56 Olds concept car build

Old March 14th, 2019, 07:42 AM
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56 Olds concept car build

Not a cool Corvette based concept, but one I've loved and wanted to build for a very long time. My first car was a 57 Chevy ragtop, and the first dozen cars I owned were 55-7 Chevies. Then while working for an old time customizer, I got the Kustom car bug. I was originally going to take my 56 2 dr sedan, and customize it. Actually got to the point where I had shaved the doors, welded up the side trim to install 55 Pontiac ones, and install 56 Packard tail lights. But when I came across a 55 Olds 98, I put the Chevy back to stock (almost) and customized the Olds. Did a LOT more than side trim and tail lights!
Anyway, since I was always a Chevy fan, and now prefer Olds, I've always wanted to build an Oldsmobile based version of the Nomad wagon. Well, an old friend gave me his 56 Olds project car, and I finally scored a good Nomad roof (I bought a couple years ago, but they were in real bad shape!).
This project is going to take some time, but I thought I'd let the cat out of the bag, and give you a preview. The Photoshopped picture is courtesy of my buddy Jim Laga.



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Old March 14th, 2019, 08:50 AM
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a friend bought a 55 nomad 25 years ago to make into a hot rod, a 350 with a blower and 5 speed, after getting it, it was too nice, he could not hack it up , its bone stock to this day and is so cool, its like a medium green and ivory 2 tone , not turquois
good luck with your project, post pics
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Old March 15th, 2019, 12:35 AM
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Good luck with the project .
When finished , you will have the only 1955 Oldsmobile station wagon on the face of planet Earth.
Oldsmobile did not produce any station wagons in the 1951 thru 1956 era .
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Old March 15th, 2019, 05:46 AM
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I like what you're thinking. Keep us posted on the progress.
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Old March 15th, 2019, 05:51 AM
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AWESOME!
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Old March 15th, 2019, 06:32 PM
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^^^^ Me too. I really like that idea.
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Old March 17th, 2019, 11:32 AM
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Oh my God!! I love it! I mean it, that photoshopped image looks so right. If you can pull it off to look like that it will be magnificent. I'll be following along- Good stuff!!
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Old April 1st, 2019, 06:28 AM
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Busy weekend planning, measuring, cutting and imagining. This is the easy part, it gets harder from here.


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Old April 1st, 2019, 05:13 PM
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looks good. I spy a Pontiac with a irs rear suspension
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Old April 1st, 2019, 07:17 PM
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Good eye, old olds88! Yes, building a 67 GTO for a friend, all Corvette suspension, on a new frame, built with Art Morrison rails. LT1 and 6 speed stick. Also going to do some Vette styling ideas on the body, and interior, as well.
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Old April 1st, 2019, 08:36 PM
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Following along, love this type of build.
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Old April 2nd, 2019, 08:17 AM
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I'm here for the duration...... Tedd
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Old April 2nd, 2019, 09:01 AM
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I think this will be one of the best build threads we have ever had. Do you have a timeframe to complete?
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Old April 2nd, 2019, 09:02 AM
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Following along. Very kool project
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Old April 2nd, 2019, 03:16 PM
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Redoldsman, I gave up (temporarily) building my 47 Chevy coupe Kustoms, to build this Olds. The Chevy would have been much more expensive to finish, for my goal: Driving it to the Leadsled Spectacular, in Salina KS, in 2020. Not sure how "finished" it will be, but I'm trying to make it.
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Old April 2nd, 2019, 08:05 PM
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What engine and trans ?
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Old April 3rd, 2019, 04:33 AM
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OLDSter Ralph, my friend Pete blew up the 324 in it , and had another friend I worked for, Manny, put in a 455 with turbo 400. Plans are to keep them. So many of my old friends had a hand in building/maintaining this car the past 40 years! I'd like to keep as much of their handiwork as possible.
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Old April 3rd, 2019, 05:29 AM
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Its nice that it has Olds power !!!!!!!!!
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Old April 3rd, 2019, 07:44 AM
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Subscribed! What an awesome idea, the photo shopped finished product looks amazing!!
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Old April 3rd, 2019, 06:17 PM
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What are you using for window glass , trim , tailgate ?
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Old April 4th, 2019, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Charlie Jones View Post
What are you using for window glass , trim , tailgate ?
Well, I can't be sure of every little thing yet, but I've chopped a bunch of cars before, so this is the plan. Cut down original windshield. I did my 55 back in 83, and NO ONE knew how to do it back then. Door glass, I'll make new frames out of SS, make templates, and new glass. Quarter glass is laminated, so it can be cut, as long as I don't change the shape/angle of the curved areas. Tailgate: lower will be stock Nomad, perhaps with the handle eliminated (as per a Kustom car). Upper is the biggest issue. The frame is pot metal. I'm researching how to weld pot metal now, but my 55's were welded by a friend back in '83. Not sure if the thinner tailgate can be done. If not, perhaps full fabrication is necessary. Leaning it forward would be an answer with a tempered glass back window on a car, and possible with this wagon, but that would change the angle of the quarter windows, which cannot be 'bent' more. The trim, stainless, can be carefully cut and welded.

Last edited by chopolds; April 4th, 2019 at 10:09 AM.
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Old April 12th, 2019, 09:42 AM
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Well, with the roof temporarily on, it was difficult to figure out where everything was going to line up. SO off it came, and I put the quarter panel tops on. At least this would show me if the placement of the "B" pillars would put things in the right spot. It seems to be going well. But unfortunately, the quarter tops were part of a 2 roof buy I did years ago. The metal was so bad I put off building something with them (originally I thought about doing a 53 Lincoln, as I had 2 of them).
Today, the roof I bought did not have the quarter tops, so I do have to use the old ones. Blasting them showed how really bad they were. I can fix them, but it's a time consuming task.
Anyway, still measuring, and imagining where everything is going to wind up. and what we have to modify.




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Old April 15th, 2019, 05:33 AM
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Chop it!

My serious "Kustom guy" attitude convinced me to chop the car. It's going to add some more serious work, planning and figuring, but what the hell!
Started at the "A" pillar. Marked off and cut 1 1/2 inches out of them. Used some 3/4" tubing to reinforce the cut line, rosette welded it above and below the cuts, which were welded solid. Then made 2 cuts, just above the curve on the roof sides, and spread the roof apart to meet the "A" pillar, and welded them up.
It's a start, and we can't go back now!




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Old April 19th, 2019, 05:21 PM
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After the "A" pillars were welded up, as well as the support piece behind the top of the windshield, I decided to go straight to the "B" pillars, instead of dealing with all that 'almost flat' sheet metal welding. The big decision was whether to keep the Olds 'dip' or eliminate it, like Chevy did on the Nomad. I reinforced the inner structures, with 1/8" plates, make a template, and filled the gap between the bottom of the Nomad's B, and the top of the Olds quarter. I could always change it if I didn't like the dip being there.
Now I think it looks pretty good, probably keep the dip. Besides, I believe the Olds side trim needs it there! Gotta find some 56 "98" trim to go on the car, though.




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Old April 24th, 2019, 06:27 AM
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Going back to the front, I wanted to start tightening it up. Started with welding the front roof support. Had to cut out part of the roof to get to the upper part of it. The lower was out in the open. Then had to weld a patch back in. Also started to reconstruct the rotten Nomad window channels.




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