Ripping the body off we started panel by panel as he was looking into selling parts he wasn't going to need to recoup the money and when we got to the frame we realized that the front suspension was completely different. Both of us new to VW later learned that the frame would not work. This being the case we started researching how to convert it into the proper front suspension for the Bradley. This was not meant to be as while we were looking into it over a few weeks he was driving and found a 79 corvette for pennies and decided to do that instead of the Bradley, abandoning the donor body and the 1974 Super Beetle. With the Super Beetle taking up space he was getting ready to dump it as he no longer wanted it as he had a corvette and I swooped in to buy it as being a Michigan car It had extremely little rust for being as old as it is and i decided i will also restore that car as well. Currently the super Beetle sits in pieces as I work on finishing the Bradley. In a few days I'm going to make the drop pans for it and put the Bradley body back onto the frame it came on for good with no rust left, learning a lot in the process. The Bradley will require it to fabricate the plexiglass doors, plexiglass rear window, make a new interior and the final challenge for that car rebuild the motor with the hope of having it done sometime in april/may 2022. The super beetle sits for now as it needs everything to be inspected and cleaned up still. From initial inspections the transmission seems frozen as the owner before my brother had blowtorched through the axles and will need a new one or be rebuilt. The seats are missing and the hunt for that will go on. This being said i plan to finish bradley 1 first, then complete the super beetle, Bradley 2 is unknown as i dont want to see it go to a junkyard but unsure if i will be able to find it a home or finance its rebuild after the beetle. Thank You For Reading Edward Jager

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