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1992 VW GTI Build Notes - 2006


5/6/2006
Click to EnlargeMy first weekend and I've got a lot of cleaning and pulling done. I've got the rear seats out (couple screws in the bottoms and pop 'em right out.) I've tossed a few parts that are irreparable including one of the plastic seat rails and the rear deck lid, which was sagging like a hammock into the dumpster.

I've started making my Pull-'n-Save list for all the small bits I'm missing. It's about two small notebook pages long, but includes details like new plugs for the rear hatch plastic trim, seat belt bolt covers (I'm still missing the front belts so I'm not driving her yet) as well as some big ones like some new front seats(the current one rocks a lot and doesn't really fit my 6'-7" body well), bumpers etc. I built a page Here with parts I'm missing if anyone can help, please Contact Me.

Progress:
· Clean Interior/Exterior
· Remove Rear Bench Seat
· Remove Rear Seat Belts
5/14/2006
Click to Enlarge I drove the Mk4 up to Estes Park yesterday and picked up a set of pretty nice Recaro Trophy seats. The only real problem is the driver side lower bolster, which is completely mashed and some scratches / cuts on the waist bolster. I'm planning on re-upholstering both front seats, rear seats, door cards and perhaps headliner anyway so the big thing is the seats themselves which KICK ASS. These things hold so much better than my Mk4 seats which do a pretty good job for OEM seats, but man. VW really hit it out of the park with these. I better not gain any weight though or I'm gonna need a jar of Vaseline and a shoe horn to get into these babies.

Removing the old seats was a piece of cake. I figured out what the "rocking" was in the old driver seat. The plastic sleeve that goes on the front mounting point had fallen off when whomever grabbed the original Monty seats out and put the red stripe GTI seats in... Oh well, at least the missing part was still in the car.

The Recaros have power bases, which i don't have power plugs for. I needed to get these things ALL the way down to assist in my fitting so i had to pull the motors off and wind them down by hand. Installed them finally and they look really great. The light colored inserts got me thinking about the look of the interior and how great the white seat inserts look in my little green car. Could be the doors and rear seats will get a similar treatment.

I also got my front seat belts in so i can finally safely drive her! Turns out the guy who sent them to me sent me Jetta B-pillars so those are worthless. It's a shame too because they have the adjustable tops which can be nice. I'll have to see if i can source the Golf B-pillars with adjustable tops. Install was easy. I pulled the rear "door cards" out(not that there are doors back there), located the mounting hole which Volkswagen graciously left there, mounted the seat belt reel there, the top through a plug in the B-pillar and the front bottom in it's home below the door. Piece of cake and we're all legal now.
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Click to EnlargeThis week i also received my coolness new head unit. An OEM VW "Design" edition TAPE DECK! Yeah, a CD player would be more convenient and all, but fug it, I'm going old school with this thing. The wiring is messed in there from the PO having an after-market head unit of some kind so I've really just got the thing sitting in the dash filling the whole. That's okay since I've pulled all of the speakers out anyway ;)

With the seat belts in I've made a new discovery on my test drives. The odometer isn't working. I saw a fix for that on VWVortex.com so I'll tackle that before i put many more miles on the car. Taking apart the gage cluster sounds like fun, heh.

Today i also tackled my exterior trim pieces. These things are so sun bleached they are well on their way to being white! The pic at the top of the page kinda shows how bad they are. That's not just dirt there, that's the color of the trim. There was a thread on VWVortex.com that was a test of several blackening methods. After the first month the Kiwi Leather Dye was working the best. I'm not keeping the bumpers, side skirts or rub strips so i figured what the hell and gave it a try. It works pretty well, and is certainly black. The only trick is that it tends to stick to itself better than the bumper as it dries so i think the best method is go quick and touch up later. That seems to be working well.

Progress:
· Install Recaro Trophy Seats
· Install Non-Passive Seat Belts
· Install VW "Design" Head Unit
· Install Rear Seat Delete Plastic Trim
· Install New Bosch Front and Rear Wiper Blades
· Clean / Dye Bumpers and Trim
5/29/2006
Today i pulled my cluster to repair it and install new bulbs since one is burnt out. I got new bulbs from the dealership for $3/each. I used the guide at 4130-products.com to remove the cluster. Everything was the same except my speedometer cable had to be removed from behind the cluster, not in the engine bay. My only note about that is that my hands suck sometimes. I'm 6'-7" and getting my big stupid ham fists up there to remove it involved removing the under-dash plastic and reaching up to grab the squeeze clips to remove and replace it. I was thinking i was going to have to glue something back together based on the fix i found at 4130-products.com, but when i got in there i just tightened everything down and it worked great.

