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1965 Riviera Gran Sport (?) in NE on CL for $3500


cjp69
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Just got off the phone will the fella that has it listed. It came from an estate of a friend of his that passed away eight years ago. This was a project he never got to. It sold at an auction last fall by proxy and the high bidder never showed up to get the car. Trunk has some rust as does drivers side floor pan. Under vinyl roof is rusty as well. At least some of the car was painted at one time. The guy I talked to did not have the engine numbers checked. Would be a very nice car redone. Someone needs to rescue this one.

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This car was at auction both on site and via the net a couple of months ago and sold for $3000 to an internet bidder. The winner showed up, from the Chicago area (looong drive with a trailer)  and backed out of the deal after inspecting the car in person. I spoke with the auctioneer after the winning bidder reniged and on site he inspected the engine numbers while we were on the phone. The engine is a 401 and not original to the car. My impression after viewing many pics of the car was that someone used an original GS for parts while restoring this car, maybe in the `80`s judging from the add on side moldings and added vinyl top. It appears someone may have used the front fenders from an original Gran Sport (maybe the whole front clip?) and transferred the rear emblem to the incorrect location on the car being restored. The interior looks to have been under water at least a few inches judging by what appears to be water marks so this may have been a flood victim. The original colors and equipment are nice, Twilight Turquoise with a black cloth custom interior, but this really is a parts car.

  Tom Mooney

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OK Riviera People: In my opinion any complete and somewhat not that damaged or that rusted a 65 Riviera IS FAR FROM A PARTS CAR. A Barney car of course is a different story.

 

Remember in the 80s when guys were partin' 59 4867 converts, 59 cad converts? 59 Chev converts? Skylark converts?  I believe the 65 Riviera with a production of 30K+ units is headed for that category.

 

The 65 Riv is a sleeping giant that is in the process of waking up. There are several rough examples for sale for cheep and I'm thinkin' this ship is gonna set sail sooner than later. The GS is more popular because of the muscle car trend, never the less a 65 Riviera is a top contender for one of the sexiest Buicks of all time as well as cars of that entire era too.

 

I personally am almost constitutionally incapable of parting a 65 Riv (or almost any other First-Gen Riv) out so perhaps I am biased

 

Mitch

Edited by lrlforfun (see edit history)
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The 65 Riv is a sleeping giant that is in the process of waking up. There are several rough examples for sale for cheep and I'm thinkin' this ship is gonna set sail sooner than later.

 

Ticket prices for this boat trip are already getting higher. I am in line but afraid the ship is gonna set sail without me if I don't hurry and get my act together. In other words I think you are spot on Mitch.

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Since I am about an hour away from this one. I thought I would take a look for myself.

The engine is a MT code and I couldn't budge it and appears to be stuck. The glove box does have the Gran Sport plaque on it, as does the passenger fender. The driver side emblem is missing, but you can see that it had been there at one time

There is a lot of rust, more then previous description and pictures show. No floor left on the driver foot well area at all. Passenger side maybe a bit better. What is left of the carpet is wet, to say the least.

It would be a very ambitious undertaking to restore.

Loren

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Since I am about an hour away from this one. I thought I would take a look for myself.

The engine is a MT code and I couldn't budge it and appears to be stuck. The glove box does have the Gran Sport plaque on it, as does the passenger fender. The driver side emblem is missing, but you can see that it had been there at one time

There is a lot of rust, more then previous description and pictures show. No floor left on the driver foot well area at all. Passenger side maybe a bit better. What is left of the carpet is wet, to say the least.

It would be a very ambitious undertaking to restore.

Loren

See post #7

  Tom

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I don't quite understand your directive.

I have read all posts and #7 has some speculation tone to it. Also post #4 states he doesn't see the Gran Sport emblem on the glove box door. I thought it might be ok to clarify that it is there.

The only way anyone can be certain of it's pedigree, would be to check the frame for serial number. I didn't feel it would hurt to point out that it is a '66 MT code 401. Just a little clarification.

Sorry I stuck my $.02 in.

Loren

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Neither the serial number on the frame nor the VIN  will  verify that the car was once a true Gran Sport.  Grand Sport was an option (code A9) that could be added to any '65 Riviera, therefore therefore there is no way to positively identify a Gran Sport with one item - identifying one takes a combination of things.  One other thing you could look for would be a BS code transmission.  All Gran Sports came with a 3.42 posi rear end, but that could be ordered as a separate option as well.  Read the article on "How to identify a Gran Sport" on the ROA's website.

