09-01-10 Inner Circle

09-01-10 Inner Circle

Greetings Turbo Regal Inner Circle Members - 09-01-10 -


Last week's article concerning 3 of the early Turbo companies netted us responses from several of our readers. In one case, it turns out our customer has a Quality Engineering dash. I forgot to mention that Quality Engineering later did change their name to AVC, which was short for Advanced Vehicle Concepts. The letters AVC can usually be seen silk screened on their lens in the one lower corner.

Another customer mentioned he has the Kenne Bell ram air system and also that Kenne Bell made a passenger's side air dam with scoop to match the driver's side air scoop. This customer piped the passenger's side scoop opening to bring cooler air to his turbo. He also has an ATR exhaust system. They offered a number of different sizes and versions of stainless steel dual exhaust systems, which you could still find in use today.

A while ago we took apart a Grand National that had one of ATR's stainless dual exhaust systems with their Pit Bull mufflers. Their Pit Bull Mufflers featured center-to-center inlet and outlet.

Many of you probably remember when we did our monthly printed newsletter entitled "GRAND NEWS." We published Grand News on a month-to-month basis starting in July 1988 and every month until December of 2002. Since then we switched to a mid-weekly emailed format that is completely free.

In the late 1980s, there was another publication that did a bi-monthly newsletter entitled "THE TURBO BOOST" in connection with a magazine called Turbo Magazine.

PHOTO 1 - Shows an assortment of some of the early issues of The Official Newsletter of the Turbo Club of America, "THE TURBO BOOST." Their first issue VOLUME 1, NUMBER 1 was dated October 1987. They changed the name of the newsletter to "TURBO NEWS" in 1989. They ran about 16 pages in length and covered any related Turbo application, not just Turbo Regals. They came out every 2 months. The ones shown here are from 1987-1989.

Back then companies like Texas Turbo, Kodiak West, Spearco, Cartech, Turbonetics, Turbo City, ANS Performance, were some of the other players that advertised in these newsletters. I remember all these names. Spearco, for example, back in the day made an intercooler system for the 1984-1985 Turbo Regals. Not an easy feat considering the turbo is in the back of the motor!

Kodiak West made engine cap covers and chrome turbo shields. They were quite pricey, but excellent quality. I had a set of their engine caps on our personal 1987 Grand National and their chrome-plated turbo shield. This company got into the business because the owner bought a Grand National, and since he owned a machine shop, they could make the parts. ANS Performance, was located near Chicago, Illinois and worked on these cars. We used to sell them parts. Another shop was Dynotech in New Jersey. The original owner was Fred Vetter. He had one of the quickest cars in the day. He did a lot of work on our personal Grand National and Syclone.

For custom interior upgrades the big name back in the day was Bowling Green Customs, operated originally by Lloyd Tarter. He lives in Bowling Green, Kentucky hence the name! He got his start because he owned a Grand National. Lloyd worked for many years at the Corvette factory and is now retired. He makes many items today, including parts for our Turbo Regals, which we sell in our catalog along with various Corvette parts. Years ago he sold his original company, which continued to used his name Bowling Green Customs even though it was located in Georgia.

I can remember in the late 1980s and early 1990s, Lloyd Tarter and our company were the main two vendors at the GS Nationals catering to the Turbo Regals.

Today, most of the companies I have mentioned above have closed their doors or moved on to other endeavors.

These are just some of the other players that made various parts for the Turbo Regals back when they were new or almost new. Sometimes at major Buick meets, you can find some of these "antique" parts for sale.

Watch for more Buick Literature next week - Part 8


I went to Corvettes at Carlisle this past Friday. If this event is not the biggest in the country for Corvette, it must be 1 of the top 2. There had to be close to 2,000 Corvettes in attendance. As usual, the older Corvettes are still quite expensive to buy. I was surprised to see such a large number of barn finds (Corvettes that owners simply tucked away for 25-35 years and neglected.)

As for any bargains? I would say early C5s (1997-1999) were quite reasonable, priced from $13,500 to $21,500. Currently, the better buy for the money and performance is any 2002 through 2004 Z06. I saw prices ranging from $22,500 to $28,500. Hard to beat a 405 hp for that kind of money. NOTE - The 2001 Z06 Corvettes had 385 hp.

Most Corvettes are low mileage to start with. Some of the parts for the older Corvettes are extremely expensive. If you needed a correct jack for an early C2 Corvette, I saw them priced $600 to $750 each!

