'00 Beetle TDIsore

Colin Doyle

Active member
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Minnesota
TDI
00 Beetle
Long time lurker, first time poster. My name is Colin, and I'm from central Minnesota.

I got a good deal on this car back in the autumn. It's been in a collision and bears a salvage brand on the title, and it was in need of some TLC. Someone had used epoxy to patch a crack in the intercooler end tank, which had peeled back and caused a boost leak. Additionally, the pump timing was severely retarded, it needed a couple wheel bearings, the handbrake cable sleeves had collapsed, the exhaust had rusted out just after the flex pipe, and the turbo actuator was getting flaky. I addressed all those issues, as well as replacing the starter and cables and having the alternator rebuilt (rattling sprag clutch.)

I fitted a set of Basset racing wheels, fabricated a tube bumper and outfitted it with some leftover Hella 500s and an eBay intercooler from my spare parts bin, straight-piped the exhaust, installed an onboard battery tender and lower radiator hose heater, and sourced a pair of used roof rails and a new cargo basket. I added a few comfort/convenience features, as well: tinted windows, hardwired dashcam and radar detector, Ram mount balls on the dash, and an SD/USB stereo head unit.

Next up: .216 injector nozzles, a tune, 5-panel wink mirror, wagon/VR6 springs, General Grabber 215/75-15 tires, skidplate, and a rear tube bumper with a receiver hitch (so I can use it to launch my jet ski this summer.) I'd like to freshen up the transmission and install an LSD at some point, as well. Other than that, no future plans exist. It's a pretty good daily beater. :D

Buying a neglected, high-mileage TDI is not an endeavor for the faint of heart, or for those who hire out their repair work.

 
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Colin Doyle

Active member
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Minnesota
TDI
00 Beetle
I drew a skidplate in CAD quite a while ago, and finally had it plasma cut from 3/16 aluminum a few days ago. I went to pick it up today and helped the guys operating the press brake with the bending processes, and then installed it on the car. It doesn't limit ground clearance as much as it looks - it just covers the bits that were already hanging low, and provides excellent protection to the pan, pulleys/belt, power steering hoses, and radiator. A boost in ride height is certainly in order.












I reluctantly reinstalled the front license plate, as well, to appease the local constabulary.
 

1nfinitum

Member
Joined
Dec 22, 2012
Location
Phoenix, AZ
TDI
2014 Jetta Sportwagen 6sp
This is actually kind of amazing. Some people may call it an eyesore, but I give you props for it. I would definitely be turning my head on the street.
 

Colin Doyle

Active member
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Minnesota
TDI
00 Beetle
Yup, it's in the works - I'll be fabricating my own lift.

I replaced the rear wheel bearings today, so that's something. Springs should be here soon. :)

The top of the skidplate is all covered in oil from my leaky pan. There's a Cummins 6BT-swapped '06 Dodge Charger occupying my hoist, and I'm a little too lazy to install the new pan on jackstands.
 

ItAintRodKnock

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 29, 2008
Location
Fraggle Rock, CO
TDI
01GolfTDi
How long did it take to fabricate the bumper? and about how much?
it looks great, id like to do similar for my golf; but im considering the route of buying a used one off craigslist for a truck and cutting it up and welding it back together where i want. any thoughts?

car definitely looks great though.
 

Colin Doyle

Active member
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Minnesota
TDI
00 Beetle
The bumper took me a log day's work to lay out and tack, and then probably less than an hour to weld.

Cutting apart an existing bumper, reconfiguring it, and welding it back together sounds like a bit of a nightmare, and it probably won't yield anything that fits well. If you don't have a bender, maybe get some weld els and build it out of sch40 pipe?

Anyway, my lift and tires are now installed. These are the Moog springs with 2" spacers up front, which really just increase preload. I tried a 1.75" spacer under each rear spring, but the car had a huge rake to its stance. I may try a .75 or 1" spacer just to kick it up a bit - right now it sits level. Compared to the springs I removed, the Moog springs had an additional two coils per spring and a substantially taller free height.
I also installed new strut top cushions and bearings, outer tie rod ends, and ball joints.




It has a rust hole in the rocker, I know. I have far more important issues to sort before I repair that.
 

Kingcodez

Veteran Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2007
Location
Orlando, FL
TDI
00-Beetle
Wow that thing is so epic, I'm thinking of going the utility route with mine as well.
Any chance on making another bumper/skidplate set?

Is there any more room for a bigger IC on that?
 

Colin Doyle

Active member
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Minnesota
TDI
00 Beetle
You can fit any intercooler you'd like, as long as you build a bumper to hold it. haha

I could build another bumper and skidplate, but it will be costly and shipping could be a hassle (especially if you're actually in Suzhou, China.)
 

