this 1964 restoration is one of the more iconic and impressive jobs that has ever been seen in our reconstruction shop. This bus is built for the tracks and not normal roads. With a 2.0 liter engine, all around disk brakes and a reinforced chassis this bus is ready to burn some serious rubber.
- Stage 1: Arrival
- Stage 2: Sandblasting
- Stage 3: Chassis Reinforcement (video)
- Stage 4: Chassis Paint Preparation
- Stage 5: Side Metal Work
- Stage 6: Window Frames
- Stage 7: Front Doors (Video)
- Stage 8: Floors
- Stage 9: Samba Walkthrough
- Stage 10: Structural Alignment
- Stage 11: Paint Preparation
- Stage 12: Painting
- Stage 13: Mechanics
- Stage 14: Montage
- Stage 15: Rack and Pinion Steering
- Stage 16: 2.0 Liter Motor (Video)
- Stage 17: Finished Interior
- Stage 18: Finished Undercarriage (Video)
- Stage 19: Finished Exterior
- Stage 20: Testdrive (Video)
- Phase 21: Container Packing
- Phase 22: Arrival at Antwerp
- Phase 23: Customer delevery
Stage 1: Arrival
This beat up 1964 school bus is going to undergo one of the most prominent and profound transformations in automotive history, but there is plenty of work to do yet!
Stage 2: Sandblasting & Stripping
The hull is separated from the chassis because of necessary structural work, and sandblasted to remove all the paint and filler.
Stage 3: Chassis Reinforcement (video)
Two major modification have to be done to the undercarriage of this bus to accommodate the power and weight of a 2.0lt engine.
1. First the back axle is swapped out for a much sturdier T2 axle that will provide the structure to hold the weight of the 2 liter engine.
2. The chassis itself must be reinforced. All the power and energy travels through the chassis and up to the front wheels. A normal 1500cc engine holds its own without a hitch, but the power applied by a 2000cc engine would twist and wrench a normal T1 chassis when going around a corner.
Stage 4: Chassis Paint Preparation
Since the Chassis is already completely separated from the body, we will prep it for painting and coat it before installing the cab back. This way any parts touching the cab will also be protected from rusting over time.
Stage 5: Side Metal Work
In the Meanwhile, specialists prepare the body that will be fitted onto the reinforced Chassis at a later date.
Stage 6: Window Frames
Here we meticulously work on the window frames, restoring and strengthening them. This is one of the most time consuming steps in a restoration as window frames are not readily available.
Stage 7: Front and side doors (Video)
This work requires a lot of attention and time. In this case even more so since this bus will get a much more powerful motor.
Stage 8: Floors
Like all of our projects the cabin flooring is replaced with new metal as is the passenger and cargo area flooring.
Stage 9: Samba Walkthrough
This client ordered a walk through modification to the interior that was never part of the original Brazilian T1 models. After cutting out the metal separator we needed to add some more metal supports to the structure and adjusting the metal flooring for the walkthrough.Moreover, we also made a modification to the floor above the motor for the spare wheel casing
Stage 10: Structural Alignment
After doing all the metalwork we made some final adjustments to the sheet metal in order to smooth out the metal as much as possible and to provide the best structure on which to start the paint preparation.
Stage 11: Paint Preparation
In this stage we are applying a thin layer of polyester mastic to the metal structure of the bus to prepare it for paint preparation. We also apply a rust inhibitor to the exterior.
Stage 12: Painting
Here we are applying a uniform Lotus white coat of paint that looks fantastic. With all the options installed this bus will get tons of attention.
Stage 13: Mechanics
Below is a gallery of images that make up the powerful motor and transmission assembly of this fantastic T1 bus. The shop also installed some disk brakes on all the axles as well as a restored suspension assembly.
Stage 14: Montage
After assembling the motor and all the mechanical elements on the bench it is time to install them in the bus.
Stage 15: Rack and Pinion Steering
Rather than installing a regular steering box the shop decided to develop a new rack and pinion system that really offers the smoothest ride possible.There is a per-steering box that transfers the steering column movement to a cylinder with teeth that then move the tires. This is a much smoother and reliable system than the original version.
Stage 16: 2.0 Liter Motor (Video)
Here is this 2.0 liter beast in its full glory! Installed and ready to roll!
Stage 17: Finished Interior
Take a look at this great interior!! the samba walk-through really adds some character to this bus.
Stage 18: Finished Undercarriage (Video)
Watch on YouTube
Here is the finished underbelly of this great giant! Take a look at the great steering system and the strengthened chassis as well as the disk brakes.
Stage 19: Finished Exterior
Here is the finished product! ready for export to Belgium! With all the chrome trim it looks really fantastic!
Stage 20: Testdrive (Video)
Watch on YouTube
Phase 21: Container packing
Here are some pictures of container packing that we do in our workshop. We use covers for the vehicles and also dehumidifiers make sure that the vehicles are dry inside during the journey to Europe. Also, the batteries are disconnected and there is no gasoline in the tank for safety reasons.
Phase 22: Arrival in Antwerp
Finally the dream bus arrived in Antwerp. After we have cleared customs and VAT, the vehicle is released and stored in our depot, where it is waiting to be transported to our customers.
Phase 23: Customer delivery
The Combi Bus is finally at its customer’s home in Belgium! and he is very excited to finally get it on the road!