01-20-2020 Inner Circle

01-20-2020 Inner Circle

Greetings Turbo Regal Inner Circle Members 01-20-2021 -


Over the years we have often mentioned our son and some of the really neat things he has produced out of his Kirban Customs body shop.

Because they are black, Grand Nationals require special attention to detail if a repaint is in your plans. Black is a very tough color to paint and it is critical that all the prep work is done to the highest level. If the body work is not done properly, the flaws will only be magnified and show up in the paint.

Here is what needs to be done to get a high-quality paint job. The car is completely disassembled. This includes the quarter glass windows and the front and back glass, and all the weatherstrips as well. Bumpers and fillers are removed. The taillight housings are also removed. This attention to detail eliminates any paint or tape lines showing up. The entire car is then stripped to bare metal. All the imperfections are addressed, any body work and all the dents or waves are fixed. Then the car is masked up and primed. We then block the primer straight and re-prime again. After it's cured over a few weeks we block the primer again. The car is then sealed, refinished with 5 coats of base coat and 4 coats clear. It is then wet sanded flat with 500 grit, 600 grit, 1000 grit, 1500 grit, and 2,000 grit. Then compounded and polished to a mirror finish. Sanding and polishing alone can be in the 200 labor hours range.

A good bit of the expense is the cost of materials, which can vary greatly according to Darrell. For example - clear coat can be as cheap as $100 a gallon. The clear coat he uses costs $700 a gallon. Primer cost can vary as well. Cheap primer can be bought as low as $100 a gallon. Darrell uses a primer that runs $650 a gallon.

So, if you figure in the cost factor in materials you can see how a cheap paint job can be had for $6,000 to $8,000 dollars. Those paint jobs are not using the high-quality material that ensures the finished product will stay looking good over a period of time. Just as critical is the equipment the body shop uses. My son, for example, has over $30,000 into his air compressor and his high-end air filtration system to keep the air clean when spraying. All critical to insure a show-quality paint job.

My son has painted over a dozen million dollar Aston Martins.

It is just like chrome plating in some respect. Plating is just a coating, It's the prep work under the plating that determines how good the finished product is.

You also have to consider if you go the low dollar route and are not satisfied, it is now more work involved to restrip the car back to bare metal and start over.

When these cars were new the paint jobs were mediocre at best. Orange peel in the paint was very common. None of them had a mirror-like finish. Just like the chrome wheels. Very little prep work went into the wheels prior to chrome plating them.

With the values constantly rising, the last thing you want to do is to take the cheap route on the paint job.

Price can range from $25 grand to $50 grand, depending on how straight and perfect you want the end result to look. Also depends on the quality of materials the body shop uses. You want the finished product to look as good the first week as it will several years from now.

For more information, go to Darrell's website - www.kirbancustoms.com or follow his workmanship on Kirban Customs Inc. on facebook.

I know the kid did not obtain his skill set from me. Present him with any problem and he comes up with a solution.

PHOTO 1 - We show four views of this 1987 Grand National he painted over a year ago.

PHOTO 2 - These photos show a black 1969 Mustang he also did. Both this car and the Grand National are done at the high-end scale of perfection.


I now have the specifications and prices of 3 of the 1986-1987 Turbo Regals that my friend Don is putting up for sale the first time. The 1986 blue T-Type and the 1987 Grand National he purchased brand new. He is the 3rd owner of the white 1987 Turbo-T. These cars are located in Tennessee.

In each case he has the original parts that he removed years ago when the modifications were done. Some of them have the very desirable AVC GNX style dash installed. In each case email me [email protected] and let me know which car interests you. I can forward you more photos and supply you with the email address to the seller.

All the below cars have been fitted with SECO alarm systems and keyless entry. In my opinion the blue 1986 T-Type is a fairly rare car due to its color. Plus it has low miles. All these cars have always been in Tennessee so rust is not an issue. All have been garaged most of their life.

He also has a white 1987 Turbo Regal with T-Tops. It has the M & A Casting aluminum heads on them that were introduced in the early 1990s time frame. I had one of the first sets on our personal Grand National. Back then I believe they sold for around $3500 a set. This car has been raced and has run in the high 6 second range for the ⅛ mile. The car is slightly twisted due to its racing history and the fact it has T-Tops. Miles is about 75,000. The price is $25,000 OBO.

