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Everything posted by WhipperSnapper

  1. My rebuilt gauges arrived in the mail today!!! The work was done by Seattle Speedometer. I highly recommend contacting them if you're looking to have yours done.
  2. I'll continue to play around with them and see what can be done. I hate replacing parts that can be saved. In other news, I've sent the shocks off to be rebuilt and it isn't going to be cheap. I went with Kanter in NJ and am looking at ~$1,200! The Dynaflow is also being rebuilt as I type this - cheaper than the shocks. I drop the engine off at the machine shop Saturday to be rebuilt. I decided not to tackle it myself due to space and the difficulty of moving the dern thing around. I've placed an order with Wilwood for the front disc brake conversion kit and have everything else needed to complete the frame, suspension, brakes, and fuel system. I'm just waiting on the shocks to come back before putting it all together. After the frame is back together, the engine and transmission will be painted and mounted to the frame. I'll start on the cab (which is currently sitting outside) after the drivetrain is complete.
  3. Here's what I did: 1. Use garden hose and compressed air to ensure lines clear. 2. Use funnel and heavy rubber gloves. Pour sulfuric acid through the lines. Let sit 20 min. 3. Flush lines with hose, dry with compressed air. 4. Use brake parts cleaner to free stuck screw ends. 5. Use vice to hold lines. Clean with grinder wire wheel. Be sure to wear a leather apron and use eye protection! 6. Use black marker to mark problem areas (excessive pitting, holes, etc.) For later review / repair. Use the nastiest drain cleaner you can find. Sulfuric acid will be a prime ingredient. Harbor Freight is the place to buy your grinder, apron, gloves, and wire wheels. Cheap, cheap!
  4. A few photos of the work in progress:
  5. I've been thinking of different methods but all have their downsides. I'm leaning towards pumping a rust converter / inhibitor through the lines. Corroseal is what I used on the frame and it's thin enough to work. My feeling though is that it's really not necessary. The fuel lines are pretty thick and there is very little pitting. I don't think that the rust ran deep - just surface. The fuel system is not high pressure, and with a fuel filter before the carb, I don't see much of a problem. The brake lines are a different story...
  6. I've been working on my fuel lines for the last four hours and I'm pleased with the results. There is still some surface rust on the insides, but nothing that should prevent the lines from functioning as intended. I ran sulfuric acid through them, let sit, and then flushed with water until clear. They all hold pressure and have unimpeded flow when water is run through. I've got more work to do, but don't see any reason to scrap them. An inline fuel filter will still be required, but I was going to use one anyway. The back two brake lines are completely stopped up. I'll need to work out a solution or find replacements. More on that later.
  7. They have rust everywhere! I'm going to use sulfuric acid on the insides and then pressure test them. Let's see how clean they come.
  8. So, no luck restoring the original lines?
  9. My stainless steel fuel and brake lines have seen better days, but I think that they're worth restoring. I've been playing around with different methods and think that I've settled on a strategy. I'll start on them tomorrow and we'll see how they turn out. Here's what they look like now. Have any of you attempted this before?
  10. Finished painting the parts from yesterday's cleaning. They turned out nice.
  11. Today was another exciting day of cleaning Buick parts. Have I mentioned yet how much I hate sandblasting? For those of you who haven't tried it, it's the worst. The wheels are finished but everything else needs one more coat of primer. That'll happen in the morning, followed by a pretty coat of black paint!
  12. I should also add: The problem with these older Buicks (even the rare ones) is that the cost to restore often eclipses the value of the car, unless you're willing and able to do most of the work yourself. If you farm out the body work, paint, engine rebuild, transmission work, interior, etc. you can easily spend six figures on a ~$40,000 car. A donor would certainly help, if you could find one cheap enough. I'll definitely have more in mine than it's worth at the end of the day. Sometimes it's just about saving a car that most folks would otherwise scrap. I know that feeling well.