PHOTO 2 - The top photo shows a nice display of 6 of the early Corvette Fuel Injection systems, all priced between $8,500 and $9,500. This would probably be the rarest option available on the early Corvettes. The lower photo shows a 1960 Corvette, obviously in pieces for the princely sum of $11,500 or best offer! Both photos were taken on August 27, 2010 at the Corvettes at Carlisle event.

PHOTO 3 - The top photo shows a unique display of Corvettes on the one hill. They arranged over 125 red, white, and blue Corvettes to look like the American Flag. I tried my best to take this photo. This was pretty cool to see. The lower photo shows tires for sale. Some of the mid-1980s Corvettes took a Goodyear Eagle GT tire similar in size to the ones found on our Turbo Buicks. Here you see four new ones priced at $500 each! Both photos were taken on August 28, 2010 at the Corvettes at Carlisle event.

Here is a link to a better picture of the CORVETTE flag formation on at the Edmunds Inside Line website -


Besides attending Corvettes and Carlisle on Friday, on Saturday I went to the "Wheels of Time 32nd Annual Rod & Custom Jamboree" car show in nearby Macungie, Pennsylvania. It was a picture perfect day. This event draws about 2,000 cars of all makes and models, most of them were street rods. At their show, they actually have events to tests your skills and see how well you know your car.

PHOTO 4 - The top photo shows a participant trying his luck at balancing his car on this aluminum platform. The trick was to carefully inch your way forward so the platform is balanced and not touching the ground in the front or the back. It takes patience and ability to inch your car perfectly in order to balance the platform! The lower photo shows a highly-chromed Ford engine that was in one of the high-end street rods at this event. Both photos were taken on August 27, 2010 at the Wheels of Time event.

SEPTEMBER 4th & 5th, 2010 - Gates Open 11 am SATURDAY - 8 am SUNDAY, Old Bridge Township Raceway Park, Englishtown, NJ

See Calendar of Events below for NEW information on this event this weekend.


We now carry a rubberized magnetic Grand National and Intercooler emblem set. These are identical in size, color, and font style to the ones that appear on the fenders and trunk lid. Ideal for a toolbox or to simply place on your car at a car show.

These decals are GM licensed.

The best deal is to buy the full set of 3 Grand National emblems and 2 Intercooler emblems for just $19.95. We have them in stock

See below for complete information.

1984-1987 Grand National - GM LICENSED

These magnetic "GRAND NATIONAL" (5-1/4" x 1-7/8") and "INTERCOOLED" (3-1/2" x 1/4") decals are both fully licensed by GM.

These are made from .032 rubberized magnetic material and are identical in size and type style as the original emblems.

Since these are magnetic, you can choose to put them on your Grand National and remove them when you do not want any emblems on your car. They are also a cheaper alternative to the expensive original metal GM ones! They are also a nice addition to any metal car show display board or metal toolboxes in your garage.

NOTE - Because of the metallic finish, these decals are difficult to photograph. Photo to the right shows them on a Grand National.

An excellent finishing touch for any Grand National.

7277 - 1984-1987 Grand National - GM Licensed
"GRAND NATIONAL" Magnetic Decal - $7

7278 - 1984-1987 Grand National - GM Licensed
"INTERCOOLED" Magnetic Decal - $3

7279 - 1984-1987 Grand National - GM Licensed
SET OF 5 MAGNETIC DECALS - $19.95 (Save $7.05)
Includes 3 "GRAND NATIONAL" and 2 "INTERCOOLED" Magnetic Decals

Here is a link to these decals on our website -


NOTE - Due to the automated UPS shipping rate calculations on our website, lighter items sometimes come up with high shipping costs. If you have a question on the shipping rate, please call our office to place your order. We can calculate correct shipping for the lighter weight items.

In some instances, we will make adjustments on shipping before charging your card. It is difficult to get shipping rates to work out perfectly all the time, especially if you only purchase a single item or if it can be shipped by mail. The new magnetic decals (Part #7277, #7278 & #7279) are examples where shipping would be less, as would be most of our other decals.


We still have our 1997 Riviera for sale. It has every possible option and is supercharged. We really would like to see it go to someone into Buicks. The price is now $4995. The garage that does all our work says I can put it down there for sale anytime I want and it should sell.

Every record, window sticker, and receipt goes with this car. This car is clean enough inside and out and underneath to enter in any car show. It's been garage kept and never smoked in.

You can email me personally for photos - [email protected]


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.

