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1955 Oldsmobile Super 88 holiday build

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by DRH, Apr 7, 2012.

  1. 56oldsDarrin
    Joined: May 9, 2009
    Posts: 396

    56oldsDarrin
    Member

    I dig the dog dishes too... and I had to cut a coil to get mine level (with a 455-turbo 400).
    Cutting another coil and 2 inch blocks in how it sits now.

    I still vote flat black
     
  2. Ray C's son
    Joined: Dec 27, 2009
    Posts: 410

    Ray C's son
    Member

    Man, that was a score. I'd put up with an occasional rub for those rims.

    I didn't think about them not filling up the openings. Thanks for the tip, we'll check it before we buy tires.

    Dustin got the brake pedal and booster mounted last night. I'm sure he'll be posting pics and text. Looks damn good.

    We're still looking for driver quality hood lip trim and fish mouth chrome pieces for the front fenders. If anyone has a piece or two (or all three) let us know.

    Thanks guys,
    Kevin
     
  3. DRH
    Joined: Dec 10, 2011
    Posts: 109

    DRH
    Member

    Okay, more progress. I mounted a power brake booster from an 85 3/4 ton chevy truck and used a set of pedals from a Vega. It is setup for a clutch pedal, which I removed as I am sticking with the hydramatic for now. The great thing about this is if I decide to go with a manual down the road, all I gotta do is bolt the clutch pedal in.

    Heres what it looked like out of the car. I had to move the holes for the pedal up about an inch so the rod from the booster attached to the pedal at the right angle and wouldn't bind.

    [​IMG]

    The booster rod was a little long, which I dealt with later

    [​IMG]

    I removed the ignorant vent box and its worthless cable operated flap mechanism. God what a joke. anyhow, it left me with two holes on either side and I nice piece of sheetmetal in the middle with a bead rolled in it. I measured, drilled my holes and mounted the pedal:

    [​IMG]

    Using a hole saw, I made the hole for the booster rod:

    [​IMG]

    Mounted booster:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The pedal in place, with the through the floor still in place as well. I had to bend it slightly to clear the column better as it was rubbing

    [​IMG]
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    I took the foot pad off the chevy truck pedal and it will get welded on top. Heres what it will look like:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I shortened the brake rod about an inch. There is still plenty of travel and it operates perfectly.

    [​IMG]

    Next, I made a piece to tie the pedal assembly into the dashboard. It had a mount but I had to cut it off as it would not work. I used 1/8" X 1 flat stock and bent it up in a vice:

    [​IMG]

    and here it is all bolted it. Stiffened everything up nicely:

    [​IMG]

    We will make a piece of flat metal to go behind the booster and cover all the holes, as well as adding a drain for the cowl. It will be nice and strong after its all bolted together, and running the brake lines will be a breeze. The access panel for the current master cylinder will be welded down permanently.

    [​IMG]

    Here is my heater box. Anyone have a spare one? There is no fixing this. This is why draining the cowl through the blower box is a bad idea. The heater core was good however.
     
  4. 1954 rocket 98
    Joined: Apr 18, 2011
    Posts: 220

    1954 rocket 98
    Member

    lookin good, like the master cylinder setup. was you just going to run the drums all around or put disks on the front?

    like the aluminum intake idea it make those motors look sweet. here is a couple pics of mine in progress. it will need to be rebuilt but i had to set it on the frame and get a good look at it, i like it!!:D

    i have a heater box if your interested pm me
     

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  5. DRH
    Joined: Dec 10, 2011
    Posts: 109

    DRH
    Member

    [​IMG]

    Finished gutting the interior (dash) and cleared the firewall off. I got the instrument cluster off and cleaned up, as well as the speaker grill/clock bezel on the passenger side. My car came with a clock, except somebody swiped it before I got the car, so I made my own clock delete plate using the center of one of the bent up full size hubcaps that came with the car. I cut it to size, enlarged the hole in the clock bezel a little bit and held it in with two screws I robbed from a spare light switch that way laying around in the garage :D it looks perfect! I love it. Check it out.

    [​IMG]
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    [​IMG]
     
  6. Sir Woosh
    Joined: Dec 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,273

    Sir Woosh
    Member

    Cool clock delete! I was lucky enough to find a 55 Olds with both a clock and radio delete. My other 55 Olds had a clock, but I wasn't creative like you and just put a convex mirror in it's place.

    Keep the ideas coming!

    [​IMG]
     
  7. 1954 rocket 98
    Joined: Apr 18, 2011
    Posts: 220

    1954 rocket 98
    Member

    nice clock delete plate you could almost swear that was a factory set up.
     
