News from the Kombis

19 11 2011

Got Taiga Lily out of the garage today and started to complete the ceiling of the driver’s cabin: All cables taped together and fixed in the rails left and right above the doors and above the windcreen. Reimo Xtreme mats cut to seize and taped to the ceiling for insulation. Now the only thing still to be done this year is to cut and attach a covering panel. I also want to build a holder for the radio, above the rear view mirror. But that will have to wait till next year.

I also gave the Old Lady a quick wash. So that she is pretty when she will be put into storage next week.


Getting the old kombi ready for winter

11 11 2011

I finally got around to clear out the old kombi and to start getting her ready for winter storage. Over summer, the Old Lady was abused as general storage room while I was working on Taiga Lily. And in July I had taken out her nice dashboard to implant it into Taiga Lily, but then never got around getting Taiga Lily’s old dashboard into the Old Lady. So yesterday I finally cleared out all the rubbish and put the dashboard back in. And how beautiful she looks again! Will need one more day to get the instrument unit back in and then need to ship her to the garage.

July 2011 - gutted cabin after dashboard was removed

Nov. 2011 - Dashboard back in place

Living room/kitchen area accessible again after tools and rubbish have been cleared out

Kombis in the sun

4 09 2011

I had to move out of the hall where the two buses have been in temporary storage for the last 8 months. Still have not found a new place, so the two are currently sitting in a backyard. Luckily the weather is finally a bit more summery here in Berlin.
We bought a second-hand Westfalia roof some three years ago, but I have never come around to build it onto the old bus. Just to get it out of the way and have it stored safely, I finally placed it on top of the old bus. And suddenly she looks like a full blown camper van. Admittedly like a quite filthy one, but still. I think I will keep the roof and build it in in a couple of years, when I hopefully come around to make up that bus again.

Changing dashboards

10 07 2011

I decided to swap the dashboard, together with oil temperatur gauge and battery voltmeter, from the old bus to the new bus. Will probably also swap the wind screen wiper motor. The dashboard removal allowed to clean the front panels and to have a look at the back of instrument panels. They carry date stamps. With the old bus, it fits to the manufacturing date of the car. For Taiga Lily someone seems to have fitted a 1979 instrument into the 1976 bus.

The old bus without the dasboard.

Dashboard from the old bus.

The main instrument block of Taiga Lily (upper one, VW clock on the left) and of the old bus (with a clock I had added in 1995).

And then there were three…

2 07 2011

A friend of mine bought another T2b – the orange beauty. The hall slowly fills.

The Old Lady is Still Alive

22 03 2011

Two months after her road-worthy certificate had run out in May 2010, I drove our old campervan into storage and put her aside for good. Engine and clutch had not been at their best at that point. When in September the engine refused to start altogether, I sadly accepted the fact that the old lady had reached the end of her first life.

Autumn and winter passed and last Sunday I finally got around to fill the tank for long-term storage. And realized it had simply been almost fully empty. After a minute of trying to start her, the engine fired up again and the old lady started moving! I could not take her out on the street, so for the next ten minutes I happily drove in circles in the large backyard of the workshop. And realized how very heavy the old bus actually is, with my super stable self-made camper conversion. Will keep that in mind and build the conversion for Taiga Lily with lighter wood and more simple constructions.

When she was younger than today... (May 2009)

Fuel Pump Problems

28 01 2011

It turns out getting the leaking fuel pump fixed is not that easy. Had I still the smaller 50 PS engine, it would be buying a 25-Euro replacement pump, getting it installed and bingo. But for the 70 PS engine the originally mechanical fuel pump is not available anymore. So I need an electronic one. Which I am told should be supplemented with some electronic safety mechnism to make sure the pump stops pumping when the engine stops. Which is of critical importance in an accident situation. Now that the garage found all this out, the parts are ordered but have not yet arrived. So the first ride with Taiga Lily on the ring road around Berlin has to wait for another week. Bummer.

To keep your spirits up, here are some pictures from a trip to the North Cape.

Tea break on the way through Latvia.


Campervan Meeting at the North Cape.


Midnight sun on the 10th of July.