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ME & MY === 1958 Buick, 1958 Buick, 1958 Buick and……..


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Back to the Special:

Saturday actually was an early Xmas for me! There were some great deals in the flyers Friday and I casually mentioned to my wife that I could use a good floor jack. It was suggested that if I really wanted it she would get it for me for Xmas but I'd better hurry. Don't have to tell me twice! Then.......

In another flyer are jack stands that are much heavier than the ones I have now and with contemplating doing the trany seal thought.... hmmmm.... so.....

Merry Xmas to me! :D

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Merry Christmas and Happy Boxing Day Doug, to you family and you!

BTW, the jackstands lifted my Bessie about 20" off the ground when I had her up on them to do the underside. Was very solid support on 4 corners of the frame. Looks like you got a nice 4 pack and a jack from santa this year! They will come in real handy!

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Thanks Jim and likewise!

BTW, the jackstands lifted my Bessie about 20" off the ground when I had her up on them to do the underside. Was very solid support on 4 corners of the frame. Looks like you got a nice 4 pack and a jack from santa this year! They will come in real handy!

Thanks for the info on the height. I'm sure my jack stands will be able to get her up that high and more.

Planning on putting them under her in the next few days and right now not thinking I will take the rear end out totally but pull it back enough to get at that seal. Any suggestions on the seal R&R process? My chassis manual doesn't seem to cover it in much detail and wonder what you experienced. Your pictures help with the visual aspect for me but are there any hints what to do regarding the replacement / realignment? If I recall, the drive shaft had to go back in just so otherwise it seemed to hang up or something like that? (that was a few years ago :eek:)

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I want to fix that leak first, replace all that lost fluid, check the fuel line while under there and try to fire her up. I can turn the motor over by putting a little pressure on the belt while turning the fan so I'm good with things there. Once sure of no leaks will go after the rest of the list.....

Now, waiting to hear from a plumber about ruffing in a basement bathroom (much needed) so.... have another project that will have to possibly take priority to keep my wife happy. (Guess there was motive for getting me that floor jack!) :rolleyes:

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Well... It helps if one reads the manual thoroughly!

Found two sections pertaining to the trany seal and rear end R&R which answered my own question about the alignment issue.

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I would still appreciate hearing someone's experiences and help with what to look for since I've decided to attempt this myself sometime this spring.

I also came across this original Accessories Booklet which was printed for the Canadian market. It appears to have been from a Dealership in Quebec.

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Doug,

Make sure that you cut / make some alignment pins from bolts to put in the end of the transmission to align the torque tube as well. I learned that fact from Willie and Mike, and it is a critical item in the re-installation of the torque tube to the transmission. The need to have the heads cut off, and slots cut in them for a screw driver to remove them.

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Thanks Jim,

Might pull one of the bolts out to get the size to pick up the long ones after I put the car up on my new stands Friday. Been busy with family and friends over the Holidays.

Too bad the thermometer has hit bottom again! :P

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Multitasking between Holiday festivities, new computer (adjusting from Vista...), rental property hot water tank failure, the Whippet, re-tarping the wife's parking hut (due to excessive winds), starting year end business paperwork.....

I managed to put the Buick up on the new stands.

Think I feel confident about yanking on the rear end now?

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Knowing how cold it was outside yesterday (10F) thought I'd give a shot and try to get one of the bolts out of the torque tube and go to the hardware store get some bolts to make up a set of guide pins as Jim suggested.

Well..... after an hour on high the propane heater wasn't up to the task! :eek:

Will try again on a little bit warmer day.

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Doug,

I hope you got out into the garage yesterday, was great! My little propane heater worked very well. Got about 2 hours of sandblasting of parts done for the wagon in my toasty garage. Dusty, but fun to do! Hopefully you did a bit yesterday as well. Keep us posted!!

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Doug,

I hope you got out into the garage yesterday, was great! My little propane heater worked very well. Got about 2 hours of sandblasting of parts done for the wagon in my toasty garage. Dusty, but fun to do! Hopefully you did a bit yesterday as well. Keep us posted!!

Sadly no, I did not get a chance to be in there! :(

Multi-tasking some and had to spend time on the desk for my business. (think government)

I have been to your place once and imagine that the garage is insulated plus being attached to the house you can manage the heat just fine.

My garage is 22x48 with no insulation and with open rafters to the two small roof vents it takes a bit to retain some heat. I have not used it to work in through the winter before (my bad) but have bought some plastic to staple up on the ceiling in hopes of trapping a bit of heat to try and not lose my momentum. Mind you, you and a few others are helping keep me driven now more than ever with your projects and progress. :)

It's hard to see but I can park my Limited behind the Special plus the Roadmaster beside her if I had too (the Overland is there now) plus the Ford truck so with room for four big cars plus room to move around them.... quite a big area to get some heat up in order to work when the bottom drops out of the thermometer.

