Tear Down

Old May 20th, 2014, 01:35 PM
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Tear Down

I had some free time the last few days so I started the tear down of the 66. As I was going through it I have a few questions.

What looks like undercoating on the rear panel, is that factory? Also the window mechanism bolts are covered in a very hard putty (?) that is hard as stone. I'm assuming that's factory but thought I'd ask. Anyone know why it's there to begin with?
There are many things that I know are not factory on this so there will be many questions for those in the know.
I also took off all the molding, windshield trim, etc. I have a question on the corner piece at the top of the windshield. Should it be full of what looks like plumbers putty? It's still soft is why I ask.
Questions, comments and help are greatly appreciated on this thread. It will be a long and slow process I'm sure. On a good note my former boss and body man who now owns a local speed shop has offered to help with the body and paint. Can't beat that deal.
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Old May 20th, 2014, 01:38 PM
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Few more:
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Old May 20th, 2014, 01:52 PM
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The black stuff looks factory, is it on both sides? The other material that's hard as rock? IDK - never seen that. Check for fingerprints in it and have it sent to the local crime lab

Methinks your new man cave is soon going to fill up with parts as you continue the tear down.

Plumbers putty on the upper corner sash? Sounds like someone had a leak and found a creative way to fill the void. It's a great idea actually - that stuff resists water and lasts a very long time.
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Old May 20th, 2014, 04:23 PM
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There is a gap filler type material I remember from long long ago. Made for automotive use and it was like clay and never permanently hardened. Used to get it at napa. Can't remember what it was called. Im guessing seam sealer of its day?


I use butyl ribbon on a couple areas of the hurst where I removed seam sealer / filler in the t top area. I like the ribbon.
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Old May 20th, 2014, 04:41 PM
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Looks like it won't take much to get it nice!
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Old May 20th, 2014, 04:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Boldsmobile View Post
There is a gap filler type material I remember from long long ago. Made for automotive use and it was like clay and never permanently hardened. Used to get it at napa. Can't remember what it was called. Im guessing seam sealer of its day?
Are you thinking of the 'rope' sealer like that used around the evaporator box?

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Old May 20th, 2014, 04:49 PM
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The tar is normal in the door panels, it held the insulation sheet in place. The hard stuff might be panel bond like whats between the sheet metal and the hood frame. The soft stuff is dum dum, or strip caulk, it probably had some wind noise or a whistle.
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Old May 20th, 2014, 07:53 PM
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Allan I'll have to take a picture of the back of the panel. I forget if it had the undercoat or not. It did have a US Steel logo and script on the back, thought that was cool.
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Old May 20th, 2014, 08:06 PM
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Is this the proposed recipient of the engine you built?
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Old May 20th, 2014, 09:18 PM
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This is it
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Old May 21st, 2014, 05:52 AM
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This is a 1964 post car. It looks like there's a red primer stuff, with this black sprayed over it. The black is hard and kinda crispy, not quite the same feeling as undercoating. I'm guessing its to seal moisture out of the passenger compartment, but that's just a guess. John

Also I did find one bolt that had the hard putty over it in this area.

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Old May 21st, 2014, 06:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Boldsmobile View Post
There is a gap filler type material I remember from long long ago. Made for automotive use and it was like clay and never permanently hardened. Used to get it at napa. Can't remember what it was called. Im guessing seam sealer of its day?


I use butyl ribbon on a couple areas of the hurst where I removed seam sealer / filler in the t top area. I like the ribbon.
The stuff they used in the fifties was called dumb dumb (sound like the same stuff), a putty like substance that you could use to fill some major holes and the stuff would hold for years and take paint as well.I think it can still be bought today....Tedd
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Old May 21st, 2014, 07:43 AM
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John/2blu442 it does look like that so I'll call it factory. It's also in some spots on the floor and in the wells under the convertible top cylinders. I going to assume to protect the body should a cylinder leak. Each of the wells has a drain hole also. Since mine wasn't hooked up the cylinders swung freely and banged around so the person who took this apart earlier put a thick insulation type material in the well surrounding the cylinder to quiet the banging. Heavy sigh. You would think since he went to all of the trouble to get this far he would have just removed the cylinders but whatever. I'll be getting a whole new set up so I can finally have a power top.

