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

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On 9/16/2019 at 7:48 PM, lancemb said:

Glad you avoided an accident.  I can't believe the negligence of some drivers, especially when there are old cars on the road.  I'm sure that driver just thought those cars belonged in a museum or junkyard.  Very sad.


The driver was way too young I think to even know what a car museum is plus she was blond to boot. (Sorry, just calling them like I experienced this one...) 😧

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Had time tonight before supper to open up the garage at home and move a few things around.

I came upon the under the seat heating tube I took out of the Limited parts cars and wondered, maybe I could clean it up and straighten the fins like 95Cardinal did on his Caballero.







With a little cleaner and patience with that putty knife plugged away.

Those fins are aluminium and can be straightened carefully with some care. Thanks Joe!



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There will be more cleaning to get to the quality Joe did with his but it is a start.




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These little things are helping move in the direction of getting at the Limited.

I had worked on cleaning some of the chrome on the bumpers for this car last week and while not perfect, they will do for drivers quality once the engine is rebuilt and back in.



The condition of this car is such that it deserves to be on the road again sitting beside the Special.



Having my sons gear out of here and slowly getting things moved has things to the point I can not only see the car but can actually open the drivers door again after many, many years.








The odometer shows 57,000 miles and believe it to be accurate but the place I stored it at (who I trusted) was trying to do me a favour by starting it a couple times a year to run the engine and move it a bit to keep the brakes free. 


What he didn't tell me was, one year (fall) it would not fire and after repeated efforts just let it sit. 

I did not get out for about two years after that and when trying (with a new battery) to start it... the motor was locked up! 😠

Needless to say I got it out of there and brought it home on a trailer and parked it, pulling the plugs and soaking it with a mixture of tranny fluid and diesel fuel for a long time... 


It finally came down to pulling the valve covers and rocker arms and still it would not budge.

I later took the intake and heads off to which a bit of tapping the top of the pistons with wood and hammer it budged. With more encouragement from a tire iron on the flywheel it finally rotated all the way around while putting oil on top of the open pistons.


I took the motor and the transmission out and have the motor on an engine stand oiled and covered but it will need to be completely rebuilt and I'm not quite there yet on that financially. 


What I will be doing is sorting the best of the front chrome and sheet metal I have, priming and painting plus cleaning up the frame with the body on like what 57buickJim did with his Special.


Obviously this is not going to be a concentrated restoration as there are things I want to do on the Special before the National next year over this winter.


All I can say at this point is what I tell my wife, at least it keeps me out of the bars and you'll know where I am.

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Isn't there any shroud over that underseat heater core?  It just radiates with no fan? Looks like it takes quite the beating under there. 


And it also looks like you have been successful keeping the rodents out of the Limited's interior? 

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On 9/16/2019 at 7:48 PM, lancemb said:

Glad you avoided an accident.  I can't believe the negligence of some drivers, especially when there are old cars on the road.  I'm sure that driver just thought those cars belonged in a museum or junkyard.  Very sad.

I agree. Also most people don't realize these old cars have drum brakes and don't stop as quickly as a crotch rocket. On more than one occasion I have thought I was going to put a Honda Civic bumper into the front seat.

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There is no shroud for the under seat core.

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5 hours ago, JohnD1956 said:

Isn't there any shroud over that underseat heater core?  It just radiates with no fan? Looks like it takes quite the beating under there. 


And it also looks like you have been successful keeping the rodents out of the Limited's interior? 


As Smartin stated there is no shroud so indeed they do take a beating from the people sitting in the back seat plus the tendency to shove things under there from the front of the seat.

It is just a radiant heater and believe me does a wonderful job when it is on.


Fortunately the body is tight on the Limited so the little buggers haven't gotten in yet. 

I also put dryer sheets inside that I was told they don't like. Plus it keeps the interior from smelling musty.

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5 hours ago, CanadianWildcat said:

I agree. Also most people don't realise these old cars have drum brakes and don't stop as quickly as a crotch rocket. On more than one occasion I have thought I was going to put a Honda Civic bumper into the front seat.


Actually, the brakes on Joe's Monarch do very well for drum brakes.

The problem is though that with the wet pavement, I applied a bit of force on the pedal and without the anti-lock brake system we have today, they locked up and skidded for a bit.

