“What do you call that?” This is a common question I get asked even among people with sand toys.
My response…“It’s a dune buggy. This is how they were built in the 1960s.”
Before Bruce Meyers created the iconic Meyer’s Manx buggy, hot rod guys were creating home built dune buggies powered by everything from American V8 engines called “water pumpers” to air-cooled Corvair and VW power machines.
My dad and a couple of his friends built this car in 1967-68. I completed a 5 year restoration May 2011. The restoration and history of the car are covered in the October 2011 issue of Hot VWs magazine.
- Based on 1958 VW Beetle pan
- Powered by 2018 Type 1 VW engine, dual 44 Webers with Gene Berg linkage, custom exhaust
- Pro-Sand transaxle
- Custom, one off front suspension
- Austin Healey front wheels and bucket seats
- Custom dual roll bars
- Other original parts include; Sun Super Tach, Moon fuel tank, Weiand valve covers, Hurst shifter, Jamar 1st gen steering brake, 1950s Old Crow Whiskey figurine
Although I undertook most of the restoration, a highly custom project like this would not be possible without the help of many people both friends and talented professionals.
The team at Peninsula Automotive was responsible for wiring/electrical and designing and running all the custom hydraulic lines for the brakes and clutch. Blue’s eye for design, and his attention to detail and quality delivered show quality workmanship. There is a lot of work in the hydraulic lines given I wanted them power coated black which meant Blue had to pre-fitting everything and avoid scratching the power coat upon final installation. Dave was so helpful in ensuring the car was well cared for and worked with me to ensure I could have the car ready for the May 2011 Sacramento Bug-O-Rama car show.
A car like this is never done. A dune buggy has to cope with an extreme operating environment thus fine tuning, maintenance, and repair are part of the experience. Dave, Blue, and Jason continue to provide exceptional help and support.
More photos and information can be found at…