08-03-2016 Inner Circle

08-03-2016 Inner Circle

Greetings Turbo Regal Inner Circle Members 08-03-2016 -


As we noted in an earlier Inner Circle, the Buick Club of America event was held this past week in nearby Allentown, Pennsylvania.

We invited Sid and Belva Meyer and Alan and Joy Oldfield to come over to our house to see my personal collection last Monday. Sid and Belva are from Indiana and Alan and Joy are from Iowa.

Steve LeVangie, another good customer who could not make the event this past week, sent me his tickets to use. I contacted Jason in Canada and he came down and we both went to the Friday night dinner. They had over 400 people at the dinner, including Nicola Bulgari who hosted the event on his property in Allentown.

I presented Mr. Bulgari with one of my books, “Kirban’s Guide to 1986 and 1987 Buick Turbo Regals,” as a gift.

I also gave him a copies of two autograph photos that my Dad got in the 1940s. One was of Bette Davis and one was of Frank Capra. In Mr. Bulgari’s vast collection, he has the taxi cab that was in the movie “It’s a Wonderful Life,” which Frank Capra directed. He also has a car from a movie that Bette Davis drove.

On Saturday Jason and I went to the car show, which featured over 600 Buicks of all kinds, including a few Turbo Regals and two GNXs.

The setting for the car show was one of the best venues that I had ever attended. The property was originally a drive-in movie theatre, so the grounds had several levels that had all been landscaped. There were several new large buildings. These buildings housed Mr. Bulgari’s cars and also served as his shop to restore the cars he has collected over the years. The drive-in movie screen was still standing intact.

There were a quite a number of vendors set up on the grounds. I had never seen so much different Buick literature and dealer items for sale at one event as I did at this event. Most of the Buick literature was from the 1950s and 1960s. I saw very little Buick items for the Turbo Regal years.

Of course, I ended up buying most of the Turbo Regal literature that I could find. I bought several items from one gentleman who came from Indiana. He had been a Buick salesman for 50 years.

The weather was not only super hot, but the humidity was also quite high. The rains held off until around 2 in the afternoon.

I did get to see quite a number of unusual Buicks going back to around 1912. I saw several “Woodie” station wagons and at least 20 or more of the Reatta coupes. I also saw several Buick Pace cars.

The event was a rare opportunity to see a wide range of Buicks at one place and not far from where we live.

PHOTO 1 - I show four different over views of the car show layout. Note in the two lower photos, you can see the large drive-in movie screen!

PHOTO 2 - The top left photo shows a rare Buick transistor radio. The top right photo shows some of the unique Buick dealer items. The small stand-up sign had a $200 price tag. The lower left photo shows an early Buick tri-power setup. The lower right shows a collection of the GMP Buick diecast models that was for sale. I believe the seller was asking $75 each.

PHOTO 3 - The top left photo shows a restored fuel truck, complete with a Sinclair gas station sign that was set up on the grounds. The top right photo shows one of the older four-door Buicks. The lower left photo shows an early 1950s “Woodie” Buick station wagon. The lower right photo shows one of the new Buick prototypes. I believe Buick had 3 cars on display.

As I mentioned earlier, this event featured the most Buick literature I had ever seen for sale at one event. In the next photo we show some of the literature we bought. These are listed for sale under the Rare Parts section in this issue. It can be very hard to find any Buick literature related to the 1984-1987 Turbo Regals.

PHOTO 4 - The top left photo shows an original 1986 Price Directory which lists every Buick model, every option, every price of the option and the SPID code for that option. It runs 65 pages.

The middle photo shows the “Turbocharged V-6: the next generation” 8-page booklet. This booklet basically explains the Turbocharged V6 engine when it was first introduced.

The top right photo show “BUICK Motorsport Interesting Insights into Buick Motorsports” brochure.

The lower left and middle are Buick Stage I and II V6 Heavy Duty Parts catalogs.

The bottom right photo is a factory reprint of “Jim Ruggles Buick Stage One V6 Performance Guide.” It runs 32 pages in length.

See the Rare Parts listing for prices of these rare original Buick booklets and brochures.


We have been contacted by a lady who recently lost her husband. He was a collector of various high-performance Mustang/Shelby cars and parts. He was extremely well organized and has all the documents, and receipts for everything he acquired over a long period of time.

Notably he was the third owner of a 1968 Mustang GT 500 KR car. He also had a 1971 Mach One that he purchased brand new, which needs to be restored.

He also purchased 2008 Shelby GT500 convertible and now has a mere 3,200 miles on it. This car alone has $18,000 worth of extras he bought, most of which have not been installed on the car. The amount of parts and equipment is impressive. The Window Sticker shows he paid $77,000 for the car alone, which included a $25,000 Adjusted Market Value tacked on.