First up is a 1987 Grand National with 112,000. It has the rare astro roof option. It was repainted many years ago 1984 Corvette firemist color. Reasonably priced at $20,000 OBO.

PHOTO 3- We show four different views of this firemist 1987 Grand National. This car does retain the factory SPI decal on the inside trunk lid which will list all the features.

Next up is a 1986 T-Type Regal. Due to the original poor quality paint job he actually had the Buick dealership respray the car under warranty. Internally stock with zero rust. Car has approximately 67,000 miles. It is a hardtop. The price is $25,000 OBO.

PHOTO 4 - We show 4 different views of this 1986 T-Type. The car retains the original SPI decal on the inside of the trunk lid. This lists all the features.

For more photos on any of these Turbo cars email me directly [email protected] and specify which car perks your interest.


Last week we showed a photo of a copy of a dealer invoice from 1933 for a Ford my grandfather purchased. I had completely forgotten the fact back then that car invoices were very simple. It was up to each state as what was required. Some states such as Georgia did not even issue vehicle titles until the 1960s or 1970s according to Dimitar. The engine number was the vehicle identification number in that state.

I also heard from Don Edmands Jr, a good customer of ours. He sent me a copy of the new car his grandfather purchased in 1939. A sports sedan. The invoice lists the serial number which was just 10 digits and also the motor number. What is interesting on this invoice is it was set up for 24 monthly payments at $21.39 per payment. Today car loans can run for 6 or 7 years. Years ago cars generally never went beyond 100,000 miles so loans were only a few years at most!

I remember it was not that many years ago that some states you were not required to have car insurance. Montana did not have a posted daytime speed limit until 1974!

I always thought it would be nice if each state had the same type of format for vehicle titles which would make it easy for buying a vehicle out of state. Make each state laws on what is required the same. Be also nice if each state only required a rear license tag! Most cars today the front end design does not lend itself to attach a front license plate to. Nothing can be more frustrating than buying a vehicle out of state and then trying to register it in your state and finding out you don’t have the proper document or it's not been signed properly by the seller. I have first hand experience of this on the many cars I bought out of state.

In some cases the car could have had a lien and the lien paper looks just like the title. You need to make sure you get the title and the lien release is marked paid. You buy a vehicle from a person who has died. A copy of the death certificate won’t be enough. You need an original death certificate. I think this is also notarized. Always always double check the 17 digit VIN against the 17 digit VIN on the title. A messed up VIN can be a major headache. In Pennsylvania it can be corrected if it involves just two digits. I know as I had it happen to me on one of the many Turbo Regals I bought.

Vehicle has a lien. I strongly recommend you go to the company holding the title with cash in hand to pay off the lien so you get the title instantly. I did this a few times to make sure I got the documents I needed. All these things can be an issue and slow down the process of registering the vehicle in your state, especially if you are dealing with an out of state car. I can only imagine how difficult it is to purchase a car out of the USA.


In his collection are several Turbo Regals, GTOs and a Syclone. Here is the info and price for the Syclone. I can provide photos of the Syclone to whoever is interested. Simply email me directly [email protected] In many cases he either bought these cars new or has owned them for over 25 years or longer.

The Syclone is all stock being garaged since new. Last 3 digits of the VIN are 294 which I believe is the production number of the truck. The miles are a mere 9,500. The price is $44,900 OBO.


The other day I was checking something as a lady had contacted me wanting to buy one of my Dads Reference Bibles. She figured I was related because she saw one of my books on Amazon. On Amazon someone is listing my Kirban Guide to 1986 and 1987 Turbo Regals for $104.99 each. This book is still in print. We sell them for $34.95!

On the other hand my Dad's King James reference leather bound Bible runs anywhere from $348.99 to $855.78 each on Amazon. This is for a new one. Used they are listed for less money. Both my wife and I have my Dad's King James Bible with his commentary with our names in gold stamped in the leather cover. It’s hard to compete against the King James version of the Bible with my Dads commentary at the end.


Be sure to check ebay every week or so as we post parts under both Kirban Performance and Kirban Enterprises. You never know what will be posted from us.


We will only post any new additions to avoid confusion. Refer to previous inner circle emails to see the entire list.


Be sure to drop us an email if you have tried a certain item and would recommend it.


We just got in another shipment of our headlight kits and rear seat braces. We should have front frame braces in about a week's time. A lot of production has been delayed.


If you are returning any cores or products, it is important that you send them to the correct address.


