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VW Beetle Wizard Roadster - Part 1

Updated on January 18, 2015

Build a VW Beetle Wizard Roadster

If you are interested in VW Beetles in any way you will want to take a look at this page. There are loads of pictures of the build of my Wizard Roadster.

For those who don't know the wizard roadster is a soft top conversion for the standard Beetle.

Read on for lots more information.

Beetle Background

If you have already seen this page or are looking for the next page chronicling this project you may want to check out this link:


This is one of the cars that originally inspired me to have a go at building my own. Not entirely convinced about the colour but what a fantastic car!

Getting Started

Ok, Lets get started. My Beetle came from a farmers field and cost me nothing. Yes Nothing.... Well I had to pay to rent a truck to collect it and bring it back to my garage, but I split that cost with my Brother-in-Law who was taking his '65 to be sprayed.

Anyway this is how it looked when it finally ended up in the garage at the bottom of my parents garden.

Notice the bent front beam, damaged front end wheels way out of alignment. small ding to rear quarter panel. Distinct lack of other panels, wings, doors etc. The best part of the car was the roof which was going to be binned.

Another view... Also note lack of glass (not a problem). Is it going to be worth the effort? Many people reckoned I must be mad....

Beetle Books

If you need some inspiration for your project or are just a fan who likes browsing, this book has loads of pictures for you to look at.


Another view of the front end. Damage was due to a front end bump.

Need a Manual?

Check out these titles for the manual you need.

Another picture of the front end damage. Note the bent metal, all that is going to have to come off and be replaced. No room left for a spare wheel!!!

Not a great picture, but you can make out the damage to the rear quarter panel. This will be repaired when the major work is done.

Right what is it like inside? Well the floorpan has loads of holes. When this was being done (late 1980s) replacement panels were available but not cheap and budget was non existant so repairs will be done in the best most economical way possible. Just like to point out that this was being done whilst I was a student and did not have any cash to throw around. Looking back, why did I decide to build a Wizard at that time. No idea now...

Another view of the inside. Notice the lack of good metal in the floor. Why the trolley jack? That was need to try to extract it from the farmers field.

On with the Build

Right, Off with the roof. No Wizard kit yet, but can't wait to make a start. Any way the body is lighter without all that metal in the roof. And I may be able to use some of the roof metal to repair the floorplan... Amazing what you come up with when you've got no spare cash.

Another view just to show I am not kidding. Need to get to the floorpan somehow..

No it is not a buried Beetle and I am not trying to grow a new one!

This is roof out of the way in the back garden.

Bent front beam comes off. Probably only fit for the scrapyard.

You can see the damage to the front end. Apart from this the body was in quite good condition. Not a great deal of rust. Pity the same can not be said about the floorpan!

Floorpan needs some work next. Cut out all the rot and weld in new sheet. The body has been completely removed. Fortunately there is just enough room in the garage to keep both under cover.

The rear of the drivers side has been cut out and most of the passenger side will follow. Unfortunately lack of photos means I can't show you everything. All welding was done with an Electric Arc welder. Couldn't afford a MIG or anything else at the time. I would not recommend trying to use Electric Arc for this type of work, it is extremely hard. Nowadays use MIG or TIG, they are much more available than they used to be.

Featured VW Project

Chug Chug the 1977 Westfalia Helsinki - VW Camper Restoration Story at its best.

If you are interested in VW Campers, vans, buses or just VW's in general you will certainly enjoy this restoration project. Chris (aka ChrisRadioMan) has spent many hundreds of hours giving this Camper Van a new lease of life. Read his forums by clicking on the links below.

Part 1 : Early Days of the Restoration

Part 2 : Major Work and Final Build

Part 3 : End of the Road!

Please remember to mention this page if adding to this forum. You can use this link VW Wizard or copy and paste this text:

[B][URL=""]VW Wizard[/URL][/B]

Do you have any questions? Do you have anything to add? Or do you have any comments in general? This is your opportunity to leave your comments. I will try to get back to you if you have any questions.

If you have found this page useful or interesting and you would like to help other people find it, please give it a rating using the stars at the top of the page.

Even better you can use the function in the right hand menu to email it to a friend.

What do you think?

