Project VW T25

With the out­side look­ing slightly less Scooby Doo, we turn our at­ten­tion to the in­side.

Classics Monthly - - Contents - WORDS PAUL WAGER

Sort­ing the grotty trim and at­tend­ing to some safety-crit­i­cal items.

We spent most of last month try­ing to get the out­side of the Car­avelle look­ing vaguely pre­sentable and although it’s not ex­actly concours stan­dard just yet, it’s now look­ing re­spectable enough to drive round in with­out on­look­ers star­ing and point­ing.

This left the in­side in dire need of at­ten­tion. Af­ter just a few min­utes be­hind the wheel I re­alised that the keeper of the ve­hi­cle in re­cent years hasn’t ex­actly been a devo­tee of the rit­ual Sun­day car wash to put it mildly. The in­te­rior looks as if it hasn’t been cleaned in sev­eral years and was quite sim­ply dis­gust­ingly filthy.

First step was to break out the trusty Vax car­pet clean­ing machine which worked well, with the wa­ter com­ing out dark brown af­ter run­ning it over the two front seats.

The car­pet though was an­other mat­ter. When it left VW’s Hanover fac­tory, the Car­avelle was trimmed with blue door cards and car­pets to match the blue velour seats, but the years of ac­cu­mu­lated filth hadn’t done it any favours.

The car­pet cleaner would only do so much and the so­lu­tion was to re­place it en­tirely. Luck­ily, project spon­sors VW Her­itage can sup­ply a com­plete car­pet set tai­lored for the cab area, man­u­fac­tured by New­ton Com­mer­cial which is well known in the clas­sic car scene for their big range of car­pets, seat cov­ers and other trim prod­ucts.

A blue is listed for the T25 but think­ing it might be rather bright, we were go­ing to go for safe old black un­til Andy at VW Her­itage sug­gested a sen­si­ble com­pro­mise of grey.

The kit duly ar­rived and we set to work strip­ping out the old car­pet, which is easy enough once the seatbelt mount­ings, hand­brake sur­round and throt­tle link­age have been re­moved. The new car­pet comes with ba­sic in­struc­tions but it’s re­ally pretty straight­for­ward and with a can of suit­able spray glue and a Stan­ley knife it’s an easy task for the ca­pa­ble DIYer.

We did come up against a slight hur­dle in that our van is an au­to­matic and the car­pet set was for a man­ual but as you can see from the photos a bit of lat­eral think­ing and a sharp blade sorted the prob­lem and af­ter about four hours’ work the Car­avelle is a whole lot more pleas­ant in­side as well as smelling rather nicer.

The next task is to trim the rear sec­tion in suit­able match­ing car­pet, since it’s cur­rently fin­ished in do­mes­tic car­pet tiles which are sim­i­larly filthy.

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