Camp Westfalia

Maintenance & Repair

 A Mobile Anachronism

Truth be told, it is no easy feat to keep a 30-year-old van running. Especially one with the added complexity of the Westfalia Camper package. And especially if you expect it to withstand the rigors of everything from long-distance, non-stop thru-trips to unpaved backwoods camping forays.

In all likelihood, the previous owner neglected or abused the poor beast, and there may be any number of hidden components just waiting to fail, leaving you stranded.

The good news is that although those with cold hearts may have let the old gal slip into a sad state of decline, that maintenance curve can be reversed, and with proper care, the right attitude (and a somewhat thick wallet) she can be brought back into her full functionality and former glory.

Making Custom Rigid Hydraulic Brake Lines

Replace the old, rusty, unsafe steel brake lines on your Vanagon (or any other vehicle, for that matter). After 30 or 40 years, the original steel brake lines on your Vanagon/Transporter may well be past their reasonable service life, especially if you live in a wet region where corrosive road salt may be used on […]

Replacing the Vanagon Rear Hatch Struts

Here’s how to fix your van’s rear hatch if it won’t stay up or is difficult to open If you (or more correctly, your van) has been suffering from a loose posterior opening (ahem), you probably need a new pair of hatch strut lift shocks. In a pinch while traveling or camping, you can fashion […]

Your Emergency On-Board Vanagon Tool Kit

How to put together a complete emergency tool kit for your Vanagon, Transporter, or Bus Every tool is a hammer, except for a screwdriver, which is a chisel. Perales, Samba member You’ve spent the better part of the spring (and no small amount of cash) repairing, maintaining, and restoring your Vanagon or Bus, preparing it […]

Winterize Your Westfalia for Storage

How to put your Vanagon Westfalia Camper Van to bed for the winter or off-season You’ve hopefully just completed a long happy summer of road tripping in your camper van, with all the memories and Facebook moments that come with it. But if your van resides in the cold northern tier of snow, ice, or […]

Replacing the Westfalia Tent Window Screen

How to replace the torn or tattered window screen in your Volkswagen Westfalia Camper popup tent After many miles and many years of camping, the insect screen in the popup tent window of your campervan can turn old and brittle. It will eventually start splitting and crumbling apart, allowing pesky bugs into your cozy abode. […]

Preparing Your Vanagon Westfalia for Summer

How to get your Vanagon Westfalia Camper Van ready for summer road-tripping and camping “Spring has sprung. The grass is riz. I wonder where dem campers is?” Paraphrased from Frederic Ogden Nash If your camper van is anything like mine it probably spends its winters tucked safely away in a big red barn, or maybe […]

Vanagon Clutch Slave Cylinder Replacement

Related Topics: Hydraulic Clutch System Overview Clutch Master Cylinder Replacement Bleeding the Clutch Hydraulic System Back in the left-forward corner of the engine compartment, just ahead of the edge of the deck-lid opening, you will find the clutch slave cylinder mounted to the clutch housing. Start by using some WD-40 and a shop rag to […]

Essential Vanagon Tools

“Usually, the only tool you need is the one you don’t have.” Andrew A. Libby, Samba member Basic Tools The VW Vanagon will require few special tools, and most work can be performed with conventional tools available to the average home mechanic. The following is by no means a complete listing, but should give any […]

Product Reviews: Vanagon Workshop Manuals

“If money is your hope for independence you will never have it. The only real security that a man will have in this world is a reserve of knowledge, experience, and ability.” Henry Ford (1863-1947) Personally, I can never have enough manuals, and throughout my years of VW ownership I have accumulated a small collection […]

Westfalia Pop-Up Roof Refurbishment

Westfalia Camper Roof Overview Of all the clever German engineering features employed in the Volkswagen Westfalia Camper, the distinctive raised fiberglass roof is perhaps one of its most ingenious. Providing over eight feet of standing headroom, the poptop allows for the comfortable changing of clothes, cooking and other kitchen tasks, and reveals the two-person upper […]