Little known fact but I was actually the 5th Kraftwerk. You don't hear much about me because the 5th member was tasked with guarding the jellybean bowl.
So dawn broke on a lovely day replete with comfortably warm temperatures, clear skies and dry ground, great for working on top of. Obviously, I chose to spend it in the basement.
This welcomed me:
A mess, but workable. I just needed to clear enough space to work on the spring plates. I cleaned up the ass end of the pan and got to work, installing the high falutin' spring plate compression tool supplied by Atomwerk:
But the grade .25 nut got it's threads in a bind, leaving me no choice but to get drastic:
This left me no option but to do it like the rest of the unwashed masses, using a floor jack:
It took me A LOT of tries to get everything sorted. First try, I didn't thread the cover plate's bolts and it was under too much tension to do after setting the plate. Second effort resulted in me forgetting antiseize on the outer splined end of the torsion rod. Third try was because I'm obviously just a masochist killing time the only way I know how. Eventually, I got it figured out though.
I took the time to swap the bolts for grade 8 hardware. You can see how bad the bolt had deteriorated due to trapped water and mud in those plates:
With the passenger side done, it was time to work on the other side. There wasn't a lot of room to work over there, thanks to a transaxle and engine hanging out in close proximity so I wasn't looking forward to doing it. To add salt, this one was even more stuck than the last. Heat, hammers and lots of levers were employed and at one time, I sunk to the level of threatening the plate with a cut off wheel:
But I stepped away for a bit to have a think. I used the time to prime the test wheel from the blast cabinet. First I had to weld a couple holes that someone had drilled in the wheel. I guess it was some goofball attempt at affixing a hubcap. There were only two spaced directly across from each other and one still had half of a wood screw stuck in it:
Eventually, I hit it with some sandpaper, air, alcohol and finally primer:
Then I went to hit the spring plate for a bit more. Eventually, I got that damned thing off:
So I hit it with the wire wheel, some antiseize and reasembled in reverse order of removal:
Leaving me with some lowered spring plates:
I've still got the front end to deal with, which I'm looking forward to even less as that involves more angles and maths. If I had the money, I would totally just buy one of those turnkey narrowed front ends that get advertised on the Samba. Since that's not in the cards, however, I'm just going to try to put it together in a manner that won't cause loss of life.