We work the bugs out of your Beetle.

17625 W Redrock Lane, Marana, AZ 85653  – in Avra Valley.
Check out our directions.

Welcome to Ernest’s Old Volkswerks! Volkswerks specializes in honest, reliable Volkswagen repair. We’ve been in the Tucson/Marana area for seven years, and have 23 years of old VW repair experience. We have a wide variety of vehicles and parts for sale, and have a wide variety of services including engine rebuilds, body repair, brakes, and simple tuneups. We have cars and car parts for sale, as well.

Below you can read some of our news, tips and tricks, and whatever else we’ve decided to post, really.

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Payments and Such

Dawn here with a clarification on our payment policies and other items that a few problem children have had issue with lately. So to make our life easier and to save on drama here we go.

First is type of payments that we accept.

-Cash. US currency. No Pesos, Euros, or Pounds.

-Checks. Made out to Ernest Calabro not Old Volkswerks. Jay’s bank is still working on getting the business name on the account. So until further notice no checks can be accepted made out to anyone other than Ernest Calabro.

-Paypal. We’ve had some problems with this payment type. We accept Paypal as a convenience to you not that we are not that big of a fan of Paypal. For those of you that don’t know Paypal charges a fee to the Payee for Paypal payments not the Payer. So we add the fee WE get charge back to the Payer since we accepted the this payment type as a courtesy to you.

Second is payments in general.

Since we had a few bad apples lately dropping off engines and cars for work then changing their minds after we’ve started repairs here is the policy from now to the end of time.

-NO work will start until you pay HALF of the estimated cost for repairs i.e. if your bill is going to cost around $300.00 we need half, $150.00, to start work. (We are happy to give you a written estimate upon request.) No work will start until we have receive half PERIOD. We have had to do this because a few people have dropped off engines or cars and we paid for parts for them and start repairs, they changed their minds and want to pick up and not pay anything for time and materials. NO MORE. We aren’t a large business and we can’t absorb the cost of parts paid for and time spend for nothing. If you change your mind after repairs have started and parts bought NO REFUND of the half down will be given. If you can’t make up your mind on what you want don’t waste our time.

Third is Labour costs.

- Bugs $65.00 per Hour

- Bus, Type 3 and Type 4 $75.00 per Hour

Forth item is Mobile Repair.

If you call wanting a mobile repair and we show up and you don’t have any work done just want a assessment or decide you can’t afford to have the work done it is NOT FREE. I’ve lost track of the times we were called to a car on the other side of Tucson and the owner getting upset when we hand then a bill for an hour of Labour. No $20.00 dollars for gas won’t cut it since that doesn’t even cover the gas we used to get there. See above for the labour rates. And if you do call wanting mobile repair please be sure your car as the following:

-Gas (We have had a few people call thinking we’re AAA. No we don’t deliver gas for free nor are we a mobile gas station).

-Oil (Sure we provide oil with oil changes and such but you don’t put any in it we can’t run it).

-Good charged battery (Had a few people thinking the same of batteries as gas once again WE ARE NOT AAA. We can’t tell if it can run if the battery is dead).

We don’t generally carry these items and it’s YOUR responsibility to make sure your car has these items in order for us to diagnose it’s running problems. So don’t get pissy with us if you can’t keep up on basis maintenance or we don”t have something with us to fix your car.

Fifth and final is storage of items.

We are not a free storage facility. If you do not pick up your car after repairs and have not made arrangements with us to store and we don’t hear back from you within one week storage fees will be applied. $50.00 per week will then be added to your bill after 6 months we instate a mechanic’s lien and after a year the car will be considered abandoned property. I’m sorry to do it but a few people have left cars here for over a year never calling, writing or anything then wanting to tow them out not paying us for anything. So no more.

In closing if you don’t agree with any of this please save me and Jay the hassle and go somewhere else.

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We may have heat stroke but we decided to have another great offer. So you’re going to LOVE this special.

1600cc Engine Rebuild (with a REBUILD-ABLE CORE or you get charge for a core) WITH Install $995.00+tax.

That’s right $995.00+tax a $300.00 SAVINGS!!!!!


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Winter Tune-Up Special (Bus and Bug only) for $99.00+tax. You get new plugs, points, valve cover gaskets, sump kit, and fresh oil.