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Just going to keep plugging away!

p.s. I have designated an old pair of insulated coveralls to this garage. :D (not giving up just yet)

Edited by dei (see edit history)
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  • 2 weeks later...

With temps back to normal (for around here) went to the garage to hang some plastic up. Not the easiest job alone but doable (I have been told I'm too independent :P).

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Did not get it finished as life is pulling in all directions again but it will make things more comfortable to work in when done.

To be continued .......

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What used to be our Friday nights out (back in the day...) found me busy in the garage stapling up the plastic better.

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And then time spent cleaning up of all the stuff needed to be moved for access.

THIS

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This one sheet alone helped the temperature to get in the low 40's so one more 8 x 26 should work just fine.

p.s. It wasn't dinner out but just as satisfying.

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  • 2 weeks later...
your Buick looks great......! Is it a convertible?

Thanks!

However, not kidding myself or anyone else that it is not without issues after some 40 plus years of use / abuse...... but it's mine.:D

And yes it's a rag top.

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Edited by dei (see edit history)
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I am in the same situation, i have a 58 ragtop that was sitting for years. I have been picking away on it getting parts for the "someday" when i can just work on it. My garage is a clutter mess of cars, parts, catch all and i can never get is cleaned up enough to use it. I have been trying to find out more about parts and who has them for 1958's ( I have had great luck with the BCA) but since it was made for only one year i am trying to get all the body trim etc. It is also a factory standard , i am told it is rare?

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I have been picking away on it getting parts for the "someday" when i can just work on it. My garage is a clutter mess of cars, parts, catch all and i can never get is cleaned up enough to use it.

Sorry not responding to you earlier, life issues....

Happy though to hear you have a '58 convert too! Is it a Special also? Not sure if you meant it is a three speed transmission or not by stating it is a standard. If so to me, I would think it indeed is low production if original. Any pictures you wish to share? I'd love to see it.

I knew I was not alone on the clutter / mess issue ! :mad:

Just don't let things go too long before time slips away.....

I have had MANY, MANY great times and memories over the years with my cars and want to create a few more yet! ;)

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I knew I was not alone on the clutter / mess issue ! :mad:

Just don't let things go too long before time slips away.....;)

For years I told myself I would get to things when I retired. I did not consider that when I retired it would be much more difficult to actually bend down to do some of those things. LOL...

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Hi,

yes it is a Special, three speed standard. I have been trying to pick at it along wit hthe rest of the cars in the garage. Being winter here everything is stuffed in the garage and around the cars. I have no heat, and use a torpodo heater when i am out there. this year the snow is so deep that just walking ot the garage is a chore. I will try to get some pictures presentable ones that is when the spring comes and i can get a good shot of it. I also want to figure out what i want to buy as far as trim goes as the closer i look at it the more dings i find. The original owner was a good friend of mine and was a body man, it was in storage long before i got it and was covered up so i did not get to see the scraches, dents etc.... I knew the grill was missing teeth but that was it. I am Active Army, and time is not my own.....but i live for spring summer nights in the garage!

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Hi,

yes it is a Special, three speed standard. I have been trying to pick at it along wit hthe rest of the cars in the garage. Being winter here everything is stuffed in the garage and around the cars. I have no heat, and use a torpodo heater when i am out there. this year the snow is so deep that just walking ot the garage is a chore. I will try to get some pictures presentable ones that is when the spring comes and i can get a good shot of it. I also want to figure out what i want to buy as far as trim goes as the closer i look at it the more dings i find. The original owner was a good friend of mine and was a body man, it was in storage long before i got it and was covered up so i did not get to see the scraches, dents etc.... I knew the grill was missing teeth but that was it. I am Active Army, and time is not my own.....but i live for spring summer nights in the garage!

Wow, your car sounds interesting for sure.

I have actually seen a standard shift '58 only once since I became involved with them in 1968 and that was a base no optioned Special two door sedan.

Definitely take some shots when you can and I might suggest keeping a few somewhere for you to see regularly. I have one or two I use as my home screen background on the computer which helps keep me motivated (along with this Forums).:)

As to the trim, once you take some pictures, there are people here that recondition trim and could give you an idea what it would cost to fix them up. These are getting harder to find now in good condition anyway as replacements. Also know the front grill pieces are common to all series. The difference is made up by the curved side panels that have the turn signals on them. If only we could go to the the Buick Dealership.....

However, try and enjoy the journey. I do and say, "getting there is half the fun".:D

Good luck and keep in touch.