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I don't quite understand your directive.

I have read all posts and #7 has some speculation tone to it. Also post #4 states he doesn't see the Gran Sport emblem on the glove box door. I thought it might be ok to clarify that it is there.

The only way anyone can be certain of it's pedigree, would be to check the frame for serial number. I didn't feel it would hurt to point out that it is a '66 MT code 401. Just a little clarification.

Sorry I stuck my $.02 in.

Loren

To clarify,  your post supports the info in post #7. I made post #7 in hopes of saving a prospective buyer a wasted trip/time given the lack of information in the original ad. This really is a parts car.....

  Tom Mooney

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Ed,

Thanks for that pointer. So, the Riviera is just like the '65 Skylark Gran Sport, in that there is nothing in the serial number that shows it to be a GS.

Is there a code on the cowl tag to indicate the Gran Sport option? For the Skylark Gran Sport, we have determined that there is, with

the exception of those cars built in the Fremont plant.

Tom,

I agree with that conclusion of being nothing more then a parts car. There is nothing like having a "boots on the ground" look.

And, that was the primary purpose of my post.

Loren

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Loren,

 

The data tag on  the Riviera shows only the options that required FIsher body to do something to a basic body to accept an option - a tab, a screw hole, etc. OR what was installed as an option on the back half of the car at the Fisher Body plant.  At fisher body, windows were installed, and the back half of the car was built.  So a rear window defroster, rear speaker, power windows, power seats (provisions for wiring), remote trunk release, etc were installed or provisions made for other options. 

 

When that partial car went to final assembly, other options could be "dropped in"  - tilt wheel, radio of choice, electric antenna, cornering lights, guidematic, twilight sentinel, cruise control, and in '65 the A9 Gran Sport option. front fenders, hood, bumpers, engine and transmission, suspension, tires and wheels and wheel covers - or rally wheels, and what ever else was needed to complete the car.

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OK Riviera People: A couple things here to add....

 

As a very long term owner of a 65 Riv GS I remember mine worn out with under 100K. It's no wonder. That 3:42 rear end has the engine revving higher all the time. Add a large dousing of gasoline to the crankcase through the carbs and the fact that the 425 has a little less meat on it than a 401 all add up to a somewhat shorter engine life.  Still, even though most these were purchased by more mature people who actually gave their cars good care and did not let their Rivieras suffer indignities like peeling out off the show room floor,  they didn't last that long.

 

At the time I first got my car I was on a budget so I purchased a lo mileage wrecked 64 Riv from a junk yard. I transferred the motor as well as many of the other good parts to my car that were fatigued. I could also see where many original motors were removed and sent to the scrap heap.  I also remember a few 65 GS's that had a single 4 barrel most likely due to the problems with the dual quads that many lousy mechanics couldn't overcome. Also, who would really remember (or actually document) all the other full size  D-Q Buicks that had original motors which played out.

 

That said, out of all the 3,000 or so dual quad 65 Rivieras (not to mention 64 65 and 66  Le Sabre wagons, Wildcats, Electras and Rivs) probably the lions share had transplants after that 7-10 year old period.  At the time the original motor didn't matter. It STILL DOESN'T.  I believe that most owners got junk yard motors to keep their cars going because the cars were important to them! 

 

BTW, In many Western States where cars didn't suffer like in the Torture Belt states there were several chain outfits like Automotive Engineering who had an assembly line type machine shop that removed and replaced the klunked out engines with an exchange  (depending on the application) rebuilt engine.  This phenomenon was also enhanced by a myriad of production enamel paint shops that could scuff and shoot a fresh good looking paint job with synthetic enamel lickety-split!

 

 

Back to the turquoise heap.  This is what's out there now.  GS, no GS, ZS, AS, BS, any S. Most are going to need a motor rebuild, most are going to be rusted to beat the band, (even in the Western States Father Time is watching with vigilance) most are going to need the full meal deal anyway. Seeing the rise in their popularity I'm predicting and again saying that the boat's sailin' and if y'all want a 65 Riv,  the departures on the boat schedule are less and less.

 

 

Mitch

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