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Midtown gets a straight 8


buick5563
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After spending three weeks earlier this year being a mechanic on the Great Race, I was very intrigued by the straight eight. It is an incredibly beautiful engine (which I know very little about). Being around all of the old school racer style cars, I reached out to a friend who had a roadster powered by a straight eight. He wanted AC added to his 55 three speed Special, along with making that car run and drive better. He is 6'3" (at least) and didn't fit in the hot rod, so I also modified his Special's seats to move back two inches for comfort. I had it in my shop for a couple of months and I decided to work off part of his asking price. It is titled as a 48 Buick.

Here is a teaser pic.

I am going to clean it up, install a new battery, then tweak it a bit.

More details to come...

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Yep, it is street legal!!!

There is a baffle in the end of the exhaust, but I can't imagine what that actually does. It is louder than all get out.

It had been sitting for a while, so I just got back with a new battery and some fresh gas. Gonna fire it up, but I need to call Hagerty before going too far ;)

I already have some plans for some more alterations, but first I need to take the Woodster to school in it a few times.

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After spending three weeks earlier this year being a mechanic on the Great Race, I was very intrigued by the straight eight.

Mike: We could tell by the S**t Eatin' Grin on your face when you took our car around the parking lot that it was only going to be a matter of time! Another Great Race Buick Speedster?

Pat n' Pat

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Nice. Congrats on your newest acquisition. That thing looks like a ton of fun! (literally, those straight eights are heavy:P). I bet that sounds awesome. I always loved the sound of mine when I first got it. The exhaust pipe was rusted completely in two right down past the frame so it was a bit loud.:D Nothing like the low grumble of a Buick Straight Eight! They are fun to work on too. Now I just have one question. Will you be giving rides in that "48 Buick" at the next National meet????? Man, that would be better than a roller coaster!

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This would be a cool car for Corky to do his big entrance in, but there is less space behind the driver for tools and water than the Pats have.

BTW DJ, the steering wheel is actually a race car style quick release.

The car has a build sheet with it. I will post some more tech info later. I can tell you that it is a Model A front suspension, has a 48 three speed transmission, 64 Ranchero rear end, Buick speedo and gauges. The body is fiberglass. It was judged in Modified Class in Ames. Not sure how it did.

Robert, I may give rides in Springfield , but Portland is too far to drive it. I'll probably bring the wagon up there.

Edited by buick5563
Wrong trans info (see edit history)
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This would be a cool car for Corky to do his big entrance in, but there is less space behind the driver for tools and water than the Pats have.

BTW DJ, the steering wheel is actually a race car style quick release.

The car has a build sheet with it. I will post some more tech info later. I can tell you that it is a Model A front suspension, has a 48 three speed transmission, 64 Ranchero rear end, Buick speedo and gauges. The body is fiberglass. It was judged in Modified Class in Ames. Not sure how it did.

Robert, I may give rides in Springfield , but Portland is too far to drive it. I'll probably bring the wagon up there.

Now I know why it looked familiar.

Awesome toy Mike, I wanna ride in it.

Put a hitch on the wagon...

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  • 4 weeks later...

Seat yes. Not a whole lot of legroom, though. The reason I was able to get it is because the previous owner was at least 6'3" and he stuck out above the windshield.

I am seriously considering Paul's suggestion on trailering it behind the wagon to Portland.......

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Oh the drama of the old car...

This car had sat for several years, and for some reason I didn't think "bodies at rest" applied to me. After I filled up the tank this morning and shut off the car, I had a boil over spray all over the place. It appeared to be oily so I called First Born, Bill Stoneberg and Old Tank hoping that one of them would tell me I didn't have to change a head gasket. None of them obliged. I started by doing a compression test. I don't know what the numbers are supposed to be but the spark plugs seemed decent and they were all around 100-110. That seemed close enough to regain hope that it wasn't the head gasket.

You have to remove the grille shell to truly check the coolant so that was the next step. I drained the radiator and got a bunch of crud out. Flushed the block and the radiator, changed the thermostat and added a new radiator cap. Voila! No leaks and the temp stayed down. Ran great with new gas BTW.

I was going to test drive and revel in my luck when I looked down at the frame below the master cylinder. There was fluid leaking out from behind the boot. Crap. Unfortunately, I had to do a bunch of research to find the master. There are a lot of 48 Buick parts on this car but a hot rod is cobbled together. Found one and will order it ASAP.

This car is a ball, though. I guess I just need to remember that all cars go to pot when not driven. Even mine.

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Mike:

You MUST bring it out to Portland!!!! I understand there is going to be some great "Pre-War" functions!

Patty Sue wants to race you ;) Unfortunately we lost first gear on the cluster.....She was giving "high performance" rides on the Historic Columbia River Hwy. We just threw a magnet on the bottom of the gear box and just kept on giving rides! It still pulls great in second!

BTW, we don't have to worry about losing brake fluid with mechanical brakes :)

Pat n' Pat

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