  8. DRH
    Joined: Dec 10, 2011
    Posts: 109

    DRH
    Member

    Got the car stripped down to bare metal today. Its very encouraging when you finally get to the transitional period from disassembly to reconstruction. I dug some lead out of the joints that were questionable, and didn't find anything catastrophic, just some rusty spots that need patch panels. Pictured are the rear roof posts and the rust on them, which is a common place for the tri-five Buick/Olds/Pontiacs to rust. A few bends in the brake and patching will be no problem. I also got a very nice heater box and heater core from fellow hamber 1954 rocket 98 (thanks again mike!)

    Sent from my DROID device using the TJJ mobile app
     

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  9. DRH
    Joined: Dec 10, 2011
    Posts: 109

    DRH
    Member

    Sent from my DROID device using the TJJ mobile app
     

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  10. 1954 rocket 98
    Joined: Apr 18, 2011
    Posts: 220

    1954 rocket 98
    Member

    man you have been bustin ass on getting that paint stripped looks good, i need to get busy on mine now. does that rocker panel look like its going to work?
     
  11. DRH
    Joined: Dec 10, 2011
    Posts: 109

    DRH
    Member

    Nahh the rockers will take way too much work so im not gonna use em. Ill get em back to you.

    Sent from my DROID device using the TJJ mobile app
     
  12. DRH
    Joined: Dec 10, 2011
    Posts: 109

    DRH
    Member

    Been slow the last couple weeks cause of the holidays, but I got the dash sanded ready for nice dark red and made pieces for the rear roof pillars. Came out pretty good.

    I am going to do something a little different with the rear wheel openings on this car. I love the swoopy wheel openings found on 50s and early 60s cars, which this car lacks. I can pickup a set of rear wheel openings from a 61 impala bubbletop relatively cheap and I am going to have a go at grafting them onto my quarter panels. I think it will look great.



    Sent from my DROID device using the TJJ mobile app
     

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  13. Sir Woosh
    Joined: Dec 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,273

    Sir Woosh
    Member

    The bead around those quarter openings look pretty close to the ones on the front of your 55 already. Toughest part might be lining up with the roll of the lower fenders, but you'll make it work.

    Happy New Year ! ! ! ! !
     
  14. randy
    Joined: Nov 15, 2003
    Posts: 679

    randy
    Member

    Nice build. I love watching crusty old cars come back to life.

    Those '61 Impala wheel arches are the best swoopy looking arches I've found. I just installed a set on my dad's '59 Cadillac to replace some rusty stock sheet metal.

    [​IMG]

    Keep at it.
     
  15. 1954 rocket 98
    Joined: Apr 18, 2011
    Posts: 220

    1954 rocket 98
    Member

    if you go with the impala wheel openings make sure to get some good before and after pics. those will be sweet!!
     
  16. DRH
    Joined: Dec 10, 2011
    Posts: 109

    DRH
    Member

    Got rid of some more rotten steel on the firewall and made patches to go in. Its amazing how a small rust hole isn't so small once you start digging.

    Sent from my DROID device using the TJJ mobile app
     

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  17. DRH
    Joined: Dec 10, 2011
    Posts: 109

    DRH
    Member

    Got the doors and trunklid gapped, more rotten steel cut out and patch panels made. I am also making one good hood out one, replacing the front edge and passenger back corner (the original hood was rotted at the front lip, and kinked). The second one I have is solid but very bent up ( I think it was walked on). We got floor pans, rocker panels on the way and I got a replacement hood plane and world emblem thanks to a fellow hamber.

    I can't believe how many hours I have in bodywork already and im not even halfway done. Its alot of fun however and everytime I work on it, it gets a little better.

    Sent from my DROID device using the TJJ mobile app
     

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  18. DRH
    Joined: Dec 10, 2011
    Posts: 109

    DRH
    Member

    Cut the front of the original hood off and went through the painstaking process fitting the piece from the second hood, cutting a little at a time until it fit just right. Took me about 4 hours.

    The hoods on these cars were notoriously problematic. The spot welds holding the framework the hinges attached to broke away from the hood itself and they never closed right, chipped the paint on the edges and ultimately kinked. I will show here how I will go about fixing mine for good.



    Sent from my DROID device using the TJJ mobile app
     

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  19. DRH
    Joined: Dec 10, 2011
    Posts: 109

    DRH
    Member

    This is a picture of my grandfather and grandmother in about 1956 or so. He is sitting in his 52 olds 88. He drove oldsmobiles exclusively through the 50s, his first one being a 49. I think about him everytime I work on my car and wish he were here, he would have loved it.

