Welcome to Air monkeys Hi and welcome to the first issue of Air Monkeys. The first
The Air Monkeys Crew: Joe EynonEditor, Writer, Photographer
question we should answer is why does the VW community need another magazine? We hope to be able to answer that question in the pages that follow this spiel. If not, the basic principle of the magazine is simple. Air Monkeys does not only hope to cover interesting cars and new parts for your VW’s. It wants to bring together subjects from other scenes. We will endeavour to focus on Cars, Shows, Alternative Music, Extreme Sports, Alternative Fashions, Surf Culture, Tattoos, Art, Road trips and Outdoor Living. Plus we’ll chuck anything else into the mix that you might be interested in. Air Monkeys is created by friends who have come together to create something different. The best part is it’s free to read!
Edd ThorpeWriter, Contributor Martin CoxEvents Organiser, Contributor Samantha EynonWriter, Graphic designer, Illustrator, Photographer Richard ThorpeWriter, Photographer Lauren WhiteContributor, Administrator Charlotte AthertonContributor
The current air monkeys fleet
Whatâ€™s inside? Regular Features Spanked! Cool Sh*t Technical Focus
The Volksworld Show
Preserved to perfection
Low and Slow
Words and Pictures by Joe Eynon
DUBFREEZE 2011 Sunday 20th Febuary 2011
During the weeks leading up to this
year’s season opener at Stafford County Showground everyone was hoping the weather was going to be kinder than it was in 2010. In 2010 everyone awoke with a few inches of snow on the ground in freezing temperatures. This included the brave, if not a little crazy, campers. (In fact Edd Thorpe stayed in his tent!) This year though was much kinder. We awoke early on the Sunday morning and drove in a small convoy in the crisp winter sunshine. A few other Volkswagens were seen on the way there but as we approached I had no idea how busy the show would be. The show consists of three main parts. The first part is a small show and shine with a collection of air-cooled and watercooled VW’s. The show is open to all VAG vehicles but rarely attracts Audis, Seats or Porsches. The second part is a large indoor sales area with a small swapmeet and most of the major UK trade companies including Karmann Konnection, Custom and Commercial and Just Kampers. The third part is a vast array of Volkswagens parked up outside the show hall in the ‘For Sale’ areas. The show and shine was attended by some very interesting VW’s including Dean Bradley’s Citrus Valley Showground bus and The Low n Slow V-dub Club were there in force.
Jamie Mellish’s Karmann Ghia
The show and shine was broken down into stock and modified classes with the modified Volkswagens outnumbered the stock ones. This year seemed to attract a host of super slammed early beetles, which everyone was more than happy to look at! Jamie Mellish’s red Karmann Ghia was also a big hit with the show visitors. The trade areas and auto-jumble managed to keep the attendees busy after they paid their £10 entrance fee. All the major players in the aftermarket parts industry were there and all were willing to help you part company with your hard earned cash, in exchange for new shiny parts.
< Attendance numbers seemed high this year and at some points the trade areas were overwhelmed with punters> In my opinion the best part of the show was the ‘Vehicles For Sale’ area. The prebooked cars all arrived super early and lined up in front of the show hall. Everyone who was entering the show had to walk past them. A few bargains were available including an original squareback for £4250 and a Jeans edition bug for £3000, both with fresh tickets ready to be driven home that very day! Attendance numbers seemed high this year and at some points the trade areas were overwhelmed with punters. This was great for the organisers, as the weather in previous years has put visitors off from coming. By mid afternoon the show hall began to empty and the last of the bargains disappeared. Friends old and new wished each other a safe drive home and everyone was looking forward to the new season. Dubfreeze does exactly what it needs to do. It whets everyone’s appetite for hopefully a thrilling season of shows, bbq’s, parties and VW’s! It may not be the most exciting show but it gets the ball rolling and everyone leaves focused on the rest of the year.
Low & Slow V-Dub Club
O.g. Squareback in the For Sale area
The Dogs N Dubs Logo and Cargo
The show in pictures
Bingley Hall full to the rafters
Air Monkey Edd Thorpeâ€™s 67 Bug
Tempo Matador For Sale!
German Look Late Beetle
Early Bays in the Show & Shine Hall
356 making a visit
Plenty to see outside too Citrus Valley Showground Bus
Sweet Deluxe Panel Van
Wouldnâ€™t be a VW show without some coolers!
