Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Has anyone else been watching Reality Rides on Velocity every sunday?

It's a car restoration show which is rebuilding a Buick 55 Special back to it's former glory!

I thought i'd let you guys know as it's not like the other 'reality' shows as you are taken step by step through the build, with no BS and no fake deadlines!

I have the vimeo link if any of you guys want to catch up before episode 3 is on air next week!

Link to post
Share on other sites

I watched the vimeo link the other day and agree with you that it is actually pretty good. My only criticism is that they need to move a little faster or they will never get that Buick running!!

Please post the link again as I cannot get the extended cable channels which include Velocity.

Link to post
Share on other sites
I watched the vimeo link the other day and agree with you that it is actually pretty good. My only criticism is that they need to move a little faster or they will never get that Buick running!!

Please post the link again as I cannot get the extended cable channels which include Velocity.

Yeah I can see what you mean! I'm looking forward to the next episode being on air!

Link to post
Share on other sites
..... buick man thinks they move a lot faster than he moves on a project. I guess they are just practicing because if they ever get serious they would be working on a 57 ! ;)

Haha. 55's are my favourite! can't wait to see the color they put on the car

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've seen the first 3 episodes of the '55 series.

I like that this show is more realistic and appears to have fewer staged scenes, although there is still way too much repetition in the editing.

I don't like that they are moving TOO slowly. Where most shows can rebuild a car in an episode or 2, they took 2 episodes to pick the car up from the PO!

Is anyone personally familiar with either the buyer or the rather unique seller?

Link to post
Share on other sites
I wish they would not use the term 'restoration', cause that it ain't. Maybe resto-rod, resto-mod, fix-up, refurbish, personalize...

I don't understand how it's not a restoration. It is a complete restoration. They aren't building it into a hot rod. They are putting it back into it's original condition

Link to post
Share on other sites

"They are putting it back into it's original condition"...Nope, I have seen the car and it would not do well in any judging that used originality as criteria. To be kind it is 'personalized' to the point of being a very, very nice car....but not restored to original.

Willie

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 months later...
"They are putting it back into it's original condition"...Nope, I have seen the car and it would not do well in any judging that used originality as criteria. To be kind it is 'personalized' to the point of being a very, very nice car....but not restored to original.

Willie

Ok, as the producer of the series and the owner of the car, I have to respond. (Just now catching up on reading this forum) I have spent the past year working on a new series that features stories of some of the rarest and most important cars in the world. Many of these are multi-million dollar cars from the 20's and 30's. Spent time with top museum curators in Europe and the US and been to many of the most prestigious concours events that exist. It's been fun and exciting. But the term "restoration" is used loosely in many of these contexts. Our car was restored with a few minor modifications, one was for comfort (dash A/C) the few others were to improve safety. As we actually use this car it needed to be useful for both show and real use. I am not a big fan of "trailer queens" as I believe a car is meant to be driven. If you want to get into the semantics, then yes it's not a "pure" restoration, but it IS a restoration nonetheless.

In regards to competing? This car recently won it's class in a concours, it placed in the top 10 at the Buick Nationals, it has won "Best of Show" at over a dozen shows across the state, and attracts large crowds wherever it appears. Most importantly, it has now been seen by literally millions of viewers across the nation on TV and educated and excited so many new people about Buick history. In essence this car has done more towards creating new interest in old Buick's than any other in any single show or competition. And 99% of those who see it in person, don't really care about the subtle changes we made, the majority are not even aware of them. So if the goal is to spread the word and encourage the next generation to appreciate and understand Buick history, I'd say this Buick is doing it's job extremely well. Sometimes being 100% authentic is not all that relevant.

Link to post
Share on other sites

To be sure, the car is very nice. It was done to a high degree of execution, too, from what I've seen. Completely original it is not. BUT . . . let's up that ante a little by saying "Not original for that particular model and year of Buick". It does still have the Buick engine and DynaFlow in it, which should count for something, all things considered. As I recall, the interior fabrics/vinyls are not correct for the car, but were used in Buicks of a little newer vintage. I believe the paint color is a GM color, rather than otherwise. As Brian stated, the changes were made for better useability and such, while still keeping the basic "Buick theme" of things. There are some things under the hood I would do differently, for a more OEM look, but that's just me. Additionally, I'd probably upgrade to a self-learning fuel injection system, electronic ignition, and possibly some power brake upgrades . . . all well-hidden as "incognito upgrades"--unless somebody knew what they were looking at.

