79 Beam in 59 Bus?

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sinistervw
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79 Beam in 59 Bus?

Post by sinistervw » Tue May 31, 2011 4:28 am

Got a 79 bay that is a prime donor, and we are working on getting our 58 done. We need to update the brakes, and the old beam is gone!

So what all modifications need to be done if possible to the 79 beam or the 59 bus to get it to work? I tired Google Fu, but couldn't find anything close. I am also not familiar with Bus interchangeability.

Thanks all!


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sinistervw
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Re: 79 Beam in 59 Bus?

Post by sinistervw » Tue May 31, 2011 4:15 pm

Thanks Marc!
So It looks like it will work, but I have to cut and rotate the tubes, and either weld bottom of beam in place or make new mounting holes.

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Daniel G
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Re: 79 Beam in 59 Bus?

Post by Daniel G » Wed Jun 01, 2011 3:40 am

By the time you do all that work it probably would have been better to go on The Samba's bus classifieds and buy an early split bus front beam. Besides...with a Baywindow beam in a split you will be 2.5" higher up front...

nickvb
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Re: 79 Beam in 59 Bus?

Post by nickvb » Fri Jun 03, 2011 5:39 pm

I put a '79 beam in a '57 and am very happy with the way it worked out. What I wanted was ball joints, power assist disks, sway bar, bay wheels that properly fit high load tires, near new condition and stock height and ride.

Here are the issues:

1. The spring leaves are the same number and spring rate. I tested them. Also, they are the same part #. You have to rotate the center anchors quite a bit to get the height set but the ride will be the same.

2. The upper two mount holes are where you want them but the lowers are too low. I added lower mount flanges to the frame.

3. The hardest part but not too bad if you are good with metal fab is that the pressed metal cans that connects the end of the upper and lower beams is too large to fit the cutout in the frame rails. I modified these.

4. With the bay wheels the track width is only about 1/2 inch wider. It looks fine to me. I used bay IRS and wheels in the rear also with Hankook R08 tires all around. Other wheels such as Audi and Mercedes fit this bolt circle also but the bay wheels with moon caps and beauty rings look pretty good to me.

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sinistervw
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Re: 79 Beam in 59 Bus?

Post by sinistervw » Fri Jun 03, 2011 5:54 pm

Thanks Nick!

We are pretty good at metal fab, and by your account it sounds lie you have done exactly what we want to do with ours.

Thanks

Jon

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Re: 79 Beam in 59 Bus?

Post by nickvb » Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:40 pm

Good. It works pretty nice! If you look at the position of the screws that anchor the torsion leaves at the center of the beam on the '79 vs the '59 beam you can see that the leaves are preloaded by being more wound up on the '79. This is to carry the heavier bay bus at its intended height. The leaves however are exactly the same between the two and so are the lengths of the trailing arms for the two beams so rotating the position of these screws sets the height for the lighter '59 bus and gives the same spring rate (ride stiffness) as the '59. You need to cut and reshape the upper inner part of the pressed steel cans on the '59 where they fit in the frame cut out. The lower mounting holes in the beam line up just below the bottom of the frame rails. It is easy to weld a pair of U shaped steal straps to the bottom of the frame rails to surround the bolts from the bottom two beam mounting holes. I lowered mine about 1.5 inches below stock and found that swapping the upper and lower rubber bump stops gave much more travel range since the lower bumper is much shorter than the upper. I don't know if this is needed for stock height. I hope this helps.

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Re: 79 Beam in 59 Bus?

Post by heli-easy » Sun Jun 05, 2011 5:18 pm

Where are you located? I have a 68 bus front beam that I am looking to sell. Its a crossover beam, has the split bus mount holes but is a ball joint beam with big brakes and wide five lug.

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LivininnaVWBus
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Re: 79 Beam in 59 Bus?

Post by LivininnaVWBus » Tue Nov 17, 2015 1:44 pm

I think you'd be better off using a 68' beam which is a direct bolt on to the split window, then modifying the bay beam for the late model luxuries. I've got a clean one for sale as well, was going to use it in a 66' westy I ended up selling. $150, http://www.thesamba.com/vw/classifieds/ ... id=1844350

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