02-26-2014 Inner Circle

02-26-2014 Inner Circle

Greetings Turbo Regal Inner Circle Members 02-26-2014


I am still researching the various options for the parts that connect from the main steering shaft to the actual gear box.

The replacement part is the factory steering coupler better known as the "rag joint." We now have these available with directions. (See listing under new products).

That is one possible option. The next obvious option is a reproduction of the entire lower steering shaft, complete with the plastic cover that surrounds the lower steering coupler. My research has found two different suppliers of this part. We have one of these in route to us to examine. We project the price of this to be around $139.95. The other version of this part retails for about $179.95. The original GM one is long gone from the GM parts system.

Another option is to replace the lower steering shaft with one from a Jeep or another vehicle that has a metal swivel joint instead of the fabric-like coupler found in the Regals. I thought I had located a reasonable source for these upgraded lower steering shafts. I ordered one based on what vintage I thought was correct. The internet is a great source for information, however as you know from various threads and postings, when it comes to whispering down the lane mistakes can be made. I ordered what I thought was the correct lower steering shaft only to find out it did not fit. I now have ordered another lower steering shaft with the hopes it is correct and will interchange on the Turbo Regals.

Watch for update on this, possibly by the beginning of March. The plan is to be able to offer this upgraded lower steering shaft at a reasonable price and also be able to offer refurbished ones as well.

PHOTO 1 - Shows a 1984-1987 Turbo Regal original lower steering shaft with the plastic sleeve pulled up to expose the steering coupler. Under the original lower steering shaft there is a refurbished one from a Jeep. It has the better metal swivel joints at both ends and allows more room under the hood on the driver's side. (See Rare Parts from us for availability).

I am also working with a supplier to supply us with a quantity of refurbished upgraded lower steering shafts. What I have found out is several versions have the metal coupler design and it’s not just found in Jeeps. The key is finding them cheap enough and in quantity to ship them to this source to refurbish them and modify as needed. While cheaper options exist I only want to deal with ones that have been refurbished and are complete. Ours will have fully detailed directions with them. The reason is one version needs to be clocked 90 degrees and reassembled which my supplier will do. The Jeep ones have some sort of bushing that should be removed and cleaned as it can hold moisture. I feel the market we sell to would be best served with ones that are already refurbished and restored.


In the midst of doing this research, I made another discovery that involves the bearing located at the base of the main steering column. This bearing was basically used from 1969 to the mid-1990s. To my knowledge, 1969 was the first year GM went to the locking steering column.

What is interesting is, the parts are listed in the 44W book for our Regals. The kit is made up of four parts: A retainer, adapter, clip, and the actual bearing. What is interesting is in our cars (1984-1987 Turbo Regals) GM did not use a metal ball bearing, but instead attached a rubber seal on both ends of the plastic adapter! Yet the part number in the 44W book is for the metal ball bearing.

The four related parts, which includes the bearing, are still available from GM today and would run over $100 retail for all four parts. The metal ball bearing is GM part #7805700. The reason you want all the other three related parts is because, in some cases, you may break the plastic adapter that the bearing sits in. You could also bend the retainer, and have the clip disappear forever under your car. From what I have been able to determine, most of the later GM vehicles used the better ball bearing. One reason I know this is I have seen posts about this on various forums. I have also seen used ones for sale. The 1969 through 1982 Corvettes all call for the same metal ball bearing.

This is a critical part you will want to have on hand because to install it you have to remove the lower steering shaft. This bearing kit can be installed without removing the main steering column. This part is not yet on our website, part #7572. The price is $37.95. It's a reproduction of all four of the related parts including the metal ball bearing. GM list price is over $100 for the four related parts. This new bearing kit is now in stock when you call.

PHOTO 2 - The photo on the left shows the base of the main steering column. The bearing is held in place by a clip around the metal retainer. In the photo on the right we have removed the original bearing. The two rubber seals are still attached to the plastic adaptor, which we have indicated with an arrow. This plastic adapter was originally bright white!

