Today, we show you how to remove the front link pin beam from a 1963 VW Beetle.

Not everyone has the luxury of buying a fully restored classic VW, which is why the JBugs crew offers how-to videos on our YouTube channel to help DIY-ers complete a restoration from the comfort of their own home.

by

VW Tech Tips


The next series of JBugs’ restoration videos includes a 1963 Beetle which will be lowered, narrowed and given serious stopping power with high quality disc brakes. Before any of the customization can be completed, we begin by removing the front link beam.

Follow this step-by-step guide to learn how to safely and successfully remove the front link beam and get your classic VW restoration literally up and running.

First things first, make sure you have the following tools:

• Wheel chocks • Crescent wrench
• Jack • Flathead screwdriver
• Jack stand • 13, 17 & 19mm wrench
• Lug wrench • 13, 15, 17 & 19mm socket
• Linesman pliers • 3/8” or ½” ratchet
• Hammer • 8mm allen key

Now we’re ready to get this restoration going!
1. Chock the rear wheels
2. Loosen front lug bolts on both tires
3. Jack-up the front end
4. Set jack-stands underneath front pan. Do not set stands underneath beam, as it will be removed
5. Lower car onto stands
6. Remove front tires from the drum

 Chock the rear wheels
 Loosen front lug bolts on both tires.


 Jack-up the front end
 Remove front tires from the drum


7. On the driver’s side, pull speedometer cable clip from grease cap
8. Remove grease cap to access the spindle nuts
9. Loosen spindle nuts, which are reverse threaded
10. Pull brake drum, bearings included, off the spindle
11. Cut the brake hose, as it will be replaced. If you aren’t replacing your cables and hoses, skip this step
12. Unbolt the backing plate from the spindle and remove the complete assembly with brake shoes and wheel cylinders in tact

pull speedometer cable clip from grease cap
Remove grease cap to access the spindle nuts




Loosen spindle nuts
Pull brake drum, bearings included, off the spindle




Unbolt the backing plate from the spindle
remove the complete assembly


13. Pull speedometer cable from the spindle and tuck it away into the inner fender well
14. Remove the left outer tie rod from spindle
15. Remove the left inner tie rod from the pitman arm
16. Remove inner right tie rod end now that it’s easily accessible
17. Loosen the link pins from the control arms by removing two lock bolts which are located on the upper and lower control arm
18. With the assistance of a hammer, remove spindle and carrier from the control arm by pushing the link pins through the arms and tapping the assembly free

remove the complete assembly
Remove the left inner tie rod from the pitman arm




Remove inner right tie rod end
Remove spindle and carrier from the control


19. Our 1963 Beetle doesn’t have a gas tank at the moment, but if yours does, you will need to remove the tank in order to access the steering damper, steering coupler and upper beam to body bolts
20. Unbolt the steering damper from the beam
21. Unbolt the steering coupler from the steering column
22. Because our cotter pins are stubborn, we need to remove the clamp bolt for the column followed by the removal of the column from the splined end
23. Remove two upper bolts from the body to the beam
24. Following the same steps for the left side, remove the right drum brake, backing plate and spindle assembly from the beam

Unbolt the steering damper from the beam
Unbolt the steering coupler from the steering column




remove the clamp bolt for the column
Remove two upper bolts from the body to the beam




remove the right drum brake
Remove backing plate and spindle assembly


25. At this point, by removing 4 beam bolts, your classic VW front beam can be removed as a fairly complete unit; however, our 1963 Beetle came with too long of a shock bolt which penetrated through the front inner fender well and makes removing the beam more difficult so we are going to include a few more steps
26. Remove the sway bar clamps from the trailing arms by bending back the fold over tab on the clamp plate
27. Tap the clamp plate off the clamp and pry the clamp off the trailing arm
28. Complete steps 26 & 27 for all four clamps

Remove 4 beam bolts
Remove the sway bar clamps from the trailing arms




pry the clamp off the trailing arm
Pry off remaining sway bar clamps


29. Remove the sway bar
30. Unbolt and remove the right shock absorber from the shock tower and lower control arm
31. Loosen the grub screws on the upper and lower control arms
32. Remove grub screws from trailing arms
33. Remove trailing arms from the beam

Unbolt and remove the right shock absorber
Unbolt and remove the right shock absorber




Remove grub screws from trailing arms
Remove grub screws from trailing arms


34. Pull up on the upper control arm and remove the suspension stop
35. Using a hammer, move the upper control arm past the suspension stop and pull it out of the beam
36. Following steps 30-35, complete the removal of the left shock absorber and left upper control arm
37. Now that all four trailing arms are removed, remove the four beam to chassis bolts and carefully remove the beam
38. Unbolt the steering box from the beam and the disassembly is complete!

move the upper control arm past the suspension stop
remove the four beam to chassis bolts




carefully remove the beam
Unbolt the steering box from the beam


We will be saving the front spindle carriers, the trailing arms and the steering box. We also save ALL of the hardware and lock plates. Some will be re-used, some will be replaced. Either way, save the hardware you remove until the project is complete! You never know when an original bolt or lock plate may come in handy.

For the full video and to learn more about completing your own restoration visit the JBugs’ YouTube channel. For additional info contact us at 1-800-231-1784 or sales@jbugs.com. You can also follow us on social media: Instagram @jbugs_california_pacific & Facebook @JbugsVWParts.

About the Author:

While relatively new to JBugs & the VW scene, Sarah Dixon is an all around classic car, off-road, & motorcycle enthusiast. She has shown great interest in learning more about classic VW culture.

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