Rasta was origionally purchased in Holland where she served it's family well driving them through out Europe, they shipped back here to the states later when they moved back.
I purcahsed Rasta back in 1985 for $600.00 and it changed my life, and so I chaged it into an art car!
Email from the previous owner (5/20/10)
"I am very much enjoying your restoration project, as well as the earlier photos and video of the old van! We bought it in 1967 in Holland, as a bare-bones, no-frills "delivery van", and had the dealer install the one rearmost bench seat as an extra. I also remember having to pay in cash, literally, with a big wad of Dutch 100-Guilder notes (worth about $28 each).|
Then my wife and I "finished off" the interior with paneling and whatnot. It served us well in Europe until we returned to the US in 1969 (we drove it in Holland, Germany, Norway, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Italy and Austria). Then we had it shipped to the US via the ports of Rotterdam and Richmond, CA, (through the Panama Canal?) for us to continue using while we lived in San Francisco, until early 1972. It made a lot of great trips around California, hitting state and federal parks, etc. (the kids were small and we did a lot of camping). Then we drove it to Texas and it continued in service for many years until you bought it.
As far as the seats go, I can't remember whether we had them recovered or not -- I think so, but I can't help you any more than that. I know I worked on it a good deal, both mechanically and appearance-wise. Charles and I had the engine out a few times and I replaced countless worn parts :o) One of my colleagues at work said that after 20 years or so, it's not maintenance anymore, it's restoration ;o) I will try to browse my old slides and photos to see what else I can dig up. One ironic point I remember is having to get the European halogen headlights swapped out for US-standard sealed-beam ones (this was 1969). Now, of course, the halogen ones are standard here, too. I also had to get the tempered-glass front windshield replaced with laminated glass to meet US standards. I escaped emissions control stuff since it was so old, although at least it had a crankcase fumes recycling system.
I wish you luck and success on your project. Keep me posted, if you don't mind.
1989 Art Car Parade
1991 Art Car Parade
1995 Art Car Parade
2001 Art Car Ball in the Astrodome!
2001 in front of my old office
2007 art car parade
Testament - The New Order (1988) Video for Nobody's Fault! they use Rasta all over the place in this video!