Plenty of custom work to be seen
The Small Stakes
This book is a fine collection of posters designed by Jason Munn. He has created posters for a vast array of awesome bands, including Death Cab for Cutie, The Decemberists, Nada Surf, Mogwai and Modest Mouse. His work is simple but stunning and uses the ever popular technique of screen printing. It’s a great book for your coffee table.
Storm Kettle The ‘Storm Kettle®’ is a formidably efficient, portable device for boiling water outdoors using twigs and other natural combustible materials. The kettle consists of a water jacket surrounding a shielded fire chamber which creates an upward chimney draft ensuring efficient and rapid boiling even in wet and windy conditions. Perfect for shows!
Loose-Fit Surf Loose-Fit are a company based in North Devon, UK who specialise in locating and importing the best surf hardware in the world. The really do have some immense equipment for sale.
Weiner Dogs are Cute tee. Cute, colouful and funny, what more could you ask for from a t-shirt? Available from Sick for Cute www.sickforcute.com $16 (shipping worldwide)
Samantha Eynon (littlegamgee)
Our very own Samantha Eynon is an international selling illustrator and artist. She is well known for her cute and colourful prints but has recently branched into the retro world, creating images like the ones featured here. www.samanthaeynon.com
Not a great deal to say about Beakers Blog except its a collection of some of the best photographs from the VW scene. Ran by an enthusiast for you to enjoy.
Technical Focus Transporterhaus Baywindow Dropped Spindles Transporterhaus now are manufacturing dropped spindles for all baywindows. These are fitted on Joe and Samâ€™s own 69 Bay. Very easy to fit and Transporterhaus can supply everything needed to complete the job including an adjustable trackrod and eccentric camber nuts. Providing your bus with a 3 and 1/2 inch drop with no reduction in suspension travel. Price for outright purchase ÂŁ579 www.transporterhaus.de
MCJ Products MCJ Imports are now making their own range of high quality accessories and replacement parts for aircooled vehicles. These include dash controls, door handles and steering wheels. Made from high grade billet alluminium they are very strong and when polished they look fantastic. Their steering wheels come on a range of finishes and also come in a 17inch size to fit buses. www.mcjimports.co.uk
Midland Early Bay Steering Rack Conversion This is a excellent development in steering technology made by Midland Early bay in conjunction with Jimmy & Ellie at Valley Gas Speedshop. The rack is easily welding onto the chassis and uses the additional steering box holes. An additional pick up attaches to the diagonal chassis member under the cab floor although additional work would be required if you own a pre 1970 bus. Midland Early Bay had a display model rigged up with the set-up at last years Vanfest and it got a very good reception from Early Bay owners. Late Bay Owners- do not dispare, a steering rack conversion is currently in production for you. Watch this space!
Mr Whitewalls With the VW world and American car scene merging more and more everyday its only right that people should be able to get some proper white-wall tyres. Normal whitewall tyres cost a bomb and the white vinyl bands come off every few miles. Mr Whitewalls uses high quality paint imported from the states. It doesnâ€™t fade or discolour. The can perform the job at your house and the wheels do not even have to be off your vehicle. Also they dont just do white-walls. They also do red-walls, yellow-walls, blue-walls etc etc etc........
Prices start at ÂŁ950 exc VAT and fitting
Volksworld Show 2011 March 25th-27th 2011
Words by Samantha Eynon Pictures by Joe Eynon
Despite having had our camper ‘Rhubarb’ for 4 years this was the first time we had made it to the annual Volksworld Show. The weather report was looking promising and we packed up looking forward to a great weekend. Rhubarb did a sterling job getting us there and back although he didn’t enjoy the M25 rush hour traffic; neither did we for that matter! We did struggle finding the right entrance, due to the distinct lack of signage, and were relieved to find that initially we had come in through the trade entrance, as there were not many vehicles about! We teamed up with a ’08 Danbury camper in our quest to find the weekend camping area and after a 20 minute search, with help from the locals, we were in! As ever there was a great array of vehicles in the camping area- including a Jurgen Auto Villa, a Ford Transit posing as a VW and a good many brave souls in tents! After pitching up- which for us entailed sorting out the chocks and having a beer- we wandered into Esher to see that is had been overtaken by fellow VW fans, all donning our camping wristbands. It was great sitting in the beer garden at The Bear and watching and hearing all the VW’s passing through.
