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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
SORRY EVERYONE - SOME OF THE PICTURES IN THIS THREAD ARE MISSING, I'M VERY ANNOYED THAT I DIDN'T BACK UP AND TRUSTED AN ONLINE SERVICE.

I have tried to reinstate where possible.

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I thought I'd start a thread on the progress of converting my new van. I think it's going to be really slow as I spent all my money buying her and have to save for a big holiday next summer. Anyway, I'll update what I can and if anyone has any comments/advice etc, I'd really appreciate it.

So here's the van, it's a 1.9td on a Y plate (2001). I bought it yesterday and drove from Manchester to Bristol without any issue, although she doesn't seem too happy over 65mph. Anyway, 190 miles or so only used about £20 of diesel, so I'm very happy with that.



After collecting her, me and the gf were chatting about what to call her, because she's green Grotbags was suggested (after the 80's TV witch, google if it you're too young to remember). I tried and tried to find a different name but unfortunately Grotbags has stuck.

Anyway, the exterior is pretty much perfect, definitely nothing for immediate concern anyway. However the interior isn't quite as great. It's an ex carpenter's van so there's a lot of dust & debris. First thing was to take the lining off around the tailgate clasp. I was greeted with a sawdust cake covering quite a bit of surface rust around the clasp itself:



I also pulled up the floor matting, the floor is in really good condition paint wise, but here was old nails, screws, loads more sawdust and this rubbery black gunk that was sticking the floor mat down. I spent the afternoon today cleaning it and trying to peel off the gunk.



I've also ordered some interior light covers from VW heritage. There's a badly taped wire between both rear light fittings, I've no idea what it's for. If anyone is an electrical specialist and based in Bristol, there's a pint/all the tea you can drink in it for you if you can come figure it out.
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
So next up I took the ply lining off one side to discover some rather odd insulation. I think whoever did it worked in a hospital as there is bandaging across a lot of the metalwork and Dumfries & Galloway Health Services tape over all the holes!





So I pulled it all out and the walls look great, nothing to do there. Then I carried on with clearing out the floor and fired up the angle grinder to strip back the rusty spots.






I put some kurust over all the grinded bits, it pretty much all turned black so I guess I'd left plenty of rust in play! Anyway, I feel good about having treated it.

I also found a spot behind the driver's seat, a little matrix of holes in the floor.

PHOTO MISSING - SORRY


I've tidied it up and ground it down. Does anyone know if it's standard? I'm tempted to put some fibreglass in there to close it up as I'm going to do 6 other holes in the floor. When I'm driving, there's loads of road noise and I'd like to cut that out if possible. If anyone is reading this and thinks I should leave the holes open, please do say!

Next step is putting on Primer. I need to find the paint in the right colour, according to the manual, it's LL6T (Friesengruen). Has anyone tried this paint or have any suggestions of a good place to buy the right paint?
 

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Hi mate. Nice blank canvas there.

Only thing i can think those hole would be for is maybe for a gas drop out vent once upon a time perhaps?

No idea what all the holes are in the sliding door step though..?
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Slow progress but I've been gradually tidying the van. Stripped out the front seats and floor mat over the weekend as well as painting the side step and rear step.



I also took the runner off the sliding door, I think it's borked:



I cleaned all the grease out of the sliding tray but I messed up and bought the wrong side door runner so now I'm waiting on the correct one before I can drive anywhere. That was quite frustrating :(

Whoever had cut the bulkhead out in the past had done a pretty rubbish job, so after stripping out the seats and floor mat, I started cutting the spare bits of metal out and touching up with hammerite smooth.

some bulkhead offcut (there were many more):



Cleaned out the cab and touched up the bare metal from the bulkhead bits.

Then it was time to clean the floor mat for the cab. Here she is in her former misery and after a quick treatment with some degreaser and Plasti-kote she now looks like this:



I'm very happy with the Plasti-kote finish, really up for getting more and doing the dash and door cards now.

Next purchase will be a nice floor carpet when I've got some money again (buying the van cleaned me out).

