Wednesday, 30 October 2013

House of Dub monthly meet.

It was the week after the storm that hit the UK which caused considerable damage as trees were up routed, and it's the end of October which means it's dark by about 17.00 and starting to get cold once the sun goes down so to hold a club meet may have been asking allot, but the die-hard members of the House of Dub not only turned up, but did so in their VW's. As it was so dark the photo quality may not be what you are used to, but it's just one of those things going to club meets throughout the winter months.
Zoe from the House of Dub came along in her
'67 beetle named Donkey.

Donkey from the side, maybe just one more
sticker on the side window Zoe...

Spike, also from the House of Dub came
along in the patina bus, which has a new
1641cc engine after the old one let go big time.

Just a random photo of the patina on the side
of the House of Dubs bay window.

Darren and Leonie came along in Darren's
lovely looking silver T5. Darren and Leonie
are the proprietors of so check
out these guys if you want a thermal screen
for your bus.

My 1969 bay window. Even though it was
dark driving over to the club meet and it was
quite chilly, I have to admit I did enjoy driving
'Fiona' as I always do.

Alix and Claire came along in their T25 which
is sadly up for sale to fund a trip to Australia.

Winner of 'Best T4 / T5' at the House of Dub
open day with show and shine was Mark who
came along in his super clean lime green T5.
It's always nice to see Mark, as there's never
a dull moment with him around.

A very fuzzy shot of the side of Marks Van.
This is what happens when you try to take a
photo in the dark facing a yellow exterior light.
I should have known better.!

I think this blue Golf belonged to Darren and
Lisa who came over from the Dunstable
Dubbers VW club.

Tony came along in his super clean T25. Tony
won 'Best T25' at the House of Dub open day
and show and shine and it was well deserved.

This is partly why Tony won 'best T25', it's
the end of October, it's been raining for most
of the week and Tony's wheels are shining
like new.!

A new face at the club meet, unfortunately I
have forgotten his name, Doh! but he did
have a nice looking white MK3 Golf. Quite
good how the flash only picked out the front of
the Golf.

Another new member who I didn't have time
to chat to, but came along in their cool
looking dark blue T4.

So that was the House of Dub monthly meet,
considering the recent weather and the time
of year it was quite a good turn out of vehicles.
I know most people want to snuggle up on
the sofa at this time of year, and I don't blame
them, but the die-hard members of the House
of Dub never let Zoe and Spike down.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Signwriting for the Oil Droppers Garage

My best mate Stuart Munro has been servicing and repairing air cooled VW's for the last few years at his garage / workshop in Aylesbury in Buckinghamshire, on a part time basis while holding down a full time job. He has worked on all types of air cooled VW's including Beetles / Bays / Split Screens and Karmann Ghia's, and even from time to time on my bus. He carries out everything from a simple service to a full restoration, from M.O.T. preparation work to welding and fabrication. Stuart has owned a 1971 bay window for about 14 years now and he has recently fitted a turbo he designed himself to his 1671cc engine. Stuart is a well known figure within the local Volkswagen community, with his red oxide painted bay window with the chequered front, well he has finally decided to bite the bullet and give up his full time job and to make his hobby of working on air cooled VW's into a full time business, called 'Oil Droppers'. Stuart and I were talking about his new venture and as I had done some sign writing in the past I said I would create a sign he could put up over the garage to advertise his business, and make it easy for future customers know where the workshop is, just to help him keep his initial advertising costs down.

As it has been more than 20 years since I
have done any sign writing, I thought I'd better
have some practise and brush up on my sign-
writing skills. I found an old piece of 3mm ply of
about the right size and drew the 'Oil Droppers'
logo in the font that Stuart had decided upon.
I found some turquoise paint in the shed and
started to paint the sign. This is not the colour
Stuart has decided upon but it's all I could find.

The name of Stuarts new venture all painted.
Not looking too bad... from this distance.!
Next job was to outline all the lettering in black
to help it stand out.

The board I used was not prepped or rubbed
down, consequently the raised grain was

playing havoc with me trying to get a straight
line. My fault entirely, I should have at least
sanded the board first, but after 20+ years,
 I simply forgot.

Apart from the wavy, uneven black outline it's
not looking too bad.

The trial sign finished, including black outline,
underlined and the whole thing varnished.

Stuart supplied the board for the sign, and he
also added architrave to the edge. The board
size was 40.5in x 24in. The first job was to
paint the whole board in an old looking red

Next job after the two coats of red, was to
apply 2 coats of an off white colour to the
front and architrave.

Once dry I sanded down the white to allow the
red to show through at various places, to make
 the sign like it had signs of wear and look old.

Hopefully it looks like the frame has had years

I learnt to sign write about 30 years ago, and
therefore I'm old school, so the next job was
to mark the board up into one inch squares
using a pencil to ensure the positioning of the
wording is accurate and straight.

The font Stuart chose, 'Magneto' is quite easy
to replicate onto the board. You can see how
useful marking the board out really is. Once
all the wording is painted, I'll simply use an
eraser to remove all the grid lines.

It's a bit difficult to see in this photo, but all the
wording is on the board. I'm not 100% sure
on the spacing of the bottom two lines but I'll
give it a few days to see if it grows on me, if
not I'll space the lines out a bit.

