95Cardinal

1958 Caballero

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This will be an amazing car to behold when done - it is already! Is that copper a factory color? If so, even better! I look at your car and then at all the SUVs out here in San Diego, and can only say "wow - we really took a step back when it comes to road presence!" Keep up the good work and all the postings!

P.S. I spent 19 years in MI, many of them in the OEM auto industry (not GM) and I can easily see today's designers posting a pix of this car, as they usually do with other older cars, for inspiration throughout the Design studios. Also, keep in touch with Bugle Editor Pete Phillips, who I'm sure you know also is restoring a '58 Cab.

Thanks for the comments, Jan!

Yes, it is the original paint on the car.

It was called Garnet Red, but it really looks like a copper or cinnamon color.

I haven't decided whether I want to retain the original color. If I do, I will probably add the second color and make it look like this one:

post-47436-143142879214_thumb.jpg

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Awesome Cabellero!

BUT,

Caution on using "Sharpies" for notations on the painted surfaces…..

I , too did this on my 49 Jeepster (yes, it's got a BUICK engine/trans!) about 14 years ago…. In my case I had

primed the whole body with PPG DP 50; first coat after metal work.

Then I cleverly went around to went around the body and made various notes to myself on high spots/low spots

using a "Sharpie". Then proceeded to continue to level those spots with further sanding and skim coat.

In some spots…where the finish body work did not include some spots where I used the "Sharpie" IT BLED THROUGH ALL LAYERS OF

primer/sealer/base coat/pearl coat/ clear!!!!!!! This was all top drawer PPG material. Trust me, you must ensure ALL

remnants of the ink is sanded/blasted into oblivion before any body work or paint work. I don't know what's in that stuff,

but NOTHING I tried would prevent bleed through.

I noticed this (in horror) only after I committed to the final color coats and watched it bleed through; much like playing with

invisible ink as a kid! Tried heavier coats of sealer & base… only to see the ink materialize as it dried…..Luckily

the two or three spots of ink remnants were in somewhat inconspicuous areas and will only be seen if I point it out to you.

I use post it notes now!!!!

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Awesome Cabellero!

BUT,

Caution on using "Sharpies" for notations on the painted surfaces…..

I , too did this on my 49 Jeepster (yes, it's got a BUICK engine/trans!) about 14 years ago…. In my case I had

primed the whole body with PPG DP 50; first coat after metal work.

Then I cleverly went around to went around the body and made various notes to myself on high spots/low spots

using a "Sharpie". Then proceeded to continue to level those spots with further sanding and skim coat.

In some spots…where the finish body work did not include some spots where I used the "Sharpie" IT BLED THROUGH ALL LAYERS OF

primer/sealer/base coat/pearl coat/ clear!!!!!!! This was all top drawer PPG material. Trust me, you must ensure ALL

remnants of the ink is sanded/blasted into oblivion before any body work or paint work. I don't know what's in that stuff,

but NOTHING I tried would prevent bleed through.

I noticed this (in horror) only after I committed to the final color coats and watched it bleed through; much like playing with

invisible ink as a kid! Tried heavier coats of sealer & base… only to see the ink materialize as it dried…..Luckily

the two or three spots of ink remnants were in somewhat inconspicuous areas and will only be seen if I point it out to you.

I use post it notes now!!!!

<script type="text/javascript" src="safari-extension://com.ebay.safari.myebaymanager-QYHMMGCMJR/4c89dc4e/background/helpers/prefilterHelper.js"></script>

This is great info; thanks!

I plan to have the entire body media blasted, but it's good to know that these inks will bleed through!

Joe

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Awesome Cabellero!

BUT,

Caution on using "Sharpies" for notations on the painted surfaces…..

I , too did this on my 49 Jeepster (yes, it's got a BUICK engine/trans!) about 14 years ago…. In my case I had

primed the whole body with PPG DP 50; first coat after metal work.

Then I cleverly went around to went around the body and made various notes to myself on high spots/low spots

using a "Sharpie". Then proceeded to continue to level those spots with further sanding and skim coat.

In some spots…where the finish body work did not include some spots where I used the "Sharpie" IT BLED THROUGH ALL LAYERS OF

primer/sealer/base coat/pearl coat/ clear!!!!!!! This was all top drawer PPG material. Trust me, you must ensure ALL

remnants of the ink is sanded/blasted into oblivion before any body work or paint work. I don't know what's in that stuff,

but NOTHING I tried would prevent bleed through.

I noticed this (in horror) only after I committed to the final color coats and watched it bleed through; much like playing with

invisible ink as a kid! Tried heavier coats of sealer & base… only to see the ink materialize as it dried…..Luckily

the two or three spots of ink remnants were in somewhat inconspicuous areas and will only be seen if I point it out to you.