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I’m ConFUSEd

Why oh why would someone do this? Fuses are made that if a short occurs in a wire going to the fuse box the fuse is “tripped” to disconnect the flow of power and stop an overheat. It may have seemed like a good idea at the time instead of buying a new fuse just put some old wires inside and reinstall them in the fuse box.

PLEASE please don’t rig your fuses they are made to fail for a reason. New fuses are cheaper than buying a new car after a fire!

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Oil, Oil everywhere but not a drop in my engine!

Hopefully you’ve never been one of the ones that have either heard a terrible metal crashing noise coming from their engine or your VW just comes to a slow and horrible stop never to restart again. Why the horror? NO OIL. Either because of a unnoticed or unchecked leak or opps you forgot to put oil in the engine.

Here’s some pictures of what happens inside your engine case when the good times end.

Poor case. Destroyed. Never to be reused again. Why? When the rod bearing spun the rod came off the crank and bounced around awhile and broke the cam. This motor heated up so hot without the cooling effects of oil it destroyed everything inside. CRACK. Pieces flying everywhere inside the case taking more chunks of metals off with it. RIP.

Here is the what is left of said cam. It should be one solid piece, now three very sad pieces of scrap. A very expensive lesson to learn. All the the fancy oil coolers, expensive oils, after market oil filters or sump extensions can’t help your motor if there’s no oil in it!


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We’ve added two new pages!!!

You’ll note that we have finally added two new pages to our site. Westy Wanderers and Projects Page. Westy Wanderers will be the page for all the Westy related information. Camping and travel tips plus fun info and great stories. We’ll even have group trips to local camping spots to help get the newbies use to their Bus or the old timers a chance to socialize.

The project page is where we’ll post story and pictures of old and new restorations, engine builds, a new series of posts titled What does this engine part do?, whatever project we want to share.

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Scam Alert (This is not a test)

Hello again everyone it’s Dawn with some more words of wisdom.

Recently I’ve noticed a very disturbing trend on the internet. On my recent views of sites like Craigslist I seen a few ads for “Part Sourcing” or “Part Locator” for VW parts. These people state that they can help you find and buy a part for a fee. Not buy a part for you but just tell you where you can locate a part then pay them a set amount for that information.

We here at Ernest’s don’t think that’s right. Why should someone get paid to give out information? Anytime you contact someone to find a part that should be FREE. We NEVER charge to help someone find a part we don’t have in stock. And if someone is working on the up and up they shouldn’t either.

In fact here’s some companies we refer to for parts we don’t have or carry in stock. This information is FREE. We don’t charge you or them to give their names out:

www.partsplaceinc.com – They’re a GREAT resource for Watercooled VW parts. Even NEW VW parts! I needed a cold start jet for my ’87 Cabrio and everyone in town said they couldn’t get one and no one was making them anymore. I called Parts Place not only did they have new ones but great pricing on the good used. I bought the used one and it worked just like new.

www.wolfsburgwest.com – Wonderful source for older VW parts. If you don’t need OEM they probably have what you need. Their website is clear on where the parts come from so you know if it’s made by Wolfsburg or from Germany etc.

www.mamotorworks.com – Great source for body panels if you can’t find any original pieces. Carry lots of new parts. My favorite is the Plug and Chug. It’s a cup holder that fits in the ashtray hole on ’68 and new VWs. It even has a cell phone holder on the front! It makes trips in my Westy a lot more fun. And for the older VWs they have cup holders to fit them too.

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Sharing the GOOD

Recently a customer started a blog following his reunion with his 1984 Vanagon and the road trip that followed. He’s posted pics of the journey to pick up his baby to the trials of driving the freeways in a VW. Also, there’s some great video of the “VW Yoda” himself Jay with words of advise that will make you laugh.

So check out Ryan Moore’s blog www.theguidetogood.com.

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We had a great time at this year’s Bugtoberfest at Chirco’s. We caught up with many long time customers and met some great new ones. If you didn’t get to go to this year’s no worries Chirco has one every year in October.

If you’d like to see pictures from this year’s show go on over to www.chirco.com. If they haven’t posted them yet give them a day or two to rest up after the show!

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