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Jetneo

Don't hate me, but "Fred" the car saw daylight today for the first time in 14 years!

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In 1978, I found myself in Arizona at a drag race working for Wide World of Sports, and I saw an ad in the paper that said "54 Buick Special Convertible. Driver. Runs Good." So I stole the company rental and drove 75 miles to see it. Love at first sight. I gave the guy $50, not to sell it to anyone else, got back to Los Angeles, sent him ALL the money ($1800), and instead of getting ripped off, he drove it to California to me!

It was my only car for 10 years. White with red interior. I had to hang my head out the window to drive in the rain when the wipers would lock in the open position, and I breathed the fumes in the hot summer stop-and-go traffic. But I loved that car, and swore I would never become one of the many people who would stop me, go all misty, and say "I used to have a car just like that". I swore I'd never sell it unless it meant losing my house. But time marched on. I wanted air conditioning. And seat belts. I became gun shy of the frontal lobotomy dashboard, and the cardiac bypass steering column, and weary of the people flagging me down at 70 mph on the freeway to ask "What year is it?"

I bought a Honda. And Fred started an oft repeated cycle of sitting, getting a new 3E battery, getting rolling again. And then sitting. Until 1999. Am I ashamed to say I stopped starting him up? Taking him out? Buying him a new battery? Yes. I'm very ashamed.

Now I've retired. Today I called AAA and with the help of a flatbed. AND a second tow truck, I got him towed to a mechanic who SAYS he's great with 50's cars. We'll see. I know Fred'll never be a show car. I don't care. I love that car and I want to do right by him.

If you have any suggestions, or referrals for Buick loving mechanics in Los Angeles or Glendale or thereabouts, please let me know. I'm waiting to hear the diagnosis. What will it take to get him up and around? I'll keep you posted. Wish us both luck. And please, don't hate me!

Joyce

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Benefits of AACA Membership.

Joyce,

I'm not sure of the Glendale or Los Angeles area, but you really should get in touch with MrEarl and Stealth Bob on the forum. They are fantastic guys for getting information on 1954 Buicks. They may know of some people that can help you! It is great that you have finally realized that Fred needed some TLC! It is also great that you kept Fred all these years, not getting rid of the poor guy. It is a great car and you will find a lot of guys here on the forum to give you assistance.

You should also join the BCA (Buick Club of America). Great people, great times, and really good information monthly delivered to your door. Go to www.buickclub.org and you can join online. Congrats on a great vehicle, and when you get some time, post some pictures of Fred on here. Pictures are always welcome! Good Luck with Fred!

PS...Like the fact that your 54 has a name..makes the car part of the family, you know :)

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Try Karol's General Garage at 1621 S Central Ave, Glendale (818) 246-5696 The shop has been open since the early 70's. I'm sure they could get Fred running good again. I worked there in the early 80's for Karol, the owner himself. We worked on anything with wheels and it didn't matter how old it was or where it came from. His son, John, has been running the shop since the late 90's. They do good honest work there.

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Thanks so much for the tip. I'll absolutely check them out. They'll be plenty of work to go around! And thanks for your kind words. Much appreciated.

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Joined today, and found my local chapter, too. I'll be at the April meeting for sure. I'll post pix as soon as I figure out your system, it looked a bit intimidating! As for MrEarl and Stealth Bob....I just put them on my short list! Thanks very much for the support and the info.

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JOYCE, it was thrilling to get to the end of your initial post and discover that you are a woman! You've got a great story and a fine old car. Please make sure that you're in one or two of the photos that your new friends will be begging you to put up here. We promise not to laugh (too loudly) at your hairstyle, if you manage to find images of you and Fred during your first years together.

This stock photo will tide us over until you can show us the real thing

post-59990-143141800858_thumb.jpg

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How can we hate you, Joyce? You're one of us! Welcome and have fun :)

I hate her...... how did she sneak one by me.on_the_quiet.gifbiggrin.gif

Just kiddin Joyce....actually, are you married? biggrin.gif I just retired too, maybe we could move to Utah and become Mormans, I'll talk to my wife about it.

