05-28-2014 Inner Circle

05-28-2014 Inner Circle

Greetings Turbo Regal Inner Circle Members 05-28-2014


Last week we gave some of the history on the T-Tops. It was during the 1970s and 1980s that T-Tops enjoyed the most popularity on American cars. In the 1970s it was the Firebirds and Camaros that received most of the T-Tops. During the 1980s, besides the F-body cars the Monte Carlos and, of course, the Turbo Regals got most of the T-Tops. Whether you love them or hate them, almost without question you can count on T-Tops developing a water leak at some point of ownership, unless the car never gets wet.

PHOTO 1 - The top left photo shows a Hurst Hatch decal. The top right photo shows a clear Hurst Hatch decal that would have been applied to an original set of Hurst Hatches. The bottom left photo shows a Hurst Hatch Authorized Dealer decal and the bottom right photo shows a certificate that would have been filled out once a technician had completed their training. I think it’s fairly safe to assume all the Hurst Hatches were the same size, which would account for the different widths above the windshield between various car models. From a manufacturing standpoint, it makes more sense to have the T-Tops all the same size.

PHOTO 2 - Shows the Installation Instructions for the installing the Hurst Hatches. This is an interesting Installation manual. In the space of just 24 pages, it shows you step-by-step how to dismantle the interior headliner area and, using a supplied template, actually cut the roof to install the Hurst Hatches. Talk about a delicate job and one that requires double checking your measurements… this is one such job! It would have been interesting to see how this was handled on the Regal assembly line. Perhaps, because so many were produced, it was a stamping that was done on the roofs?


About two weeks ago, for the first time I went to this one yard that is not a You Pull It Yard. However, the owner lets you walk in the yard, if they have something you are specifically interested in. As it turns out, I bought the owner's 1987 Grand National about a dozen years ago for $18,000 so he remembered me. He must have had a super nice Grand National since I paid $18 grand for it.

PHOTO 3 - In this top left photo is a 1930s vintage Chevrolet truck front end that was just sitting on the ground in this yard that caught my eye. I went back the following week and bought it. The top right photo shows the Chevrolet truck front end in our one shrubbery bed. I like to think I have given the truck a new lease on life! In this same salvage yard, alongside the 1930s Chevy truck, were two rows of old cars. The bottom left shows a real 1957 Chevrolet Nomad. While obviously it’s too far gone to be restored, it makes you wonder what kind of shape it was in when it got dumped in the yard years ago? Near it were two or three other 1957 Chevrolet station wagons. The bottom right photo shows several early 1970s vintage Camaros.

1974 CAMARO Z28 -

Since this particular salvage yard was not a You Pull It Yard, many of the vehicles are still intact. The parts that have been removed have been done carefully. While I was looking over the older cars I ran into a guy that was traveling from Florida delivering a car to New Jersey. Turns out he knew me and is on the various Buick and Pontiac forums. He is more into the V8 Buicks. While we were talking, we started to look over this 1974 Z28 Camaro.

PHOTO 4 - The top left photo shows the front end of this badly faded 1974 Z28 Camaro. The top right photo shows the portion of the rear spoiler sitting on the ground by the driver’s door. The bottom left photo shows a completely untouched 350 engine. All the smog parts are intact. The correct quadrajet appears to be there, as is the dual snorkel air cleaner! Even the finned valve covers are still on the engine. The bottom right photo is another view of the engine. I do not know all the details yet, but it could possibly be a 4-bolt main. Even all the brake lines and the brake portioning valve was still intact by the master cylinder. The engine is for sale. As of this writing I do not have all the details yet and, if the transmission is there, does that go with it? I can’t remember if the rear end was still in the car or not. I was pushed for time as the yard closes promptly at noon on Saturday. If you or if you know someone seeking a 1974 Camaro Z28 350 engine, email me [email protected] I should have more details later this week.