I use post it notes now!!!!

<script type="text/javascript" src="safari-extension://com.ebay.safari.myebaymanager-QYHMMGCMJR/4c89dc4e/background/helpers/prefilterHelper.js"></script>

This is why I always use a pencil to mark my highs and lows. NEVER use a Sharpie. I learned that years ago on dry wall.

Edited by Skyking (see edit history)

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I get all of this, but clearly the pics were taken before disassembly and sanding.

When you have a Baggie with shims in it, that you took off and swore you would remember what "two up, 1/8" then washer" means two years from now.

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I get all of this, but clearly the pics were taken before disassembly and sanding.

When you have a Baggie with shims in it, that you took off and swore you would remember what "two up, 1/8" then washer" means two years from now.

Mike, in this case it really doesn't matter using the sharpie on the old paint. The car will be blasted removing all to the metal. It's from there on I wouldn't use it in any other way..............

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Joe,

Probably the best method might be to now photograph all points that are marked in sharpie before media blast, then disassemble with photos, and notes in baggie, then redo after paint with grease pencil - easily wiped off body (it's what they do in the OEM's on bodies in the production process still). That way you will have the millions of photos tied with the parts and then you can reproduce it on the body during assembly.

Just some thought from a guy in the auto industry and who has done this before...

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Joe,

Probably the best method might be to now photograph all points that are marked in sharpie before media blast, then disassemble with photos, and notes in baggie, then redo after paint with grease pencil - easily wiped off body (it's what they do in the OEM's on bodies in the production process still). That way you will have the millions of photos tied with the parts and then you can reproduce it on the body during assembly.

Just some thought from a guy in the auto industry and who has done this before...

Jim,

Yes; that's what I've been doing.

I've got photos of every mounting point showing how many shims/washers were at each attachment point. All my notes are visible in the photos.

I wrote the notes on the panels now so I can take photos and make the adjustments before I remove the doors.

I'll drill small pilot holes (like I did on the fender and hood attachments) to get me close to final alignment for re-assembly after paint.

Once it's blasted clean, I don't write on the parts themselves. If I still need any notes on the parts from that point on, I will use masking tape or post-it notes.

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December 13, 2014 update

I was able to remove all the trim and the headlight buckets from the fenders. I can't believe how solid the metal is on this car!

On both fenders, all the mounting tabs and holes for trim clips are in great condition, except where someone apparently ripped the "bull's-eye" emblem out of the fender!

15827959670_d607388ce8_b.jpg

So far, the only rust I've found is in the doglegs at the back of the rear doors. There are also a few pinholes in the passenger side rear floor pan where there was a pile of leaves and junk laying on the floor, but otherwise it all looks excellent.

The die-cast headlight housings and the eyebrows are almost perfect!

15829474877_295b714cd1_b.jpg

The headlight buckets are a little rough on the back side, but they look like new inside!

Once all the front end sheet metal was out of the way, I borrowed a friend's engine lift to pull the nailhead.

After a couple of false starts due to some air in the hydraulic cylinder, I was able to begin lifting. This engine is no lightweight!

15989394216_51ebdde2e6_b.jpg

15392905944_0db60979b8_b.jpg

I thought I had disconnected everything, but I missed one of the transmission shift linkage brackets. Luckily, I caught it before destroying the pivot bracket.

15827764798_8e53c17ab1_b.jpg

Engine out and on its way to the open garage bay.

15392904654_74ec069d40_b.jpg

Had a VERY scary moment when the engine swayed "downhill" and the whole shebang started to go over. I was able to control it and keep everything from tipping over, but now my back is a little angry at me.

Sorry; no pics. I had my hands full at the time!

I have an old welding cart that worked perfectly as a "nest" for the engine. I left the lift connected so nothing can tip or roll while I proceeded with a preliminary inspection.

I pulled the rocker covers and didn't see any obvious valve train problems. There is a little condensation visible, but that's the only issue I see.

15829127259_e5cd757d32_b.jpg

The crossover manifold came off easily, but the water pump is being obstinate. One bolt won't budge; I'm going to let the PB Blaster soak for a day or two before I try again.

15829123369_445604ac71_b.jpg

When the engine was still in the car, I had tried to roll it over by hand and I couldn't get it to move more than a few degrees. I had not removed the spark plugs yet, so I was hoping it would move freely after I got the plugs out...

After pulling the plugs, I poured a few ounces of MMM in each cylinder.

After a few hours, I tried to turn the crank but it still won't move more than about 10 degrees. I was hoping it would be free, but no such luck.