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 ones you want to see - Reference Inner Circle date and photo number 1, 2, 3 or 4 - [email protected]


Because of many requests, we will be offering 16 new custom-made embroidered Trunk Kits - GREY or BLACK carpet material - 8-Piece or 11-Piece Kits - featuring the T-Type, Grand National, GNX and Buick Motorsports logos. All kits are GM licensed. These should go up on our website soon. Watch for more information in next week's Inner Circle.


We just received news that the GNX-style wheels are now in stock! We have only been able to get a few sets for over a year. If you are interested, call our office - 215-766-1611.

Here's a link to these wheels on our website -
http://www.kirbanperformance.com/product/478/GNX - TRANS AM STYLE 16" x 8" WHEELS SET (4) #7219.html

Here's complete information about these impressive wheels.

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 the 1984-1987 Regals. These resemble the popular original GNX wheels. 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 clearcoated. Wheels have the proper offset to fit under your 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 "TURBOCHARGED" 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 "TURBOCHARGED" 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.

Wheels are dropped shipped from California. We would send your receipt, 20 lug nuts, 4 center caps, 4 wheel decals, and 4 valve stems direct from our Pennsylvania location. Shipping is calculated from California, generally costs about $65-$125.


7219 - 1984-1987 Regal - GNX - TRANS AM STYLE 16" x 8" Wheels Set $955 plus shipping

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 "TURBOCHARGED" center cap decals.

NOTE - Shipping costs generally run $65 to $125, depending on your location.



We need stock 1986-1987 Turbo Regal turbos for cores.

For each complete turbo you send us, you will received either a check for $75 for or a Letter of Credit for $100 for any parts listed on our website. Just specify which you want for your turbo.

By sending us complete cores, it enables us to supply other owners with rebuilt units and also our TA 49 versions. The TA 49 turbos we sell require the use of the stock exhaust housing. By using that section, no low-end torque is lost in regular street driving.

THANK YOU for helping to keep the parts available for other Turbo Regal owners.


Got any Turbo 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.


The upper dash trim panel, Part #6780 is now $189.95.


It appears that the GM supply of the factory 1986-1987 GM factory original molded boost line kits are dwindling and may already have disappeared from GM's warehouses inventory. We currently have a decent supply of them.

This is a very critical part, for any 1986-1987 Turbo Regal, since it is needed to control boost. They have 3 specially formed hoses with a special size diameter T in between two of the molded hoses. These also have the GM wording on them.

Over a period of time, heat can cause the hoses to swell and crack. While they last, we have them available for $44.95 plus shipping, Part #6644. Supplies are limited.

Here is a link to the Boost Line Kit on our web site -
http://www.kirbanperformance.com/product/160/GM Factory Original BOOST LINE KIT #6644.html


We still have a few brand new GM right hand side marker lights with the blackout package. This is the marker light that attaches to the side of the headlight bezels. Price is $61.95 plus shipping.

If you are interested in any of these parts, you must call our office to purchase it. Some of these close out items are just about gone from the GM parts system.



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.

SEPTEMBER 4th & 5th, 2010 - Gates Open 11 am Saturday - 8 am Sunday, Old Bridge Township Raceway Park, Englishtown, NJ
For more information, call - 732-446-7800 or 845-528-GSGN (ask for John).

I plan to attend this event on Saturday, September 4th. I will be set up in the Buick portion of the car show as a vendor. We would have ZDDPlus™ there as well as used Turbo Regal parts. I may only be there Saturday. Remember, the gates do not open Saturday until around 11 am!

Labor Day Weekend as always, the Northeast GS/GN Club will once again be stationed at Raceway Park. Hemmings Musclepalooza event will be the major tenant of the weekend, as they were last year, but we will have our "Buickland" area set up off to one side. After a one-year hiatus from running our Buick car show, we will be back in the mix with that, albeit on a smaller scale than in previous years. The number of entries in our show had been steadily dwindling for years prior to last year's Musclepalooza takeover. We have been granted our own show by Raceway Park's management, but if we don't get a halfway decent turnout, I'm sure next year we will be rolled right back into the Musclepalooza show like we were last year.

The Buick Car Show is SATURDAY. It's up to you to see that doesn't happen. Our Buick Car Show will have six classes on Saturday:

1. '65 to 77 Skylark/GS Stock
2. '78 to '02 Regal/T/GN Stock
3. '65 to '77 Skylark/GS Modified
4. '78 to '02 Regal/T/GN Modified
5. All other Buick
6. Concours

Trophies will be given for 1st and 2nd place only, unless there are less than five cars in a class, in which case only 1st place will be awarded.

