JBugs Video Series

1971 VW Super Beetle - Rear Kick Panel & Under Seat Assembly:

Video Overview:

We can’t wait to get the seats installed in our 1971 Super Beetle but before we can, we need to button up all the stuff under the rear seat. We’ll hook up the rear heater ducts, get new baffles installed, and install new kick panels. Then we’ll work on hooking our amplifiers on a custom made mount, and we’ll hook up a battery, a main fuse box and our starter! Follow along as our restoration gets closer to the end!

Video Tips:

Tools used in this video:
Small Flat Blade Screwdriver
Wire Cutters
10mm Socket
13mm Socket
3” Extension
6” Extension
13mm Wrench
Wire Stripers
Jig Saw
Trim Tool
Razor Blade
Various Allen Wrenches
Wire Crimpers
Heat Gun
13mm Wrench
Impact Driver with Philips Bit
Rubber Mallet

Additional Parts:
Blue 18 Gauge Wire
12” Wide Pine Board
Shrink & Glue Butt Splices
4 Terminal Maxi Blade Fuse Box
Self Taping Screws
Group 42 Battery

Video Transcript:

Hello! Sam here with JBugs.com
Take a seat while we get everything in place underneath our rear seat.
We're still working on the interior of our 1971 Super Beetle and now that the front carpet has been installed
we can install the rear kick panels, after we hook up the rear foot well vents and cables.
We start by installing the vent flaps which will clip onto the center post inside the vent with the cable on the flap pointing towards the center of the car.
Since the floor vent cables were on backorder when we first installed these, and still are when we filmed this, we actually installed rear heater cables in their place.
With the left floor vent control lever up, we trim the cable to a rough length, and slide the cable connector over both cables.
We move the left lever down so that the cable is sticking out as far as possible.
Then, slide the connector up so that both cables are overlapping, and we trim it again just past the connector.
Both cables are slid into the cable once more, and with the duct flap manually pushed closed, the set screws are tightened.
Testing the operation with the lever, we can see that the vent opens well but doesn't close all the way.
Since we installed new floor pans and rewelded the cable tubes back in place, the tubes need to be realigned.
After a bit of bending, so that the cable has a more direct path to the duct, the lever opens and closes the flap properly.
Now, we can set the kick panel in place on this side.
Way back when we disassembled our interior, we noted that other than being dirty, our original kick panels were in good shape.
But, they aren't quite as nice as a new set.
As we will be using the heaters, we cut the blocked off hole from the new kick panel, and then snap on the original duct trim that we took off the original.
The kick panel is set in place on the floor and over the heater duct.
Once the opposite side is completed, we can set our rear seat crossbar in place.
The kick panels are lined up with the cross bar and the bolts at either side are installed.
Now, we'll get to work on cleaning up all the wiring for our amplifiers that's on the drivers side floor.
With a little CAD, or Cardboard Aided Design, we come up with a template that will sit on top of the edges of the flor pan.
We can mount our amps on top of this panel and the wires will have room underneath.
Using a little movie magic, a jigsaw, and a piece of wood, we turn the cardboard template into a wood amplifier rack.
We test the fit and mock up our amplifiers and then we can work on some of the wiring for the amps.
We attach a blue remote wire with a shrouded connector to the original black defroster wire that we hooked up to a key hot on our fuse box.
This will turn on our amplifiers when we turn on our key.
The black wire could have also been hooked up to a stereo remote wire.
Next, we run our power wires for the amplifiers over the tunnel, towards the battery and we hook up our main power wire for the car to the T-junction that we installed on our main wiring harness.
These three wires will hook up to our aftermarket maxi blade fuse box once it's installed.
We install some ground wires for the amplifiers and attach them to a body to pan bolt.
Now, all the wires we'll need for the amplifiers and the car that are in this area, are hooked up or ready to be connected.
Before all that, we'll want to cover up out heater ducts.
Our original vent baffle covers weren't in good shape but the outer wrap was still intact.
We use it as a template and cut out replacements from a new piece of heat shield padding.
The new vent cover is wrapped around the heater duct and reusable zip-ties hold it in place.
For those that don't have an original cover to use as a template, we've made a printable version.
Just search at JBugs.com for the hear shield pad, the template is linked on that page.
Now, we can wrap our amplifier mount with some black vinyl and trim out the holes that will sit under the amps.
The rack is set in place in the car and the various wires for the amps are pulled out of the appropriate holes.
The large amplifier will power our subwoofer so we pull out the subwoofer RCA cables and connect them to the amp.
The subwoofer speaker wire is connected and the large gauge power and ground wires are connected.
The blue remote wire, and an additional length of blue wire that will run to our smaller amp, are connected as well.
All the wiring is tucked under the amp to check the fit.
Then we pull the amp up and out of the way so we can access the other wires.
The four channel amplifier will connect to the front and rear RCA's.
The four speaker wires for the front and rear speakers, the smaller power wire, and ground wires we ran earlier
and the blue remote wires, are all but spliced into the harness with shrink and glue connectors.
Both amplifiers are set in place, tucking the wires underneath, and then screwed down to finish the installation.
We're left with a tidy looking under seat area and the nice thing is the whole mount can be pulled up and out if needed.
Moving to the opposite side, we'll work on getting the battery cables and fuse box installed.
We start by installing a new battery cable grommet on a positive battery cable and silicone spray helps so the cable slides through easily.
The cable and grommet are set into the pan and the grommet is worked into place with a flat head screwdriver.
We set our battery in place so we can check the length of the ground cable.
With the fit confirmed, we bolt the cable in place at a pan to body bolt.
At the back of the car, through the engine compartment, we install the positive battery cable up to a new starter.
The starter wire is plugged into the solenoid and the starter is bolted up to our rebuilt transmission.
Note that if this were an original transmission, we'd want to replace the starter bushing.
Back inside the car, we check the length of the positive battery cable we just bolted up against our fuse box
along with the length of the second battery cable which will feed power to the fuse box.
The battery is pulled out of the way, we double check the length of the starter wire, we cut it to length, strip the end off, and attach it to the input side of the fuse box.
The fuse box is attached to the chassis with some self-tapping screws.
Then, we cut, strip, and attach the main power wire for the car, along with the power wire for our amplifiers to the outputs of the fuse box.
The battery is set back in place and the second battery cable is connected to our positive terminal.
Our battery has a built in cover, if yours doesn't, we highly recommend installing a terminal cover.
The battery cable is routed to the fuse box, cut to length, stripped, and connected next to the starter cable on input side of the fuse box.
All the fuses are installed; a 70amp for the car, a 20amp for our 4 channel amp, and a 60 amp fuse for the subwoofer amplifier.
Then, the protective cover is snapped in place.
Finally, the battery hold down plate is installed and the negative battery cable will be installed when we're ready to turn on the car and test our electrical system.
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