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Thread: 1962 Coupe De Ville : Fancy paint update

  1. #1
    ♠ LBCC Chicagoland ♠

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    1962 Coupe De Ville : Fancy paint update

    After my first couple lowrider/custom cars (full story) I took a long 15 year hiatus from custom cars. Finishing college, moving to Chicago, starting my career, starting a business, buying a house, gut-rehabbing the house and marrying my favorite barmaid were all major contributing factors in this hiatus. There was always something that had to get done. But then the pace began to settle and there was a little cash in the bank and garage where I could park a project... it was finally time for another car.

    I started looking for '61/'62 Coupe De Villes in the summer of '06. I'd always loved the lines on these years - the quad fins, the side dent, the way the trunk lid transitions into the rear fenders and those beautiful color-matched wheel covers. It took me a year of looking at restored cars, basket cases and everything in between. Then in July of '07 while routinely searching misspelling of Cadillac. I came across a poorly worded ad with a grainy pic of the car's headlight, it was located a few miles away at '71st and South Shore.

    The seller had suffered a stroke (he was in his late 20's, early 30's) - hence the poorly worded ad and misspelling of Cadillac. He'd been trying to sell the car for the past 3 years, every year knocking a grand off the price. He'd owned it for the past 5 or 6 years, only driving it occasionally the first year until he had his stroke. So there it sat in this leaky enclosed 2 story parking garage. The car had not been started in years, it just sat and got dripped on. I threw a couple gallons of gas in it and the battery out of my car. Took some coaxing, but it fired up and we went for a test drive. It died every block or so and the brakes were scary as hell. But the frame and floorboards were solid and it was somewhat presentable. Nothing special. In his broken stutters of sentences, the owner told me the car was original and I had little reason to doubt him. The rust was in the typical trouble spots, the patina on everything matched, the carpet was stained and I recognized the color from 1962 sales materials. It looked as though no real effort had been put into preserving it, yet not neglected either.

    We struck a deal and on July 30th 2007, I drove the caddy home (sorta). Here she is that night, after a hardcore washing.




    I had no set plans for the car. I just wanted something the drive the wheels off of. Something I could take my time with. Maybe I'd restore it, maybe I'd drop it, it didn't matter. I finally had the car I'd waited so long to own. The more I drove it the better it ran, topped off the fluids and bled the brakes. It was a good cruising summer and fall. It left me stranded a few times and it had a few erratic electrical gremlins. But I enjoyed the car more and more with every mile... That said, most of my driving is in traffic with pedestrians, bike messengers and tourists wandering out into the street to take a picture of some point of interest. I damn near killed a few people that fall, and stalled out in more than a few downtown intersections. The car wasn't fit for city driving. Work was needed to make it as dependable and as safe as possible.

    In January of 2008, I dropped off the Cadillac to Weimer Machine in Berwyn Il. It's a family owned business with a good crew of longtime employees and they came highly recommended from several folks I'd met at little shows in the area. Initially, I was looking for a rebuilt carb and to have the brakes gone through. But as the situation was assessed and goals for the car became clear, the work got to be far more extensive.

    Converting the front to disc, rebuilding and refinishing the rear drums to spec, all new lines, master cylinder, etc. Rebuild rear-end and new axels. New Edlebrock 4-barrel and fuel lines. new radiator core and hoses. And because virtually every suspension component was shot... new bushing, tie rods, ball joints, etc and an Air Ride suspension


    refinished rear drums


    disks up front


    Air-ride unpacking. I ordered two 5 gallon tanks (based on air-rides reco), though I'd hoped to only need one. I wanted the setup to be as clean and compact as possible. Though after a few tests it was obvious the second tank was needed.


    In order to keep the setup looking clean yet somewhat accessible, they installed everything but the tanks and compressor under the deck lid.


    final setup. I had them weld up some custom brackets to the first tank so that the second tank could be mounted above it. It actually looks cleaner with the two tanks, as the second hides everything under the deck lid and by stacking them I can still fit a few dead hookers back there.

    I picked it up from Weimer in June... almost 6 months to the day that I dropped it off. Felt so good to cruise a smooth running car with a dynamic suspension.



    And cruise her I did.

    Summer 2009: Head gasket failed due to warped heads. So heads were redone.
    Fall 2009: Fuel pump kicked it. Fixed it and parked the car for the winter.

    I got a bit sidetracked in 2009. Bought another vintage car to use as my daily. Which required way more work than I'd anticipated (new brakes, rebuild trans, new fuel tank, carb, fuck, fuck, fuck). And then I managed to get my wife pregnant. My caddy plans were going to have to wait.

    Summer 2010.
    Up until this point I'd spend approx 20 bucks on aesthetic improvements (aside from the bags). I'd been focused on making the car dependable and safe... and just driving the snot out of it. That was until I came across this board. I got excited about taking the car to the next level. Hung out with Rasputin once or twice, hit a couple cruises and got even more excited. (we can talk about the typical car guys here in Chicago at another time). I was no longer content to roll around on snow tires.

    Managed to find a set of mounted but never driven Star Wires on fresh tires. Brought them home, cleaned them up in the dark and slipped them on. With the smaller tires she is laying on the ground.




    Did some little fixes in 2010: replaced faulty resister wire with a resister coil, replaced the mismatched head lamps, little bullshit, etc.

    Next up is tackling the body work... and there is alot of it. I've gotten quotes from a few shops. Weighing my options now...Shit is not gonna be cheap. I'll likely have to roll around in primer for a year or two to save up for the paint. Here's a couple of the scary shots.




