Dylan's love for bugs has been for as long as he could remember. It feels like yesterday when he told me that he wanted to start looking for his dream car. It was the beginning of summer 2013, and what was already off to a crazy start was about to get crazier. After a week of searching everywhere online, we came across an og looking 67 java green gem running and driving 65 miles away. The owner had no idea if it would survive that far of a drive back, but after a good look around the car and a quick test drive, Dylan knew this was the one. He gave me the look, we kept our game faces on, and made the deal that got the keys.
A few minutes later the reality sunk in that there was still a very long drive ahead, in a car that drives nothing like the Honda Accord driven there. After a quick pep talk, he hopped behind the wheel, and cruised on to the freeway. Following him in the Accord, he spent the first few minutes or so creepin' at around 50 mph, but then thats about all it took, he put this huge grin on his face, put his arm out the window, stepped on the gas and we were mobbin it all the way back. This is the day that the roots of the BKG were planted. The car itself was pretty beat, and needed maintenance as well as a lot of aesthetic work, but we didnt care. To us this car was the coolest thing ever and Dylan, TBone, and I would take turns driving it every chance we got.
Drop spindles, beam adjusters, and low profile tires on 15x4.5 stockies brought the front beam hovering over the ground, while 3.5 inch dropped atomwerks drop plates and a couple of torsion clicks made the rear fenders glide right over the freshly barreled 15x8 rear wheels.
At the same time all of the maintenance work was done with help from Vic Built, and after a couple months of work, the static sweeper was ready to hit the streets, very, very carefully. The car was so low, that it literally scraped everything including the natural crown of the road. It was quickly realized that shocks were going to be a necessity and some adjustments were needed. This was a very difficult stage to get to in general, being that there were very few examples to build off of and very limited information on the topic. Dylan then drove the car static for a while, although if you ask him about it, hell probably cringe thinking about all of the slams, scrapes, and smashes experienced from even the smallest of issues in the horribly messed up and endless construction that makes up So Cal roads.
We found that air shocks would be the most all around efficient for what we were trying to achieve, and with some modification we were able to mount the front and rear. For management, Dylan went with a 5 gallon aluminum tank, filled by two viair 444c compressors, and fill controlled by Airlift. Later down the line while on a cruise with a lot of other cars, a wheel bearing on the woahwgn seized up leading to snapped spindle and the drivers side front wheel flying down the street. This led to a 4 inch narrowed air beam, pie cut front beam raise, and front disc brakes.
Getting the drivetrain to where it is today, is a long, immersive story, but I'll stick to the key details. It began with a 1600cc single port engine, with a stock transmission. When the car was still static we decided to make the 60 mile trip out to fontana for Bug-o-rama. Everything was going fine for the first part of the drive, however things started getting interesting the second half. First the car died out after both rubber manifold bushings blew out at the same time. Determined to get to the show, we duct taped the manifold together and limped on. Eight miles out from the show, the car began decelerating to a complete stop.
Prior to making the furthest drive yet, 200 miles to Solvang for the Meet in the middle, Dylan new it was time to kick the old single port. The oil spewing, compression losing, busted and rusted boxer engine was well passed its time. Out with the old, and in with the Vicbuilt High Rev 1776cc powerplant. At the same time we did a minor transmission raise to get the most engine clearance.
Overall each piece of the car has its own unique memory that can be reminisced upon just by simply looking at the car. With so much age, comes so much character. The Woahwgn is a never ending work in progress that chooses what it wants as it goes. To Dylan it is a part of his family that he doesnt picture himself without.
Tyler Martin - BKG Cofounder/Photographer/Designer/Writer