The fact he also runs bias ply tires on the wet pavement was a factor too I think. 



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With the weekend broken up between unloading my trailer for my son to use getting a load of 0 to 3/4 stone, a trip to the vet with our 18 year old cat and going out for dinner with our long time friends, no time for the Buick's but decided to take in the second last Monday night Cruise-In at Brews & Cues.

Weather was mild so top down was OK for me as my wife was to join us later than I wanted to be there.



It filled up while we ate so lots to see after a feed of chicken wings.


You know how some cars sometimes just grab your attention? This Corvette did it for me.



To me it looked like it just came out of the Showroom!



This Thunderbird behind the Vette has a certain appeal for me...



There is no awards for cars here so people bring what runs and works in progress are becoming more popular like this 1957 Oldsmobile 4 door hardtop. This model had the three piece rear window matching the roof body lines.



I loved that the owner of the black "classic" Corvette parked far enough away so "he" wouldn't nick my door. hahaha


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I was introduced to the owner of this 1958 Eldorado convertible at the last show and getting to know Tony more. Found out he bought it locally in 1967 (beating my 1972 purchase with the Special). he did the car about three years ago to it's present condition and wish I had the resources and the space as it is for sale.





From this shot you can see Cadillac and Buick shared the windshield and vent designs.

I love the fibreglass boot cover.



The Biarritz convertible had a low production of 815 and has model specific trim which I would imagine are like hens teeth to find today.





Smitten? Oh Ya!

Have to remain content to know the owner and be allowed to get this close to admire it...


Before the daylight started to close the door prises were drawn.



When the 50/50 winner received the 345 dollars the crowd quickly fired up their cars and orderly headed out.

I waited for my other friend (Tony) to come by as he drove his 1958 Buick Special sedan tonight and wanted to get a few shots before leaving.



These are the only two 1958 Buick's here in the Windsor area and with most people not having seen them before Tony and I draw quite a crowd when the cars are together.



His car has an all original interior with a nice paint job and re-chroming done.


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I need to mention that there was a separate raffle draw on a light for a buck a ticket and knowing we would not be there next week for the last show bought 5 tickets. Well,,,

Didn't my number come up!!



Nice to have a bit of luck now and then...

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We have been away since Thursday (unfortunately not in the Special) and planning on taking her to the last Brews & Cues Cruise-in Monday night as it will be the last one for this year.


We went to my niece's wedding in Tennessee and thought I'd share a bit.


We have a 2009 Dodge Caravan  with the 3.3 V6 and kept an eye on things as I was concerned about the mountains and how it would do.

I must say that on flat land it will cruise at 80 to 90 mph with ease keeping up with traffic that even though the posted speed limit is 70, one just can't drive I-75 that way without having the "Sky Pilots" passing you on the right at their first opportunity!!

Cruising through the long grades surprisingly didn't become a problem but the odd time with the cruise control on it would scream trying to maintain the 70 mph so took it off at the bottom of the hill and listened for the shifting to avoid that as much as possible. 

It only has 42,800 miles on it and plan to keep it for many years to come.

What I do like about it is the stow and go features and for the two of us provides plenty of easy access for the wife to pack everything including the kitchen sink...



We stayed in Pigeon Forge, Tn and got there early enough to tour around seeing some of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

We have been here once before but that was more of a pass through on our honey moon way back so this time was perfect to try and take it all in.



My brother-in-law works for the National Park Service and was able to take us to areas the general public doesn't usually get to see and we weren't disappointed.

He told us to watch for deer and that with close to 700 bears throughout the Park, chances were good we might see one.

This buck wasn't phased by us driving up at all.



This black bear on the other hand didn't stick around too long.



We did the tourist thing and went into Gatlinburg exploring the small shops spread through out the side of the hills and after sighting the bear just had to do the obligatory photo op on the main street.



I won't bore you with details of the wedding but will say the venue was tucked in the foothills 15 miles off the main drag. Getting there on the two lane winding road (sometimes with no guard rails) was interesting getting there and even more interesting going back to the Hotel at the end of the night in the total darkness!!!


One nice touch was the '51 Ford truck parked out in the pasture.



