chistech

32' Oldsmobile Deluxe Convertible Roadster

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My buddy joe who’s restoring a 32’ Olds sport coupe made a paper template of his original rumble seat floor pan mat. The original had a fisher logo in the center and I purchased two reproduction mats from Mac Blair (the Buick guy). I fit the template to my car, adding to the template anywhere that was needed, and I put it down on my new mat, which was on a hollow core door, locating the Fisher logo in the center. Using my large RC modeling T pins, I pushed the pins in deep at each corner of every dimension until all of the mat was located with pins. I then used a steel straight edge, aligned up against pin to pin, then cut with an exacto knife. This technique worked perfectly and I cut my mat out without any issues. It fit just about perfect and only needed a tiny touch in a couple places to allow it to lay perfectly flat. Of course when all is done, the mat and all insides of the car will get cleaned and detailed. 

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Edited by chistech (see edit history)
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Please excuse my ignorance. Was the car you are restoring an expensive car when new? The fine detail on the car is amazing, when compared with many of the early 1930's British cars, of that period. I noticed in your photos above, the hole punched at the end of the cut in the rubber - what a good idea to stop the cut spreading - I will have to remember that idea. Can we have a photo of your 'T pins' as I cannot visualise what they are. I am enjoying your posts, keep up the good work and excellent posts.

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Hi Mike, your question is a good one. The comparable model Chevy in 32’ sold for $545 with the price on this Olds in the deluxe version, $1,090. So basically, the Olds cost twice as much and shared virtually the same windshield, roof, seats, and interior panels. The real differences were the 8” longer wheelbase, flat head engine w/74 hp (vs 60), larger tires, adjustable shocks, automatic choke, full engine oil pressurization, engine oil cooler/warmer, and golf bag door, all on the Olds. So for double the price, it was an upscale car from the Chevy but a tick or two below the Buick and Cadillac.

      I will get a picture of the T pins but visualize a stout common pin but instead of the round head, the body of the pin is bent 90d from the vertical, then goes a short length, then is bent back 180d over itself, double the distance past the vertical, then bent 180d down under itself, running back to the vertical, forming a “T” shape with the one piece of wire. The hole was done on the factory mats and I just copied it. They were pretty crafty back then . By the way, life expectancy for the Olds and Chevy was considered to be about 3 years back then!

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Here go Mike, next to a ruler in your language!😉 When I cut the front mat, I’ll take pictures of the process using the pins as guides and reference points.

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Thanks for both responses. What do you mean "in your language!" - I was very happy with feet and inches! :D Yet another rule, no pun intended, probably forced on us by the European Union. We lost Imperial gallons and have to buy fuel in litres. At least we can still have a pint of beer and travel in miles. I shall have to look up those pins and see if they are available over here - I can think of a few uses for them.

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I have seen those pins here, way back. Were they hat pins or something?

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Most all modelers who build with balsa wood will use those pins. I would say most hobby shops should have them if you still have hobby shops over there. Most of ours have been lost to internet/mail order sales. They come in a few sizes with the smaller ones being about an inch high and the largest (I’ve seen anyway “ are about 1.75”. They come in very handy for many different projects. A quick search of “modeling T pins” will offer many places to purchase them.

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You can get T pins at Michael's Craft stores., or other Arts and Crafts store. 

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19 minutes ago, John S. said:

You can get T pins at Michael's Craft stores., or other Arts and Crafts store. 

Problem is John I don't think they have Michael's or AC Moore craft stores in the UK. But maybe they do. 

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No pictures to post because I cannot really show what was done. Installed my spare original keyed coil in the dash and connected all necessary wiring. Because the car has sat for a few months, the carb bowl was dry. It seems this is a common issue with the 32’ Olds and the Stromberg EC-2 carburetor. So rather than turn the motor over a ton to fill the bowl, I took the cover off and filled the bowl. My battery wasn’t charged up so after a few cranks it started slowing down with not even a pop. I hooked up my 6vt charger and let it sit. After a while, I tried it again and again, no signs of life. Started thinking my spare coil was bad so I pull a plug wire and turned it over, nothing! So I let it sit a while to charge and continued working on something for my kitchen when my brother showed up. He came over to see my progress and I told him I was trying to start it with no luck. So he said “do you have all your wires connected and properly”? So I look at the coil and everything is right so I go outside the car and check the wire to the distributor and it’s tight. I just happened to glance at the distributor cap and see the wire from the coil to the center of the cap is just sitting on top of the cap, not pushed down into the cap! Then I realized when I put the wire through the firewall grommet, I never put it into the cap correctly. Duh! So I push it down, go inside the car, turn the key, push the starter pedal down in half a revolution, she fired right up and kept running but at too high an rpm so the automatic high idle would need some adjustment. Just to explain if anyone is confused, the Olds has a keyed coil mounted inside the car behind the dash. A negative wire from coil and a coil ignition wire both run through a grommet in the firewall to the distributor. There is no coil mounted under the hood in the engine compartment.

       So we made some adjustments, turned the knob in the steering wheel down to low idle, adjusted the low idle air bleed, and let it sit. My restored oil gauge showed 30 pounds and the water gauge climbed to 190 with the car sitting after 10 minutes with the outside temps in the high eighties. All seems very good with one leak at the fuel pump turning out to be a loose dome only. Tightened the dome nut and all is good. I’ll be taking it off the dollies and getting it on its tires to start driving it in and out of the garage to get it out in the sun. The sun will start hardening up the clear coat and help tighten up any looseness in the top.

