cxgvd

owning, fixing and driving a Snapper's era Buick

Recommended Posts

Interesting day Sunday, began with a pair of turkeys in my front yard.  Then we piled into the '39 Century and met up with 60 of our friends from our local car club, Kent Historic Auto Club for a 50 mile drive to Mooretown, On for a guided tour of their Museum.  Even though we ran through light rain the Buick's handling was comfortable and not twitchy on my very old bias ply tires.  My friend, however, told me that cold and wet was all part of the British sports car experience as he struggled to install his plexiglass side curtains and poorly fitting top.  His wife elected to stay home.  After a tour of the Museum which included buildings such as a general store and firehall the highlight was a display of running Lionel trains.  We left the tour at a communal dinner and stopped on the way home to run some errands.  All in all, even with light rain a wonderful way in which to enjoy a Sunday in the fall.

 

Regards, Gary

 

DSC_2118.JPG

DSC_2136.JPG

DSC_2148.JPG

DSC_2163.JPG

DSC_2178.JPG

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

She sure looks good Gary!

I'm going to print a shot of her sitting at the log cabin and show Fred (who used to own it once) and see what he has to say about it.

Good to see you are exercising her!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This afternoon I post photographs of my brass car friends, some of which I contact often, others a few times a year and yet others I might see once in a while.  It is a small gathering, I think the Snappers Brass and Gas Touring Region of the AACA has 300 registered members, the HCCA has 4000?  They are a great bunch of friends, we have repaired cars everywhere, parking lots, trailers and one time a Ford rear end was swapped on the side of the road with an axle someone else borrowed.  Gary

 

 

DSC_1084.JPG

DSC_1176.JPG

DSC_1085.JPG

DSC_1115.JPG

DSC_1153.JPG

DSC_1086.JPG

DSC_1833.JPG

DSC_1888.JPG

DSC_1795.JPG

DSC_1845.JPG

DSC_1260.JPG

DSC_1339.JPG

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bev and I are hosting a five day tour for the brass era cars in Chatham, On starting the week of July 12th, 2020.  We are making our plans based on 40 cars and 100 people and this what we have come up with so far.

 

Arrive Sunday; hospitality night.

Monday;  drive around Chatham, kick off lunch at a café owned by a firetruck collector, tour of RM Restoration's workshops and collection.

Tuesday; visit two large firetruck collections and a firehall.

Wednesday; travel to farms and small towns in the county, dinner in the Armories and evening entertainment by Chatham Concert Band.

Thursday; drive along the St. Clair river, picnic lunch, visit the Mooretown Museum.

Friday; short day of driving, a restored theater will be showing the best old car movie " Genevieve" for free to everyone, closing dinner.

 

This tour is hosted by the AACA Snappers Brass and Gas but is open to any pre 1916, if you would like to be added to email list send me a message here.  Registration materials should be available in December.

 

Bev and Gary

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is the one thing I find exciting concerning the 100 year old vehicle part of the antique car hobby.  When I acquired my 1915 McLaughlin touring car project ( which is getting new upholstery and a top this winter) it was wearing two nickel plated brass hub caps and one cast aluminum example.  The top photo shows a near mint cap with 24 threads per inch, TPI, could be a model 10 but they were usually brass, my '13 and '15 have nickel plated brass, 24 TPI, where was this one used?

I also found this project, somewhat crude, of someone having a go at trying to reproduce them.  They are not correct for my car, however, I would like to complete the job some time.  Much of the work has already been started.  BTW, through a buddy I now have two more proper hubcaps on the C25.

In the last photo the two wild turkeys survived our Thanksgiving!

 

Regards, Gary

 

DSC_2257.JPG

DSC_2258.JPG

DSC_2197.JPG

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Received a Snapper's newsletter by email this morning.  It includes a synapse from this years AACA tours and promotional text of next years events.  The Snapper's ( pre 1916 vehicles) have hosts and locations for three week long tours each year until 2023, as well as, Hershey Hangover and Lansing to Dearborn Endurance Run.

 

I cannot attach it here but I can forward the newsletter by email if you contact me.