Here is an opportunity to own a Grand National that was used in a TV series. It's advertised on Craigs List. Here is a link to the ad - http://jerseyshore.craigslist.org/cto/4476900382.html


Ironically, our good friend Cecil (who owns the local restaurant we eat at every day) thought he had a 1966 back in 1966-1967. Actually, he had a 1963 triple black used 1963 Bonneville.

Late last week we heard from a one of our long-time customers, Mike Pilotti, who located a triple black 1963 Bonneville that was only about two hours from us. It was an original California car with no rust, ever.

Cecil went the following day and bought the 1963 Bonneville convertible, which is identical to the car he owned in 1966. He is very happy since he has some fond memories of his original car. Watch for photos next week!


Unfortunately, we don’t have room this week to post any photos of either of them.

One is a 1992 Dodge conversion van. This was one they built back in the day with the pop-up center area for sleeping. You don’t see many of these any more in good shape. This one appears very nice and is priced at $4900.

I also know where a Crosley station wagon is for sale. This cute little station wagon is very restorable and can be bought for just under $4,000. I think some lawn mowers today have bigger engines than this Crosley. If either vehicle strikes your interest, email me for more info - [email protected]


We need your input if you have changed over to a dual fan format to cool the engine. I would like to know what year and what car model dual fan format fits the best to the stock radiator and can easily be adapted to the stock wiring harness. Since I go to various You Pull It Yards, I may be able to find some of these dual fan setups, which would provide better cooling.


We are still doing research and ordering some of the parts we will be offering, besides having complete kits available. We already have rebuilt original 1984-1985 Turbo Regal Hydro-boost units in stock. The two pressure lines for the 1984-1985 Hydro-boost systems and we also have the reproduction foam gasket that sits between the Hydro-boost unit and the firewall in stock. It’s the same foam gasket that is used in the 1986-1987 Turbo Regals with the power master units. None of these items are on our website as of yet. We will have these individual parts on our website next week. To learn more about converting your 1986-1987 Turbo Regal to the Hydro-boost format, go to turbobuick.com, Scroll down to the Turbo Lounge and look for my thread entitled, "Kirban Request."

Here is a direct link - http://turbobuick.com/forums/threads/kirban-request.411950/page-1


We are one of the few companies that accept items in partial trade towards parts you may want. If you have any NOS Turbo Regal parts or cores that we can use, email me direct - [email protected] You can save money against the GNX wheels. Sometimes it’s easier to trade in parts you are not using and get something you want for your car in return.

I remember years ago, that is how I got our second test car - the 1987 silver Limited with the black-out package. The seller wanted a set of the new M&A Casting aluminum heads and money for his Limited. He wanted to put the new M&A Casting aluminum heads on his Grand National. I think the M&A Casting heads back then were around $2,500. We had one of the first sets on our Grand National years ago. Back then, I had no idea Buick even made a Limited Turbo model. The GNX wheels not only look good on a black Turbo Regal, but equally as nice on a white or a silver one as well.


The new reproduction GNX-style wheels are now in stock for immediate delivery. Our first skid of wheels arrived late last week. The quality is excellent. See our Part #7219 on our website. Our back orders have been filled and we have a few sets still available before we have to order more.

This version has the zero offset, which means it is the correct offset to fit under the stock fenders of any 1984-1987 Turbo Regal. They are clear coated. Our kit comes with everything included. That means 4 wheels, 4 center caps, 4 GNX reproduction decals, 20 of the correct two-piece lug nuts, and 4 chrome valve stems.

Keep in mind that we also are interested in buying back your original Grand National wheels, if they are nice. You may want to do so to get back some of your costs, rather than have them sit in your garage or basement. Not many owners go back to 15 inch wheels and tires after they have 16 inch on their cars!

Here is the link to these wheels on our website:


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]


Currently we have a quantity of both the rears and fronts in stock for immediate delivery. If you reside near Pennsylvania, shipping on the rear one-piece Spoolfool filler is not that bad. It would run probably around $55 to $60, depending on your zip code.