    Sent from my DROID device using the TJJ mobile app
     

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  20. historynw
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 806

    historynw
    Member

    Hey looks like your car now has a happy smile on it. Great project.
     
  21. Great build thread!
    Glad there are other people out there that want to keep the 324cui...
     
  22. Ray C's son
    Joined: Dec 27, 2009
    Posts: 410

    Ray C's son
    Member

    Yes, he would.

    KRH
     
  23. hispanicviking
    Joined: Oct 25, 2008
    Posts: 92

    hispanicviking
    Member

    Nice job on the hood dude keep up the good work !!!!
     
  24. 57J2
    Joined: Dec 13, 2008
    Posts: 142

    57J2
    Member

    That's getting a good hood the hard way!!! Nice work. Keep the updates coming. I'm enjoying your build.
     
  25. Sir Woosh
    Joined: Dec 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,273

    Sir Woosh
    Member

    I had an extra hood for my 55 that was rusted bad in the front too.

    Since I don't have the same talent to rebuild it like seen here, I turned it into fender skirts. Kinda cool to tell people the skirts came off a 55 Olds. Point is, never waste Oldsmobile parts!

    [​IMG]
     
  26. DRH
    Joined: Dec 10, 2011
    Posts: 109

    DRH
    Member

    Hahaha! We'll see when its welded and got paint on it before I accept credit for this so called talent :rolleyes: I appreciate the kind words though. Every patch panel I have made for the car is either the passenger front fender or the remainder of the hood I didn't use. The floor pans and rockers are coming from classic fabrication.

    I pictured the cracks in the hood framework from fatigue. We are going to weld up the cracks, add quite a bit of gusseting, and weld it back into the hood skin to never come back out.

    I got my brand new Eastwood square wave 200 ac/dc directly from Eastwood for 900$ shipped. I got a bottle of argon, welding rod, and a new mask for an additional 160$. My younger brother will be doing the welding. We will be starting tonight. I will let everyone know how the welder performs.

    The last picture is of the earth magnets I pulled out of some old hard drives. These are GREAT for holding sheet metal and making sure they stay in place while being welded. Since I am a ex computer nerd, I had plenty around to destroy. More pics later.

    Sent from my DROID device using the TJJ mobile app
     

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  27. Sir Woosh
    Joined: Dec 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,273

    Sir Woosh
    Member

    I know metal can be fabricated to patch panels on an english wheel or hammered into shape. But it's cool to know it's metal that's the exact same gauge and close shape already.

    I eliminated the bridge between the rear bumper uprights. I used the bridge to get the plugs made to fill in the holes on the uprights.

    That bumper guage metal would have been fun to shape, eh?



    [​IMG]

    I'm really enjoying your build and look forward to each report of progress. Thanks for sharing!
     
  28. DRH
    Joined: Dec 10, 2011
    Posts: 109

    DRH
    Member

    This is all that's left of the front fender. I patched every rust hole in the body with the exception of the rocker panels and floor with this fender...and I didn't use it on the car because it was rotted bad on the bottom corner! The rest got put to good use. We are welding starting in about 30 minutes...soon as my slow ass brother gets here. Im super excited. The days of work spent cutting, shaping, filing, grinding will be put in for good. Pics to come.

    PS. I was looking at your skirts on your 4 door woosh. Those are badass I really like them. Did you run the exhaust pipes down the side and cover them? That really looks good on that car. Did you make the covers on the rockers too?
     

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    Last edited: Jan 25, 2013
  29. Sir Woosh
    Joined: Dec 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,273

    Sir Woosh
    Member

    You used that fender the same way I used the rusted hood. But my frenched lake pipes came from a long metal tube I located.

    Hate to give it away, but the true exhaust still runs back under the car. But if you look hard, you can see the chrome turn down tip dropping out of the forward part of the skirt.

    The chrome trim where the lake tube and skirt meet is the cap trim from an Olds 98 tail light. The trim going off the front of the skirt is from a 1963 Rambler 440H.

    So like you, I try not to waste anything. Yours is my favorite build thread for obvious reasons and I'm always looking forward to see what you come up with next................

    Keep it coming ! ! ! ! !
     
  30. 1954 rocket 98
    Joined: Apr 18, 2011
    Posts: 220

    1954 rocket 98
    Member

    lookin good, your making alot more progress on yours then i am mine. i did manage to get some more paint stripped off the body but its slow going right now.

    finally got over to my parents and brought back a bunch of my parts and found some heater tubes. also found some extra 56 stainless trim i forgot about.

    hows that welder working out for you?
     

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