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 Slow but steady

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The Lew

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Posts : 7
Join date : 2014-02-23
Age : 33
Location : North Tonawanda, New York

PostSubject: Slow but steady   Sun Feb 23, 2014 1:28 am

Well let me start by saying that whoever had the idea to come up with a forum dedicated to 59 Pontiacs is awesome! I feel this is definitely a car that gets overlooked and overshadowed by muscle cars. Don't get me wrong I love muscle cars as well as the next person but what about the more unique cars, you know? The cars that don't constant grace the covers of car craft and hot rod magazine. Any way I live in New York just outside of Buffalo. Before I picked up my Pontiac I acquired a 1966 Thunderbird from my old man who didn't have much time for it. Never thought I would like a Ford but I sure its the only one I will ever like. Its a great car. Ive done a lot of work to it over the years. It only needs some paint and a few misc interior items. Needless to say if it wasn't for that car and helping my old man out in the garage I probably never would have gotten into cars. Either way I work at the AF base up here and on the way home from work roughly seven years ago I came across the 59 Pontiac Starchief that I have now. 4-door 389ci 2 barrel that if I hadn't picked it up was probably going to meet the crusher. I was familiar with the typical Pontiac cars, GTOs, Lemans, etc but I never heard of this thing. Its condition at the time wasn't the greatest and it was owned by a guy who collected Fords. The damn thing didn't even turnover when I got it. The motor was ceased. I picked it up for $900. It was pretty straight and fairly solid so I figured worst case scenario i could throw a solid crate motor in it an make it a sleeper. But with a little help from my father we got it to turn over. I had it stored in the guy i bought it froms place of business and over time just kept filling the crankcase with oil to free that sucker up. I didn't believe it when I looked into it but come to find out it only had 39,000 original miles on it. Good stuff totally good stuff. The guy I picked it up from told me he never drove it just had it in his garage for 12 years and the guy before him had it for 15 years and barely put any miles on it. It seems to me that for the past 30 or so years it was kicked around from owner to owner with no good intensions in site. A total shame. Since I have gotten it I have got the engine running smoothly and am to the point where I need to replace some sheet metal. There are only a few things I plan to farm out but the rest I shall complete myself. Pretty soon I will post some pics. Thanks again for this awesome forum!
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Cat SS 59

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Posts : 84
Join date : 2010-10-12
Age : 58
Location : Westmoreland, NH

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Sun Feb 23, 2014 10:56 pm

Welcome to the site The Lew. You will find some very good info here. Sounds like your car has been inside most of it's life and hardly driven. Good luck with all your restoration work. Jim
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Michayos

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Posts : 148
Join date : 2013-08-27
Age : 51
Location : Lockport, NY

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Mon Feb 24, 2014 10:18 am

Welcome Lew!  It sounds like you and I live very close to each other.  I'm in Lockport.  If you ever need anything let me know.  I'm always glad to help and exchange knowledge!  Michael
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The Lew

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Posts : 7
Join date : 2014-02-23
Age : 33
Location : North Tonawanda, New York

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Mon Feb 24, 2014 10:47 pm

Thanks guys. I do have a few questions. One being how do I upload images? I have an apple computer and don't know what to put in the url. And where can I find a trunk pan for the Chief? I have seen a lot of Catalina and Bonneville trunk pans. All shapes and sizes. Would one of those work? Thanks.
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Cat SS 59

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Posts : 84
Join date : 2010-10-12
Age : 58
Location : Westmoreland, NH

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Tue Feb 25, 2014 7:27 pm

Lew, here is the easiest way to post pictures. We have a site on http://photobucket.com/
Log in as : Pontiac-59
password: widetrack

You will see many of our members with albums, you'll make your own album. Upload your pictures to your photobucket album.
To post on this site:
Click the picture you want to post from your album page. With the single picture showing, on the right side you will see a box "Image Links", below you will see "IMG code", left click on the code and it will say "copied".
Now come back to this site. When you decide to "Post a Reply" In the line of symbols above, click on the box that looks like a TV(in the middle) and it will say "image", paste the copied img code. It won't show up until you click on the "preview" tab at the bottom and bingo, your picture shows up. If everything looks good, click "send" and your picture is now in your post
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CATBIRD



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Join date : 2008-07-03
Age : 75
Location : Levittown, Pa

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Thu Feb 27, 2014 6:21 pm

Lew.....welcome to the forum. I don't know much about uploading pictures, (if I did posting would be much easier) but I do know about trunk replacement. If you don't care much about originality, anyone with a bead roller and a welder could fabricate a decent functional trunk floor. If however, you want a correct looking replacement, that is a little more involved.

I have never seen a direct reproduction of the 1959-60 (same) Pontiac panels. Thanks to good old General Motors parts interchangeability, 1959-60 Chevrolet trunk panels are almost exactly the same. While the factory floor was one piece, the Chevrolet reproductions are made in three pieces to facilitate easier installation. Depending on how bad your existing floor is, you might be able to purchase just the left, center, or right section to use as a patch panel. One word of caution here, while the 1959 left and center are a match for our cars, the right side of Chevrolets had a spare tire well in it. For the right side you need the 1960 piece, which was flat with the mounting space for the spare tire "J hook" bracket.

