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Thread: My 1964 Electra Project

  1. #1

    My 1964 Electra Project

    Since I'm new around here I thought I would post to let everyone know what I'm working and if see if anyone had any tips or words of encouragement...or to tell me I got screwed...haha

    2 weeks ago I was out driving around and saw this sad looking buick electra parked in someone's yard. It wasn't for sale but it had "assumed the position" so that it might have been for sale or might not have. After about a week I decided to stop and knock on the door. The guy was very nice but the car wasn't currently for sale. He asked me for my name and number and he would think about it and call me back. He calls me back about a week later and says that he's ready to deal.

    Here she was as I found her in the guy's yard....she's very sad looking.

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    So $1200 dollars later and 75$ for a tow she arrived at my house. Even tho it was 9:45pm on Saturday I wanted to see what she looked like under all that crud. So I busted out the garden hose and some sponges and started scrubbing all of that stuff off.

    Almost 2 hours later this is what she looked like.

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    The next day I was up early working on the interior, until my dad could swing by and help me with the engine. We were able to determine that the fuel pump had gone bad and we were able to find a replacement locally. So we got her started and could "yard drive"

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    The Good:
    It starts and you can yard drive it.

    The Bad:
    The engine sounds great, except for this annoying little tick. It's not a knock but a tick. We changed the oil because it was as thin as water, but my dad says it sounds like a lifter might be stuck in the rear right cylinder. The car doesn't have a single issue starting or idling, but you always hear this tick. I have new Valve cover gaskets ordered so we can take the valves off to see if anything is stuck in there. The guy said the car had been sitting only 9 months BUT the oil filter I took off was discontinued 7 years ago so i tend to believe it was sitting longer than that.

    The expected:
    Someone messed with the radio at some point and now it's not working.
    the courtesy light on the dash and glovebox does not work. The wires are not hot so I think they messed them up trying to fiddle with the radio.
    Tires need replaced from sitting
    needs a new muffler
    front seat needs to have new upholstery

    All in all i'm happy with it for $1200 bucks and I plan to take as long as needed to fix it up. It was not bought to be a showcar, i want to drive it!

    Does anyone know of any Buick guys around Charlotte NC? I would LOVE for someone to swing by one day to give me some pointers on what i can do to get her fixed up. Especially if I can find out what that tick is.

  2. #2
    Proud BCA Member buick5563's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Nice car, great price!!!
    Somebody from NC will chime in soon enough.
    Welcome aboard.
    Mike Middleton

    http://www.midtownrestorations.com
    Regional Co-Director South Central Region BCA
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    1955 Special 2 dr. sedan (BCA Gold Senior Driver)
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    1931 Model A hot rod

  3. #3
    Brian DePouli, BCA #8927 38Buick 80C's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Hello Joseph. Great car. I got your email too and sent you a response.
    Brian DePouli
    1930 Buick Series 61,
    1938 Buick Roadmaster 80C

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    Buick Club of America Past President '11-'12
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  4. #4
    Senior Member my3buicks's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    I always thought the 64's were really elegant Electra's - another year that in my opionion they out Cadillac'd Cadillac.
    Keith Bleakney
    Club affiliations: Lambda Car Club International , AACA, BCA #11475
    1967(3517) Special Deluxe Hardtop AACA/BCA Sr - Blue Mist/Arctic White
    1972 Buick Centurion Conv Orange/white
    1990 Buick Reatta red/tan
    Subaru Outback L L Bean H6
    We could learn a lot from crayons. Some are sharp, some are pretty,and some are dull.Some have weird names, and all are different colors. But they all have to live in the same box.

  5. #5

    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Argh, I can't figure out this tick...it drives me batty...lol

  6. #6
    Ben Bruce BCA# 44599 First Born's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Nice car. Good luck with it. But the wheel covers!!
    We would welcome you to join the Buick Club of America. And you just missed our yearly bash, in Concord this time

    Ben
    1995 Park Ave
    1950 Super Mod 52
    1950 Special Mod 41D Second owner

  7. #7

    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Quote Originally Posted by First Born View Post
    Nice car. Good luck with it. But the wheel covers!!
    We would welcome you to join the Buick Club of America. And you just missed our yearly bash, in Concord this time

    Ben
    Are the Wheel covers bad?

