We're on the final stretch with the days counting down and work nearing an end. Sam gets the bumpers installed along with new decklid, hood, and door seals.


JBugs Video Blog, VW Tech Tips

Watch the video to see Sam's progress on the 1967 VW Beetle.

In this video we install a few more seals, specifically a new hood seal and a new decklid seal to our 1967 Sunroof Beetle, and then we install the original bumpers at the front and rear along with the old brackets, a few new bolts and new bumper bracket seals. Then Sam pulls the window regulators and door latches from the doors to make sure that the windows roll up and down well and the door handles and locks work properly. Watch and enjoy as Sam gets this project ready to roll to the upcoming VW Round Up in Florence, AZ!

Video Transcript

Happy face, happy face. We've got two happy faces if you ask me.

Hi, Monday October 30th. We've got two weeks to go and we're just about there. At this point it's just kind of making it more comfortable, a little bit more sealed up, a little bit more operational. Get the window regulators working. I still need to get that sunroof working. We'll get there, hopefully. If nothing else, I'll just tape the dang thing in place.

I still need to do the seat upholstery front and rear. Put on the door panels front and rear. And that's going to be about it as far as the work left to do on the interior.

On the exterior, I did get a new decklid seal in place. Very basic. I'm going to go over the process of how this is done, but I'll be doing that on the hood seal which is a little bit more involved. The only thing special about doing the decklid seal is once it's in place, cut a little notch in the bottom for any water to drain out. Other than that, that closes nice and solid. No shakes, no rattles once it's closed.

Unlike our doors, that needs a seal around the outside. Obviously, I need to get these window regulators working smoothly. But for now I'm going to get to work on this hood seal so that we have a kind of sealed trunk. So let me get to work on that.

All right one of the most important parts before you ever start to try and put a new seal in is to make certain that all of the old seal is out. As we can see in that groove right there, that's not the case. So we've got, looks like, all the seal out there, but then we have some remnants of the old seals still stuck in there. And that lip has been crushed down so we'll get our plastic pry tool, open that up a little bit and make certain that all that seal is removed all the way around the opening. When I mean all the way around, I mean all the way around up inside that groove and down that side of the hood, all the way to the bottom.

All right down here, this channel is just beat out of shape. Not really round at all. I've got a little hook tool. Try and use that to bend that open a little bit better so that we've actually got a channel in it. Do same thing right there. Although it's actually in it's up, it's just down like it should be. There we go. Get that rounded properly at least a little bit better than she was. There's not much I can do with this guy as much tension is on it but.

All right, now I'm going to come with an air hose, blow this channel out all the way around. Make certain all that dirt and debris is out of that channel. We got it as clean as possible. Then I'll spray everything down with some silicone spray as I'm going through. And we'll try to get everything back in place.

All right, so I'm going to start on one side or the other and get the hood seal. These molded corners have these three nipples that get pressed and pulled into place in there which seals this edge. And then like the decklid we've got a channel here for this lip and then across the back we've got a similar lip that runs all the way across the back edge sealing the top edge of the hood. So I'm going to get to work on those.

Most important, silicone spray. And honestly this is a heck of a lot easier with these hood hinges out of the way because then you can actually reach up in the backside and grab those nipples and just pull them through. Sometimes you can still reach in with a pair of needle nose and carefully get them pulled. Like that one, sweet.

Actually a little bit more light would probably help me. Not that that's going to help you guys, but sorry, I'm the one doing the work.

And when you're not concerned about the paint on the car this is considerably easier. That's two out of three. Please Lord, give me number three. Almost there. I've got it. Feels that way, woohoo! Got it.

Bring you guys in for a closer look. Come on, focus up. There we go. One, two, and three. And this corner piece is now all in place. Now I'm going to get to work along that back edge.

Silicone spray, don't be shy. The seal, the body, the channel, everything in here spray it all. And the easiest way to do these things is to kind of stretch the seal to thin it out and then try and press it into that channel. Looks like everything's in place. Good, good. Keep on stretching it that way.

All right, now got to get it sucked back so that this corner lines up back to that corner.

Awesome. All right, now I'm going to work on this corner way over here.

That side, all across the back, that corner all done. Can't totally see, but all three of those are in. Hood seal’s in place all along the back all the way to that side.

Note that I'm spraying the back side of the seal just as much as the top side because the back side needs to slide against the body. You see as I do that, I can just stretch the seal out into the channel, press it in place and let it pull back in place. Just do that all the way around.

All right, little bit of a tail there. We'll cut that down and we'll go do the other side.

