Follow the progress of the 1988 Volkswagen Cabriolet. See how transforms from a chalk covered mess, to a sweet ride.

Removing Sound Dampener VW


I was having some technical issues Friday so this post had to hold off until today.

I got a Cabriolet update for you! My plan is to start with getting the interior all nice and pretty. Then I will move on to brakes, then suspension. After all that is complete, I should have the power plant and paint finalized(hopefully 😉 )

So today I am testing a method to remove the factory sound dampener from the car. I want to make sure there is no rust on the inside before moving forward. The heat method is the best way that I have found so far. I have heard that Dry Ice also works well. I will test that for you and we can all see the proof.

After all the sound dampener is gone, I will treat the floor with a paint treatment that will stop rust. Then I can put down some better quality stuff to help keep road noise and heat down..

Here are a couple of before and after shots.

I will also be ordering carpet this week. The best I have found comes out of the UK. It is a little more expensive, but it is already cut for the seats and the shifter. If I buy the stuff from the US, I will have to cut all the holes. The carpet basically comes as one giant “stamp”. I would have to tailor it to the car. 🙁


Hi folk

Today you get to see my first attempt at bringing the interior of the Cabriolet back to life. This video demonstrates 2 different products.

The goo gone worked okay for the price. The Un Do, didn’t really work but I don’t think that is the right application. I would say that neither of these 2 products worked great. Just remember that this is EXTREME! Just because a product doesn’t work here, doesn’t mean it is a bad product.

If you know of any super cool techniques to remove stickers, post them in the comments. I will be more that happy to try them. There is no shortage of places that need work. This video confirmed the work that I have ahead of me.

Remember that you can also connect with me on Facebook, You tube and Twitter. I am all about chatting it up on Facebook or Twitter!

Auto Mechanic Project Cabriolet

Well, as promised, I shot a video of the Cabby last night. After work last night I spent a few hours replacing the clutch. I will dedicate a post solely to that soon. Lets just say it was toast!

As you can see, I have some BIG TIME work a head of me. That is the fun part about the project right? I will say that the car is in pretty darn good condition.

After I test drove it, I found it would not stay running. A vacuum hose came off on the front side of the engine. I fixed that. Then I found the distributor cap and rotor were worn out. I got those coming along with some new spark plugs.

Well, what do you think? In over my head? I would love to know.;) I hope you all have an awesome weekend. I have some pics of the damaged clutch and some before and afters for everyone. I will post them asap.

If you knew that my first car was red, click one of the buttons below. BTW my first car was red.

Volkswagen Cabriolet Humble Mechanic

If you have been following the blog, (of course you have 😉 ) you know that I have been searching for a project car. You might also know that the Cabrio and Cabriolet hold a little place in my heart. I think that a convertible plus a VW is a winning combination.

My first car was a convertible. It was a red 1995 Jeep Wrangler. It was so much fun to drive, top down jamming to some tunes! Driving my Jeep that way really made me fall in love with driving. There are only a few things I find more relaxing than a nice drive in a open top ride. Ah nostalgia!

Well, I finally found the car. She WAS a sweet little VW Cabriolet. To be honest, I totally forgot what year it is. (do’h). I say WAS because she got violated. From what I understand, it was donated to a charity. Then it got brought back to my work. It was in the show room for a while, and I finally talked the management into letting be buy it. I tried like hell to buy it before it this happened to it.

Volkswagen Cabriolet Humble MechanicYes friends, that is CHALK! Sidewalk chalk. It went from a red that needed some love, to this. I think that I will draw a teardrop on that eye while I fix the rest of the car.Interior VW Cabriolet auto mechanic

The inside did not fair much better. I hope that I will be able to restore the dash. The sad part is, the dash was PERFECT! That was one of the most valuable parts on the car. I don’t know exactly what they did, but it is sticky as can be. My guess is some sort of paper machete type thing. Be sure to notice the green on the floor, and around the shifter. If that looks familiar, it should. It is that outdoor “carpet”! WHY WHY WHY????


As you can see, there was no panel safe from chalk. Auto Mechanic Project CabrioletI have not really decided what I want the overall project to look like. My first mission is to get the car back to stock. I think that it as a small oil leak, but what VW doesn’t. The really awesome part for your guys is, I can demonstrate some really great cleaning and restoring techniques. While I hate washing cars, bringing a VW back to life is a whole other ball game.

Auto Mechanic Project Cabriolet

Here is the whole thing. They even got the rims! What do you guys think? I know I have a lot of work ahead of me. I am sure my wife thinks I am in way over my head, or maybe my wallet.

What do you guys think we should call this project? How about this, you guys post a project name in the comments. We can work together to pick a cool project name. Tell ya what, we pick your project name, I will send you a cool VW prize!

Help put more project names into the pot, click one of the buttons below!