  8. #8

    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    These were hanging in the window when i got home...haha
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  9. #9
    Ben Bruce BCA# 44599 First Born's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Quote Originally Posted by trafalger View Post
    Are the Wheel covers bad?
    Ah, not really. That is something a lot of us changed back in the distant pass to be an individual. And most ended up with the SAME change. But those [mid '90s??] just don't look right to me. But, hey, if they float your boat, so be it. Still one of my favorite body styles. I had a '66 Electra 225 4 door Hardtop. Probably my favorite all time car.

    Ben
    1995 Park Ave
    1950 Super Mod 52
    1950 Special Mod 41D Second owner

  10. #10

    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    I actually don't like them but I thought they were stock. I'll take them off tonight!

  11. #11
    Senior Member wmsue's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Congrats on the fine car.
    I have a 65 Electra Conv that I've been working on for many years and finally got running this summer.

    You mentioned that you have a valve cover gasket set, you'll also need a pushrod cover gasket to get access to the lifters. Lifters and pushrods are available from AutoZone special order. Price is good on them too.

    Great car.
    Thanks for the info.
    Bill
    BCA - AACA - WOKR
    Kinsman, Ohio
    65 Buick Electra Conv.
    95 Ford Ranger 2WD
    13 Mini Cooper Conv.
    Looking for next project...

  12. #12
    Senior Member Centurion's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Great car! Please keep us updated.

    Here's a '64 that is wearing the original, correct-style wheelcovers. Click to see a larger image.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Brian Laurance, BCA #5168

    1959 Buick Electra 4-door hardtop
    1971 Buick Centurion Formal Coupe
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  13. #13

    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Great thanks!

    I'll see if i can find those online somewhere.

    Quote Originally Posted by Centurion View Post
    Great car! Please keep us updated.

    Here's a '64 that is wearing the original, correct-style wheelcovers. Click to see a larger image.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  14. #14
    Proud BCA Member buick5563's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Put a request in the Buy / Sell section. Often times, you will get a better deal through the forum. eBay will have em occasionally too. Unless they are pristine, try to get em for $20 each
    Mike Middleton

    http://www.midtownrestorations.com
    Regional Co-Director South Central Region BCA
    Vice Director Alamo Chapter BCA
    Assistant Chairman BCA Driven Class

    1955 Special 2 dr. sedan (BCA Gold Senior Driver)
    1955 Century convertible (Updates at Me and My Buick http://forums.aaca.org/f163/55-centu...ct-272999.html)
    1955 Century Estate Wagon (Driven Hard and Fast)
    1948 Buick powered hot rod
    1931 Model A hot rod

  15. #15

    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Look what I found in the trunk

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  16. #16
    Ben Bruce BCA# 44599 First Born's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Great!! Those will look better, IMO.

    Ben
    1995 Park Ave
    1950 Super Mod 52
    1950 Special Mod 41D Second owner

  17. #17
    Proud BCA Member buick5563's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Looks like a Road Wheel in the bottom of the pic.
    Mike Middleton

    http://www.midtownrestorations.com
    Regional Co-Director South Central Region BCA
    Vice Director Alamo Chapter BCA
    Assistant Chairman BCA Driven Class

    1955 Special 2 dr. sedan (BCA Gold Senior Driver)
    1955 Century convertible (Updates at Me and My Buick http://forums.aaca.org/f163/55-centu...ct-272999.html)
    1955 Century Estate Wagon (Driven Hard and Fast)
    1948 Buick powered hot rod
    1931 Model A hot rod

  18. #18
    Senior Member buick840's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Great car you've found there..........I'm sure you will enjoy it.

    If the car has been unused for a long time the sound you are describing seems to me to a lifter problem.
    Others here may be better qualified to offer suggestions to remedy the problem but before opening up the engine try some simple things first.

    You say that you've put fresh oil in the car which is a start............ using a fresh lot of modern oil may help free up that noisy lifter (if that's what it is) Take it for a lengthy drive if you are able to and see if using the car helps getting fresh clean oil into those lifters......if it still has that tick you could try changing the oil a couple of times after running it to clean out that old oil ..............might do the trick.

    Of course if the noise is more of a knock than a tick then you would be best to have a good mechanic check it for you to try to diagnose if it is something more serious.

    If it's not a high mile engine those nailheads are super reliable and I'm hoping it's just the lifters.


