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1936 Gear Shift Knob


packick
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I have owned my 1936 Buick Series 40 Business Coupe for over 40 years now. In the latest issue of the Bugle, they have an article on a '36 Buick Special that is all original. I noticed in this article the car has an "ivory" gear shift knob. I always thought the ivory knobs were standard on the big series Buicks of that year (Limited and Roadmaster). What was the standard gear shift knob on the Specials? Was an ivory knob an dealer option?

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Packick-- In my 1936 dealers order book it shows that all shift knobs are the same for all models. That said, it also lists as an option when you order the Banjo spoked steering wheel you also receive a shift knob different from the normal or standard issue. I have not been able to verify what this knob looks like. I have from ownership of several '36's a knob that has a "ivory sunburst" in the center. This came from a local all original 81 series car that I owned and it had the banjo wheel option. However 3 weeks ago I looked at an all original 81 series(without sidemounts) that had a banjo wheel but had a black rubber shift knob. I brought this "shifting knob question" to the forum several months ago, but got no response. So it's still left to ponder! --Bob

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Bob and Marty:

Your analysis is exactly the same as mine . . . there was only one standard knob for all models (mine is black). When I look in the Buick 1928-1942 Master Parts List, section 4.009, there is only one part number listed for a gear shift knob (1304496). If fact, this same knob is listed for years 1930 to 1938 inclusive.

So is it possible that the 1936 ivory knob (maybe the one that Bob thinks was included with a banjo steering wheel) was a non-GM accessory? Otherwise, wouldn't that knob be listed in the parts manual too? Unfortunately I don't have access to a 1936 Buick Accessories catalog.

Puzzling!

Joe

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Joel:

That was my first thought when I saw the ivory knob. I assume it is made of plastic, and I believe the 1937 and 1938 models is when Buick started using a lot of plastic on the dash and various knobs on the dash. So it would make sense to me that the gear shift knob would be made of plastic. And ivory might have been the color of choice.

But I still go back to the parts manual where it lists only one for 1930-38. The mystery continues.

Joe

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