It’s amazing that he kept all the receipts and various records to prove everything.

Some of the equipment, such as an Eastwood welder and 6 hp compressor, are still brand new in the wrapper. The two huge tool boxes of tools are like brand new. Various air tools, floor jacks, engine stand Backyard Buddy is part of the vast collection. The Backyard Buddy has never been used or even assembled.

There is also a 427 FE aluminum block direct from Carroll Shelby with the receipt from summer of 2007. The receipt for this alone with a few extras is just over $6,000.

In several display cases are 35 various diecast Fords, some of which are extremely rare. All the original boxes for the diecast cars have been carefully saved. There are several shelves of car magazines and manuals.

I was amazed at the amount of items tucked into this small garage and shed. Every part is noted in books, when it was removed or what car it is for. The attention to detail just boggles the mind.

The crown jewel of this collection of cars and parts is, of course, the 1968 Shelby GT 500 KR car that is very solid and needs to be restored and assembled. It has a 427 block in it and comes with the original block. She has all the documents going back to the original owner and it is registered with the Shelby Registration Club. It is the real deal. The car is a black-on-black hardtop 4 speed combination. I don’t claim to be an expert on Shelby or Ford, but I know enough that these items and cars have great value.

I did see at least two dual quad setups among the extra parts.

If you know of a big time Ford Shelby collector, have them email me - [email protected] - so I can provide them with more details.

I am still seeking interested parties for the cars and parts. I have convinced her to split the collection up - Meaning the 2008 Shelby GT 500 convertible would be sold separately. The tools and equipment would be separate. The various diecast cars and pictures I think will be going to a local auction house.


In last week’s Inner Circle, we showed the May/June 2016 Old Cars Report Price Guide. We also showed how they decide the 6 classes of condition.

As I stated the #1 condition, while many may make that claim, most cars would be rated as fine or very good.

According to this issue, it shows a 1986 T-Type Regal in good condition valued at $8,300. In fine condition the value is $12,950. A 1986 Grand National in good condition is currently valued at $13,950 and in very fine condition is rated at $21,700.

The 1987 Turbo-T in good condition is rated at $10,800 and in very fine condition is $16,800. A Turbo Limited in good condition is rated at $11,700 and in very fine condition is rated at $18,200.

A 1987 Grand National in good condition is rated at $15,080 and in very fine condition is rated at $23,450. A GNX comes in at $41,650 for good condition and in very fine condition comes in at $64,750.

The area that I really disagree with is any of these in the #6 condition which is described as a parts car. For a GNX parts car they put the value at just $3,700. This price for a #6 GNX parts car is way low. It would be very tough to buy a 1987 Grand National parts car for $3,700 let alone a GNX.

In none of these cases is mileage a factor in their prices, it’s strictly by condition.

Even though the Price Guide has no separate listing for the 1987 WE4 Turbo Regals, in my opinion you can figure they are worth a few percentage points over what is shown for a regular 1987 Turbo-T and not as high as the Turbo-T Limited. It’s one of those models that is widely recognized among Turbo collectors even though the Old Cars Price Guide has no listing for them.


The end of July marked the end of production for the very last company that still made VCR players. The company claims it has become difficult to obtain parts for them.

What I found interesting about this article is the fact they said 700,000 new VCR machines were sold worldwide in 2015. Maybe owners were replacing their Beta machines?

Home VCR units first became widely available in the 1970s and would compete with the Sony Betamax format.

On a side note, Sony stopped making Betamax tapes last year in 2015.

A special thanks to Jason in Canada for giving me the article.

Speaking of electronics, I still use an IBM Selectric II typewriter at home and at our office. Both are in mint condition. One was my Mom’s and one was my Dad’s. They remain the quickest method for typing envelopes or short notes for me. They also hold sentimental value to me.


All the sale priced T-shirts are sold out. You can still order the shirt with the design printed on the front. See New Parts section or check out this link on this shirt on our website:


I recently tried a sample set of brackets and they still need a minor change done to properly fit in the dash. Hopefully we will have news next week. I am fairly certain the brackets will sell for about $19.95 per set.

NOTE - If you purchase one of my radios, we will give you a special price on the new reproduction radio brackets that we are having made.


We still need to see more GNX SPID labels. I need to know if they show a J41 or J42 code or neither code.

Also VD6 and VD7 codes for aluminum bumper supports.

If no code is indicated for the bumper supports, does your GNX have aluminum supports front and in the rear?

