Riding High Rolling Low
VW CAMPER & BUS|May 2019

When this Bay’s owner passed away, a good friend stepped up to take it to the next level

Mark Walker

The Highroof Bus you see here first popped up on my radar on Instagram. Being a lover of all things slammed and original paint, I flipped out over this Bus and stalked @aircoolednomads Instagram feed, before sending Editor James the pics and formulating a plan to get it into Camper&Bus.

Owner Steve Buton is by no means new to VWs, having been into them for many years. In that time he’s amassed an enviable collection of cars, including a 1959 Beetle, 1960 Ragtop Bug, ’64 Karmann Ghia Convertible, 1966 Single Cab and this 1969 Highroof. Steve says: “I spent so many years going to shows and never owned a Bus, but now I have this one, I can’t believe what I was missing out on for all those years”.

Just how Steve managed to become the owner of this Bus is a sad story. Those of you who’ve been in the VW scene for a while may be familiar with Randee ‘Randar’ Pickton, who set-up Randar wheels a few decades ago in California and was really well known in the VW scene.

As well as making his own custom wheels, Randee was an avid VW collector and always had a few local cars on his radar that he was trying to buy. He spotted this Bus in a backyard in Ramona, California while out VW hunting with his daughter Aubree and it took months of building a friendship with the owner before he finally agreed to sell it.

Taking stock When Randee dragged it home and took stock, he already knew the route he was going to take with the Bus; it was one of those rare finds (nowadays), in that it was original paint but needed zero rust repair, so it was the perfect basis on which to build a badass Camper. It didn’t take long before a 4-inch narrowed link pin beam was fitted, along with a pair of dropped spindles.

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