Olds secrets

Discussion in 'The "Other" Bench' started by PGSS, Jun 7, 2018.

  1. PGSS

    PGSS Well-Known Member



    I'm having trouble with the direct links but some interesting "sneaking" going on with olds in the day..First time iv'e seen it anyways..
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2018
  2. TrunkMonkey

    TrunkMonkey Well-Known Member

  3. wkillgs

    wkillgs Gold Level Contributor

    Great website, visited it many times. Didn't see this article till now. Good stuff!
  4. PGSS

    PGSS Well-Known Member

    I knew the early series Olds 400 was a strong runner but seeing some suspiciously strong 1/4 times on the sponsered 66 W30's, now I can see why..
    Thanx for fixing the link Micheal..
    TrunkMonkey likes this.
  5. TrunkMonkey

    TrunkMonkey Well-Known Member

    Happy to help. My first love is a Buick, and second is an Olds mill.

    I was most fortunate to have a crazy wicked running 330 back in 1978.

    Bought a 1964 Special post from a good friend I was stationed with at Eglin AFB.

    Could not find an affordable Buick motor, so I bought an old '66 F-85 from a lady for $125 bucks.

    It had a 330/2bbl, 3 on the tree and 3.08 posi.

    Went by and (it had been sitting, not "road worthy") and got it fired up and drove it home.

    Smoked like a freight train, but it "had some giddy-up", so I figured it had potential.

    Now, everyone told me I could not make any of it work, but I was young and had a need for speed...

    Pulled the engine, and got the "numbers" off the block, heads and so forth, and found the heads had been replaced as a "cheap and easy" head job, with knurled valve guides that started leaking until the lady could not drive the car any more.

    Several plugs had "extensions" to minimize oil fouling to the plugs.

    Went to the base library and did research on all the numbers I could find. Found that the heads were "F" coded 1970 W30 heads, and the guy at the auto parts store told me "those are good!" I pulled the engine and took it to the machine shop.

    Went .060 over, TRW forged 10:1, Melling cam with the W31 specs (.475/328/108) and put it all together.

    Swapped the Buick 2.78 open for the 3.08 posi, and put the three speed in, and went drove for break in 500 miles, nice and easy.

    After break in, I found the radiator (1964 300 v-8 2 row down flow) was inadequate, I had a local radiator shop build me a 4 row cross flow and fixed the heat issue.

    Then drove it around to get about 500 miles on it, and afterwards, I stuffed the long pedal, found it was less than "underwhelming" in the acceleration department.

    I was somewhat disappointed, and after talking with my friend at the autoparts store, I started thinking I needed a 4 speed.

    I got a job at the local salvage yard, (so I could make a few dollars for parts, and also scrounge for things I needed at the parts yard.

    During this time, I found a 1070 4 door Cutlass with a Q-jet so I swapped my 2 bbl intake, rebuilt the Q-jet and one day a early 70s Vega with a four speed was brought to the yard.

    Got the tranny for $25 and swapped the 3 speed out, bought a Mr. Gasket Competition shifter, and took it for a spin.

    OMG! It was a "new" machine. Sucker hooked up and launched like it was going to the moon.

    That car went from Dr. Jekyll to Mr. Hyde.

    That car ran like the wind, and I pretty much beat anything off the line.

    With the gearing of that tranny, and hitting 7000 RPM, it could pull to about 45 in first and t0 70 in second. After that, I was far enough out that I simply dumped the accelerator and watched as the other car did the "high speed loser flyby".

    There were a couple of times I was left looking at tail lights. One was a 'vette, and another was a Turbo Caddie, and one was a 455 Olds 442 rolling on at about 45 when we both punched it.

    I saw the long legs that a big block has.

    Drove that car every day back and forth to work, and from Florida to Kansas, and then after sitting for three years, back to Florida and again back and forth to work until I gave it to my "ex" in the end of 1983.

    She drove it for a year, then hit a dump truck and sold it. (it got away from her after turning a corner, broke loose and she hit the back of the 2.5 ton dump truck.