The putty thing is still perplexing. The window mount stuff is hard as a rock and was definitely put in with human hands, you can see the finger indents. Why it's surrounding the adjustment bolts is the mystery. Doesn't seem to serve any useful purpose (dunsel). Like maybe protecting something. I guess it's the Generals better idea somehow.
The putty in the window corner has to be newer stuff because it's still soft. There is also a piece of what looks like weather stripping under the main piece that runs left to right along the top of the window. I have to wonder if that's factory also? I will have to drill those screws out to get that off as the heads are gone. I should have kept a collection of the BS and hackery I found in this car. It's amazing what some people call a "Professional Restoration". I knew it wasn't perfect when I got it ten years ago but some of this definitely come under the "WTF" category. And so it goes!
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Old May 21st, 2014, 12:07 PM
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Got picks of the back of the plate, it's not coated. Notice the decal, interesting. Also a little closer detail of the window adjustments and the putty material. I also got to see what the real Target Red looked like after removing this stuff. It's much nicer than the faded paint I have now. The car had also been repainted at some time in the past but a real poor job overall. The camera washes the color out too much and you can't see the difference so no pics. It's a deeper blood red which I prefer. I saved some floor space by putting stuff in the rafters.
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Old May 21st, 2014, 02:24 PM
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Originally Posted by TripDeuces View Post
........ I saved some floor space by putting stuff in the rafters.
I think this is how hoarding starts.
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Old May 21st, 2014, 04:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Allan R View Post
I think this is how hoarding starts.
I can attest to that. All I really needed was a r/r qrt and package tray metal
when I came across a 69 S with no/engine/trans for $300 trimmed exactly as the 69 442. Buckets, auto, air, parchment interior, etc...

Trip, I am subscribed. Gotta Love those red 66 convertibles!
Great luck with it.

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Old May 24th, 2014, 01:30 PM
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Thanks tru-blue 442.
Little more today. Took the chrome off the top of the windshield. Surprising how nice it is under there, like new. Once again, think that putty and weather strip is factory?
Also removed the cowl panel and the wiper motor and assembly. Can anyone show me what screws are proper for holding the cowl panel down? The ones that were in there are not correct. I know there is a leak in the window somewhere because the passenger floor gets wet but it can't be much bigger than a pinhole. There are a few rust spots but not bad overall. Will need a new rear view mirror glass too.
Also does anyone make a better screen that comes under the cowl? I'm going to need a new one as mine is pretty beat.
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Old May 24th, 2014, 02:09 PM
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If the rest of the car is also in that shape you have one of the rarest of all non rusty cars I've ever seen.
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Old June 4th, 2014, 09:03 PM
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Allan I agree. I remember when I bought it I took it to my friends garage and put it on the lift. We were both just like 'whoa'. This car is clean but unfortunately a hack had it before me so I'm fixing that as I go along.
Little more stuff this week. Had my buddy over to remove the hood and the top. My plan is to get rid of that hood spike and weld up the holes. Damn thing just leaked anyway and that has got to go! Maybe tomorrow I tear the vinyl off the top frame and see how my header bow looks.
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Old June 5th, 2014, 04:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Allan R View Post
If the rest of the car is also in that shape you have one of the rarest of all non rusty cars I've ever seen.
The condition of the metal looks amazing from the pics!....lucky guy
I too am subscribed.....good luck
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Old June 5th, 2014, 05:10 AM
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Trip, apologies for going off topic, curious why Alex for your avatar? Any interesting story or similarity? Awesome flik....
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Old June 5th, 2014, 07:57 AM
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Boese1978, no real reason. I too love the movie and that creepy pic. No I look nothing like Alex. I'm a child of the 60's and 70's so anything from that era I'm drawn to.
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Old June 5th, 2014, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by TripDeuces View Post
I'm a child of the 60's and 70's so anything from that era I'm drawn to.
Clockwork Orange was a bit dark for my tastes when it came out.....ahh, so you're still a baby in age comparisons...

