95Cardinal

1958 Caballero

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This stage must be very exciting!  It feels like you are just moments away from finishing it up! 

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22 hours ago, JohnD1956 said:

This stage must be very exciting!  It feels like you are just moments away from finishing it up! 

 

Exciting and more than a littl bit stressful...

It's amazing how many little details are still unfinished!

 

But I believe the light at the end of the tunnel is NOT a train.

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For the past 4 years, I have been looking for one of the correct Century script emblems for the left side of the car.

The right side emblems slanted "forward" and the left emblems slanted "rearward". 

Since my search has not been successful, 57BuickJim volunteered to share his knowledge and skills in moldmaking to help me create an emblem.

He and I used the good part as a sample and built a silicone mold to re-create the emblem.

I was concerned that a plastic emblem might not be strong enough to withstand the forces involved in the installation process, so I made a sheet metal reinforcement plate to add strangth to the plastic part. This is my first attempt at the reinforcement:

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Tin snips, a dremel and a set of X-Acto files got me this far:

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The reinforcement didn't fit well, so I made a second one:

 

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I drilled and tapped six #3-40 holes for insertion of threaded attaching studs to the reinforcement

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Here's Jim, working on the mold

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Out first mold failed because the material was too old and didn't react. Back to the drawing board...

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Jim made a second and ultimately, a third mold to replicate the original emblem

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This was my first attempt to manufacture an emblem with the steel reinforcement

 

 

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Then, lots of patience and grinding required to trim away the excess plastic

 

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We learned that we had made the mold too "deep" and the part was too thick. It would stick out from the surface of the door trim panel about 1/8" further than the rest of the emblems.

Jim made another mold and cast new parts made from plastic, without the metal reinforcement.

 

As of today (February 4, 2019), the plastic emblems are at Vacuum Orna-Metal in Romulus, Michigan to be vacuum metallized.

 

The craziest thing is...I found the emblem for sale on ebay about 3 days ago.

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Now, I'll have 3 to choose from!


 

Edited by 95Cardinal
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Isn't that always the way Joe?

 

Question: 

With all the talk of 3D Printing, would that have been an option?

 

p.s. By the way, Nice Work!

Edited by dei (see edit history)

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7 hours ago, dei said:

Question: 

With all the talk of 3D Printing, would that have been an option?

 

If you can find a way into a University department with a 3D scanner, that would be the most accurate way to go so long as the printer has the right resolution. Otherwise, you would need to remake the emblem in a 3D modelling software and then export it to the printer. 3D printing is also very messy stuff and can be very tedious to clean up. I think in this case, the cast emblem is the way to go.

 

Looks great by the way! You should use the part you cast yourself, the personal touches are what make the car, even if you know its only 99% correct.

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22 hours ago, dei said:

Isn't that always the way Joe?

 

Question: 

With all the talk of 3D Printing, would that have been an option?

 

p.s. By the way, Nice Work!

 

My son-in-law has a 3d printer that could produce this part, but he told me that his printer wouldn't be capable of delivering the smooth surface finish required for the emblem.

We also would have needed a 3D scan, as Beemon indicated.

The commercial 3D scanning & printing costs were much higher than the casting costs, so I went with the casting option.

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Back at the end of December, I had to get the car back to Masterworks for some paint work. Before taking it back there, I wanted to get the rear seat heater connected and finish up a few undercar tasks.

Time to get the car up on my ramps...

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It was not an easy move; the car ran very poorly and the wet tires made it difficult to get up the incline.

 

Got it on the ramps and went to work...

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I had to do a little bit of housekeeping, but in general, everything was looking quite tidy under here.

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The rear seat heater requires 2 connections; one on each side of the vehicle. The coolant lines run from the water pump output to the driver's side of the heater, then the return line goes from the heater's passenger side outlet to the temperature control valve, on the passenger side of the cowl, under the right fender.

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Of course, BOTH connections leaked with the OEM style clamps, so some additional work was needed to stop the drooling.

I'm back to the rear compartment trim. The rear liftgate and tailgate opening takes a windlace seal along the vertical sides of the body opening and the liftgate opening.

There's a short section of rubber seal on each side of the tailgate, between the vertical body to liftgate joint and the lower outboard corners of the liftgate.

The short, vertical pieces are sewn to a pressboard substrate, folded at both ends and retained to the car by the painted steel quarter trim panels.