We decided to come home a day early which went smoothly and was pleased with the performance of our van.

Total miles driven: 1258.9 miles

Total fuel used: 54.87 gallons of regular at a cost of $141.85 USD

Miles per gallon: 22.92 mpg


Pretty sure it would have been hard on the Special taking the route we did and those Mountains... 

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3 hours ago, dei said:

Pretty sure it would have been hard on the Special taking the route we did and those Mountains... 

Easy in a 55.  You need one! :D

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5 hours ago, dei said:



Pretty sure it would have been hard on the Special taking the route we did and those Mountains... 


 What mountains?  I think your Special would have SAILED over those little hills.  I know my Special would.:P


  Thanks for the report. Glad you liked the trip and had a safe one.



 P.S.   Is that the Special I hear crying over the slight? 

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Attended the last Cruise-In at Brews & Cues for the year and man was it packed!

I had to park along side the building (like others) as the grass parking where I usually go was jammed full!



Sure glad the Fire Marshal didn't come around... The Bar might have been sited for fire access if he was there.



Great night, Great turnout with lots to see!









The organiser had almost 60 door prises to give by draw ticket which you receive when driving in for free.

The 50/50 was a nice $525.00 due to the size of the crowd and held everyone's interest.



The Monday night's are officially over for the season but there are still some things in the works before the snow flies here. :)

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While at the last Monday night Cruise-in I overheard two guys talking about next Saturday and touring to Erieau which Cindy and I did awhile back. I asked if it was open to anyone and they said sure come and join the fun.

Art told me to stop by his house to get a map and details during the week so had to tell Cindy we were going.

With an easy start time of meeting around 10:30 I took my time topping fluids up and with the cooler temps knew I had to put the top up. It has been down since the end of August and with it only 50 degrees out and a cloudy day.... took awhile to get it to latch as that vinyl does shrink some. I decided to keep the car running with the defrost on high and after about 5 minutes got it latched.

We caught the group enroute bringing up the rear which was fine.

I knew a few cars from cruise-in nights and shows but my wife didn't know anyone but with a few introductions at the first rest stop, it didn't take long to make new friends.



We were 12 cars in total and the lead car was this coupe who did a great job setting the pace and keeping us all together. 



We found out some of this group travels on "Rod Runs" so doing this tour was a piece of cake and we enjoyed it!


Taking secondary roads helped and bringing up the rear presented a few photo ops.



Like this one on the way into Erieau.



With it's great beaches on Lake Erie and spectacular fishing in Rondeau Bay it is a summer sort of place but cruising on a nice early fall day has it's rewards.

Found lot's of parking right in front of the restaurant, Molly & DJ's where we had a good leisurely lunch and conversation.






All too soon it was time to pay the bills and head out.

Being a peninsula there is only one road in and out.



This single road is only protected from Lake Erie buy this berm and armour rock wall.

With water levels being as high as they are hope it will do it's job especially when the lake ice gets pushed with any hard south winds...



A lot of the terrain is reclaimed marsh land which the rich black soil is good for growing onion crops.





Taking more secondary roads we did another pit stop just on the outskirts of Chatham.



Fully refreshed we travelled on the south river road along the Thames River which ends at Lake St. Clair. From there went along Lake St. Clair till almost outside Windsor. Along the way a few cars departed the group and we kept going till reaching the City Marina to take a shot or two.





All in all a great day meeting new people and with the car performing well enjoyed the early fall outing. 

The trip was a total of 176.3 miles and burned 56 dollars CDN of regular fuel. 

I noticed a bit of spark knock on that tank every once in awhile so filled up with premium for the next road trip which I hope will be for a fall colour tour.

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Having stated the Cougar was sold, it took awhile to get the windows working which I promised would happen as condition of the sale.

I replaced the gear sets of both but then the issue was the rocker switch on the passenger side...

I did a brief search locally and then on EBay with little success. It seems like having the Buick (before the internet) when it wasn't old enough for dealers to have stock on hand and then after market guys weren't finding it worth while to advertise things for sale due to the age of the car yet...

 Confirming it was the switch I brought it back to the mechanic who did the safety and we figured out the switch is the same as the door lock rocker switch so switched them out (no pun intended) and talked to the new owner who said he could live with that as the drivers side door lock switch still works fine.