We discovered that FedEx will not forward any packages that are sent to the old PO Box or to our old address in Plumsteadville. Instead they deliver the packages to the old address and leave them outside or send them back to the shipper. They refuse to forward and say that we should notify the shipper. In most cases, we have no idea when we are getting packages shipped back to us.

If you have any cores that are being sent back to us, be sure to use the correct address, especially if you use FedEx. Otherwise, we may not receive your package or it may be sent back to you.

CLICK HERE - For the link to the Kirban Enterprises ebay listings.


In order for our Inner Circle members to have an equal opportunity on the Rare Parts, no emails regarding orders on rare parts will be honored prior to 3 pm Wednesday. This way Inner Circle members get the opportunity first to purchase any of the rare items that may be pictured in the main body of the Inner Circle which may go on our website earlier in the day each week. Inner Circle members are the ONLY people that get to see the Rare Parts listing and see the prices.


Here is the information on our credits for cores.

STEERING WHEEL CORES. Currently we need good 1986-1987 Turbo Regal steering cores. They must be straight and not have rusted spokes. We will issue a Letter of Credit of $100 for each acceptable core. You must email me [email protected] a photo first to make sure the steering wheel is acceptable.

POWERMASTER BRAKE UNITS. Currently, we are accepting powermaster brake units. We give a $150 Letter-of-Credit for each acceptable core. If you include the turbo pedal add $10. You would receive $160 Letter-of-Credit. To avoid having your core not accepted, you MUST first email me a photo of the core you plan to send in - [email protected] - We will NOT accept any cores that have severe rust issues or have been disassembled. Core must have the
brake switch and brake bowl reservoir. Too many of the cores we have been getting are in such terrible shape they are worthless to us.

TURBO CORES must be the 1986-1987 Turbo Regal stock turbo. They must be complete. We will issue you a $175 Letter-of-Credit for each acceptable core. We need cores now.

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.

UPS or MAIL - Ship to Address –


Good news - We now accept Classified Ads in our weekly Inner Circle emails. Over the years several customers have asked about placing an ad in our weekly Inner Circle.

Here are the options and the costs.

Ads can be from any individual or company. It needs to be automotive related, meaning it does not need to be specifically Turbo Regal related. It can be for something for sale or something wanted.

Maximum number of words is 125 words, which is about 7 to 9 lines of copy. No photos. You can list a website. We recommend you state your name, phone number or email, a price, and your location in your ad.

The cost for 2 consecutive weeks is $25. The cost for 4 consecutive weeks is $40. You save $10 with the 4-week plan. No changes can be made to your existing running ad. You can only run one ad at any given time. We will have a code system at the end of your ad, so we will know what week number your ad is to run - 2 or 4 weeks.

It can be an ad for something for sale or an ad for something you are looking for.
We have never missed a single week since we started the Inner Circle email format in 2009. It’s something I enjoy doing and I just always seem to have enough material to write about.

Our weekly Inner Circle reaches over 3,400 members every Wednesday direct to their inbox. The Inner Circle also appears every Wednesday on our website with the related photos. Your ad would be visible to both groups of readers. So, the exposure to your ad is well over 3,400 potential buyers.

Ads submitted properly by the previous Sunday would appear that next Wednesday in the weekly Inner Circle. Ads must be submitted by email to - [email protected]

Payment by credit card must be done by phone to our office 215-766-1611.


If you are not able to see the Buick Rare Parts section at the end of this Inner Circle, it is because you are not an Inner Circle member, but instead are reading this on the website. You must subscribe to see the Rare Parts section each week. It would go directly to your inbox every Wednesday afternoon. It is FREE, probably one reason why nobody complains about what I write about. To subscribe simply email – [email protected] - to get our free weekly Inner Circle email.

The Buick Rare Parts section is only viewed by those that subscribe. Subscription is free, so complaints on what I write are nonexistent!


NOTE - If you email us and do NOT get a timely reply, be sure to check your “SPAM” folder. Some emails do not go through.

If you need to email us, use - [email protected]


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. Please remember I have very little knowledge of the mechanical workings of the engine.



One thing that has been missing all these years for the Turbo Regal owner is a nice stainless black powder-coated license plate frame. We have designed several with a unique tagline referring to some of the most collectible high-performance car models.

We have come up with the various designs shown in Photo 2.

