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Lebowski

1949 Buick Special - VERY ORIGINAL - Only 47,500 Miles - $7900 - Drive It Home!

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This car is extremely original and runs great. It has 47,500 original miles on it and still has the original paint, interior, straight 8 engine, 3 speed manual transmission, and US Royal spare tire. I also have the original purchase order showing that it was purchased from E. M. Christensen Chevrolet-Buick in Harlan, Iowa on December 16, 1948 by two sisters named Lelia and Pearl Buss. I also have some other original paperwork as well as a binder full of other interesting items. It was featured on the cover of the August 2010 "Buick Bugle" magazine which is the monthly publication of the Buick Club of America. There is also a 4 page article on it in that issue. I drive the car almost every day when the weather is nice. It always draws a crowd at car shows as well as gas stations, store parking lots, etc. The car was a "barn find" in 2005. I even have a picture of the barn in Iowa where it sat since 1975. Last December I emailed some pictures of it along with some info about it to the local newspaper in Harlan, Iowa and they ran a story on it. They included my email address in the article and I heard from at least a dozen people from the Harlan area who were familiar with the Buss sisters, the dealer where it was sold, or the local Mobil station in Harlan that worked on it over the years. (There was a keychain that came with the car with the names of the two brothers who ran the station. I heard from a son of each of them plus some others who worked there back in the 50s and 60s.) I have a 3 ring binder full of emails and pictures that people in the Harlan, Iowa area sent me which will be included with the car. Anyway, the car has a set of original plaid seat covers on it from the 60s which I just installed a couple of months ago. Most everything on the car works-lights, horn, wipers, speedometer & odometer and turn signals (the lever is on the RIGHT side of the steering column). To start it you press down on the gas pedal and there's a button under it which starts it. All the glass is good with no cracks or chips. The gas tank has been removed and cleaned. It's a lot of fun to drive and it attracts a lot of attention. It was appraised last year at $14,000 but I'd like to sell it quickly if possible so I have it priced at $7900 so if you want to check it out call Dave at 502-767-7773 before 9 PM. Feel free to email me at dave314 at bellsouth.net for more pictures and info.

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I think I see "41" on the invoice but the date is Dec,48 so the sisters must have bought it used. It has a 49 grille and hood but the front fenders also look like 41 without the ventiports.I see it was in the Buick Bugle,am I that wrong?

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Mellor-Do a little research. It's a Model 41. You need to read Pete Phillips' article on this car in the August 2010 "Buick Bugle." Do you really think I'm that stupid that I don't know what year my own car is? I hope not....

Edited by Lebowski (see edit history)

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Mr Lebowski, what a great looking car! I wish I had the funds. Great presentation, as George already stated. I wish all listings were this good and thorough.

Edited by bofusmosby (see edit history)

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Mellor-Do a little research. It's a Model 41. You need to read Pete Phillips' article on this car in the August 2010 "Buick Bugle." Do you really think I'm that stupid that I don't know what year my own car is? I hope not....

Mr Lebowski. I don't think you're stupid just misinformed,maybe Mr Phillips is,too.I thought I might get some help from an unbiased Buick expert. Those additional pics you posted just confirm to me that your car is a 41 with a 46-47 front end.compare them to the pics of the 49s that I previously posted. compare the dash with the radio controls on the bottom and the flush gauges to this one. I will post a 49 dash to see the difference

41buk02.jpg

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This is a 49 dash . Note the radio controls on the top and the complete difference in the gauges,the speedoneter being set in a raised panel above the steering wheel,no clock in the glovebox door. the easiest way to tell a 49 is by the ventiports(portholes) in the fenders. 49 was the first year. There are many sites showing all years of Buick like carpicsindex.com that's where thes pics came from.

49buk4.jpg

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If this is a 1941, would that make it even more desirable, and possibly even more valuable since this would be a pre-war car? Of course it having a mis-matched front end would be another story.

Edited by bofusmosby (see edit history)

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If Mellor had read the article in the Bugle he would know that he has absolutely no idea what he's talking about. For 1949 Buick redesigned the Roadmaster and Super but not the Special. He's looking at pics of the Roadmaster and Super and comparing them to the Special. That's why it says "RARE unrestored '49 Special" on the cover of the August 2010 Bugle. The author of the article, Pete Phillips, is not only the editor of the Buick Bugle but also the head judge at the annual BCA (Buick Club of America) conventions so he obviously knows a lot about Buicks. Mellor admits that he's "no Buick expert" but he continues to disagree because he's not mature enough to admit that he's made a mistake. Grow up....

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In 1949 the Specials were a carryover of prior years styling. Mr Lebowski and Mr Phillips are correct.

