Body Restoration Begins

Old September 18th, 2009, 03:54 PM
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Body & Engine Rebuild Begins - '65 Cutlass

After owning this 65' convertible since 1985, I'm finally having a proper body restoration done.

The 455 is being trued up at the machine shop, and will soon be on the engine stand to start the build up.
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Old September 18th, 2009, 04:25 PM
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Keep us posted of your progress

Bye the bye your shop looks way to clean
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Old September 18th, 2009, 04:35 PM
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Like they say gotta start somewhere sometime. Good luck with the build and keep us posted. Good motivator for the rest of us. Might even wake Jamsbo up from his nap (he drools on the keyboard).
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Old September 18th, 2009, 05:26 PM
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Very nice...Would like to see some more pics of her.
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Old September 18th, 2009, 07:02 PM
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Keep us informed of the progress. If you plan on making this an ongoing thing with updates a better fit will be the project section. If you want one of the mods to move it for you let us know.
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Old September 18th, 2009, 07:10 PM
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Makes sense to me... lets move it.
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Old September 18th, 2009, 07:14 PM
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done.........
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Old September 18th, 2009, 07:21 PM
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BTW... dig your '66... I lived in the DFW area for 23 years... in fact, I bought my '65 from a professor at North Texas State. Now the Cutlass is at home in Indiana.
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Old September 18th, 2009, 08:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Mongoose View Post
BTW... dig your '66... I lived in the DFW area for 23 years... in fact, I bought my '65 from a professor at North Texas State. Now the Cutlass is at home in Indiana.
Thanks on the 66...What moved you up there?
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Old September 19th, 2009, 03:55 AM
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A woman?
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Old September 19th, 2009, 04:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Mongoose View Post
A woman?
Well there goes the neighborhood.
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Old September 19th, 2009, 10:53 AM
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Fortunately she's almost as excited about the car as I am. Now she can't understand me getting excited about a new stainless steel front brake line arriving in the mail... but if she truely understood that... that would be scary... and probably just wrong.
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Old September 20th, 2009, 05:44 AM
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Yes another '65. I washed mine yesterday she is like a cat,
HATES WATER! But I had to clean the top.
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Old September 20th, 2009, 05:56 AM
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White is a most beautiful color. Mine is a Lt. Blue/Lt. Blue interior. I believe the paint color is called Lucerne... but that's thinking back to the late 80's when I researched it.
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Old September 20th, 2009, 06:14 PM
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Here's a few more pix of the body work in progress...
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Old September 21st, 2009, 10:34 AM
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Here's a couple pix as the car looked before I sent it off to the body shop. It was painted in '87 as a wedding present from my dad. It was painted by Maaco in an '86 Trans Am "Electric" Blue. It was fine at the time, but now it's going to have it done right!

BTW... it's going back to the original Lt. Blue (Lucerne Mist).
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Old September 24th, 2009, 01:34 PM
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And he are a couple more shots I had my friend dig out while the car was stored at his house for 4 years.
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Old September 24th, 2009, 08:23 PM
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looks like a great car to start withlooks like you have the bodywork going your way and am looking forward to seeing more pics of progress
keep up the great work!
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Old September 25th, 2009, 03:20 AM
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Thanks! Yes, the car had been a Texas car through 2007, and has been in my garage and on the road only a few times since I moved it here to Indiana. Our friend who is doing the body work is an excellent body man (does it for a living)... as well as an Olds fanatic. He has a beautiful 70 442 W-30. He is very pleased with how little rust or major body work is needed on the car. It's was still pretty wavy, but he's been doing a lot of work and it's looking great!

I'll handle the mechanicals myself, along with the help of a few friends who keep asking when its time to start putting things together. Nothing like someone helping just because they think its fun!

I decided to tear the motor completely down after I discovered last fall that 3 lobes were damaged on the cam. I had been working on getting it running good again after bringing it up from storage at my friends house in TX. I couldn't get one particular tick out of the valvetrain (Crane roller rockers) after several attempts to work it out. We also found metal shavings on the magnetic drain plug on each of the 3 fill/run/drain oil changes. My eye finally caught that the #2 exhaust rocker arm sat lower than the rest of the valvetrain (that's when "uh oh" really kicked in). So I pulled the intake, etc, and that's when I confirmed that not 1, but 3 of the lobes were bad. #2 was actually worn ~ 0.150".

It appears the cause was excessive wear at the cam thrust surface on the front of the block, which made the cam ride too far back in the block. This now also explains why the distributor had been so hard to remove for the last several years (obviously the '65 had been driven very little).

Block and reciprocating assembly is supposed to be ready to pick up from the machine shop this week, and there are boxes of new parts (including Edelbrock heads to replace my ported "C" heads) stacked in the garage.

It's getting too late in the year to expect to have it on the road before winter sets in, so I'll be able to take my time through the winter getting it all put back together.

BTW... for you '68 lovers... my first car was a '68 442 turnpike cruiser. And I grew up riding in my dad's '73 Toronado, and it was one of the cars I learned to drive in. My dad also had a '65 Cutlass 4-door that I was too young to really remember riding in, except for when a large pine tree fell across the road in front of us and another car going the other way, and trying to avoid it we both jumped over the tree and side swiped each other (and flattened all 4 tires). He also had a late 70's 98, and a new '62 Jetfire with the turbo 215 and water injection that he kept for about a year.

So now that I think about it, it's no wonder I ended up being an Olds man.