In the BCA realm of the 400 Point System, it would not do well due to "the changes" made in the resurrection of that car from what it was. Yet it doesn't really fit the mold of the traditional "Modified Class" vehicle, either, to me. In many respects, once you deduct for the incorrect interior items, the incorrect paint color, incorrect wheels, radial tires, and updates under the hood, you end up with a very nicely-done, over-restored Buick (the 400 Point System has no deducts for "over-restoration", as I recall). And a Buick that is very much nicer than when it was new. It DOES gain attention, as noted.

The "ongoing problem" becomes . . . whether or not the average spectator KNOWS it's not all "stock" or not. If they don't, then such vehicles can give them an incorrect baseline against all other similar Buicks will be judged by them. If they do, they can appreciate what's been changed and "Why", very possibly. In any event, the car gets peoples' attention (for many reasons!), which can be a huge PLUS in many respects. Unfortunately, this "ongoing problem" is NOT unique to just this car, but to so many "restored" vehicles we see at shows and other places.

As we now have several generations of younger car enthusiasts who've grown up with "basecoat/clearcoat paint systems" (and their related "high shine"), if they saw a good acrylic enamel paint job, they'd probably deduct in the judging activity, much less an acrylic lacquer paint job that was shot a little too dry and then sanded/buffed to make it look better. These same enthusiasts would not know what "ignition points" might be, possibly, or that a carburetor does not need 50+psi of fuel pressure to work. THEIR points of reference are definitely different than what many of ours might be. Just depends upon which target market you want to play to in how you build a vehicle.

Regards,

NTX5467

Link to post
Share on other sites

" ....... Sometimes being 100% authentic is not all that relevant. " This Point is well made here as is the NTX5467 response above.

100% authentic Trailer queens are a high water mark of authenticity in a plastic throw-a-away world and do need to be noted as the bench mark. These can be total restoration cars or the even rarer holy grail of them all, the true simple preservation originals many of which are still good weather drivers. On the other hand, Creative car restorations demonstrate the opposite spectrum but are and need to be part of this great hobby as well. The in-betweens of all sorts need their places in the sun too. What I think most preserve-a-holics crave, myself included is the embracing and beholding of the clear simple perfection of what the original moment in time gave that car when it came into this world. Kinda of a kinetic freeze of time and space.

Therefore we think it is vitally important that these parameters and differences be identified and taught between each class and type of restoration. That it be respected and appreciated but at the same time not allow these same lines of distinctions to become blurred, dumbed down or nullified in any way so as to let the "norm" of what an old car restoration is, become a "what-ever" and or an "irrelevant".

Edited by buick man (see edit history)
Link to post
Share on other sites

As a community of Buick enthusiasts we have a long established set of standards and criteria to preserve, arrived at over time by our community. That requires some level of conformity, much like simply being an American in the times our pre-mid 1960's cars were built.

Random acts of an individual within a community, however justified, still detract from the basic mission of that community. I like what NTX wrote.

When I watch these caricatures of cars and hobbyists on TV (although I usually shut them off and read a book), I look at the societal issues of individual preferences taking priority over over many of our community relationships.

Of course, who would think an old fart who drove a Buick would think like that? Anything in this picture of a stock Buick catch your eye?

post-46237-143142400272_thumb.jpg Bernie

Edited by 60FlatTop (see edit history)
Link to post
Share on other sites

I appreciate the invite to the spring get together and it sounds like fun. I'll check my schedule and try to make it out there. Don't get me wrong, I much prefer accurate and original cars. I'm not a real fan of hot rods and it makes my skin crawl to see an old car that could be restored chopped up into some crazy mess of a concoction. With our car we walked a fine line between a restoration and what I considered more practical for today's use. I also wanted A/C that worked like new technology and a stereo that played off my iphone. I LOVE driving my old Buick around town and turning heads wherever it goes. It attracts as much attention from the teenagers as it does retirees. I am also the first to point out to anyone who asks, the modifications we made. I have friends with extremely rare 100 point cars, even some pebble beach cars. But I'd not trade my Buick for anything else, she's on the road and people love looking at her as much as I like driving her.