Early indications seem to point to the fact GM was not that accurate with the SPID codes on the label. I have now seen several SPID labels that show neither a J41 or J42 code, which refers to steel or aluminum rear brake drums on Turbo Regals. This includes one Grand National with 100 SPID codes, yet lists no code for indicating steel or aluminum brake drums (J41 or J42). With that said, check out your car’s SPID label and see if you have a J41 or J42 code. Email me your findings - [email protected]


Based on the many Turbo Regals I have personally owned and ones I have seen at various events over the last 28 years, there is one very rare option that sticks in my mind. I believe it is probably the rarest one you could have in a Turbo Regal.

In all my years dealing with these cars, I have only seen one. The early 1984 and 1985 T-Type Regals could have had Lear Siegler bucket seats. The option was $600 and the code was “795” in the 1984 models. In 1985 Lear Siegler bucket seats in a T-Type had a code “AQ9.” While Lear Siegler seats in 1984 or a 1985 T-Type Regal would be fairly rare, what really makes it more rare is having a power driver’s seat. I wish I had a photo to show it.

Unlike the common one-piece plastic trim that houses the 6-way power seat switch on the regular style bucket seats, the one on the Lear Siegler seats is completely different. The one I saw was probably a dozen years ago or more. It had a small plastic housing that the seat switch was attached to. The small panel was not much longer than the actual 6-way switch that was attached to it. I saw this many years ago in a local car. I have yet to ever see another one.

If you own a 1984 or 1985 T-Type with the Lear Siegler seat option and it’s a power driver seat, please email me several good photos of the switch. I’d like to share it in the Inner Circle. My email is - [email protected]


It has been brought to my attention by several people that the 250-mile Turbo Regal I mentioned last week that reached $90,000 and did not sell was a GNX not a Grand National as reported. We are sorry for the mix up.


I am still waiting for word from Cardone as to when I can expect to have more aluminum brake drums available. If you wish a set from the next shipment, contact our office - 215-766-1611 x 0. We would not charge your credit card until we have them in stock. The price is $234.95 plus shipping.


Here is the information on our credits for cores.

We currently need original good 1986-1987 AC Delco mass air flow sensors. We allow $40 Letter of Credit for each correct AC Delco core. See photo 2 in 7-13-2016 Inner Circle to determine if you have the proper mass air flow sensor we need.

URGENT NEED - TURBO CORES must be the 1986-1987 Turbo Regal stock turbo. They must be complete. We will issue you a $100 Letter of Credit for each acceptable core.

If you ship to us, the post office is the cheapest method. Pack the item(s) with a note with your name, address and phone number.

MAIL - Ship to Address -
PO BOX 1199

UPS - Ship to Address -
6201 Kellers Church Road


If you need technical information, it’s best to email - [email protected] rather than call us.
We will do our best to answer any technical questions within 24 hours.


From time to time, whenever we spot an unusual or an exceptional car or truck for sale, or one we have for sale, we will put a blurb in our weekly Inner Circle. Also, any cars that our customers have for sale will be featured here and you can see their car with photos on our website. In this category, we will run the descriptions for two-to-three weeks and, if there is no interest in that particular vehicle, it will be deleted the following week. If any of these vehicles perk your interest, email me personally - [email protected] - for more information and photos.


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]


1978-1988 Buick Regal (All G-Body Models) -

This is a complete set of the 6 black plastic molding clips, which secure each of the metal side moldings (left and right) by the headliner.

We also offer part #7362, Headliner Molding Clips (8) Set, which are the clips for the front and back headliner installation. By purchasing this part #7674 and part #7362, you will have all the plastic clips you need to secure the headliner.

If you have a T-Tops Buick Regal, you will not need all 6 of these molding clips.

This is a must-have part, since many headliners are starting to sag and may need to be replaced.

Because the original unique clips are plastic, many may break or crack due to age and heat when you remove them to replace the headliner.

The original clips have already been discontinued by the major supplier for GM, since they were last used on the rear-wheel drive platform cars back in 1988.

NOTE - You may also be interested in this related part - #7362, Headliner Molding Clips (8) Set.
Another excellent replacement part for any interior restoration. Keep a set for when you have the headliner redone.

7674 - 1978-1988 Buick Regal (All G-Body Models) -
Reproduction Headliner Side Molding Clips (6) Set - $26.95 / set

Here is a link to these clips on our website:

1984-1985 Turbo Regal -
Pre-tested with Limited Lifetime Warranty

Our research has shown that very few companies offer a 100% brand new, correct-appearing alternator for the 1984-1985 Turbo Regals.

