THE TEN DAY CHALLENGE

Yay it made The Telegraph

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/cars/classic/rustbucket-roadworthy-10-days-vw-van-restored-teen-bet/?WT.mc_id=tmg_share_tw

 

Can it be done?  I don’t know?  I have been set a challenge from Scrap yard to France in 10 days!

 

This old Volkswagen Lt  if you talk kindly of it is  absolutely knackered, but I could never cope with scrapping one, people may think I am absolutely bonkers I don’t care, I love these vehicles ever since my mother bought one when I was a child, we named her Vera and I cherish her to this day and this one that I am saving is  named Velda.   She also needs to go to France and is booked on the ferry in just over 10 days time.  But, she needs to travel down to Dover and obviously needs to be road worthy, so needs an M.O.T and one other thing I forgot to mention she needs a container sourcing and fitting and I only have a shed to do it in which gives me a working space of about 2 ft either side!  can it be done?  My mate says its impossible, I say its possible, So I love a challenge, so I took him on and at the end of the day if I fail I’ll still of saved another awesome VWlt. so its win win for me.   So  here goes, plenty of coffee and  minimal sleep for the next 10 days, wish me luck!

Follow the page for updates a full vid will be put at the end

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DAY 1

Well on my way through the first day and got quite a bit done the rot on the chassis has been cut out an re-plated, its all been sanded down all the rust removed and now painted

I have cut the rot out of the rear corner of the cab and started re making that, there was a leaky injector so it was not starting well so tightened and sorted that, all the lights are now working and I have had a good look over to check for M.O.T fails.

The mud flaps were totally rusted away and hanging off so I have made some new supports, made them out of table legs so mum will have to just have her tea on her knee!

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Well its midnight so the end of day one and the windscreen is out an my has it unearthed a lot of rot, see you tomorrow for day 2 thanks for reading.

DAY 2 

All the rot on the cab is cut out and I am in the process of making the panals and re building it, some before and after pics for you.

Day 3

Well it’s day 3 and all is going well, picked up the primer, filler and paint etc today, the welding is nearly done and I have started to fill the passenger side, so sanding tonight, see how it goes.

Day 4

Late start today as I had to go off to do some filming, but I’m on it now, I’ve made a panal and fitted it to the front passenger side, filled it and made sure I have kept to the original factory lines, here are the before and after pics.

 

Starting on the passenger side step so I’ll cut that out and make a new panal and weld it in

 

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Day 5 & 6

Not as far on as I would of really liked, but I have completely finished one side and its ready for primer, but the next side is worse so if I don’t step up the speed I don’t think I will complete, unfortunately the welder broke today so I was over an hour fixing that, but I have also had to fit a new top arm ball joint and anti roll bar drop link onto the passenger side so at least they are on.

 

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DAY 7

Well the finish date is looming and my mates have more confidence than me!  Cannot thank everyone enough for the endless cups of coffee and my mate Wayne even stopped over last night to keep me company, which was great, I am well on with the drivers side but I am having to completely rebuild the front panal as you can see from the pics its completely rotted away and so has the support to attach it to

 

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Making all the new panels myself we have not bought one panel

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The rear drivers side is the worst unbelievably part of it was actually held on by sealant! Even the air filter box holder is rotted through just one massive hole so cut that out and just on with making a new panel

Even the hand brake cable is just hanging onto life, just lol New bracket made and welded

 

My mate Wayne cutting out some metal for me to weld and me just building up the rear corner of the cab on the drivers side

Day 8 and 9 

Well only tomorrow to go and I went through the night last night, then thought I better get a couple of hrs sleep early this morning and I must of been that tired I set the alarm wrong and was woken by my mum ringing at 10.40!!  So I am again on catch up, but the whole of the welding is done, all the filler is sanded down, I have been through 3 A4 pages 0f M.O.T failings and rectified them and that was when it failed 3 years ago and its been stood outside since then! below is just one of the pages !

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Thats the inside sprayed

And masking up to spray the outside

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All in primer now and ready to flat down

 

She’s sprayed and lacquered!

Day 10

Well its the final day and its 1.30a.m and with a bit of string and determination I’ve got the windscreen back in.  Panicked like mad I may break it and I would of failed, but its in, come into make a brew and my adorable sister; Matilda has made me a bed with two of her teddys on the pillow, things like this spur you on again when your knackered!  Love her!

 

I have worked through the night and she is totally finished YAY!!!!  Unfortunately I missed my 8.30 a.m M.O.T slot.  Electrics is definitely my weakness and the wiring loom had been cobbled together and it was a night mare to fix, so at 8.30 a.m this morning I was still doing the brake lights!  I wanted an early slot so that if she failed I would of had time to rectify the fail points and re book her in,  but that was not to be I am sitting here now waiting for the next available slot and she just has to pass or no France!