 

Regards, Gary

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have an early cold weather snap and yesterday I reviewed old pictures and saved some to a disc.  The photos may highlight why I think brass car touring is the best thing in the hobby.  Going to a show and parking on the lawn is fine, but here is my friend's model T on a rock in northern Ontario.  The next is a line up while the people are visiting some venue, likely lunch or ice cream.  Running boards replace lawn chairs, since these cars have no trunk the rear floor is for the driver's to carry parts, tools, spare tire and picnic cooler.  You can be sure if you ever catch a ride in a 100 year old car you will be stepping over stuff to get to the back seat.  My friend's 1913 Benz, he drives a car where he has to wear a helmet, googles and gauntlets, no weather protection or windshield.  Finally, teenagers love driving brass era cars, these cars are for kids of all ages to enjoy.

 

Regards, Gary

 

DSC_0320.JPG

DSC01907.JPG

DSC_0069.JPG

DSC_3541.JPG

DSC_4497.JPG

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Snow has started to fly in southern Ontario and today I finished winterizing my 1913 Buick, model 31, everyone has their own way of getting the car ready and the following is mine.

 

Previous to parking the car it was thoroughly washed in the driveway with soap and clear water and left to dry in the sun.  I drain all the fuel from the gas tank and carburetor and replace the gas cap and close the drains.  Then I push the Buick into a single car heated garage with the top up and all of it's parts attached.  I do not start the engine to reduce oil dripping onto my fresh cardboard laid on the floor under the car.  The engine has permanent antifreeze which I leave alone.

 

Today I jacked up the car and placed it on axle stands, then to reduce a chance of mice taking up residence I remove the seat cushions so they will not have a place to hide.  I plug the exhaust pipe and carburetor air intake with steel wool for the same reason.  I do not think I have rodents but I keep some poison under the car and I monitor the garage for mouse tracks.  I also place dryer sheets around inside the car even though I feel it is hooey.  Can't hurt.  I have a car cover but I do not use it, car is always clean in the spring.

 

Last winter I performed a big job of refinishing the wooden wheel spokes, this year everything seems good to go for another summer of driving satisfaction.

 

Regards, Gary 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just completed putting the '13 Buick in the container a couple of days ago and the '15  truck in another container yesterday along with my daughters & son-in-laws 2000 Corvette.  I will be moving the Buicks around over the winter to work on them in my heated shop. :)

Edited by Larry Schramm (see edit history)
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Our 1915 McLaughlin touring car restoration has been going on for 4 years so far and I feel it was an easy restoration.  The car has been parked since 1991 and now I know it was abandoned to the garage because the rear axle pinion and ring gear were about to give up the ghost.  The axle and torque tube were given to a mechanic friend who saved it by fitting modern seals and bearings.  Another friend supplied me with a replacement ring gear and without their generosity this car would remain garage furniture.

 

The rest of the restoration was straight forward, clean, sand and paint, over and over on all the other parts.  One surprise was the top bows, one bow was a replacement and very good but the other 3 were cobbled together.  Why would someone replace one bow and not four, I guess that was how it was done in the 1960's?  Same reason the McLaughlin was painted resale red instead of beautiful dark blue?

 

A local restoration shop uses an Amish woodworking shop in Pennsylvania and they ordered me 3 new 57" steam bent, oak bows to go with the one I had.  Pleasantly surprised, received them quickly and at a reasonable cost.  Yesterday,  I fit them into the metal sockets and now I can set the assembly aside until it becomes time to fit a new top.  I have 10 yards of black Stayfast topping material for the job with new side curtains.

 

Regards, Gary

 

DSC_2370.JPG

DSC_2265.JPG

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very nice Gary.

I take it you had the old bows for a pattern right?

Quite surprised the replacement ones are all the same shape and size.

I'll have to look at my Overland, they could be like yours and will watch your progress with interest.

 

With the top, are you and Bev doing it or are you sending it out to Blenheim?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Doug;  Hope all is well.  Stan Uher's Classic Coachworks has a pattern at Witmer's Woodworking in Pa and he told them 57" wide and they came in in just a few weeks and were perfect, well, perfect for a wooden item.  And they cost just $27.00 each, I paid more to ship them than they cost to produce.

 

I have not picked a top maker yet though I have broached the subject with Stan, he is busy.  Likely, if we do it in his shop he would be in charge and would do the sewing and fitting and I would be the cheap labour.  I have the old top maybe as a pattern, though it too is a replacement and not original to the car.

 

Next on this McLaughlin is the upholstery and I looked at beautiful black cowhides from New Zealand when Bev and I were in Toronto last week.  I hope to meet up with Joe's , (Cardinal 95) upholsterer, he actually lives in Chatham.  He works elsewhere but I hope to get him to take on this job or at least most of it.