I don't claim any expertise in 49 Buicks, but looking thru an early Buick parts book it is obvious the 49 Special was a carryover design. It did not get the same instrument panel as the upper series, nor did it get the same taillights.

John

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Guest BJM

Dave

This is a 1949 Buick Special model 41. Here is what happened. Buick like most car companies, used carryover styling after WW 2. The resdesigns which affected Buick and Cadillac primarily, were only applied to Buicks large bodied offerings, the Super and Roadmaster.

The Special used carryover styling pretty much unchanged from pre war times except for the grille which was freshened in 1946-then again in 1947.

The Special shared bodies with Pontiac and Chevrolet.

There was never a 1949 Special with the Super/Roadmaster grille or other details.

The next Special redesign occurred with the 1950 model, the one with the grille over-riders which go over the bumper which some find unattractive.

The Cadillac Series 75 Limousine line also used 1946-47 styling in 1948 and 1949, years where the Cadillac was restyled with eggcrate grilles and tailfins.

The old styling actually makes the 49 Special an interesting sight to see. You are correct that body styling was unchanged from 1941.

For one last example, Chrysler Corporation had 2 1949's, a "1st" series which used carryover styling same as 46-48 and the new 49 styling, which was the new postwar resdesign.

Edited by BJM (see edit history)

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Very interesting thread. I thought I knew a lot about 40's cars, but never realized Buick made a carryover model in 1949 (or Chrysler for that matter -- see related thread). Topics such as this keep me coming back to this forum ... and back, and back.

Don

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Thanks to those who corroborated what I said about the year of the car.

I have two user names because I didn't think "49_Special" was appropriate for someone with a '61 Mercury so I'm phasing the first one out.

Also, for those of you who don't watch too many movies, I took "Lebowski" from the 1998 Coen Brothers classic "The Big Lebowski" starring Jeff Bridges as Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski and John Goodman as his buddy Walter.

If anyone wants to read the Bugle article on this Buick you can email me at 61rambler@bellsouth.net and I'll send you the file which includes the entire issue. The article starts on page 24....

Edited by Lebowski (see edit history)

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Dave, for what it's worth, IMHO this ad is incredibly well presented, the car is clearly well documented, and very fairly priced. Honestly I think your tone is well...restrained after the 7th time the year of this car is questioned. I know how I would have responded. Do you guys really have an issue with this ad or Dave's choice of "handles" on this forum??

If I were you I would ask moderators to delete the noise here, drawing attention away from the actual description of a really nice car. That is what the general discussion section is for.

Anyway, Good luck with it.

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For you guys who like old oil change stickers check these out. I also included a pic of the data plate.... :)

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Mr. Mellor has amply demonstrated his knowledge of 1949 Buicks to everyone. And yes, I own two 1949 (which look like the ones he pictured) and have worked on this unrestored 1949 Special, which is a very well preserved car, but I will try to remember to consult Mr. Mellor before I make any future statements about 1949 Buick Specials. Thank you, Mr. Lebowski, for attempting to straighten him out.

Pete Phillips, BCA #7338

Editor, The Buick Bugle

Head Judge, 2011 BCA National Meet

Head Judge, 2010 BCA National Meet

Head Judge, 1998 BCA National Meet

Chair of BCA Judges' Training, 2005-2011

1949 Buick model 56-S

1949 Buick model 59

1959 Buick model 76-R

1954 Buick model 48-D

1959 Buick Electra 2-dr. ht.

1962 Buick Electra 225 4-dr ht.

1963 Buick Wildcat conv. 4-spd.

Edited by Pete Phillips (see edit history)

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Thanks to all the more knowledgeable people who have set me straight on this. I'm sorry if my ignorance of the Buicks caused hard feelings. You must get a lot of that from us common folk.

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Thanks to you Dave...your questioning of the inconsistencies of what you believed to be correct, generated some very good info and discussion.

I learned many things but not all car related....

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Here's a few more interesting pictures. I tracked down the elderly gentleman who bought the Buick from the Buss sisters in 1975 through an old Iowa vehicle registration. He sent me a photo from Christmas Day 1948 showing his fiancee and himself at age 19 standing in front of the Buick. (They are in their 80s now and still married.) The Buss sisters had purchased the car nine days earlier. I also have a picture of one of the Buss sisters which was taken at a wedding in 1966. Pearl is in the blue dress on the right. The man on the left with the crutches is their brother Elmer, who had polio. The last picture is of E. M. Christensen Chevrolet-Buick in Harlan, Iowa (where the car was sold new on 12-16-48) which was taken in the early '60s because you can see a '62 Chevy parked in front. There's a lot more original pics and info that come with the car....

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Edited by Lebowski (see edit history)

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