Greetings Turbo Regal Inner Circle Members - 09-08-10
BUICK LITERATURE - PART 8
Without a doubt, in the world of Turbo Buick literature, one of the most expensive items in demand is the hardbound GNX book. As many of you know, there are 2 versions. The limited version was the numbered ones dedicated originally to go to every original GNX owner. This would account for 547 individually numbered books. While the intention was good, this did not happen in many cases. When the GNXs were being sold, some were bought by speculators and then resold. In some cases, the first noted owner was not aware of the book, or someone else had claimed the numbered book prior to first registered owner.
Over the years, we have personally had over 300 of the GNX books. The question always comes up, "How many did they print?" I really don't know. My guess? Anywhere from 2,000 to 5,000 books. I am basing this on the fact it was printed in the USA and because of the quality of the book and unique cover in order to keep the costs down you need to print a decent quantity. Molly was the design consultant, and the printing company was located in his area.
Some of you may recall a few years back we had several of the special numbered original GNX books. At the time, Molly contacted me since he still had about 90 of them that were never claimed by their owners. I ended up buying all of them and sold most of them.
PHOTO 1 - The photo on the top left shows the cover of the GNX book. The photo on the top right shows page 1 in the GNX numbered 11 book. Notice the book also has Molly's autograph on the page. It appears that the line of copy, "Buick GNX, printing limited to 547 editions, this is number" was preprinted in the 547 books and then a numbered stamp may have been used to individually number each book. This would have been the least expensive method to do this. Plus the actual number appears in a different font style.
In larger print run of the other GNX books, page 1 is blank except for the page number 1.
The lower photo shows pages 2 and 3 with a beautiful shot of 2 GNX prototypes. The line at the bottom reads, "GNX prototypes No. 1 and No. 2 at Milan Dragway, Milan, Michigan, October 24, 1986."
PHOTO 2 - The photo on the top shows a copy of the letter dated May 12, 1988 that the registered GNX owner at that time would have received from Molly Designs. The letter talked about obtaining the numbered GNX book and the handsome Molly Design GNX jacket. The letter goes on to state both the GNX numbered book and GNX jacket would be sent to them FREE. Owners had to supply their GNX car number and their 17-digit VIN number.
The bottom photo on the left shows a copy of the envelope you would have received. The bottom right photo shows the back of the postcard you would have had to fill out and return to Molly Designs in California.
For many years, most of us had no idea that Molly played such an important role of the GNX project. In looking back, I wish I had gotten Molly to sign all the GNX books I had when he came out to some of our events!
I know some of you were fortunate enough to have Molly sign various things, including GNX books, when he was out here in the fall of 2007 for my 60th birthday bash.
Here is the text from the letter -
"May 12, 1988
Dear GNX Owner:
Congratulations on being one of the fortunate 547 people who own a Buick/ASC GNX automobile.
We are presently completing a beautiful hard cover book detailing the design, development and production of the GNX. It is full of facts and lavish pictures, employing the finest printing and binding.
Additionally, we have designed a handsome jacket, exclusively for GNX owners.
Both the book and the jacket are yours free of charge. Simple fill in the enclosed post-paid card and return to us as soon as possible. We need to know the number of your GNX, as well as the VIN number, plus your jacket size. Both will be mailed in early July.
This is our way of not only enhancing the value of your car, but of saying "thank you" from Buick and ASC.
Another unique item to each GNX would be the 10-page 1987 Owners Manual Supplement.
PHOTO 3 - The top photo shows a GNX 1987 Owner's Manual Supplement autographed by Molly from my private collection. This manual covers the unique additions the GNX had over the standard Turbo Regal. The lower photo shows the illustration of the unique Turbo minus the shield. The arrow points to the contamination trap that the regular Turbo Regal turbos did not have. I donâ€™t claim to be an expert on GNXs. I'm only relating information from my private collection. Like many of you, we could never afford a real GNX back when they were new. However, over the years, we have bought and sold 8 real GNXs.
Earlier we mentioned Quality Engineering, which later changed their company name to Advanced Vehicle Concepts. For years they produced a GNX-style dash cluster that can be found on some of the cars today. While attending last weekend's event at Englishtown, New Jersey, I did see one of the original Advanced Vehicles Concept dashes.
In reference to last week's Inner Circle, we heard from one of our customers who had the dash installed at our one Reunion Event at the Johnsville airbase. He even emailed me a copy of his receipt. He paid $625 for the dash and $150 to have it installed back in June of 1992. The sad news is, a year later (1993), his car was stolen!
PHOTO 4 - Shows several views of the Advanced Vehicles Concept GNX-style dash. The lower right photo shows a close up of their AVC logo that was silk screened in the lower right hand corner of the cluster.
