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Projects '57 Buick Special- Ideas and Inspiration

Discussion in 'Traditional Customs' started by BurnoutBandit, Jan 3, 2016.

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  1. BurnoutBandit
    Joined: Jan 20, 2012
    Posts: 15

    BurnoutBandit
    Member

    Como Estas fellow Hamboners. So Ive got this '57 Buck model 48, I picked it up from a guy in Chehalis, WA roughly 5 years ago. Somebitch was badass right; 364 nailhead ran like a top, two doors, two speeds, louvered hood, and some rosy damn glasses. It was between the Buick and a Plymouth "Gold Duster" with some 17" torque trusts on it, same guy same price. Needless to say the oldie won my heart and my green backs. Fast forward a couple years, been driving the car daily around Portland, turns out it aint quite water tight, fuck it, it doesnt rain that often in PTown. Right? At least the wipers worked great, as long as you were headed downhill. At any rate, I drove her around, alot, coolest dude in town. So I fix misc mechanical bugs; mostly 57 chev parts, easy to find, I figured the whole car was like that. You know they're related, unfortunately, not quite the case. Well it came to the point I moved out of Oregon, I loaded all my worldly possesion in the back seat and strapped my bicycle and snowboard to the trunk like the spoiler on a civic. I was off and sailing. Made it to Idaho with no problems, I meet up with a few old friends, good times. Welp, I pulled up to a buddies house for the night and as I shut the car off I get popped in the rear end. My dood ran into the bike rack with my shit stacked on it and knocked a bigass flake of paint off the deck lid. I was livid. After I got home I started picking at that deck lid and turns out its not the first love tap shes had. Hell turns out the driver rear quarter had been replaced, and it must not have been water tight for awhile, the trunk floor was swiss cheese along with the window sill area on both sail panels and into the rear of the pass compartment, at some point someone sculpted the majority of the trunk sills out of fiberglass filler and wood dowles. Pretty clever really. It snowballed like a mofo. Anyway long story long, it ended up on the back burner for awhile, but the time has come to finally do something about it. So here I am, Im looking to build up a mild custom, no bags, no big wheels, just a classy refined beauty that isnt stock but isnt bastardized either. Im a fan of Bob Palladinos '57 Buick, especially the taillights, and Jack James' flamed jobbie is bad ass but a little too flashy. I suppose im just looking for pics of traditional Bucks and trying to get some ideas. The attached pic is what she looked like before I got carried away. Thanks for reading my bullshit.
     

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  2. Gman0046
    Joined: Jul 24, 2005
    Posts: 6,256

    Gman0046
    Member

    If it were mine, I'd leave as much of the original chrome and stainless as stock as possible and paint it black. Saw a 57 like that at last years NSRA Nats and it looked great.

    gary
     
  3. rsluggoboy
    Joined: Nov 1, 2009
    Posts: 104

    rsluggoboy
    Member
    from SALINAS CA

    Love 57 Buicks
     
  4. BurnoutBandit
    Joined: Jan 20, 2012
    Posts: 15

    BurnoutBandit
    Member

    I fully intend on leaving it as original as possible, stock trim and bumpers, most all that shiney stuff is in great shape. The only thing Id like to change would be maybe the taillights. I think the '56 Packard light wouldnt look too bad. Id also like to keep the white and blue color scheme, it was originally a white car w/blue interior. Im just not sure how I want the white and blue to go back on the car. Im thinking an early sixtiesish custom I suppose, slight rake, and the paint to do most of the talking, maybe some scallops or a metal flake roof, spruce up the motor with a few goodies and enjoy. Nothing really flashy or over the top just good clean customization with some restraint. One of the things that I really like are the 124 louvers punched in the hood, Im not sure who did 'em or when they were done but its one of my favorite parts and Id like to accentuate them a little somehow. The mechanical and fabrication side Ive got covered but trying to figure out paint combos is tough.
     

  5. 'Mo
    Joined: Sep 26, 2007
    Posts: 7,435

    'Mo
    Member

    The molded grille shell on the Palladino Buick was a nice touch. A slightly less extended version would go well with your plans.
     
  6. BurnoutBandit
    Joined: Jan 20, 2012
    Posts: 15

    BurnoutBandit
    Member

    Speaking about the front of Palladinos Buck, what did those cones on the corners of the bumper come from? I could figure out how to make 'em but if I could find a pair it'd be a little easier. Kind of a nice touch with those tucked in there. Though I dont neccesarily want to make the front bumper any bigger. haha.
     
  7. 57JoeFoMoPar
    Joined: Sep 14, 2004
    Posts: 4,677

    57JoeFoMoPar
    Member

    Honestly, as much as I love mid-'50s Buicks, I think the '57 in particular is a very difficult car to customize. One of the biggest issues I personally have with it is the front end. The bumper and grille are wonderful but the bullets protrude quite a ways. Ideally, the headlights and hood would be essentially equidistant to the front of the bumper, but they're not. The hood is set back a ways, and the headlights are only close because of the huge chrome buckets, which gives it a bug-eye look. To make matter worse, when people french in the headlights in the stock location, the headlights looks like torpedos off the front of the car... silly. If you move the headlights back, then the car has a weird underbite look which is also not cool. I've never been able to figure out what the answer is. I'd start with basically a whole new front fender/headlight area to move out not only the light, but the metal around it as well.
     