I'll try moving it again in a couple of days, but I think I will have a pro go through the engine. The only V8 I've ever built was a stock 283 for my 1957 Corvette, back in about 1981. Not sure I want to tackle this one...

Back to the chassis; I removed the Y pipe; it is very heavy and it looks like it might be an original Buick part.

I hope to find the stamped part number after it's been cleaned up.

16014463812_eff3e548da_b.jpg

Now that the engine is out, I'll let it sit for a few days before trying to move the crank again.

In the meantime, I will start working on the tailgate hinges; they are stuck solid.

Probably won't have much more to report until January.

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When I pulled the engine out of my Limited, I forgot the throttle linkage...SNAP!

Great progress...thanks for sharing!

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Update 2015.01.05

I have made some progress recently...

The engine would not turn over by hand, so I pulled the intake manifold and the valley pan; everything looked very good.

No stuck valves, all lifters looked clean and appeared to move smoothly, but I could only get about 90 degrees of rotation on the crank before it came to a hard stop.

15829415137_da7609ae06_b.jpg

15829127259_e5cd757d32_b.jpg

I used a borescope to look into the cylinders, but I could not get a good look at the combustion chambers and cylinder walls.

I figured I had to tear it down further anyway, so I pulled the heads.

15993995797_a7da95189d_b.jpg

The obstruction was rust in the #8 cylinder.

15992361138_acc27e635c_b.jpg

A few minutes with some Marvel Mystery Oil and a soft wire brush and the engine was spinning smoothly.

16179035572_fdbe408268_b.jpg

Next step is to get it to a professional for cleaning/magnaflux and re-fresh.

It doesn't look like it needs to be bored, but I won't know for certain until it's cleaned and measured.

Picked up a parts car just before Christmas. It has a lot of stuff that I need, and some stuff I wanted.

It had a split folding rear seat; the only one I've ever seen; pretty cool!

16019142280_85b9c41fd9_b.jpg

Started cleaning and prepping the grille inserts. I haven't decided if I can live with the original chrome or if they need to be re-plated.

There is a little bit of pitting and some "desert sand-blast" spots on the faces of the grille diamonds.

16019293910_92793562e1_b.jpg

16204765221_5a65744db9_b.jpg

Hubcaps off the parts car look very nice when they're cleaned up. Still need some TLC/polishing, but I'm going to be able to use them.

16177915971_f9dc0e0365_b.jpg

16177915401_bc3a5580e1_b.jpg

I took the opportunity to try out my recently-acquired ultrasonic cleaner.

Here's the carb as it was being disassembled:

15948037372_6cebf58a45_b.jpg

16199011365_88b573c737_b.jpg

Into the tank:

16198192772_4d21547ae3_b.jpg

After 25 minutes in hot water & Pine Sol:

16019150510_45b33ccf50_b.jpg

15584098354_28c49eeb9b_b.jpg

On the third batch of parts, the cleaning solution was less effective, but I'm very happy with how it worked.

The internal passages are clear and I only need to do a little "touch-up" where the varnish was thickest in the bottom of the float bowls.

More soon!

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Most excellent progress!

For your grille……

What I do (about once every 2 or 3 years).

Since mine is still attached,

I use one of those little swiveling, rolling stools & a blunt cone shaped felt pad that will chuck up in your variable

speed 3/8 drill. A dab of metal polish on the end and let the drill do the work.

A favorite beverage is recommended since you'll be doing 160 of them!

I wipe off the residue and follow up with a bit of wax…. Last time it took 3 hours!

Good thing it wasn't cocktail hour…….

mike

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Most excellent progress!

For your grille……

What I do (about once every 2 or 3 years).

Since mine is still attached,

I use one of those little swiveling, rolling stools & a blunt cone shaped felt pad that will chuck up in your variable

speed 3/8 drill. A dab of metal polish on the end and let the drill do the work.

A favorite beverage is recommended since you'll be doing 160 of them!

I wipe off the residue and follow up with a bit of wax…. Last time it took 3 hours!

Good thing it wasn't cocktail hour…….

mike

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I've only gone over about half of the "bullets" so far and it's taking forever.

I like your idea...especially the beverage and the stool!

thanks!

Edited by 95Cardinal (see edit history)

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I took the opportunity to try out my recently-acquired ultrasonic cleaner.

Very interested in where you obtained this cleaner. Looks like it did a good job.

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Very interested in where you obtained this cleaner. Looks like it did a good job.

Doug,

I found it used on eBay.

They are typically listed under medical equipment or cleaning equipment.

I found a very basic Branson unit that doesn't have a timer or heater.