Tomorrow I'm taking her to the garage for a once over as the clutch feels a little funny, fingers crossed it's nothing too alarming.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Things have slowed slightly. It's going into Luckwell Garage next week for a new clutch and cambelt so I'm going to be well and truly skint, but at least I'll have faith in the van for long trips etc.

No new pics but I hammerited the sliding door runner tray and fitted the correct runner in the dark, one handed (the other was holding the door), it was eventful and there was certainly lots of swearing but it's in now and rolls well, no more grinding metal.

Put the cab back together and it looks great with the nice clean mat. Really want to get a MVM carpet - does anyone have the green & black trim on theirs? If so, could you post a photo?

Unfortunately the garage bill will limit what I can buy for insulating etc so this will be a very slow progress from here on out. Going to take her out for a little uninsulated camp next weekend with an air bed, should be the start of the fun!
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Started doing some flashbanding in the back after hammeriting the scuffs on the wheel arches, got the stuff from toolstation for £5.95 per roll, goes on great! Just need to save up for a window in the slider.





Please excuse the mess I:

Then I cleaned and started polishing. The roof, tailgate and bonnet were really flat and dull so I started on the roof. Here it is half polished, you can see the difference (the far side is the non-polished side):



New clutch on Wednesday so I've barely driven her anywhere in the past week.

On the picture of the roof, you can see the sunroof surround is really worn and peeling, does anyone know how to restore it?
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
I got her back from the garage on Wednesday last week with a new clutch and cambelt, however they found a leak in the diesel pump so she's still been sat outside the house going nowhere. Back into the garage on Wednesday for the diesel pump investigation, I really hope that's the last of it. It's blown my conversion budget so insulation will have to wait a bit I think.

Anyway, while she was stood I decided to renovate the door cards. I started with this:



After a good run over with sugar soap then some heavy degreaser and a couple of coats of plasti-kote, they now look like this (and I'm, absolutely delighted!):



Inside the drivers door, the bagged insulation had loads of water inside so I've pierced the bottom so it can drain through the holes in the bottom of the door, hopefully it'll dry out.



My sunroof has also been leaking so tonight I'm going to investigate that. I think something is leaking in the cab too as I'm getting little puddles in the footwell, I've cleaned all the seals but I understand there might be a drainage tube going from the sunroof and down the A-pillar so the two leaks might be related.

Anyway, I'm hoping to be back on the road and leak free by Thursday so I can finally take her out for a little trip this weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Since going to the garage, the fuel leak seems sorted so I took Grotbags for a weekend trip down to Exmoor. There was no insulation in the van and the temperature got down to around 5 degrees, it was very cold but a beautiful.





After freezing our t1ts off, first stop was B&Q for some insulation.



I've done the standard silver bubble wrap and recycled bottle insulation on the main walls, still need to cover all the holes etc. I decided to put insulation into some of the beams and stuff, everything sounds so solid now. When I shut the tailgate it makes a lovely thud.

If anyone's interested, so far I've used 4 rolls of tape (50m per roll), 4 rolls of bubble wrap and 2.5 rolls of recycled bottle insulation. I reckon I'll have used 5 rolls of tape by the time I'm fully finished covering all the holes.







After completing that, I went shopping for some plywood and recut the lining from the old, tired panels that I got with the van. I buggered up the simplest one so need to go back for another sheet and some ply for the floor. Sucks that I can't make the floor out of one piece of ply (without spending a fortune at the timber yard). Little tip, I got 3.6mm ply panels in really good condition from the local timber yard for £9 per sheet (8x4 sheets) instead of the £14 odd quid from the DIY stores.





Next is to reinstall the panels but I'm a bit apprehensive, if anyone is reading this, do you know if I can just get a particular screw and use my drill to screw it straight into the metalwork? I assume it needs to be made of stainless steel? Or do I need to drill pilot holes first and then screw into them?
 

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I just used 10mm woodscrews and it was ok. It's tough around the wheel arch as the metal is double skinned. Same around the edges on the doors in the locks area!
 