Click to EnlargeI finally pulled the original passive restraint stuff out and jumped the wire in the dash after pulling the wire out of the door. I may need to find some new non-passive window trim to make this look neat.

Click to EnlargeI got my Corrado steering wheel installed as well. As i mentioned earlier, I'm kinda tall so i needed a steering wheel that would give me some more leg room. The cool thing about the Corrado wheel is that it is that the hub is recessed from the wheel a bit so it gives me a few more inches of knee room. Good stuff! I'd like to have something more "old school" but i have to say that as far as practicality and OEM parts go... this is the one.

I pulled off a few more tid-bits, the rear speaker trays(replacements on their way), driver side map pocket and speaker(I want the non-speaker one) and some other small jobs.

Progress:
· Repair Odometer
· Jump Wire for Passive Seat Belts
· Remove Rear Speaker Trays
· Remove Driver Door Map Pocket
· Install Seat Rail Plastic
· Install Corrado Steering Wheel
· Install New Door Lock Knobs
6/4/2006
I could do Mk2 suspensions all day long. This was such a piece of cake compared to lowering the Mk4. My buddy Andrew who drives a Mk4 1.8T Golf came by to help, danke man! It's a bit low, and I'm going to have to wait a week or two for the springs to settle before i set the final height, but as long as the 16v lip i want to put on here will clear the ground i think I'll be leaving the front alone. The rear is a little tall though, but i don't want to mess with it until I'm sure everything's settled.

I took the car in to get the alignment done today(6/5) to:
  Stan's Alignment & Brake Service
  1520 Chester St
  Aurora, CO 80010
  (303) 366-1475

These guys are great. I've had them do the alignment on the Mk4 twice, once when i lowered it and the second time when i installed the front sway bar. Prompt, professional and honest service. I highly recommend them, especially for lowered cars.

When Stan's had it on the alignment rack they found the rear control arm bushings were shot. Oh well, no alignment today. I'm going to have to drive the Mk4 for a little bit or risk seriously wearing the snow tires i still have on the Mk2. No biggie. I did some searching and apparently the Audi TT/VW R32 rear control arm bushing will fit. I ordered 2 new front and the TT/R32 rears from PAP-Parts.com. I threw in a set of new hatch struts(tired of that thing hitting me in the noggin) for $18/each, $3/each for the front CA bushings and $16/each for the TT/R32 rear bushings. You don't need the metal sleeves for the rears if you use these bushings, nice.
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Progress:
· Install Bilstein Coilovers

I spoke with Randy at Autobahn Premier Service, who's a good friend, about pressing out the old and pressing in the new bushings. He said he had a press that might be able to do it and we arranged to meet the next Saturday. While chatting, i asked him (knowing what he was going to say) that with the control arms out and an alignment impending whether i should replace the tie rod ends and ball joints while I'm in there. He said he'd have the parts waiting for me on Saturday. ;)
6/17/2006
POWER TOOLS ARE FOR WEENIES! Okay, "weenies" isn't the word i used after pulling the second control arm out by hand and strutting around my garage flexing my nerd skinny muscles, but I'm trying to keep this fairly clean. The front bolts were pretty easy. I put a cheater on the wrench and both came off with little fuss. When i had the bolts in my hands i could see why, they were recently replaced. The rears however... not so easy. When i finally got them out they were so rusty and nasty there was no way i was putting them back in. I shot a ton of PB Blaster up in the holes and put rear CA bolts on my shopping list.

I went to Autobahn Premier Service to meet Randy, pick up the new TREs and ball joints and see what we could do about the bushings. His press didn't work out so i ended up making my run to VW to order the bolts and maybe have them do the bushings. No good there on the bushings since they were tied up, but they gave me the name of another machine shop which could do it. I ordered the bolts since they didn't have them in.

$50 later... seems expensive to me, BUT the bushings are installed, the ball joints are installed and all i need to do is bolt up the control arms and wait for the rear bolts to come in and tackle the TREs.

