Hot VW's - December 2006 - Deputy's Driver
Proud owner of this body-off resto-customed '60 sunroof sedan is Dixon, California's Andrew Hendrix, Deputy Sheriff for Solano County
Besides model railroading, camping, fishing, and boating, 33-year old Andrew Hendrix still enjoys early Volkswagens, just like he did in high school, when he bought his first Bug at age 15. His latest project is the sanitary '60 featured here, and now that the car's finished, during his time-off from patrolling as a Deputy Sheriff, Andrew looks forward to taking his wife, Rebecca, and their daughters (Samantha, age 4, and Katherine, 2) for a cruise around their hometown of Dixon, California.
Would you believe that this Bug started out as a $200 purchase? That's a fact, and after bringing the sedan home, Andrew was determined to build this one right, and took four years to do it. The first year was spent restoring the chassis, the engine (2007cc) took-up the second year, body and paint was stage three, and year four was spent on the interior and final assembly.
Andrew took the car apart, and slowly but surely assembled all the refurbished pieces. After new floor pan halves were welded-in (also welded frame horn tabs for Gene Berg trans mid-mount), the bare pan went to Classic Powder Coating in Cordelia, California, where it received a Steel Gray baked-on powder. The the underside of the pan was sprayed with Line-X truck bedliner, thanks to Line-X Unlimited in nearby Vacaville. With the pan back home, Andrew installed a powdercoated CB Performance Adjustable Beam (with CB's drop spindles), fitted with powdercoated trailing arms and linkpin housings, chromed tie rods/ends, CB Performance Wide 5 Disc Brakes, Koni shocks and steering damper, powdercoated sway bar with stainless clamps, VW steering box, and a new '67-later dual-circuit master cylinder coated with POR-15 silver. By the way, all fasteners are either stainless steel, or paint detailed. In the rear went a Rancho Performance Transaxles "Pro Street Plus" tranny with Sway-A-Way axles, plus powdercoated Steel Gray spring plates, Koni shocks, and CB Performance Wide 5 Disc Brake assemblies (with all new hard lines and braided hoses). Bringing the plan to rolling status was as easy as bolting on a set of fully polished American Eagle aluminum wheels, Empi style 5-spokes (5.5 x 15), all tucked inside Michelin rubber, 145 radials for the front, and 205/70Rs out back.
Andrew and his friend Todd Labar also get credit for building the 2007cc power-plant, which is based on a Brazilian dual-relief case, now set up with full-flow oiling thanks to Gene Berg Enterprises. Internal moving parts consists of a Berg 78mm counterweighted, 8-doweled, and balanced crankshaft, refurbed stock VW connecting rods, Mahle 90.5mm pistons, Engle 110 cam with special Berg grind, Berg 26mm oil pump, and dual-port heads (40mm intakes, 37,5mm exhaust valves) that were semi-hemi-cut, and ported/polished at the Berg shop in Orange, California. Spark is supplied by a Bosch 009 Distributor, blue coil, and Bosch W8A spark plugs, air/fuel is inhaled and atomized thanks to a pair of Berg-prepped Weber 42 DCNF carbs (with Berg Linkage), and burnt gases exit by means of a ceramic coated Berg 1-1/2 inch merged header (for heater boxes) and dual quiet-pack muffler engine system. For more details of the engine and transaxle tricks, see the specs box.
Vacaville, California's Ed Martin and Dixon, California's Sean Pruitt both tackled the bodywork here, and when they got everything "straight" and prepped for paint, they handed the car over to Transportation Services, also in Vacaville. There, the TS crew sprayed on the DuPont ChromaBase in a nice blue, let it dry sufficiently, then sprayed on the DuPont clearcoats to finish the two stage system. A few weeks later, a color-sand and buff took place to bring about a mirror gloss.
Body stuff was next, so the trim was handled by Andrew and Todd, as they installed Wolfsburg West bumpers, new moldings, emblems, and handles, then installed all the windows (which were cut by Vaca Valley Glass) and rubber seals. For the interior, Andrew ordered vinyl door panels and matching brown/white-piped seat covers, plus headliner and carpet kit from Sewfine Interior Products of Littleton, Colorado. As soon as he received all the materials, Andrew took care of covering the seats, mounting the door panels, laying down the German square-weave oatmeal carpeting, and installing sunroof assembly, but left the mohair headliner install for Baker's Upholstry in nearby Fairfield. Hendrix also spiffed-up the interior with Flat-4 repro Empi GT steering wheel, Berg locking shifter, bud vase, Wolfsburg West seat belts, and an under-dash-mounted AutoMeter tachometer.
This sweeet sunroof sedan was a labor of love by all involved, and it shows with vasts amounts of attention to detail. So much so that at the 2004 Vallejo show, this resto-customed '60 took Best of Show, and followed by first in class at Sacramento's Bug-O-Rama #54 and then again at Bug-O-Rama #57 taking Best Air-Cooled Engine. Not only does this Bug look good, it runs greats, and drives like a champ, according to Andrew, who pays enormous thanks to his wife Rebecca for her help and total support of this four-year project, and Todd Labar who helped with final assembly, tuning of the engine, and road testing. As you can see, the waiting game is over, and the finished prouct is awesome!