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That is great news....as if I could send the trim out and get it redone it would save a lot of hunting on my part. Everytime i look at the car I find a new ding in the trim:-) I was able to buy a grill and fender....and will try to get other parts that are better than mine, just in case they do not come off the car "clean" or damaged. I have been working on old cars for years and know that back up parts are a key to being able to take risks i would not take if i did not have plan "B" waiting. THe Car sat for years, then got moved to another storage building with out heat , the roof developed a leak in the storage bay next to the front fender and rotted the headlight out of it. That is when i started getting parts as unlike the fellow is Sri Lanki i do not have the skills to rebuild a missing section of the fender:-) The front brakes are frozen, but i got one side apart. I saw a 58 buick taken apart on this site, where the guy got the whole front nose off with only five bolts he said...i lke that idea as i can get at everything, motor, brake lines etc and clean/paint with out climing over the fenders. Any day i can work on my cars is the best way to spend time......in the northeast, the weather is the only thing that keep me from spend my eve out there, even if i can open the doors, the rain, snow makes a mess of the place.

Bustedknuckles has been a life time of trying to get better tools, better space, better shop......!!!

thanks for the chat and info will get a picture soon and a list of trim that may be repairable.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Going to start this post with BRRRRRR ! :P

With high's of only 3 and 5 F around here it is really fun in the garage but at least not getting the snow you all are having to deal with in the North East.....

I tried to make the effort because 1957buickjim emailed me last week to say he was gathering parts to send to the CAD Platter and wondered if I wanted to send some parts too. Since my plan is to get the Special back on the road, popping the hood and seeing what the possibilities (the obvious help me things) were, why not?

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Fortunately with a bit of PB Blaster and the fact I never drove it in the winter, bolts came loose with little effort.

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So that was Saturday and I was to meet up on Sunday with Jim and get a first hand look at his "long roof" 57 wagon until..... I received a call in the early morning from my rental stating there was low water pressure and the boiler heat was not keeping the house warm! Seems the water main two houses over burst and the city had reduced the pressure down just enough to let us use the facilities as it was going to take most of the day to do the repair in frozen ground (and I thought I had a bad job). It took a while to get the boiler working properly so had to cancel what was going to be a fun Sunday.....

In the mean time my son decided to take advantage of a great sale on a tool chest but.... where to put it as he is still at home while finishing his Masters in Engineering? Come to the rescue dad. Now I have this sharing the garage.

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I almost fell on the floor laughing when he said to me, "You can put things on the top if you are careful please". :D

In the mean time, while I'm under the hood, I start taking inventory and deciding if I should take the carb off and rebuild it now or wait and see (which is not a solution to the question)....

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On an impulse I took a moment and put my hand on the fan and belt to turn it some (which I have always been able to do) and.... :mad: STUCK!

I had done this just last July with no issues and now this. Talk about two steps forward and one backwards!

It was time to call it quits anyway but will be taking out the plugs, pouring something into the cylinders and find my breaker bar next!

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When dealing with a stuck engine you will get more leverage with a 2ft tool between the ring gear teeth and the engine block than with a 6 ft tool on the crank bolt. Consider removing the rocker assemblies...a few frozen rockers will lock the entire engine (I have seen this more often on nailheads than stuck pistons).

Willie

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Thanks Willie for the good suggestions.

I'm going to change the oil and filter so while under there it will be a good time to take off the cover and give it a try. This happened to this motor once before when it was in the Limited from siting but I got lucky then by boosting the battery and relying on the starter. Not going to try that now with my old starter although it can't be stuck too bad having moved easily not too long ago. Once it moves I will put a battery to it, leave the plugs out and roll it to get the oil throughout the system.

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I just picked up a engine gasket set for my motor....as my motor did the same thing turned and stoped. I am going to remove the rockers to make sure the valves are not stuck. I may remove the heads to make sure the pistons anr not trying to run in a rusted bore? I was goign ot try to turn it over at the ring gear but may do more damage.....being a standard it may have married the cluch to the flywheel......

Murph

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Due to planned renovations in my basement I had to clear out some shelves which had Hemmings mags and various other car periodicals collecting dust. While going through them doesn't this fall out of one from Feb 1983.

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Not only can I not believe the prices but..... DANG, it was 33 years ago! :eek:

No wonder the top is starting to show it's age.

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So far I have chucked 47 Hemmings and the oldest was from 1981...... (I'm such a hoarder)

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  • 2 weeks later...

WELL ALL RIGHT!

Lady luck has finally drifted back my way! :D

With what seemed like very little force I was able to move the motor last night with the tire iron and flywheel method suggested by Willie. Then, due to the fact I had the plugs out and some stuff in the cylinders, I was able to rotate it completely around by hand at the flywheel.

