1916 Buick barn find

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Robert Bente
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1916 Buick barn find

Post by Robert Bente » Sun Jul 21, 2019 8:18 am

I just purchased a 1916 Buick D45 that has been stored since 1950. I know you folks appreciate old original stuff as much as I do. The story is that this was purchased by a returning WW 2 soldier, he drove it for awhile, then parked it in a barn for a future project. It sat there for 50 years until they sold the farm. He had another metal building constructed in another town, with the main purpose of protecting this vehicle. It sat for another 20 years.
The best part is that I believe at least 95% parts are there and original to car.
It’s a big beautifully ugly car, wheel base is 15” longer than a T touring.
I’m scratching my head on the next step, I’m willing to put some time in it, but not to much money.
Any thoughts from my friends on the forum?
r/s Bob
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Rich Eagle
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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Rich Eagle » Sun Jul 21, 2019 8:47 am

That is an intriguing picture. They are so beautiful when discovered like that.
Best wishes with the project.
Rich
When did I do that?


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Beautiful

Post by FreighTer Jim » Sun Jul 21, 2019 12:08 pm

Robert

What a beautiful find.

Thanks for sharing.

Do nothing to it for now.

As money becomes available - try first to get the engine running - then work your way back.

What a great story .... :mrgreen:



FJ


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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Burger in Spokane » Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:28 pm

As I came into the old car scene as a teen, it was just general practice to make everything
flawless and new again .... total teardown and rebuild/paint EVERYTHING ! I did this to a number
of cars, and watched my fellow travelers to the same to many more. But something began to grind
on me about this, and that my excitement and pleasure was never greater than when I saw a car
sitting in its dust-covered, forlorn state, and I began to rethink my own mindless acceptance that
old cars gotta be made perfect and pretty. And over time, I realized that "assignment" of being
forlorn was mine alone, and that I could CHOOSE to see a car like this as being "perfect" as-is, and
that keeping a car looking like that barn-fresh discovery was a FAR better target to shoot for than
turning one more wonderful time capsule into just another polished up and perfect paperwight to
hold a car show parking lot down .... boring !

Were it mine, I'd make it run and safe to drive, and do my best to distress the aesthetics of any
new work done, to preserve the as-found appearance of the car. IMO, this car will never look better
than it does in the above photo. Spend cubic dollars to restore it, and you only degrade the historic
look and appeal in the process. I am sure there are more perfect/restored examples out there today
than there are ones that look like this.
More people are doing it today than ever before !

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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Mopar_man » Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:44 pm

I say get it running and make it safe but that's it. Make it the car that people look at and say "That thing runs?"

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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Rich Eagle » Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:57 pm

Historical Preservation is becoming more and more popular. Like other antiques they may someday be more valuable the less we touch them. I developed a love for the way they look over the years too. Perhaps it is remembering how we saw the possibilities in them. The ones I put together that look old don't have that history or value but going through everything makes them more mechanically sound and reliable. It is difficult to go through one without changing the appearance but certainly possible.
When did I do that?


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One of a kind

Post by FreighTer Jim » Mon Jul 22, 2019 10:41 am

Every vehicle is “ one of a kind “.

Ego - narcissism- vanity compel folks to turn
a vehicle into something it never was.

Just like all of us - vehicles age.

Just like all of us - vehicles have a story to tell.

Recently - I helped out my good friend in
Holbrook, AZ go pick up and transport this
1911 Maxwell Survivor from Cave Creek, AZ
back to his place.

He is just going to get it running & leave it alone.



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FJ


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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Robert Bente » Mon Jul 22, 2019 11:11 am

I’m going to pickup the Buick today. If there is an interest I can post more pictures when I get it home. I agree that it’s only original once, and I like the look and the story it has to tell.
A few years ago I purchased a 30 chevy with a similar story. I went thru it and got it mechanically sound, and drove it. I even left the 1944 gas ration sticker on the windshield. I did have to paint rear fenders.
r/s Bob
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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Duey_C » Mon Jul 22, 2019 11:13 pm

"if there is an interest" in showing more pics you ask Bob? Duh! You'd better! If you don't, I'm gonna be peeved. :lol:
What an outstanding opportunity and I like your style. Please show us more.
That Chevrolet is gorgeous.
As mentioned plus, clean it up, make it safe again, enjoy the automobile and watch the people drool.
Myself included. I didn't have to slurp yet but close.
Pull the pan, shifter/cover off the transmission and check all you can etc etc so it won't tear itself apart from the inside out.
Here in "moisture/humidity land" where rust will destroy anything from the inside out, we get kinda antsy about those things. ;)
Your new Buick has mechanical brakes I think so clean and oil the linkages, check the shoes and be happy. Hopefully not too bad from a financial standpoint either. :)

30 years ago I bought a 1928 Twin City 17-28 tractor, tore it apart, fixed it up and painted it up pretty. I sure wish I hadn't.
My color choice was actually FAR more correct than the other fellas back then! I stood out! City of Montreal/Battleship gray is correct.
I used Northwest Airlines gray. The paint is fading, peeling in some places and generally looks sad. Poor ol' boy.
I'll echo, they're original only once.
Since I lost my mind mind, I feel more liberated


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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by wayne sheldon » Tue Jul 23, 2019 3:07 am

Wow Bob! That Buick looks great! Should be a fine addition to your collection.