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    • profile image

      ken locke 2 years ago

      Thinking the kit car market for vw was still here,but seems halfhearted at best. Now that the 13b 20b mazda rotary truly a good well as suberu EJ 26.these provide incredible kit car platforms esp.mid eng mounted(unsure of but can't see why not)1000lbs 4-500hp and reliable,and still good gas mileage,we need it seems some supercar,sports car re-body kit options

    • Robyco profile image

      Robyco 5 years ago

      @anonymous: The headlights are a US spec clear lens unit incorporating the indicator socket to take an orange bulb. These are available from Hella and Bosch among others. The headlight behind the clear lens is a standard unit and used to be available as a sealed beam unit or with a halogen bulb. I imagine if you look you could get some very modern high spec lamps now if that were your taste.

    • b4ndit profile image

      b4ndit 5 years ago

      Nice lens

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Roy, on the Wizard that inspired you - do you know what the headlight/indicator unit is called? I was told, looked it up but have had my laptop stolen and lost the info. Thanks, Paul

    • Robyco profile image

      Robyco 6 years ago

      No, these kits were supplied by a British company called "Wizard".

    • mgassistant lm profile image

      mgassistant lm 6 years ago

      Are these german VW?

    • LoKackl profile image

      LoKackl 7 years ago

      Love the Beetle! Fun lens - squid angel blessed

    • YourCover Mama profile image

      YourCover Mama 8 years ago

      I wanted a Beetle for my first car, but my parents wouldn't allow it...someday I will eventually have my first dream car :o)

    • mazbond profile image

      mazbond 8 years ago

      Wow what an interesting lens. Must show it to my partner, he will love this! 5 stars!

    • The Homeopath profile image

      The Homeopath 8 years ago

      Awesome! From forgotten, rusty, and discarded, to classy and hip. Huge amount of work you must have put in to that.

    • AslanBooks profile image

      AslanBooks 8 years ago

      Very Cool...

    • James20 profile image

      James20 8 years ago

      Wow that is a LOT of work. Good job on this lens!!


    • profile image

      saraht43 8 years ago

      Sounds like your having a lot of fun. I always liked the older style beetle. Enjoyed playing "slug-a-bug" with my brother on road trips. (ie. whoever saw a VW beetle first got to "slug" the other--not to hard tho LOL)

    • DividingLine profile image

      DividingLine 8 years ago

      Good luck with the build. I'll be checking back for more updates.

    • Angelina Howard profile image

      Angelina Howard 8 years ago

      Great lens! Love the beetle. Have to keep an eye on your projects.

    • Angelina Howard profile image

      Angelina Howard 8 years ago

      Great lens! Love the beetle. Have to keep an eye on your projects.

    • ArtByLinda profile image

      Linda Hoxie 8 years ago from Idaho

      I can't wait to see it when it is all done, what a great project! I love the history and nastalgia of the bug. Slug Bug, Pink!

    • Niamh2 profile image

      Niamh2 8 years ago

      I had a drive in one once and found it very disappointing after all the fuss about them. Prefer a conventional car.

    • BrianRS profile image

      Brian Stephens 8 years ago from France

      I used to have a Beetle, what a mad car, 6v system every time I hit a puddle it would leap to the other side of the road, still loved it though. I have lens rolled this one.

    • dahlia369 profile image

      dahlia369 8 years ago

      You would never think that one could actually put together something that can be ridden - out of all those rusty parts. But Beetle is a survivor - and a winner! 5*****

    • sanukmak profile image

      sanukmak 8 years ago

      Great way to document a project. The end of part 1 certainly makes you want to see how the end result turns out. Good lens - just the type of thing Squidoo is great for.

    • MarcoG profile image

      Marc 8 years ago from Edinburgh

      I would love a Beetle...what a car!

    • Mihaela Vrban profile image

      Mihaela Vrban 8 years ago from Croatia

      I look forward to see Beetle finished! And I must say - it's a great project for free time!

    • Haveagood1 profile image

      Haveagood1 8 years ago

      It is great you had the presence of mind to document all the work you did! Intrepid!

    • MatCauthon profile image

      MatCauthon 8 years ago

      I've always wanted a beetle. A lot of this in junk yards here. One of this days...

    • Paula Atwell profile image

      Paula Atwell 8 years ago from Cleveland, OH

      All I can say is Wow!

    • profile image

      CubicleJoe 8 years ago

      Excellent job. Heck of a project.

    • profile image

      ChristiannaGarrett-Martin 8 years ago

      A labour of love I should think! - Excellent Lens.

      5 Stars*****


    • estherjane13 lm profile image

      estherjane13 lm 9 years ago

      Wow - quite a project. Is it finished yet??