Saturday morning saw some cracking bacon sandwiches and the opening of the show, which this year was celebrating 50 years of the Type 3; which excited us greatly as we hanker after a squareback. There were unsurprisingly many stunning examples including Wayne Colley’s Notch, Boris Schmidt’s Squareback and the best in show winner Peter Köhmann’s CSP razoredge. The cover star of issue 4 of Airmighty ; Richard Krom’s early ’55 ragtop beetle was there too glistening under the Type 3 rotaing display stand show lights. Richard has such attention to detail that he has shaved the writing off the tyres! Another site to behold was the drivable Radio flyer- I would have loved to have seen that in action! One of my favourite vehicles of the weekend was the split ice cream bus; a beautiful specimen of a splitscreen with a lovely paintjob, which also sold icecream….. Winner! The Volksworld show wouldn’t be Best of Show 2011 complete without an attempt to pile as many people into and onto a beetle as possible. This years ‘Bug Stuff” sponsored by Mega Bug, managed 79 which is pretty impressive! Many of Europes best VW clubs use the show to meet up and start the year in style. These clubs included The Splitscreen Van Club, Earlybay.com, Latebay.com, the Type 3 and 4 club, KGOC, B49ERS and Adolfs Angels. Its great to be able to get up close and personal with cars and chat to their Custom slammed panel owners. Trade was immense this year with all the major players throughout Europe making the trip to sell their wears. Large international companies such as CSP, VW Heritage and T2D mingled with small independent stores such as Wubs Dubs and Odd Ball Imports If you needed new shoes or a fresh t-shirt during the weekend then someone could help you out. Mambo, Lava Lifestyle and many other clothing stores were present. VW Heritage announced during the weekend that they would be working with VW Classic Parts in Germany to import quality classic parts for our classic VW’s. This will enable people to easily get top quality parts for their rare models during a restoration without having
to get the parts imported. Many stores had demonstrations over the weekend. One of these was for the Beugler pin-striping kit. It was great to watch a master at work as it gave a lot of people some inspiration.
All years of beetle on display
More varients outside
The best part of the weekend for many people though is the swapmeet organised by Karmann Konnection. A whole room is dedicated to traders from all over the globe to come and sell the rarest of the rare. Original speedometres, steering wheels, bulbs, chrome trims, hub cabs, door mechanisms and glass were a few of the things getting people very excited. It was our first ever Volkworld Show but it certainly will not be our last. The weekend has everything. Great cars, indoor and outdoor displays, superb camping, brilliant company and all the trade you could ever have! In short weâ€™ll be back next year for more! Thanks to the Volksworld guys and girls for putting on an awesome weekend, The Bear in Esher for being to hospitable, and Toby Walker for the Friday night drinks.
The HebRod drew the crowds in.
Karmann Konnection’s Famous Swap-Meet
The Bug Stuff
Did you get an ice cream? We did!
Ben Coate’s Ghia
Teardrop Trailer and Custom Trailer Manufacturer
Words by Edd Thorpe Photos by Diddyvans
For those looking for a practical addition to their camper without sacrifice, Nigel of Diddyvans has come up trumps! “The Diddyvans teardrop trailer is perfect for camping in vintage style. The sleeping compartment is cosy and dry and is instantly accessible once you’ve parked up. The kitchen area, if you choose to have one, is accessed from the rear of the teardrop and, depending on the options you choose, can have a single shelf or a complete kitchen hidden under the hatch.” Each Tear Drop Trailer is custom designed to your specifications, and when I visited the shop, there were 3 trailers being worked on. One being the ‘shop’ trailer, a fantastic exhibition of their handiwork – I think you’ll agree! This features aluminium cladding, which reflects (no pun intended!) the style of the highly desirable (and priced) 50’s American Airstream Trailers. Featuring lights used on a Ford Model B truck, the trailer has no shortage of examples of style and practicality united as one. It is this attention to detail that astounds me during the visit, although each trailer is based on the same shape and chassis- each trailer is unique, so a whole host of things have to be taken into account during the build process. It is at their Coventry based workshop that Nige shows off his enviable carpentry skills and flare for design, imagination and forward thinking. As Nige says: “Each trailer behaves slightly differently during the build, as curving the plywood to fit the shape can- if your not careful – result in splitting. Each section of plywood tends to want to split at different points, so special braces need to be applied to prevent any issues, and this is different trailer to trailer!” Check them out for yourself at: www.diddyvans.co.uk or add them on facebook under Diddyvans Teardrop Trailers
Words and Pictures by Joe Eynon
