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Bob Beck's (bhigdog) 55 Century project


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Bob...all I can say is ...WOW!!! Great thread and wonderful step by step approach as to the way to do it right..I know that this is a shot from the 5000 ft. level. There are a lot of details that I know you did that were buried in the making of this wonder. Congratulations and I hope to get a chance to meet you someday. Outstanding!!

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Bob...all I can say is ...WOW!!! Great thread and wonderful step by step approach as to the way to do it right..I know that this is a shot from the 5000 ft. level. There are a lot of details that I know you did that were buried in the making of this wonder. Congratulations and I hope to get a chance to meet you someday. Outstanding!!

Very true, Jim. Actually the gazzilion little details and repairs were what ate up most of the time. I have no idea how a for profit restoration shop could possibly make money unless they cut corners or the customer was absolutely made of money.................Bob

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Bob,

Having gotten such enjoyment from seeing the pictures of the final product, I wonder if you would share some shots of your other restorations?

Actually it would be pretty much more of the same, John. One of the editors at Hemmings suggested that but we both decided it wasn't a good idea. I'll take a look through some of my pix. Maybe I'll just do a quickie in one or two installment posts...............Bob

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It was my good fortune and distinct pleasure to be parked next to Bob at the Buick Centenial (pictures #14 and #15 of the 55 Buick group MORE PICTURES .

55buick4%20(2).jpg

55buick4%20(3).jpg

It was all knees and elbows trying to get a look at the restoration pictures.

Bob, at what point did the wire wheels get installed? Do you have any finished product pictures of the car with wheel covers?

Willie

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I do very much remember being next to you, Willie. But that was pre forum and I had no idea. I restored the 55's wheels with the full intention of putting hub caps on it. When I started taking the dings out of my caps I realized they were chromium plated. It was getting near Hershey and I would not have been able to get caps stripped, fixed, and replated in time so I just bought the wheels. I've never seen the car with caps.

I'm still kicking myself for not buying a full set of NOS caps for $200 when I had a chance a year or so later................Bob

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Bob,

I've been visiting this Buick forum for several months now watching all the work being put into a lot of really nice cars but this thread reviewing the build of your 55 really does stand out and the photos of the car just look amazing. What a great amount of work and a heck of a job pulling this project together. Great color choices too, it really shows just how much of a true looker it would have been back in its day. Nice job. Scott...

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I apologize for the hijack Bob, but ... Wow! Thanks for those pics Willie. I remember looking at both of your cars. And I even found a pic that shows my 56 made it out there. I'm parked right next to Buicknutty ( Keith) ...

post-31834-143141776804_thumb.jpg

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Bob,

I've been visiting this Buick forum for several months now watching all the work being put into a lot of really nice cars but this thread reviewing the build of your 55 really does stand out and the photos of the car just look amazing. What a great amount of work and a heck of a job pulling this project together. Great color choices too, it really shows just how much of a true looker it would have been back in its day. Nice job. Scott...

Thank you.............Bob

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To put it in perspective:

[ATTACH=CONFIG]181778[/ATTACH]

[ATTACH=CONFIG]181779[/ATTACH]

Without a doubt, one of the most beautiful Buicks I have seen. Just a thing of beauty.

I dunno, I kind of liked the original colour scheme. But then, I have been looking at it for more than 40 years.

post-59990-14314178841_thumb.jpg

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It was my good fortune and distinct pleasure to be parked next to Bob at the Buick Centenial (pictures #14 and #15 of the 55 Buick group MORE PICTURES .

55buick4%20(2).jpg

55buick4%20(3).jpg

It was all knees and elbows trying to get a look at the restoration pictures.

Bob, at what point did the wire wheels get installed? Do you have any finished product pictures of the car with wheel covers?

Willie

Willie your car is no slouch either. Very very nice.

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Bob - thank you so much for taking the time to write and post your story. There is a wealth of knowledge here in 1 spot, and your ingenuity and tenacity in this endeavor is downright impressive and inspirational. Thanks again!

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I think Rob is referring to the white over blue scheme your car was sporting before it was resurrected.

Yes.......... My "Eh" post was a lame attempt at satire by referring to some Canadian's tendency to add "eh" to the end of a statement..... Eh?................Bob

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BOB, even I missed that one. Adding the eh is really a rural southern Ontario idiom. It's used in a socially engaging way, like upspeak, to confirm that the listener is still paying attention. Canadians are almost as mobile as Americans, so you're likely to meet someone from near Windsor or St. Catharines just about anywhere in Canada, which makes this regional speech pattern seem universal. We could talk aboot it more, next time we meet at Tims.

post-59990-14314179469_thumb.jpg

Edited by Rob McDonald (see edit history)
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BOB, even I missed that one. Adding the eh is really a rural southern Ontario idiom. It's used in a socially engaging way, like upspeak, to confirm that the listener is still paying attention. Canadians are almost as mobile as Americans, so you're likely to meet someone from near Windsor or St. Catharines just about anywhere in Canada, which makes this regional speech pattern seem universal. We could talk aboot it more, next time we meet at Tims.

Like I said it was a lame attempt. There is a very local version of "eh" used here in Eastern PA. Instead of "eh" the word is "say", added to the end of a statement as a question. Something like "That's a nice looking car..........Say?"

I've had more than one cuppa and a sinker at Tim's...................Bob

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  • 6 months later...

I really think this thread deserves to be brought back to the front page.............for those that may not have read it, I suggest you do.

A fantastic record of a superb restoration...........lots of info, tips and photos................enjoy!!

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  • 6 months later...

Hey Bob,

I continue to be overwhelmed with amazement and delight as I read through this epic tale. Finding out about your flying experience and profession as well as your appreciation for classical music, I was reminded of a wonderful album you need to check out if you haven't heard it yet. As a pilot, you may have heard of the expression a "goat rodeo". I understand that it is a term used by pilots to describe a situation where hundreds of decisions, processes, calculations have to go 100% right in order to walk away from a very bad situation. I imagine like Apollo 13. The music is performed by Bella Flec, YoYo Ma, and Edgar Myer. I couldn't help but muse about the similarity between this project and the notion of a "goat rodeo" and hearing the awesome music and seeing the success of your efforts. Check it out if you haven't heard it ; you will find excerpts on Youtube. Cheers, Bob

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  • 1 year later...
  • 3 months later...

How are you doing Mr. Bob?  I really enjoyed reading through your thread and seeing the steps of your process.  This thread will be used as a major reference for my restoration.  I am only in the infancy of mine right now.  Already taken most of the exterior chrome off and stored away.  Right now,  I am removing interior items and also storing.  I am nervous about the overall project.  I am probably younger than most on this forum and limited on knowledge and experience.  I suppose I somewhat make up for that with how anal and meticulous I am.  I think other than the engine overhaul, fixing my flooring will be the most difficult.  While I know I am going to have to replace some sections of my floor, the severity is nothing compared to the condition yours was in.  That gives me hope and I appreciate you taking the time to share your experience.  Your car is gorgeous.  Take care.

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  • 3 years later...
On 2/20/2013 at 8:35 PM, stealthbob said:

I don't think any of us can comprehend what a thread like this will mean to so many over so many years. I can go back to some forums that I posted on 15 years ago, I can only wonder how long your words and images will help throughout the ages.

 I was looking for a reference and re-read this entire thread. I found what I was looking for and decided to bring it back to the top as required reading. Thanks again, Bob.

 

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  • 7 months later...

Wow, this work is amazing.  I feel so fortunate that I don't have anywhere near that level of corrosion damage to contend with on my 55 Special.. I assume that is the hazard of a convertible that has been open to the weather for many years.

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