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Since going to the garage, the fuel leak seems sorted so I took Grotbags for a weekend trip down to Exmoor. There was no insulation in the van and the temperature got down to around 5 degrees, it was very cold but a beautiful.





After freezing our t1ts off, first stop was B&Q for some insulation.



I've done the standard silver bubble wrap and recycled bottle insulation on the main walls, still need to cover all the holes etc. I decided to put insulation into some of the beams and stuff, everything sounds so solid now. When I shut the tailgate it makes a lovely thud.

If anyone's interested, so far I've used 4 rolls of tape (50m per roll), 4 rolls of bubble wrap and 2.5 rolls of recycled bottle insulation. I reckon I'll have used 5 rolls of tape by the time I'm fully finished covering all the holes.



After completing that, I went shopping for some plywood and recut the lining from the old, tired panels that I got with the van. I buggered up the simplest one so need to go back for another sheet and some ply for the floor. Sucks that I can't make the floor out of one piece of ply (without spending a fortune at the timber yard). Little tip, I got 3.6mm ply panels in really good condition from the local timber yard for £9 per sheet (8x4 sheets) instead of the £14 odd quid from the DIY stores.



Next is to reinstall the panels but I'm a bit apprehensive, if anyone is reading this, do you know if I can just get a particular screw and use my drill to screw it straight into the metalwork? I assume it needs to be made of stainless steel? Or do I need to drill pilot holes first and then screw into them?
You can get self tapping metal screws but I always pilot drill 1st with a slightly smaller bit.
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
Slow progress lately as the evenings have been drawing in and the other half insists that I have a life.

Anyway, I've been working on the floor a bit before I put the walls on. So I painstakingly cut out the floor template from 9mm ply using the original floor mat that came with the van.



I'm pretty pleased with that but because I used quite thin ply, I figured I'd need quite a few battens (batons?) to support it, so I cut a bunch out and used Sikaflex to bond them to the floor. I just glued them on the peaks of the floor ribs but I was quite generous, I hope it's enough. I suppose even if it does come unstuck the weight of what's in the van will keep it pretty secure.

In between each batten, I cut some of the remaining bubble wrap stuff.



Then after that I cut out some of the recycled bottle insulation to fit between the gaps. I'm hoping it'll stay dry, if not I guess I'll have to go back to the drawing board.

I'm also hoping that it will stay compressed enough and not make the ply floor bulge between the battens.


I broke the other half's scissors :eek:

Final jobs before it all gets put in place is to put a few more bits of ply under the edges of the battens where they're off the ground around the step, then screw it all in.

My mum is having her carpet replaced (no merkin gags please) and has very kindly got me a 3x2m piece in good condition to cover the ply, trouble is that it's beige so as soon as it rains, it'll get borked. Funds are tight so £50 odd on vinyl might have to wait for pay day.

More after the weekend...
 

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Hi man.

Your doing pretty much exactly what i did with the floor. Before laying the ply i used foil tape to help keep it all in place. Obviously not needed but i thought why not as i had lots of the stuff.

Its on page 1 of my build. Few threads below.

Looking good so far.

Got some rear springs going beggin in the shed if you want some slam action for nothin T:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Hi man.

Your doing pretty much exactly what i did with the floor. Before laying the ply i used foil tape to help keep it all in place. Obviously not needed but i thought why not as i had lots of the stuff.

Its on page 1 of my build. Few threads below.

Looking good so far.

Got some rear springs going beggin in the shed if you want some slam action for nothin T:
Thanks mate, what a star you are! I'll take you up on that if it's a real offer?

I can't get the pictures to load on that page of your thread right now but I think it's my work pc being weird. Where did you use the tape, between each batten?
 

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I covered the lot, battens, insulation everything. You could see and insulation or wood when it was done.

Yes im unable to see them either. I think its a problem with photobucket on my end. Must sort it.

N sure there yours if you wanna come get them. There 50-60mm drop unsure of the brand. But theres nothing wrong with them.

Send me a pm and we could sort summin out.T:
 
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