One of my favorite books in my library is The Volkswagen Super Beetle Handbook published by HP Books. In most auto books and literature, the Super Beetle at most gets a few pages devoted to it and mostly what feels like an afterthought on the end of Beetles in the US market.
That’s partly why I love this book. It is all about Supers… and more.
Assembled from a series of articles that appeared in the now long defunct VW Trends magazine, I’m glad those articles were combined and sold in book form.
169 pages of photos and information, step-by-step disassembly, restoration, and reassembly of a 1302 model Super, with commentary here and there on 1303 models.
In many ways, it is giving me a guide to follow for my own future work, and part of me has felt I wanted to improve upon it by making my own work “live” as a searchable website for others to use and perhaps find value in, especially from an amateur perspective.
The only real problem with the book is that all of the photos are in black and white and well… it is a static book. If there’s one truly good thing that I can say the internet has contributed to is the discoverability of data and information from multiple sources, something that used to take forever in print and microfiche-only libraries. The no doubt thousands of hours I spent in libraries slowly and meticulously researching and documenting information throughout my grade school, high school, and university lives would probably be a foreign concept to anyone younger than their late 30s. (I practically lived in the Toledo Lucas County Public Library in my early teens
The very reason for this blog is to document the eventual restoration of Żuczek B. and the work on the other cars is to make sure I have a catalog record of activity, and perhaps following the structure of The Volkswagen Super Beetle Handbook is a good idea. Modernizing it with full color images and cross-references to products, tools, videos, and other information sources that can be updated as needed, something a static book cannot do.
I highly recommend this book to Super Beetle owners and any amateur driveway air-cooled gear heads.