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Old 02-02-2012, 06:37 PM
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Door Repair - Frankenstein Style - V8 Beetle Update!

Hey Guys Its been a little while since I had time to work on the V8 Convertible Beetle Project but I was finally able to get a few hours out in the garage. Next I wanted to start working on the doors, the bottoms were rusted out of them and the lower hinges were locked up, etc.

Below are a few pictures from my last update, but you can see the rest of the pictures on my website at:

Next I wanted to repair the doors for the bug. The bottoms of the doors are rusted out pretty badly, and I don't have the money to get a good set of doors for the car. So instead I'm planning a little Frankenstein surgery to fix them. Here I have the drivers side door all stripped down to just the door itself.

I don't have any extra convertible doors, but I do have a few 1968-1969 hard top doors, and two of them are in GREAT shape. As you can see the inside panel of the doors are different, but the outside of the doors are the same except for the top of the door. Being that the bottoms are the only thing rusted out of my convertible doors I'll be able to repair them.

So next I very carefully laid out the lines where I wanted to cut both doors. I had to be sure I wasn't going to cut too much out and make the doors shorter, and it would also be a pain in the butt if I didn't cut enough out and made them longer and I had to keep trimming them. I highlighted my lines in red to make it easier to see what I was doing.

Next I carefully marked out the outside of the doors, again I highlighted my line in red. I wanted to espeacially be carefull on the outside of the door, as I didn't want to have to fill in any gaps from cutting out too much metal.

And here is the inside of the doors after I cut them apart.

All the carefull measuring and cutting really paid of, the two halfs fit together almost perfectly. I just had to trim a bit here and there to get a perfect fit!

Then I put a couple clamps on it so I could stand the door up and get a good look at both sides of it. I think so far it has turned out real nice, of course the cutting was the easy part..... Now I just have to be sure I don't work the crap out of it welding it back together....

I was going to clean the paint off of the joint and go ahead and weld it up, but I noticed a couple places inside the door where there was a bit of surface rust, that I could only see and get to with the door cut up. So I'll be taking the door to work and cleaning those spots up with the glass bead blaster. Then I'll spray some epoxy primer on the insides....... Then it will be onto welding them back together again. I'll be sure to make small tacks in various spots to help control the warpage. Then I'll mix up some homemade epoxy filler and smooth everything out before epoxy priming the door........ etc.............

Thanks for looking!

Zach B

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