I will post more as we go, Gary

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All is well Gary, thanks.

Winding down from a long stretch of contract work but dealing with snow for a few and of course, equipment that needs attention. Salt is not our friend but having cars, antique and everyday drivers, I know that...

 

Even with the exchange the price on the bows sounds good. Naturally our postal rates are high here in Canada but what choice do we have?

 

I know Stan is busy as having been there last month I know he has what is a documented Detroit Packard Fire Truck in the works along with a Grey Dort and 29 Chev in the front. Then he had a Hearse with the ornate wood carving on the sides sitting out front that he is going to totally restore and stated it would be about three years to complete. We all know that that time frame can double as things come up but his work is spectacular and worth the wait!

IMG_6188.thumb.JPG.4f139b588c137b3dbf34114f023240eb.JPG

 

Knowing Joe originates from Amherstburg and in the car hobby it doesn't surprise me he knows people around here.

Your upholstery for the Buick sounds interesting, might send a PM later on.

 

Thanks for your postings.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the photo of the Detroit Fire Dept's ambulance.  The fan's shaft broke and when it did the whirling fan damaged the rad.  Stan received the Packard following the Chatham's Fire Fest in September for rebuilding.  The rad was sent to California for a new honeycomb core and while the Packard was waiting Stan is changing parts and fasteners that the hot rod shop thought would be OK.  The local hot rod shop restored the truck like it was a hot rod and Stan has 75 hours in making the Packard look like a proper piece of antique fire fighter equipment.  The Packard rad is due back in December, the '23 Gray Dort is due for a show in July and the Chevy taxi cab is anytime.  Stan said he was going to retire when the funeral coach is finished, hope not, I need him.  Gary

 

P.S.  Here is a photo of Stan and the Mrs. Jane in their 1915 Gray Dort.  Classic Coachworks is providing the Snapper's next summer with a coffee stop and tour of his shop.  He says the Packard funeral coach should be in pieces by then and restoration underway.

 

Gary

DSC_5515.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have seen them and his Grey Dort on Pelee Island on occasion and know he has fun with not only his cars but other projects as well saying he loves a challenge. 

Sorry to hear he is considering retiring but guess after all the years in this business, time to relax and continue to enjoy life to it fullest.

 

I took this photo of the truck engine while there and loved how he capped the water pump area in order to keep the water in it to be able to drive it in and out of his back shop for projects needing the work space. 

IMG_6189.thumb.JPG.07a2545c2635f676ad06656ea9107f06.JPG

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is an interesting to me discussion in the General Forums called " well sorted out pre war car" which is something I declared to own.  Thinking back to last fall, the last time I drove the 1913 Buick, the engine seemed hard to start, required much cranking.  When the engine is in a fine state of tune it will start with a half turn of the crank, a child could do it.  When a person has to put their shoulder into it rather than turn a key, it is tiring and it is not well sorted out.

 

I use Robert Bosch magneto FU4R and I have two, one connected to the engine and one under the back seat in reserve.  The best? mag seems to run about 200 miles then develops a miss at speed.  Last fall, during the Lansing to Dearborn Endurance Run, it happened again and I swapped mags in a laneway leading to a corn field.  I can change them in 10 minutes because they are self contained and identical, I completed the run and the rest of the Old Car Festival.  My local magneto man died and a buddy who would look after it is over an hour away, so I feel I need to learn a new skill and learn the art of electricity.

 

Second, as I was putting the Buick on axle stands for the winter I noticed some play in the tie rod ends.  The great part and also the worst is every part is every thing is serviceable but it will mean a trip to the machine shop to have new pins fabricated and maybe bushings installed.

 

When I look after these 2 fixes then the car will be "well sorted out."  I hope.

 

Happy Thanksgiving, Gary

DSC_2381.JPG

DSC_2383.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One week until the Wayne Funk Christmas gathering for old car people from southern Ontario, lower Michigan and northern Ohio.  What began with wieners and beans in Wayne's garage has morphed into a pizza party organized by Stahl's Auto Collection.  It is a pleasant day seeing old friends, drinking coffee, thinking about past adventures and planning for spring.

 

Now the day is called Back to Basics, Dec. 11 10-4pm at Stahl's, 56516 North Bay Dr., Chesterfield, Mi., 48051.  They do still collect toys for the Marine Toy Drive, $12.00 for the day or $2.00 less if you bring a toy.  Everyone invited, stroll by a 100 classic, antique, movie, and special interest vehicles in a private museum, have lunch, visit, listen to music, and dream.  Life is grand.  Bev and I plan to be there, see you?

