10-21-09 Inner Circle

10-21-09 Inner Circle

Greetings Turbo Regal Inner Circle Members - 10-21-2009


Paul and Joseph Galvin started a business in Chicago in 1928 manufacturing battery eliminators. This electronic device enabled battery-powered home radios to operate on household electric current.

William Lear had a radio parts company in the same building as the Galvin brothers. With the stock market crash, the Galvin Brothers realized they needed a new product. The answer was right there in the same building, William Lears radio parts company. Their thinking was, they thought they could develop an affordable radio that could be installed in most of the popular automobile models. This is what is known as "being in the right place at the right time!"

In 1930, the Galvin brothers drove a Studebaker from Chicago, Illinois to Atlantic City, New Jersey to demonstrate this new invention of a radio in a car at the Radio Manufacturers Association Convention. They wanted to prove the radio would get a strong clear signal with the car engine running. A new name for this was created and it became known as "Motorola," to suggest sound in motion. The new name Motorola became so poplar they dropped the original name Galvin Manufacturing to simply Motorola Inc. This was the start of radios becoming an "option" in automobiles.

The first radio models usually were a two-piece unit. The small face and dial setup would be visible either on the dash or attached to the steering wheel and the main portion that contained the massive radio tubes etc generally mounted under the dash.

I can recall as a kid in the 1950s my Mom had a 1956 Cadillac coupe with a "wonder bar" radio. This was still strictly an AM radio. To change the radio stations, it had a single bar across the top. If I remember right, you could push that bar and it would stop at either pre-set stations or the stations that had the strongest signal.

By the time the original muscle car era happened, FM became available as a radio option, around 1961-1963. In 1967 8-tracks became an option in various car models. I remember these quite well, since I owned different cars with this option. I remember that every time it would eat an 8-track tape, I would chuck it out the car window in frustration! In 1967-1969, stereo became an option on car FM radios. This was quickly followed with the introduction of the cassette around 1971. As many of you know, the cassette option became a mainstay for many years until the introduction of the CD player.

The information I stated above is based on my knowledge of Pontiac and notably the GTOs. Unfortunately, the CD option did become available in the Buicks until after the Turbo Regal years ended! At first in some models, it was combined with the cassette option, so it gave owners another additional choice.


For the 1984 through 1987 Turbo Regals, Buick Buick offered several radio/cassette options each year.

In 1984 you had six possibilities; in 1985 you had seven; in 1986 you had six; and in 1987 you had five. I took this information directly from each year's Buick Price directories from my collection.

Your trunk ID label (also known as your "Service Parts Identification Label") would give you the code for the radio that came in your Turbo Regal originally.

By far the most sought after radio option for any year Turbo Regal is the top of the line model. In 1984 the ID code on your trunk label for this radio was UU6. For the 1985 through 1987 Turbo Regals the trunk ID code was UX1. In 1984 the option was $604. In 1985 it was $494. In 1986 and 1987 the price remained the same at $504 as we noted the code for 1984 was different from the 1985-1987 versions. I believe this is because the 1984 had slightly different control buttons under the cassette cartridge. All the various radios that are correct in the 1984-1987 Turbo Regals had the glossy black face. Except for one style radio. That radio was the standard am push button radio. Basically a "Plain Jane" radio that I believe was the same one used in various other GM cars at that time which would explain why that radio had simply a satin or flat black face.

An original AM radio in a car is fairly difficult to find today, since many owners have had their radios upgraded.

What has gained in value over the last dozen or so years, is the factory metal radio delete plate that Buick used when no radio was selected. Today, this metal Buick original delete plate can fetch $100 and more. The trunk ID code for the radio delete, regardless of what year, was UL5. This got you $56 back on your original invoice. That amount of $56 remained the same every year 1984-1987.

In the Buick Price Directory for the 1984 Regal, the radio delete code does not appear in the booklet. It does however; appear in the 1985 through 1987 Buick Price Directories.

In looking at the various GM Production Option Booklets that GM also published, it shows the UL5 radio delete option being used from 1982 and beyond.

Remember, as with any literature related to any car models, it's important to realize changes were made and much of the promotional literature was printed prior to the model year being available.

Watch for Part 2 on the various radios available in the Turbo Regals next week.

Photo 1 - Shows the metal Buick radio delete plate. It was designed to cover the slot where the radio would have been installed.

Photo 2 - Shows the stock AM radio in the one Turbo Regal I had with this option. Of the 300 plus Turbo Regals we have owned, I only had one car that had this AM radio. I remember the car well because I drove it home to Pennsylvania from Florida and that was the ONLY audio I had for the entire trip! Car was a very low-optioned bench seat Turbo-T.