You can actually check your own steering column as the edge of the rubber seal is visible or, if by some stroke of luck, you may see a metal ball bearing. I checked our personal 1987 Turbo-T and poked it with a thin flat-bladed screw driver. Our car does have the rubber seal design. If you have a rubber seal instead of the ball bearing, you will want this four piece bearing kit to have on hand. Until you remove the lower steering shaft I don’t believe you can really tell if the main steering shaft exhibits any end play. Regardless, a metal ball bearing is superior to two rubber seals on a plastic adapter!

PHOTO 3 - The photo on the left we show the new bearing kit installed on the steering column. Note how bright white the adapter appears in this photo. Your original one is probably so black and yellow, that you may not realize it is plastic. You can see the bottom portion of the metal bearing as it rides on the shaft. In the photo on the right across the top are the four new parts that make up this lower bearing kit for the main steering column. This is our new kit part #7572. The lower row shows the bearing kit I removed from a used steering column. The two rubber-like seals are replaced by the metal bearing shown above it in the top row. We have indicated the two rubber seals with arrows. The metal ball bearing replaces those two rubber seals. You can clearly see the parts are the same with the only difference being a metal ball bearing is used in place of the two rubber seals that merely attached to the plastic adapter.

What is interesting is, the part number for the ball bearing is the same part number that appears in the 1991 Buick 44W Book. What the Regals appeared to get was the rubber seals instead of a steel ball bearing. This new reproduction kit will fit virtually every GM car from 1969 thru 1995.

It seems there is always something to learn, even 25 years later. We already started to sell these to one of the major Corvette companies.


At a dealership near me is a customize 1978 Buick Regal coupe. It is a two-owner car and the second owner did all or most of the modifications himself, including the paint job. While the car is not exactly my cup of tea, I can fully appreciate the amount of time and work the owner went through. From my prospective, it’s a shame he did not leave the car stock.

I saw the build sheet for this car. It is a factory T-Tops car with a half-padded roof. Perhaps the most unusual option was it was a four-speed car! It is now a five-speed manual shift car, bolted up to a rebuilt 1968 Pontiac straight 6-cylinder engine.

The car is at local Buick-GMC-Cadillac dealership and I have the salesperson's email and phone number. If the car strikes your interest, I can get this car at a great deal for you. They want to move it to a new home. Most dealers work on a 60-day window regarding used cars… meaning after 60 days of occupying space, they want to move the car out.

PHOTO 4 - The top left photo shows an overview picture of the two-tone paint scheme. The top right photo shows a close-up of the Firebird hood scoop the owner molded into the hood. The bottom left photo shows the newly rebuilt 1968 Pontiac six cylinder engine. The bottom right shows the shifter. The small pad to the left of the console the owner has a plate showing the shifter pattern and a gauge also is mounted.

I was stumped as to what the console came out of and the bucket seats. The seats are from a Grand Jeep Cherokee and the console is from a Mercury Sable. It does have a Firebird rear spoiler on the back. This car does have an aluminum rear deck lid. (Years ago we had a real nice white 1978 Regal coupe with the plush blue interior.) The car rides on brand new 16-inch tires with Camaro Iroc rims that have been redone as well. I believe the car originally was blue. A box of receipts totally over $12,000 goes with the car. I doubt that total includes the many hours this past owner has put into the car. Being a factory manual shift car, it would have been nice to put a small V8 in front of it instead of what now is probably an outdated six-cylinder engine non-fuel injected.

If this car strikes your interest, email me personally - [email protected] They are seeking $5985 for the car. I am sure I can get buyer a better deal. The manager was hoping I was a buyer as he knew who I was! I think the owner traded it for a left over 2013 pickup truck.


I can’t claim to be a fanatic watcher of the Olympic Winter Games. However, in the 5,000 meter short track relay, one of the participants hails from the small town of Kintnersville, Pennsylvania, which is where we live. His name is Chris Creveling and John Hall (who works for us) knows him. The U.S. team took the silver medal in that event.

