Cornpanzers Riv

Back in a 63 Riv after a 13 year hiatus.

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This past Memorial Day I was walking through a local swap meet (minding my own business) when I stumbled upon a scruffy but surprisingly solid white 63. The paint was bad and the interior was nonexistent, but it had only a couple spots of rust. It couldn't be an Ohio car...it had trunk floors and rear body mounts. Sure enough, it was a Southern California car and best of all it was cheap.

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Here is what it looked like when I drove it home that day. The wide low profile tires look terrible and the brown pinstripe did it no favors either.

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I have been hip deep in a vintage Porsche restoration for four years. For a break, I needed something to play with where I didn't have to worry about "numbers matching" or proper "date codes". Something more "high school shop class" type mechanicals.

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This isn't my first Riviera though. About 16 years ago I bought a fairly low mileage silver/silver leather 63. The silver paint had failed completely, so I put it in Grey primer. The wheel choice was based on what I could afford, not what I really liked. It was a cool car, but I was young And broke and had to sell it to finance another toy.

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That car was sold to a friend who ended up selling it to famous hot-rod builder, Bobby Alloway. Next time I saw it, it was the giveaway car at a major street rod show.

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My new car will never be a Concours candidate. At some point had a complete 64 driveline swapped into it including a 425. All of the hoses and lines were dried out and cracking. The brake booster was blown, so I decided to Swap to a dual circuit system. One thing led to another and I had the top end completely apart. Turns out the valvetrain noise was a collapsed lifter. No biggie.

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I fixed the lifter, threw in a bunch of new gaskets and hoses and gave it a rattle can restoration. Turned out pretty good.

BTW, VHT Argent Silver wheel paint is a good match to the original stuff.

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                  very interesting story and pics.....thanks for posting and welcome to the  forum!

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. . . great story and pictures, enjoy !!

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I have a correct red wrinkle air cleaner for a '63 that I'd trade you for that chrome one.   You have to use an adapter for that air cleaner to work on your carb don't you?  If not, are you running an aftermarket carb? 

 

Ed

 

http://www.secondchancegarage.com/public/photogallery4/1963-buick-riviera-eng2.cfm

Edited by RivNut (see edit history)

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Thanks everyone.

Ed, I drug that air cleaner home from a Pomona swap meet in California about 10 years ago. It's not correct, but I love it. I think it is a 66 GS piece. And yes, I have an adapter on the carb. :-)

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My vision for the car is an early 60s mild custom...with some patina. I took off the goofy low profile tires and replaced them with more appropriate white walls. I also dropped the suspension about 3 inches all the way around. It will never be a show car. Just a good ole cruiser.

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This has been dormant for a long time. Now that I have my Porsche project done, I'm back on the Riv.  It had got lightly rear ended back in the 70s and the bodywork repair was questionable at best. The only real rust on the car was in the trough below the rear window… Pineneedles had collected there and rusted out the window frame. 

Last year I rebuilt the window frame and that was about as far as I got. As of this week it's at my buddies body shop getting the rear half straightened out. Some  think I'm crazy, but I'm only going to paint the back half for now. That way I can get the glass and interior back in and enjoy driving it this summer. Next winter I will do the front half. I don't have the time, money or zeal for another full restoration. It's white, so I'm not concerned too much with paint match.

Meanwhile, I have collected a really nice wood steering wheel, factory tachometer and original aluminum valve covers.  I have a new carpet and headliner from Clark's and a full round of chrome interior roof line moldings. Can't wait to be driving it again 

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Edited by Cornpanzers Riv (see edit history)
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Here is what distracted me for so long.  It's a cool car and I'm very proud of the end result, but I'm looking forward to having something that I can pile all my buddies in a go out for a night on the town. 

 

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                Good to see you back on the forum.....The Porsche looks great and I look forward to seeing more pics of your Riviera project!

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Love those Daisey spoke wheels on the car from years back !!! Looks like a big tire on the rear !!!

I like old skool stuff !!!!!!???

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IF you lower the Riv. 3 inches you will NOT be able to fill it with your buddies & go cruisin' because the frame will be dragging the ground UNLESS you use MUCH stiffer rate springs.

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Sooo...once we got in there I started waffling on only painting the back half this year. Monday afternoon I started stripping off the front half panels. 

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Sunny and mid-40s today, so I tried to get some detail work done. I hate buffing in my shop, slinging debris everywhere. 

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