Hey-Burner: Jens’s 1968 VW Type 2 Camper

Words by Nick Skinner & Jens Lyphout / Photos by Law Raw Photography & Howygraphx

Ok, so this is “Hey-Burner”. Our series of mid-week ‘readers rides’ from the Hayburner community. We take your submissions from our social media platforms and put them out there on the Hayburner website for the world to enjoy. The first – Jens Lyphout.

Jens is an an industrial cleaner from Belgium. But, when he’s not busy working on other peoples machinery he can be found working and tinkering on his own classic rides with the help of his brother. This 1968 VW Type2 isn’t his first foray into the classic German world.

Along with the Type2, Jens has built and owned several classic Audi’s (and even runs a VAG group with his brother called Union Brothers) but in his own words “I bought my bus 1 year ago, but I’ve been a big fan of air-Cooled VW’s for much longer.

Jens’s Type2 made its way to Belgium from Wolfsburg (via America for most of its life). Originally built in 1967, but officially first registered in 1968 – It wears its 55 years incredibly well. On the outside, Jens decided to never hide that fact. The van was completely gone through from front to back by Jens and his brother, but one thing had to remain – its patina. That collection of knocks, scratches, imperfections and blemishes that can only be truly made from years out in an environment. From the classic ‘sunburn’ of the dry American cars to the ‘frostbite’ of the Northern European cars. All of that history, had to be kept on the ’68 Type2.

To begin with, Jens and his brother completely disassembled the whole bus to make the inspection of the bus easier and more in-depth. Checking where new sheet-metal was to be needed and any other repairs to the classic Aircooled bus. During this, the brothers found the entire cabin and cargo floor would need to be cut out and be replaced. Checking everything, Jens also found the fuel tank of the Type2 was completely rotted out, so it too was replaced.

Starting off with the repairs, they replaced the battery tray as well as some repairs on the flanks – All of this was done after the entire bottom of the bus was sandblasted to reveal any nasties that may have been hidden over time. With the bottom of the bus cut, welded, shaped and ready – it had several coats of primer and rust protector before before finished up.

Whilst working underneath the Type2, Jens assembled the new much lower spring plates which he welded up himself along with completely rebuilding the steering gear on the bus so when the time came, everything was 100% right to hit the road safely and in complete style.

Speaking of hitting the road safely, Jens and his brother completely rebuilt the Type2’s drum brake system back to original condition to make sure it stopped straight and stopped properly. This was also to help with the motor that the brothers had built for the bus. Nothing extreme – a solid and reliable 1641 running a single carburettor mated up to the bus’s original gearbox for the extra-power and to make sure it retained that unmatched reliability.

Inside, Jens has made the ’68 Type2 not only good-looking but really practical. He enjoys going camping with the bus and attending VW shows around Belgium so it all had to work properly. The job of fitting and making the interior was handed over to a friend of Jens’s who could do the job and the results are awesome. The Dorothee interior from TMI matched with the Rock’n’Roll bed make the bus really usable for what Jens wants out of his classic VW. On a side note – the white and red curtains were made by Jens, under the watchful eye of his Mum, to finish off the look of the interior.

The bus was also treated to a new headlining and every window has new rubber seals. And now that it was back in the EU, it was fitted up with European headlights.

Jens said about the project “It costs me blood, sweat and tears sometimes but it was all worth it.” A perfect summation of building a project based around the owners specific needs and style for their car.

Jens summed up his approach to this project and his others like this: “They are very unique. I just like to give old cars a new life.” – and it’s a good way to look at it. We all build projects to suit our own styles and tastes. Just like this Bus – it has been built around what Jens needed but also just ticks all the right boxes for us.

Click here to submit you car for a future ‘Hey-Burner’! or send your email over to nick@hayburner.co.uk

Jens Lyphout - '68 VW Type2