Introduction: How to Make a Wooden Toy Volkswagen Bus

About: Hello everyone! My name is Jolien, I'm 25 years old and I live in Belgium. I like to make stuff with my hands! This includes woodworking, painting, crafting,... Subscribe to my YouTube channel for more buil…

Hello everyone!

In this Instructable I will show you how you can make a wooden toy Volkswagen Bus! It's a beautiful gift for a friend who loves VW, or for yourself!


Tools I used:

- Jointer/planer

- Tablesaw

- Bandsaw

- Scroll saw

- Sander

- Drill press

Materials I used:

- Wood glue

- Superglue

- Clamps

Step 1: The Bodyparts of the Bus

Picture 1.: Rough cut your lumber and plane it down to the right thickness. You can find the thickness of the pieces in my plans. If you want my plans, you can become a Patron on my Patreon page:

Picture 2.: Transfer all the patterns onto the wood. Cut out all the pieces on the bandsaw or at the scroll saw. I'm using double-sided tape to cut the identical pieces at the same time.

Picture 3.: Cut away the middle seat at one of these two pieces.

Picture 4.: Cut away the middle seat at one of these two pieces.

Picture 5.: Sand all the curves smooth with the dremel.

Step 2: Glue-up of the Body

Picture 1.: Glue the 5 middle pieces together. I'm using a combination of wood glue and superglue.

Picture 2.: You can see the glue-up is pretty uneven, so even it all out on the bandsaw.

Picture 3.: Clean up all the bandsawmarks and sand everything smooth, especially the seats.

Picture 4.: I made a design error, so I'll cut the front piece off. Otherwise there is no place for the legs of the driver.

Picture 5.: I'm using 30mm wheels. I'm giving them some shape on my belt sander and sanding them smooth in my drill.

Picture 6.: After you've glued in the wheels with a 6mm dowel, you can glue on the sides of the body. Glue it on with woodglue, super glue and put some clamps on it. When the glue is dry, round over the edges at the back of the bus.

Step 3: Shaping of the Body

Picture 1.: Give the sides a little bit more shape at the belt sander, so it will be a bit more round like a real VW Bus.

Picture 2.: Cut out the bottom and top of the windows at an angle, I don't know anymore which angle I used. The windows itself you can cut out without an angle.

Picture 3.: For the windowtrim you'll need 3 pieces of 7mm x 8mm. Cut two of the pieces to length for the sides of the bus. Glue the windows and the windowtrims together. Glue on the windows to the body with wood glue and superglue. The third piece of windowtrim is for the back, like you can see on picture nr. 4.

Picture 5.: Drill a 3mm hole for the steering wheel.

Step 4: The Front of the Bus

Let's make the front of the VW Bus out of two pieces of wood for the contrast, just like we did with the body.

Cut out the bottom piece first on the bandsaw. Sand the inside of it smooth and transfer the shape of the inside onto a lighter piece of wood for the top piece. Cut it out on the bandsaw. Adjust the shape of the top piece on the belt sander, so it fits perfectly with the bottom piece.

Now we need to make the bottom piece a little bit more round on the bandsaw and the belt sander.

Picture 1.: Transfer the shape onto the top piece and draw a new line beside it (so the top piece is a little bit thicker than the bottom piece). Cut it out on the bandsaw and glue the two pieces together.

Picture 2.: Drill 2 x 8mm holes and 2 x 5mm holes for the headlights. You can use 8mm and 5mm dowels for the headlights.

Picture 3.: Glue on the front with wood glue and superglue. Sand the sides flush with the body.

Step 5: The Bumpers and the Roof

Picture 1.: Transfer the front of the bus onto 7mm thick wood, draw a line beside it and tadaa you have your bumper! Cut it out on the bandsaw. Do the same on the back of the bus. Sand them smooth and glue them on.

Before you glue on the roof, put some oil on the inside.

Picture 2.: For the roof we'll need 10mm thick wood. Transfer the shape of the roof onto the wood and cut it out on the bandsaw.

Picture 3.: We are now going to shape the roof on the belt sander, this can take a while to get it nicely round.

Cut off a little piece of the rest of the windowtrim (7mm x 8mm), this will serve as a partition for the window at the front. Glue it on and after that you can glue on the roof.

Step 6: Finishing Touch

Picture 1.: I made two rear lights with 2 contrasting pieces of wood.

For the mirrors I made 12mm plugs out of 4mm plywood. I gave them shape with the dremel sanding drum and I've added a toothpick as a support. Drill 3mm holes in the body for the mirrors and glue them in.

As an extra touch I made a luggage rack with surfboards out of old skateboards. You can watch my video on YouTube for further instructions on that.

Feel free to subscribe to my YouTube Channel to see more of my toys!

Thank you!

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