Saturday, 21 November 2015

Outcast VW Club, monthly meet.

This weeks blog review is all about the Outcast VW Club's monthly meet which is held on the first Thursday of each month at The Charter Pub, Bicester Road, in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire from 7pm onwards. The Outcast VW Club was formed around 3 and a half years ago by 3 Volkswagen owners who wanted a regular place to meet up and socialise. From the humble beginnings where we had about 4 vehicles attend our club meetings, the club has now grown in size and sometimes we can now have 20+ vehicles at our club meet night. The Outcast VW Club Facebook page is also doing well with over 160 followers. You can check out and follow our facebook page here:
The variety of vehicles at our club meets is truly diverse, from show winning early split screen buses to RAT looking beetle's and buses, and water cooled T4's / Golf's. The club welcomes any Volkswagen owner and their vehicle whether it's air-cooled or water cooled. As with any club meet across the U.K. the attendance of members is largely dependent on the great British weather, and as it  gets colder and the dark nights draw in, the attendance figures drop but there are still the hardy bunch who turn up month after month. It didn't help that this month it was bonfire night on the night of our club meet, so a few members could have been at firework displays.
To see all my other blog entries, go to ‘My Blog Archive’ to the left of this page. Simply click on an arrow for a particular year, then click on an arrow for a particular month, this will then give you a drop down menu for all the blog entries for that month.

The first of the hardy bunch is Gary who came
along in his lovely 1971 cross over bay from the
neighbouring county of Bedfordshire. Gary's
white over blue bus is his daily driver.

Gary has recently added the Empi 5 spoke
wheels and had the bus lowered both of
help transform the look of this old bus. 
Considering this bus is used on a daily basis, 
it does look very clean and tidy.

A good photo of Gray's bus from the front, you
can see just how clean it is considering it has
to brave the elements every day.

Kevin and Sam came along in Kevin's 1987
T25 water cooled crew cab pick up. Kevin also
owns a 1970 off road trials beetle.

Kevin's crew cab is a real work horse that he
uses to move everything from Volkswagen parts
for his and his sons off road beetle's, to his
beloved motorcycle.

Kevin has recently purchased a roof top tent
which he needs to sleep in when he goes away.
These roof top tents are brilliant and can be
mounted to all sorts of vehicles. I have seen
them mounted onto Beetles, buses and a variety
of pick ups. When they are not in use they store
 down to a nice compact size.

I went along to the club meet in my new 1999
2.5tdi T4, not because I didn't want to go in my 
1969 microbus, but because having purchased
 it, a lot of the club members hadn't seen it, so I
thought I'd take it along and show it off!

This is my daily driver now and the benefits of
using this are many, including almost twice as
good MPG compared to my old 1600cc Honda 

HRV, and of course I get to drive a Volkswagen 
every day to work. 

Claude came along in his daily driver, an '05
Golf. Claude also has a lovely 1960 split screen
bus and a 1958 low light Karmann Ghia but not
surprisingly decided to leave them in the garage.

Amanda and Simon came along in Amanda's
very distinctive silver Golf with it's super bright
pink wheels and personalised registration Number.

Amanda's rear end with her unique registration
number, 'X 17RSE' (kiss arse)

The Outcast VW club line up on a cold, dark and
damp Thursday evening. Although the numbers
of members was down on previous months it
was still a very enjoyable evening with like
minded people.

The line up from a different angle, (before Ryan
and Luke arrived).

The constant drizzle couldn't put off the hardy
members of the Outcast VW Club from
attending the monthly meet.

Ryan and Luke made a pleasant surprise visit 
to our club meet in Ryan's '70 early bay. Ryan 
and Luke are members of the 'VW Collective' 
page on face-book, you can check it out here:

Ryan's patina bus has a massive 2054cc motor
with CB044 heads. It is loud and fast which is
good because both Ryan and Luke travelled
all the way over to the meet from the 

neighbouring county of Hertfordshire.

So that was a brief review of the Outcast VW
club's monthly meet for November. Next months
meet is slightly different, instead of just meeting
up at the pub, Amanda has organised a sit down
meal, as it's almost Christmas. So far we have 
12 members who have committed to attend. If
you live local and wish to attend, visit the face-
book page Amanda has set up and put your
name down! Here is the link:
Everyone is welcome to join us as long you
 own a VW (it doesn't even have 
to be on the
road) Let's try to make this event a good
Xmas meet by having as many Outcast members
as possible attending. Thanks.

Saturday, 14 November 2015

Slough Swapmeet 2015 (part 2 of 2)

This weeks blog review is part 2 of 2, of the Slough Swapmeet 2015 which was held on Sunday 1st November at the Montem Leisure Centre, Montem Lane in Slough in Buckinghamshire. SL1 2QG. This annual event is organised by Vince and Robin, and it's a great place to pick up some air-cooled bargains. The Slough Swapmeet is a table top sale / autojumble that caters for primarily the air cooled Volkswagen's, although water cooled VW's are more than welcome as is anything German including old Porsche's. Being one of the last events of the season it's a great place to socialise with old friends, and even make new friends. The Slough Swapmeet has been going for at least 10 years and I have been attending this event for the past 5 years. The organisers give out trophies for the 'King of the car park', which is for the best vehicles parked up in the leisure centre car park. If you missed part 1 of this review about the Slough Swapmeet check out at my blog archive. To see all my other blog entries, go to ‘My Blog Archive’ to the left of this page. Simply click on an arrow for a particular year, then click on an arrow for a particular month, this will then give you a drop down menu for all the blog entries for that month.