He came by last night after work and we completed the paper work so he can get plates and will be coming Saturday to drive home.



In the 12 years I've taken care of this car I have only driven it 5,000 kms (3000 miles) which I feel wasn't doing it any favours so passing it on to a fellow that I think has the appreciation for what it is.


I now have a bit more money to put towards the Limited I didn't have before so actually no regrets with the sale.

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As of 8:30PM last night I watched the Cougar head for it's new home.

Saying I was good with the sale, still had mixed feelings knowing it's not mine anymore.


I inherited it from a customer turned friend who had purchased it new in '89. That was 2007. 

She also left me her '78 Dodge Magnum which she used as her "winter beater" to save the Cougar. That car I donated to our Car Club for them to auction off raising a bit of much needed money. The body was BAD but the 360 ran like a trouper and know the guy who bought it wanted it only for the motor.


When I got the Cougar it had 69,823 kms showing on the digital dash and yesterday it showed 74,312 kms. Enjoyed every one of those 4,489 kms  (short of the power windows giving up) but the air worked great and kept the wife comfortable. 

Might see it around occasionally and hope the new owner has many good experiences too.



Being our Canadian Thanksgiving weekend, time to get more organised on the Limited...


(In the back of my mind contemplating selling the Nash next year.)


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Calling the next few Posts "Plays With Buicks".


With last weekend being our Thanksgiving and family obligations over, spent a few evenings this week in the garage at home with the Limited moving things, with the end goal of making a flat work space for various projects.

Nothing picture worthy at this point but good to have my hands on things related to the Limited after a long absence there. (and it is easy to step in there, play a bit and go back in the house when having had enough)

The garage is insulated and needs a heating system but even with an electric heater for the time in there takes the chill away when it gets really cold out.


One of the things I moved around was the seat back for the Roadmaster I had the bracket put in place and brought home to check it's position in the car.

I made up my mind I would also take the whole seat out of the car and bring it to Stan to look at it as a unit (which I should have done in the first place...) so made phone calls to arrange to do that today.

With arrangements confirmed I cleaned out the trailer, put the seat back in and filled up the truck before picking up Joe to make our first stop in Leamington (where the Roadmaster is stored).


Fortunately he was not working since I needed a hand to carry the seat out of the car and then between the parked cars also being stored there.


I must have planed on taking the seat out at some point early on because it was totally unbolted from the floor which made things a bit easier to disconnect the passenger side seat back and take it out which made the seat bottom less awkward to get out without scratching anyone's car...

Having the top down helped too but that is another story. The system will need a total overhaul for sure but I have a new white replacement top and rear window at home in the basement.

Having had this car for many years, when attending flea markets (early terms for Swap Meets) I bought what I could for any of the '58's I could afford and get my hands on.

Things went smoothly removing the seat and I got a good look at the floor noting where metal will need to be replaced but it really isn't too bad. I think with the floor panels my son is going to have to teach me how to use his mig welder... 



Most of the replacement is located in the back seat floors so probably a good place for me to learn...



I believe those coil springs came from a complete spare rear end Dad bought from a back then Auto Wreckers when he needed the rear Universal Joint for the original Limited he gave me when I turned 16. 
Guess my wife is right... I don't throw anything out!


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So the Roadmaster will sit like this for awhile (?) as I focus on the Limited when time and money allows, but it won't be forgotten.



As we were outside chatting with the building owner this truck rolled in (he was expected) so had to chat a bit more.



The engine and drive train mod isn't my thing but the picture doesn't capture the quality the body and paint deserves.


It was time to head on to Blenheim as the day was growing short...

When we pulled up to Stan's we see this.



Since I was last at Stan's shop he received a call regarding this Packard.

The vehicle was being driven in a parade down east by the owner and suddenly there was a mashing of steel and water on the road! Seems the fan shaft broke and the fan went into the honey comb rad tearing a big gash in it and breaking the water pump cast. Stan is having the rad build by the only supposedly honey comb manufacturer in North America out in California while the casting and shaft is being dealt with here in Ontario.

This unit is a documented Detroit Michigan Fire Department vehicle which Stan showed us a black and white blown up picture.