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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by John kuehn » Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:13 am

That Buick is a wonderful example of an old car that hasn’t been touched. Get it running and make it road worthy as is. Now that would be neat. Makes me think of early Brass era T’s that were found in similar condition and then restored when they shouldn’t have. To each their own I guess.


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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Robert Bente » Wed Jul 24, 2019 7:52 am

Well, I brought it home and needless to say, the wife was very unimpressed. In fact my intelligence was brought into question as was hers for marrying a person who would bring something like this home. It’s all good though.
The first thing I did was to remove 75 lbs. of mud dobber castings, that’s 5 five gallon buckets worth.
Most of the undercarriage and drive train are covered in a 1/4 inch of old oil and dirt. As far as I can tell, the only part missing is the high tension tube that mounts on the side of engine.
Since the engine won’t turn over, I then pulled the plugs and added a couple tablespoons of marvel mystery.
I used a saws all to cut a tire off for measurements and believe I’ll need 34 x 4’s. It had a white inner tube. So I’ll be looking for some local roller tires if anyone has them. I’m not ready to invest in a new set until I know the issue with the engine.
Just to assure you guys, my plan at the moment is just to get it in a safe drivable condition. The seats may take some creative imagination, the leather that’s there is shot. There is only some minor surface rust and the wood is in very good condition. When I pulled the demountable tire rim off, the nuts spun off with the fingers. Maybe that’s one of the perks about California and it’s dry climate. It’s amazing the power plant differences between my 16 T and this 16 Buick. I can see why the model T was such a success, simple and easy to work on.https:/httphttps://www.mtfca.com/phpBB3/download/file.php? ... w&id=22113
r/s Bob
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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by FreighTer Jim » Thu Jul 25, 2019 12:54 am

Boy does that engine look great :!:

No advice about the Wife

FJ


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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Dallas Landers » Thu Jul 25, 2019 4:04 pm

Robert, its ok as long as your still sleeping in the house. My wife thinks Im crazy as a loon for rusty 100 year old iron. Maybe she is correct in thinking that? What a great car. Dodge brothers cars had a similar setup with the water pump. I love your plan to get it running and safe. Creative seats are what I had in my roadster fo some time. I covered them with burlap feed sacks. My granddaughters complained it made their legs itch so I gave in and put the seats from my other car in. That car will get more attention than a restored one. I think it makes them aproachable. I know when I am around a nice restored car Im nervous about getting too close. Dont want to damage it . I know the work that goes into them. The more photos of the Buick the better for me!

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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Kaiser » Fri Jul 26, 2019 7:57 am

I can see why this is in the OT: not only does it have a waterpump, but it also has a distributor ! :lol:
Jeez what a find, another one saved, looking forward to see it run again...
When in trouble, do not fear, blame the second engineer ! 8-)
Leo van Stirum, Netherlands
'23 Huckster


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Robert Bente
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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Robert Bente » Fri Jul 26, 2019 9:41 am

Well...... I disassembled the rockers and pulled the lifters “roller type”, cleaned and greased. Very little to no moisture pits. All the valves as were the lifters were either sticky or stuck. Everything went together nicely. Tried to crank engine, it’s still stuck.
I think my next step is to drop the pan and scratch my head on what to do next. Thoughts? Ideas?
I would put this on the HCCA forum, but I would probably have to wait for a blue moon to get a response. I appreciate any ideas?
r/s Bob
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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by wayne sheldon » Sat Jul 27, 2019 6:38 am

Cleaning the pan is of course a good and wise idea. Make sure all moving parts of the motor has good fresh wet oil on it. Since the valve parts were gummy and sticky but not rusty, it is likely the cylinders should be okay also. After a crankcase cleanup and oiling, and letting the cylinders sit for about a week with a few good quirts of oil in each? Try gently rocking the car forward and backward in high gear. DO NOT force it! Often, an engine can loosen up in just a few minutes of rocking it.
Another possibility, You may be able to get a decent look inside the cylinders by removing the valve cages. I have never tried that with an early Buick, but some horseless era cars that can be done. Here again, DO NOT force them! They can become stuck and the cages can be broken if forced.


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Will Copeland

Post by FreighTer Jim » Sat Jul 27, 2019 7:27 am

Call my friend Will Copeland in Florida @ 321-474-4102.

He may not answer - leave a voice message - then text him.