Buster always wanted a split-screen campervan. His parents were never big fans but after years of enjoying camping with the scouts he knew he enjoyed the outdoor lifestyle. He knew a split-screen campervan would give him what he wanted plus he thought he would look cool driving one! After a number of years working on his friend’s VW’s he took the plunge that we’ve all done before, he purchased his first VW. It was a RHD 67 Kombi in yellow and white. He used this bus for around 18 months by going camping, surfing, climbing and visiting shows in it. In this time though his ideas of his perfect bus changed. After seeing all the Rat Look buses at the shows he knew he had to have one. That’s what is so great about the VW scene, there are so many different styles and types of Volkswagen for people to enjoy . The search began for the bus your looking at today eight months before money was exchanged. Buster wanted an earlier bus. This allowed him to have all this things his 67 was missing, such as, a full length bench seat, ice pick door handles, high hinge cargo doors, small lights, dash clock and deluxe trim. This is quite a list to get checked off when looking for a new vehicle but the desired bus was found. It had been rescued from a scrap yard in Alabama a few months prior by MCJ Imports in Oxford. It had dents and scrapes from a previous crash and no engine but was perfect for Buster! His friends thought he had lost the plot when he showed them the photographs, but Buster knew the potential it had so a deal was struck and the bus started a new journey in its eventful life. The ratty 1959 15-window bus did have some great points though. It still had all its deluxe trim and the interior bright work was all in place including the coat hooks, all 6 long spoon window latched and the US spec bumper trim. When the bus arrived in North Wales it was clear Buster had a lot of work in front of him. The bus had no floors, massive holes in the front wheel arches and dents in nearly every panel that made it reminiscent of a lunar landscape! The dash had been hacked apart and the engine was missing. This was a project that would turn into a baptism of fire for Buster who prior to this bus had no restoration experience and didn’t know how to MIG weld and had never painted before. Although he had massive obstacles to overcome Buster still set himself a deadline of 8 months! This would allow the bus to be debuted at All Types Show at Bodelwydden.
No time was wasted in getting the project underway. Buster was keen so the bus was stripped and put on a roller to commence the welding. Starting with the chassis Buster taught himself the necessary skills. Four of the six outriggers, top hat sections and the I-beam were all repaired to allow the bus to be structurally strong again. Next was the cargo floor. The entire floor had to be replaced so Buster took the opportunity to raise the steering box by 48mm. This lift was vital to the finished article. Over the next few monthsâ€™ new panels were ordered from Klassic Fab and the rotten metal was replaced with new quality steel. This included front arches, front close in panels, front lower valence, inner and outer sills on both sides. The long side panel was where some accident damage was and was six inches deep in filler, so new B and C posts were fitted and the panel straightened. New rear arches and rear corners were fitted up to the air intake vents and the new battery trays were matched up to them. A lot of distortion occurred in the rear corners so a friend, Mr. Steve, was called in. Mr. Steve has a lot of experience in panel beating, so fueled with tea he did his magic and set everything straight once again. A new dash was sourced and a correct year speedo was fitted. The new dashboard was required as someone butchered the old one when cutting out the speedo. Next was the turn of the shot blasters. Buster asked for the underneath, engine bay and floors to be blasted, but on inspection he found there had been a terrible mistake. The over eager shot blaster had removed the 50 year old paint from the rear corners. Busterâ€™s heart sank and after some frank discussions the bus was loaded back onto the trailer and brought home. Once extensively hovered out the paintwork could begin. As you can imagine only the best materials were used so the bare metal was given two coats of etch primer, 2K high build primer, then seam sealed around all the joints and welds. Stone-chip paint was then applied underneath the bus. Then a thick coat of 2K sealing wax red, (L53), was placed on top. With the help of Bryn the buses
paint finish was superb. The Christmas and New Year period was spent in the garage spraying and flatting back and spraying again. Bryn was a perfectionist so even the underneath was pristine. With the underneath and interior sprayed it was time to ask Mr. Steve to return to help Buster get the exterior looking as good. The bus took 4 nights of hard work to get the welds and new dents from the panel beating ironed out. Mr. Steve was, however, asked to leave the original dents. Bryn then came back to help spray the exterior. The colour-matched cellulose gave a really deep shine to the body, and once attacked with a 600 grade rubbing block it reclaimed its faded paint once again. Now the bus was looking great it was time for the parts list to be purchased. At the time of the build the dollar was weak so a 4” Narrowed bean with dropped spindles, adjusters, gas shocks and track-rods plus Willwood four pot discs bolted onto it was purchased from Franklin VW Werks. The rear of the bus has a Creative IRS set up with adjustable spring-plates turned down three notches. The bus is as low as it can go without being tubbed. The gearbox was also straight from the states coming direct from Rancho. Buster asked for a Rancho Pro Street custom box with bus flanges on rather than beetle ones. This would allow the CV’s to match at both ends of the driveshaft. A Kennedy Stage One clutch was also assembled. Flat 4 polished Fuchs were bolted around the Willwood discs and shrouded in Bridgestone rubber. 