My old '69 Bug heated the passenger compartment like a friggin' blowtorch,
but then I never drove it anywhere REALLY cold. I wish I still had it,
although the Jaguar my wife got me is some comfort for the loss many years
ago . . .
Weren't the VW air cooled? Sounds miserable. Sounds like it woulda been
better with some heat in there.
I did see someone who had a Subaru from the south. Didn't even have heat --
and he was driving it in NYS.
VW's were air cooled, and they blew air over heat exchangers (with the
exhaust manifold) to provide warmth tot he passengers. This could take a
while, sometimes, especially in winter. Usually the distance from where we
lived to where we worked.
"MTV may talk about lighting fires and killing children,
Am I remembering correctly that they sold aftermarket gasoline fueled
cabin heaters for VW beetles? Or were they for Corvairs?
IIRC they uswd a vaporizing system similar to a gasoline fueled camp
stove, and an electrically driven blower.
Somewhere out of the mist in my mind the name Eberspδcher comes to mind.
Anybody remember 'em?
There were two types of heaters. Both very similar, but the VW/german
one was much better then the US made after market POS. The first
VW I bought had an after markt unit hta thad a nasti habbit of belching
fire when it started. A friend who was into VWs big time gave me a
unit that he salvaged from a wrecked VW. Much quiter with no fire
oddites and it didn't choke you with unburned gas fumes. From 1975
1983 I went through 3 bugs and moved the heater to each in turn.
Does using a car as a boat count as "jury rigging?"
There was the time my wife and I used a VW beatle to cross ~1500'of
flooded highway. She got out and up on the hood with a big flashlight
and I kept the engine revs up to keep the exhaust clear. The snow tires
made fairly effective paddle wheels. It wsn't the smartist thing we had
ever done, but the other option of trying to walk out was even worse. A
heavy rain up river caused the river to fill and by the time I realised
what was going on,the best option was to get out there was no place to
park the car that wouldn't have flooded, so if the car did stall
would have been lost. There was no current but it was still scary.
I learned to pay closer attention to more distant weather events. Had
I been paying the proper attention I would have known about the heavy
rains 100 miles up stream and would not have gone to visit a friend by
Corvair came out in 1960 and had a gas heater. I'm not sure about the 61,
but my 62 was heated with the engine heat.
Of all the cars I've owned in 43 years, the Corviar was one of my favorites.
Good handling, great in snow, had a good bucket seat. Had pretty good heat
in winter, and even better heat in summer. I had to cover the vents with
foil in summer.
They came in several sizes. All had glow plugs for starting
and some had spark ignition too.
The co. is still around, making mostly truck heating systems
under the Espar name.
when the engine was at operating temperature the heater only heated the
Left side of the left foot. (I had a right hand drive TR-3) It took
some time to get used to shifting with my left hand. On the other hand
it is much more civilized to flip the bird to some one with your right
hand and not the unclean hand.
There are in fact two things, Science and opinion,
the former begets knowledge, the latter ignorance.
On Sun, 09 Oct 2005 22:28:24 GMT, "Stormin Mormon"
Driving a VW up and down Mountain roads should have produced more ten
enough heat during the winter....
I drove a 61 VW back and forth from my appartment to school in
the BIG CITY ...rush hour traffic.. bumper to bumper.. 2 mph. between
lights.. The .result was the engine never was warm enough to produce
any heat.... Looking back the only thing I really rememebr about
that car was it had no gas guage...just a lever between the seats to
switch to the reserve tank when you ran out of gas... which honestly
happened many times... heck gas was about 25-30 cents a gallon
then...too expensive for a college kid to keep the tank full... .
We drove ours from Michigan to Utah in December... after 36 FREEZING
hours on the road I can attest that they never warm up. We had ice
inside the windows.. and learned to drive inside a sleeping bag sitting
up.. working clutch was tricky.. but once on open road and in 5th gear
it was no big deal.
I had a 64 and a 70 Karmen Ghia. No, it never produced enough heat even on
the highway. The newer one was a little better but I used to carry an ice
scraper for the inside of the windshield. OTOH, they never overheated, even
on the hottest of days.
If you think warming up a VW bug or Ghia was diffucult, try it in a
I had a 71 VW bus that I drove to work and back at one of the ski
resorts outside SLC. Coming back down the canyon at night require me
to dress just like I was out skiing, wool hat, down jacket and gloves.
The only difference was that while skiing, I didn't have to carry the
I solved the heating problem by buying an adapter from a place called
Kennedy Engineering which allowed me to install a Ford 2.8L V6. The
radiator mounted up front. I put in a heater core/fan in between the
front seats and ran a piece of hose from the air outlet. I could
direct the hot air to the windshield or side windows for a defroster
or where ever one needed hot air, worked very well. It also solved the
underpowered problem with the bus, you should have seen people's look
when passed on a steep canyon road by a VW bus, beep, beep...
64 Triumph Herald,rear brake cylinder seal blows while coming down from the
mountains outside of Denver.After running a couple of red lights(what
fun!),got it to a stop,and cut a piece of alum.beercan to plug the rear
brake line,refilled with brake fluid,drive home on front-only
brakes.Surprising how much those rear brakes make a difference!
(did full repair at USAF base auto hobby shop(LowryAFB) next day.)
At home,while cleaning,middle sister leaned on bathroom sink that the
stamped steel hanger had rusted thru,and broke sink off wall,cracked open
iron pipes(old house),spraying water all over while she screamed and held
up sink. 8-). After shutting water off at meter,I used a couple of gas
shutoff valves I found in Dad's misc plumbing box to cap off the sink
pipes,and got the main water back on so Mom could cook dinner.(IIRC,I was
The stamped hanger was replaced with a cast-iron antique hanger by Dad.
bother, just drive with head out the window, or wear artic gear and keep
windows open. Goggles helped. The part I hated was driving through a puddle,
and having water splash up through the floor and hit me in the face.
Damn, I miss those old family Beetles. Unsafe even when new, but a blast to
drive. Totally stone age by modern standards, and parts and service are down
to British convertible standards unless you live in Mexico or southward, but
I'd love to have one for a fair-weather toy.
Negative on the Webers, Jeff. The Spit and almost all English cars of
that period had SU carbs. Designed by a plumber. They were ok if the
gaskets were good, the dashpots had oil and the throttles were
synch'ed. I still have my Uni-Syn down in my toolbox. Webers would
have been a great relief and a big step-up in power.
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