Colin Doyle

Active member
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Minnesota
TDI
00 Beetle
Due to my 0-offset wheels, I had some rubbing issues on the front end when I installed these tires - they're General Grabber AT2 in 215/75-15.

On the back side of the tires, I had to trim away some of the plastic splash guard inside the wheel well and bump the sheet metal back with a small sledge until there was adequate clearance for the tire at partial-lock.

On the front side, the tires were contacting my bumper. I cut about 1.75" off the end of each side and created two matching bends to meet the main hoop's new ending locations, which I welded in place and smoothed with an assortment of sanding discs prior to paint.

Turned out swell.



Paint worn off indicates the extent of the rubbing.


Chopped out the offending sections.


That new steel smell.




After smoothing the welds.


Good as new. :D


I can't drive this car anywhere without people rubbernecking, taking pics & video, giving me thumbs up, etc. I'm not generally one to seek validation and approval from external sources, but it's kind of cool to witness a creation of mine having that sort of effect on people.
 
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cevans

TDIClub Enthusiast, TDI Parts Ninja Vendor , w/Bus
Joined
Sep 24, 2002
Location
Hingham, MA
TDI
2015 Jetta TDI 6spd // 2015 Bettle Conv. 6-Speed
Beast mode!

Love it!
 

Colin Doyle

Active member
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Minnesota
TDI
00 Beetle
Thanks!

Today, I installed an EGR delete kit and a hybrid steel/aluminum oil pan (the original pan had a crack and had been leaking since before I installed the skidplate.) Looking forward to having a Malone tune performed soon.
 

ItAintRodKnock

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 29, 2008
Location
Fraggle Rock, CO
TDI
01GolfTDi
Looks great. We did suspension upgrades about the same time. I went similar route, moog rears and two white two blue front springs and billyTCsports.
We had the same results, the front is sitting higher; I added 2 inch lift upfront and nothing for the rear.
Adding the weight of the bumper guard I imagine I'll only be doing a 1 inch pick for the rear.

So, as far as "chopping an existing bumper up" I guess sounds a bit more involved. My theory is just cut out the center beams(grill) and narrow them and reweld, then I would "just" need brackets to mount to the car.
If you were slightly closer I would bug you into doing a weekend project with me to help build another one for my golf, but that would be quite a drive for something like this.

Car really looks great man. I love it.
 

Rafedial1

Veteran Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2014
Location
Vermilion, OH
TDI
2003 Jetta TDI
Baja bug is back! awesome, I would rock it. Great fab skills/design, creative and clean.

What kind of tubing bender do you use?
 

Colin Doyle

Active member
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Minnesota
TDI
00 Beetle
Thanks, dude. I don't know what kind of bender it is; a friend of mine lent it to me a while ago. It's a self-contained unit that pushes the tube through the dies vertically. Takes JD 3 dies, IIRC.
 

Colin Doyle

Active member
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Minnesota
TDI
00 Beetle
Hah, yeah right! Hood stack isn't really my style, but if it were I'd rather put it on my most recent project truck:






The ol' Ford-Cummins-Allison hat trick. :D
 

Colin Doyle

Active member
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Minnesota
TDI
00 Beetle
Thanks!
I pulled the rear bumper off last week, finished all the welding, coated it in epoxy primer and satin black, then had a friend at the exhaust shop build a Corvette style axle-back system for it.
Here are a couple pics after I slogged it through a muddy horse arena to retrieve the jet ski trailer from its winter resting place. It towed well! Tugging the skis out of the Mississippi on a loose gravel launch was a bit hairy, but it did the job without requiring a tow. haha



Just for fun...
 

GIDDY_UP_GO

Veteran Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2007
Location
Indiana
TDI
10 Jetta 13 Beetle Convertible 15 GSW
Dude! You have skillz! I envy you immensely! I have an 02 TDI Beetle that I totaled when an 80yr old pulled out in front of me. Anyway, long story short, I bought it back from the insurance company and put it back together myself. HOWEVER, I would have loved to have seen your car before I put mine back together, because I love what you did to it!

I have an 02 TDI Jetta that is wrecked and listed for sale here. I thought about keeping it and going the MadMax route, now I have inspiration!

Thanks for sharing and keep up the awesome work!
 

Colin Doyle

Active member
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Minnesota
TDI
00 Beetle
Hah, thanks! Do it up.

I'm going to pick up some steel today to fix my rusted-out rocker panel. Mini rock-slider time. My 1-inch 240 deg tubing die has just arrived.
 

Seatman

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Apr 23, 2010
Location
Scotland
TDI
2007 Seat Alhambra 2L tdi
I get tempted to do something like that with my wagon when I see some of the cool projects on here! I'd keep the bumpers though.

Anyway yeh, certainly hits high on the cool scale! :D
 
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