  13. You've got quite the project there Jared, but it's definitely possible. I bought my 51' when I was 28, so I know what you mean about the age thing. A lot of the technology (if that's even the right word for it) on my car was completely foreign to me when I began. Up to that point, I had only played around on modern cars - nothing much older than the early 1990's. I remember reading the manual for my Buick and thinking "what is a torque tube!?" I had a terrible time figuring out how to open the hood when she arrived on the flat bed and it took me a good 25 minutes to figure out how to start the thing! I'm not sure about yours, but you have to press the gas pedal to start mine - after the key is turned. Push the gas pedal to start??? No 90's kid would ever think to try that, left to his own devices. I had to phone a much older friend for help. Don't hesitate to ask questions, even if they sound stupid. I felt pretty dump asking "how do you start this thing?" but as it turns out, it wasn't a stupid question. Best of luck to you with your restoration! Hopefully your wife is as patient as mine. That certainly helps!
  14. So, I decided to tackle the rear differential this weekend. It's not quite finished yet because of the rain, but the primer is on and it's good enough to share! I had considered painting the housing brick red (as discussed above) but decided on matte black to keep things simple. I also cleaned and painted the rear springs. The rear end should be completed and bolted back to the frame by Wednesday if the weather cooperates.
  15. Thanks Pilgrim! They'll be more to come very soon.
  16. The frame is cleaned and painted! I should have it rebuilt and rolling by the end of the month, if all goes as planned. Does anyone happen to know about rebuilding the shocks / dampeners? I'd really prefer to do it myself vs. sending them off, but I can't find any information on how to go about it.
  17. Thanks to you both for the rear axle info! I've heard several differing opinions on the topic... One of my buddies said that it depended greatly on which factory produced the car as to what colors were used. He said that they'd paint them whatever generic color they had (blue, red, black, etc.) available due to cost cutting and post war financial difficulties. I'm not sure how accurate this is, but it would explain the variation I've seen in color. Sorry for the delayed response gents. I used to receive a handy email every time someone replied to this thread, but no more. I must have messed up a setting somewhere.
  18. Anyone able to comment on the rear differential housing color for a 51'? If not, I guess black she goes.
  19. "I accidentally was hooked into buying another Buick" I love this. Congratulations on your find!!!
  20. This appears to be a good candidate for restoration or at the very least, a refresh. If you browse this forum you will find cars in far worse condition that have been brought back into the light, albeit at great expense to their owners. Regardless of what we think, the decision ultimately depends on what you will need to restore (what I assume is) your true love here - the convertible. So, what do you need from this car? I would make a detailed list and then try to find those same parts on the web, taking into account that most of the parts coming off the sedan will need to be restored in some way before going on to the convertible. Does the cost of those parts outweigh the value of the sedan? And when I say "value" here I mean "value to you." This whole "the sedan isn't worth restoring because the value is lower" logic only applies to those people who look at restoring cars in terms of dollars and cents. Restoring a Buick sedan is kind of like installing an in-ground swimming pool - you do it 'cause you want to. If it's worth restoring / saving to you, then the original condition doesn't matter.
  21. Try Dallas Chrome in Dallas, GA. I received several references prior to contacting them. You can also try Custom Plating in Snellville, GA. Both shops came highly recommended.
  22. I'm hoping that someone can shed some light on the original color of rear differential housings. Most of the original restorations that I've seen show them painted black but mine appears to have been red at some point.
  23. I was hoping that someone could tell me the trick to removing the pistons from the block. They don't seem to clear and the shop manual is not helpful.
  24. Hello fellow Buick enthusiasts! Ready for a long-overdue update!? So, the frame is completely stripped now and ready to be sand blasted! There is some damage from a past fender bender that will need to be addressed but, aside from that, she is in great shape. Sand blasting has been put on hold until my F-250 is back from the shop. Things were moving slowly there for a bit, so I decided to go ahead and send the radio off to be restored. The work was done by Bob's Radio & TV in Oceano, CA and they did a fabulous job! FM and AUX was added but you'd never know by the look of it. Before (coke can for scale): After: AUX Input: Bob's sends back the bad parts for your review. There were so many! No wonder the radio didn't work. I've also been working on the body and have made some interesting discoveries in the process. One of the previous owners refreshed the interior and in the process, apparently found some pesky rust. Rather than properly repair the floor pans, he cut up old street signs and riveted them down! I spent several hours pulling them up and scraping off the duct tape (YES! DUCT TAPE!) that he used to cover the edges. I was shocked to find such a mess hiding under that beautiful interior. The rust goes deep. All four floor pans will need to be replaced. I have also spent a lot of time cleaning, tagging, and bagging hardware. While it's not the most exciting part of a restoration, it's very gratifying to see the shiny old parts ready for another 64+ years of service! More to come soon!
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