Hello from Calgary, Canada


New member
Hello everyone.

Originally my wife and I owned a 88 camper. We had a number of great years in it with the kids, but i sold it twenty years ago to create a survival fund as I started a business.

Fast forward twenty years and it was time to repurchase a Westy. After a fairly detailed search we found a 1986 180 km gem under our noses here in Calgary. The original owned had reached an age where he could no longer drive the vehicle, and sold it to the German mechanic who had serviced it for many years. I understand that the old fellow cried as he handed over the keys. We bought it from the mechanic and have spent the last year of so upgrading it, trying for "system" approach, to the extent that my skills and budget allow.

After a full tune up with belts etc. the first upgrades were focused on safety...
16' wheels, tires, HD gas shocks, upgraded head lights, gas tank replacement, fuel line replacement.

The next area of focus was the cooling system.
Replaced all hoses, including heater core and related hoses ( had that sucker (heater box) out three time after leaving one of the leads off to the new fan motor)).

Then went for a bit of comfort/convenience
Added GW dual battery kit. New Propex heater. Stereo. Double GW mattresses. Hose kit/facet for the sink.

I recently discovered that my O2 sensor has been unplugged, which explains the fairly dismal mileage that I have been getting. Plugging in the sensor results in erratic idle, so I know that I have some knowledge to gain and time to spend on the idle control system.

My wife of 38 years and I have two kids with four grandchildren, all here in Calgary. The van, for the second time in our lives, has become a nice gathering point for family as we head out for summer weekend trips.

My wife and I have enjoyed a couple of trouble solo free trips down the Oregon/California coast and a second outing to the BC west coast, to the Whistler and related area through the back route via Pemberton (THAT is a nice drive). We look forward to additional trips now that we have a bit more free time.

Anyway, that is my intro. Glad to be part of the group.

John Amonson


New member
Hello John,
I am new to the forum and just getting caught up on some topics. Great story about your new project van and the good times it will bring you.

I have a ‘83 Westy that is also receiving replacement parts and servicing. Had an erratic ‘surging’ idle that kicked in about 5 minutes after a cold start, then smoothed out when fully warmed up.

Replaced the Mass Air Flow Meter with a rebuilt unit, replaced fuel injectors and then finally when I replaced the O2 sensor, the surging (mostly) disappeared. Also adjusted the idle speed stop for slightly higher RPMs and adjust the idle bleed air screw to smooth the idle.
Interestingly, I could induce the ‘surging’ again by over-adjusting the idle bleed air screw on the throttle body. I think the rough idle / surging is air flow related, somehow. All air intake systems past the Mass Air Flow meter must be checked.