Heading towards the entrance of the leisure
centre I spotted this lovely looking high top 
syncro in an army green colour. I don't know
 what it is about this syncro, but I loved it.

This off road T25 really did appeal to me, I do
like off road Volkswagen's and this T25 looked
so good. It wasn't flash or have a fancy paint job
but I think that just added to it's 'rough and ready
to go anywhere' appeal. 

This gorgeous teal / turquoise late split screen
panel van belonged to the guys from 'Karmann
Konnections' who supply parts and accessories
for classic Porsche's, and it looked awesome.

Inside the Montem Leisure Centre main hall, the
traders were all ready for a days trading. Tonya,
Claude and I got in early due to pre booking our
tickets so for the first 45 minutes we could walk
round with ease.

But very shortly after the mass crowds started
to enter the place became packed very quickly.
There were guys selling parts they have had
kicking around their garages / workshops for
ages and traders selling new parts and
accessories. It was a nice mix of new and
old parts, and the variety was immense.

A slightly blurred photo from the balcony of the
main hall. You can see just how busy it gets,
and trying to have a good look at the traders
stands in quite a task due to the depth of the

crowds. You really can get everything here 
from ariel's to axle's to wing mirrors to 
windows and everything else in between. 

After looking around the stalls inside the main
hall, Tonya and I headed back outside where I
saw this lovely early 21 window split screen.
I did like the look of this bus, with it's slight
RAT look patina paint scheme.

This T4 crew cab is outrageous. It's so unique,
and whether you like it or hate you have to give
the owner credit for ingenuity. Not only has he
mated a caravan body to the chassis, but all
the other accessories he has fitted is amazing.

OK it looks like something out of 'The Beverly
Hillbillies' and It's so ugly it's beautiful and I 

love it. I did like the ship lap siding on the 
caravan body which gives a contrasting
 rustic look against the shiny custom wheels.

However do you come up with the idea for this?
I suppose this could be called Volkswagen
Glamping? I would have liked to have spent

 more time looking at this but time was pressing 
on and there was still so much to see.

It's almost mandatory to have a Fire bus at a
VW show / event and this lovely looking late
split screen van fitted the bill perfectly. I do like
Fire buses and never get tired of seeing them.
I did like the unusual single spot light on the
roof as opposed to the usual cyclopes light
a lot of split screen buses have.

This lovely 1967 early bay panel van looked so
nice with what looks like OG paint. I do like the
whole look of this van from the narrowed front 

beam, to the rear window blind and the all red
U.S. style tail lights.

This gorgeous 1970 fastback was immaculate
and amazingly straight as you can see from the
reflection in the lovely green paint. This really 

was a nice looking type 3.

A truly diverse variety of air-cooled and water
cooled Volkswagen's is always guaranteed in
the Slough Swapmeet car park.

This gorgeous Volvo Amazon, (also called the
122S in the U.S) looked amazing in it's bright
red paint and chrome 5 spoke wheels. I do like
these old Volvo's. The Amazon was produced
from 1956 - 1970, but they never looked this
good when they left the factory.

This really was a nice looking car. The body was
so straight, and the paint was flawless and not
to mention that bright shiny chrome work.

This lovely 1967 split screen crew cab pick up
gave me some Déjá vu as I'm sure this bus was
parked up in exactly the same position last year.
This has to be one of the cleanest crew cabs
out there at the moment. It really is super straight
and super clean.

You can see just how straight the panels really
are from this photo. The inside of the cab bed
is finished to the same high standard as the rest
of the body.

As you would expect the engine bay was also
super clean. How bus owners manage to keep

their engine bay look so clean is a mystery
to me... I just wish mine was as clean.

Taking of super clean crew cabs, how about this
bright orange 1978 late bay. This really was an

immaculate bus that looked great in it's almost
perfect paint. I did like it's standard ride height.

This stunning early split screen was without
doubt my favourite split screen at the swapmeet.
The single white coat of paint, with the chrome
5 spoke wheels and those gorgeous electric
blue windows really made this old bus stand out.

This is one of those vehicles you see every so
often where you wouldn't change a single thing.
The 3 bow roof rack and colour coded bumpers
also help to give this bus the wow factor.

Another bus with coloured windows was this
very RAT looking early bay. This bay had what
looked like orange perspex windows, which
sounds YUK, but actually looks really cool. It
even had a matching amber light on the roof!

