72 GS Convertible
Car had a small amount of rust in the trunk and rear quarters.
Typical northern car. It was a low option car, manual drum brakes, hubcaps,
no A/C. In fact the only real options it had were AM-FM and power steering.
The price $1500!! Remember this was 1982.
I told him to keep looking, he was in college and on a budget
and I was sure he could not afford to get it to just where he could drive
it. That didnt stop him, he loved the car and bought it the next day.
The next week it was at the shop where I worked in need of
a new exhaust, what was left of it completely fell off. I replaced mufflers
and welded the rest to get it back on the road. It wasnt long before
he realized that he was not going to be able to afford to keep it. At this
point I realized the potential the car had. We made a deal that I would
buy it for the price he paid (against my better judgment). I gave him a
$500 down payment. Since he couldnt drive it I lent him my 1971 Olds
Cutlass S to use until he found another car. A few weeks later
he totaled it, I was back to only one car.
I immediately got to work on my new car. I completely rebuild
the front end, new tires, new brakes and wheel cylinders, and a new dual
exhaust. The car drove great, I was hooked.
The following spring it was time to get to work on the body.
I replaced the fender and door. My father and I gave it a new coat of paint.
I replaced the top. The car turned heads where ever I went.
The next year I joined the Air Force and ended up being assigned
to Charleston Air Force Base in South Carolina. Safe from the northern climate
I drove the car until 1988 when I moved back to New York. Now married my
wife and I needed to buy a house so the car was put in storage until we
were settled in a house and able to do a frame off restoration on it. She
loved the car as much as I did and we started to buy parts. As it turns
out I should have bought two of everything.
Life happens, we bought a house with only a small garage,
we had two children. The car was on hold. Finally I was able to build a
new garage with plenty of room to work on the car. Then I got transferred,
bought another house with a one car garage, but plenty of room for another.
A few years later I finally get my new garage built.. The Friday after Thanksgiving
2001 I started the restoration I had put on hold since 1988.
I started with the rust in the quarters and trunk floor.
The floor pans werent too bad but the body brace was rusted. I ended
up replacing it and the floor pans. Once the quarters, trunk and floor pans
were replaced, I pulled the frame out. The frame was sandblasted painted
with POR 15 and top coated with chassis black. All the bushing were replaced,
new brake and fuel lines, everything replaced or detailed. I converted to
disc brakes as well. The bottom of the car was sandblasted and repainted.
I had the doors and fenders media blasted. Once the frame was back under
it I rolled it back under the body. I covered the frame with two layers
of plastic and lower the body back down and bolted it in placed. The sheetmetal
was primed, jambs painted and put back on. I repainted it the original Cascade
Blue metallic. Had all the plastic interior parts chromed and a complete
new interior, I also converted to bucket seats and full console. I rebuilt
the transmission. The original 350 engine was in good shape, so I did a
valve job and installed new bearings.
By the spring of 2003, I was almost done. I made the decision
to put some of the final details on hold till this winter. I was able to
drive the car to the Rhinebeck New York show in May. On the way home a connecting
rod let go, so much for new bearings! I was able to locate another low mileage
350 and had it installed by the following weekend.
We spent the summer going to local cruise nights and shows.
The final details are getting done. I converted to gauges and rallye clock.
Added sport mirrors. The rear bumper rechromed. I sent out the console insert
to be rechromed. The top will be replaced and the top frame repainted in
time for next cruise season. My wife and I love our GS even if we got it