Photo 3 - We show the covers of the full-color brochures for the 1984 and 1985 models. These were part of the 3-ring Buick Dealer Album each year. It was from this brochure potential buyers would choose the radio they wanted for their new Buick.

Photo 4 - We show the covers of the full color brochure for the 1986 and 1987 models. These were part of the 3-ring Buick Dealer Album each. It was from these brochures potential buyers would choose the radio they wanted for their new Buick.


We expect to send the Inner Circle members a special Inner Circle email showing all the Christmas Specials by the end of the week or on Monday. In some cases, supplies are limited. We have 21 Christmas Specials available.


We can now offer our customers a high-quality reproduction gas tank specifically designed for the 1984-1987 Turbo Regals. This version has the internal baffles in the tank and the filler neck is already attached.

We recommend you also purchase our new reproduction stainless gas tank straps straps (Part #7102) and the insulation straps (Part #7103) which would give the install a totally look. This would also be an excellent time to upgrade your fuel pump, Part #1540.

This is one way to resolve the issue of a dented original gas tank, or one that has a thick undercoating on it, or one that has been sitting a long time and may have rust and grit in it.

1984-1987 Turbo Regal -

After much research, we have discovered several companies overseas making reproduction/aftermarket gas tanks available, and have found this one made in Canada to be the best.

The gas tank contains the internal baffles, just like the original gas tank. Our son has used several of this brand of gas tank in cars he has worked on that needed the tanks replaced, as well as in total restorations Buicks.

As shown in the photo, this reproduction gas tank comes complete with the filler neck attached to the actual gas tank and baffles in the tank. It also includes the o-ring (gasket) and a locking ring for the fuel sender in a separate bag, shown in the inset box. You must re-use your original fuel sender, factory fuel pump and sock, and the original gas tank straps with the insulators. Check out our Part #7102 for the reproduction gas tank rubber insulator straps (2) and Part #7103 for the actual reproduction gas tank stainless straps (2), if you need them. This would also be an excellent time to upgrade the fuel pump, Part #1540.

The reproduction gas tank measures 36-1/4" x 24-1/4" x 8-7/8" and the fuel capacity is the same as the original tank. It is stamped from a high-quality automotive grade steel with a natural finish. Each gas tank is pressure tested for quality before it is shipped from the manufacturing plant.

Because of its bulky size, this part is dropped shipped from our source by ground UPS. Allow 5-7 days for delivery.

A new gas tank eliminates the issues you may have from a car that has not been used much and may have dirt or rust in the tank. Since this tank is new, it looks nice when viewed from the back of the car, excellent for any restoration project. With the gas tank out of the car, it's also an excellent time to upgrade to a high-volume fuel pump.

An excellent replacement item for any exterior restoration.

7247 - 1984-1987 Turbo Regal -
Reproduction Gas Tank $199.95 + $40* TOTAL - $239.95
*UPS Ground Shipping to 48 U.S. continental states.

Click Here to see this Reproduction Gas Tank product page on our web site.



Our DVD features footage from Richard Clark’s Open House, sponsored by ZDDPlus™ in the fall of 2008. Coverage highlights some of the unique cars that were in attendance at this unique event in Burlington, North Carolina. Richard generously offered Turbo Buick enthusiasts a weekend open house at his private warehouse/garage buildings, testing on his Dyno machine, mini seminars, and even free lunches both days. Although we don't have any filmed coverage, there was also free track time sponsored by ZDDPlus™ and organized by the local GM Turbo 6 club.

We show Richard testing powermaster brake units, flowing injectors, etc. There is also a segment showing how ZDDPlus™ is produced.

This DVD also includes my trip to "Back to the Bricks" cruise event in Flint, Michigan. This yearly 5-day event features 20,000+ cars. There is footage of some of the show cars and pace cars in attendance, as well as some very rare Grand National related items that we spotted and some of the rare 1979 Turbo cars at the event. One night we even met up with the local Michigan Turbo Club with about 60 cars in attendance.

We show some of the Buick history from the Sloan Research Center, including GNX #500, along with several of their show cars and pace cars. We also stopped at the Doc Watson's place (known for his connection to Hurst-Campbell) in nearby Grand Blanc, Michigan.

There's a funny look at a dead Grand National for sale and a unique collection of other stored cars exposed to the outside elements.

DVD runs approximately 100 minutes, is fully narrated, except for one small portion of still photos from the Sloan Museum.

Another unique DVD of interest to the Buick Turbo Regal enthusiast.