Live long and Prosper

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Old June 5th, 2014, 12:23 PM
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Yeah I'm a Star Trek geek too.
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Old June 5th, 2014, 12:59 PM
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Originally Posted by TripDeuces View Post
Yeah I'm a Star Trek geek too.
Me too. I even have a Star Trek Pinball Machine! Sorry Trip, I thought that was you in the pic..........
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Old June 6th, 2014, 01:29 PM
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The wax like stuff may be something like a "Ziebart" coating that was sprayed all over interiors of doors, under fenders etc. to help with rust prevention. Remember seeing a lot of that up in Michigan when growing up in 50s and 60s. As you know, untreated and uncared for cars lasted about 5 years (or less) in michigan and began dying a rusty death.
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Old June 12th, 2014, 02:04 PM
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Took the top off the frame today documenting everything with pics. Looks like a need a new header bow for the front. Bah!
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Old June 12th, 2014, 02:43 PM
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Trip, check with Henry 66400.
He may have just what you need.
Shipping may be a beeoch though.
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Old June 15th, 2014, 02:59 PM
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More fun in the garage today. I removed the dash/instrument panel. Probably one of my least favorite things to do on a car next to bodywork and rusty exhaust systems. I think the car knew this because the heater controls fell squarely on my forehead and made me bleed for my foolishness.
When removing the convertible top button there is another piece that says Cutlass on it that covers a second slot for some kind of switch. What would that be for?

I have one problem here and before I do it 'my way' I'd like to get some ideas from you. Everyone of the speed nuts that hold the panel in will not come off. They just turn on the stud. I can see that the stud isn't turning so I can only assume the threads are dicked up. I managed to get a screw driver under some to try and pry them up and force thread engagement but no go. It's taunting me! ("He tasks me!" Star Trek geek quote from Khan about Capt. Kirk) I can only think of cutting them off but their positions are going to be tough to get to. Any ideas in reader land?
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Old June 15th, 2014, 03:23 PM
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Originally Posted by TripDeuces View Post
More fun in the garage today. I removed the dash/instrument panel. Probably one of my least favorite things to do on a car next to bodywork and rusty exhaust systems. I think the car knew this because the heater controls fell squarely on my forehead and made me bleed for my foolishness.
When removing the convertible top button there is another piece that says Cutlass on it that covers a second slot for some kind of switch. What would that be for?

I have one problem here and before I do it 'my way' I'd like to get some ideas from you. Everyone of the speed nuts that hold the panel in will not come off. They just turn on the stud. I can see that the stud isn't turning so I can only assume the threads are dicked up. I managed to get a screw driver under some to try and pry them up and force thread engagement but no go. It's taunting me! ("He tasks me!" Star Trek geek quote from Khan about Capt. Kirk) I can only think of cutting them off but their positions are going to be tough to get to. Any ideas in reader land?
The other hole is for a power antenna.

Can you try to get a pair of needle nose, or small pliers on the nut to pinch it and get it to bite or maybe pull off?
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Old June 15th, 2014, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by RandyS View Post
The other hole is for a power antenna.
or for rear window on the wagons.

Originally Posted by RandyS View Post
Can you try to get a pair of needle nose, or small pliers on the nut to pinch it and get it to bite or maybe pull off?
This is exactly how I do it too. The trick is getting a bite even on the edge of the speed nut and then wiggling the heck out of it to get it out. If I can just bust them I do because they're easy to replace.
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Old June 15th, 2014, 04:10 PM
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RandyS these speed nuts are on metal studs in the dash surround. I actually think the studs are welded to the underlying metal frame. I'll try pinching them and see how it goes. If not I'll cut them off with some dykes (diagonal cutting pliers for you new school people).