Progress:
· Remove Control Arms
· Replace OEM Front CA Bushing
· Replace OEM R32/Audi TT Rear CA Bushing
· Replace Ball Joints
6/21/2006
Bolts came in from VW today so i want to get the car put back together and on the ground. I hate leaving it in the air on jack stands in a shared garage. Not only does it feel so white trash, but if someone were to tap it... bad stuff. Anyway, got the new bolts in piece of cake. I torqued everything down to Bently specs and had the car on the ground long enough to loosen the wheel bolts and pull the wheels to check on the TREs.

Let me just say, i HATE TREs now. 2.5 hours of pounding, pushing, lifting and cursing the driver side TRE will NOT BUDGE. I gave Randy a call and he said heat. I'm done for the night. Uggg.

Progress:
· Finish Bolting up Control Arms
· Attempt Removal of TREs
6/22/2006
2.5 hours into day two of JUST the driver side TRE. *BBZZT* Nothing. I've heated this thing up with a propane torch, pounded a pickle fork in there with a sledge hammer, PB Blasted it, heated, hammered, blasted, heated hammered blasted. AAAARRH! I'm going to have to pay someone to do this...

Progress:
· Attempt Removal of TREs AGAIN
· Give Up...
6/23/2006
I called Stan's and they said they would replace the TREs for $30/side. DONE! I don't even want to think about those things anymore.

I went out to Stan's for my appointment this afternoon. I was in the office and i didn't hear them pull my car in, but i was reading a magazine and i hear this *BANG*BANG*BANG*BANG* i smiled to myself figuring that must be me. I put my magazine back in my bag and go to pick up my coffee and *BANG*BANG*BANG*BANG* again. i smiled even more thinking how glad i was that it wasn't me having to do that and i wandered outside. The dude already had both sides off... it took him less than a minute for both sides. I could have cried.

The alignment was done, front was really far off but no surprise with all the suspension and steering work that I'd just done. The rear was -1/64th and the tech said i should just lower the car a bit more and that will square right off. Nice! They also only charged me for a front alignment, knocked $20 off the bill for what i paid the last time i was in for the control arm replacement estimate (even though i didn't have that work done there!) and sent me packing in 30 minutes. These guys kick ass!

Progress:
· Stan's Alignment for Alignment
· Stan's Install TREs
6/29/2006
Nothing big today, but i did install my smoked dome light with a door-shut delay off and i wanted to update with some new parts that are not yet installed.

Dome light is plug and play and looks really nice.
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Click to EnlargeI also got these from Jon at Performance-Cafe: Euro small front and rear bumpers with the chrome stripes, single round badgeless grille, Hella H4 e-code headlights and 16v GTI front lip.

I have a guy in New York sending me a 16v dash which is supposed to be on its way now.

I also have a guy in Burbank, CA sending me the metal lower front valance i need to install the small bumpers and 16v lip, the bolts to hold one of the hatch struts(I'm missing both from one side), new speaker shelves for the rear and the plastic plugs that hold the rear trim plastic to the hatch. I'll probably rattle-can the valance black for now to make sure everything is going to fit properly, but I'm still hoping to have paint and the new engine done this fall so it won't be black for long.

Progress:
· Smoked delayed dome light installed
7-2-2006
I found out Friday that I had a four day weekend. I really wasn't expecting that so I'm sitting here trying to figure out what to do and it hits me, go to the junk yard! I don't know if I've mentioned it before, but my alternator has whhhhiiiiiiiiinnnnnneeeed since the first time i ever started the car. It's very tolerable, but still annoying. Also, i was still looking for a few small parts and i figured i had nothing better to do.

The pull-n-save was pretty packed, but luckily people, for the most part, are looking for non-vw stuff. This time out i found three Jettas and a Golf.

I hit the Golf first. It was a '85 which was pretty awesome since that was the first year of the Mk2 and i was thinking there might be some choice bits there. Well, it must have been on the lot for a week or so because it was pretty gutted. I did score a pair of the no speaker door map pockets in cleanable shape and a very nice fan speed adjuster knob but nothing else from that car. The interior was in pretty decent shape, 'specially for a 21 year old car, but not good enough to take the door cards.

On to the first Jetta. The only thing i could find on this guy was a very dirty, but i hope cleanable center console. The previous owner of my GTI thought it would be cool to mount a cell phone holder or iPod holder or some stupid holder type thing to the center console and the lower part of the dash. This one is all straight, just very dirty.

