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Previous Next Up Topic Public / Dune Buggy Build Advice / Bigger problem has arisen (6051 hits)
By mark p 4106 Date 2014-08-07 23:17
Upon closer tear down and inspection it appears I have a chassis problem the front beam is on an angle and rides high on the drivers side so I might have a twisted chassis it also appears to be shorter on the drivers side from axle to axle by 1 1/2 inches meaning if I could push the drivers side beam 3/4 of an inch forward it would square up (pushing the passenger side back 3/4 of an inch
Is there anything I can do or am I in for a new complete chassis???
By Ron S 3875 Date 2014-08-08 13:28
Do you know if your pan was a modified super beetle pan?
What I am asking is was your pan modified from MacPherson struts by replacing the Napoleon hat.
If this is the case a poor modification could could have lead to the bad angle and size difference.
Also if this was the case the repair would be to follow the directions (found on line) used that made the modification in the first place by cutting off and replacing the front hat.
Of course you could buy a pan and modify it for use (if not already done) but would have to make sure the pan serial was corrected.
By mark p 4106 Date 2014-08-08 17:59 Edited 2014-08-08 20:31
Yes was looking at the new pan idea what's the easiest way to get the serial corrected if I buy a new pan?
As for what pan, that I can't be sure of but it does look like a bad job caused the problem
By Ron S 3875 Date 2014-08-09 18:36
A few months back I picked up a complete beetle pan with beam front and swing axle rear.  It was a 2005 or 07 (I can not remember which).  All it will need is shortened to proper size for the fiberglass body.  Nice part is it has all the good stuff done (disc brakes and newer bucket seat style). 
Major problem is it is a Mexico pan so it has a Mexico serial number making it harder to get a US DMV title (but not impossible). 
So with that said you can get a much newer VW Beetle pan for good prices if your close to Mexico or a border state that has some in the junk yards. Otherwise you will need to seek a older Beetle pan but make sure it is a non-super Beetle pan, if you buy a super pan you will need to shorten and replace the napoleon hat.
Our DMV can take the pan from donor car and combine the titles into one title with donor serials added to current numbers at really fair cost.  Legally this is the true approach. 
But I have heard that a really good welder can marry the pans making your old one repaired from the donor (shortening the pan is done in the area behind the front seats.  But I caution that this in some states is very likely an improper practice and subject to violations.
I meet a local VW guy that had a issue a few years back where some one had cut the serial out by only cutting about 6 inches around the number then welded it on to another pan, it was a bit to obvious after much legal issues with DMV he finally won out as he had a clear title when he started for both pans.  Bad approach and poor finish work.  LOL

SO: junk yards are full of old VW's which have pans in various states that will need modified for use with a buggy.  How you handle the serial numbers vary by state and what all is to be done. The newer the pan the more likely it will need a lot of repair.  Mexico Beetles from the 2000's are a nice source. 
Also you can build a complete pan from tube and sheet metal.   If going used look for a party selling used Beetle with bad engine but clean title and buy it strip body and non-needed parts sell them off and keep the rest.

It used to be you could also buy a brand new Mexico floor pan, but most suppliers are out of stock.  Some hard search on the internet might yield one still lurking out there.
By mark p 4106 Date 2014-08-11 22:50
Lots to think about , I'm leaning towards a nostalgia chassis so not sure what the process will be getting it titled but I could just throw all the parts from mine onto a nice chassis from them but the numbers and title is the issue
Being new to the USA and VWs I'm just not sure what to do as there also seems to be a problem with the numbers on this chassis I have ..... I can't find one lol dammmmmmm

So I'm just not sure where to go from here
By Ron S 3875 Date 2014-08-12 15:06
If your not seeing the number then it is likely that when the shortened the pan for the buggy they made the cut in wrong area and essentially cut them out.  So for titling likely using a body tag. 
If you buy a pan that already has a title then you can use that title and merge the old with the new. 
If you buy a pan untitled then make sure it is a clear VIN for use.

I always go to the web site and run numbers before I buy.

Again depending on your state laws will determine how you approach the old VIN / new VIN effort.
We have here in Arizona third party VIN service sites that are very friendly (compared to state run) and are very happy to site down and work out best approaches for VIN title efforts as to best approach and cost.
If your state has that use them if not you will have to deal with the sate DMV and ask them for help on how to approach  before you start any action.

I deal a lot with vintage cars that have no title history and have found that there is a way for any thing to work out as long as the VIN is clear (not stolen)
By Lloyd B 2301 Date 2014-08-12 15:11
Mark, first thing is check DMV in Florida to see what they have to say(check web site first)  Perhaps you may have to have an assigned vin number, as if you built it all from parts.  Your vin should be on the tunnel towards the back of the chassis(right on top I think)  If you find it, check to make sure that it matches your title.    You might have to look for a complete bug further in away from the "salt", as long as it has a valid title and can be registered in Florida, you should be ok,  JUST make sure to check Florida laws.  Just my thoughts.
By mark p 4106 Date 2014-08-12 22:07 Edited 2014-08-12 22:56
I will look into it more if I have to buy a new chassis then I will just get it inspected and a new title as if I built it myself at east I know it will be a good build and also will have another look for the numbers on the chassis will let you know what happens
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