What I did find interesting was that BMW, one of the top German car companies, redesigned the two-man bobsled team for U.S. The bobsleds are valued at far more than the brand new 7 series BMWs. The bobsleds are made from carbon fiber, which BMW has extensive knowledge. Besides being a great PR move, I find it interesting that they got involved rather than work with their homeland country. I don’t follow the various politics involved, but that bit of information struck me as being an unusual gesture.

Italy, on the other hand, has Ferrari designed their bobsleds and Great Britain uses McLaren designed bobsleds. So, if you ever see one from any of these bobsleds from any of these countries on Craig's list for sale, they would be worth a sizeable amount of money!

February 28 - March 2, 2014 - Atlantic City Convention Center

The Atlantic City Classic Car Show is the next big event in our immediate area. The event runs from February 28th thru March 2nd. Times run from 9 am until 8 pm nightly. Besides several hundred vendors, cars of interest will be auctioned off each of the three days. I have not been to this event since they built the new convention center in Atlantic City. I hope to attend this year.


This 1987 Grand National For Sale is located in Georgia and has just under 21,000 actual miles. It has factory T-Tops and runs out extremely nice. The current owner only put about 500 miles on it since buying it over a year ago.

The car is a two-owner car and has always been garaged. The current owner replaced the radiator, headliner, powermaster brake unit, as well as the brake proportioning valve. He also had a complete tune-up done.

The reason he is selling is they are expecting a baby. We originally handled this deal when the car was owned previously in New Jersey. The car does have some minor paint issues and needs a few things done to be perfect. It needs a power antenna, A/C charged, front bumper fillers, and the radio repaired. The price is $17,900.

For more info, contact me at - [email protected]


If you have a tip or a discovery that you found that works on your Turbo Regal, drop us an email giving us the details so we can pass the info on to our readers. Remember, even with my knowledge, I don’t know it all. Simply email me at - [email protected]


We are looking at upgrading one of our cars. This may interest one of our local customers. Car is a 2002 Pontiac Grand Prix coupe with the 3800 engine. It is not the supercharged version. We are the second owner. Garaged and never smoked in. Silver with a grey cloth interior. Car is absolutely show quality inside and out. Coupes are very hard to find in nice condition with good miles on them.

I looked at several before purchasing this one. Car has new Hankook tires, new powder-coated brake rotors, new brake pads, new GM HD front and rear sway bars, new headlights, new tail lights, just to name a few upgrades. Car has most of the major options, except for the supercharger and sunroof. Has a clean Car Fax with only 65,000 original miles. Latest PA inspection, and runs and drives 100%. Nothing inside or out shows even a hint of any wear issues. Wheels are perfect. Everything works. Buyer gets all my records related to the car. Looking for $4,995 or best offer. You would be hard pressed to find a cleaner example. I rather sell it outright than use it as a trade.

For more details and photos, email me direct at - dennisk[email protected]


We will soon be placing an order for a skid of the rear and front Spoolfool fillers. If you are planning to come to our Open House in April by calling now you can reserve one of Spoolfools rear fillers. The one-piece rear filler fits 1981 through 1987 Regal models. This will save you anywhere from $70 to $85 in shipping costs! Do not miss this great opportunity that can save you anywhere from $70 to $85 in shipping costs. It is important to call Christina as soon as possible to reserve a Spoolfool rear one-piece and or his front two-piece fillers - 215-766-1611

By the way, Christina has just celebrated her 14th year with our company!


1977-1988 GM A-Body & G-Body Cars including Buick Turbo Regal -

This reproduction steering coupler is for power steering applications only.

The original steering coupler (rag joint) can become sloppy over years of use or if any engine fluids have spilled on it.

The original GM steering coupler is part of the lower steering shaft. It is not a separate serviceable part from GM. It may not be visible because of the plastic collar, which surrounds the lower steering shaft.

This cover can be unclipped and pushed upward to expose the steering coupler. In order to install this new steering coupler, you need to remove the lower steering shaft and grind off the two drive pins holding the original coupler to the upper flange that is pressed onto the lower steering shaft.

