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Author Topic: 66 DeVille Convertible resto  (Read 14408 times)

Offline Bill Young

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #100 on: June 06, 2017, 10:08:07 AM »
Chuck , not trying to be a jerk , but in the interest of helping you get it right as you are pouring your heart and wallet into this car. In the photo you show looking at the back window of the new conv. top and rear roof area concerning the Wireon strip that goes outside across from left to right on the rear roof bow the Arrowhead stainless clips that fasten with the single phillips head screw are supposed to be positioned farther out and down the side of the bow. Not on top as the trim shop positioned them. Check photos of other 1965 thru 1970 Conv. tops and you will see the difference.
1972 Cadillac Fleetwood Eldorado Convertible in Coronation Red , White top , White seats with Oxblood dash and carpet

Offline Bentley

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #101 on: June 06, 2017, 02:57:30 PM »
Ralph and Chuck,

Thanks for the explanation on colors.
Wes Bentley
CLC # 30183

Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #102 on: June 06, 2017, 05:12:36 PM »
Chuck , not trying to be a jerk , but in the interest of helping you get it right as you are pouring your heart and wallet into this car. In the photo you show looking at the back window of the new conv. top and rear roof area concerning the Wireon strip that goes outside across from left to right on the rear roof bow the Arrowhead stainless clips that fasten with the single phillips head screw are supposed to be positioned farther out and down the side of the bow. Not on top as the trim shop positioned them. Check photos of other 1965 thru 1970 Conv. tops and you will see the difference.

No problem Bill.  I did some research.  First, using Bing and Google, found about 1/2 the cars are around 4 inches or so longer on each side, and the others are the same as mine.  I checked with Electron, major supplier and where my top came from.  They have been recommending to authorized installers for decades to only put the wireon straps around 4.5 to 5 inches from the top seam.  Why...well they had so many problems back in the day with tops ripping in that area. (I'm surprised there was no recall, or maybe there is a service bulletin on it). 

Next, checked with the installer, who has been putting on tops for 30+ years.  He said that he can easily put another one on if I want, and extend down a little further.  However, he warned me that he has seen a ton of tops rip in that area (He said w/o me mentioning Electron call), and did not recommend doing it.

Good info and I didn't even notice.  For now I think I will leave as is, but appreciate any similar resto comments.

Thanks!  Chuck
« Last Edit: June 06, 2017, 06:23:05 PM by Chuck Swanson »
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
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69 Dodge Coronet R/T
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Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #103 on: June 06, 2017, 05:17:48 PM »
Thanks for the pictures!
The only picture I found so far was one from an Ebay listing - it is from a 69 Convertible.
Now that you mentioned it - the picture of the 69 top also seems to have a stitching.

I also asked Electron about this front pad.  They knew what I was talking about but they do not sell.  They do sell the material, and stated that some installers will put these on the Cadillacs.  They could not confirm what was original back then, but they said somewhat popular with the Cadillacs. 

I also asked my installer.  He said he already has the material, but not typical to install.  However, he said he could install one if I wanted.   He mentioned maybe some else may sell already sewn, (Acme??)

Bottom line, if interested, make sure installer has the material in stock, if not add to the Electron order, and they should me able to make this extra piece.

Thanks, Chuck
« Last Edit: June 06, 2017, 05:19:34 PM by Chuck Swanson »
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
67 Chevy II Nova (AACA GN 2016)
69 Dodge Coronet R/T
98 American Tradition 40' DP RV
AACA Lifetime
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Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #104 on: June 07, 2017, 09:56:27 PM »
Whew, rear end suspension finally done.  Big job.  Replaced all 8 control arm bushings.   New Eaton coil springs.  New Gabriel shocks.  Next is cleaning up some of the dust underneath (all painted underneath, just need to clean up the body shop dust/hose spray)  and installing brake and fuel lines.  Was too tired to take anymore pics, but glad how it came out :)
« Last Edit: June 07, 2017, 10:35:02 PM by Chuck Swanson »
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
67 Chevy II Nova (AACA GN 2016)
69 Dodge Coronet R/T
98 American Tradition 40' DP RV
AACA Lifetime
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Offline Ralph Messina CLC 4937

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #105 on: June 07, 2017, 10:03:57 PM »
Chuck,

Looks mighty nice. You'll forget the tired every time you look at the job well done
1966 Fleetwood Brougham-with a new caretaker http://bit.ly/1GCn8I4
1966 Eldorado  http://bit.ly/1OrxLoY
2010 GMC Yukon

Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #106 on: June 16, 2017, 06:31:39 PM »
Thank you Ralph. 

Also appreciate the lead on Industrial Metal Plating.  Got the grill pieces back today and they look great-all anodized.  (I did not send the sides as I have NOS ones).  Now I just need to reassemble :)

Thanks! Chuck

« Last Edit: June 16, 2017, 06:34:01 PM by Chuck Swanson »
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
67 Chevy II Nova (AACA GN 2016)
69 Dodge Coronet R/T
98 American Tradition 40' DP RV
AACA Lifetime
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Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #107 on: June 20, 2017, 05:55:22 PM »
More good stuff :) 
Some wiring I forgot and sent to YNZ.  Not all in pairs as I have some NOS lights.  YNZ can do an entire 66 Caddy now (and 95% of a 65).