The Spoolfool front fillers would be reasonable to ship anywhere in the U.S.A. as they are not oversized. Shipping has already been absorbed in getting them from Mike, the supplier in California, to our Pennsylvania location. Call our office for ordering - 215-766-1611 x 0.



We will have Part #7054, 1986-1987 Turbo Regal - Reproduction Air Flow Duct (from turbo to MAF sensor/air cleaner) in stock by mid June. Our supplier needed a bigger order from us to continue to make this unique hose with the stronger material. However, they did locate some additional inventory, which we will have soon.

The GM hose has been discontinued for over a year. The few sources that do have it sell them for $55 or more. This is a very unique hose. Our hose is superior material and fits the exact same way. The price will be $39.95 plus shipping.

1978-1987 Buick Regal (All G-Body Models including Turbo Regal) -

This is another part that can cause play in the steering over a period of time.

This new idler arm is made in the U.S.A.
In comparison to an original idler arm assembly, this one is slightly thicker, so it is stronger.

Some companies offer a bushing kit for almost as much money as you can buy the entire idler arm from us.

NOTE - Check out a related 1987 item, Part #7223, 1987 Turbo Regal - Reproduction Idler Arm Labels (2) Set

Another great suspension restoration item.

7594 - 1978-1987 Buick Regal (All G-Body Models including Turbo Regal) -
Aftermarket Idler Arm Assembly - $31.95

Here is a link to this Idler Arm Assembly on our website:


This heavy-duty rear motor brace is custom made by RJC Racing, home of the 2002-2003-2004 GS Nationals TSM Class Winner.

The brace was designed and manufactured by Jason in billet steel, and then powder coated black. The unique design allows the load of the motor to be on the rear of the engine, instead of the narrowest point by the engine mounts.

It is designed to support the block in high HP applications and to help the motor stay in place during hard acceleration and high-load situations. This simple device bolts into existing holes. It is very effective and does not transmit vibration into the driver’s/passenger side compartment.

In an extreme test, they used a Turbo Regal with bad motor mounts. With 2 lbs of boost, the motor shifted by about 4 inches. With no other changes (other than installing this adjustable rear motor brace) at 10 lbs of boost, the motor barely moved a 1/4 of an inch.

There is no vibration felt with this system, because of the rubber snubber at the one point. It is totally adjustable, so you can make it even stiffer for race conditions yet be totally streetable. This rear motor brace will also cut down on false knock sensor readings and puts less stress on the factory engine mounts. Since it is powder coated black, it will not rust.

This 1984-1987 Turbo Regal rear motor brace comes with all the necessary hardware and instructions.

The brace attaches to the bell housing on the driver’s side, using the longer bolts and adjustable snubber (supplied with the brace.) It rests against the bottom part of the frame as shown in Photo B.

Photo C shows how the rear motor brace bolts to the bell housing.

NOTE - This is the heavy-duty version, not to be confused with the earlier RJC rear motor brace we used to sell.

NOTE - If you are interested in this part, you may also want to consider Part #6891 Engine Mounts (2), or #6941 Rear Transmission Mount.

An excellent upgrade to cure the problem of engine movement under acceleration.

7592 - 1984-1987 Buick Turbo Regal -
RJC Heavy-Duty Rear Motor Brace - $119.95

Here is the link to the Rear Motor Brace on our website:

1978-1988 All G-Body 2-Door Hardtop Models
Including 1984-1987 Buick Turbo Regal -

These roof rail weatherstrips fit all two-door hardtop models only.

This is a reproduction of the weatherstrip that runs along the pillar post, across the base of the roof and down the back edge of the door glass opening.

Because of the age of these cars, in order to have tight door seals, these may need to be replaced.

NOTE - When purchasing this item you may also want to consider #7425 Reproduction Molded Door Seals (2), #7217 Outside Door Sill Weatherstrips (2), or #7146 Original, Used Door Window Blow-Out Clip.

