The meticulous build of this red and tan Buick convertible street rod is stunning. It is also a comfortable high tech car with lots of power. Under the hood is a 1965 Buick Nailhead 425 cubic inch, Rebuilt stock with 340 HP and 10.25 Compression Ratio. The tan interior is fully customized. A full list of the customizations made to this car is as follows: BODY MODIFICATIONS: Front Bumper-Spears removed. Grill-Chrome removed and opening widened to improve air flow. Headlights-Chrome rings removed. Headlight can modified and sealed beams installed. Hagan chrome rings installed. Park lights-Option item in 1939, now modified as turn signals. Fenders-Steel rod welded to inner front fender lip and contoured. Lizard skin sprayed to underside of fenders then painted. Hood-Paint removed from stainless trim. Trim attached with bolts and nuts. Hood braces relocated and redesigned to hold hood open without fear of wind damage. Stress points repaired and strengthened. Hood locks now have return springs. Underside of hood notched to allow use of larger radiator. Cowl-Cowl vent removed. Patch panel fabricated and welded in place. All interior hardware removed. Firewall-All horns, latches, wires, etc. removed and holes filled. Windshield-Interior frame strengthened with box tubing and welding. Tinted glass installed. Stainless removed from outside of windshield. Roof- Custom top fabricated. Back glass-Replaced old mail slot with larger opening. Tinted glass installed. Front doors-Interior of doors sprayed with Lizard Skin and painted. Window whiskers installed. Paint removed from stainless trim and door handles. Dual custom mirrors installed below vent windows. Stainless trim now bolted to doors. Side glass-Tinted safety glass installed. Quarter Panel- Rear quarter panel molded and reshaped into the rear fenders which were widened 2 ½ inches on each side to accommodate larger rear tires. Trunk Lid- Paint removed from all chrome. Light in middle of trunk lid now operates as a tail light, third brake light and turn signal. Optional custom license plate bracket. Chrome spacer between license plate and trunk lid. Custom license plate bolts. Custom Minnesotacollector car plate ’39 NAILHEAD’. Rear Bumper-Removed and holes filled. Additional body Changes not included above- Antenna removed and replaced with hidden antenna just below cowl. Hidden security system installed to disconnect battery-button is on key ring and another is hidden under the car at a undisclosed location. Tail pan widened 5” to accommodate widen rear fenders. Box tubing welded to the inside of body panels (windows, doors, door jambs, rocker panels) to strengthen body and improve rigidity. Entire body inside and underneath sprayed with Lizard skin to reduce noise and rock pecks. Installed day/night windshield mirror, electric windshield wipers and custom 20 gallon stainless gas tank. Battery relocated to trunk. Back up camera below rear tailpan with view hidden in speaker grill. Optional stream boards were lengthened to fit modified fender. Power supply converted to 12 volts and rewired with a Ron Francis wiring kit. Vents added to driver side of inner fender to help cool engine bay. (Right vent was standard as original exhaust of Straight 8 is on the right side.) Original radio and clock removed and original delete panel added. Floor shift with auto transmission indicator on dash. Emergency brake relocated to floor. ENGINE MODIFICATIONS Different vintage Buick engine installed-Engine is a 1965 Buick Nailhead 425 cubic inch. Rebuilt stock. 340 HP 10.25 Compression Ratio. Intake manifold change-Offenhouse 3 carb replaced original 1-4 BBL manifold. Carburetor change-3 Rochester 2 BBL carbs replace origin 4 BBL carb. Exhaust System Improvements-Sanderson headers added and custom 3” stainless dual exhaust with Flowmaster 40 mufflers. Air condition added-Vintage air A/C and heater added with Sandeen compressor filled with 134A. Ignition System-MSD HEI distributor and coil added. Cruise Control added-Dakota digital cruise installed but does not work for unknown reason. Radiator change-Custom high flow radiator installed. Electric Cooling Fan Added-Electric fan installed, controlled by manifold temp and air conditioning. Fuel E\Delivery System Change-A fuel log with pressure gauge was installed. Alternator Added-100 amp GM 1 wire chrome alt installed Overall Underhood Appearance-Paint, chrome and aluminum present. Wires absent. Firewall cleaned. Custom hood supports. Engine clean despite 3 long distance trips and 8000 miles on odometer. Engine Dress-Up added-Valve covers, valve train cover, air cleaner covers, ceramic coated intake and headers. Spark plug covers. Red distributor wires and coil. Low Voltage Wires-Hidden or not apparent. CHASSIS MODIFICATIONS Installation of Front Disc Brakes-GM 11” Rotors and Disc Brakes installed. Installation of Dual Braking System-Master Power Brake, Corvette style. Dual Master Cylinder and appropriate plumbing. Installation of Power Brakes-Master Power Brake Vacuum Booster installed along with 1961 Buick Electra Vacuum Tank. Installation of Rack and Pinion Steering-Power Rack and Pinion Steering was installed. Installation of Power Steering-A power steering pump and remote reservoir was added to activate the Power R & P above. Modifications of Stock Front Suspension-A Fatman Front Suspension was installed to replace the original suspension. It included optional coil over shock absorbers and chrome A-arms. Rear Suspension Modifications-Torque Tube and 2 piece drive shaft and rear axle were removed. Brackets were fabricated and the trailing arms modified and relocated to attach to the new adjustable brackets. The original panhard bar was reconnected to the new rear axle. Stiffer rear coil springs replaced the original ones. The trailing arms were modified for strength as they are not designed to be boxed. The lower shock absorbers were mounted to the trailing arms. This system will leave two parallel straight lines on the pavement every time all 3 carbs are used in 1st gear. It never hops or swerves. Boxing of Suspension and Control Arm-The original Buick frame is boxed. The convertible came with a heavier frame. The control arms do not, by design, lend themselves to boxing. However, they were substantially beefed up. Installation of Different Differential Housing-A Ford 9 inch rear end was installed to replace the original rear end. The gears are 3.00 and has the Ford equivalent of the GM locking rear end. Rear brakes were improved by adding oversize drums and shoes. The actual size and from which Ford vehicle escapes me. They work great and combined with front disc ‘stop on a dime’. Installation of Adjustable Suspension-The front coil over shocks are adjustable for ride height. I like the way it rides and sits, so have never changed the existing settings after the initial adjustments. Installation of Different Wheels-The original car came with 16” wheels. It now has 15x8 Crager Star Wire Wheels. Installation of Different Tires-The original were 16”Bias Ply. Now it has 15” Goodrich wide white wall radial tires. P225/70R15 Front; P255/70 R15 Rear. Installation of Different Transmission-The original 3 speed on the column was replaced with a GM 700 R4 custom built automatic overdrive transmission. The installation required a Bendsted transmission adapter. Shifting is controlled by a GM TV cable adapted to the carburetor linkage. Installation of Separate Transmission Oil Cooler-A separate transmission cooler is hidden behind the grill next to the horns. Modification of Factory Wheelbase-Because the rear fenders moved slightly (1-1 ½”) the adjustment was made in the manufactured brackets that the trailing arms attach to. INTERIOR MODIFICATIONS Installation of a Different Instrument panel-The original panel was glass enclosed. Part of it was retaine
Sixty-six years old and apparently ready for a run the length of Route 66, this well-reserved and original 1950 Buick Special sedan is the Pick of the Day.
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I had owned a 1956 Buick Special when I was sophomore in college.
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