Replacing the original steering coupler (rag joint) is the least expensive option to restore the steering and eliminate any play related to a weak or sloppy steering coupler.

It comes with easy-to-follow directions.

Another great steering restoration item.

NOTE - We also offer a related item - 1984-1987 Buick Turbo Regal, Rebuilt Power Steering Gear Box, Part #7380.

NOTE - If you need a steering coupler for another GM car or truck, contact our office, 215-766-1611. We have a complete list of all the vehicles this steering coupler fits, which includes most GM cars from 1977 thru 1995 and most GM trucks from 1982 through 2002. This includes: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, Oldsmobile, and Pontiac.

7569 - 1977-1988 GM A-Body & G-Body Cars including Buick Turbo Regal -
Reproduction Steering Coupler - $36.95

Here is a link to this Steering Coupler on our website:

1984-1987 Buick Turbo Regal -

Over time, the door pull straps deteriorate, crack or fade, especially on the driver’s side. All the 1987 Grand Nationals had grey pull straps. The earlier years had black pull straps.

We offer reproduction replacements in black #7570 or grey #7571.

These are sold as a set of two. Since the original straps may have faded or discolored over the years, you should replace both at the same time.

NOTE - We also offer 1984-1987 Turbo Regal - Reproduction Strap Caps. We only offer them in a set of 2 (Part #6977) or set of 4 (Part #6978). Each door takes 2 caps.

If you are having the interior restored, this is the perfect time to replace the door pull straps.

Another great interior restoration item.

7570 - 1984-1987 Buick Turbo Regal - Reproduction BLACK Door Pull Straps (2) Set - $48.95 / set

7571 - 1984-1987 Buick Turbo Regal - Reproduction GREY Door Pull Straps (2) Set - $48.95 / set

Here is the link for these Door Pull Straps on our website: http://www.kirbanperformance.com/products.php?search_text=7570&submit_button=

1984-1987 Buick Regal (2-Door Models)Spoolfool Hand-laid FiberglassTwo-Piece FRONT Black Bumper Filler Panels and 1981-1987 Buick Regal One-Piece REAR Black Bumper Filler

NOTE - These fit all two-door Regal models from 1984 through the 1987 Regal models, including all the 1984-1987 Turbo Regals.

Over time, the front and rear bumper fillers may deteriorate.

The front body bumper fillers are the flexible parts located between the front bumper and the front portion of the car on either side of the grille opening. Over the years, original front body bumper filler extensions can crack and crumble due to heat and age. They can also lose their shape and droop.

The factory original GM front body bumper fillers are no longer available. The original GM version had 2 pieces; a left and a right.

The rear bumper filler is located between the back bumper and the rear body panel.

The factory original GM rear body bumper filler is no longer available.

We offer reproductions from Spoolfool Filler panels, made in the U.S.A.

Mike Bernard owner of Spoolfool crafted the unique one-piece rear bumper filler from scratch and did about 90% of the work himself. He has over 200 hours into making the prototype. Every square inch has been created from scratch or created from an original set of the two-piece design.

Spoolfool bumper fillers are made from hand-laid fiberglass in the U.S.A. Due to the nature of these materials, small imperfections; pits, scratches, air bubbles, etc. are to be expected and are normal for this type of product. These fillers come in a gloss black gelcoat. The gelcoat is meant to be painted over; however, many customers are happy with how they look right out of the box. While the color may not be a perfect match, it may get you by until you're ready to paint the whole car. All products are pre-drilled and ready to install. The gelcoat finish is such a high quality that some owners simply install the fillers without having them painted. If you decide to paint these fillers, no flex agent is needed.

Some holes may need to be slightly elongated, as every car is unique from the factory.

Mike has had great success with his one-piece rear bumper filler design, which eliminates the overlap design that Buick had with the original two-piece design. The unique rear filler one-piece design gives the back end of your car a cleaner look. Mike had a real passion for this project, since he also owns a Grand National. He has been producing these filler since the summer of 2012.

