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It's time to begin! If you remember from my newbie post, I bought a partially started FF/CMC Kit. Pan is shortened, a few things done like the upholstery on the seats, but beyond that nothing is done yet.

My disclaimer: This project is going to take awhile, with periods between work possibly lasting months as time and money become available. We are raising 3 daughters, 14, 12 and 10 so our lives are very busy!

I have a 2 phase plan. Phase 1 is to get this baby on the road. Do the things I need to for safety and basic operation. That way we can all enjoy this car before the girls are graduated and gone. Phase 2 will be more invasive, tear the car back down, with all the stuff I really want like disc brakes, fancy paint job, custom wheels and a big HP motor. That stuff will have to wait though in order to meet our goal of enjoying this as a family.

First task is to take the body off the pan and assess and inspect everything really well. Which leads me to my first question.

Is there anything I should look for that you guys have learned by experience, that maybe the assembly manual doesn't cover or account for? Any tips and tricks that would be good to accomplish now before assembly?

Let me hear your ideas!

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Great question. My answer is not meant to boastful, so I hope it doesn't sound that way!

My first car was a 1966 VW Beetle that I did a full body off restoration while in high school. The only thing I didn't do myself was reupholster the seats. I drove a 1970 Beetle while doing the restoration. One of the many ways I made money to pay for college was to maintained a Beetle and a Thing for some older people at my church. I have rebuilt engines, cared for and maintained all my own vehicles and boats, restored a 1975 Yamaha XS650 and a 1978 Kawasaki KZ1000 (boy I wish I still had that one!) and turned an old YJ Jeep into a rock crawler. I have welding skills and access to fabricating equipment, which will probably come in handy for this project.

Having cut my teeth on VWs, I was really excited to have found this Speedster as our first family hot rod!


Sounds like you've got a good plan that works for your busy (family) schedule.

I'm sure there will be a lot of recommendations from the conglomerate minds on this site. A LOT of expert recommendations, so just sort through what best fits your build (time) availability and funds at the moment and keep plugging on.

Looking forward of following your project progress, Trey, hopefully with pics!


I got a kick out of "Phase 1 is to get this baby on the road. Do the things I need to for safety and basic operation. That way we can all enjoy this car before the girls are graduated and gone."

Due to a lot of "work things" getting in the way, my CMC build took about seven years with help from my teenage son.  The final completion missed his Junior Prom, Senior Prom, highschool graduation and college graduation, but he finally got to use it as a getaway car when he got married.  That was a while ago - He's 43 now.....

It was a really good project and we had, and still have, a lot fun in the hobby.

You guys will, too!

I didn't find this group until well after my car was declared "finished" but we all know that they're never really done - you just move on to more and more "refinements".  If I had this group as technical and moral support during my build, I  (a.) would have been done sooner and (b.) would have done more than a few things differently.  

So ask questions and we'll all do the best we can to lead you astray....  I mean, help you out.  

Welcome to the Madness!

Last edited by Gordon Nichols
@WOLFGANG posted:

WAIT - It's 40 hours?  I thought it was 40 years!

@DannyP posted:

I guess it is for Greg and Al...

You think you're sooooo funny; just 'cause you've got a running car...

@TreyG posted:

If I have a specific question about something I am working on, is it best to post that question in the appropriate topic forum and keep this build thread more as an informational log on my progress?

@Stan Galat posted:


What a courteous question. Welcome to the madness, Trey!

I find it easier if everything concerning a person's build is in 1 place (so you can keep track of all the changes and/tribulations along the way- if you or anyone wants to re-hash something about your build it's easy to find), but that's only my opinion, so take your pick.

@Al Gallo posted:
What a great family project!  Welcome.

We can help you spend your money.

Of course, what everybody has said- Welcome To The Madness!  And that last bit is one of my favorites (we do that part so well!).  Al

Last edited by ALB
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