The second Jetta was there the last time i was out here and it showed. Complete waste of time for me.

The third however had a nice looking alternator. The last two Jettas were missing and the one on the Golf didn't have A/C. I don't know if that made a difference and if i hadn't found this one i probably would have grabbed it anyways, but no need. Pulled it out of the Jetta and was on my way.

At home, pulling the old alternator was the same as the Jetta at the yard, but maybe slightly easier since i had just done it. I took a look at it and it was pretty much identical to mine so i was ready to rock n roll. I looked at the belt while i had the unit off and got to thinking that i should just replace the alt belt now. There were some small cracks and the belt looked a little worn on the face. No biggie i thought. The only thing standing in my was was the A/C compressor belt. I located the tensioner on it, loosened all the bolts keeping it in place and wound the tensioner all the way down. Only problem is, there was still no where near enough slack on the belt to get it off.

In the end i gave up. The old belt doesn't look great, but I am going to be ditching this engine soon enough and if my buddy ends up getting the engine he can have the belt i bought with it. It'll be a ton easier to pull it with the engine out and if i were him, I'd replace all the belts before i re-installed this engine anyways.

Progress:
· Install used alternator
7-3-2006
Without much to do on this four-day weekend i decided to play with more parts on the car. I picked up two door map pockets that don't have the speaker grilles from the '85 Golf at the Pull-n-Save the other day and decided to clean those up as well as the Jetta center console and get them installed. I scrubbed the parts down and got rid of the candy stickiness on the parts and gave them a good douse of this blackening stuff that seems to be sticking great. The Jetta console didn't fit straight away and needed some trimming so i used the original one as a template and cut them down. As it turns out, the pocket on the inside of the console is still too deep so i had to scrap the cut up Jetta console. Oh well, at least it was only 4 dollars from the yard =) I pulled the door cards out and took them inside and cleaned them off a bit with a damp scrub brush and gave all the plastic bits a wash and blackening while i was at it. Reinstalled everything, including the center console and called it a day with the car.

Progress:
· Install door map pockets
· Attempt and scrap using a Jetta center console
7-4-2006
I really didn't have anything to do today, but i can't believe the weekend is already over.

I decided to lower the rear a bit more to reduce the rake and hopefully center out the camber on the rear. I took it down to two threads on the rears which is pretty much bottomed out. These Bilsteins are definitely not the "ultra low" coil-overs. That's cool, i don't think I'd want to go much lower than i am now anyway.

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Still scratching my head trying to figure out what to do, i decided to take a look at how the grille goes in and the wiring for the Hella lights that have been sitting in my closet for the last few weeks. I realized how simple it was and decided to just go ahead and swap the lights and the grille. Plug and play minus the quick wiring for the lights to swap them to H4s. I picked up some gay Silverstars from the local auto store. It was all they had in H4 and it's the 4th of July so everybody else is closed. No biggie tho, the light output should be pretty good still and i don't drive this much at night anyways.

It started raining just as i started to fit the grille so i had to pull the car inside. I'd have better pictures, but the light in there was terrible. Perhaps tomorrow.

Progress:
· Lower rear coilovers
· Install Hella H4 headlights
· Install Single Round Badgeless Grille
7-12-2006
I got my shift boot and e-brake boot/handle in today and put them on. Looks a lot nicer than the rubber boot and the e-brake handle that came with the car that i threw out immediately. The previous owner thought it would be a good idea to paint the handle and boot red... Anyone who's ever owned a used car that they work on seems to find all sorts of head scratchers -the Porsche REALLY had some good ones. I'd like to think at least that anyone who buys a car from me won't ask themselves that.

Click to EnlargeMy new dash also arrived today too. It looks good. I was a bit concerned since it's taken over a month to get here from New York. I haven't installed it yet and I haven't decided if I'm going to swap it before the paint work or not. Guess it depends on how bored i get one of these weekends. =)

Progress:
· Install Leather Shift Boot
· Install Leather Ebrake Boot and Handle
7-30-2006
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Click to EnlargeI tackled the dash swap and a few other bits. I spent a chunk of the day yesterday modifying the early dash to work with the tilt steering wheel. It wasn't difficult work, but did involve cutting quite a bit of material around the steering column hole. The late dash that came in my car had the trim piece that fits around the column so I used that as a template to cut, test, cut, test and cut again until I was satisfied with the fit. I'm going to need to fabricate something up to hold the trim in place since I had to cut holes in the dash where the mounting screws would fit to get everything seated properly. No big deal there either, I'm figuring a couple pop-rivets and silicone should do the trick.

