PLEASE NOTE: I have dug up this artical out of Web Archives. This is NOT my article. Sadly, The pictures are thumbnail's that I retrieved through google images. If anyone has the original images, please forward them to me at raiden AT so thatI can replace these as the quality is not that great.


VW Type II 091 Transmission Conversion
Article from August '92 Hot VWs

Installing a Type II transmission into a Type I is easier than ever with a new urethane mounting kit from Barrett Enterprises. The large Type II transmission has become the gearbox of choice for many racers in the off-road and drag VW scenes. Just take one look at this (comparatively) behemoth transmission and you can easily see why. On the outside the case itself is much larger and stronger, but all the goodies on the inside are just as robust. The Type II hypoid ring and pinion is huge and much stronger in comparison to the straight line Type I. And with a ring and pinion ration of 5.375 and 4.85:1, its low stock gearing is just about perfect for off-road use with those jumbo tires. Drag racers have found that with all the new first through fourth aftermarket gears that are now available for the Type II trans, they can enjoy the benefits of the large ring and pinion, yet still retain almost the same gearing they enjoyed with the Type I transmission. With so much going for it, the Type II swap into a Type I was a natural, and people have been converting their Baja Bugs and drag cars for years. To help simplify this popular conversion, Barrett Enterprises has developed a new bolt-in kit that allows the installation of a '69 or newer bus transmission into the IRS Type I chassis. The key to the conversion is a trick set of transmission mounts that use strong urethane bushings. Unlike many other kits that are designed for competition use only, the urethane bushings in Barrett's mounts make it the perfect setup for the street. Installation of this new kit is just about as simple as installing a Type I trans, although there is a small amount of clearancing needed between the frame horns. However, a ball-peen hammer and a few minutes are all that is needed to get the clearancing job done. Once installed, the Type II transmission shifer coupler is in the exact same location as the Type I, allowing the stock shift rod connection to be used. The only difference in this setup is that the shift coupler doesn't have the hole for the rod coupling set screw, but if the set screw is replaced with a standard screw with a flat head, it is said to work great. Just be sure to set both the trans and shifter in reverse when tightening the screw to be sure the linkage is aligned. The completed installation also raises the engine just over one inch, giving added engine clearance to off-roaders. Once installed, you may be wondering how the bus transmission is connected to the Bug stub axles. Actually, there are a couple of methods of accomplishing this. Perhaps the easiest way is to simply purchase new shorter axles from Sway-A-Way that have the perfect length for use with the wide bus CVs on the trans, and the narrow Bug CVs on the stub axle. But you can also use the CVs, axles and stub axles from a VW Thing (Type 181), which are a direct bolt on. One of the drawbacks on this installation is that it does nothing to improve the shifting of the bus transmission, which is infamously sloppy. Basically, you can forget lightening fast drag shifts. But for casual off-roading and street use it is fine (Buses have been using it without problems for years)! If you're considering installing a larger bus transmission into your Type I chassis, then this kit may be the hot ticket. With easy to install quality urethane mounts it can make for one smooth conversion, both during and after the swap.

The first part of the project is to remove the old stock Type I transmission, clean the area and then bolt the new conversion rear mounting bracket to the floor pan.

A matching bracket with the urethane bushing is then bolted to the bus trans. If the nose cone studs stick out further than 3/4" they must be replaced with bolts.

Remove the original four studs from the bottom rear of the trans case and with the longer studs provided, bolt the new rear mounting plate to the trans.

Before setting the larger trans in place, it is necessary to clearance the frame horns slightly. This can easily be accomplished by bending the lip on both sides downwards. It may also be necessary to clearance the frame horn slightly around the CV joint.

The stock shift coupler is used, although the bus hockey stick does not have the hole for the set screw. A standard screw with a flat tip must be used. The bus trans shift coupler fits into the stock hole in the pan.

With the trans in place, the other half of the rear mount is bolted to the pan using the original bolts, and then the two plates bolted together through the urethane mount.

The installed mount.

With either Sway-A-Way axles or Thing (Type 181) CVs and axles, the bus transmission fits almost like the stock unit. The only difference is the engine now sits 1" higher and 1/2" further back.

Links to other "bus to bug" transaxle conversion articles
Paul's Baja Buggy Page