 

Regards, Gary

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh, how times change.  When my wife and I acquired our 1913 Buick the car had gas operated headlamps, but not functional.  Using a web site named BrassBuicks.com a great fellow Harold Sharon gave me advise to get the correct pipes, hoses and all the parts to get them to light up.  When the job was completed I was so happy and excited I sent in a photo and called it Glowing Gaseous Globes.  For the past 20 years my photo was the banner picture on the BrassBuicks.com homepage.

Yesterday the moderator telephoned me asking if I had a higher quality photo for use in a new site.  I did not, the original picture was taken with an early digital camera which recorded photos to a floppy disc.  Luckily I could go out to the garage, connect an acetylene tank, strike a spark and duplicate the scene with my new Nikon D5300 camera.  BrassBuicks.com is set for another 20 years of Glowing Gaseous Globes.  Technology is ever advancing, always more and more computer power, however, motoring along in a 7 foot tall, 106 year old vehicle at 35 MPH remains my greatest thrill.

 

Harold Sharon is not longer with us, that is my deep regret.  Gary

 

DSC_2398 (2).JPG

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Restoring brass era cars is interesting, today, I "tied up" some backrest springs.  I met an upholsterer who is willing to help me recover the seats but he did not know about tying up springs, I learned how to from YouTube videos.  In the photos see the process, the cover is stout denim so the stuffing doesn't sink into the springs.  I also picked a leather supplier from Toronto because he has lovely hides from New Zealand.

 

Regards, Gary

 

DSC_2406.JPG

DSC_2408.JPG

DSC_2411.JPG

DSC_2413.JPG

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Getting the McLaughlin ready for new upholstery, I tied up the front seat back and compared the job to how the car looked as found.  The method in 2019 is to connect the spring coils at 8 mounting points with a light rope with a fine sheath compared with horizontal and vertical points only and with binder twine.

 

Also the gas tank top was cut off, sandblasted inside and out, and a new top manufactured and soldered into place.

 

Regards, Gary

DSC_2420.JPG

DSC_1555.JPG

DSC_1443.JPG

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Exciting news from our AACA Snapper's Tour next July, I can now declare to the pre '16 tourists our Thursday lunch stop is planned to be on an island in the St Clair river hosted by the Hadfield family.  Roger Hadfield learned to fly warplanes during WW2 is the retired from Air Canada, and still maintains his pilots license.  Their two boys, David, also retired from Air Canada, last summer flew a P51 from the National Aviation Museum in Ottawa to an air show in Oshkosh, Wi.  Chris Hadfield is retired from the RCAF and was the Commander of the International Space Station, an astronaut.

 

Registration materials are available and widely distributed, if I missed you please contact me for a copy.  You do not need to be a member of the Snappers but it is open only to drivers of pre1916 vehicles.  In the first two weeks of registration we have Hupmobile, Winton, Maxwell, White, Locomobile and Fords coming.  I hope to attract 40 vehicles and 100 people, however, all of our venues are large and there is no cutoff number.

 

In the photos, one day we received 4 applications, in the second is a view of Rondeau Bay in Lake Erie which is on our tour route and the final photo is how you will feel if you take a pass.

 

Regards, Gary

 

DSC_2404.JPG

DSC_2251.JPG

DSC_2159.JPG

  • Haha 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds like an exciting tour you're going to have Gary.

 

I'd almost be willing to offer to be a chase vehicle with my empty car trailer on the back of the Special for you but it's too close to the Buick National in Strongsville. 🤭

 

Keep us posted.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Doug;  I am looking for help and you and Cindy would be welcome.  Members of my local car club, the Kent Historic Auto Club, have been asked to help park trucks and trailers on Sunday, July 12th, help man the hospitality room at the Travelodge and greet the guests and distribute the tour packages.  There may be a BBQ as well.

 

Some of the Buick drivers are leaving Chatham Thursday night and boarding the ferry from Leamington to Sandusky, Oh to attend both Fields, Factories and Firetrucks and the Buick Club National Meet.  The closing dinner carries a separate entry cost so the Buicks could opt out and not feel they are buying a meal they would miss.

 

I know you cannot do this, I've heard from nearby car clubs who are coming to Chatham Friday afternoon to see the cars and watch the British romantic comedy "Genevieve" on the big screen at the Capitol Theatre.

 

Regards, Gary

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now