    Oh, and it turns out the caddy isn't as "original" as I though. It appears the car was mildly restored in the 80's. All of the rust and patina is from poor storage and rough use. I now have no reservations about modifying the car to my desires.

    Shave everything, custom grill, etc. Here's a photochop of where I'm headed. It's going to take some time for sure. But, I'm in little rush.



    Thanks again to all on this board. You've inspired me.
    Last edited by Brian Morris; 06-03-2014 at 08:01 AM.

  2. #2
    Boulevard Bomber

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    Totally stoked that you started a build thread Brian, this year Caddy is hands down the most stylish. She looked good to begin with, and sits even nicer now, but judging by your plans and photochop she's going to look clean as fuck.

    Best of luck
    The coyote of the desert likes to eat the heart of the young and the blood drips down to his children for breakfast, lunch and dinner and only the ribs will be broken.

  3. #3
    ♠ LBCC Chicagoland ♠

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    Thanks Meser. Much appreciated.

  4. #4
    Boulevard Bomber

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    Looks great so far. Im stoked to see more progress on it.

  5. #5
    ♠ LBCC High Desert ♠

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    Very nice Brian thanks for posting that up. Detailed build threads like yours really give an insight into the man behind the car ... I feel like I know you better now than before, after reading this. The photoshop looks great man, godspeed getting the car there, and I hope to meet you sometime in the not-too-distant future ...

    Cheers,

    J.
    1969 Mercury Montego MX -- ¡Cállate la boca!
    Roach Motel II -- 1968 Fairlane 500 Wagon

    "Two on the street is worth more than 20 on the board." -- 64sled

  6. #6
    Casual Cruiser

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    When I saw the photochops on that thread, I was wowed by your Caddy, but it has a great story behind it too. Thanks for posting up a build thread, best of luck on the project, can't wait to watch the progress.

  7. #7
    Harvey's Front Row

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    You have a very pretty car Brian. I'm sure once you get underneath that pretty blue paint you're gonna find some demons here and there.... but you're gonna move forward and fix those rusted out panels/sections and you'll be cruisin' in style now that all the mechanicals and suspension items are complete. She will be very smooth... love your plans.
    The only thing on my mind is how good she's running. Labels are for those in need of recognition. - Diém

  8. #8
    Harvey's Front Row

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    OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO,oooooooOOOOOOoooooooooo, Damn dude that is one bad Caddy! I have a 61 I'm In the process of makin bad! I also am runnin Stars! I'm also paintin mine just like your photo shopped pic! lol Cant wait ta see more! Need ta get ta work on mine! I can help ya out with some rust free AZ parts, Lotsa 61-62 Caddy shit out here! PS Sumit has new Star caps for $7 ea.
    Last edited by Liberace; 01-11-2011 at 09:49 PM.

  9. #9
    Boulevard Bomber

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    Looks gorgeous, loving the fade

  10. #10
    Casual Cruiser

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    Cool Ride !
    I Love 60ies Caddys !
    if you can't fix it with an hammer ,you got an electric problem

  11. #11
    Harvey's Front Row

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    Nice to see a thread here. I have to admit I was super stoked to see it on 30's the night you posted it. That alone put the car in a better place. It's going to be fun watching it transform.

  12. #12
    Harvey's Front Row

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chopped63 View Post
    Nice to see a thread here. I have to admit I was super stoked to see it on 30's the night you posted it. That alone put the car in a better place. It's going to be fun watching it transform.
    x2.
    30s are dope!
    Craig, thanx for the pointer on the caps!
    Sent from my ouiji board with black magic powers

    - I Bomb Mes3 -

  13. #13
    Boulevard Bomber

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    Good story. The car looks like she's headed towards total greatness. BTW... that photochop is dope. I also like them lines. Good stuff.
    ___________________________________________
    I like old Schwinns , 80s BMX, and Gummi worms 

  14. #14
    ♠ LBCC East ♠

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    Good stuff, Brian. Great to see cars that are driven as they evolve.

  15. #15
    ♠ LBCC High Desert ♠

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    I love that Cad Brian. Can't wait to see more! Good luck

  16. #16
    Boulevard Bomber

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    Kool car man......LOVEIN IT.
    I love LR Kustoms RatRods and Wagons.

  17. #17
    ♠ Chicago Chapter ♠

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    Nice! Good read, can't wait to see that photoshop come to life, It seems we have some similarities in our life stories, see ya Saturday!
    Fuckin a Right!

  18. #18
    ♠ LBCC Resident Therapist ♠

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    Fuck, dude. I already really liked your Caddy. Now I know I love it. Yes, she and I have crossed that plane.

    Thanks for the backstory and insight into your process... looking forward to meeting you the next time I'm in Detroit with my wife's family for waaaay too long and just have to get the fuck out of there... probably the holidays next year, as long as I don't kill myself in that white stuff you guys have on the D to Chi-Town drive.
    "There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments, and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance - that principle is contempt prior to investigation." -Herbert Spencer

    "You have enemies? Good. That means you stood up for something, sometime in your life." -Winston Churchill

  19. #19
    ♠ LBCC High Priest ♠

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    Glad this thread is here. It should be a fun one to follow.
    Tradition didn't end in 1964

  20. #20
    Harvey's Front Row

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    I think your photoshop is perfect. If you get anything close to it, you'll have a winner. Although, your car is already a winner in my book. It'll be cool to see it progress.
    "Your car is so low, Bill Hines has to duck to get in." - Trent Sherrill

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