  8. 'Mo
    Joined: Sep 26, 2007
    Posts: 7,435

    'Mo
    Member

    If you mean in the parking light bezels, try looking at aftermarket chrome bullets. Night Crawlers or MoonEyes can fix you up. http://shop.kustomcarparts.com/Chrome-Bullets_c310.htm
     
  9. BurnoutBandit
    Joined: Jan 20, 2012
    Posts: 15

    BurnoutBandit
    Member

    Nah not the park lights, although I do need one of those. Im talking about the big chrome bullets in the bumper corners. They almost look like '54 or '55 Buick bumper bullets cut down. On the stock '57 its inset with a small tit in the center. And as for the headlights and bumper in relation to the hood and the diving board that is in between, Ive been mulling that over for awhile. Im hoping that I can come up with a paint scheme that kinda down plays the protruberance of the front end. I might also be able to shorten the stock bullets a little as well to bring them back some.
     
  10. taildragger1957
    Joined: Mar 18, 2009
    Posts: 162

    taildragger1957
    Member

    Heres a pic of my old 57 special 4door. It was already bagged in the rear when i got it ( I know you said no bags). But after i got it I frenched the headlights, shaved the handles, hood and trunk emblems, then bodywork it and painted it. I lowered the front and put whitewalls on it. After those few cosmetic changes i drove it... A lot (You may have seen it in the portland area. Im in vancouver) I sold it locally and it eventually got traded to a club brother of mine who redid the interior and added flames.
    Heres it when i had it.
    Pictures-271.jpg
    Pictures-293.jpg
    I can't find any pictures after my buddy did the flames on it, but it looked way better with flames. Hope you can find inspiration somewhere here
     
    michael knight and low budget like this.
  11. taildragger1957
    Joined: Mar 18, 2009
    Posts: 162

    taildragger1957
    Member

    Found a pic after it was flamed. Flames were done by my club brother Jeff Wolf. At this time the car was owned by another member of my club, Phil. Its since been sold to someone overseas.
    8604533602_caeb0582ff_b.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2016
    kadillackid and low budget like this.
  12. BurnoutBandit
    Joined: Jan 20, 2012
    Posts: 15

    BurnoutBandit
    Member

    There you go! Thats what Im looking for, some real world examples of custom Buicks. Nice looking car you had there taildragger. Im spraying a similar satin red on a '54 chev 3100 ive got. Well the headlights dont look quite as buggie with them frenched and the same color as the body, looks like you frenched the markers some too eh? What are those smaller bullets from on the front bumper corners? Is that the same Jeff Wolf that worked at Vancouver Hot Rods awhile back?
     
  13. low budget
    Joined: Nov 15, 2006
    Posts: 5,564

    low budget
    Member
    from Central Ky

    I think the door post would look better a dark color to subdue them more, whether you painted the post and/or top only or the whole car etc.
    Heres another flamed hardtop I ran across
    [​IMG]
     
  14. BurnoutBandit
    Joined: Jan 20, 2012
    Posts: 15

    BurnoutBandit
    Member

    0401000945.jpg Thanks for the pic low budget. Yeah that car is bitchin'. I believe thats Jack James' Buick, it had crossed my mind to do a semi clone of that car but its a little too flashy for my blood. I had also thought briefly about nixing the pillars all together and making it a hard top but ill leave them be, as they made about a third of the post cars compared to the hardtops. Heres a pic from a few years ago while I was still living in Portland. And yes that was my volvo too haha.
     
  15. low budget
    Joined: Nov 15, 2006
    Posts: 5,564

    low budget
    Member
    from Central Ky

    You need to post it to the photo shop thread and let them do some magic like making your post darker and see how you like it.
     
  16. BurnoutBandit
    Joined: Jan 20, 2012
    Posts: 15

    BurnoutBandit
    Member

    Yeah how do I do that? Photoshop is exactly what I need, Im pretty damn computer illiterate so bear with me. Ill be pulling the Buck out of the barn tomorrow and I can get some better pics up. Now that its warmed up above zero I can work on it a little.
     
  17. low budget
    Joined: Nov 15, 2006
    Posts: 5,564

    low budget
    Member
    from Central Ky

    Right click your mouse while the cursor is over the pic, a menu will pop up, then click "copy"
    then go to the photo shop thread, right click again in the reply box, then click "paste"....done
    ..........or post pic the same way you posted your other pics.
    Heres the link.
    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/...otoshop-threads.300531/page-572#post-11328937
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2016
  18. twochops
    Joined: Feb 28, 2006
    Posts: 1,510

    twochops
    Member

    Last edited: Jan 6, 2016
  19. taildragger1957
    Joined: Mar 18, 2009
    Posts: 162

    taildragger1957
    Member

    Thanks. Not sure if Jeff was at vancouver hot rod. He's been all over the place. As far as the marker lights. They're stock. maybe they just look better being under the frenched headlights. lol. The bullets are just the aftermarket bullets you buy online. I think i got mine at a swap meet. (like the ones people use on hubcaps and steering wheels). Those aftermarket bullets thread in from the back. I didn't really feel like pulling the bumper off and taking everything apart. So i just welded the stud to the tip of the existing bullet. Its funny because thats one of the most asked questions about that car. All that work, and a couple of 10 dollar bullets are what everyone wants to know about. Good luck man. I miss mine.
     