All his fillers are pre-drilled from his templates. Since all the holes are pre-drilled, the fit is excellent. These reproductions attach exactly like the originals using all the same original attaching hardware. Once installed, these fillers look identical to the originals. The difference is the rear filler is one piece.

NOTE - For more info, search out the fillers on - www.turbobuick.com - website. There are also 2 videos on YouTube -


Or you can search "SPOOLFOOL’S FIBERGLASS" on YouTube.

Because of the size of the one-piece rear filler, shipping is based on the oversized box. Shipping can be adjusted if two rear one-piece filler panels can be shipped at the same time as two will fit in a single box. Filler panels are made in the U.S.A.

ORDERING NOTE - In order to compute the proper shipping costs, you must contact our office to order any of these 3 parts - 215-766-1611. These are currently drop-shipped from California.

NOTE - We recommend these be installed by a qualified body shop.

7566 - 1984-1987 Buick Regal (2-Door Models) Spoolfool Hand-laid Fiberglass Two-Piece FRONT Black Bumper Filler Panels - $320

7567 - 1981-1987 Two Door Regal (2-Door Models) Spoolfool Hand-laid Fiberglass One-Piece REAR Black Bumper Filler - $370

7568 - 1984-1987 Buick Regal (2-Door Models) Spoolfool Hand-laid Fiberglass Two-Piece FRONT Black Bumper Filler Panels and Spoolfool Hand-laid Fiberglass One-Piece 1981-1987 Regal REAR Black Bumper Filler - $650 (save $40)

NOTE - We also offer other front and rear bumper filler panels. Check out our other Part numbers - #7152, #7067, #7440, 7438, and #7439.

Here is a link to these new Bumper Filler Panels on our website:


KIRBAN PERFORMANCE OPEN HOUSE - SATURDAY - APRIL 12, 2014 - 2014 - RAIN or SHINE - 9 am until 3 pm

We will have our usual program, including a freshly prepared lunch by chef Russ and Nancy doing all the cooking. Our usual M & M contest, a no reserve auction, Free Yum Yums donuts in the AM with coffee. Special sale prices and new products will be on display.

CONFIRMED VENDORS & GUESTS - Chris’ Custom Apparel, who has a full line of Turbo Buick clothing will be set up. Pete Hoffman will have parts for sale, and I will also have used parts for sale (known as the "tagged and bagged" sale items). Coming for the first time is Bruce Shaw - a lawyer and accountant specializing in Collector Car Fraud. Terry Shaw specializes in collector car appraisals and insurance claims will also be there. Both Terry Shaw and Bruce Shaw will be doing a seminar. So be sure to put this event on your calendar.

More information will follow later this Spring. This is one of the first major events of 2014 for the Turbo Regal owner. Don't miss it.

Here is a link to this information on our website:


The local Magna Club has posted events related to the Turbo Regals for this coming summer season.

Here is a link for the latest information:

GS NATIONALS - OCTOBER 15-18, 2014 -
Beech Bend Raceway, 798 Beech Bend Road, Bowling Green, Kentucky

Ron Joseph informs me that the dates for the 2014 GS Nationals are October 15th thru 18th. The intent to move it to September has been shelved at least for a year, according to Ron. We will share more info as it becomes available. Also for the first time ever there will be an auto cross open to all cars October 15th and 16th. 2014. This year ALL vehicles are welcome to participate and have some fun, prizes will be given away and sponsors will be there!

Click here for more info:


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 Buick 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.


We have heard from a couple people that have had problems with the links in our Inner Circle.

When we check the links, they work fine. However, if you are not able to be directed to the exact website page or internet site, you can "copy" and "paste" the link into the URL in your browser (such as Safari, Firefox, Google Chrome, etc.) If it doesn't link in one browser, it may work in another.


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.


As kids we played dodge ball in school. This winter we are using our vehicles to play "dodge the pot holes" on the highways. I wonder how big the potholes have to be to be called craters? Someone needs to create an app that would show where all the potholes are!