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I went and bought a POS '56 Old's...

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by DirtyThirty, Nov 12, 2008.

  1. DirtyThirty
    Joined: Mar 8, 2007
    Posts: 2,396

    from nowhere...

    And now I love it, because though it has rust everywhere it could possibly rust, and on some places that I'm actually quite certain it can't!, its a two-door hardtop, and it was cheap... And in my book, a pile of iron oxide that used to be a two-door hard top still beats a flawless four door...
    I am way out of my element here...
    I don't know SHEITE about old G.M. stuff.

    I searched the forum for patch/replacement panels sourches but came up dry, in fact the whole internet seems devoid of early Old's sheet metal...
    Am I stuck trying to make stuff?
    It seems like nothing is available before the 60's...

    I need wheel tubs, rockers, lower quarter patches...all kinds of crap.
    These things are gorgeous, why such little interest in them?

    I have recently begun trying to learn Old's engine/driveline interchangeability, as well, thanks to here...

    I thought Ford was incomprehensible....

    Well...any help would be appreciated.
  2. UnIOnViLLEHauNT
    Joined: Jun 22, 2004
    Posts: 4,824


    My brotha! Post some pics! I made all my own patches on my 55 hardtop, but it was a 4 door. :D I loved that car, put a SBC in it after 2 rockets went south, fast. 1 in and one purchased that locked up right before install, beat.

    Anywho, I heard Fusick or some such spelling has some goodies for these cars, mine was already in primer when I heard that rumor.

    Is it a factory 4 bbl motor? Those have the #10 heads or something, bigger valves I think. Great cars!
  3. Pontiacres Ranch
    Joined: Jan 26, 2008
    Posts: 649

    Pontiacres Ranch

    Just my experience with my 56 talking here, but I went to a Pontiac place to get "Pontiac" Floor pans for my wagon. What I got was a flat piece of sheet metal with 4 lines pressed in it, totally customize to fit. I ended up going to Danchuk and getting Tri Five Chevy Pans. Less work to make them fit. Although my wagon has 55 Chevy Quarters, roof, Glass, & probably similar doors, the floor, cowl, and frame mounts are totally different. The rear pans were a direct swap, the front pans were a bit shallow compared to the Pontiac. I had to put a jack under the brace and raise it to the pan when we welded them. other than that the drive shaft tunnel and rocker side were very close. Ive had to buy and modify other parts from Danchuk for my wagon, much easier than finding good used. Id bet that that would be the way to go for wheel houses and inner structure, they make every brace & patch panel to build a 55-7 Chevy from scratch. The quality of their parts is high also. Good luck!
  4. DirtyThirty
    Joined: Mar 8, 2007
    Posts: 2,396

    from nowhere...

    Yeah man! they are friggin' tits!
    The more I stare at it, the nicer it seems to get...just a really nice, curvy elegant '56 Chevy, sort of.
    Yeah, I'm one of those "two-door snobs"...:D
    I can't help it, its my fathers teaching.
    I'll never be able to shake it.
    I here you loud and clear on the SBC thing, though I'm SURE I will be bombarded with hate-posts about it...I can't rule it out, because even if you make the sacrifice from jump, and stay Old's, spend the extra time, cash ( looks like lots of that! ) your still out in the cold, as far as parts availability on the road, and I intend to drive it EVERYWHERE...
    and for a long time, too, because its gonna have to see me through another Model A build, which is going to be ACHINGLY slow.

    It IS the 4bbl 324, with what I understand are the "good" heads.
    Just learning here...all new to me.

    It runs, but its tired...REAL tired...its noisy, the valvetrain isn't getting any oil, and it smokes like a chimney out the road draft tube...though not from the exhaust? I guess theres not much smoke left to go out the exhaust when its all going past the rings!:D

    I kind of figured I'd be making a lot of my own panels...the former owners are , um, lets say..."inventive"...soup cans, gutters, and, of course the requisite cardboard/newspaper....
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2008

  5. DirtyThirty
    Joined: Mar 8, 2007
    Posts: 2,396

    from nowhere...

    I was thinking that the Chevy stuff was probably workable, too, close...
    in some cases, such as the rockers, and door skins,I have been told they are the same.
  6. DirtyThirty
    Joined: Mar 8, 2007
    Posts: 2,396

    from nowhere...

    Here she is, in all her polyester/and newspaper glory...
    Its actually not as bad as I make it sound...haha... has GREAT bumpers at least...:rolleyes:

  7. DirtyThirty
    Joined: Mar 8, 2007
    Posts: 2,396

    from nowhere...

  8. Angry Frenchman
    Joined: Feb 12, 2006
    Posts: 1,755

    Angry Frenchman

    how do you beat that! I'd rock that ride all the way to hells gate. Great find man
  9. Topless Ford
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 560

    Topless Ford

    I am pretty sure I know where a shell is. I believe it has the pedals in it for a manual. oh and one good piece of chrome.:D Next time I am up that way I'll snap a pic.
  10. great score...the 56 olds has such nice lines...the four door hardtops are nice the wheels off of that sucker
  11. DirtyThirty
    Joined: Mar 8, 2007
    Posts: 2,396

    from nowhere...

    Manual pedals, you say!?!?:D
    Hmmm...more fuel for the fire...

    keep me posted on that, thanks!
  12. 55olds88
    Joined: Jul 23, 2001
    Posts: 2,384


    Looks like a decent start in that part of the country, the 54-6's are all on the same basic body shell, I know there is a mob around doing floors and sills but can't for the life of me remember who....

