Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GSX clone

Discussion in 'Members Rides' started by 2791 lark custo, Mar 2, 2011.

  1. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    I bought my 72 skylark back in august of 09. I spent about 6 months looking for an old convertble to restore.

    My first choice was a 69 firebird convertible and I just about got one, but at the last minute I decided I couldn't afford one that was in good enough condition for me to work on. I had one of these some 30 years ago and loved the car.

    When I first saw this skylark I new nothing about Buick or skylarks. It was a straight car with low miles and it was priced with in my budget at just $8k.

    I drove the car for about six weeks and then it was time to move all of my woodworking tools to the side of the shop and put the Buick up on blocks for a while.
     
  2. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    Here are a few pic of the car as I recieved it.
     

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  3. V8Sky

    V8Sky "Scarlett"

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    Nice '72 Skylark vert Chuck! I added a lot of GS options to my own '72 Skylark vert. What plans do you have for your Buick?
     
  4. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    I have never worked on cars other than changing oil or maybe a disk break jobwhen I was missing my tool box.

    I have a friend that is helping me with this project. He does this as a side business for a lot of people here in the MPLS area. He charges me $30 an hour and comes by about every three months or so. We spend the day in the shop. My wife makes us a great lunch and at the end of the day we have gotton a lot of work done and I know what to do next.

    The first part of the project was to remove the engine and do a full rebuild. We ended up having to remove the front clip to get the engine out because I had purchaced the lift from Harborfreight and it did not have a long enough arm to reach.
     

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    Last edited: Nov 9, 2011
  5. V8Sky

    V8Sky "Scarlett"

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    Looks like you have the 2bbl intake and carb? An easy swap is to a 4bbl intake a swap when you are doing the rebuild. Ask here on the board if you need help locating the intake and carb. Good luck on the project - your Buick looks like a nice solid car which will look only better as you continue to work on it.:TU:
     
  6. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    With the engine removed and completely taken apart I started up cleaning the frame and underside with a wire brush attached to a 7 inch grinder.

    If any body out there has done this job they have an idea of just how bad it is. Now this was a clean car with little rust but you are working up-side-down with a high speed wheel removing 40 years of rust and gunk.

    I would wear coveralls, hearing protection, and a full breathing mask and still my wife would have me change in the garage before rushing me into the shower.

    It only took maybe 30-40 hours of actual work and the results were worth it.

    Once the GUNK was removed I painted with POR 15
     

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  7. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    I started out with this project being a STOCK rebuild. However with all the work and now knowing more about my car, I have decided to clone it to a 350 GSX.

    Changing direction misdstream is costly. If I had decided to do this from the start it would be a BBB I have been buying up parts. So far I have the 4bbl manifold, 72 GS air cleaner, 72 GS hood, Buick sport steering wheel and a 72 GS grill that will need repair.

    Most of these parts I have gotton from members of V8Buick.

    THANKS GUYS
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2012
  8. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    I only joined the V8 board here in January. If I had know about this place when the project started I whould have had a much easer time finding a few special parts.

    When the engine and trans. were ready to go back in I realized my kickdown cable was no good.

    So I started looking for a new one. Well Buick decided to have the kickdown cable attach to the foot pedel instead of the intake manifold like ALL the other GM cars with TH350s

    I wathced ebay and scowered CL but no luck. I tried some of the aftermarket cables that are UNIVERSAL no luck. Finaly I found an add in Hemmings and called a guy in Texas and he had one. $65 later I had one

    Once I had the cable, I realized I was also missing the little wire link inside the trans. that the kickdown cable attaches to. On this part I got very lucky, the first trans, shop I called just happened to have one. $5 later I had one

    With the engine being completely claened, painted and all new seals, bushings, rings, stock cam, head job and the trans attached it was time to install and see if she would fire up:beer

    The engine was installed a few days after Thanksgiving 2010
     

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    Last edited: Mar 2, 2011
  9. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    It took about 1/2 an hour to figure a few things out, but she ran like a champ. MY FIRST ENGINE REBUILD. :TU: It will not be my last.

    If I had decided to go with the GS clone from the begining it would have a 455 instead. So this way I will always have something to do on the old girl.

    A few pick of the front end and underside
     

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  10. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    Now it was time to start the body work. As I mentioned earler in the thread the car has very few issues.

    The right fender had some rot at the bottom, and there was also minor rust under the right side quarter chrome wheel trim.

    The left side of the car was almost the same. Some rot at the bottom of the cowl that will never be seen when the car is put back together, and the rust under the left side quarter wheel well trim. I have a quarter skin for this piece. I will cut about 2 inches into the quarter and remove as little of the quarter as possible.
     

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  11. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    It is time to remove the interior of the car so I can clean and put POR 15 on the top side of the body also. This is when I found a quality control checklist under the sound deadening material under the carpet. A very interesting piece of paper. It shows that my car had a few quality issues before it left the Flint plant.

    I also found some more rot above the trans. cross member. At this piont I thought I was in trouble. After some postings here members gave me confendence to fix the rot with patches and keep moving with my project.
     

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    Last edited: Mar 6, 2011
  12. Freakazoid

    Freakazoid Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    Very impressive. Your doing a great job. I like the POR-15.
     
  13. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    Just about have all of the ugly cortez gold paint removed. The next item on the list is the left quarter rust repair.

    I talked with a member here and was told to cut about 2 inches into the quarter away from rust that was under the quarter wheel trim.

    I already have the quarter skin so after I cut the one on the car I will use it as a templet for the skin and cut my patch. The patch will be 3/4 inch larger than the templet cut from the quarter

    Having never before done this job I am a bit nervous but I have good people advising me.

    Wish me luck
     

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  14. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    Cutting the quarter.
     

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  15. CraigFaller

    CraigFaller Well-Known Member

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    Hey, looks like you're doing some good work there! As a suggestion, invest in some good jackstands, I cringed when I saw your concrete and wood blocks. Just don't want to hear about a car falling on anyone!

    Keep up the good work!
     
  16. turbotimmer

    turbotimmer Stage 1 4 speed

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    Chuck, you're doing some really nice work. Although, I have to admit, you got balls. I don't think I could have brought myself to tear a car apart that looked as nice as yours from the beginning.:TU:
     
  17. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    I bought the car just after being laid off from a job I had for 24 years:Dou:

    I needed something to keep me going while I attend school for retraining.

    ANYBODY LOOKING FOR A R&D tech:dollar:
     
  18. Sonnie

    Sonnie New Member

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    I agree with turbotrimmer. You've got a set. Nice work!
     
  19. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    The really odd thing is I have never worked on cars. So ya this is a heck of a project.

    I do have a friend helping me that works on very high end show cars so I am not all on my own:beers2:
     
  20. 2791 lark custo

    2791 lark custo Gold Level Contributor

    Re: Chucks 72 skylark custom convertible to GS clone

    I purchaced a GS hood for my car a couple weeks back for way more than it was worth. I got taken. The hood was all smashed in on the front and bondoed over. The mounting nuts were not origanal. Basicly a piece of crap for what I paid.:rant:

    So now it is time to make lemonaid from lemons. I am going to cutout the scoops from the GS hood and attach them to my almost perfict skylark custom hood. I am also going to use the 3M body panel epoxy instead of welding for this project. less heat on a large flat surface. I hope it goes well.
     

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    Last edited: Oct 24, 2012

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