The original 1984 Turbo Regal alternator had 94 amps. It has a single pulley format with a different fan than the later Turbo Regal alternators (see upper photo.) It is possible some 1985 Turbo Regals used the 1984-style alternator as well.

If you have a 1985 Turbo Regal you need to determine if you have a 2-prong plug (shown on the left) or a 4-pin format (shown on the right.) You would also have a 6 groove pulley and a different style fan on the front.

If you have the 4-pin format, see part #7315. The one you need is part #7315 or #7316, which is a 200 amp.

Our supplier who builds all our alternators is able to modify these to produce 120 amps instead of the original 94 amps. He also uses heavy-duty diodes in his alternators. All the parts are brand new and look as close to factory original as possible. These improvements make this alternator far superior than any auto store version.

Working closely with a local source, we can assure quality control. Each alternator is hand assembled, pre-tested and comes with a Limited Lifetime Warranty.

The pulley itself is used, but is factory original so it has the proper diameter and groove. All of the other external parts (including the housing) and internal parts are brand new. The housing on this unit does not have any factory stampings. Since each alternator is pre-tested, you can be assured it is producing a minimum of 120 amps.

The proper amps and charging is a critical function to assure the electronics are getting the proper volts to the complete electrical system. Some of you may be running additional fuel pumps and this makes this even more important.

No core is required, so you can retain the original alternator.

It’s always better to buy brand new versus used or rebuilt, especially if it’s a car you plan to keep.

NOTE - You may also be interested in a related item - #7315 - 1986-1987 Turbo Regal & 1989 Turbo Trans Am Brand New 120 amp Alternator or #7316 -1986-1987 Turbo Regal and 1989 Turbo Trans Am Brand New Custom-Built 200 amp Alternator.

While other alternators may be cheaper, ours are 100% correct looking.

An excellent replacement for any engine restoration.

NOTE - If you own a 1985 Turbo Regal, be SURE to determine if you need this #7705 2-prone alternator or the 4-pin format, part #7315 or part #7316.

7705 - 1984-1985 Turbo Regal -
Brand New 120 amp Alternator, Pre-tested with Limited Lifetime Warranty - $174.95

Here is a link to this alternator on our website:


For the many Turbo Regal enthusiasts out there, we now carry this handsome “TOP 10 REASONS I OWN A BUICK GRAND NATIONAL” T-shirt.

We only stock the three most popular sizes - LARGE, X LARGE and XX LARGE.

The high-quality ash gray T-shirt is pre-shrunk 1% polyester and 99% heavy-weight cotton.

The sharp 5-color design features our Buick mechanic cartoon along with these related reasons to own a Grand National silkscreened on the front.

# 1 - I was impressed with the factory black paint job.
# 2 - I love the constant challenge of trying to eliminate oil leaks.
# 3 - I wonder where the "power" is in the operation of the power windows.
# 4 - My wife says I needed a spending outlet for my money.
# 5 - I can buy tires wholesale.
# 6 - I was told these cars are seldom stolen.
# 7 - My joy of buying a T-Top Grand National was quickly shattered during the first rain storm.
# 8 - I wanted to learn all about the powermaster brake system.
# 9 - “B-B-B-BAD-TO-THE-BONE” sounds good on the radio.
#10 - The uninformed think it’s a Monte Carlo...the informed won't challenge me to race.

T-shirt makes a great statement at a car show, and also makes a great gift for that Turbo enthusiast or for your mechanic.

NOTE - You may also be interested in this related sign - #7726 - “TOP TEN REASONS I OWN A BUICK GRAND NATIONAL” 17.5″ x 10″ 1/8″ Acrylic Sign.

7671-L - “TOP 10 REASONS I OWN A BUICK GRAND NATIONAL” T-Shirt - size LARGE - $15.95
7672-XL - “TOP 10 REASONS I OWN A BUICK GRAND NATIONAL” T-Shirt - size X LARGE - $15.95

Here is a link to these T-shirts on our website:


You showcase your “pride and joy” whenever you can at various events. Whether it’s a bike, car, or truck, why not have it displayed on a sturdy piece of 1/8" thick acrylic.

Why have a show sign on poster board when you can have it done on a sturdy piece of acrylic, which will last a very long time, even if it gets wet.

You can easily display it in your man cave or garage when you’re not showing your car. 

The entire process can be done by email.

We offer two sizes - 17-1/2" by 10" by 1/8" thick, or 23-1/2" by 15-1/2" by 1/8" thick. Design layout can be horizontal or vertical.

The material is 1/8" acrylic and the UV ink printing process is called “Direct Print.” The printing machine costs over $100,000. The machine is capable of printing images 8 feet wide on material as thick as 1”.