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Similarly, the upper windlace is sewn to a pressboard substrate and then retained by the garnish moldings.

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This is the original rubber seal that was installed along the upper edge of the tailgate opening, between the tailgate and the outboard corner of the liftgate:

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It was stapled to a tack strip that was screwed to the inner quarter panel. I bonded multiple layers of 1/8" panel board together to make up the tack strip.

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The tack strip was then screwed to the quarter panel, using the 2 small holes nearest the top of the panel.

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Cut the weatherstrip to length and glued & stapled it to the tack strip, then installed the steel trim panel.

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Love the finish detail under the car.  This looks so much more authentic than having everything painted chassis black.  But then I wonder about protection from future exposure to moisture.

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What are your finishes on the bolts and the trans casing (among other parts)?  I recall you stated that you would show the car for a period of time, then tour it.  I assume that some fasteners and other metal parts may have been unfinished at the time of assembly, true?  I suppose that sequence of use would allow your painstaking attention to detail to remain intact for showing.  I won't make OK this summer, but would sure like to see you in OH next year!

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The fasteners were all zinc plated. 

The castings and any bare steel parts were glass beaded, then painted with "cast gray" or "cast aluminum" as appropriate to retain the original appearance while protecting the bare materials.

 

There are already a few parts that need to be cleaned and re-coated due to scratches.

Ultimately, I will probably use matte or semi-gloss clear to protect those finishes if I begin to see any degradation.

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When commenting on the fasteners being plated, We took a bunch of fasteners together and had them "drum plated".  Costs here in the metro area about $100.00 or less to have almost a five gallon bucket plated.

 

Because we are both working on project cars together we at one time had silver zinc, gold zinc, black oxidized and green stuff being plated at the same time.  We did nuts, bolts, screws, washers, clips, brackets, etc...  Just need to sort by color.

 

Saved both of us money by splitting the cost for a larger quantity.  Just less than a five gallon bucket of stuff of each plating color outcome.

 

Great to have a restoration friend to work together on this type of stuff and all of the activities to get it done.

Edited by Larry Schramm (see edit history)
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Did you have to clean/prep the fasteners prior to taking them to the plater?

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50 minutes ago, Smartin said:

Did you have to clean/prep the fasteners prior to taking them to the plater?

 

You did not want a greasy oily batch.  The cleaner the parts the better the outcome.  On some larger pieces that would have some rust, we glass beaded it and they turned out great.

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Time to install that massive rear bumper...

All the edges were taped to protect the painted surfaces and I double-checked the clearance between the mounting brackets to ensure they would fit snugly between the frame rails.


Two friends held the bumper while my wife guided us and I installed the frame attaching bolts.

Didn't take us very long to get to this point:

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The bumper is centered, but it needs to be rotated up at the rear to align better with the end of the quarter panels. 

 

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Final adjustment will be done at Masterworks when the final paint touch-ups are being done.


 

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So I'm just stumbling onto your project today and all I can say is it's awesome!  I saw what the car looked like when you picked it up and it's hard to believe came from the same planet.  Beautiful car, thanks for saving the car and the great job posting the progress...

 

Dave

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2 minutes ago, Str8-8-Dave said:

So I'm just stumbling onto your project today and all I can say is it's awesome!  I saw what the car looked like when you picked it up and it's hard to believe came from the same planet.  Beautiful car, thanks for saving the car and the great job posting the progress...

 

Dave

 

Thanks, Dave!

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There are SO many parts on this car that are "58 only" or "57 & 58 only".

 

These clips are the "D" pillar exterior reveal molding retainers.

On the left is the OEM part; on the right, the piece I am making to replace one broken retainer.

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I started with a piece of spring steel and laid out the centers of the bends, then formed the part to shape using the OEM piece as my pattern.

Finished part - best of all, it works!

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January 5: Down off the ramps and back to the paint shop for touch-ups and rear bumper final alignment!

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Unfortunately, the car was very difficult to start and it ran very poorly. More work to do...

 

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Notice that the right rear window is open. When I tried to roll the window up, the glass was moving on an arc into the car, inboard of the roof rail weatherstrip.

Another task to add to the list...

 

Looking quite spiffy!

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With the car in for some touch-ups, I shifted my focus to the rear compartment carpeting.

It took some experimentation, but I was finally able to make acceptable, consistent stitches with the vintage Singer over-edger/serger machine.