No going back now. Stuart chose the font
and the colour of the lettering, a good choice
considering the background colour, it will
really make the wording stand out.
Well, it's getting there just the last line to go
with Stuarts e-mail information along the
bottom. I decided in the end to space the
bottom two lines out
The sign finished, complete with a couple of
coats of exterior varnish on both sides to
protect it from the elements. I'm quite pleased
with the end result (although you always seem 
to think you can do better) I just hope Stuart
likes it.!

Well I'm pleased to say Stuart liked the sign,
and he put it up on the side of the workshop
the very next day.

Here is another sign I painted for the office
door, a bit tongue-in-cheek with with the
bottom line but again Stuart liked it.

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Brighton Breeze 2013 (3rd and final instalment !)

The 3rd and final instalment of my Brighton Breeze write up continues with the Volkswagen's parked up on Maderia Drive. One bonus of having a VW show right by the sea is that you can wander off into the town or down to the beach or go onto the Pier if you need some time away from VW's.
Going up to the Maderia Terrace, a Victorian
mezzanine floor built half way up the cliff on 
cast iron pillars, gives you a perfect view of
the show and the vehicles.

A nice line up of Bay window campers, every
year of manufacture, every colour and every
specification was on show. 

A great selection of air-cooled VW's on show
in front of the Volks electric railway.

An orange and white late bay, and orange
baja  with a white stripe and a black and white
split screen, great variety.

Under the colonnade is where the traders set
up their stalls selling everything you could
possibly think of, and it's not only traders but
also the public so there's a bit of an auto
jumble as well.

Awesome looking Type 4 painted in the Gulf

A lovely deep maroon, almost black convertible
beetle. We certainly had the weather for the
top to be down.

This pair of Sand rail VW's must have felt
right at home parked up next to the beach.

This stunning Porsche 912 was parked up
amongst the buses, OK, it's not strictly not a
VW, but it is a close second.!

This looks as though it had been restored as
it was immaculate, and the metallic blue was
an excellent colour choice.

A super bright 1968 bay window with what
looks like a Devon interior. I do like the swivel
out cooker unit, I'm going to make my cooker
unit smaller so maybe I'll have it on a hinge
to enable it to also swing out...

This gorgeous 1964 peppermint green  
Karmann Ghia was like new. It was absolutely
stunning, I did like the matching steel wheel's
with whitewall tyres.

This super low 1963 beetle with painted steel
wheels and the US style towel rail bumper
looked so cool.

This is just as nice from the back. I do like
beetles with the blind in the rear window.

Brighton sea front was completely packed with
VW's, these three bay window buses were
parked up nose to tail. I don't think there was
any places left on Maderia Drive by mid

The owner of this lovely red and white split
screen camper also had a Heinkel Trojan
bubble car, circa 1963 in tow with matching

A lovely looking late split screen finished in
beige with a turret top and twin fog lights.

It's not just about buses and bugs as this really
low MK1 Caddy shows. I love the colour and
how low it sits on that awesome wheel & tyre
combination. I also liked the centre caps.!

A pair of early beetles parked up outside the

A late arrival at the show was this grey / green
splitty, it had German plates on it so chances
are it came over from the continent.

How nice is this bus? stunning or immaculate
doesn't seem to describe this bus well enough.

This split screen must be riding on air to be
this low. The low profile tyres help the stance.
Gorgeous chrome bumpers and vent trim
added to the fantastic look of this bus.


This clean looking 1971 square back in bright
yellow looked cool parked up, I do like the
unusual wheel choice.

It's quite rare for me to get all artistic with my
photographs, but I thought this was a good
photo. An early turquoise Beetle outside the

Here is a bus I recognise it belongs to Joe, a
member of The Wolfsburg Weed Huggers VW
club based just the road from us. Joe had
volunteered to be a marshall at the breeze,
and when we caught up with him, it looked as
though it had been a very long night.

It's almost become tradition that we visit the
Pier after a few hours of looking at VW's.
Looking back at Brighton, the show went from
in front of the big wheel to the far right of the
photo by the marina. Lovely looking calm sea.

 The English Channel was that calm this cool
dude was having fun paddle boarding.

Living very close to the furthest point from the
coast in the UK I have to admit I rarely think
about seagulls. They really are quite big, this
one was feeding on scraps of food on the Pier
and stood about 15" high and wasn't bothered
about me getting so close at all.

On the way home after a very enjoyable day,
and on the M25 yet again. We followed this
blue split screen panel van for a while while
doing about 60mph, then it just took off like a
scalded cat and I never saw it again. He had
some serious power..!

So that was the Brighton Breeze, overall a
very enjoyable day out, even if it was an early
start. It was nice to meet up with friends from
all over, some who we only see once in a blue
moon. The quality of vehicles was vast as was
the number of vehicles. I'm not sure of the
vehicle count, but in 2012 it was in excess
of 850 vehicles. The weather was kind to
us yet again, and that always helps make
it a good day out by the coast. We normally
camp over on the Saturday night at the
racecourse but we decided just to head
home this year. With the exception of the
local VW club meets the VW scene is just
about finished for this year, so I'll have to
find other things to post on here, so watch
this space!!!