165/50/15 front and 185/55/15 rear. The stance was perfect and looked ready to be driven except for the lack of engine! A 1641cc was installed for a time, but after a while a bigger engine was wanted, so a 2007cc with twin Webber 44 IDF’s was built. Consisting of 78mm crank, 90.5 Mahle pistons and an Engle FK8 camshaft the bus was now ready for cruising. An external oil cooler with a remote filter head and an external 72 pate cooler with a fan was fitted and all connected with stainless braided hoses. With a stainless steel double tuck away box exhaust fitted it now looked and sounded immense. A Devon replica interior was installed in the rear with a number of hidden 12v sockets to keep things comfortable when camping. Madmatz flooring and carpets keep things warm and comfortable. The door cards and trim were covered in used hessian coffee bags giving the interior an individual touch. Dave at D.B. Trimming in Blackpool trimmed the front seats. Buster is determined to use the bus to its fullest. Once the work was completed and the motor was run in, the family set off for three weeks in Europe, covering 3500 miles. They toured the Swiss Alps, Atlantic swells and everywhere in between. Most people think that Ratty buses consist of lots of filler and are just about passing MOT’s every year. That may be the case for some but if so this bus bucks the trend. It’s a piece of art. The amount of work that has gone into making this once scrapped vehicle, maintain it’s character whilst making it safe, reliable and interesting, is amazing. This is a fully restored bus wearing a 52-year-old body and it looks amazing for it.
If you want some free advertising in Air Monkeys then emailairmonkeyvw@gmail. com
This Could Be You!
Music that has been doing the rounds at Airmonkeyâ€™s HQ Illustration by Samantha Eynon Words by Joe and Samantha Eynon
Foo Fighters Wasting Light Foo Fighters have returned to their roots with their latest album. Recorded in Dave Grohlâ€™s garage, Wasting Light is reminiscent of the post grunge outfits earliest work and is a long awaited return to form. Sounds like- Them Crooked Vultures, Incubus and Stone Temple Pilots Stand out track- White Limo Rating- 8.5/10
The Get Up Kids There Are Rules This is the first album from The Get Up Kids since their recent reformation. Its been seven years since Guilt Show and here they have gone for an experimental sound that is not as instantly catchy as previous albums. It takes a few listens to be appreciated but stick with it. Sounds like- Saves The Day, Hey Mercedes, The New Amsterdams Stand out track- Shatter Your Lungs Rating- 8.5/10
Fleet Foxes Helplessness Blues Fleet Foxes have returned with a follow up to their self titled debut album. They have not really tried to create a new or different sound but they really do not need to. There are not many folk-pop bands out there that create songs to get lost in as well as Fleet Foxes do. Sounds like- Bon Iver, Local Natives, The Tallest Man on Earth Stand out track- Someone Youâ€™d Admire Rating- 8.5 /10
Hellogoodbye Would It Kill You? After being dropped by their record label following moderate success with their first full length album, not many people would have expected them to return. Especially not with an album of such a high class. Gone are the over synthesized keyboards but their catchy and quirky lyrics have become stronger and cleverer. This is an unexpected self-released gem and shows what can be done without the backing of a record label. Sounds like- Fun., The Format, Motion City Soundtrack Stand out track- You Sleep Alone Rating- 9.5/10 The Decemberists The King Is Dead Oregon based folk band, The Decemberists, return with their sixth full length album. They show no sign of running out of ideas. With the number of folk bands increasing in the UK due to the popularity of the genre The Decemberists have done a fine job at showing them all how its done. They remain one of the best folk bands of the modern era. Sounds like- Kings of Convenience, Iron and Wine, The New Pornographer Stand out track- This Is Why We Fight Rating- 9/10
Words by Joe Eynon Photos by Marc Doyle
Marc Doyle, and his wife Bev, have two passions in life. In no particular order their first passion is their dogs, they have 10! They can be seen at most VW shows with at least one of them in tow. One of their dogs even has its own Facebook page. Their other passion, as you can imagine, is Volkswagens. Marc has owned a number of other air-cooled VW’s including a 2.0 litre Late Bay Deluxe and a 1968 Beetle. It is his older brother’s fault that Marc is infected with the Volkswagen disease. His brother’s first car was a Beetle and Marc has been hooked ever since. Marc and Bev have combined their two passions into their job. They own the clothing and accessory company Dogs N Dubs. This, as the title suggests, provides consumers with VW and Pooch related clothing, stickers and prints. If you have ever been to weekend shows such as Vanfest or Camper Jam then you will understand that Dogs and Dubs really do go hand in hand. The camper that graces our pages is a fully functioning utility vehicle which ferries the Dogs N Dubs stock from show to show in exquisite comfort. Marc purchased the twin sliding door panel van off Vzi in May 2010 and, after carrying out a lot of work, debuted the van at Dubfreeze in February 2011. As part of the deal when buying the van, it was agreed that the seller would complete the paintwork. It’s sprayed in Mango Green and off-white. One of Volkswagen’s greatest colour combinations. This allowed Marc to take delivery of a perfect blank canvas to put his stamp upon. Once he got his paws, (sorry bad joke), on his panel van he started the transformation. They wanted their panel van to be the perfect vehicle for their company and where most people would have opted for a T4 or a T5 I get the impression that Marc likes a challenge.
