95Cardinal

1958 Caballero

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In a previous post, I showed that the driver's side front shock tower had been welded to the frame.
Time to cut it off and repair the area properly.
After removal:
22374250354_ae12d58e46_b.jpg
LOTS of weld!

Cleaned up the frame and made up a small patch panel:
22983572162_a05ddcca0d_b.jpg

Welded a nut and a reinforcement to the patch, then welded that subassembly into the frame rail.
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After cleaning up the welds:
22389357283_a77e34a52d_b.jpg

Looked over the entire frame for other issues.
Straightened out a few dents and dings in the cross-members. Somebody must have taken this thing off-roading in the desert; lots of rock damage!
Found that one of the mounting holes for the steering gear had some cracks around the bolt head. For some reason, the bottom bolt had no washer under the bolt head. Looks like the bolt head cracked the outer frame wall when it was torqued down.
I ground the cracks open and welded them up:
22594099838_ed5f25c1d6_b.jpg
After clean-up:
22390007394_ac86f7363e_b.jpg
This bolt will get a correctly sized washer when the steering gear gets installed!

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Great progress shots Joe!

I also like your ramp / hoist set up.

Would guess you have the body at another building?

 

Anxiously awaiting more reports. :D

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Great progress shots Joe!

I also like your ramp / hoist set up.

Would guess you have the body at another building?

 

Anxiously awaiting more reports. :D

 

Yes, the body is on a cart - in storage until I get the chassis done.

Then, I'll put the completed chassis in storage and bring the body home to do the metal work.

 

Current plan is to finish the underside of the body before I mount it on the frame, then get the exterior painted.

At this pace, I figure I have at least 2 more years of work to do...

Edited by 95Cardinal (see edit history)

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At least you are moving forward Joe.

I had planned to be on the road by now doing just a simple brake job and it is almost Xmas......

With the extensive work you are doing time will pass quickly but you are on the right track!

Following along with much interest.

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I'm very pleased to have resumed reading this excellent thread and catch up on your awesome progress. Apparently the preservation vs. restoration debate didn't last long for you. Sorry, BuickJim, here's another non-convert to the "keep 'em running while you fix 'em" philosophy. Nice work, great photos, with a very literate play-by-play description.

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Rob McDonald wrote: "Apparently the preservation vs. restoration debate didn't last long for you."

 

No, it didn't take long at all to make that choice. I don't think it was a good candidate for a driving rebuild; just too many major repairs required.

If the engine had not been seized, it would have been a tougher decision.

 

When I realized how much I had to do to get it operational, I realized I wasn't going to be happy doing all that work and still having it look like an abandoned desert vehicle.

 

We'll see if I feel that same way in a couple of years.  :lol: 

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December 30, 2015 update

We have been traveling again, so there hasn't been a lot of progress lately.

The frame is at the sandblaster's shop. It is being cleaned and then powder-coated satin black (excellent match to GM chassis black).
I got the ball joints and control arm bushings apart before we left on our trip, so the upper and lower control arms are also being powder-coated with the frame:
23122592335_1a842bf220_b.jpg

Here is the rear axle assembly, as removed from the frame:
24043799426_92158766c5_b.jpg

Disassembled the rear brakes and radius rods:
24069898305_671d578407_b.jpg

Removed the front section of the torque tube and the front prop shaft.
There is a U-joint behind this bearing. This torque tube design certainly was beefy!
23443097663_95ef267cfa_b.jpg

Hard to tell from the photo, but this front section of the prop shaft is almost 4 feet long:
23443099103_1b1f249690_b.jpg

The rear axle and torque tube housing assembly is being media-blasted, then I'll take the rear end to a local shop for assessment and rebuild.

"Sparky" (the guy at the radiator shop) bumped the dents out of the radiator tanks.
The radiator looks GREAT!
Here it is, with it's new core and freshly-painted tanks:
23702084499_9558d8bab0_b.jpg


Until the frame and suspension parts are done, I will be cleaning and re-finishing chassis and suspension parts.

Frame and suspension assembly should begin soon.

Happy New Year!

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Update: January 27, 2016

Frame is back from the powder coater; looks SWELL! (There's a word you haven't heard lately!)

23918147223_b865daabf6_b.jpg

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It's so pretty, it seems a shame to put a body on it!


Used the 88 Electra Estate to tow the trailer; all in the (Buick) family!

24435941322_69df196beb_b.jpg


It's a great feeling to start putting things back together. Here are the front brake lines and junction blocks. The pretty, new lines are from Inline Tube; they fit quite well with only a little "massaging" required. I didn't even need the tubing bender. Junction blocks are the original parts.

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Been experimenting with white vinegar for rust removal. Certainly worked well on these parts!

24241174199_844ed71fe9_b.jpg

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Rear axle is at "The Ring and Pinion Shop" in Mt. Clemens, MI for assessment and refurbishing. Should have it back in a couple of weeks, as long as there are no major surprises or big delays in part availablility.

Power steering pump is going back together with new seals, o-rings and gaskets.
Shaft and bushings checked out okay.

24289577549_537f235fce_b.jpg


Details, details, details....

24435938562_0e9e5bdc24_b.jpg

23831231339_c6f77ccaeb_b.jpg

This is when all those labels and zip-loc bags earn their keep!
 

