Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project
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Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project Sitting in my driveway

At first we were planning on cutting the s10 frame in the middle so we could shorten the wheel base to what we wanted. I then got looking at it and I noticed that if I put some short leaf springs on the stock front mounts then I could shorten the wheel base enough without having to cut and weld the frame. Instead I could just hack the extra off of the back and make some new rear shackle mounts. Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway

I actually ended up ordering some 30" eye to eye trailer leaf springs. Doing this let me shorten the wheel base to 97.5" which is about 3" longer than the stock beetle wheel base. This is what we wanted so we would have a little extra room for the engine. I had the choice of springs rated for 1000lbs or 2500lbs as a set and I went with the 2500lbs set and figure I can remove a leaf or two if they are too stiff. But bouncing on the frame they seem to only be a little stiffer than the stock s10 leafs.


Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway

Here is the frame cut off at the 31" mark, I borrowed a porta-band from work which made the job easy (Thanks Dave!!!) You can also see my center mark for the new shackle mounts.


Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway


Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway

There is the extra piece of the frame, later on I ground off the rivits holding the shock mounts on so I can re-use the mounts.


Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway

Here I'm getting ready to drill the center hole for the rear shackle from the s10.


Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway


Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway

Here you can see the front leaf spring mount too.


Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway

I drilled the center hole for the shackle mounts and then used a 2" hole saw to drill the hole for the mounts I made. I forgot to take pictures of the shackle mounts, but I made them from 1.5"id 2"od tubing. I found some in the scrap bin at work. I welded a washer in the center of the tubing and then welded the tubing in the hole I cut. I plan on boxing in the insice of the frame at the rear to add a little strenth.


Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway

Since I'm using trailer springs for this I couldn't just use standard leaf spring bushings so I cast some of my own from pour able polyurathane rubber. I turned the bottoms of the molds from some HDPE that I hade and then made the leaf spring and shackle molds from some more of the tubing I used for the shackle mount. The yellow plastic mold will be for body mounts.


Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway

Here are the molds filled with the urathane rubber. I ordered a Smaller sized casting urathane Rubber from McMaster Carr with a shore A hardness of 80A. It was about $30 for enough to pour all of these. I then used some petrolium jelly for mold release.


Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway

ere are the bushings popped out of the molds. The two bigger ones will get cut in half for the rear shackle mount and then I'll muse the 8 thin ones for leaf spring bushings. I'l have one on either side of the spring and they will mount in some more of the 1.5"id tubing. I'll also cut the body mounts to what ever thickness I need later on. Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway

These are the steel spacers that I turned at work for the leaf springs. I found some tubing that had a 9/16"id to fit the spring bolts and I turned down the ends of them to fit inside of the leaf spring eyes. The thin rubber bushings will go over the larger end and they will be mounted in tubing. I'll get more pictures when I get everthing welded up.


Our 350 chevy V8 Powered 1969 VW Beetle Hot Rod Project sitting in my driveway

Here are the bushings with the spacers in them.


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