The van was lowered by about three inches by using adjustable spring-plates on the rear and by using Red 9 Design’s Twin Wishbone Coil-over Suspension conversion in place of the stock beam. This gives the van fantastic handling as it converts the van to rack and pinion steering. Spax shocks also help keep the van smooth and comfortable. Marc kept the standard disc and drum brake combination that the van left Wolfsburg with but placed over them 15 inch Fuch replica alloys and shrouded them in whitewall tyres from Mr. Whitewalls in Stafford. As mentioned before Marc and Bev wanted their VW to be a business tool as well as a pleasure vehicle. That’s why their engine choice was such a controversial decision. The decision was made to install a 2.0 litre water-cooled lump from a Subaru Forrester. A2B Auto Repairs carried out this work with help and advice from RJES. With a K&N filter fitted and a Bandit bike exhaust fitted the van now produces 125bhp at the flywheel. The exhaust is due to be changed though. A standard 6 rib 2.0 litre bay gearbox with RJES bell-housing is in situation to allow the van to cruise on the motorway in comfort. The interior is a masterpiece and was carried out by Nick Leatherbarrow at Sunset Campers. Fabricated out of light oak wood it has plenty of the home comforts required to make their stays at VW Festivals homely. It is all built around a Bluebird ¾ rock and roll bed and sat on laminate flooring. It has a really crisp and clean appearance plus is customised with a Dogs N Dubs logo on the rock and roll bed panel work. The entire trimming was done by the superb Bromsgrove Auto Trimmers except the front seats in the cab area that are from a Saab 9-5. In beige leather they again add to the comfort that the panel van gives.
< It is his older brotherâ€™s fault that Marc is infected with the Volkswagen disease > Accompanying the van, which Marc and Bev call â€˜Logoâ€™, around the country is a matching Westfalia Camping Box trailer, which is actually a converted hearse. It has been sprayed to match the van and fitted with some really neat accessories such as Mark One Escort bumpers and Harley Davidson lights on the fenders. The trailer is affectionately named Cargo as it hauls around all the Dogs N Dubs stock when trading at shows. Many people cringe at the idea of taking an air-cooled VW and placing non-VW parts in it but I have to disagree. I believe there is a time and a place for these types of conversion and this is one of these times. What Marc and Bev have achieved is very special. They are able to continue using a classic vehicle as their company ride but have updated and modernised it as necessary. The changes are subtle from the outside and it allows the observer to enjoy the classic designs of Volkswagen but it also allows the Dogs N Dubs fleet to arrive at shows in style and comfort.
< What Marc and Bev have achieved is very special > Marc would like to thank: Lee – My mechanic friend who did all the bits and pieces as and when needed. A2B Auto Repairs – The Subaru installation. Bromsgrove Auto Trimmers – The door cards, headlining and upholstery. Nick Leatherbarrow (Sunset Campers) – Bespoke wood interior. RJES – Subaru installation advice.
