Jump to content

Dropping in to say Hello, and my restoration journey


Lil-Riv
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hi All, 

 

Just wanted to say hi, and share my Riviera story. I've been following and lurking on this forum for a few months and thought it was time to share. 

 

My dad owned a Riviera since long before I was born, which he bought from the first owner from out west (Alberta I believe, maybe Edmonton in the early '80's). It was a 1964, Black on Black, with a factory 425 dual quad (#'s matching car, with KX code), cruise control, wood steering wheel, 4 note horn, and all the power options. I remember well my childhood in this car throughout the early '90's going on Sunday drives in the backseat with my dad. My mom even loved the car so much he bought a second 1964 Riviera just for her! This one was Blue on blue aftermarket cloth interior, aftermarket vinyl top, 425 with A/C, but not as many power options.  

 

After dad passed in '98, unfortunately my mom sold both cars to a local guy where I lost track of them for 24 years. Out of the blue last year, he called me up asking if I was interested in buying them back. Apparently he had every intention of restoring them both but always had "something else" that needed fixing first. So immediately after purchasing them he had the black car was shoved into a barn on a local farm, and the blue car was pushed into a field where they sat until the day I picked them up. 

 

And pick them up I did, and brought them both home again. My dads Black Riv deserves a full restoration despite some pretty advanced rust (I do after all live in the Canadian Rust-Belt of the Great-Lakes region. Even after sitting in a barn for 24 years, it will need lots of floor work). The Blue one I'm sad to say has lived its best life already, and will live on in parts and pieces as required to bring the black one back from the dead. Any parts left over will be posted here for sale, or even just for give away at shipping cost. There may not be much left that's good, but send me a message if you're looking for anything specific.

 

I've started the full restoration of the Black Riv already and started taking it apart this April. I already have the body stripped and off the frame, and the frame stripped ready to go to the blasters at the end of the month. I've taken hundreds of photos (to document, but also to help me when it comes time to put it all back together) so I'll update this post regularly with updates and pics. 

 

I've started looking through previous posts on where to find the best parts. There's a lot to go thru though, so if I post questions previously answered, I apologize in advance!

 

Thanks, 

Dave 

20220804_222926[1].jpg

20210717_103902 - Copy.1.jpg

20210717_103910(0).1.jpg

20210717_104038.1.jpg

20210717_103214.1.jpg

20210717_103228.1.jpg

20210717_103256.1.jpg

20210724_133623.1.jpg

20210724_135430(0).1.jpg

20210724_135437(0).1.jpg

20210815_141511.1.jpg

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Welcome to the Forum Dave. Yea what a story. :-X22 Thankfully the guy put the black one in barn (true barn find) LOL.....and a field find. KX car looks well optioned. That original steering wheel horn bar and center cap is probably worth the price of admission itself!

Consider joining ROA. This would be a great story in the magazine.  

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dave, Welcome to the Riviera Family! Glad you are no longer a "lurker" but an active participant.

 

I'd like to echo Jason's comments about joining the ROA. You will have access to a wealth of information. And, yes, this would make a great article for the ROA magazine, "The Riview".

 

Looking forward to seeing and reading "The rest of the story"!

 

Good luck!

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks Tom, I probably won't be installing the turbines after the restoration is done - I'm leaning towards a more modern look. I have maybe 5 or 6 turbines between the two cars, some wire wheel covers with the Riviera centre hub and some generic buick covers that all came in parts boxes. If you're interested, you can have them. Only 2 turbines came with centre hubs, and they are in rough shape however.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Lil-Riv said:

Thanks Tom, I probably won't be installing the turbines after the restoration is done - I'm leaning towards a more modern look. I have maybe 5 or 6 turbines between the two cars, some wire wheel covers with the Riviera centre hub and some generic buick covers that all came in parts boxes. If you're interested, you can have them. Only 2 turbines came with centre hubs, and they are in rough shape however.  

The Turbinator is trying to calculate shipping and handling as we read this. 😆

  • Like 1
  • Haha 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dave, it looks like we both started our rusty restorations in Ontario about the same time. I'll be following and learning as we go and just hope you have some bits and pieces left over that I might be able to use. I'm down by Picton btw.