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I had created full-size paper patterns and used them to cut the carpeting to size.

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Then ran the carpet pieces through the serging machine to finish the edges.

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I think they turned out great.

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A little bit of video...

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I finished all the ends by tying off the stitches and tucking the "tails" under the adjacent stitches.

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Then, I used a hook needle to draw the threads under the adjacent stitches.

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And I added a small piece of tape to hold every thread end down until the carpet is adhered onto the steel panel.

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Simply stunning as it nears completion!  What a remarkable Buick treasure this is!

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Assembling the front door trim starts with attaching the armrest base to the main panel, followed by a layer of padding and then the trim cover.

 

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The second layer consists of a sub-foundation that carries all the upper trim pieces.

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Lots of measuring and double-checking before bonding and sewing the individual panels together.

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The two-tone split lines must line up with the narrow, stainless steel trim moldings that surround the center section of the panel.46850000181_d3abefbaf6_b.jpg

 

 

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I hand-stitched the upper and lower panels together and bonded the joints with contact adhesive.

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The completed upper panel is retained to the main board with several bend-tabs above the armrest, and adhesive & staples around the perimeter.

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Below the armrest, the beige and tan panels are sewn to the main panel with a seam reinforcement to provide a clean, straight edge at the color change lines.

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After sewing both the beige and tan pieces, I test-fit the moldings again:

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The beige material is "peeking" out above the lower molding, which meant that I had to re-do the two lower sections.

 

 

Now that's better!

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Moldings installed and perimeters edgefolded. Waiting for the arrival of the Century script emblems.

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To install the emblems, I marked the positions of the studs on the front side of the panel and used a small pick to create the holes for the attaching pins.

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From the back side, I used a 1/8" drill bit to enlarge the holes in the main panel, while leaving the small holes in the vinyl cover material.

Here, I am installing the retaining clips. I used a small socket, sized to drive the perimeter of the clip onto the studs.

I used a small mallet to drive the clips and supported the emblems from the front of the panel with a cloth-wrapped piece of wood.

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Complete and ready for installation! I will cut the holes for the door and window crank handles when I install the panels to the doors.

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This Power Steering emblem is the center of the horn ring.
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It's got a few scuffs and scratches and one of the attaching studs broke when I tried to install it to the horn ring.

 

I repaired the stud with a Loctite "super-glue" type of adhesive. I also sanded off a bit of the flat side to allow the emblem to fit better in the cavity on the ring.

Then, I re-painted the back side of the emblem with a semi-flat black that matched the original paint.

A very gentle test-fitting of the emblem to the horn ring indicated that the build-up of copper, nickel and chrome (mostly copper) on the horn ring had altered the dimensions of the emblem attachment points.

The holes on the freshly plated horn ring were slightly too small to accept the attachment pins.

I taped off the chrome and enlarged the holes with jeweler's files. I removed small amounts of material (copper) until the pins dropped easily through the holes.

 

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Here's the polished emblem, attached with small dabs of clear silicone:

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The painted steering wheel looks great!

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And the horn ring makes it look even better!

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I masked off the surrounding areas before spraying contact adhesive for the rear compartment carpeting.46970386362_8d96ba54c9_b.jpg

 

 

Applied a coat of adhesive to the back of the carpet:

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Repeat 10 times, including rolling the carpet down to ensure a good bond.

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I applied the adhesive to one section at a time on the long pieces, then rolled the carpet into place.47043224351_300bfacc87_b.jpg

 

With all the pieces bonded in location, I have to add the hold-down screws in each corner of every panel.

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In every corner, I used a small pick to find the original hole location and installed the screw in the original position.

 

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One more step on the road to completion!

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Installing the front door trim panels began with the 6 mil polyethylene water barrier. 
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I was surprised to see that the original retainers each had a foam seal incorporated into the clip design. I have seen the simpler clips (on the right) on previous projects, but the integrated seal was a new feature to me.

I inserted all the retainer clips into the trim panel and postioned the panel on the door inner, without fully engaging the clips.

Then I marked the positions of the window and door handle shafts and cut small diameter holes at the shaft positions.
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A couple of additional test fits and eventually, I increased the diameter of the handle holes to accept the handle washers.
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After installing the panel with the retainer clips, the handles, upper trim panel and lock knob finish the installation.
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Oops...snapped this pic before installing the door handle.
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