FJ

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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Duey_C » Sat Jul 27, 2019 2:03 pm

Oh! A headless horseman!
Crazy notions from a madman: Add a boat-load more of MMO to the tops of the cylinders, watch below for the leaker's, they're good or closer. I've read about fellas using a hydraulic jack on the rods underneath to use the weight of the front end to move a stuck piston.
Heard of gas engine guys fitting a grease Zerk into the spark plug hole, filling with grease, then a pump a day or whatever. That's a couple thou psi I believe.
Here's what I've had setting for a few months. Trying to force 1,000 psi hydraulic oil down the oiler tube around the piston to soften the rust.
Has worked yet.
P1010004.JPG
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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by david_dewey » Sat Jul 27, 2019 10:52 pm

the water pump and distributor are driven off the camshaft gear, which MAY be fiber. I will be willing to bet that the water pump shaft is frozen, causing your problem. The most knowledgeable Buick person on this forum that I know of is Erik Barrett--so ask him. Be very careful about that camshaft timing gear they are almost made of Unobtainium.
the other thing, if you have to get down that far, is to be VERY careful to not let the pistons go up in the cylinder beyond where the crank moves them, as the upper part of the cylinder where the valves are is larger in diameter than the cylinder, and the head is NOT removable. Push a piston up too far and the ring will pop out of its groove, and then you are stuck! New piston time!
T'ake care,
David Dewey


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Erik is also a good choice

Post by FreighTer Jim » Sun Jul 28, 2019 11:01 am

Erik in Auburn , CA is also a good choice
@ 530-863-7579


FJ

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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Duey_C » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:02 pm

Just found this Bob! An inspirational set of tube videos perhaps? An original '18 just woke up.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CIPmxELliK4
Excuse if out of place. Perhaps some useful info watching along his path for yours.
Goll, they sound real nice.
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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by ironhorse » Tue Jul 30, 2019 1:24 pm

Bob the impellers in those water pumps are few and far between. I bought this one at a yard sale in the bottom of a box thinking it would fit my Buick but it is too big,If it will fit yours let me know.
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Good luck with the project :D
Do it right or do it over,your choice. Drive like everyone is out to get you!


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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Dallas Landers » Tue Jul 30, 2019 1:58 pm

One pack nut may be left hand thread on the water pump also.


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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Robert Bente » Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:35 am

Thank you all for your input and insight. I took 4 days off the project and went fishing. I guess I like frustration.
I pulled the 40 lb. oil pan off and found an inch worth of black polenta on the bottom. Still trying to figure out the oil pump disassembly. So far all nuts and bolts have come off easily.
It’s interesting what Fords competition was doing, for a few hundred dollars more you get an oil pump, water pump, starter/generator, speedometer, 3 speeds, external and internal brakes, what maybe an air compressor?
Just a lot of extras that can break in my opinion, but nice when working.
r/s Bob
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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Rich Eagle » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:27 am

That oil is fun to dig out. My Maxwell apparently used the same stuff. ;O)
When did I do that?


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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Rich Bingham » Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:26 am

Thanks for letting us watch over your shoulder!
Great fun to see and watch your progress. What a wonderful find this car is !
"Get a horse !"

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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Rich Eagle » Fri Aug 02, 2019 1:08 pm

What Rich said.
When did I do that?


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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Dallas Landers » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:29 pm

Oil pump? Water what? The key word in speedometer is speed. Were talking about a model T there.

Hey thanks for the update and Im waiting for more. What fun!


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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by Robert Bente » Wed Aug 14, 2019 9:13 am

I’ve been making slow progress, but progress nonetheless. Water pump and starter generator shaft now have some back and forth movement. Engine is still stuck. I’ve talked with Erik B. and he recommended looking into the cylinder head with a borescope, so I’m waiting on delivery. Hopeful I’ll be able to use this $20 piece of high tech. I’ve pulled the manifolds off, and of course, a small piece is broken on one of the mountings. The marvel vacuum carburetor will not be as simple as the holly G to overhaul. All the moving parts and pieces are either stuck or very sticky, but not from rust.
r/s Bob
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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by wayne sheldon » Thu Aug 15, 2019 6:27 am

Progress, even slow, is GOOD!


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Re: 1916 Buick barn find

Post by BHarper » Sat Aug 31, 2019 11:25 pm

Hi Robert,

A few years ago an acquaintance bought a similar ('18 or '20??) Buick. Unrestored, very original and correct. It's engine was stuck, also. After some probing, he concluded that the waterpump was seized. On his car the the shaft from the distributor through the H2O pump and to the timing gear is ONE piece. He elected to cut the shaft on both sides of the pump to then easily remove the pump and rebuilt it.
He source a pair of suitable couplers to allow reassembly of the shafting and was back in business.

That repair may not appeal to you, but it might be food for thought.
Good luck with your project, Bill

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