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Tri-Five Buick/Oldsmobiles 54-55-56

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Sir Woosh, Feb 24, 2010.

  1. Bosco1956
    Joined: Sep 21, 2008
    Posts: 545

    Bosco1956
    Member
    from Jokelahoma

    Couple more pics of my 54 No options other than the Super 88
     

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  2. 56oldsDarrin
    Joined: May 9, 2009
    Posts: 396

    56oldsDarrin
    Member

    I swear I saw a repro black floor mat for these cars (whole floor).
    can anyone confirm this?
     
  3. mckustoms
    Joined: Aug 6, 2006
    Posts: 595

    mckustoms
    Member

    No, that was my extra one I had. I bought it first, and then found a running one. So I sold that one.
    Both had radios..But adding an am / fm / cd with remote in the glove box. So the dash will look mostly stock.
    Steve///
     
  4. Sir Woosh
    Joined: Dec 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,273

    Sir Woosh
    Member

    Cool looking ride Bosco! Reminds me. Anyone have a shot of Jay Leno's monster engine Buick. Cool history of him and his Buick too!

    Pics are of the hardtop I bought for $900 in running condition with the C-kit. Was fun driving even like this.........
     

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  5. metalmike13
    Joined: May 13, 2006
    Posts: 355

    metalmike13
    Member
    from Glass City

    Well since we are here.............What are your thoughts on replacing the knee action shocks on the front of the 54 Olds. Get em rebuilt, swap different suspension in place, add shock mounts on the exterior???
     
  6. Stutz
    Joined: Feb 1, 2006
    Posts: 1,770

    Stutz
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    1. Wyoming H.A.M.B. Members

    Knee action shocks suck. I would replace them. what do you mean by front?
     
  7. hotrodj54
    Joined: Jun 1, 2007
    Posts: 602

    hotrodj54
    Member

    you may be able to swap 56 olds upper controll arms maybe? to get rid of the knee acton shocks. if you have them rebuilt they arnt too bad, fusick does them reasonablely cheap..................john
     
  8. thePAkid1931
    Joined: Mar 13, 2007
    Posts: 63

    thePAkid1931
    Member
    from Eastern PA

    Here's my 55 Olds.
     

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  9. metalmike13
    Joined: May 13, 2006
    Posts: 355

    metalmike13
    Member
    from Glass City

    The 54 Olds still has knee action shocks in the front. They didn't change over until 55 with a seperate upper control arm and tube shock. To get em rebuilt its in the neighborhood of $400 plus freight and you need to send cores. Just curious what others with the same situation have done, or if anyone knows of a bolt up swap.
     
  10. 322century
    Joined: Oct 28, 2007
    Posts: 71

    322century
    Member
    from Europe

    Hi (From Europe)
    Here's my 55 Buick Century 2Dh Ht.
    Everyting has been rebuilt or NOS
     

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  11. panheadguy
    Joined: Jan 8, 2005
    Posts: 949

    panheadguy
    Member
    from S.E. WI

    I have a 1954 Olds 4 door we raced in the PanAm race this last October. "The Lucky Taco" unfortuanately we wrecked early and now need a donor car to fix. Any of you guys know where to find one? Engine and trans not needed, front end sheetmetal needed badly!
    Thanks
    Guy
     
  12. panheadguy
    Joined: Jan 8, 2005
    Posts: 949

    panheadguy
    Member
    from S.E. WI

    We wound up mounting a shock on the upper arm and making a bracket for the top mount. Not a probem on a race car but would be ugly as hell on anything else. I was always under the notion that the '54 upper and lowwer arms were one year only. If anyone (like the guy with the Hollander) can confirm I'd appreciate knowing for sure.
    Guy
     
  13. metalmike13
    Joined: May 13, 2006
    Posts: 355

    metalmike13
    Member
    from Glass City

    I have seen people weld a mount to the frame rail, and a stud onto the lower control arm, but i don't know if i really want to go that route.
     
  14. Sir Woosh
    Joined: Dec 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,273

    Sir Woosh
    Member

    Just wondering if the race car has to remain completely stock to the year. Since the tri-five Buick and Olds are so interchangeable, could you put a different nose on the car? You'd have 5 other cars to choose from that would fit.
     
  15. Stutz
    Joined: Feb 1, 2006
    Posts: 1,770

    Stutz
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    1. Wyoming H.A.M.B. Members

    WHICH WOULD BE FUCKING SWEET. A Olds with Buick front Clip. AWESOME!!!
     
  16. DrJ
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 9,422

    DrJ
    Member

    Before scrapping the lever shocks, about the only thing to go out other than a broken or rusted away valve spring are the shaft seals and if they are just dried up and worn and not cracked in two drain them and fill with some automatic transmission stop leak and "conditioner" that might swell up the seals enough to keep the fluid in, and the ATF will work in them after also.
    I put it in the lever shocks on my MGB GT, have for a quarter century so far...
     
  17. Super88
    Joined: Nov 21, 2001
    Posts: 385

    Super88
    Member

    Great looking car thePAkid1931. What length pipes did you use?
     
  18. hotrodjeep
    Joined: Feb 3, 2009
    Posts: 867

    hotrodjeep
    Member
    from Tama, Iowa

    Thought you guys might like to see one that needs a little help.
    Looks pretty complete. I'll get to it again this spring.
    '55 Nighty-Eight. Right?