Of the cars we own, it's my favorite although the '52 MG TD MK II is certainly way more fun to drive and more of a thrill on the road. The Buick for me is just a perfect mix of comfort and pleasure. I completely understand what a 100 point car is and part of me was just giving you guys a hard time. I certainly admire the effort it takes to make sure every bolt is correct, but I prefer ice cold air blowing in my face on a hot Texas summer day. Next I have my sights set on a 1930 Auburn Roadster or even one of the authentic speedsters, but I have a few pennies to save up before then. (one can always dream)

Our series "Reality Rides" is not about 100% accurate restorations, it's about building fun quality cars for the average car enthusiast. However, in season 2 we built a 100 point 1940 Lincoln Cabriolet that has been invited to Pebble Beach and a 1942 Dodge Command car for a wide variety. Season 3 is all about hot rods. Not my cup of tea but it's for our audience base. Gotta throw them a bone you know.

In our new series Magnificent Motorcars (starts airing on July 5) we focus on the worlds greatest cars. Certainly all original and every bolt is perfect, just as the factory or designer had intended. Perhaps this is the series for you, the more serious automotive enthusiast. We travel both the US and Europe to tell the stories of cars most will never see, many hidden away in private collections. Wondrous cars, each that left their mark on history. Then in October we launch "The Curators Vault" covering the worlds greatest automotive museums. I am very broad minded and more than understand each perspective of the automotive spectrum. I am also intent in bringing better automotive programming to the airwaves, I'm very tired of the fake realty garbage out there. So I am guessing that between these 3 series, I will have stories for everyone of you to enjoy, no matter what your automotive passion may be. So yeah, I salute you guys with the original stock and near perfect automobiles. The time, effort, and passion it takes to keep them that way. It's not about how much it costs, it's about the art and the history.

It's still fun to ruffle your feathers a bit though... ;-)

Link to post
Share on other sites

I tried to find the '40 Lincoln connected to Reality Rides and came up with an Old Rides one. Is that it, or do you have a link to the one you did? I see some videos for sale on the others. I might buy one. (Might even be interested in wholesale quantities).

I have developed a weak spot between the ears for '40's Lincolns recently and may end up with a major project in my garage

Alth0ugh Lincoln's are a bit off topic here the underlining topic is mild modifications. Can anyone find a mod in this 1949 Cosmopolitan picture?

048.JPG

Fun to ruffle feathers, huh?

Bernie

Link to post
Share on other sites

You gotta be an old guy to know that is a Cadillac 346 flathead. The plugs that are missing are AC M8's. I have a couple of sets on hand. The hood hinges, wiper transmission, and heater arrangement have all been modified. This is the classic Lincoln Fongoola. It surely wasn't modified for safety and convenience.

About two weeks after I bought my '64 Riviera in 1978 a friend of mine and I saw this car sitting outside with a '59 Cadillac Fleetwood 75 we went to look at. I have been trying NOT to buy it since it resurfaced in the fall of 2011. Garage space is the only thing holding me back and I am weakening.

Although I really do like modified cars I have been buying Buicks. This is probably the one.

1949 was the first year for V8's in the post-war Lincoln. The Cosmopolitan got the 337 Ford flathead torquer from big trucks. So the real problem is: do you restore a late 1950's custom or uncustomize it?

If I was just a little smarter it would be a moot point.

Bernie

Link to post
Share on other sites

For me (and others who "grew up with" OR were around the older cars when they were "New" or "Used Cars"), to reallly understand and appreciate EACH of those cars is to know what made them unique and desireable, back then. The sound the doors made when they openned and latched shut. The sound of the starter. The sound of the engine and exhaust note. The sound it made when you put it in gear. How responsive it was to the throttle at the stop sign (or red light when the light turned green). How the transmission acted and the sounds it made. How everything worked together to make it "drive" the way it did. How the radio sounded, too! ALL of that, and more, combine to make each car what it was and how it acted, back then. Each of those visual and sensory inputs NOW serves to rekindle "memories of times past", which can be very seriously-significant to us.

And, as we might have followed these cars as they aged from new, we might also have determined their "weak points" and "strong points" of design, operation, and durability. Even MORE things to have memories about -- good and not so good, but all "memories" anyway. Kind of like "Model year 1956 had this problem, but that was fixed mid-year by this change, which is what the factory replacement parts for the problem became for the prior-production vehicles. You need to find THAT part, if possible."

In many cases, it's those "prior memories/experiences/observations" which can drive us to like certain vehicles OR to pursue similar vehicles in more recent times. Knowing their design "issues", we can now upgrade a few things to " make it better" (mechanically) without completely destroying those great sounds and "feels" we liked about the car when it was newer. To me, newer paint systems and possibly different interior fabrics (in factory pattern) might not detract from things too much, but when you mess with those mechanical sensory inputs too much, THAT can be a "deal-breaker" for me.