Ghia-head Jamie loves his ‘slammed 63’ – seems the judges do too! Words by Edd Thorpe. Pics by Jamie Mellish
I first saw this car on the way
into the Dubfreeze Show n Shine, while Jamie Mellish, the cars current owner, was applying the last of the polish to those detailed 15x5 Randars, incidentally wearing super skinny 125/60’s up front and 165’s out back. It was only walking round the car I got to take it all in – sure some may dismiss it as ‘another rat looker’ but how many other Ghias have you seen with this level of originality?
The California sunshine has certainly preserved this car, with the only remedial work being done stretching to the rear ‘pan halves and rear sills. Yep that’s it- after nigh on 50 years. That’s the original Ruby Red paintwork adorning the original body panels. Peering inside, the original seats still take pride of place, continuing the theme of preservation. One thing I do love about the car is its simplicity, the absence of cliché ‘lower than a stoat’s bollock’ stickers, preferring to let the stance do the talking. That stance is achieved by a 3 spline drop at the rear and the use of a 7(!!) inch narrowed, adjustable beam- built by ‘Detroit Johnny’ in the U.S, hooked up with dropped spindles to stock brakes. Not that this Ghia needs anything more than stock anchors, as this is more a cruiser than a strip beater, retaining a rebuilt period-style 1200cc 6v engine! Talking to Jamie, he is clearly an enthusiast who knows his car inside out, front to back. He has also managed to transfer his enthusiasm artistically, setting up JSM Graphics. “I particularly enjoy doing illustrations of VW’s. I am currently taking commissions, and examples of my work can be found on facebook” : www.facebook.com/jsm.graphics
Rear pop-outs are a great feature
This car looks great from every angle
It transpires that he took ownership of the car in its current guise, with the aforementioned work being carried out in 2009, having once unsuccessfully tried to add his name to the log book whilst still owning a bus. The car was already a regular on the show scene, where Jamie caught up with (stalked!) the successor to his claim – stating “if he was ever going to sell it to get in contact with me”. The rest as they say is history. Continuing the cars success- and adding further to the silverware, it was at the Dubfreeze show that Jamie took the “Wolfies Choice” award, sponsored by Wolfspeed Designs. In picking up this trophy, Jamie had to shift the 2 trophies picked up at VW Action 2010 (Top 20 Modified Daily Driver and Top Ghia) an other picked up at VW Players (2nd Best Aircooled) over. The first of these awards were collected within days of his new ownership! Some people choose to totally re-do their VW when they first get their hands on it, others continue where the previous owners left off, but put ‘their’ mark on it. Jamie, however, has left well alone, seeing as he fell in love with the car exactly as it was. “I may not have done any of the work to get it looking like it does, but I do look after it mechanically and it gets much more regular use than it appears to have since it has been in the UK.” If it aint broke, huh?
Jamie is clearly an enthusiast who knows his car inside out, front to back.
A round up of the top shows in Europe over the next few months. We will be attending some of them so look out for us and say Hi June 2011 2nd-5th. Treffen der Kaefernarren Jagstfeld, Germany www.kaefernarren-jagstfeld.de 3rd- 5th. Viva Skeg Vegas, Pine Trees Leisure Park, Skegness, UK www.vivaskegvegas.blogspot.com 4th- 5th. Dubs Mania, Weston Park, Shropshire, UK www.dubs-mania.co.uk 5th. Aircooled Swoop Inn, De Stok 24, Roosendaal, Netherlands. www.cnr.come2me.nl 5th. Retro VW Mania, Parking Makro Machelen, Belgium www.vwmania.org 10th- 12th. Deva Dubs n Rods, Shrewsbury Showground, UK www.devadubshow.co.uk 10th-12th. Bug Run, Mantorp Motorpark, Sweden www.bugrun.com 17th-19th. The Bus Stopover, Turnpost Farm, Leicestershire, UK www.thebusstopover.com
17th-19th. Beautiful Budel, Netherlands www.beautifulbudel.nl July 2011 1st- 3rd. European Bug-In, Chimay, Belgium www.europeanbugin.com 8th- 10th. Camper Jam, Weston Park, Shropshire, UK www.camperjam.com 8th- 10th. Peppercorn with special Vintage Sunday, Langley, Kent, UK 23rd. Aircooled Drive In, Horn, Netherlands www.busok.nl 31st. VW Action Lazy Sunday, Uttoxeter Racecourse, UK www.vwaction.co.uk August 2011 13th- 14th VW Festival, Harewood House, Leeds, UK www.vwfestival.co.uk 19th- 21st Scandinavian Cal-look Classic, Gardermoen, Oslo, Norway www.sccevent.com 26th- 29th Cornwall VW Jamboree, Stithians Showground, UK 28th VW Classics Meeting, Lier, Belgium www.vwclassicsclub.be
Stanford Hall 2011
words by Joe Eynon pictures by Joe and Sam Eynon