    Jeff
     

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  19. Stutz
    Joined: Feb 1, 2006
    Posts: 1,770

    Stutz
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    1. Wyoming H.A.M.B. Members

    WTF!!! that sucks cause it still got the rocket in it. but hey I really need that driveline out of that thing. :D
     
  20. metalmike13
    Joined: May 13, 2006
    Posts: 355

    metalmike13
    Member
    from Glass City

    I'll take that drivers quarter panel :)
     
  21. panheadguy
    Joined: Jan 8, 2005
    Posts: 949

    panheadguy
    Member
    from S.E. WI

    Well..We have to remain true to the mill at least which is a 324 Olds. The last year of the original race was 1954 so in order to stay in the class we are in it can't be newer than 1954. Bumobile? Oldsuick? Interesting possibilities but not gonna work for us.

    If any of the followers of this thread have a line on a '54 OLDS donor car for me PM me.
     
  22. Sir Woosh
    Joined: Dec 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,273

    Sir Woosh
    Member

    Sorry for the crappy luck with the Olds racer Panhead. Sure hope things turn around for you. Would like to see it racing again. Any race pics before and after?


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

    Sir Woosh
    Member

    Great looking car PAkid! Join the tri-5 Buick Olds club and show that ride off there too!
     
  24. bentwings
    Joined: Jul 1, 2007
    Posts: 132

    bentwings
    Member

    I have only 1 or maybe 2 pictures remaining of my 54 Olds 2 dr sed S88. All lost in hurricane Hugo. I bought the car in 1960 right after I graduated from HS. They were very popular among us early hotrodders. I think everyone in our car club had a blue and white one at one time or another.

    Mine headed for the dragstrip within a month after I got it. Bone stock I waxed pretty handily by some of the other Olds. I was disappointed but i was determined to make it go. I made my own dual point distributor, dual exhaust with 2 bolt dumps, did some weight jacks on the left front spring, added an overload spring to the right rear, made some traction bars, got some brand new tires, and made some rocker arm shims. This all made a huge difference in performance. I went from mid 18's to low 17's which was as fast as any went with one exception. I walked off with 40 some trophys over the next couple years. You have to remember there were no slicks allowed, and the best tire available then was a Firestone 8.20 x 15. I continued to tune it and got to the 17.0 and 84 mph. At times there were as many as 40-45 cars in the class and you ran back to back without much time inbetween. It was fun back then.

    Sadly Dec of 62 A girl stopped suddenly right in front of me and I rear ended her brand new 63 Galaxie 500 red convert. I had seat belts mounted to a 1/4 x 3 steel bar about 2 feet long under the floor behind the front seat. The impact pulled the floor up about 6 inches. This was enough to allow me to bash the steering wheel just under my chin . It bent over a couple inches. The seat belts were the old cloth to metal style. It pulled them so tight i had a heck of a time releasing them. The hood folded up to the cowl and the motor got knocked back off the mounts and hit the firewall. The car was totaled. The Ford got it's rear end buckled up to the rear wheels. The girl and her driver seat wound up in the back seat and the car got knocked across the street into a telephone pole demolishing the front too.

    Neither of us drew and blood so I guess you can say we walked away from that one.

    I had 3 more 54's all 2d S 88's and one 55 2dr S 88 ht. None were as nice as the first however. The 55 I got for 25 bucks. All it needed was a carb o'haul.
    :D
     
  25. Sir Woosh
    Joined: Dec 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,273

    Sir Woosh
    Member

    Great story Bentwings.

    Your ingenuity is impressive. Real old skool drag racing! I've always been impressed with the 50's Rockets. Wild too thinking of the tires you were racing on. Can't get over the things we got away with. Glad you jumped on the thread. Great contribution!
     
  26. wheelsrus
    Joined: Mar 27, 2007
    Posts: 57

    wheelsrus
    Member
    from nevada

    Here are a few photos I've taken.
     

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  27. 56oldssuper88
    Joined: Mar 3, 2010
    Posts: 213

    56oldssuper88
    Member

    This is my 56 super 88. I paid 1000 bucks for it. The pics were taken right after i bought it.
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  28. 56oldssuper88
    Joined: Mar 3, 2010
    Posts: 213

    56oldssuper88
    Member

    It even had all the chrome trim in the trunk. which was in good shape. Every piece i couldnt believe it.
     
  29. bentwings
    Joined: Jul 1, 2007
    Posts: 132

    bentwings
    Member

    Cool car. One of the guys in our car club back then had a red and white 56 S88 2dr with a 3 spd. We put an Engle cam and kit and an Edelbrock 4 x 2 and one of my home made dual point dist. in it. It was a really fast car in its day. I really miss my blue and white 54 S88 2dr. I paid $400 in 1960 for it. It was spotless then.

    Here is a neat little trick I remember from the old days.

    The '50 Olds had what was called a low lift cam and high lift rocker arms. I can't remember what the ratio was. Anyway the '54 and '55 had a 'high lift cam an low lift rocker arms. So the performance trick was to install the '50 rocker arms ( whole shaft assembly) on the '54 or '55. We also used to shim the rocker shaft up so the lifters were just about contacting the lifter retainers. You have to be careful that they don't really contact them or they will pop out. Makes a mess. The result was a couple mph and a couple tenths at the track. It was very difficult to catch in a tear down even if you knew what to look for. The lifters apprently started pumping up at about 3500 rpm and this stopped that in it's tracks. The top speed also went up considerably. I don't remember what we really got to but the speedo was pretty easy to wrap all the way around.

    One guy had a 3.90 gear and I just couldn't beat him consistantly. He always had that 10 feet at the end. I often got him on the lights and it was a very close race then. I tried everywhere to get a 3.90 gear but they just were not available.
     
  30. 56oldsDarrin
    Joined: May 9, 2009
    Posts: 396

    56oldsDarrin
    Member

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