Edited by chistech (see edit history)
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We don't need pictures, just a short video of it running.  Come on Ted! :D  Another mile stone reached.

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7 hours ago, Laughing Coyote said:

We don't need pictures, just a short video of it running.  Come on Ted! :D  Another mile stone reached.

Problem is, I don’t think the site will support a video. Another problem is I don’t even know how to put one on YouTube!

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1 hour ago, chistech said:

Another problem is I don’t even know how to put one on YouTube!

 

You are not alone!

 

I found the T pins on eBay, in the UK, and have ordered them. I hope they will come in handy one day.

Edited by Mike Macartney (see edit history)
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Just messing with you Ted.  I know you have a lot more things on your plate to do.  The Olds is looking great.

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Going to try and post a video to YouTube and if it works, I’ll post the link here. Drove it out of the garage under its own power and it’s the first time with the body back on the chassis. It drove really well considering I could only shift into 2nd in my drive. Brakes felt really good with no pulling to either side and no strange noises. It literally started immediately after two pumps on the accelerator then a push on the starter pedal. I realize the minute it fires up, you have to be ready to turn the idle down as it likes to start with a fast idle, but it’s to fast not to turn it down. With the engine warm I decided to quickly wire up the heater fan and switch. Man that Harrison Sr. Heater throws a ton of heat and with the car only being a two seater, my wife should be nice and toasty on our fall rides. The fan on this heater actually spins pretty fast compared to most 6Volt fan motors I’ve messed with.

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Ted, that is a wonderful  milestone, getting the Olds to this point running and driving.. What a great feeling of accomplishment, I take my hat off to . I ,for one,  would love to see a video of of your work. You, and others on this post inspire so many of us  to  actually finish our own  projects . Thanks, as always, John

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Been too busy to try and take a video but will try later this weekend. I did have a funny issue yesterday though when I went to bring it in the garage. I saw my neighbor (he’s an electrician)at the end of my driveway so I drove the Olds down to the street to tell him a friend called looking for a recommendation for a good electrician and that I told them I’d have my neighbor call them. When he walked up to the passenger door, he commented on how nice the car looks and how good it was running. When he looked at the dash, he saw the knobs and asked what they were. I pushed in on the cigar lighter so he could see the eye glow orange but instead, the car died! WTH. Tried to start it and it wouldn’t fire so we pushed it down my drive up into the garage because the sky had turned black and heavy rain was minutes away. Turns out when I put in my spare amp gauge to complete the electrical connections I only hand tightened the connections and when I put the load of the lighter along with the ignition load, the loose connections couldn’t carry the voltage. A quick tightening with a 3/8” wrench and all is good. 

     I did do some work on the car at least. I took the original window T rubber weather strips, I have four of the original six. Most are no longer T shaped as the rubber on which the window closes against have long broken off except for one strip. These T strips get covered with an adhesive bowdrill cloth. Normal practice among most restorers is to completely cover the rubber wrapping the cloth around both edges to the bottom. I decided to take a closer look at mine which appear to be completely original. All four show only the outside edge was wrapped underneath to the bottom and the bowdrill was only on the face of the T that contacts the window frame then over the tip and down the inside about a 1/4”. The rubber has two defined depressions molded into it where the edge of the bowdrill starts on the inside of the T and finishes on the bottom of the outside edge. The new replacement rubber from Steele has the depression on the rear of the T but not on the bottom. The originals also had some 20-22g sheet metal stiffeners molded into the bottom. The Steele replacement rubber does not. 

     I cut the sheet metal from the rubber with a utility knife then bead blasted the side that would be contact cemented to the rubber. There are four elongated holes in each sheet metal piece for mounting them with 6-32 screws. The elongated holes are for adjusting the weather strip in or out from the window frame. I cut some T rubber stock to just over length needed and glued them to each metal strip. To cut the holes for the mounting screws I used my small upholstery ice pick and poked it through each hole and through the rubber. With a sharpened piece of brass tubing in my drill and putting the tubing over the ice pick as a guide, I cut each hole in the rubber down to the metal as the originals were done.  Got all four rubber T’s glued and cut to proper length but need to order the self adhesive bowdrill cloth from Steele Rubber. I have to get some sheet metal to make up the two needed that go on the two removable frame pieces above each door then make them up. All will get 45d cuts at each mating end then covered with the bowdrill cloth.

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Edited by chistech (see edit history)
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Made a short video of me starting the car and backing it into my garage. My buddy videoing thought the car stalled because he couldn’t hear it running after I turned the high idle down.

Not sure if the below will work if copied and pasted on YouTube. Sorry, it’s my first attempt at this.

 

 

 

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Edited by chistech (see edit history)
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Got a call today from the plater with my dash panel. It’s all done and shipping out Monday. He told me the tape I recommended worked perfectly. Big difference now. First two pictures were the platers original attempt to have me accept it. The second two are his work now which is correct. 

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Don’t kill the messenger, but some of those lines look a bit wavy and not evenly spaced.  I know photographs tend to exaggerate certain features, and perhaps the factory jobs suffered from similar applications, but something doesn’t look right.  Feel free to stone me if you don’t agree.  Not trying to be overly critical, here, but this restoration is as close to perfect as any I have seen.

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Yup, the bottom lines. Didn’t see them until I blew up the pictures 😕

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At the level you have taken this car to,  I think I would think pretty hard about accepting this dash.  Look over the top of the large (speedometer?) hole and on the upper right corner.

I think the car deserves to be as close to flawless as possible, and this dash isn't.  You will be looking at those wavy lines every time you drive the car.

Just a beautiful, beautiful job on this car.

 

 

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