Well thats it, she’s passed yay, absolutely over the moon!  From a scrapper that had been stood for 3 yrs cos it had that many M.O.T fail points they covered 3 A4 pages to a fully serviced, including cam belt change and body sorted, welded and sprayed #VW beast, could not be happier ,  #IlovemyVWlt

Making a frame to fit the container on

 

 

Off to France!

The container is on and mucked and washed out for the trip it was absolutely filthy, found some nice sunglasses ready for France!

The ferry booking operator messed our times up which apparantly ‘happens all the time!’  so we had to get a later ferry, but we are on and she travelled down 340 miles without missing a beat, hope she runs as well in France, if its hot, see how she goes.

On the off and in the port and finally onto the ferry, managed to get most of the stickers removed with the delay, just the removals at the front to go now, I’ll polish her up when I get home

Arrived in France fine albeit very tired, the mix up with the ferry made us late and ruined the first day,  we had planned to go into Dieppe, but now we could not do that as we were now running late and mum wanted to get some miles done before it was dark and so we did not have a long journey.  We started on the road to Amien and 10 miles in we started loosing power drastically, I had faith in the old girl, but mum was having a full blown panick attack, we pulled up in a layby and after I calmed mum down! I took a look at the engine, I sourced the problem to the throttle cable the sleeve had slipped.  After I rectified it she went to Amien with no problems.

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Couldn’t of picked a more beautiful place to break down!

Arriving in Amien we managed to pick up a few signs! love the tail lift

The Notre Dame Cathedral in Amiens is just breath taking, its just absolutely stunning, the city is beautiful, it is so clean, I loved it and would recommend it to anyone

 

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https://www.visit-somme.com/amiens-and-other-tales/notre-dame-cathedral-amiens

And Dieppe is just as beautiful, unfortunately we could only stay for a couple of hours

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So back to the ferry and again she ran with no problems

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When we got back into England we were stopped by the Police to see what we were carrying and they checked the contents, they then asked us our destination and the officer says good luck on the M25  the powers that be have made it into a ‘smart’ motorway and  its just a large car park and he was not wrong!  We did 10 miles in 2 1/2 hrs and then got held up twice after that is took us 10hrs to do 320 miles.  It took us nearly twice as long to go up the motorway system in England than it did to travel from Amien, go through customs, travel on the ferry and go through customs again!

https://www.autocar.co.uk/opinion/anything-goes/smart-motorways-good-name-bad-idea-discuss

Coming up the motorway knowing our challenge was nearly over, beams on our faces we heard the devastating news about another Notre Dame, the one in Paris and obviously received this news with great sadness and hope that at least the majority of this outstanding building can be saved

So even having been sat in traffic for over 3 hrs in total and completing approximately 1200 miles apart from one little hiccup, our super VWlt beast, pulled it off, she came from a total mess, sat for 3 yrs and not road legal to a road legal machine that worked for 1200 miles and goodness knows how many hrs on tick over stuck in traffic, with only one small hiccup she safely brought us home and for that I applaud her!  Thanks for reading x

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14 thoughts on “THE TEN DAY CHALLENGE

  1. Billy you are one amazing young man, in the face of adversity what you have achieved and continue to achieve makes you a unique special young man and you should be proud and stand tall, cannot wait to see your next project- but please catch up on your sleep first 😂😂

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  2. Yes! I’ve been waiting with bated breath all evening – absolutely fantastic achievement Billy, your hard work and determination paid off – bring on the next challenge 😂😂

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  3. Billy, words (nearly) fail me – this is such an incredible achievement, I take my hat off to you for this top-class work, you’re a genius! I loved reading through the whole story of the repairs and the final triumph of getting the MOT. So glad you got such good help from your mate – and also I loved the bit about your sister Matilda making you up a little bed with two teddies – she gets this week’s virtual gold medal for being the world’s best sister!

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    1. Thanks so much Alexandra, thats really kind, I am trying to do the blogs a bit more educational so people can copy showing that you don’t need all the gear to get a good result, I am having 2 days media training at the end of the mth so hopefully the next blog will be better thanks for your comment

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  4. Loved ready this Billy, she certainly didn’t let you down. You’ll be able to write yourself a book soon on your renovations, challenges and adventures – I would love that 😁. What’s next Billy, can’t wait to follow the next project

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    1. Thanks Julie I would love to write a book but my English and spelling etc is not good enough! I have a charity event this weekend with the boat so getting ready for that then I will start the new project next week and put a blog up, thanks so much for the support much appreciated

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      1. Billy that should not stop you writing a book, there are plenty of people that could help with that, we all have our own talents, yours is with your hands. Good luck with the charity event – I so wish I lived closer I would love to bring my camera along and take some photos, enjoy, the weather is supposed to be great

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