I wanted a unit that was big enough to accommodate a carburetor base and float bowl. This one has a 10 liter tank.

You can find new ones this size for under $400 with heaters and timers, but I found many complaints about poor cleaning results and early failures, so I went with a used "industrial" unit.

Joe

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Joe,

I'm greatly enjoying following your restoration. Your "grill diamonds" are very similar to the ones on my 59 and I also contemplated having them re-plated during my restoration. I changed my mind after seeing a freshly plated grill done by a top notch shop. The four sharp lines (creases) in each tiny diamond are a very fine detail, and when the new plating material is added the extra build up that occurs pretty much obliterates that detail. Your grill diamonds look pretty darn good and I agree with Mike that it might be worthwhile (and a lot less expensive) to try polishing them. My guess is that they will turn out looking much better than a re-plated grill that might be shinier but won't look nearly as nice. I was fortunate to locate the left half of an NOS grill, the challenge was trying to get the used right half to match. After a lot of polishing the used half might not have quite the shine of the NOS side, but nobody would ever spot it unless it was pointed out.

Can't wait for your next update!

Edited by Electra 59 (see edit history)

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Thanks for that advice, Tom.

I have done some more cleaning and polishing of the "diamonds' and I agree; I'm going to make it look as good as possible without re-plating.

JoeT

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I have just been reading through the thread, and have enjoyed it very much! The car looks very good, and will be awesome when done. I'm looking forward to following your progress!

Keith

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My, how time flies....

Wow...summer's essentially over and it's almost embarassing to admit how little I have accomplished on the Caballero.

Inspection of the engine revealed corrosion that was too deep to clean up with a hone, so it needed to be bored .030".
The heads checked out great.
21109545881_f6f41110e3_b.jpg

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Engine assembly will begin soon (September).

Re-built starter and generator
19675840874_990e8248c4_b.jpg


All engine brackets and tin parts (air cleaner, rocker covers, heat shields, etc) were bead blasted and prepped for paint.
The air cleaner base will require some additional work to repair some rust pitting and pinholes.

The oil pan drain plug area also required some repair due to a significant dent just ahead of the drain plug.

I removed the fuel tank and got a very unpleasant surprise.
20480656723_753c468dfe_b.jpg

Apparently, someone tried to tow the car when the transmission had been removed. That let the rear axle basically stay at rest until the front of the gas tank crashed into the differential case. At that point, the gas tank became the push bar for the body and the forces were sufficient to put a nice imprint of the differential into the front of the gas tank.21109413581_f4dec86e76_b.jpg

I haven't cut it open yet, but the plan is to cut two large windows in the top of the tank so the damage can be worked out from above/inside the tank.

The dash has been removed and the steering column comes next.
20913811948_187edb1d94_b.jpg

Speedometer needs to be rebuilt. Cool piece; it shows a travelling red band in the slot to indicate vehicle speed.

I bumped out the dents and creases in the front fenders and they are at the media blaster to be blasted and primed.

Had to drill out all the spot welds an remove the front fender reinforcements due to corrosion below the headlights. I've seen much worse, but I was hoping this would not be this bad.
19647877176_06483053e0_b.jpg

19053169533_e474d09d27_b.jpg

All the front end sheet metal (core support, fender liners, fan shroud, etc) was disassembled, media blasted and powder coated satin black.
Looks great!
https://farm1.staticflickr.com/741/20914961219_bf7fae81c8_b.jpg

https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5777/21109560051_209ede10aa_b.jpg

https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5759/20913647830_0017b8dfcb_b.jpg

The radio was refurbished by Kim Kusluski in Grand Blanc, MI. Works great!

More soon.
 

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Guest my3buicks

Such a diamond in the rough you have - it will be a gem when you are done -  fantastic desirable cars

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Looking forward to your continual progress, not matter what the pace is. Such a stunning design, but back in those days station wagons were so expendable. Maybe like a lot of today's SUVs or CUVs.  

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Looks like excellent progress.  The workmanship looks to be very thorough.  Nicely done!

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Joe,

 

 

The engine looks great.

 

Your Caballero will be a beauty!

 

Thanks for sharing.

 

 

Jim Vesely

 

BCA # 39477

 

ROA # 7437

 

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Joe,

Glad to see your progress. 

Man, you really went at that dash! Was it because of that red western dust that had gotten in?

 

Keep up the good work. :)

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Joe,

Glad to see your progress. 

Man, you really went at that dash! Was it because of that red western dust that had gotten in?

 

Keep up the good work. :)

Doug,

I am taking it completely apart before I pull the body off the frame.

This car will be as close to perfect as I can make it!

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