That seal is now in place all the way down and around. And even where it was really, really beat up and messed up before, especially in this area right here, now that the seal is in place you can come back with a pry tool and a mallet and get it really tapped back in place. And again if you were to do this before body work you can then come back, sand this, give it a couple layers of primer, smooth it out, and it's ready for paint. And the next time the hood seal goes in it looks perfect. But as it sits, hood seal is in place all the way around.

Now I'm going to try and close it and latch it. Well now we got a hood seal in place, so it doesn't want to latch. So I will spray some silicone on the edge of the rubber, on the edge of the metal, probably have to lengthen my pin in here a little bit. Probably a little bit even more, but we'll see.

There we go. It latched. Will it unlatch? There we go, beautiful.

I'm going to work on the bumpers now. Here we go. Our original bumpers and brackets, some new seals, new seals. I don't need those. Those are door check rod stops. I don't need those right now. You go in there. Some long bolts to bolt the upper brackets in place to the uprights. And then I'll just go through my nuts and bolts bin to get all the hardware, bolt these in place inside the trunk.

First things first though, I'm going to make sure that I can actually thread some hardware in here because often times those guys get stripped out. So let me start with that. Let's give them all a shot of a little PB Blaster just to help assist things.

That one's beautiful. Oh that one maybe not so much. There we go. There we go. Good to go.

I'm going to go out in a limb here and just throw the seals in. Like so. And then we've got our upper seals and these guys are very, very tight. Once your seals are in, lots the silicone spray. Stretch them out around those pieces.

More silicone. More silicone. More silicone. There we go.

That one's a little bit more rusty than this one so I hopes this one will go a little bit better.

Just like that, we've got our bumper bracket in place through the upper grommet, through the upper grommet and now we can slide our bumper in.

All right hopefully I don't kick the camera while I'm working on this view. And hopefully you guys get a decent enough shot of what the heck I'm doing.

As always, silicone spray. That feels good. That feels good as well. Very loosely bolt in our back bolts. Now, I can get these two guys started. That's good. That's good. Gap there is good. Gap there is good.

Our hood taps just a touch. We can only go so far out on that one so we'll match that and then we'll try and kick some angle on these top brackets. I'm going tighten that bolt. And then try and match that gap there. A little bit bigger on this side. Just taps. I can definitely get some wiggle out of that so my main concern is my gap here and here. And I'm happy with that. And that looks pretty even.

Tighten these other front one over here. And get these guys tightened.

Let's see how we did.

I can live with that.

Both upper and lower brackets and seals all in place. And that's how everything's supposed to look inside the trunk and at the bumper, on that side and at the bumper. Should be decent here.

How was my gap on my headlights? I don't know. I can't see far back. How about you? How's your view? I think that's pretty darn good. Sitting relatively level across the front of the car. I'm going to call that well done.

Across the back of the car we look good. Decklid clears. Let’s tighten those guys down. And then I'll work on the wiring, but for the most part that's good to go.

There we go. Everything's in place and we've got a fairly equal gap across the back. That’s the most important. Nothing hits, everything shuts.

Further inspection we can see that this side of the bumper is curved up where this side of the bumper is curved curve down. I'm going to use some mechanical leverage, aka a jack, and I'm going to jack this side of the bumper up. And that should even up the gap on the bumper. And I can see it's slanting ever slightly across the midsection right here. So hopefully by doing some, little bit of tweaking, which alleviates some of that damage right there. I'm going to jack that up. I'm going to tap on that and that should bring that bumper this bumper end up and level out our bumper and even up our gap on either side of the car.

Well we're definitely looking more level across here and here. Is it perfect? No, but it's better. How is our gap now? I got four fingers across the top there. Yeah still got about five fingers across the top there. Folks, it is what it is. Don't know that there's much more I can do. Good enough, we're going to call it and tighten these lights down and get to work on the wiring.

Now the big question is whether or not the reverse light switch works. But let me throw a fuse in there. Let me strip the wires. Brought them through the bumper brackets, hook them up temporarily, and see how it goes.

All right, moment of truth. Got a fuse in here. I got the lights just temporarily hooked up. Key on, we are in reverse. Next we have to drive the car to get it to engage reverse. Well, let's start the engine see what happens then.

We got reverse lights. I'm okay with this.

Routed the wire underneath the bumper bracket, through the bottom, behind the spacer, out and around. Hooked it up with a crimp-on male terminal end and a couple of horn wire boots hide that connection. So we've got our reverse lights both wired up the same.

All right, here's something that's bugged me since I put these guys on is that gap right there. I don't like it. Don't like it one bit. I mean, we're talking about eighth of an inch or more of gap in between the bottom of that chrome piece and that hinge.