The old skool roof rack with the rear ladder,
suited the look of this ratty bus. I did like the
deluxe trim on the bumpers and around the

This lovely 1966 beetle looked sweet with it's
lowered stance and single colour paint. I think
those Fuchs style wheels suit a lowered bug.
I also liked the chrome towel rail bumper.

The early bugs do have a certain something
about them, it doesn't matter that this didn't
have a show winner paint job, because it looked
just fine as it is.

This lovely 1970 white over red early bay had
something I liked, but I cannot put my finger on
what it was. Maybe it was the stock ride height,
I don't know, but I did like it.

Nope, I still can't work out why this lovely old bus
appeals to me... I suppose it just looks right.

I've seen this early bay panel van on several
occasions and it looks just as gorgeous every
time I see it. I love the Porsche decals and the
high ride height. The white wall tyres suit the
white of the decal lettering perfectly.

Some body's little joke.. a dummy's lower torso
is placed under the front of this RAT looking
split screen to make it look like someone was
under the bus. It did look very realistic.

It wasn't all Volkswagen's parked up in the car
park, this gorgeous purple Harley Davidson
soft tail looked great parked up.

Its alright, I'm not about to get mugged by this
scary hooded individual, It's only Joe who is a
mate from The Wolfsburg Weed Huggers VW
club who's just coming to say goodbye. He's
wrapped up warm for the drive back home in his
beach buggy pictured in the background. It's
not too cold walking around the car park, but
driving a buggy at 60mph+ on the motorway in
the U.K. in November, it does get a bit chilly!

Joe just leaving the swapmeet in his super cool
buggy, Joe is driving back with some other
members of the same club. Joe also owns a
lovely early bay.

Just looking at Joe in this close up photo as he
leaves the swapmeet makes me feel cold. Tonya
and I were glad we were in my bay, at least we
had some heat coming through the vents.

Leading our convoy of 2 back towards home
and less than 1/2 mile from the swapmeet I
saw Julian who is also member of the Wolfsburg
Weed Huggers VW Club and he had obviously
broken down. Without hesitation Claude and I

both pulled pulled over to see if we could help a
fellow Dubber and a member of another local
club. Julian was just phoning Joe in the
beach buggy
 to let him know he had broken down. 
After Julian had contacted Joe, Claude 
and I pushed Julian just around the corner 
where we found a small company car park where
 Julian and Joe could work on the bug safely.

Joe arrived back after a few minutes and Julian
got down to telling Joe the symptoms of what
had happened. Julian pulled up at the lights, and
as he went to put the bug into 1st gear and the
gear stick went all loose like it wasn't attached
to anything.

Julian had just 2 spanners and a screwdriver but
that was enough to unbolt the old gear lever,
where they found that the ball on the bottom of
the lever, that selects the gears had sheared
off. Joe volunteered to pop back to the swap
meet to see if he could find a new gear stick
for a '65 beetle and if so, he would purchase
 it. This was a long shot but it had to be
worth a try as the alternative was either being
towed home or to call for the recovery truck.

Just as Julian was showing his disapproval at
breaking down, a lovely baby blue and white

split screen slowly drove into the same car park. 
Apparently he also pulled up at the lights and with
 the clutch pedal depressed the bus was rolling 
forward. He decided to find somewhere to sort 
out his clutch problem when he saw Julian's bug 
and my bay in the car park.

I didn't catch the owners name but he was a nice
bloke and as he didn't have any tools, I got my
tool kit from the bus so he could use my tools.

 It turned out that the clutch cable was stretched 
and a after quick adjustment with a pair of pliers 
the bus was running like new. The owner was 
saying that he and his family had just returned
 from a 2000km trip across Europe and the bus 
ran perfectly, and yet he pops down to the local 
swapmeet and this happens! That's the joy of
owning an old Volkswagen, I guess!

The impromptu Volkswagen repair car park in
Slough. Once the owner of the split screen had
adjusted the clutch cable and after driving the
bus back and forth a few times, he said that the
clutch pedal had never felt so good !.

A better look at the small car park we found in
a side street which we instantly transformed
into a Volkswagen repair centre. As There was
nothing else Claude or I could do to help Julian
we headed on our way. I spoke to Joe later that
evening and Joe said he did find a gear stick
for Julian's bug at the swapmeet for the bargain
price of just £10. ($15 approx) Once Joe got 

back it was a quick and simple fix to get the
 bug back on the road and once again heading 
for home.

And finally, when you go into the car park
you are given a card to hang from your
rear view mirror which has a number on
it, this is the number the public can vote for
your vehicle with for the 'King of the Car

park' trophies. On the reverse on this card 
was some general information, and the
 paragraph about trading in the car park 
made Tonya and I laugh.

So that was a brief 2 part review of the 
Slough Swapmeet. My photos are just
a small selection of the vehicles that
attended the event, there were lots more
vehicles that I didn't photograph simply 
because I don't have the room on my blog
Overall it was. as usual a great day out 
with some great people. If your looking for 
some aircooled parts or accessories, or 
you just fancy a day out in November when 
the VW season has finished to see plenty 
of quality VW's then you really should head 
down to the Slough swapmeet next year.