JBugs Video Series

1971 VW Super Beetle - Front Quarter Panel & Cross Member Repair:

Video Overview:

Now that our rusted heater channel is out of the way we can repair the damaged front quarter panel, rear quarter panel and rear cross member so we can install the replacement heater channel. Follow along with our tech as he covers patching in some new sheet metal pieces on our 1971 Super Beetle.

Vehicle prep: 0:48
Rear cross member prep: 1:21
Quarter panel prep: 1:49
Rear cross member repair: 2:14
Front fenderwell panel repair: 2:37

Video Tips:

Tools used in this video:

Angle Grinder
Wire Wheel
Cut Off Disc
Flap Wheel Sanding Disc
Measuring Tape
Vice Grips
MIG Welder

Video Transcript:

Hello! I'm Sam with JBugs.com
We're doing some rust repairs on our 1971 Super Beetle restoration 
and a friend of mine was nice enough to let us use his shop so we can show you all the process. In our last two videos, we cut out the left heater channel and cut out and reinstalled the front firewall nut plates.
Before we start, we'll make sure to say, wear appropriate protective gear. 
Work in a safe and well-ventilated environment, and only perform work that is well within your capabilities. Cutting, grinding, and welding, can all be dangerous so make sure to use all the necessary precautions.
The last repair we need to do before we install the new heater channel, 
is to repair the rusted out rear cross member and quarter panel. We have rust repair patch panels for both sections but we won't be using the entire panels. We're only going to be patching in pieces as needed.
With all the rust removed, in our last video, we set the replacement cross members in place 
to compare the new panel to the original and we can see where we want to cut in the new panel. 
We pick the vertical rib, just to the side of the cutout area, 
and we cut the new panel at the bend and across the top.
We check the rough fit and we're happy with it so we move to the quarter panel 
and measure how large of a piece we'll need to cover the repair of our missing fender flange area. We cut a piece from the quarter panel and check the fitment to make sure that the fender nut alignment is correct. 
The edges of the metal piece are all cleaned down to bare metal 
and we set the fender nut flange piece in place and tack weld it to the quarter panel.
We check the fit of the rear cross member section one more time 
and once we're happy with the alignment, we tack weld it in place. 
Both sections are completely welded in and since the metal is relatively thin, 
we move around, only welding on either piece for a few moments. This helps to prevent the metal from warping.
Once both panels at the rear are completely welded in, we move to the front. 
A section of the rust repair panel, from the rear, is set in place. 
We mark out the rough shape, 
cut it out, and once it's trimmed to fit, we clamp it in place with a pair of vice grips and tack weld the panel to the body.
Just like the rear, we move around while welding so we don't warp the panel. 
Once the entire seam is welded up, 
we grind the panel down smooth, inside and out, and we're ready to install the new heater channel. That will be in our next video though.
Thanks for watching!
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and when you need parts for your vintage VW, head over to JBugs.com