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Discussion Starter #1
I'm removing all items in the rear part of my 98 Beetle to get ready for making the body cuts, and install a Smyth Ute Kit.
Tucked under the dark color felt , and located under the base of the back rest for the rear seat, I discovered this odd looking black plastic box, with a wiring bundle going into it.
Popping the cover off, I find inside an electrical connector, with many, small wires connected to it. The diameter of the wiring tells me it's nothing of a heavy duty electrical load nature.
My guess - - - I'll bet it's a factory pre wire having something to do with an upgraded radio system that one could have ordered for this car.
For the many New Beetle folks out there that know these cars inside & outside - what's my mystery black box for ? Mystery Black Box 1.JPG Mystery Black Box 2.JPG
 

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G'day Yooper. Did you get this figured out? Man alive, I'm keen to follow your Smyth Ute build. Lots of pics, please?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
If it's on the left side I bet it's related to the optional CD changer?

/edit Plug looks right for it CD Changer Wiring Plug Pigtail VW Jetta Golf GTI MK4 Beetle Passat - 6Q0 972 726 | CarParts4Sale, Inc.
Yes , you are correct. It is on the left side, and that wire you saw in the photos I posted is approx. 6 or 7 inches long. I'll have no use for it, so I guess I'll tuck it to the side and tape it to stay out of the way of anything else. I guess if it's been hidden under the felt mat for 22 years with no problems, I can leave it alone for another 22 years - right ? Thanks for your help.
 

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G'day Yooper. Did you get this figured out? Man alive, I'm keen to follow your Smyth Ute build. Lots of pics, please?
Hi - As you'll see below, apparently it's for a CD player option. I'm going to try posting some pics taken yesterday & today that = a total of 5 hours of work, and only one SawsAll blade
 

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Is that your own personal garage with the lift? Jealous. How did the rear quarter panels come off? The section immediately behind the front doors? Where a rear door would be on a 4 door car.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Hi - It is my work shop. I started to mess with cars & trucks when I was 14 years old, and finally, when I was 73 years old, I'd had enough of crawling under vehicles, and bought a lift.
Wished I had it long ago, but my wife and I moved many times with jobs - actually moved 13 times ! Now that we are retired, we bought a small 5 acre farm in northeast Missouri, and I have 4 outbuildings. I took one that was made in 2007, and remodeled it into my shop. It's 26' x 40' , with both heat and A/C. I posted a picture of the Beetle in front of the shop on the day I brought it home last fall.

The easy way for me to tell you about dismantling the car, is to tell you to go to You Tube, and enter VW Beetle Truck Kit , or SMYTH VW Beetle Kit. There are actually 18 videos that purchasers of the kit watch to follow as " how to " directions. Mark Smith, the owner of the kit company, has kits for many vehicles. He's also the guy that years ago started making the kit cars for the Shelby AC Cobra cars. After making about 12,000 of them, he sold that company to his brother, who is running it now as Factory Five Racing.

However, to answer your question - the video showed me exactly how and where to cut the body using a SawsAll. The kit side panels are all molded fiberglass and attach to most of the VW body mount points. The cargo box is all aluminum , and one of the videos you can see on You Tube is with Mark Smith showing every part of the kit and explaining where it goes on a vehicle that he has staged there to show the parts . I think you'd be impressed with it.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
G'day Yooper. Did you get this figured out? Man alive, I'm keen to follow your Smyth Ute build. Lots of pics, please?
Hi - I took a couple days away from the UTE project, and rebuilt the brakes. New hoses, as well as new lines in the rear, then flushed the system. All the rotors and pads are new.
Then, as long as the body was so "open" I installed a new Bosch fuel pump and sending unit, and a gas line filter. I also removed the headliner, as I'll be recovering that as well.
I included a shot of the hardware included in the kit. I'm impressed with it. All top quality stainless steel bolts , washers, and self sealing nuts. The aluminum panels are also top quality, and the CNC machine used to cut out the stock is really dialed in well. The CNC machine cuts a 1/8" hole at each place that I need to drill a hole. By watching the build videos I learn which holes need to be 3/16" , and others are 5/16" . So far, every hole had been perfectly placed. I spent this afternoon altering the routing of the wiring from the sedan mode, and making it ready for placing the cargo bed into place.
 

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Very nice keep the pics and updates going. Maybe you could petition a moderator to retitle this thread to Ute bug build or something similar.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hi All - After having further discussion with Thejarhead, as well as with a Super Moderator, I'm going to repost the photos of my UTE build in the New Beetle Experience forum area.
Perhaps someday there will be a forum just for projects, builds, etc. but for now this will serve the purpose. I'll try to show all the significant steps as I see them. Remember, It's my winter project, and being over 75 years old means that I work at a different pace than you 25 to 35 years old guys( and gals ) do !! Also - funny thing - when my neighbor farmer friend stops in to the shop to check up on me, the work seem to stop, and the B.S, seems to start ! I tell him he's cutting into my production. Anyway - thanks for your views , and feel free to ask question or make comments if you like. Cheers !
 
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