1996 Buick Roadmaster Estate Wagon for sale

Sold as of January 2, 2017

This car has served me quite well for years working in tandem with my heavy duty pickup truck to do the things I need. The Buick was great for hauling various loads including full 4×8 sheet goods – plywood, drywall, whatever. The truck handled that stuff better but wasn’t nearly as comfortable. Sadly my truck died and I decided to replace it with a Chevy Tahoe that also takes the place of this car. Continue reading “1996 Buick Roadmaster Estate Wagon for sale”

New Vehicle time

I used my pickup truck several times on the interstate recently. The vibration I’ve noticed before got worse. I checked the U-joints and they were sound. That meant the problem was elsewhere. Looking at the bottom side of the truck I decided to trade it in.

I found a 2009 Chevy Tahoe LTZ with a lot of great features used at a dealer in Kingsport. It had been there quite a while and the price was down already. When I called about it the price dropped again. Continue reading “New Vehicle time”

I don’t think that’s gonna hold air.

Crawling around under my 1996 Buick Roadmaster Estate I discovered one of the air bags I have connected to the self leveling suspension has blown out. Since it was in the direction facing the nearest part of the exhaust I assume it was heat related. Ironically when I tried to reposition the heat shield some it broke off and I had to replace the shield and the air bag. Luckily I had bought a new set and installed it when I last worked on the suspension. The old set was still on my shelf since I didn’t see any problems with it.

Picture of an automotive air bag inside a coil spring. Air bag has blowout hole.
Most likely the heat shields weren’t enough to keep the exhaust heat from melting this while I sat idling. Note to self; don’t sit idling.

Clip on Camaro


Aligning the front clip as it's lowered
Aligning the front clip as it’s lowered

I got some surprise help from a neighbor while my father in law was also around. With all the help we dropped the front clip back on the Camaro. I’d been finished for a few weeks and just waiting for some help at this.

The car is finished and we drove it yesterday. Next I need to try to figure out what’s up with the carb. It just doesn’t feel right. There are several rattles still present from the exhaust being too close to the frame and possibly from the jack in the trunk. My goal is to make it quiet and solid.

Ceramic coated exhaust manifold



While doing some work on Nat’s 1968 Camaro I had to take the exhaust manifolds off. While I had them off I used a grinder and some files to clean up the mold flash. Once cleaned up I took them out to be ceramic coated. The coating not only makes them look better but it also keeps heat contained and sends it out the exhaust to the pipes.

Manifold bolted in place
Manifold bolted in place

This is the passenger side bolted in place.

Manifold bolted to engine
Ceramic coated exhaust manifold bolted up

This is the driver’s side. They don’t stand out except as clean. I like it.

I can fix this.

Snowballs in April? How about a snowballing project.

First the motor mounts. Symptoms suggested they were tired and needed to be replaced. Removing them showed that the problem was they weren’t bolted in properly. Okay, one project done.

On the first drive afterwards I noticed antifreeze dripping on the passenger side floormat. Dangit. Heater core. Well, while the dash is apart I can fix the lights on the dash that have been burned out for so long Natalie didn’t even know they existed.

Putting the heater core back in properly took a bit more work that I anticipated. I needed to remove the right side inner fender. Counting bolts, shims, and other issues turned out to be more work than I wanted to tackle but I was kinda stuck.

Perfect. I can fix some of the air leaks coming through the firewall.
Perfect. I can fix some of the air leaks coming through the firewall.

Hard to believe this was easier than taking one inner fender off.

Hm. Clutch fan, water pump, what else?
Hm. Clutch fan, water pump, what else?


Amazing how easy it was to remove.
Amazing how easy it was to remove.
It's a little tempting to crawl around under this cleaning and polishing.
It’s a little tempting to crawl around under this cleaning and polishing.

At the end of it all the exhaust manifolds will have been ceramic coated, new bolts will hold the exhaust together, and there will be a new water pump keeping the cool. Also the radiator is going to have to be cleaned and resoldered because it shows a leak. The heater core will be new and well mounted. Lights in the dash will work and one of the heater controls has been disconnected for some time. Oh and a major vacuum leak will be fixed.

If I get lucky and a parts store employee comes through the car may also get power steering. That’ll help Nat drive her own car.