Keep in mind, Chevrolets were shorter and narrower than Catalinas, and Catalinas were shorter than Starchiefs and Bonnevilles. All of this difference was in the trunk area. While the Chevrolet pans have all of the correct beads and flanges they will be slightly short where they meet up with the vertical part of the rear axel kick-up. Although they fit properly around the wheel housings, they may need to be extended forward depending on how much of the existing horizontal  floor needs to be cut out there. Since our cars are wider, small strips also need to be extended on each side to meet the trunk drop-offs.

When I did the trunk on my Catalina convertible, I used the Chevrolet panels as I've described. If I were ever to do this again, I would purchase a good quality bead roller (I'm going to anyway) and fabricate my own in two pieces. I'm confident that I could make a reasonably close replica of the original without the extra patching in......John
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Michayos

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Join date : 2013-08-27
Age : 51
Location : Lockport, NY

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Thu Feb 27, 2014 10:05 pm

Lew, I used these on my Catalina.  Some mods needed but the fit was close.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/TRUNK-FLOOR-PAN-PONTIAC-1959-60-CATALINA-NEW-/141200402867?pt=Motors_Car_Truck_Parts_Accessories&hash=item20e03329b3&vxp=mtr

I think the Bonnie and Star Chief trunk floors are the same.  The same guy sells them too.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/TRUNK-FLOOR-PAN-PONTIAC-1959-60-BONNEVILLE-NEW-FREE-SHIPPING-/141199953558?pt=Motors_Car_Truck_Parts_Accessories&hash=item20e02c4e96&vxp=mtr

Personally from my experience with the catalina trunk floor panels, the Bonnie floors look more accurate.  If the section around the wheel wells on the catalina peice were the same as the design on the Bonny peice, I would have had to do very little modifications.

You can always cut off some if it's too big.  Adding more metal on means more welding and grinding.  Something I've become very familiar with over the past 2 years!  LOL
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The Lew

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Join date : 2014-02-23
Age : 33
Location : North Tonawanda, New York

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Thu Feb 27, 2014 11:53 pm

I seen those on ebay and was hesitant to pull the trigger and get them. Once my one week picture probation is up Ill throw up some pics and you guys can see whats going on. Typical 59 rust spots.
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The Lew

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Join date : 2014-02-23
Age : 33
Location : North Tonawanda, New York

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Tue Mar 04, 2014 10:46 pm

Alright, here are a few shots of what I got going on. Seems like the typical rust spots; rear quarters, trunk pan, right front floor pan, and a few other misc spots. Any one of the mystical places H2O likes to hide.
IMG_1836_zps401d400e.jpg.html][/url]
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Michayos

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Age : 51
Location : Lockport, NY

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Wed Mar 05, 2014 2:03 pm

Yeah, pretty typical rust spots. Check the drain tubes on both the front and rear windows. There are small hoses that allow water in the window channel to drain out. The front hoses are under the sides of the windshield where it wraps around and drain out behind the rear section of each front fender. The rear drain tubes come down inside the trunk allong the wheel wells. Look inside the trunk just behind the seat on each side. Its common for these hoses to get plugged up, crack, or break off completely. When that happens the water runs into your trunk or onto the front floor pans.

Michael
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The Lew

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Join date : 2014-02-23
Age : 33
Location : North Tonawanda, New York

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Mon Mar 10, 2014 8:01 pm

I knew about the ones in the trunk. Funny thing is those are intact but above the trunk lid just below the lowest curve of the window, small rust holes developed because of sitting dirt and leaves. But I definitely did not know about the front tubes.
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Michayos

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Age : 51
Location : Lockport, NY

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Tue Mar 11, 2014 6:46 am

You might want to check those rear tubes just to be safe. The rusty stain coming down your rear drivers side wheel well it a typical sign of something wrong with those drain tubes.
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59 Sport Coupe

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Join date : 2012-04-15
Age : 50
Location : Europe ( FRANCE )

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Sat Mar 15, 2014 5:09 am

Wow, I am always amazed when I see cars on which you replace the metal panels. I have great respect for your work and your car heritage.
In my country we do not have much choice as the Pontiac 59 are rare.
But for you, I see on Ebay or other Pontiac 59 that look less corroded. And for a proper amount of dollars.
http://www.collectorcarads.com/Pontiac-Bonneville/38156.
http://www.americandreamcars.com/1959catalinavista062210.htm

Because it takes a lot of work to replace or repair a diseased body.

I know that your country is 17 times bigger than mine, but would it not be better to pick a car in better condition?
Or take two cars to rebuild a very beautiful?
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The Lew

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Posts : 7
Join date : 2014-02-23
Age : 33
Location : North Tonawanda, New York

PostSubject: Re: Slow but steady   Sat Mar 15, 2014 2:46 pm

Ideally that would probably be the best scenario but living up north can be rough with the winters and i wanted to find somethig i could learn alot from. Body work, welding etc. the only thing i definitely dont have a knack for is paint. That is something i would let someone else tackle. I just find welding and metal working techniques easier that the paint aspect. Plus in most cases you only have one shot to make the paint good. I can get as far as the hammer and dolly work but after that its all down hill haha.
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