10-16-2013 Inner Circle

10-16-2013 Inner Circle

Greetings Turbo Regal Inner Circle Members 10-16-2013


On one of my recent trips to the U Pull It Yards, I found this Government Guide book dated January 1994 in one of the Buick glove boxes. It's a 45-page booklet listing all the areas in the U.S., Puerto Rico, and Virgin Islands that the U.S. Government credit card can be used. The booklet lists locations not only good for gasoline, but also various other services. These would include car washes, as well as lubrication services at certain Jiffy Lube locations.

PHOTO 1 - The photo on the left shows the Government Vehicle Operators Guide for January 1994. The photo on right shows a typical 2-page from this same booklet. It's ironic that I recently found this when the news this past week has centered around the inability of our government to function.


Again, going to these various U Pull It Yards, I am learning a lot, not only about our cars, but how GM made various changes in the years after our cars were produced. This is besides the obvious changes such as better body panel fit and better paint jobs!

In photo 4 of the 9-25-2013 Inner Circle we showed the two forms that Buick used as a Basic New Vehicle and Pre-Delivery Inspection Procedure. They also had another form entitled, "CUSTOMER SATISFACTION DELIVERY PROCEDURE."

Buick changed both these formats slightly during the mid 1990s. It was smaller in size and was folded in half to fit in the glove box. The ones I show in the below Photo 2 and 3 I found never filled out in a mid 1990s Buick glove box.

PHOTO 2 - The photo on the left shows the New Vehicle and Pre-Delivery Inspection Procedure for our vintage Buicks. The photo on the right shows the newer mid-1990s version. Both still retain a 3-part carbonless format.

PHOTO 3 - The photo on the left shows the Customer Satisfaction Delivery Procedure for our vintage Buicks. The photo on the right the newer mid-1990s version, also printed on a 3-part carbonless format. You can clearly see the similarities between the two versions.


I was told this story several years ago by Jay Frick, owner of Jay's GN. Jay worked at a Cadillac dealership in the mid 1980s. At the time, this dealership had a promotion on the new Yugos. If you bought a certain model Cadillac, you got a Yugo free. This was even documented in the book about Yugos. The Yugo had a price tag of $3,995 back in the mid-1980s.

It turns out one of the Cadillac customers buys the specific Cadillac and gets a Yugo as a bonus. He drives off in the Yugo only to return a while later saying the car stopped running. The mechanic goes out and tows it back to the shop only to find out the engine is completely seized solid. They replace the engine. The owner again drives it down the road and again returns saying the Yugo stopped running.

Once again the Yugo is towed back to the dealership and turns out the second engine is also seized. At this point the mechanics are baffled. They quiz the new owner to try and determine what caused both engines to seize up so quickly.

It turns out, he was a Cadillac owner, and none of the sales people informed him that the Yugo was a manual shift car! Back in the 1980s GM never produced a manual shift Cadillac like today. He simply over revved the Yugo in first gear!

True story. So, my point is, it is evident that neither of the featured forms we show in photo 2 or 3 were addressed to the Yugo owner, especially the section entitled, “Road Test.”


This custom-made upgraded plug-and-play H4 Headlight harness is a must have part for all the G-body cars, if you have any intentions of upgrading the stock headlight system to any of the newer H4 formats.

GM changed the wiring when they went to the 4" x 6" style headlights. Because of this, the stock wiring can cause problems with any H4 upgrade you decide to install. This harness will work with any GM car or truck that has the 4" x 6" rectangle headlight format. GM used this size headlight from the late 1970s and up on certain models.

That is why we offer the upgraded plug-and-play H4 headlight harness by itself. Also, since all the H4 bulbs are three prong, this harness has all 3-prong female plugs, unlike the stock harness that only has a two-prong female end for the high beam headlight. Without this harness, with any upgrade you would make, you would have to bend the center prong flat on the back of the new H4 bulb to make it fit the stock factory female connector.

The other benefit is this harness has two 80 amp relays, which enables you to go as high as 100 watts in the H4 format.

Each harness comes with full-color printed directions, making installation a simple easy project. Meaning those with limited mechanic skills, myself included, can accomplish this project with simple hand tools.

This upgraded plug-and-play H4 headlight harness will ONLY work if you are upgrading the stock headlights. It is not designed to work with the stock headlights. We had this kit wired specifically by our supplier to work with all the brighter H4 style headlights. It will not work with the HID, nor as a replacement for the stock sealed beam format.

This is the same upgraded plug-and-play H4 headlight harness that is in our personal Turbo-T. It does not matter what headlight upgrade you go with in the H4 format, you need a special harness to eliminate any possible issues of the headlight switch not being up to the task.

Here is a link to this headlight upgraded plug-and-play harness on our website:

PHOTO 4 - The photo shows a page from the directions showing the actual H4 headlight upgraded plug-and-play harness.

2013 GS NATIONALS - October 16-19, 2013 - Beech Bend Raceway, Bowling Green, KY -

This event marks the last major all-Buick event for 2013.

