JC Whitney probably just drop ships and really has no “techs” that would measure a shock for you. Check out http://www.rockauto.com Search for Monroe p/n 31538 and click on More Info. It gives the specs of the shock. I order from Rock Auto all the time. They are repuatable and quick.
These VW front suspension (beams with trailing arms) are pretty simple, but very well designed for the application they were used for. The only improvement over the years that I recall was addition of ball joints versus the older style king pins.
Keith is absolutely correct, the ball joint eccentric adjusts the camber. The caster is minimally affected by this. The mounting of the beam actually sets the “real” caster.
I never liked the tie rod set up (one real long/one real short) on these front ends, but the trail arm design of the front suspension minimizes the severe bump steer on one front wheel that is usually caused by this design.
In the late 70’s I cut the front end out of a Pinto, crossmember and all. I mounted it in a ’72 Super Beetle. I had to fabricate a simple plate to mount the upper “A” Arm and weld it to the Pinto crossmember. I also had to fabricate a shaft to go from the VW steering column to the Pinto steering rack. I put 13″ x 7″ aluminum wheels on the car all around, 4 bolt Ford in front and 4 bolt VW in the rear. The car handled like a sports car, but was slower than snot! The Pinto/Mustang II front end is still very popular today with the Street Rod fraternity.
The Super Beetle had a completely different front end design based on a MacPherson Strut. The Super Beetle used the same rear suspension as a “regular” Beetle.
My first “Pink MG” (now Angelica) was a Super Beetle based CMC kit. It came with a “bulkhead” that welded into the Super Beetle floor pan’s front “spine”. I suppose this could have been welded in to set more caster without using shims, but my floor pan already had this done when I got the car. For that matter, another Pinto/Mustang II front end would have been the ticket! My 1940 Ford Tudor Sedan has a “tubular” Pinto/Mustang II front end.
Let us know what you think of the ride when you get on road.