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RE: [T3] newbie


My comments below.
   Toby Erkson
   air_cooled_nut@pobox.com  <-- Please use this address for email
   '72 VW Squareback 1.6L bored and stroked to 2.0L, Berg five-speed
   '75 Porsche 914 1.8L, R.I.P., ORPCA member
   '95 VW Jetta III GL 2.0L, P-Chipped, Jamex sport suspension
   Portland, Oregon, http://www.pobox.com/~toby_erkson/

> -----Original Message-----
> I'm new to this.
> I have no experience working on vw's, but I do try to do some
> car repairs myself. 

Welcome.  You've found the best Type III resource around.
 
> How possible is it for someone with no experience to learn to 
> work on one of these?

Very possible.  My Squareback is what I began learning on.  Expect things to
start out slow but as you get used to performing tasks (like valve
adjustments, oil changes, brake pad/shoe replacements, etc.) your skill and
time will improve.  Know your skills so you know when to stop before things
get out of hand (and expensive) but, by the same token, don't underestimate
yourself, either.

Before you start working you need to get "How to Keep Your Volkswagen AlManual of Step-By-Step Procedures for the Complete Idiot by John Muir".
Go to 
'http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/156261343X/o/qid=921078887/sr=2-1/00
2-9218417-2561633' to see what it is.  This is what I used and it was
extremely helpful.  The next shop manual I bought was a Haynes manual
(http://www.haynes.com/na101.html#anchor570578) and it's one you will want
if you get a pre'68 since it covers carbs.  However, the Bentley is THE book
to get
(http://www.rb.com/volkswag/vsqu/vsqu.htm).  If you get a '68 or newer
("newer", hahaha) it comes stock with fuel injection.  Both Haynes and
Bentley cover fuel injection but the Bentley gets into greater detail and
should be your second shop manual.  Remember, a shop manual is a tool and
required equipment if you are going to perform your own repairs.  Many
questions can be answered by reading one of these.

> Can they be reliable enough to be used as daily transportation? 

Like any car they are so long as you maintain it.  My baby, even though
customized, was my daily driver for years.

> Are parts real hard to find or expensive? 
Yep and yep...but it does depend on what you're looking for.  Some parts are
easy to find, like ignition points or spark plug wires.  Good body panels,
seat rails and heat exchangers are more difficult.  Search the web, contact
the advertisers in the VW mags, or ask the list if all else fails.  Don't
forget to check the classifieds at the T3 web site!

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