Can't tell you how this makes me feel about putting the energy back into moving forward to get her on the road again! I'm going to be able to spend this afternoon changing the oil, replacing the rad fluid, replacing the rubber fuel lines and charging up a battery to see if she will come back to life.;)

I'm going to bring the video camera and document the effort be it good or bad. :cool: Of course then I need to corner my son and get him to go through the process of how to post that video (and some others that I have in the locker)........ Stay tuned.

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I'm calling this post:

RAN WHEN PARKED

While it isn't actually running just yet, I was able to get her to move freely and put a charged battery to it and get oil up through the top end.

(plus this is my first video :D - thanks son).

I have to replace some gas line hose, hook up a temporary gas can, get the plugs back and have my fire extinguisher handy before the actual starting up but moving ahead again.

Edited by dei (see edit history)
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It looks as if there is compression coming back through the carb while cranking. This would indicate a problem with the valves. Either an intake valve is not closing or an exhaust is not opening. It may just be an exhaust valve lifter that is not pumped up. It might be a good idea to remove the valve covers and observe valve action while cranking the engine prior to starting. Buick guys would know more about your engine. Good luck.

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Nice to hear. Kinda sounded like it would run to me. One suggestion for future tests like this. Disconnect the wire to the positive side of the coil. No point providing an ignition source outside the engine.

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It looks as if there is compression coming back through the carb while cranking. This would indicate a problem with the valves. Either an intake valve is not closing or an exhaust is not opening. It may just be an exhaust valve lifter that is not pumped up. It might be a good idea to remove the valve covers and observe valve action while cranking the engine prior to starting. Buick guys would know more about your engine. Good luck.

Also sounds like variations in compression. Probably all it needs is to start and drive again. A 'before' and 'after' compression test would be interesting...

Willie

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Also sounds like variations in compression. Probably all it needs is to start and drive again. A 'before' and 'after' compression test would be interesting...

Willie

Willie,

I commend you Sir on your obviously good experienced ear about the variations in compression!

See, I must admit to having difficulty getting all the plugs out due to not finding my thin walled spark plug socket and therefore leaving two of the drivers side spark plugs in.:o

I resorted to grinding down a spark plug socket I had from a cheap set and even then it was such a tight fit in the head I was afraid of breaking off those two plugs and do not have any spares right now so left them. So, you did indeed hear the roll / compression variations. Good call!:)

Of course it was my lack of patience that lead me to "give it a try" knowing this motor should be (in my mind) OK having "Ran When Parked".

I hope to try and "fire it up" Friday or Saturday once I reinstall the remaining plugs using a fresh can of gas temporarily and keep moving along.....

Of course I will be videoing the results (good or bad).

Edited by dei (see edit history)
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Nice to hear. Kinda sounded like it would run to me. One suggestion for future tests like this. Disconnect the wire to the positive side of the coil. No point providing an ignition source outside the engine.

Noted for future tests John.

However, next test will require full ignition. ;)

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Hey Doug! THAT IS GREAT NEWS!! Glad that the old ride was just sleeping, and not dead!!! That gives me hope as well when I get ready to give the old long roof a try to start in a few weeks. Iguess with all this warm (hahaha) weather we have been having, it is a lot easier to work on the car. I hope mine sounds like that when I give her a go! Keep up the work, my friend!

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No video yet as a couple of things have taken the time I need to spend on the Special.

I've been dealing with health issues recently with my Dad that has been diagnosed as stage 4 Cancer which started about 4 weeks ago and requires numerous doctors appointments, tests and more appointments etc as I'm sure some of you may have experienced and been through.

Up until Friday's appointment the prognosis was not very good. However, there is a procedure explained to us all on Friday that, should it be successful, would present him with another 3 maybe 4 more years.

Right now he is not suffering any pain or major effects (which is good) and is a good candidate for this procedure so we spent most of the weekend together on this positive note. :)

At soon to be 91 the doctor's feel he will do well and told him, not to go out and spend all his money at the Casino just yet!

I did spend a few hours on the car (at his encouragement) and while finding the fuel pump works just fine and the carb seems to be performing properly, I have no spark at the plugs. Need to dig deeper into checking the points, coil and see what is going on and find a stool! With having her jacked up as high as it is, even at 6ft 4inch it is quite the stretch getting at that distributor!

Who designed that placement?:eek: (or is it possibly my age... LOL)

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Good luck to Dad! Never an easy diagnosis, but that's an encouraging prognosis. Even though you did not ask, we are sending prayers and positive thoughts your way.

I also hear your pain on that distributor. I have found that the day after leaning over the fender on these things causes me aches in my chest. The newer engines are much easier in this regard, as long as you remember to keep your hands out of the fan.

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When leaning over a fender, I have found that your arms get shorter as your belly gets bigger :rolleyes:. If you have power at the coil and at the points file the points and try that until you can get a new set.

Willie

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