7246 - Kirban Performance Products -
"Richard Clark's Open House 2008 and Back to the Bricks Event 2009" DVD $6.95

Click Here to see this DVD product page on our web site.


PART #6684 - 1986-1987 Turbo Regal - Driver's Side Relay Powder-coated BLACK Cover

PART #6685 - 1986-1987 Turbo Regal - Driver's Side Relay CHROME-plated Cover


NOTE - If you know of a GM or Buick Turbo event for this year, let us know and we can post it in our weekly Turbo Regal Inner Circle so our members are aware of the event.

The best way to stay informed with the show season is to check out the various Turbo Buick forums.

SOUTHERN BUICK SHOOTOUT 2009 - Reynolds, Georgia -
Friday & Saturday, NOVEMBER 6th & 7th, 2009 -
The Southern Buick Shootout 2009 event at the Silver Dollar Raceway is scheduled for November 6th and 7th, 2009. This event will be open to any and all BUICK, OLDS, and PONTIAC cars. The event will include a points race for the TSO and TSM categories, as well as other potential Buick categories.

The plan is to have heads-up / index pacing available for those racers that cannot run in TSM/TSO categories. They also plan to have Gamblers Racing for both Sportsman type cars (no delay boxes allowed) and Top Eliminator (delay Box). The will be Test-N-Tune all day both days. If you have questions, email - [email protected]


Looking ahead into next Spring 2010, the first Turbo Buick event of the season will be the first ever "turbobuick.com Nationals." The dates are March 15-20, 2010 in Burlington, NC area.

For more information on this March event, click on the thread - http://www.turbobuick.com/forums/national-racing-events-info/292319-2010-turbobuick-com-nationals.html - Or, you can email Clint Adkins at - [email protected]

"Light Your Fire" - 2010 Buick Performance Group Nationals - July 30 - August 1, 2010 at the National Trail Raceway in Hebron OH (near Columbus). They want to gather together the largest number of 1969-1974 factory Stage1 cars anyone has ever seen since the Buick muscle car days of Flint.

This is a special event that may never come to pass again, so don't miss the factory "Stage1 Convention" at the 2010 Buick Performance Group National Event. For more info, go to - http://www.buickperformancegroup.com/forums/showthread.php?t=8754

NOTE - If you know of a GM or Buick Turbo event, let us know and we can post it in our weekly Turbo Regal Inner Circle so our members are aware of the event.


On the parts listed below, you must call our office to purchase them. These are close out items, items that have changed designs, or items that are no longer available.

We have the 1986-1987 Turbo Regal - GM Air Flow Duct (from turbo to MAF sensor), Part #6536 in stock for $61.95. Just a few left now.

First come, first served. These banners listed below, would make a great gift for any Buick enthusiast or mechanic.

B - The manufacturer for the GM licensed banners we market have changed material. We have one left of the "Buick Motorportsport" Banners in the old style. These measure approximately 21 inches tall by 48 inches long. Price is just $35 and $10 shipping. (To see this banner, search Part #7180 on our web site.)

C - The manufacturer for the GM licensed banners we market have changed material. We have 4 left that features the "GNX" logo with the words "A High-Performance Investment for the Fortunate 547." Full color as shown on our website. They measure approximately 21 inches tall by 48 inches wide. We have 4 left. Price is just $35 each and $10 shipping. (To see this banner, search Part #7181 on our web site.)

D - The manufacturer for the GM licensed banners we market have changed material. We have one left of the one of the new material "Grand National" logo banners. However, the power six logo is YELLOW and red instead of orange and red on this one. This is the newer version, so it measures 24 inches tall by 48 inches wide. Price is $35 and $10 shipping. (To see this banner in the orange and red design, search Part #7173 on our web site.)

Package Deal - Buy any two of the above listed banners and pay only $60 and $12 shipping. You MUST call the office direct to order any of the items in this section - 215-766-1611.


If you would like to see any Kirban Performance Products items listed on eBay, here is a link to our store and auctions -

http://stores.ebay.com/Kirban-Performance-Products-Inc_W0QQssPageNameZl2QQtZ km


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 not remember who requested the item.


November 7th and 8th we will be in Ocala, Florida at Don Garlits' 22nd Annual Mopar event. We'll be one of his special guests as a vendor selling ZDDPlus™ and the ZPaste™. Richard Clark is planning to go to this event as well as Paul Castle. We hope you come by and say hello either Saturday or Sunday.

For more information, check out the website for the Mopar Florida club that puts on this Mopar event at Don Garlits Museum - www.floridamoparassociation.com