It will be the 26th year in a row that I have attended the GS Nationals, going back to the spring of 1988. We leased our 1987 Grand National in the fall of 1987. As the saying goes, the rest is history. We have seen a lot of vendors come and go during that 26-year span. Over the years we even managed to buy several Turbo Regals that were National winners at this event. Like many old timers, I remember the two big turbo racers in the early days - Lawrence Conley and, of course, Kenny Duttweiler.

On that trip I mentioned in last week's Inner Circle, I drove our Corvette and I stopped at Kenny's shop in California on way to Washington. I also crossed the intersection in northern California that James Dean crashed.

The GS Nationals is perhaps the one single place where you can see some of the most unusual T-Type or Turbo-T models against the usual array of black Grand Nationals, with a few GNXs in attendance as well. Like many car events, the nicer the weather, the better the turn out.

Unfortunately, each year the selection of used Turbo parts gets fewer and fewer. The days of some of the vendors coming from Michigan with original Buick literature are long gone. I was very fortunate to buy as much original Turbo Regal literature in the beginning as I could. Knowing it was the key to know what was fact, versus what I personally could remember.

I remember the first time I learned about the Turbo-T Limited. It was when one of my customers wanted to trade me his silver Turbo Limited with grey leather seats for a set of M & A casting aluminum heads and a few grand. I did the trade and the silver Turbo Limited became my second test car. This car also sported the black-out trim package, which was a nice combination. This was the first car I had that had as the license plate "A MOVER," which can be seen on one of our early design Turbo-T shirts that we used to get made.

This is the 33rd Annual consecutive event held at Beech Bend Raceway, 798 Beech Bend Road, Bowling Green, Kentucky.

Jim Bell, of Kenne-Bell fame, will be in attendance to present honorary car and race show awards to both V8 & V6 cars.

Also attending is Art Carr and his wife. Art is one of the top transmission specialists for many years.

Working on having the 2015 models of the new GNX and Grand National display along with a GM rep to hold a seminar on the car's development and performance capabilities.

"Nancy Huber, Program Engineering Manager for Buick Motor Division, will be attending the Nationals. She will be driving down in her manual shift 2014 Regal. Manual shift cars are something new to the Buick line, She will be highlighted at the event, and possibly will have more info for us on the production of the new Grand National and GNX.

She said she would be taking input from us back to Buick from us for possibly influencing what these two new models will include and made available to the public when these cars are finally manufactured and released for sale to the public."

For more info log onto - http://www.gsnationals.com/


We first mentioned Steve's book in the 9-25-2013 Inner Circle. The book is entitled, "Steve Magnante’s 1001 Muscle Car Facts."

I have been reading his book and have read the portion related to the Turbo Regals. I only found one small mistake in his facts and that is regarding the VD6 and VD7 aluminum bumper reinforcement supports. He says they came on all 1986-1987 Regal T-Types and Turbo-Ts and the heavier steel ones came on Grand Nationals, unless the buyer knew to check options VD6 and VD7.

This is partially not correct as all the T-Types and Turbo-Ts did not get the aluminum reinforcement supports. Having owned more than a few T-Types and Turbo-Ts, I know this for a fact.

Also, while a specific code VD6 and VD7 was assigned to the front and rear aluminum bumper reinforcement supports, they were not listed as an “option” in the Buick books. So, I don’t believe at the time of purchase, that this was something the sales people would ask a potential buyer. He does say it saves 35 pounds total over the steel ones. This is quite a weight savings, especially when coupled to T-Types and Turbo-Ts with aluminum wheels versus the Grand National chrome steel wheels.

The use of the aluminum reinforcement supports seems to be a gray area as to when they where used on our cars. He does state that Buick did make 50 stock appearing turbo aluminum hoods. I believe that to be true, as years ago I spoke to a customer who has one. That would be a rare feature to find today!

Earlier Regals, on selective 1978 Regals with the V8 option, the cars did have aluminum trunk lids to save weight. I had one of these cars years ago that had an aluminum trunk lid. It would have been nice if that feature carried over to the 1984-1987 Regals. Besides the weight advantage, it would have prevented rust issues around the rear lip area!

From Steve's book I have learned a few things that I was unaware of and will share more tidbits in weeks to come.


From the same source that I got the other turbo engine from and the GNX-style wheels, I now have another unusual part. I have the engine and transmission from a 1989 Turbo Trans Am that was stolen from a dealership when it was brand new. The car was set on fire. Mileage is only about 1,100 miles. Fire damage was limited to the top part, melting the cam sensor cap, all the wiring, and the plastic parts of the injectors. Engine is 95% complete with the transmission included. Headers, oil filter adapter and turbo are all there. It has been stored inside a tractor trailer for many years.

Using a socket, the crank turns with no real effort. The price is $1,595.00 I will not ship.

I may have it sold already. But, if you are interested, you can email me for photos - [email protected]

Remember, less than 1,100 actual miles on this drivetrain from a 1989 Turbo Trans Am.


Since Cardone has been out of parts, we have been out of Powermaster Brake Units and Brake Bowls for weeks.

Cardone has finally received their shipment of brake bowls and has geared up to start rebuilding our powermaster brake units again.