I was looking at it and trying to determine what was the issue. Is the issue that this nut won't go down far enough? I mean, it's pretty close to bottoming out, but not quite. But this guy bottoms out and then that sits on top of that. So I think it's a combination of this post is too tall to sit down flush. Maybe there's too much junk inside this hinge or maybe it's just a combination of everything.

So what I'm going to do is I'm going to end up grinding the top of that down a little bit. I'm going grind the bottom of that down a little bit and see if I can't get that thing closer to the bottom so that this ends up being level on the top of the hinge. So follow along, see what happens.

That's much better. Can't even hardly fit the edge of my knife in there. That looks like a much better fit. So I ended up taking off just a little bit of the top of the metal hinge, a little bit of that brass piece, and then I actually went through and ground out the outside diameter. Or, ground down the outside diameter of the brass post. Now that mirror fits on top of that hinge much, much better. I'm going to do the same thing on the other side, but you guys know the process. It's those little things that make it look so much better.

And that's what we call attention to detail.

Got a door seal. This is an aftermarket, or a Brazilian seal, but seeing as we're not too concerned about it lasting forever, or at least lasting a long time, we're going to install some Brazilian door seals. Like everything else as far as seals go, they stretch and they compress. So as you stretch them it becomes a lot easier to get into that channel. However, what happens is by the time you get down to the bottom that corner is out of place.

Here's another one. Unfortunately that check rod has already been removed at some point and the clip has been lost. But we'll set that aside for now. We do have some new check rod stop which will give that a rubber stop to actually hold this door from going too far open. We'll slide that on in anticipation of putting that back in.

But anyway as I was saying, if we were to just work our way around, oh my goodness that seals way too long, well again rubber stretches rubber compresses. This is one of those points where you might stretch it to get it in place but this is one of those things that have to be compressed into place. So we get the corners in. And then we work and we compress the rubber in in between.

Same thing here. If we just start there and start there that's all well and good. Stretch these in segments and then push everything in. Had I just started at the top and just worked my way down you'd say that the door seal is too long. And that's not even trying to stretch anything. That's just by almost gravity. So again, we'll start with the corner we'll stretch it to get it set and then we'll stretch and compress.

New door seals are going to be tight. And now no jiggles, no rattles, nice and solid.

Let's put our check rod back in. That door seal is good to go. There we go.

Definitely got to work on this lock mechanism and this latch mechanism. Something's not quite right there.

I'm going to pull this window regulator out get it cleaned up so that I can actually roll the window up and down smoothly. So, get started on that. Probably going to have to roll this window up to begin with.

There, this should have been on that side. Somebody flipped it over and put it on the other side. That made life difficult.

That and that. And that guy is filthy. So I'm going to set this guy in the parts washer, let this thing soak for a little bit try and come out and clean out some of this gunk and debris from the track. And hopefully get this the guy working a little bit better.

While that is doing its thing over in the parts washer. I'm going to remove this door handle and this door lock mechanism and see if we can't figure on what's going on with that.

We'll go throw that in the parts washer as well clean it all up and then we'll go back and regrease everything. It just looks like everything is just dried out. Yeah, nothing wants to move.

To finish up the day, I've got this door stripped down as well. All the parts hanging out down in there. I've got the door all pulled apart. I've got both window regulators sitting in the parts washer. I've gone through rinsed out the tracks a couple times. I've gone through and spun them over with a pair of vice grips. They actually spin over relatively clean. I've got both door lock mechanisms sitting in there as well. Let those guys loosen any old rust, debris, grease, gunk. Although they weren't well greased which is probably why they aren't operating all that well. But I'll get those cleaned out, dried off, lubed up. Same thing with our regulators. We'll get that done up tomorrow.

And then we'll get back to the car which is looking good. I'll get all the doors put back together. We're going to be missing inside scrapers. I've soaked both side doors, the long felt channels. I've soaked both felt channels on both sides with silicone spray to try and get that felt to loosen up. Because if the window can't slide freely inside the felts, without the regulator, well it's only going to make it that much harder for that window regulator to push that window up and down.

Tomorrow's job will be getting these regulators back together. At which point then I'm ready to do some door panels front and rear. And maybe some seat upholstery. And then I still have to get that sunroof going.

Just kind of debating on whether or not I want to do the sunroof before I bother with the upholstery and I'm thinking I will. That way I don't get anything, debris, junk, gunk, parts, or whatnot on the new upholstery. So I guess after I get the doors put back together might get to work on the sunroof.

But that's tomorrow's problem, not today's problem.

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