As far as race classes are concerned, on Saturday when you get to tech you will have your choice of two "Buick Only" race classes (in which all cars MUST be Buick powered)....the Buick Trophy Class if you want to race for fun (and a trophy), or the Buick Gamblers Race if you want to race for money. The Gamblers will cost you $20, which we will be collecting in the lanes.

On Sunday we will be running our qualified Buick-powered Quick-16, which this year will require a $20 non-refundable entry fee. We lost a few sponsors this year, so we need to make up some of that money for payouts. That entry fee will be collected in the lanes before the first round of qualifying on Sunday morning. The payouts for Quick-16 are as follows:

Winner - $700
Runner-up - $300
Semis - $100 each
Quarters - $50 each
LQ V8 - $100
LQ V6 - $100

In addition, as we did last year, we will be paying $100 to the Buick (with a Buick engine) that goes the furthest in each of the nine Hemmings bracket classes. That is in addition to and separate from whatever payouts Hemmings has arranged with Raceway Park.

With Sponsors dropping out and the economy showing no sign of an immediate turnaround, we appreciate the sponsors who have stuck with us, as well as those who have been forced to regroup until things improve. Please patronize our sponsors when you have a need for their products and let them know your appreciate the support they give us year after year!

We'd like to acknowledge and thank the following sponsors:

Buick Performance Group
Auto Center at Readers Digest
Scotty's Racing Technologies
Jack Merkel Performance Engines
Cotton's Performance Center
Kirban Performance Products
Ultimate Convertors
Stage 1 Performance
TA Performance

Sunday - SEPTEMBER 19th, 2010 - 10 am - 3 pm - Rain or Shine.
Star Pontiac, Buick GMC - 260 Country Club Road, Easton, PA 18045
Music, food and drinks, dash plaques, awards, door prizes.
For more information, go to their website -
or email - [email protected]

EAST COAST BUICK REGIONALS AND FAST (factory appearing stock tire) EVENT
OCTOBER 1st and 2nd, 2010 - FRIDAY and SATURDAY Gates open 9AM
Cecil County Dragway, Maryland
The car show is open to all Buick's from 1965 to 2003. Goodie bags, 50/50 and other prizes for show cars!
This is their 14th annual event! - Free vending.
For more information, contact Doug Dougherty at 302-653-2201 or
John Csordas at 845-528-GSGN.
NOTE - Dates are Friday and Saturday!
or email - [email protected] - or - [email protected] - or - [email protected]

OCTOBER 2nd, 2010
Silver Springs, Ocala, Florida
For more information, go to their website -

Saturday OCTOBER 9th, 2010 - 9 am - 3 pm
6201 Kellers Church Road, Plumsteadville, PA
Save on shipping! Pete and I will have an array of bargains on used parts.
This event happens rain, shine, or snow.
Free Yum Yum donuts and coffee.
Watch for more information in weeks to come.

The Blackhawk Chapter of the POCI presents the
23rd ANNUAL DRAG RACING FUN DAY - Especially for Buicks, Oldsmobiles & Pontiacs
OCTOBER 9, 2010 - Saturday - Gates open at 9 am - Eliminations at 1 pm
In the Midwest is an all BOP event Buick-Oldsmobile-Pontiac.
The location is Cordova Dragway Park in Cordova, Illinois.
Click on the link below for more information.

30th ANNUAL GS NATIONALS - Beech Bend Raceway, Bowling Green, Kentucky
OCTOBER 20th-23rd, 2010
This has been rescheduled from the cancelled May dates. Unfortunately, Don Garlits will not be able to attend as the dates conflict with an event he does at his Museum in Ocala. Florida. For more information, including registration and vendor details, go to their website and then click on GS Nationals - http://www.gsnationals.com


If you would like to see any of the 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.


Hope to see many of you Saturday at Englishtown, New Jersey. We will be set up with many used parts and ZDDPlus&trade. Look for us by the Buick portion of the car show, sponsored by the Northeast Chapter of the GS Club.

Saturday, OCTOBER 9th, 2010 - 9 am - 3 pm
6201 Kellers Church Road, Plumsteadville, PA
Save on shipping! Pete and I will have an array of bargains on used parts.
This event happens rain, shine, or snow.
Free Yum Yum donuts and coffee.
Watch for more information in weeks to come.