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You HAVE been busy!

I have just started using the vinegar soaking too. How long did your parts take?

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Those zinc-plated parts were in the vinegar for only about 4 hours. They had light surface rust, no pitting or scaling.

I've got some more corroded parts in the vinegar now; they've been in there for 2 days.

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Details on the vinegar soak process please...  Looks like a good way to go.

 

Just soak the parts in white vinegar. Warm vinegar will work more aggressively than room temperature.

I use a scotchbrite pad or brass brush to scrub off the residue. If the part isn't clean enough, give it more time in the solution.

If you add salt to the vinegar (1 cup of salt per gallon of vinegar), it will accelerate the process.

When the parts are clean, keep them in the container and add 1 cup of baking soda per gallon to neutralize the vinegar and stop the process. Add the soda slowly; it does the volcano trick!

 

Great write-up here:

http://www.finewoodworking.com/item/113083/salt-and-vinegar-natures-rust-remover

 

I will be adding more photos over the next few days as I get more parts out of the tank.

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Thanks Joe for the vinegar link.

Have tried it on my backing plate and quite please.

I think it will be great for many small parts which I will be cleaning up and painting down the road.

Not getting in as deep as you yet but..... it's time for some attention to my cars.

post-80315-0-43657100-1454626189_thumb.j

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That backing plate looks great, Doug!

 

Update/tip on the vinegar process:

Instead of adding the baking soda to the vinegar to neutralize the entire batch, I have been dropping each individual part into a soda/water solution when it's vinegar bath is complete.

Much easier and less wasteful of vinegar, plus I don't have to manage the volcano... :)

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I have used washing soda and electricity to clean off the rust, works great

 

Like all water based cleaners though, you need to get the oily stuff off first

 

I have a sand blaster and putting the parts in the bath first saves plenty of time at the blaster, but a rub with a scouring pad also works well after the bath

 

Just need a tub (I used a 50 ltr one) some leanths of rebar or any old scrap steel and a battery or a battery charger or both and some automotive wire

 

Stick the rebar in the tub (I used 4 pieces, one at each corner) and wire them together and connect to the positive (Important), then place the part in the solution and connect to negative, then leave it for a while, you know its working when you see bubble coming off the part

 

1 tip though, dont let the copper wire get into the solution, it makes a greeny black unpleasant mess :)

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I have used washing soda and electricity to clean off the rust, works great

 

Like all water based cleaners though, you need to get the oily stuff off first

 

I have a sand blaster and putting the parts in the bath first saves plenty of time at the blaster, but a rub with a scouring pad also works well after the bath

 

Just need a tub (I used a 50 ltr one) some leanths of rebar or any old scrap steel and a battery or a battery charger or both and some automotive wire

 

Stick the rebar in the tub (I used 4 pieces, one at each corner) and wire them together and connect to the positive (Important), then place the part in the solution and connect to negative, then leave it for a while, you know its working when you see bubble coming off the part

 

1 tip though, dont let the copper wire get into the solution, it makes a greeny black unpleasant mess :)

I really like the electrolytic process too!

But 2 weeks ago, I almost started the garage on fire.

The part that was suspended in the tank slipped and touched the sacrificial anode, creating a dead short.

I didn't have a fuse in the circuit.

Luckily, the copper wire melted before anything caught on fire.

 

The melted wire was so hot that it melted a slot in the side of the battery case, creating a battery acid leak.

 

If you use an electrolysis tank, please use current limiting protection (fuse).

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Yep

Being an auto electrician, I naturally assume some sort of circuit protection would be used :)

 

I was using a 10A battery charger (old cheap one) that has a built in auto reset circuit breaker, but if you use or add a battery to the mix, I would get another 15a auto reset circuit breaker to put in the supply line

 

The current draw of the de rusting does vary a bit, thats why the CB is better than a fuse as it will also (kind of) regulate the current used as well

 

This is all simple stuff though, actually similar to electroplating, but not as controlled

 

Mick

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Pulled the Dynaflow transmission out of the parts car for rebuild.
It was well protected by years of oil leaks...
24695129676_b23bf1f08e_b.jpg

Pressure washed and ready for the attention of Jim Hughes in Perrysburg, Ohio:
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Jim has the cases and all parts chemically stripped before beginning the rebuild process.
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Continued working on other items; here is the assembled and painted power steering pump:
24270413123_dbdccd0cc3_b.jpg

I tried painting the backing plates to look like the original zinc plating:
24804427971_020fc0eea4_b.jpg

But I found I could get the parts plated locally so I had the backing plates, fasteners, hood hinges and hood latch components plated to match the original finishes.

24807422564_d86f546347_b.jpg

Picked up the rear axle and assembled the torque tube, brakes and brake lines.

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Meanwhile, the nailhead is getting assembled.
All main, thrust and rod bearing clearances checked out great.
Currently waiting for new rocker shaft assemblies.

https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1643/25014556003_8f6cc9214b_b.jpg

I've also been preparing the body for media blasting. Almost ready!

https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1716/25702321481_98fdba3108_b.jpg

https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1606/25170784443_9cec740d9a_b.jpg

Busy times!

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