Last edited by Mongoose; September 26th, 2009 at 04:38 AM.
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Old September 25th, 2009, 10:33 PM
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What model is your 1965?
I am in process of buying a 1965 Jetstar 88 next spring. I get to store it in my Garage over the winter and tinker with it.. I can't wait to get it into my Garage. (I am buying it from a friend)
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Old September 26th, 2009, 04:26 AM
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Cutlass.
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Old September 30th, 2009, 10:48 AM
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I've been trying hard not to tear into mine right now. Its not its turn
But its day will come!
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Old October 18th, 2009, 06:20 PM
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Engine Rebuild Begins

The body shop work continues....

But in the meantime, I finally got started on putting the 455 back together.
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Old October 18th, 2009, 06:27 PM
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Engine Rebuild Begins

Ok... this time it worked. I gotta hit all the right buttons!
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Last edited by Mongoose; October 18th, 2009 at 06:34 PM.
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Old October 18th, 2009, 06:29 PM
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Engine Rebuild Begins

More pix...
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Last edited by Mongoose; October 18th, 2009 at 06:34 PM.
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Old October 18th, 2009, 06:31 PM
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Engine Rebuild Begins

Ok... I know it's not time to put the heads on it yet... but I've wanted a set of these for at least 10 years... and my buddy helping me today really wanted to see what they'll look like on the motor...
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Last edited by Mongoose; October 18th, 2009 at 06:34 PM.
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Old October 18th, 2009, 06:40 PM
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Engine Rebuild Begins

We got a decent 3 or 4 hours in today... made good progress. And ate steak for lunch in between. Surprised we could stay awake!

Had to call it a day when 1) we decided that we need an additional 0.040" shim behind the crank timing gear to align it with the cam gear, and 2) I found that one of the two windage tray bracket had broken in two. Didn't notice the damage when I removed it, but then again I didn't look it over that closely either. Hopefully a friend can weld the bracket back together so I don't have to buy another one.
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Old October 19th, 2009, 12:47 PM
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Cool cars u guys, I just started on my 2 door 1966 Olds Delta 88, I'm doing a frame off resto, Only mods will be 4 wheel disc brake set up, Chrome Side Trim is coming off to be replaced only with the Starfire wheel well trim and a 400 L69 intake/carbs on the 425, should be a cool unit once completed. I like to paint the car a Black Blue Pearl and paint the engine the (Bronze Copper - Not sure yet tho)
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Old November 5th, 2009, 01:32 PM
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While the body is in the body shop, I'm going to have the chrome re-done and the stainless polished.

What should my expectations be for the sections of the tail panel that have the satin finish? Can a chrome shop reproduce the chrome finish? Or these sections have to be painted?
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Old November 5th, 2009, 01:47 PM
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I'm also doing a 65 cutlass. Mine has a lot more rust though. Ihave to replace the frame.
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Old November 7th, 2009, 05:30 AM
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nice thread...

Thanks for posting really enjoying your progress!!!
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Old November 12th, 2009, 12:16 PM
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Trunk's painted! whoo-hoo. Ok... I understand anyone else but me, including my wife, would not be excited. But this means progress is being made. And it's just cool to see a trunk that isn't filled with swiss cheese!
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Old November 24th, 2009, 05:18 AM
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Motor is getting closer!

Heads are finally on...

Bottom end is buttoned up...
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Old November 24th, 2009, 07:30 AM
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Trunk turned out great. Engine build looks good too. What pistons did you use and what is your expected compression?
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Old November 24th, 2009, 06:33 PM
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Thanks!

Pistons are Arias. With a .040 over bore, the 72cc Edelbrock combustion chambers, and 0.051" thick steel head gaskets, compression should be about 10.25:1.

Last edited by Mongoose; November 25th, 2009 at 03:21 AM.
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Old November 24th, 2009, 07:07 PM
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Looking good....The trunk looks great.

Out of curiosity what cam did you end up with?
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Old November 25th, 2009, 03:16 AM
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I went with a Mondello MPV-1-2 (Engle cam with solid lifters) that specs as:

Lift: 0.557int/0.574exh
Duration: 278/286
Duration @ .050: 244/252
Lobe Separation: 110
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Old November 25th, 2009, 04:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Mongoose View Post
Motor is getting closer!

Heads are finally on...

Bottom end is buttoned up...
I was sitting with my laptop looking at these 4 photo's...wife comes up,looks over my shoulder and say's, "what ya' looking at "? I replied..." at this mechanical work of art...it's a thing of pure beauty like the Mona Lisa!" She rolled her eyes,and turned away saying" you must be having a reaction to your flu shot". They just don't get it!
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Old November 25th, 2009, 05:43 AM
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HA! Thanks Dude.

My wife is a "car gal"... she can't wait for the car to be ready to drive this Spring... but there are many times she "doesn't get it".

I'll call her out in the garage... she'll look things over... look at me with that look of "yeah?"... I tell her this is like getting that matching purse AND earrings to go with her new shoes. THEN the light bulb comes on!

Then after a few more moments of silence of staring at 500lbs of metal on the engine stand, she asks me if I "need a moment".

"YES!"
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Old November 25th, 2009, 05:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Mongoose View Post
HA! Thanks Dude.

My wife is a "car gal"... she can't wait for the car to be ready to drive this Spring... but there are many times she "doesn't get it".

I'll call her out in the garage... she'll look things over... look at me with that look of "yeah?"... I tell her this is like getting that matching purse AND earrings to go with her new shoes. THEN the light bulb comes on!

Then after a few more moments of silence of staring at 500lbs of metal on the engine stand, she asks me if I "need a moment".

"YES!"
Thats great, she has a sense of humor as well
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