  20. BurnoutBandit
    Joined: Jan 20, 2012
    Posts: 15

    BurnoutBandit
    Member

    I had often wondered what theyd look like with a chop. Thanks for the pic Two Chops, shining car youve got there, looking good with the www and wheel covers.
     
  21. BurnoutBandit
    Joined: Jan 20, 2012
    Posts: 15

    BurnoutBandit
    Member

    If it is the same Jeff, I worked with him there for awhile, cool dude. He was building an extended cab '50s chev pickup at the time. I heard that shop closed down though not long after I was "let go". The new manager there, at the time, wanted to make us into reality TV stars and he wanted me as the "bad boy", I scoffed and didnt play along, not long after I got the boot haha. At any rate, thanks for your input taildragger1957, youve givin me some ideas for sure. What did you have for an airbag setup? I know I said no bags but Im not completely opposed to the idea.
     
  22. low budget
    Joined: Nov 15, 2006
    Posts: 5,564

    low budget
    Member
    from Central Ky

    posted your pic over there for ya if you want to chime in and tell em what you like,awesome guys over there.
     
  23. BurnoutBandit
    Joined: Jan 20, 2012
    Posts: 15

    BurnoutBandit
    Member

    Thanks for the help low budget, I started wading through putting it on that thread but I figured Id try and get a better pic today if possible. Needless to say Im a newbie on the ol forums and social media so Ive got a bit of a learning curve to deal with.
     
  24. taildragger1957
    Joined: Mar 18, 2009
    Posts: 162

    taildragger1957
    Member

    Prob not the same Jeff then. Back when vancouver Hotrod was around he was working on a 70 dodge pickup. He worked at Royal Customs for a while. Anyhow. Like i said in my first post. It was already bagged in the rear when i bought it. Never really had any issues with it, so i couldn't tell you much. Just bag cups, tank, compressor and some leaky manual valves. Very basic setup. Most of the stuff I've bagged myself were far more complicated (and always had problems). For the front i just cut the coils. It was 8 years ago so i couldn't tell ya much other than that.
     
  25. BurnoutBandit
    Joined: Jan 20, 2012
    Posts: 15

    BurnoutBandit
    Member

    Thats what Ive run into with bags as well, I like to live by the K.I.S.S. ideology. Keep It Simple Stupid! Bags are fun but can really be a pain, especially when you get down around freezing temps or below. Which the last week or so its warmed up to zero in the day. Anyway, keep up the good work on your customs. Im watching your Plymouth build, sweet car. Ive got a '35 plymouth coupe ive been collecting parts for and hopefully will dive in sometime soon. If you by chance know of any front sheet metal for one Id be stoked. Thanks.
     
  26. low budget
    Joined: Nov 15, 2006
    Posts: 5,564

    low budget
    Member
    from Central Ky

    Heres what themoose came up with, I like it!
    [​IMG]
     
  27. CruZer
    Joined: Jan 24, 2003
    Posts: 1,913

    CruZer
    Member

    BillYetto57Buick.jpg Here's my friend,Bill's 38K mile 57. All he had to do was a new interior and some paint work. BillYetto57Buick.jpg
     

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  28. BurnoutBandit
    Joined: Jan 20, 2012
    Posts: 15

    BurnoutBandit
    Member

    Wow, thanks for the help lowbudget. That aint a bad looking car, photoshop is magic.
     
  29. alexhernesten
    Joined: Aug 17, 2014
    Posts: 2

    alexhernesten

    Nice car! Following this build.

    Have a Buick 57 Century 2dr ht that I've been working on for a while. In the end I decided to do a Jack James clone. Should be pretty wild, and a bit too much but then again, I have an urge to see it come to life. Hopefully painting early summer this year. With enamel paint and everything.

    It's right tho that the Buick is hard to customise. I like the boomerang tail light on the Bailon built one so that could be a way of getting rid of the tail lights or changing it up in a way that has not been done before.

    I like that you're keeping the louvers and if you want flames but not too much Jim Jackson's Chevy 56 could be a cool inspiration with small flames above the louvers:

    [​IMG]
     
  30. kenji
    Joined: Jul 17, 2009
    Posts: 65

    kenji
    Member

    I've seen '57 Buick grilles used in '57 Chevies. H-m-m-m-m...
    Try this: a '57 Chevy bumper on the '57 Buick. Kind of a "rolled pan" look up front.
     

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