Watch for more Buick Literature next week - Part 9
Like many of you Turbo Buick owners, we are grateful that GM still produces a limited amount of the parts for our cars. However, the one disturbing thing is how they arrive at some of the retail prices. I realize costs go up every time an item is re-run but, in most cases, the tooling and molds still exist.
One example of an item I think GM has really overpriced is the plastic upper dash trim panel. The current suggested retail price of this is now $219.30. Plus, if you ordered it from any local GM dealer, unless you dealt with them frequently you would have to give them a deposit and it would have to be special ordered. This plastic upper dash trim panel only fits the 1984-1987 Regals. The part is not unique to the Turbo Regal, meaning they produced thousands of these during the 4-year run. They were used on all Regals during that time span.
We all know what happens, heat causes them to crack, especially around the speaker grilles. Since I have retained all our old catalogs, I thought I would share with you how the price on this particular part has escalated since 1987.
I have a GM price book dated December 1987. In that price book the suggested GM list price was $46.75 for the plastic upper dash trim panel. Trade price, which is what a dealer like us would get it for, was $37.50.
So, in round numbers 23 years later with a suggested retail price of $219.30 this particular part has increased in price by just over 4 times its original suggested retail price. In looking through our old catalogs, it appears we first started to offer it in late 1999. At that time we sold them for $90 each.
During the next several years, the price jumped to $104. Which was still within reason. It stayed at the $104 retail price from 1999 through 2006. In our 2007 catalog (20th anniversary) the price was $114.95. That was the last year we did a printed catalog. So, from 2007 until now (2010) the price has close to double based on the new $219.30 suggested price. They all come in an off blue color, and in a box so big you could put 6 or more into it!
I am sure if I was given enough time I could come up with a few other examples where prices seem to go through the roof when compared to 15-20 years ago for the same part.
DISCONTINUED PARTS -
6787 - 1986 Turbo Regal - Aftermarket Power Steering Cap
6788 - 1987 Turbo Regal - Aftermarket Power Steering Cap
NEW PART AVAILABLE - "GRAND NATIONAL" and "INTERCOOLED" MAGNETIC DECALS -
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. These are 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
"GRAND NATIONAL" and "INTERCOOLED" MAGNETIC DECALS
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 ON SHIPPING COSTS -
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.
PERSONAL 1997 RIVIERA HAS BEEN SOLD -
The new owner of our Riviera comes this Saturday for the car. I also have a second party that wants it badly should that deal fall through.
NOTE ABOUT PHOTOS ON THE WEBSITE -
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]
GREAT NEWS - COMING SOON - CUSTOM-MADE EMBROIDERED TRUNK KITS -
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.
URGENT REQUEST - WE NEED Turbo CORES! -
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.
ALWAYS IN A BUYING POSITION WORKS -
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.
GM PARTS UPDATE -
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
CALENDER OF EVENTS -
2010 UPCOMING BUICK RELATED EVENTS -
11th ANNUAL PONTIAC AND BUICK CAR SHOW
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
ALL BUICK JUDGED CAR SHOW SATURDAY THE 2ND HOSTED BY MAGNA (Mid-Atlantic Grand National Association)
OCTOBER 1st and 2nd, 2010 - FRIDAY and SATURDAY Gates open 9 AM
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]
5th ANNUAL OKTOBERFEST - ALL GM SHOW
OCTOBER 2nd, 2010
Silver Springs, Ocala, Florida
For more information, go to their website -
KIRBAN PERFORMANCE PRODUCTS - FALL OPEN HOUSE -
Saturday OCTOBER 9th, 2010 - 9 am - 3 pm
6201 Kellers Church Road, Plumsteadville, PA
This event happens rain, shine, or snow.
Free Yum Yum donuts and coffee.
Save on shipping! Pete and I will have an array of bargains on used parts. Paul Castle, World of Motorworks will also be here.
Pick up a supply of ZDDPlus™.
We just got word that Chris and Ron who own CustomAutoApparel.com will be set up at our open house. They are fully GM licensed and will have a large array of Turbo Regal related apparel available. They attended my 60th birthday bash as well. Ron was the original owner of GNX #547.
Since last Spring's Open House we have gathered many more good used Turbo parts, some of which are too big to ship. Priced to sell. Come early as bargains and the Yum Yum donuts go quickly.
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
EBAY LISTINGS -
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 -
ABOUT OUR EMAILS -
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.
IN CLOSING -
With fall weather coming, enjoy the crisp weather since cooler air translates into more power. It's also a great photo opportunity for taking pictures of your pride and joy with the colorful trees.