Swing Lever Attachment ('79)

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drober23
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Swing Lever Attachment ('79)

Post by drober23 » Sun Jul 23, 2017 7:03 am

Went to move the orange '79 this morning. Turned the steering wheel but the tires stayed put. Grrr... Although, it is a true blessing that it did this in my driveway as opposed to the alternatives.

Turns out the "bump" welded to the front axle beam where the swing lever attaches rusted off the beam. The beam itself seems pretty solid. None of the rust-through perforation you see up here in Michigan.

Does anyone have experience trying to repair this? It seems that you should be able to clean it up and weld it back on. But it also seems like if you don't get it just right things will never be the same.
DJ

'75 Westfalia, '79 Deluxe
(plus more busses than sense)

In a time of chimpanzees I was a monkey

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Re: Swing Lever Attachment ('79)

Post by Amskeptic » Sun Jul 23, 2017 8:55 am

drober23 wrote:
Sun Jul 23, 2017 7:03 am
Went to move the orange '79 this morning. Turned the steering wheel but the tires stayed put. Grrr... Although, it is a true blessing that it did this in my driveway as opposed to the alternatives.

Turns out the "bump" welded to the front axle beam where the swing lever attaches rusted off the beam. The beam itself seems pretty solid. None of the rust-through perforation you see up here in Michigan.

Does anyone have experience trying to repair this? It seems that you should be able to clean it up and weld it back on. But it also seems like if you don't get it just right things will never be the same.

Can you reuse the stamping that traps the center pin bore or is it rusted away thin? Check very carefully that the rest of the beam does not have some localized rust disaster lurking under. I do not suggest repair if the center pin bore stamping is eroded.
If all is good, you can clean it up and weld it back on. Note that it has a serious "caster angle". Clean all the metal surfaces to shiny but do not erode the break away points with your wire wheel or grinder. You need that evidence of exactly where the thing is supposed to reside and at what angle from vertical. Welding will screw the grease inside the tube, so lubricate well if you pull this off.
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 91 414 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,113 miles

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Re: Swing Lever Attachment ('79)

Post by drober23 » Sun Jul 23, 2017 9:47 am

I know the beam on my '75 is sketchy at best. Maybe I will get a dry beam and put it on the '79. Then, with the beam out, I can decide if it can be repaired or not. If I can repair it, it can move to the '75.

Things to think about.
DJ

'75 Westfalia, '79 Deluxe
(plus more busses than sense)

In a time of chimpanzees I was a monkey

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Re: Swing Lever Attachment ('79)

Post by sgkent » Sun Jul 23, 2017 10:54 am

drober23 wrote:
Sun Jul 23, 2017 9:47 am
I know the beam on my '75 is sketchy at best. Maybe I will get a dry beam and put it on the '79. Then, with the beam out, I can decide if it can be repaired or not. If I can repair it, it can move to the '75.

Things to think about.
you are on the right track and Colin is right on with his advice. My father taught me as a young man there are two things with a car that you get 100% correct when they are worked on, nothing less will do - the brakes and the steering. I'd look for a dry beam and get someone to help put it in. Thy are heavy and from what I understand they like to roll over coming out if not supported well.
Thank You -

Merlin The Wrench

Machine Work/Shop Recommendations: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/machinework.pdf

Pointers on rebuilding an engine: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/rebuilding_a_vw_engine.pdf

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Re: Swing Lever Attachment ('79)

Post by drober23 » Sun Jul 23, 2017 12:53 pm

Colin, SGKent, thanks for the good suggestions.

My father in law always used to grill me about any brake work I ever did. "Gotta stop before you can go!" he would say. I find myself repeating this a fair bit.

I've done a front beam before, but would like to avoid it if possible. It is heavy work. Gotta be smarter than the beam is all. I like to keep the wheels and tires on and roll them around as much as possible. Being a small guy has taught me not to try to muscle things too much.
DJ

'75 Westfalia, '79 Deluxe
(plus more busses than sense)

In a time of chimpanzees I was a monkey

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Re: Swing Lever Attachment ('79)

Post by sgkent » Sun Jul 23, 2017 6:16 pm

you'd think that with all the folks moving about on 8/21 that if you could find a beam maybe someone could bring it your way.
Thank You -

Merlin The Wrench

Machine Work/Shop Recommendations: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/machinework.pdf

Pointers on rebuilding an engine: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/rebuilding_a_vw_engine.pdf

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Re: Swing Lever Attachment ('79)

Post by drober23 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:39 am

I'll be one of them. We're taking the '75 Westfalia out west for the eclipse, then camping for a few days after. Plus, none of them are likely to be moving toward where I am.
DJ

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(plus more busses than sense)

In a time of chimpanzees I was a monkey

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Re: Swing Lever Attachment ('79)

Post by drober23 » Sat Sep 23, 2017 7:45 am

Beam doesn't look bad, outside of the rusted off knuckle.

Image

You can see that it is still connected at the top. This should make it relatively easy to line it up for repair.

Here is a view showing the bottom. I think there is enough metal left there to attempt a repair. It is a little thin around the ring that the pin goes through though.

Image
DJ

'75 Westfalia, '79 Deluxe
(plus more busses than sense)

In a time of chimpanzees I was a monkey

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Re: Swing Lever Attachment ('79)

Post by Amskeptic » Sat Sep 23, 2017 6:12 pm

Actually? It looks hideous.

The outside metal of the bushing "housing" may look sort of OK, but it tore, it TORE. Your photograph shows advanced rust rot inside the housing-to-tube area, therefore you need to carefully assess how much thinner that bushing housing is where none of us can see it at this time. It should not have torn. But it did. It has already announced that it lost integrity, I am guessing from advanced inner surface rust. Since it TORE, we are not dealing with just welding it back onto the tube (I have seen failures at the weld, but not tears), you would have to stitch up that skinny gauge housing metal to itself, I don't trust it.
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 91 414 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,113 miles

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Re: Swing Lever Attachment ('79)

Post by drober23 » Sun Sep 24, 2017 5:11 am

You are right Colin.

After I took the pictures I went under there with a screwdriver to clean out as much rust as I could. There was a lot of rust, and not much else.

I thought to myself, "What am I going to weld to what?" Then I came back in and read your post and felt a bit silly. It was, however, really easy to line up :-)
DJ

'75 Westfalia, '79 Deluxe
(plus more busses than sense)

In a time of chimpanzees I was a monkey

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