CC Outtakes: Two Yellow 1971 California Beetles

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Not surprisingly, Beetles are not exactly rare sights in CA, although the density in Eugene is much higher. This one was hard to miss; re-paint by Kelly-Moore? I’m thinking it’s a 1971, but possibly a 1972 as I didn’t shoot the engine lid. The ’72s had four sets of air vents on it; the ’71s just two.

The other one was a bit easier to date.

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This is a very original 1971 Beetle, showing the many decades of life near the beach. I shot it in Half Moon Bay just a short stroll down the beach from where we were staying. But its license plate frame tells its provenance.

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Oops; I cut it off. But its from San Luis Obispo, on the Central California coast. It looks like one of a million of these when I first came out to CA in the early 70s.

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The rust patterns are interesting. They suggest that the paint was abraded on front-facing surfaces; perhaps by the sand? And then the surface rust sets in. But VWs are built out of fairly thick gauge steel, so it takes a while for any actual penetration to happen. Unless one lives right at the beach, of course.

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Is the owner a former flower child?

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Which has more horsepower; the VW or that group of trail riders?