    Tanson enterprises

    all do parts and there are others just not at the top of the mind at the moment, if in a mad fit of rage you pull that 56 engine let me know :)
  13. damn man you painted a picture like the car was a festering pile of dog crap , looks good from here .. nice score ..
  14. DirtyThirty
    Joined: Mar 8, 2007
    Posts: 2,396

    from nowhere...

    Ha! yeah...I've seen worse, my '54 Ford was worse, AND a post car, AND didn't run, when I bought it 5 years ago, and I paid the same for this...

    I can tell you, though, its worse than the pics make it look.
    I used to work on Dump trailers, and Tri-axles, but this sheet metal welding/shaping scares me! I need to learn finesse...not really necessary when the lightest thing your welding is, like, 1/4" plate!

    Oh, well...thats how ya' learn!
  15. Shit looks good to me. I love tri year Olds and Buicks better than Chevys and hope to own one someday. What a great start for a killer Kustom
  16. Tindall
    Joined: Jun 7, 2007
    Posts: 399


    looks cool, if u decide to rip that motor out and put a chevy in it let me know, i have plans for a rocket olds...
  17. bobwop
    Joined: Jan 13, 2008
    Posts: 6,099


    I am a big BOP fan and have a couple of good yards that have taken care of my needs very thoroughly. I know of a nice 56. I have a strong 324 with adaptor and 200R4 behind it. Keep looking, the GM Gentlemen will come out of the woodwork.

    Great find, congrats.
  18. zman
    Joined: Apr 2, 2001
    Posts: 16,594

    from Garner, NC

    Love those things, looks like you have a decent one. Keep it Rocket powered. There's lots of help to be had here for them...
  19. 3x2rocket
    Joined: May 1, 2007
    Posts: 248


    That car is a score! I dare you to build that rocket engine with tripower on it!

    Parts won't be as hard as you think, I know of a few yards here in the west that'll likely take care of your body needs, just pm me and I'll dig up the numbers and if you accept the dare above all engine parts are readily available.
  20. slammed1
    Joined: Dec 5, 2007
    Posts: 192


    Like Pontiacres Ranch said already,you would be surprised just how much chevrolet parts you can use on the car for patch panels. That is if you can find a similar year chevy that can provide the parts you need.
  21. DirtyThirty
    Joined: Mar 8, 2007
    Posts: 2,396

    from nowhere...

    I will probably take you up on that!
    I see mail in your future...There ain't much out this side of the continent...not much of anything good, anyway.

    A current possibility is to put the 30,000 mile 394 we have in it, with dual quads!
    But, I have to open up the little Rocket it currently sports, first, and see what it looks like inside. Maybe its not still runs, at least!

    Thats a start...
  22. Gas Giant
    Joined: May 14, 2008
    Posts: 402

    Gas Giant

    These guys have floors pans and rockers and other odds and ends. Haven't used them yet but I am going to when I get around to working on my 56 Buick.

    Killer Olds man! I'll be on the lookout for one in about a year or so.
  23. zman
    Joined: Apr 2, 2001
    Posts: 16,594

    from Garner, NC

    If it still runs do a compression test and a leakdown test. If it is at all decent and not leaking oil everywhere run the damn thing. Upgrade the ignition and maybe induction and have fun with it.
  24. ratt7
    Joined: Sep 23, 2005
    Posts: 362


    Nice car, well worth the effort to bring this set of wheels along.
  25. gnarlytyler
    Joined: Feb 2, 2007
    Posts: 1,004


    Very nice...... hardtops are cool!
  26. Nick
    Joined: Dec 10, 2001
    Posts: 401


    The stuff from classic fabricaion is top notch. I purchased their rockers for my 60 Caddy after the ones from the Cadillac only place didnt fit at all. They fit perfectly and are made out of real cold rolled steel. I imagine their floor pans and other parts are of equal qualit.
  27. DirtyThirty
    Joined: Mar 8, 2007
    Posts: 2,396

    from nowhere...

    That's on the agenda for the weekend, as well as the same, including a visual inspection for the 394.
    I have the basics figured for putting the 394 in front of the '56 trans, it seems like the balance issue is the only major problem. I have a good, and friendly machinist, so...we shall see.

    But, if the 324 isn't too beat, its the simpler way to go...
    I'm not sure yet how the crank looks, if there are any bearings left, if it even had oil pressure! This thing has been sitting for quite a while...
    I know that no oil is reaching the top end. However, plenty of it seems to be getting burned, and going into the crankcase!:D
    I imagine comp/leakdown results are going to be dismal, but, if the rest of the motor is clean inside, the block doesn't need any major machine work, and the crank is still good....Well...I have my fingers crossed...

    I am going to check out that link for classifabrication now.
    I am not sure, but that might be the one place I did find stuff...

    Thanks guys!

    Now...who has a nice, clean fourdoor that they wanna sell, so I can I can cut it to ribbons!
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2008
  28. Kripfink
    Joined: Sep 30, 2008
    Posts: 2,040

    Member Emeritus

    No way, no how is that a POS! I looked up POS in the dictionary, and there absolutely wasn't a picture of your car next to the definition:D
    That looks like a nice score to me. So what colour flake you going with?:D
    Good luck,
  29. belair
    Joined: Jul 10, 2006
    Posts: 8,717


    Good buy-I have a 55 2 door sedan and LOVE it. Best driving car I have owned. The 324 hydro is a blast. I think the 56 is a better loking car than the 55-you hit a home run. Not many (any) Chevy parts will work for you, Buick and Caddy are your interchange cars. Good luck with the Olds.
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2008
  30. droplord49
    Joined: Jan 12, 2004
    Posts: 1,680

    from Bryan, Tx

    Welcome to the Olds club, they are great cars. My 55 is my first, I have had it for a bout 5 years now and hope to own a few more in the future.

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