Simply email us - [email protected] - your photo file. It must be at least 300 dpi.

Typical turn around would be 5-7 days. If you have any questions, call us - 215-766-1611 x 0.

5500 - Custom-made Acrylic Sign - 17-1/2" x 10" x 1/8", black and white or color - $34.95, which includes shipping. PA residents add 6% sales tax.

5502 - Custom-made Acrylic Sign - 23-1/2" x 15-1/2" x 1/8", black and white or color - $49.95, which includes shipping. PA residents add 6% sales tax.

NOTE - We can also quote on any custom size display.

The ideas are endless and signs can be made for personal or business use. Makes a great gift.

Here is a link to these acrylic signs on our website:


To have your power antenna rebuilt, you must first contact Christina at our office - 215-766-1611 x 0 - to place the order with your credit card information.

The total price for the rebuild is just $99.95. You must have an original AC Delco power antenna. This would have a riveted bracket to the tube and have a collapsible top at the top of the tube. Because of the quality of the various replacement and reproduction power antennas our source does not have the parts to fix them. Only the original AC Delco ones that came in your car from the factory can be rebuilt. This includes return shipping to you to any of the basic 48 states. We will give you a “RO” number (Repair Order) and the address you need to ship your antenna to. It does not get shipped to us! The RO number is proof it has been paid for. This RO number must be on your label on your power antenna. You must attach a label with your name and address to it so you are assured of getting your original power antenna back.

NOTE - Do NOT send any of the bezel parts (metal bezel and plastic bezel under the metal one.) Only send the basic antenna. You must unplug the under-the-hood 3-wire harness (gray, white and green wires) from the antenna. Do NOT cut any of the wires.

NOTE - He will be taking a three-week vacation the end of July and the beginning of August. No shipments can be made during these three weeks. We will post reminders about this as the time draws closer.

We also have a limited supply of original AC Delco power antennas currently being rebuilt by our source. This is part #7703. These rebuilt antennas will have the original-style hex tip on the mast. The price is $149.95, which includes shipping to any of the basic 48 states. You must call Christina at our office 215-766-1611 x 0 to purchase one, as supplies are limited. Currently, we only have a few getting rebuilt. If you call and want a rebuilt antenna, we would not charge your credit card until we can ship it.

One thing we recommend you do prior to any power antenna removal is to purchase the Pete Serio booklet - “1984-1987 Turbo Regal - Power Antenna Removal and Installation Guide,” our part #6976.

Here is a link to these Rebuilding/Rebuilt Power Antennas on our website:

1986-1987 Buick Turbo Regal -

This is one of the key engine parts to keeping your Turbo Regal engine original. This is the black metal breather that came on the front of the passenger’s valve cover. A tube went into the other end that went to the inlet bell on the turbo.

If this breather is neglected, it becomes saturated with oil. Once it is saturated, the oil travels through and down the connecting tube, through the turbo inlet bell, and into the intercooler. The oil can coat the intercooler and the connecting hoses, and eventually gum up the throttle body.

We offer them as a pair, so you will have an extra breather.

Supplies of these original-style black breathers may become limited. Other versions are not black, nor are they metal.

These are identical to what came on your car when it was new.

NOTE - You may also be interested in these related parts - #6848 Rebuilt STOCK Turbo and #6849 UPGRADED TA-49 Turbo

Another great engine restoration item.

6539 - 1986-1987 Buick Turbo Regal -
Replacement Black Metal Stock Breathers (2) - $12.95

Here is a link to these Stock Breathers on the website:


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.

You may need to "UPDATE" your browser to be use you are using the current version.


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]


GS NATIONALS - September 14th-17th, 2016 -
Beach Bend Raceway in Bowling Green, Kentucky

See the GSXtra for more details, or their website - gsnationals.com

EAST COAST BUICK REGIONALS - September 16th-17th, 2016 at Cecil County Dragway in Rising Sun, Maryland

Event includes a judged car show on Saturday open to all Buick makes and anything Buick powered. Free Vending. Saturday race classes must be Buick powered. For more information, contact - [email protected] or [email protected]

NOTE - This is not a misprint. Both the GS Nationals and East Coast Buick Regionals fall on the same weekend.


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.


Next up on my schedule is the “Corvettes at Carlisle” event. I have arranged for Dave Walden, owner of ECS Automotive Concepts, to be a speaker at one of the seminars. He does the VIN door jamb stickers and will soon be doing the 1984-1987 Turbo Regal Window Stickers.

At this time he has most of the information he needs to do them and already has the proper paper stock in house.