Click to EnlargePulling the dash was pretty simple.
Remove center console.
Remove the knee bar (4 bolts on either side of the dash).
Remove the screws on either side of the dash.
Remove the 2 screws in the center below the dash.
Remove the 2 screws below the rain tray in the engine compartment.
Remove the steering wheel. (I skipped this)
Gently wiggle the dash free.

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I'm still going to have problems with the switches not matching up to the dash bezel, but I'm just going to keep searching the junk yards for the correct parts. I got a guy in Iowa who was parting an '85 Golf to send me a dash bezel and switches, but apparently all early dashes are not created equal and it's the same part as my old dash. Oh well, keep searching... For now I've just got the switches loose in the dash.

Click to EnlargeI also installed the blower motor that I got a few days ago. It didn't solve my noisy motor issue so I'm going to have to pull that and figure it out later. Probably leave well enough alone until I strip the car for paint.

The guy in Iowa also sent me a few other parts including the defrost vents which fit, speaker grilles for the dash, a new center console which will need some cutting to fit like the Jetta one I had before, but at least the pockets won't make it not fit, bolts for the hatch struts and bumper mounts for the small bumpers.

I'll cut up the center console and get that installed in the next few days more than likely.

Progress:
· Swap Dash / "Custom" Cut-to-Fit
· Install Hatch Strut Bolts and Struts
8-12-2006
Off to the yard today in search of parts. There were three Rabbits and a Cabrio out there today. They were all pretty gutted, but it's funny that I haven't seen any Mk1s out there until now. I found a 16v Jetta with a pretty straight lower metal valance with all of the hardware intact except the plastic grille. There were three other Jettas out there (not one Golf) and all three had destroyed lower grilles. Picked up a bunch of other little plastic bits as well including a new fan speed knob, seat belt bolt covers and some other little crap. $6.62 in total. I love the junk yard. I cleaned it up when I got home and found two small dents that should pound out and clean up with little effort. The part is red so if I decide to test fit the bumpers I will probably prime and rattle can it flat black. We'll see.

I found a guy on VWVortex.com selling Golf tail lights for $25 shipped so I picked up a set of them. Junk yard won't do much better than that price and finding ones that aren't cracked is really difficult especially when most Mk2s I find are Jettas. The lights I plan on using are the white/red ones (not crystal) but these will do for now.

Progress:
· Shop at the junk yard, wooo.
9-10-2006
Had a good day at the yard today. I found the rest of the bits i need to make the old dash work including the center square piece that holds the defroster, fog light and hazard switches, and the headlight switch frame. I was please to discover that the switches are all interchangeable so no fabrication or wiring work will be needed to get this all together. I also found the lower plastic grille for the front metal valance, a very nice rear deck lid and an extra passenger side tail light.

I got everything home and pulled the dash bezel to test fit everything, clean it all up and get ready to re-install. It will be so nice to have a complete dash again without all the switches just sitting in there bouncing around. I also picked up some very fine sanding pads to clean up some of the slight discoloration on the plastic of the bezel. I tested it out on a few extra trim pieces i had laying around and the result after a few VERY light strokes with the sanding pads and a good clean and buff turned out very well indeed. I light sanded and buffed the rest of the trim pieces to match the new texture created by the sanding and buffing. They may need another light buffing to match, but I'll do that in the sunlight to make sure everything is nice and consistent.

My odometer stopped working again today. I'll need to pull that and fix it again. Perhaps this time I'll add a drop of glue to the assembly to keep this from happening again.

After getting the rear deck lid home and cleaned up (the previous owner must have let their long-haired white dog sleep on the thing) i decided to pull out the rear speaker shelves and see how well everything matched up. Well, shape wise, they all fit perfectly but the carpet on the speaker shelves is badly sun-bleached. I went to a fabric store and picked up some heavy felt which pretty closely matches the color and texture of the carpet which i will be cutting and spray-mounting. I'm hoping that when it's done that they will match the deck lid closely but if not I'll pull the fabric off that and re-cover it as well so it's nice and consistent. Might not be a bad idea to get rid of any lingering dog smell too.

