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1974 VW Beetle bumper brackets

I have a 1974 VW Beetle that I’m restoring and the bumper brackets are in poor condition. Beginning in 1974, VW changed the bumper brackets to a shock absorber style to meet US safety regulations, but unfortunately, they absolutely cannot be found in the aftermarket. No one rebuilds them and no one makes aftermarket copies. They are the rarest of the rare in VW parts. I only have 2 options: 1) scour every junkyard and swap meet in america in hopes of finding a set of bumper brackets that are in less poor condition than my own or 2) rebuild the brackets myself. I am pretty sure I can straighten out the bent parts and maybe strip the paint and gunk and repaint them. The problem with that is that the rubber sleeves that cover the joint between the 2 halves of the “sock absorber” are rotting away. There are holes and cracks and overspray from a previous paint job all over them.

I’ve grown tired of the 15 year hunt for replacement brackets. I’ll concede defeat on that front. So I think I’ll try my best at rebuilding them myself. I can’t seem to find any options for replacing the rubber sleeves. I’m pulling my hair out over this. Can anyone point me in a direction that can solve my problem?

Reverting to a pre-1974 bumper bracket is not an option.

For such a specific question you need to join and post it on thesamba.com, the vw site - have you heard of it?

A picture would help, but maybe try these guys-seem to have a lot of parts: http://www.mtmfg.com/beetle.shtml

You can always try to improvise by finding another similar part, molding a new one, etc. I had the 59 where you would have to buy the bracket repair piece and weld it to the body to keep the bumper from falling off. Bumpers weren’t VW’s finest design.

mtmfg.com had the sleeves I needed! It is sad that a major piece of safety equipment is no longer being made or even after-market repros.

The rubber sleeves I found work perfectly; however, the front brackets are in really bad shape and I need to replace them. I still cannot find anyone who has them. I did find someone who only has a couple rear brackets, but the front and rear brackets are quite different from each other.
I still need to find someone who sells bumper brackets for my 1974 VW Beetle.

Well, if you’re really desparate, find a shop to fabricate some heavy metal brackets to correctly mount your bumper. They won’t have the shock absorbing function, but that was to minimize body damage in the event of a low speed (less than 5 mph) crash. It’s not a safety function.