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Westfalia Canvas Replacement

May 10, 2016
2 minutes read
Westfalia Canvas Replacement

Produced between 1968 and 1979, Bay Window Westfalias are still plentiful in the United States. But let’s face it… the last model came out of the German factory a quarter of a century ago; as a result some of the specific camper equipment can look rather shabby. Point in case, this 1977 Westy, purchased by our good friend Bill Schwimmer last fall. He located it in a local newspaper and paid a mere $600 for the non-running but rust-free vehicle. Besides the dents covering the green body, one cosmetic area that needed attention was the pop-top canvas. It literally fell apart!

Westfalia produced two types of canvas and pop-top combos. The 1968 to 1973 models are hinged in the front, while the later versions (1974-’79) received scissors-style hinges in the back. We located brand new canvases from Wolfsburg West (Corona, Calif.), a reputable company specializing in VW restoration products. For our 1977 Westy–and any other Bay Window models for that matter–we had the choice between two colors: either yellow or a shade of beige/gold which ended up being Bill’s choice.

Before removing your old canvas, be aware that the process of installing a new piece can take between four and nine hours. The steps are identical if you work on a 1968-’73 model, or a 1974-’79 model. This is also a task you cannot complete on your own. At times, you will need at least two more people (three might be better), especially when lifting the top off of the vehicle. As you will see, it isn’t necessarily complicated… It’s just time consuming!

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