It's been a few weeks since i made an update to the page here, but I've been doing the least fun part of working on a car. Saving money. I've got the body work and new engine to get sorted hopefully before it gets too cold out and that's kept me from really doing much work. Plus so many plans i have are the small details that will happen after it's all cleaned up on the exterior since I'm going to be striping the interior for the paint.

I went to Apex Auto Body in Denver on Friday and finally got a quote for the body work. My project budget for the body was about $5000. This includes shaving the banana lights, shaving the driver side wiper, shaving the antenna, shaving the rear wiper and spray nozzle, shaving the rear VW logo, filling the holes the stupid dealership put in the rear panel for their badge (i HATE that), filling the rivet holes for the side skirts, fender flares and rub strips, pulling all the dents, and finally sanding down and re-painting the entire car. I'm thinking SMOOOOOOOOOOTH. They quoted me $3000 for the body work and about $500 for the metal work. $1500 less than my budget. So sweet! I talked with their paint guy for a while about their materials and process. It was all very professional and he was super into his job as was the manager who was into my project and how i wanted to do it.

I'll be sorting out the engine and various other parts for the swap in the next few weeks. I don't know what all Joel will want to do to it before i get it so i want to give him as much time as possible. I'll keep the page updated as i find out more.

I had to return my buddy Erik's camera so no pictures this time, but i just ordered a new one so the pics will keep coming.

Progress:
· Located lower plastic grille
· Located rear deck lid
· Purchased new covering for speaker shelves and deck lid
· Located missing dash bits
9-17-2006
First off, I picked up a new camera so we'll have no shortage of pics from now on. It's just a point and shoot small and simple one: Casio Exlim EX-Z60 from newegg.com for $219.99. Exactly what i was looking for.

Last week i spoke with Apex Auto Body about the body work and this week i talked with Joel at RS Motorsports in Denver about the engine. The swap will cost $2000. This includes the engine, transmission, sub-frame, shifter box and radiator fans. I'll still need to source a few more parts to finish the swap including a radiator core, non-ABS pedal cluster, 16v GTI fuel tank pump, Techtonics cat back exhaust and a Futrell Autoworks tachometer signal converter. This other stuff is going to run me a little over $1000 with the bulk of that being the exhaust.

I've set things in motion now. Ian from my car club RMCB5 has graciously offered his help and garage pulling the 8v out, tailoring the car between his place and the body shop and then help installing the VR6 when the shell is ready. We're set to do this on Saturday(9-23-2006) and I'll have my wonderful and amazingly supportive lady Wendy there to shoot pics while our hands are covered in goop.

To start my end of it, i started pulling the interior out of the car today. Out came the rear door cards, the B and C pillars, hatch trim, center console, knee pad, shift boot, e-brake boot to start with.

Click to EnlargeMy lovely assistant pulled the rear wiper assembly out (I thought girls who liked this stuff were a myth!).

Next came the headliner. I pulled the sun visors, oh sh*t handles and sunroof panel out first. These are all very straight forward except the clips for the sun visors which after you remove the screw need to be turned ninety degrees to pop out.

Click to EnlargeThe five plastic plugs that hold the headliner up in the middle were next and not as straight forward without breakage. There are four in the center and one smaller one where the driver side oh sh*t handle would be.

Click to EnlargeThe first one I pulled I used a thin screwdriver and VERY gently pulled down being very careful not to damage the fragile headliner foam. It quickly broke, but i did get it out. Now having one in my (dirty) hands, i could see how it's held in by small plastic fins. For the next four i used the rope handle from a shopping bag on either side of the plug to pull and they all came out quickly and perfectly. I'll have to pull a few from a junk yard car next time I'm out there.

The next piece and casualty to this removal was the rear plastic trim piece that holds the headliner in at the hatch. There's nothing you can do but pull this thing, so again very gently i got all but the last clip out perfectly when the whole thing snapped off in my hands. Oh well, another $2.00 junk yard part to hunt for.

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The Bentley says you need to remove all three pillar trims, the rear plastic and the plugs, and the sun roof crank cover, but fails to mention that you also need to pull the headliner material that is glued to the inside of the sunroof hole under the sunroof trim piece. Here's a picture of me pulling the material off after i got the trim piece off. I had to loosen the sun roof track to get the trim piece out as well. I didn't pull the sun roof tracks out, i just loosened the screws that hold it down enough to wiggle the trim piece out.