As you know, we supply most of the vendors with these units. So, you can expect your order with your supplier should be filled over the next several weeks.

We also expect to have our order of just the brake bowls available soon.


We recently bought out another company’s billet-style oil tube and breather assembly. This fits all the 1986-1987 Turbo Regal driver’s side valve cover. All billet construction with O-ring and a new chrome-plated top breather is included. Overall height is 4 inches. (See Inner Circle 08-14-2013 Photo 4)

We have about 20 of them at $34.95 each. You must call Christina - 215-766-1611 or email - [email protected] - to purchase this, since it has no part number and supplies are limited. The company has no plans to make this part again. It normally sold for over $40 each.


From the same supplier as the 4" x 6" rectangle G-body headlights we now sell, we have the same original looking headlights that are the 5-3/4" round glass H4 headlights. These are not on our website. We will have prices for them shortly. We also have a similar upgraded headlight plug-and-play harness for these headlights. This would enable you to upgrade to 100 watts in the H4 format, for the cars that use the 5-3/4" round headlights.

We also will have the 7" round headlights in the H4 format for the 12- volt car and trucks. Both the 5-3/4" round headlights and the 7" round headlights fit all makes and models, U.S. and foreign, from around 1955 through the mid 1980s, including cars and trucks. We are already starting to sell these other formats to other mail-order companies.

So basically, we have most of the market covered from 1955 and up for upgrading to H4 headlights that almost look stock. The upgraded headlight plug-and-play harness is also an upgrade, but unlike the one for the G-Body cars, the older cars can handle the 55/60 watt H4 headlights without the upgraded headlight plug-and-play headlight harness.

However, the upgraded headlight plug-and-play harness allows you to step up to 100 watts. Since all the H4 headlight bulbs are 3 prong, if you go with the upgraded headlight plug-and-play harness, all four plugs are three prong, so you do not need to bend down the center tab on the high beam H4 bulb.

You can email me direct - [email protected] - for more information and pricing on either format. I know many of you have older cars and trucks. These other two systems fit virtually every make and model, U.S. and foreign. The H4 headlight system really does a great job of lighting up the road at night while retaining a factory original appearance.

The part number for the H4 headlight upgrade for all the G-body cars is #7530 on our website. It's the best value you can spend that makes a world of difference for night driving.



Here is a clever sign for a car show display or to use as garage art.

One of the clever sayings associated with the Turbo Regals, and the Grand National in particular, is “BAD TO THE BONE.”

We have produced this familiar quote, “BAD TO THE BONE” BLVD on a green PVC material, making it appear like an actual street sign. Sign can be drilled if you want to hang it.

The size is 4" tall by 30" long.

Makes a great addition to a garage, office or as a gift to any Turbo Buick enthusiast.

7540 - “BAD TO THE BONE BLVD” Street Sign - $17.95

Here is the link to this Sign on our website:


2013 GS NATIONALS - October 16-19, 2013 - Beech Bend Raceway, Bowling Green, KY -

This event marks the last major all-Buick event for 2013. For more info log onto - http://www.gsnationals.com/

BOPAPALOOZA 2013 - November 2, 2013 - Atco Raceway, New Jersey -

Buick-Olds-Pontiac Show and Go, Saturday, November 2nd, 2013. Gates open 9:00 AM. Show registration until 12 noon. Day of event rain info - 856-768-2167. Location is Atco Raceway, Jackson Road, Atco, New Jersey.

For more show info, call Tom at 856-524-2588 or email [email protected]

Race Information - call 856-768-2167 - www.atcoraceway.com

I know Tom personally, as he is the editor of the GTO THE LEGEND, which is the GTO National club monthly publication. I often contribute articles for their publication.


If you have any product ideas that would fit our Turbo Buick market that you would like to see available, email me direct - [email protected]


Got any turbo parts you are not using? Why not cash them in for parts you need with a Letter of Credit. Simply email me a list - [email protected]

Also, we are still buying dead or partially dead 1984-1987 Turbo Regals under $4,000 that are within 250 to 350 miles of our location.

NOTE ABOUT PHOTOS ON THE WEBSITE - We have heard from a couple people that have viewed the photos on the website. Because these have to be low-resolution photos to work on the Inner Circle segments on the website, any photos of text don't appear clear when enlarged. This is a problem when you are trying to see numbers, such as those on the VIN labels or pages from Options booklet. Also, because of photo reproduction and computer screen variations, the colors may not be true to the actual product or photo.

If you would like to have us email you any photo at the higher resolution for viewing, just email us and we will email them to you. Be sure to be specific on which pictures you want to see - Reference Inner Circle date and photo number 1, 2, 3 or 4 - [email protected]


Any inquiries concerning used parts, you must email me direct - [email protected] - I will answer you. However, if I fail to answer you within 24 hours, please email us again. Since expanding into used parts, I get a lot of emails and sometimes I may forget your request or may not remember who requested the item.


Because of the GS Nationals this week, we did not list any of our used or rare parts in this issue. The listing of our used or rare parts will return next week. Hope to see you there.