Thx Allan the rear window for wagons makes perfect sense. Wouldn't the antenna extend when you turned the radio on or was this before that time?
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Old June 15th, 2014, 04:14 PM
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I believe the power antenna was independent of the on/off controls for the radio. Not being a smartass, but if the antenna was keyed to the radio power wouldn't it automatically be switched with the on/off feature like the ones later on? In a way this is one thing I really like about the 70's A body - the antenna was encased in the front windshield and you never had to worry about antenna up/down.

I had that auto feature on many of my 98's. Royal PITA because you'd forget to turn off the radio going through a car wash and, yup - the brushes bent the crap out of it. I think I've replaced more power antennas than I'd care to admit.
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Old June 15th, 2014, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by TripDeuces View Post
RandyS these speed nuts are on metal studs in the dash surround. I actually think the studs are welded to the underlying metal frame. I'll try pinching them and see how it goes. If not I'll cut them off with some dykes (diagonal cutting pliers for you new school people).

Thx Allan the rear window for wagons makes perfect sense. Wouldn't the antenna extend when you turned the radio on or was this before that time?
On a Cutlass or 442, one hole is for the top, the other for the antenna. Yes, the studs are a part of the dash pad. Dikes might work too! I just reassembled one that Ron did for me.......... beautiful job BTW!
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Old June 15th, 2014, 09:24 PM
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Originally Posted by RandyS View Post
On a Cutlass or 442, one hole is for the top, the other for the antenna.
Absolutely! I was just mentioning the other option based on what I'd seen in the Assembly Manual.

That car is amazingly solid and intact!
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Old June 16th, 2014, 10:09 AM
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Success today with my trusty Dremel tool and some patience. Looks like it's time for a new dash pad also. I can see where there was a spot on the studs that was worn and the speed nut had no where to grab on to. I guess that's from vibration over the past 50 years. I'll just stack some washers over that spot when I reinstall it. I also ran a die down the stud to clean up everything. So far so good.
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Old June 16th, 2014, 12:22 PM
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Those speed nuts never had a chance. uhh, yes sir, I agree - definitely time for a new dash pad. Have you started sourcing out for that yet? I have to say I was really surprised to find that this part is now reproduced. Have a look at this link to the Parts Place (not too far from you). You can refinish it in whatever SEM color you choose.
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Old June 16th, 2014, 12:50 PM
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That's a great price for a dash pad. I know Just Dashes would want 2x that easy. I wonder about the quality though. Anyone know?

On a side note I just got off the phone with Ron Roth and he is going to refurbish my instrument panel. It's going to look sweet with the new gauges from New Vintage in there.
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Old June 16th, 2014, 01:19 PM
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I can't speak to the quality of the repop dash, but their close up pic of the grain looked right. Maybe bounce this off Ron and see what he thinks. Like I said, I was really surprised to see that pad on the web search.

A friend of mine (Brian) restored a 69 vert and used Just Dashes for some of his needs. They did charge a lot of money, but also the quality of their work wasn't up to concourse standards he needed for his restoration. He and I were chatting about this and he was really disappointed with what they sent back. (Vert A pillar interior covers). This is just info sharing, and may not be typical of their overall quality though.

For 279 though it's almost hard to go wrong. If you're considering the pad, check with PP about their return policy if you're not happy, BEFORE you buy.

One thing I noted on that eBay ad? It doesn't show the back side of the dash pad. I'd be asking them if the rear of the dash pad has the reinforcing where the 4 screws used to attach to the dash panel on the lower, and whether there are the studs for the speed nuts on the top 6. Heck, even ask if that includes the speed nuts.
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Old June 16th, 2014, 02:40 PM
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The one from The Parts Place is the one Ron recommends.
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