The next step was to start removing the bolt-on bits and see taking a better look at the condition under the skin. The wheelarches all came off fairly easily, but then it was possible to see what they were hiding...
Not sure if there is supposed to be that much daylight visible through the sill.
|Things didn't get any better at the back, it looked fairly solid, but a bit of poking and prodding soon revealed rather large lumps of body filler which had been used to build up the wheel arch. This looks a bit beyond my ability / budget to repair properly.||
Having decided that a restoration of the car as it was would be too expensive, time consuming and above all pointless, It was time to start stripping Sparky of all his rusty 2-tone bodywork. I did consider puting all the bits I took off on eBay in the hope of getting some money back, and also hopefully passing them on to someone who would be able to use them but a quick look revealed hundreds of Beetle doors, windows and panels on the auction site.
The bonnet and engine cover were unbolted first, and both came off easily enough. The bonnet is, on closer inspection, knackered but the boot lid is in not bad condition.
Next all of the glass was removed. Given the perished state of the rubber holding the windows in this was easily accomplished with nothing more technical than a stanley knife.
After a bit of a fight one of the doors was removed, but the other resisted the available technology and will have to wait the arrival of an impact driver.
If nothing else this confirmed the rotten state of the drivers side door pillar and sills. The other side isn't so bad but the sill and heater channel was still shot as they look like they have been sorted previously.
Update - It later turned out the previous sorting involved welding the body to the floor and using a ton of body filler..... Nice
Finally Sparky was converted into a cabriolet. A hacksaw made short work of the pillars and the job was done.
|Given the age of the car I am amazed how (so far) none of the screws or bolts has been seized, and everything has come apart fairly easily. The other surprise is how solid, and bloody heavy, most of the bits are :)|