Good luck!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Dan, we can thank the humid Ontario climate for all those seized bolts and rotted floors. Picton isn't far from me here in Ottawa - if we are working on the same stuff, maybe we can team up on shipping costs for new parts. I was planning on shipping everything to Ogdensburg to avoid those absurd international shipping costs since it's only a hop across the border for me. If you are ordering the same stuff, we could save coin by teaming up 🤔

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

13 hours ago, Lil-Riv said:

Hi Dan, we can thank the humid Ontario climate for all those seized bolts and rotted floors. Picton isn't far from me here in Ottawa - if we are working on the same stuff, maybe we can team up on shipping costs for new parts. I was planning on shipping everything to Ogdensburg to avoid those absurd international shipping costs since it's only a hop across the border for me. If you are ordering the same stuff, we could save coin by teaming up 🤔

Sounds great! Once I've met the (unknown) threshold for participation in the forum, I'll be able to message you. Does anyone know what that threshold  is? I'm a bit of a newbie on forums and don't understand some of the processes.

Cheers

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi again everyone, time for an update. 

 

Starting in April I gutted the interior of the Riv. Every nut, bolt, and fastener was tagged and bagged, and every electrical connector was labeled. Nothing was thrown away (except disposable items that couldn't be cleaned like the carpet and headliner) and even the broken bolts were tagged and bagged for replacement. Luckily, I saw on earlier posts that Mr. G's Enterprises supplies an interior screw kit, because many rusted screws broke or stripped. 

 

All exterior chrome and stainless was also removed, bumpers, grills, lights, as well as inner and out fenders. Finally I craned the engine out and I was ready to remove the body from the frame. 

 

To remove the body, I first welded a cross-braced  endo-skeleton to support the body structure and prevent any twisting, warping, or shifting of the body while it's disconnected from the frame. This provided particularly handy, as it was a good craning location to lift the body off the frame. 

 

20220418_163808.jpg

20220729_121209.jpg

20220729_132034.jpg

20220729_141255.jpg

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

And just over the past few weeks, I've been stripping  the suspension off the frame, and it's ready to go to the sandblasters and powder coaters next week. 

 

The engine will go to the Machinist on Wednesday and so will begin the full restoration process (and loosing all my savings in the process)

20220729_141326.jpg

20220806_160149.jpg

20220805_195858.jpg

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Your on your way now for sure. Be careful with that intact horn bar, fragile and very hard to find a good original 👍👍

Keep posting your progress 

 

Brian

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Brian, unfortunately I think the horn bar is already broken. Someone has attempted to repair it in the past. I'm hoping I can weld or braze it back together or find a reproduction

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, Lil-Riv said:

Hi Brian, unfortunately I think the horn bar is already broken. Someone has attempted to repair it in the past. I'm hoping I can weld or braze it back together or find a reproduction

Ahh that’s a bummer, maybe it could be saved but not sure, I believe they are pot metal. Gene at ab&g, and Steve Lorenzen usually have some when your ready. That going to be a really neat car. 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, Lil-Riv said:

Thanks for the tip, I'll teach out to them when I'm ready!

You got it. Your in the right place here. Join the ROA and get the service manuals if you don’t have them already. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

With so much time and money and effort, this heavily optioned car should be restored to its original configuration including those FABULOUS turbine wheel covers. Everyone would LOVE to have power vent windows

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm planning to go back mostly stock! And to be honest, I do like the turbines, but I don't have a complete set and the centre hubs are far beyond repair at this point. It seems like I would have better luck going to an aftermarket rim. 

 

Are power vent windows rare? 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

28 minutes ago, Lil-Riv said:

I'm planning to go back mostly stock! And to be honest, I do like the turbines, but I don't have a complete set and the centre hubs are far beyond repair at this point. It seems like I would have better luck going to an aftermarket rim. 

 

Are power vent windows rare? 

Darwin Falks series of articles, now found on the ROA website, has all this information broken down by percentages.  The articles are called “Options not included.”

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks Ed, I submitted payment for membership to the ROA and just waiting to hear back. I'll definitely check out those article once my membership passes. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
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
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...