The handsome metal black license plate frame measures 12-1/4″ x 6-1/4″, which is the standard size to hold state license plates. Frames are made from stainless steel, then powder-coated black for lasting quality.

Included with each frame is a packet of new attaching hardware, complete with black caps so the hardware doesn’t show.

Each frame comes with the decal already affixed. Most of the decals are white wording on a black background. Several decals are two colors (white and red) on a black background.

Notice the font style for the tagline “HIGH OUTPUT V6” decal matches the 3.8 sfi turbo hood emblems.

We also offer each decal separately in case you would like to apply it to any signs, a toolbox, etc.

Choose from the selection below.

NOTE - We offer the decals for $5 each. If you contact the office at 215-766-1611, you can purchase more than one decal at a time for a lower price. Example - Buy any 2 decals for $8.95 (save $2.05.) You must call to order multiple decals.

8010-F (FRAME) - License Plate Frame with “A BOOST OF BUICK PERFORMANCE” White, Red and Black Decal - $14.95
8010-D (DECAL ONLY) - “A BOOST OF BUICK PERFORMANCE” White, Red and Black Decal - $5

8011-F (FRAME) - License Plate Frame with “B-B-B-B-BAD TO THE BONE!” White and Black Decal - $14.95
8011-D (DECAL ONLY) - “B-B-B-B-BAD TO THE BONE!” Decal - $5

8012-F (FRAME) - License Plate Frame with “ONE OF THE FORTUNATE 547″ White and Black Decal - $14.95
8012-D (DECAL ONLY) - “ONE OF THE FORTUNATE 547″ White and Black Decal - $5

8013-F (FRAME) - License Plate Frame with “GNX FOR THE FORTUNATE 547″ White, Red and Black Decal - $14.95
8013 D (DECAL ONLY) - “GNX FOR THE FORTUNATE 547″ White, Red and Black Decal - $5

8014-F (FRAME) - License Plate Frame with “BUICK’S QUICKEST V6″ White and Black Decal - $14.95
8014-D (DECAL ONLY) - “BUICK’S QUICKEST V6″ White and Black Decal - $5

8015-F (FRAME) - License Plate Frame with “LIFE IN THE FAST LANE” White, Red and Black Decal - $14.95
8015-D (DECAL ONLY) - “LIFE IN THE FAST LANE” White, Red and Black Decal - $5

8016-F (FRAME) - License Plate Frame with “HIGH OUTPUT V6″ White and Black Decal - $14.95
8016-D (DECAL ONLY) - “HIGH OUTPUT V6″ White and Black Decal - $5

8017-F (FRAME) - License Plate Frame with “GSX BEATS YOU IN STAGES” White, Red and Black Decal - $14.95
8017-D (DECAL ONLY) - “GSX BEATS YOU IN STAGES” White, Red and Black Decal - $5

8018-F (FRAME) - License Plate Frame with “GS FAST WITH CLASS” White, Red and Black Decal - $14.95
8018-D (DECAL ONLY) - “GS FAST WITH CLASS” White, Red and Black Decal - $5

CLICK HERE - For the link to these license plates and decals on our website


Usually the more expensive GM cars have a nice holder for their Owner’s Manual.

Originally Buick put all the documents in a plain clear plastic bag. Since these turbo cars didn’t come with a holder in the car, we’ve designed one.

Our black vinyl Owner’s Manual holder measures 6-3/4" x 10" and fits perfectly in your glove box.

The words “A BOOST OF BUICK PERFORMANCE” appear in silver below the flap.

There are two business card holders on the flap. You can insert your insurance company agent’s business card or your mechanic’s business card.

This holder is great for storing the Owner’s Manual, Warranty cards, insurance papers, service records, etc.

It also makes a great gift item for any car enthusiast.
An excellent protection for your Owner’s Manual and documents.

7918 - “A BOOST OF BUICK PERFORMANCE” Owner’s Manual Holder - $14.95

CLICK HERE - For the link to the option to order one or two fender covers.


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. We also may buy your new or used parts. 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 used if you are using the current version.


We have heard from a couple people that have viewed the photos on the website. Because these must 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 directly - [email protected] - and 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.


We are always seeking good used Turbo Regal parts and NOS parts. Either trade value against our catalog items or we will purchase outright if you sold your car.

Please, if you have any original 1986-1987 Turbo Regal turbos, cash them in with us for the $175 Letter-of-Credit. This helps us help our customers obtain the rebuilt turbo they want for their car.