Susie Q Hi Top Motor Build

Getting the Hi Top back on the road

Our new Bus Junkies bus Susie Q came to us in mysterious fashion when our friend Sak from Thailand picked her up in Arizona and brought her back into the limelight by sharing his travels and her adventures with us on Facebook. He traveled the Arizona deserts in her as well as the Southern California coasts and Northern California Mountains. He came to visit the Bus Junkies in Felton California a small mountain town near Santa Cruz and we bonded over our love of buses and this old Hi Top named Susie Q.

We said goodbye to Sak and Susie unaware that he would be coming back to Santa Cruz and staying near the Mystery Spot right here in SC. He was working in a cool boutique VW Bus shop in Salinas with our new Jedi mechanic friend Deano. Sometime the universe provides interesting scenarios and mysterious opportunities that are right in line with the heart and mind. When Saki mentioned he might have to return to Thailand to be with his family and wanted the Junkies to have first shot at Susie Q we jumped. She spoke to us in all the right ways, knowing she would still need lots of love to reveal her true potential.

We took our friend to the airport and got Susie Q home. She was running tired but and our friend Deano said bring her back over and we will sort it out. We limped Susie Q back towards the Mystery Garage and in true VW fashion, her tired old motor sucked in two valves on the cheap Chinese heads and left her running poorly on two cylinders before we made it out of Felton. Poor girl was ready for a transformation and it was now up to us. Our master motor builder Deano said let's finish building her a replacement motor. We know we are in good hands with Deano…he is meticulous about details and has been building engines and VW's for over 30 years.

While it is tragic that Susie is down, we are confident that the new build which we are participating in (built not bought hehe) will be a tight little 1641 sewing machine engine and with the old core we can dream up a larger motor in our spare time so we are ready next time this might happen. Deano has been a lifesaver and great friend to the BUs Junkies since we have known him. We hope we can return the favor 😀

In the meantime we are taking inventory of Susie's needs wants and likes. She is a pretty old girl with good dry bones from a desert life. She will be brought back by the Junkies and given new suspension, motor, curtains, solar panels, reconditioned hitop, some interior refinements like the awesome Traffic Cox short shifter and some much needed TLC all around. Can't wait to show her off. She is an attention hound 😀

She has been detailed with the amazing products we got from Auto Finesse and is looking much brighter and cleaner all around. We added a ton of stickers we had been saving for this moment and she is quickly looking the part of Bus Junkies ambassador bus! Stay tuned for her further adventures and motor build details as we go and keep cruzin!

3 replies
  1. Steve
    Steve says:

    i wish i could find a good engine builder in the Austin area. Might have to move back to Cali just to get my old shop back, German Dreams in Bakersfield, CA!

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