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Wouldn't You Really Rather Have A Buick?


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#1 Harold

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 02:57 AM

Here's one of my older builds that I just spent a week 'Overhaulin'. It's the old AMT '66 Buick to which I've added the floorpan and a stretched frame from AMT's '67 Impala (the Wildcat was a 'B' body on the longer Electra chassis) and the engine and trans from the AMT '66 Riviera. The body was left untouched through this whole process (I still have a couple foil touch-ups to do, though). The hood was never really finished (though I'll be fixing that this weekend).

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Here's the new chassis next to an unstretched one that's going under a '65 Grand Prix (note the Pontiac wheels and engine).

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Here's all the parts marshalled together for final assembly. This conversion went together quite nicely. All I had to do to the Buick interior was to remove the floor and it dropped right onto the Chevy floorpan. To stretch the chassis, I cut right across the trans mount on the Buick chassis. That crossmember is how much you stretch the frame. I originally had it in the same position as the frame it came off of, however, the Buick has a four- speed, so I had to dismantle the frame and put the crossmember further back to accept the Riv's transmission. The second crossmember was cut from between the frame rails of the Buick chassis and mounted in the same spot on the Chevy frame. The engine compartment was removed from the Impala body and stretched a scale 5" between the firewall and fenderwells. The seats were raised up with some wheel inners from the parts box and the console was removed from the old floorboard and installed on the Chevy floorpan.
The body is painted Dupli-Color Milano Red from their Import Colors line, and I used the same color on the engine. As soon as I get the proper diameter solder, I'llbe able to tie in the exhaust (and I'll add the driveshaft at that time).

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That's the old Buick chassis next to the new one.

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This was a fun project. This Buick had always been one of my favorite models, and I was glad that I could pull of the switcheroo on the frame to give this car what I feel it deserves. Full frame, poseable steering and full engine compartment detail. Plus, those Pegasus wheels and wide and wider Gatorbacks from a Corvette are just the icing on the cake.


#2 Zoom Zoom

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 03:14 AM

Now that's a great looking Buick ;)

#3 Clay

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 04:19 AM

That's one nice Buick. Nice job Harold.

#4 george 53

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 04:46 AM

Geeze Harold, that's BEAUTEEFUL!!!! I remember them BIG ol' monsters prowlin around wit 445 WildCat's in 'em. GREAT CARS! and a GREAT MODEL of a great car! You dun gooood!!! <_< :rolleyes: ;)

#5 Harold

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 05:30 AM

Geeze Harold, that's BEAUTEEFUL!!!! I remember them BIG ol' monsters prowlin around wit 445 WildCat's in 'em. GREAT CARS! and a GREAT MODEL of a great car! You dun gooood!!! <_< :rolleyes: ;)

Yeah, George, we used to build the darn things here (old Buick Main, Hamilton and James P. Cole). The bodies were finished at Fisher 2 on South Saginaw street (GM shuttered it and turned it into a yuppy mall twenty years ago) and trundled off to Buick on car carriers. Now Buick City is leveled, and for the last four years has been a vacant wasteland. The 445 name was taken from the engine's torque rating. The engine was the old nailhead maxed out to 425 cubes. The one in mine has the two quads.

#6 MrObsessive

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 06:12 AM

Yes, I'd really rather have THAT Buick! Not today's! :rolleyes:

Beautiful car Harold! Great job also of lengthening the chassis from the '67 Chevy..............hard to tell where you made the cuts unless you told us.

1965-66 were the pinnacle IMO of GM's styling prowess with the '61's coming in a close second!

I bet if they had that same styling panache 20 years ago as they did then........they might not be in the mess they're in now. <_<


#7 Harry P.

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 07:11 AM

I never thought I'd say this...

but that's a really cool...BUICK!!! <_<

Love the wheels, they're perfect on this one.

#8 Peter Lombardo

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 08:20 AM

Hey, I'll throw my two Lincoln's in on this...real nice conversion. The color AND wheels look great on this one. I have to agree, 65 and 66 were great looking GM years, but I also think 62, 63 and 64 were killer design years too. In fact, I would take any real Ford or GM product from 62 to 66 and be a very happy collector.

#9 Tuffy's Garage

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 08:38 AM

Nice Buick

#10 MADmodelDOCTOR

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 08:38 AM

Just beautiful. Great work.

#11 carrucha

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 10:41 AM

Nice Buick. Good work upgrading the chassis.
carrucha

#12 Harold

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 05:28 PM

Thanks, guys. Man, did this project throw me for a loop. I thought, yeah, I already have the stretched frame, so two days, piece of cake. Then, well, OK, three days will do....then four, five.....Something kept cropping up. I mentioned that I'd placed the trans crossmember too far forward, so now instead of two frame halves and a crossmember, I now have to cut a scale 5' section from the back frame half and attach them to the front haf whil keeping everything square. Then I had to reatach the two frame halves together with the trans mount sandwiched between them (again) while keepin everything square. My 45 degree triangle got quite a workout. So, I now have a frame that wants to keep coming apart. Fortunately, after epoxying it to the floorpan it's staying put. This car originally had a tweak to the right front fender that I'd never been able to straighten, and I wasn't about to try heating up a car wearing a six year old paint job. When I removed the engine compartment from the Chevy and lengthened it. I then added strip plastic perpendicular to the engine compartment walls so I could have some solid attachment points to mate with the body. Epoxy and patience (plus a whole day) got the body, interior, frame and floorpan together, and then it was building and installing the 425 nailhead/auto setup from the '66 Riviera. This was by far the easiest part of the build. After the engine was installed and the front wheels epoxied to the spindles, it was a matter of using a drum sander and a Dremel and grinding away enough material from the front of the Chevy core support and the rear of the floorpan to get the bumpers in place. Whew!

#13 tuffone20

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 06:43 PM

WOW! That's a nice Buick!! Looks killer and the work you did to the chassis is outstanding!

#14 plastikfreek

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 06:49 PM

Beautifully done!--------------- :rolleyes: The extra work really paid off.........Love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

#15 James Flowers

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 08:53 PM

I agree very nice . Nice work on the frame swap.

#16 Eshaver

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Posted 01 January 2009 - 03:54 PM

Harold Rick Wagner should give you a plaque stating that "When Better Buick Models are built , Harold Will build them " You go dude !!!!!!!! Ed Shaver