Stanford Hall VW Show is a yearly event hosted by the Leicestershire and Warwickshire VW Owners Club,
(LWVWOC). Set within the grounds of the historic Stanford Hall, built in the 1690’s, it provides one of the prettiest and most scenic shows on the calendar. It is a big ‘must do’ on the Air Monkeys calendar. This year the show was set on the 1st of May. We awoke early and met at Edd Thorpe’s house for the cruise to the show. It started off a reasonable small convoy, consisting of Martin Cox’s 66 Beetle, Edd Thorpe’s award winning 67 Beetle and The Eynon’s 69 Early Bay-window, but we soon encountered a large amount of other VW’s. Just outside Nuneaton we joined a convoy coming down the A5 from the north, which consisted of Splits, Bays, Bugs, Mark One Golf’s, New Beetles and Audis. This provided us with the perfect start to the day. The sun was starting to shine and we very excited about one of the best shows in Europe. Stanford Hall VW Show is famous for its Concours d’Elegance and always produces some of the best aircooled and water-cooled VAG vehicles from the UK. The show is open to all VAG vehicles but air-cooled Volkswagens mostly attend it. The super-class Concours d’Elegance was in the middle of the main field and Wayne Colley’s Notchback and Russ Dowson’s single cab splitscreen were looking amazing in the sunshine. The LWVWOC are a small local club in the heart of England but they achieve so much by organising such a superb show every year. The weather for this years show was a massive improvement on last years. In 2010 everyone was huddled together in his or her cars trying to keep warm from the bitter wind but this year could not of been more different. The sunshine was out in force and sunburn was a plenty! Perfect VW Show weather. The only downside to the fantastic run of British weather that preceded the show was the amount of dust that got blown around when the cars where entering the show. Once everyone had found his or her
spot though the dust calmed down. This year’s show was celebrating 50 years of the Type 3 and Danny Lord did an amazing job rallying all the Type 3 owners across the UK to attend. It was fantastic to see so many Type 3’s in one place. Danny Lord is a big name in the UK VW scene and can be seen at most shows supporting the Type 3 name in his red Notchback. Every year the LWVWOC club have the Historic Volkswagen Beetle display in pride of place outside the grand stately home. They form a semi-circle in front of the hall providing a brilliant focal point to the show. The display is open to all beetles and military Volkswagens built prior to 1957, which includes Oval Beetles, Split Window Beetles, Kubelwagens and Schwimmenwagens. There was none of the latter at this years show but there was plenty on early beetles and a couple of historic Kubelwagens in full military get up. Always great to see! Although the show was mainly Volkswagen related, Audi and Porsche were well represented by show entries and club stands. Early Porsche models were there aplenty with 356, 911, 912 and 914’s all making an appearance in the Concours d’Elegance. Audi was in force too with the Audi Quattro and Audi 80/90 clubs making it to the show. One of the most interesting clubs was the Audi Coupe club, which had three fantastic examples of this now very rare car, especially in the U.K. The Splitscreen Owners Club were there with a massive line up with around 200 vans. Everything from ratty barn finds to stock restos stood next to each other.
<Kubelwagens in full military get up. Always great to see!>
The show also is accompanied by a large trade area and swap meet. The main contenders where there as always such as, Karmann Konnection, Alan Schofield and Custom and Commerical but it was the small independent firms that made for interesting viewing such as Dogs N Dubs, Wubs Dubs, Fifty Six Delux and Time Travellers. The show also had a large â€˜For Saleâ€™ area, which was well attended this year. There was a few bargains to be had but as you can imagine the majority of the sales had over-inflated show prices attached to them.
<The sunshine was out in force and sunburn was a plenty!> At the end of the day when we were all slightly sunburnt we made our way home through the country roads and in the evening sunshine. We had an amazing day at Stanford Hall and will be making the trip again next year. The show is well organised and really enjoyable. The array of German machinery on display was brilliant and makes the early start to the day worth it. A lot of time and effort goes into organising a show like this and volunteers mainly do it. Well done all!
Keep a watchful eye on: www.facebook.com/airmonkeys and www.air-monkeys.tumblr.com for more information on the Air Monkeys cars and what weâ€™re up to. Thankyou for reading our first issue and we hope youâ€™ll be back for more.
Air Monkeys 2011