    Those original caps that you found in the trunk are some of the nicest styled caps that Buick used in the 60's (IMO) and boy are they well made and solid. The other option is to find a set of Chrome Road wheels/ Rally wheels. looks like you have at least one in the trunk. they were an option in 64 and really transform the car.............they look very cool..........look at the photo below

    As said before if you want to look for caps or the Chrome Road Wheels then try posting a wanted advert on this forum. Great bunch of people here with the same keen interest in Buicks that you are showing.


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    Last edited by buick840; August 15th, 2012 at 05:51.

    Brian Flynn,
    Victoria, Australia
    ----------------
    BCA Member 42088
    Buick Car Club of Australia (Vic)

    1934 8/40 Sedan
    1955 Special Riviera 2 Door Hardtop

  19. #19

    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Just wanted to update here as well....the tick is gone!!

    Before MM Oil:

  20. #20

    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    After MM Oil:

  21. #21

    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    The wheel in the trunk is a rim that the Previous Owner said he wanted to put on the car but couldn't find the other 3. I don't really know the history of it or what it is.

    I only have 2 wheel covers and they're pitted really bad in between the blades, so if I can find 4 better looking ones that would be swell. Until then i'll be rolling with those solid covers :-/

  22. #22

    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    So here is a good one for you all..to the Mystery Machine!

    My Dad and I were discussing last nite over what kinda car the Electra really is.

    Here is our issue.

    The car is a 4 door hard top electra 225 w/ a Wildcat engine (offically). BUT I've seen it mentioned on these forums that only the convertible came with Fender skirts. And on the wiki it says that the convertible only came with power windows. Both of which I have. The wiki also says that the convertible had leather seats and I have cloth.

    My dad says I have what's called a hardtop-convertible, where the chassis could have been a convertible but they put a hardtop on it at the factory, mostly because I have zero-post. I don't think someone attached a top to a convertible after the factory because i have dash controls for the "vanity lights" in the rear of the car.

    Since I'm new and have never actually seen another Electra in person I'm not really sure what I have, all the info I can find seems to contradict one another.
    ----------
    BCA# 46718
    Joseph
    Monroe NC
    1964 Electra 225 (work in progress)

  23. #23
    Ben Bruce BCA# 44599 First Born's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Joseph, in the early '50s, the 2 door version [no center post] was referred to as a" Hard top convertible". By '64 most of us referred to yours simply as 4 door hardtop, as opposed to a 4 door sedan. As to the fender skirt question, I can't say. But the "convertible came only with power windows" is probably correct. But
    not "only the convertible" came with power windows.

    You have another post asking about A/C. If you are not set on a correct as from the factory car, there are several aftermarket A/Cs available.

    Ben
    1995 Park Ave
    1950 Super Mod 52
    1950 Special Mod 41D Second owner

  24. #24

    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    Thanks for the info!

    Are the AC units your referring too the under the dash ones? Have you ever seen one of those or tried to install one? If it's a huge expensive and effort I'm not going to worry about it, I was just curious what was out there.
    ----------
    BCA# 46718
    Joseph
    Monroe NC
    1964 Electra 225 (work in progress)

  25. #25
    Proud BCA Member buick5563's Avatar
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    Re: My 1964 Electra Project

    I have installed several. The hardest part is the compressor bracket (on an earlier model), but the AC brackets are more readily available for the 401's. IF you plan on showing the car (BCA 400 point), I would go for the factory AC, which seems possible, but difficult. There are a lot of under hood pieces as well as the dash (which is different). My last under dash unit came from Old Air Products and cost under a grand if I recall. While I HAVE installed them before (so factor in my experience), it took me less than two full days including charging. I liked the look of the Old Air unit better, personally, but I have installed Classic Air, and the Vintage Air unit looks nice as well.
    Mike Middleton

    http://www.midtownrestorations.com
    Regional Co-Director South Central Region BCA
    Vice Director Alamo Chapter BCA
    Assistant Chairman BCA Driven Class

    1955 Special 2 dr. sedan (BCA Gold Senior Driver)
    1955 Century convertible (Updates at Me and My Buick http://forums.aaca.org/f163/55-centu...ct-272999.html)
    1955 Century Estate Wagon (Driven Hard and Fast)
    1948 Buick powered hot rod
    1931 Model A hot rod

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