Click to EnlargeAfter that, i had Wendy use her head to hold up the headliner board and using a screwdriver, pulled the headliner from around the window trim. The last windshield that was installed had a bit of sloppy glue that had bonded with the headliner and i had to poke at a few spots to get it free. After that, the two of us carefully moved the headliner out of the hatch. I don't know how the heck Jetta owners have done this, but it couldn't be fun.

Here's the headliner out and then the collection of other bits we pulled today as well as shots of the interior now fairly gutted. My apartment is starting to look like I'm building a car in it right now. Oh well, just a few weeks of clutter and then re-assembly time!

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Here's some under-hood shots as well. I will not be sad to see this mill go...

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9-20-2006
Click to EnlargeWith the engine pull coming up on Saturday, I wanted to finish up some more part pulling. Today off came the side skirts, fender flares and side molding. This basically involved drilling out the rivets on the flares and pulling them off, drilling out the rivets on the side skirts and sliding them off their mounting tabs and sliding the side molding off their tabs and removing the tabs. All-in-all not a lot of work, but I found some slightly annoying things under the flares. First, the passenger side fender has been replaced with one that i believe is cut for the G60 flares. There are two mounting holes on top and the lip has been cut to allow for wider wheels. I couldn't find the pics i took of this, but I'll post them up soon. The body shop is either going to have to rebuild that fender to match the non-cut one on the driver side, or I'll have to get a new one. That will depend on their projected cost for fixing it. I found a NOS fender online for $75+$50 shipping. The next bit of sour news is the passenger rear flare was removed to uncover a good chunk of rust which will have to be cut out and repaired. No getting around this one, so that's more metal work needing to get done. I'm going to have the shop look closely at the whole car and search and destroy any rust they find. No point in doing all this work only to have the cancer take over down the line.

Friday is my last day of having the car at home so I'll be finishing up the parts pull. This includes pulling the dash, rear carpets, front door cards and anything else i can pull and still drive the car. I'll have to cart the rest of the bits not going to the body shop including the grille, rain gutters and what not home and just have the parts needing paint/work in the boot.

More to come, including pics and words from the pull on Saturday!

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9-23-2006
The 8v engine is done and done. Thanks go to Ian for his garage and help! I won't go into great detail about the process since it's pretty straight forward and beyond the scope of this write-up for a DIY. Wendy shot a bunch of pics which basically tell the story.

In addition to removing the engine, the rest of the interior and exterior parts were removed including the bumpers, antenna, banana lights, tail lights, grille, rad support and front clip.

After we finished up, the car was winched onto Ian's trailer and taken over to Apex. Most of the pics are in my gallery. Click Here.

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10-05-2006
Click to EnlargeNot much to report, but I should soon have an update from the body shop. I was able to find a person online to send me a new fender that isn't cut for the G60 fender flares and I dropped that off with the body shop this afternoon. They immediately threw it up on a rack and started grinding away on it. Yum ;)

I decided that since the glass is coming out that i should take this opportunity to replace the rear glass with the non-3rd brake light version from the early cars. zero666cool from VWVortex.com is hooking that up for me.

Pedal Cluster is here now too!

More soon, including pics of the metal work!

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11-02-2006
I went over to the body shop today to check on the progress. The good news, there WAS some! Not as much as I'd hoped, but at least it's not just sitting in the corner collecting dust. I may go over again today and pull my other Recaro out. I don't think they need it and I'd really rather it wasn't sitting there getting kind of abused by shop dirt. I'll be recovering it, but not immediately. I'll also hopefully get an update from Dave. The fellow I spoke to said it should be in for paint in a week or so. I don't actually believe that, but it's a nice thought.

On to pics!

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11-15-2006
Back at the body shop today, more pics -and another "two weeks" kind of reply. I'm so glad this isn't my only means of transportation. Pics time!
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11-21-2006
My new rollers arrived today. 16x7 Porsche 928 Teledials. The wheels are a bit beat, but they look straight and bend-free. I'll be locating a shop that can give me a light polish on them in the next little bit, but i don't plan on running them until spring so no rush. I went over to the body shop to test fit everything. We've decided to roll the fenders a bit just to make sure there's plenty of clearance all around.

There's something interesting brewing with the guys from DubZentrum.com but i don't want to get ahead of myself quite yet about it. For now, here's some pics.
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