By observation, in many marque enthusiast groups, there can be "acceptable modifications" which nobody really gets excited about. Like adding a Chrysler Mopar Perf electronic ignition system to replact the points system, hiding the electronic box in the process, so that all that is seen is the "extra wire" going to the distributor, for example. Or a similar OEM-based ignition system upgrade to something more modern and reliable. Or a more modern carburetor for better driveability and fuel economy, too, under the factory air cleaner. Or making a drum brake car into a "factory-option-correct" power disc brake car. Or some of the other "bolt-on" things like heavier-duty shocks and such.

I greatly appreciate what Carl and his crew accomplished with the '55 Special. That it still has the Buick Nailhead V-8 and DynoFlow in it, too! The basic "flavor" of the Buick is still there, just spiffed-up in some places. The wire wheels were a flashy addition, but I might have liked to see wheel covers instead. I might also respectfully comment that I'd rather have the "Reality Rides" Buick over Jay Leno's similar Roadmaster, just because there's "more Buick" there.

Getting back to one of the previous comments . . . I feel there DOES need to be some correct examples of vehicles which are preserved "as built", "end of the assembly line correct", not unlike the original-stated purpose of the Buick 400 Point Judging System. Correctly-restored to THAT standard, not to "make it better", specifically, or do re-do all of the "holidays" in the assembly and production of the individaul vehicle (door alignment, drips in weatherstrip adhesive, mis-aligned door/quarter panel moldings). In many cases from the GM mid-'50s, "They came that way". Not perfect, but "that way".

In the case of the '69 Dodge Daytona "Wing Car", to do a correct restoration means accurately-duplicating the THREE layers of overspray on the underbody, from EACH of the three times the car was painted (assembly line is "one", other conversion shop activities account for the other two). To some, it would look "sloppy", but IF you know what you're looking at, it's "correct" to be that way. Similar with inspection stamps/paint daubs/grease pencil makrings. In some parts of the car hobby, these things are highly-documented and "known about", but in other marque groups, only limited interest exists (as few worried about those things in earlier times, in those particular vehicle owners' groups).

BUT I guess that as long as we can keep our memories alive, possibly making memories for others in the process, we've accomplished something. Maybe not having "fully educated" everybody about what's right and what's not, but hopefully generated enough interest that "independent study" with "credible mentors" can be a better education for those that care. 5563 and Old-Tank (credible mentor) are perfect examples of that happening!

Just some thoughts . . .

NTX5467

Link to post
Share on other sites

I just got back from Saturday morning coffee with two cynical, experienced, and highly critical (adding me makes three) car guys. Last week I sent them the Buick retrieval vid and the Command Car inspection vid. They got a full thumbs up and we are planning the share more of the series.

The only negative comment was the guy who looked at the Command Car and said "it's got a generator. It must be a 6 volt."; pretty minor.

With all the reality shows of TV, one might be surprised that we sat in the restaurant praising the reality. It was the lack of staged events we see in other productions that won favor. No arm waving and jumping up and down, crying out "I found the seat!!!". No standard formula of casting. The overbearing Boss figure who kicks things around, the stupid abused underling, the urgent deadline that must be met, not even the mention of dollar figures or the waving of a cash roll. We know the standard formula- A squared + B squared = Stupid. This was a very refreshing change. It was just car guys doing car guy stuff.

I guess TV shows are a lot like restaurants. If you don't know what real food tastes like the food in the mall food might taste good.

Bernie

Link to post
Share on other sites

It seems to me that the opinions on resto versus modified have a lot to do with the eye of the opiner and it seems to me that that depends very much on age. In 1984 when I was 38 I bought a 57 Olds 98 2dr ht. with a bashed in trunk. I proceeded with the help of my able machinist to build a full house J2 mill backed by a toploader Ford. At 50 my dear brother gave me a t-56 6 speed. Just before Jim the machinist retired a dozen years ago we built a disk brake system using 12 inch Cad rotors. This car has been all over the US and Canada.

Last year my same dear brother gave my wife the 53 Roadmaster. It appears to have 62,500 miles and an amateur restration around 1989. I just put the refreshed Dynaflow back in and I reused all of the tower clamps. I'm thinking about driving to the BCA Nats some 200 miles away in 2015. The difference? I'm 67 now...

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...