The other vehicle is a Cadillac Hennessy bodied hearse. This has the huge wood panels and glass side windows. Stan says it will likely take him three years to completion. We will have to come back and watch it's progress.



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With the complete seat on a bench in Stan's work shop we together checked his work on the placement of the seat bracket.

I had thought it looked a bit off when I put it on in the car but...

It turns out the seat bumpers / stops are hard and a bit crushed allowing the back to lean too far back which contributed to the appearance of being too low.

The cure will be to replace those stops and possibly put thicker ones on as with imagining the reason the bracket broke, it must have been a big force, without taking all the upholstery off to see, maybe the seat frame might be bent down some?

A guess for sure but spacers for now will fix the issue.


Once the bracket was welded up we loaded it back in the trailer as a unit (after cooling down), I settled up and we headed for home.



The ride home was uneventful and dropped Joe of at home with plans to meet later for dinner as thanks.



This little exercise wasn't a restoration but an effort to preserve the seat and it's patina (if you will).

Obviously there is damage to the seat bottom and the foam has hardened requiring replacement at some point but with some elbow grease and time, what, be ready for a show? No, but is original to the car when produced and a guide for the right person that does the upholstery work. 

All too often I see 1958 Buick's for sale and right away I notice upholstery is nice, but not quite right. This car deserves to be done right (eventually...).


Thanks so much again Lance for your efforts to get me that seat back as a source for the bracket!


Too be continued...

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To finish up the "Plays With Buicks" posts...


I decided to take time to clean up the seat today and afterwards put it in the garage with the Special rather than take it back out to the Roadmaster and gather the dust out there again.


I started with washing a corner then using a leather cleaner/conditioner to see how it would come out.



Kept at it and really lost track of time...



For what it is, really pleased with the results.



I looked on the shelf in the garage and saw the seat side panels from the Limited parts car sitting there so thought, why not make it completed.



I cleared some space to put it inside and maybe looking at it now and then will keep me motivated to get at it sooner than later...


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With contract work having come in I have not had time for the Buick's.

Deadlines when self employed means doing what needs to be done whatever it takes and today was no exception.

Having finished up this Sunday at 2:30 I decided, with the sun finally coming out, I would go and get the Special out to go for a ride.



I drove her home and asked Cindy if she wanted to go for a ride?

Sure was the answer and off we went.


My work has been at a Cemetery where my In-laws are buried and with not having gone out at our Thanksgiving to honour them, decided it was time.



We have never done this pilgrimage in the car before but with the Fall colours starting, felt it was "Special" for both of us.


After having worked here for the past 5 days and contemplating the inevitable, we took time to discuss what is something we can not avoid.

With the changing Fall colours it was actually the perfect time and setting for this conversation.


On our way to the Main Mausoleum I had to stop to take this shot.

Hope this does not offend anyone but we both found it so peaceful...



Having paid our respects and given ourselves something to contemplate we set on out for a ride.

Decided we would go out to one of our favourite places for an ice cream cone looking for more fall colour shots only to find it closed for the season. 

Not discouraged we headed on home to a pork loin dinner awaiting in the oven.


Had to take this shot for a bit of colour at home before going back to her garage till later.



Monday will be the start of another full week but have plans for next Saturday.

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Having a heavy work schedule this past two weeks, no time for playing with Buick's.


Over the weekend though I did try to get lawn work caught up as the forecast was for a bit of snow and there is nothing like wet leaves leaves to try and rake up or better yet, use my new to me (old) yard vac and clog it up.



With 20 mature trees on my property this little bugger really does a good job.



I also did the lawn at home which surprisingly needed the grass cut but that was OK too. After putting equipment away and ensuring the trailer was emptied out, settled down for the night waiting to see if the weatherman was going to be right in the morning.


Opening the drapes around 8am this is what I saw.



While not unexpected, the new forecast was to snow ALL day as radar showed a storm stretching from Kansas to Chicago, across Michigan up to almost Georgian Bay and down to Ohio with us in the middle.


Watched most of the day from my living room window and at 5:30 took this shot.



Time to grab a bite to eat, dawn the apparel and get to work on the still falling snow. 5 inches so far and counting....


Might be a looong winter.😧

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