What a sweet ride. Pulled this picture off the '54 Buick Highway, hope you don't mind. Fill us in on the "Start me up". Please inform your mechanic that the valves in these lil 264's. being so small that they just love to stick if gummed up after sittin awhile. Even after the initial crank up they can stick after a week or so.

Look forward to hearing and seeing more about Fred and Joyce.

Let's see....Salt Lake City News....classifieds......retirement communities...... oh hey Rita... 911

attachment.php?attachmentid=8271&d=1363221680

Rob, you're good. You may have found her car.

post-31987-143141806309_thumb.jpg

Edited by MrEarl (see edit history)

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You're one of us!

Figuratively speaking. Generally we smell and come with bad habits.

Mr. Earl:

move to Utah and become Mormans, I'll talk to my wife about it.

Worlds shortest conversation.

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Thanks everyone, you're a sassy bunch! That dent on his hood happened during the tow trip to the mechanic! 59 years old without nose damage and it had to happen then! I didn't even bust their chops about it, I was so grateful they (AAA) were willing to call a second truck to get him out of the garage and onto the flatbed. They were great guys. Fred wasn't your average haul! He was stuck in the garage, and for a while I thought I'd have to sell him with the house!

So far the mechanic is working on replacing the ignition system. I'm going to try to have a discussion about getting some Marvel Mystery Oil flowing before even hand cranking is attempted, but I don't want to insult him, it's obvious I'm no mechanic! My husband, of 5 years, is cautiously optimistic about my car, but he refuses to ride in him until I have seat belts installed! I get it, but honestly, people stay far away from me, they know they'll lose pound for pound!

A friend of mine said today:

"The way to make a small fortune in classic cars is to start with a large fortune!"

Joyce

new BCA member

1954 Buick Special Convertible

Los Angeles

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What a shame about the dent. If the dent was their fault, AAA has insurance that covers such things. It looks like it might could be handled with a no paint dent removal tool. Unless you're planning on a complete repaint, I'd certainly ask them to either handle making the repair or compensate you for it.

Unless your mechanic is familiar with the old small nailheads, don't hesitate to just mention the fact about valve sticking issues, better safe than sorry...

A friend of mine said today:

"The way to make a small fortune in classic cars is to start with a large fortune!"

You have a very wise friend.

Thanks for the update, keep us posted.

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Granted, my eyesight and hearing aren't what they used to be, although despite what Mr. Earl says, my smell is better than ever, imo. But how come I'm not seeing the pictures that you guys are referring to? What dent? Surely that lithesome brunette leaning on Joyce's car in the beach photo couldn't have damaged the hood.

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Granted, my eyesight and hearing aren't what they used to be, although despite what Mr. Earl says, my smell is better than ever, imo. But how come I'm not seeing the pictures that you guys are referring to? What dent? Surely that lithesome brunette leaning on Joyce's car in the beach photo couldn't have damaged the hood.

are you not seeing this picture here

attachment.php?attachmentid=8271&d=1363221680

in my post# 8 above?

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No, there's just a little square with a blue stripe and an turned-over page corner. Looks like a placeholder for a photo that can't be referenced, like the blue question mark that sometimes appears in old Forum threads.

Is anyone else getting this symbol or am I the only one who can't see Fred?

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I am with Rob! If I right click and save and open, it takes me to the '54 Buick highway. I am using Google Chrome as a browser. I will sign in on another browser and try.

Ben

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Okay. I've installed some software updates and now I get the familiar blue question mark, instead of the new symbol that I didn't recognize. Still doesn't look much like a Buick convertible, though.

BEN, I tried a right click, too, and was also transported to the '54 Buick Highway. Lovely and smooth, with wonderfully nostalgic scenery, except that I'd have to log in first. Not a bad thing, I'm sure, but could someone just copy Fred's photo to their own desktop and then insert it here?

post-59990-143141815738_thumb.jpg

Edited by Rob McDonald
technological gymnastics (see edit history)

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Same here. The only picture I see is the photo of the lady standing next to the convertible. It's a vintage black and white photo from the GM Photo Store, not a picture of an unrestored car. We are talking about a picture of Joyce's actual car right? I don't even see any question marks or other icons.:confused:

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OH OH then, Houston we have a problem. I too have been seeing some posts with that blue square with a white stripe. is late will look into it tomorrow.

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