Another excellent replacement for any exterior restoration.

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

7593 - 1978-1988 All G-Body 2-Door Hardtop Models, Including 1984-1987 Buick Turbo Regal -

Reproduction Roof Rail Weatherstrips (2) Set - $97.95 / 2-piece set

Here is the link to these Roof Rail Weatherstrips on our website:

1986-1987 Buick Turbo Regal -

Buick used hose clamps that were finished in black oxide for the three intercooler hoses (6 clamps), the mass air hose and rubber elbow to the factory air cleaner assembly (4 clamps). These are the correct size clamps for the proper application, a total of 10 clamps.

We offer a kit for each or you can save a few dollars and buy both kits, so all the clamps are a matched set.

The intercooler clamp set is ideal to use with our OEM-style heavy-duty hoses, Part #7553, since that hose kit is an exact match to the original material Buick used on the intercooler hoses (the only difference is these hoses are slightly thicker.)

Black oxide is a chemical process and not a coating. The same company that does our chrome plating also has the necessary equipment to do the black oxide process.

NOTE - The clamp set for the intercooler hoses will also work with Part #7458 Intercooler and Turbo Heavy-Duty Hoses (3) Set, and Part #7553 Stock Appearing Intercooler and Turbo Heavy-Duty Hoses (3) Set, and Part #7045 Rebuilt Original AC DELCO Mass Air Flow Sensor.

NOTE - If you need any extra clamps, email our office for pricing - [email protected]

Another great engine restoration part to return your car back to original.

7578 - 1986-1987 Buick Turbo Regal -
OEM-Style Black Oxide Hose Clamps (6) Set for Intercooler and Turbo - $22.95 / set

7579 - 1986-1987 Buick Turbo Regal -
OEM-Style Black Oxide Hose Clamps (4) Set for Mass Air Hose and Air Cleaner Elbow - $16.95 / set

7580 - 1986-1987 Buick Turbo Regal -
OEM-Style Black Oxide Hose Clamps (10) Set for Intercooler, Turbo, Mass Air Hose and Air Cleaner Elbow - $34.95 / set (save $4.95)

Here are these clamps on our website:

1984-1987 Regal GNX/TRANS AM STYLE 16” x 8” WHEELS (4) SET

Click on this link below for full details. Remember, of you want to buy a set from this current skid, you need to contact our office - 215-766-1611 x 0. You would not be charged until we ship you the wheels. Another skid will be ordered shortly.

1984-1987 Regal -

These GNX - TRANS AM style wheels have the black mesh center and are 16"″ x 8"″ with the proper offset to fit under the wheel wells of the 1984-1987 Regals. These resemble the popular original GNX wheels. This version has the zero offset. Do not confuse this with the version we have sold in the past, known as “Kirban-Style” GNX wheels.

These wheels are manufactured with brand new tooling and are clear coated. Wheels have the proper offset to fit under the fenders. We sell these as a complete set of 4 wheels, 20 correct lug nuts, 20 lug nut black caps, 4 chrome-plated valve stems, 4 black center caps, and 4 reproduction “GNX” center cap decals.

The original center caps on the original GNX were actually the existing Trans Am caps. GM simply affixed the “GNX” paper decal over the Trans Am medallion. This set includes the reproduction “GNX” Decals (4) Set, Part #7113.

If you own a 1984, 1985, or 1986 Turbo Regal, the GM front springs on these years were a different spring rate. You will need to change the front springs to avoid having the tires rub when you go over bumps. We recommend our front springs, Part #6566. If you plan on carrying heavy items in the trunk or four friends, we recommend you upgrade the rear springs to our variable rate rear springs, Part #1520 on any 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987 Regal.

For shocks, the best ones you can buy are the Bilsteins to further improve the ride quality of your Turbo Regal. The overall height is actually slightly less than what is currently on the car. The speedometer is not affected.