    I got lucky with the car/build and everything, including the stars, lined up on that one.

    Yeah, I really miss that car.

    To be young again....

    (My OldsmoBuick)



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  6. Donuts & Peelouts

    Donuts & Peelouts Life's 2 Short. Live like it.

    Hey I'm a closet olds fan too, Always got my radar out for them. My first car was a Cadillac. My first fast car was a Chevy but my first classic was an Olds.two 63 f85's. But I sold them to get an A body. I wanted out the unit body mil. I had the money and it was between a 67 cutlass and a 65 skylark. I choose the Buick and don't regret it at all. But I grew out of Chevy and Cadillac. But I still have my eyes out for olds since people sell them so cheap, they had good engines. But like the song goes" wouldent you rather have... a Buick" lol. I always like looking at your 64 Special Micheal.
    PGSS likes this.
  7. PGSS

    PGSS Well-Known Member

    I'm Buick Always! first, Pontiac 2nd then Olds..although the Olds 70 W30 is growing on me "just a little though":rolleyes: We all seem to agree to be GM
    Micheal so just a 4bbl basicly and the 4 speed woke it up:) I'm curious why as the 3 speed first gear had to be at least 2.42?? I'm guessing the 4 speed kept that 330 in a favorable rpm?
    Sorry for the ex's accident and losing that nice! car and the good F heads to boot. "Dig the petals"!! A bit late but was she a knowledged car girl, thinking the posi spun her around? There no issues with the 2.07 intake valves i'm assuming.
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2018
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  8. TrunkMonkey

    TrunkMonkey Well-Known Member

    It did not spin on her, she made a right at an intersection, nailed it, and grabbed second about the time and a dump truck made a right turn in front of her about 200 feet down the road from where she made the turn so she tried to steer around him (four lane) but caught it with the right front fender. She sold it after that (I found out when I saw a guy driving it and it had a light blue fender, no grill or front bumper.) :(

    To the dump truck driver's credit, it was getting dark, she had just gotten off work and if she had turned at normal speed, she would have moved to the left and eased around him, but she closed the distance pretty fast, and he was only moving about 5-10 MPH when she was about 60 MPH and noticed him.

    She could drive it, but just was not really the most attentive or thinking far enough ahead and I think it intimidated her a bit.

    As far as the three speed and what not.

    The cam had the power band up around 3500-7000, under that and it was not real responsive. It ran about 22 inches of vacuum at about 70 MPH around 2400 rpm. Got fantastic mileage if I kept my foot out of it.

    The four speed was a saginaw out of a 73 or 74 Vega and it had a really nice low gear that just matched perfectly with the gearing and the engine's power.
    The four speed was 3.11 first and 2.20 second. The three speed was 2.85 first and 1.68 second.

    When I did the leaving from the light, I would stab it and slide off the clutch just enough to launch without wheelspin, and it would jump out a car length or two.

    If the other cat was slow to leave, spun the tires it was always just gone, if they had a good launch, the car would pull so good in first and second, that it walked away.

    Since most of the "fun" was first and second. (tried to never get over 70mph) it likely would have been a great 1/8 mile runner. But it just did not have enough once it got up around 100 and wind resistance really started becoming obvious, and I also did not trust the stock suspension any higher than that.

    I had a friend that did porting and matching of the heads and intake, and I just got lucky that all the parts worked so well together.
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2018
  9. PGSS

    PGSS Well-Known Member

    Total bummer, one of those only if's story's..
    Never knew the Saginaw had those nice first 2 gears but reading up on them it seems this build was hitting its close to it power limits.
    Yeah the 64 were a bit boxy up front but I can imagine the wind resistance on a 55 Chevy:D I do keep looking at the pic's and really was a nice car. I'm also shocked that the original donor F-85 had a posi in the first place as it sounds like it was a stripper.
  10. Taulbee2277

    Taulbee2277 Silver Level contributor

    I adore the lines on a 68 Olds Cutlass, and look forward to the day when one graces my garage once again. All I need is a new house, a barn, and funds.. such a short to-do list haha.
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