Originally the GNX used 245/50s by 16s up front and 255/50s by 16 in the rear. For best results, we recommend going with 245/50s on the fronts and the backs. Depending on the year Turbo Regal and what suspension upgrades you have made, we do not recommend the larger 255/50s for the rear. However, if you want to go with 255/50s in the rear, trial fit these wheels first to be sure you have enough clearance.

The good news is these wheels will look pretty much dead on with the mesh black center that matches the original GNX mesh center. They are 100% brand new and weigh about 18 lbs each. Of all the available optional wheels, these are the most desirable and can really enhance your pride and joy.

Keep in mind, we will take good used original Grand National wheels in partial trade. This can help save you some money, since you also need to buy new tires.

Shipping generally costs about $65-$125, but we are offering a flat rate of $59.95 for shipping to any of the 48 contiguous states. Call for shipping for other states or Canada - 215-766-1611 x 0.

7219 - 1984-1987 Regal -
GNX / TRANS AM STYLE 16" x 8" Wheels (4) Set - $1,435* / set
*PLUS Flat rate Shipping to any of the 48 contiguous states + $59.95


NOTE - Set includes 4 wheels, 20 correct lug nuts, 20 lug nut black caps, 4 chrome-plated valve stems, 4 black center caps, and 4 reproduction “GNX” center cap decals.

NOTE - We have a flat shipping rate to any of the 48 contiguous states of just $59.95.

Here is the link to these wheels on our website:


GN T-TYPE CENTRAL GET TOGETHER - Chicagoland Buick Chapter -
SATURDAY, JUNE 6, 7 & 8, 2014

The main dates are Saturday and Sunday June 7th and 8th 2014. Location is the Holiday Inn, 860 Irving Park Road in Itasca, IL. This event includes a car show, cruise, swap meet and racing. Sponsored in part by the Chicagoland Buick Chapter. Security will be provided. There is also a meet and greet Friday night, June 6th. For more information, contact Benny at 773-251-8198 or Prasad at 630-965-1987.

BREAKING NEWS - Pete and I will be going to attend the GN T-Type Central Get Together listed above. Although we will not be there as vendors, we can bring parts for any of our mid-west customers that will be attending and would like to not have to pay shipping costs. You must call our office and pay for the item(s) you want in advance and we would bring with us - 215-766-1611 x 0. We would need you cell number to contact you at the event. We would be there Friday and Saturday only.

JUNE 13th and 14th, 2014

Performance Years has their annual Car Show and Open House on June 13th and 14th, 2014, located at 2705 Clemens Road, Hatfield, PA 19440. This is a huge event, which featured over 275 Pontiacs a last year's event. They also have a huge segment open to other American Muscle cars. I attended last year’s event and plan to go this year as well. Pypes Exhaust is part of this company where we get our exhaust systems that we sell. You have to re-register on line only. Phone 267-638-3500 or pypesexhaust.com/openhouse or performanceyears.com/openhouse

THE BUICK PERFORMANCE GROUP 2014 EVENT - National Trail Raceway, Hebron, Ohio
AUGUST 1st and 2nd, 2014

The BPG 2014 Event will again be held at National Trail Raceway in Hebron, Ohio on August 1st-2nd. The Host Hotel will be the Newark Metropolitan. They will have an expanded breakfast menu for 2014. The Hotel will be making arrangements to block off the street on Thursday and Friday night and will provide the BBQ again. Ted Nagel's Band will again be playing Friday night.

For more information, visit - www.buickperformancegroup.com - or their Buick Performance Group Facebook page.


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, Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, etc.) If it doesn't link in one browser, it may work in another.

Most people having problems are using Internet Explorer… If you are having issues with links, try another browser to see if it works.


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.


Remember, Pete and I are planning to be in Chicago for the June GN and T-Type Get together. We will be there for Friday night and Saturday. Be sure to bring any parts or cores you want us to buy or issue credit for with you.

If you want to save money on shipping on any of parts, let us know. We will not be set up as a vendor.