Forgot some chrome parts, so those on way. 
Chuck
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
67 Chevy II Nova (AACA GN 2016)
69 Dodge Coronet R/T
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Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #108 on: June 20, 2017, 06:03:22 PM »
Grill 90% reassembled.  Just need to bend more of tabs in back.  What a tedious job.  Took about 3 hours to put back together.  May use some tiny specks of Alum JB weld for stability.  I di not use a jig, or hammer.  Assembled on a thick carpeted floor.  Need to make sure you do not twist the spaces, as the anodizing will spider.  I have 4-5 extra pieces that I tested on first.  Spread with a screwdriver back and forth vs twisting to make space larger, but just enough so still tight. 
The anodizing is unlike chrome as you may have some tiny specs here and there and will not be 100% perfect, like the level of nice show chrome.  Tight to see unless I pointed the tiy specs out, but many are towards the inner back part of grill and you can't see anyway.  I compared to the NOS side pieces, and looks just as good.

Oh, last two pics below are the "before" pics.

Happy with the results!!
Chuck

« Last Edit: June 20, 2017, 06:12:47 PM by Chuck Swanson »
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
67 Chevy II Nova (AACA GN 2016)
69 Dodge Coronet R/T
98 American Tradition 40' DP RV
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Offline DeVille68

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #109 on: July 02, 2017, 02:26:31 PM »
Hi Chuck

Why did you choose Gabriel shocks? What product did you choose? Are these true hydraulic shocks?

I read that today's shocks are too stiff and add unwanted stiffness to the suspension. Back in the day the shocks were pure hydraulic.
I do not know if the original Cadillac shocks had the gas chamber pressure filled. I am guessing not. Every replacement shock I read describes them as gas charged but what I really want to know is that there is no additional pressure inside the gas chamber. Do the adjustable shocks give me some advantage in dialing the stiffness / damping?

Best regards,
Nicolas
1968 Cadillac DeVille Convertible (silver pine green)

Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #110 on: July 02, 2017, 08:12:02 PM »
Hi Chuck

Why did you choose Gabriel shocks? What product did you choose? Are these true hydraulic shocks?

I read that today's shocks are too stiff and add unwanted stiffness to the suspension. Back in the day the shocks were pure hydraulic.
I do not know if the original Cadillac shocks had the gas chamber pressure filled. I am guessing not. Every replacement shock I read describes them as gas charged but what I really want to know is that there is no additional pressure inside the gas chamber. Do the adjustable shocks give me some advantage in dialing the stiffness / damping?

Best regards,
Nicolas
Not sure on the official answer for the original, but these looked the closest.  Of course mine could have been replaced, but they looked original to my low mileage car.  I liked that they were all black too, vs any labels or brighter colors.  Eaton springs sells hydraulic for $300 or so and claim that is what came with the Caddy, but I will gamble first for $40, as I have these in my Nova and they seem fine :)
Chuck
« Last Edit: July 02, 2017, 08:45:44 PM by Chuck Swanson »
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
67 Chevy II Nova (AACA GN 2016)
69 Dodge Coronet R/T
98 American Tradition 40' DP RV
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Offline DeVille68

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #111 on: July 03, 2017, 11:17:55 AM »
Hi Chuck

Yes, I do know this company. I heard they are selling shocks too but they don't give any data about theirs shocks.
You are probably right, choose a simple shock first.
I just found this article: http://www.hotrod.com/articles/high-performance-shock-absorbers/

They mention that the standard two chamber shock (like to ones you have) are usually filled with low pressure gas. And that the single chamber shock are usually filled with high pressure gas to prevent air bubbles to form in the oil.

I might go with a simple twin-chamber single adjustable shock.

Just found a interesting article on the QA1 website. They claim that their twin tube shock does not add "artificial spring" force. http://www.qa1.net/suspension/shock-technology/street-performance-racing-twin-tube-shocks
This shock would maybe well suited for me or any old Caddy.


Do you have a picture of your front convertible top insulation?
« Last Edit: July 03, 2017, 11:31:45 AM by DeVille68 »
1968 Cadillac DeVille Convertible (silver pine green)

Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #112 on: July 03, 2017, 09:03:31 PM »
Posts 86 and 96 in this thread have some pics of underside of top, if that is what you mean.  Thanks for the links!  Chuck
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
67 Chevy II Nova (AACA GN 2016)
69 Dodge Coronet R/T
98 American Tradition 40' DP RV
AACA Lifetime
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Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #113 on: July 03, 2017, 09:20:14 PM »
Painted door armrests today.  I had to go through a couple to get a good passenger side.  Took a while to clean up the old ones.  Used the SEM soap, Plastic prep 38353 and SEM white 15313.  Also painted steering column and column sleeve.  Took a few hours surprisingly as I thought these would be short tasks :)  Scuffed some of the undercarriage and repainted as I did not like some areas.  Blended fine.  Installed all brake clips, gathered all brackets for cleanup to install brake lines this week.  Tapped new holes for the two bolts that broke off holding the emergency brake clips.  Stole emergency brake bracket off my parts car as mine was all bent up. 

Oh, yesterday removed all exhaust manifold bolts.  All came off yesterday very easily!!
« Last Edit: July 03, 2017, 09:22:24 PM by Chuck Swanson »
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
67 Chevy II Nova (AACA GN 2016)
69 Dodge Coronet R/T
98 American Tradition 40' DP RV
AACA Lifetime
Like 65-66 Club: www.facebook.com/6566Cadillac

Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #114 on: September 02, 2017, 09:41:21 PM »
Rear brakes, driver side done-mostly new hardware or restored.  Drums cut.  New emergency brake cables installed (with hardware restored).  New wheel cylinders.   New brake lines halfway installed.  New transmission lines installed.  Engine painted last week, new motor mounts installed.  New transmission mount installed, with restored trans cross mount.  Installed engine and transmission today in car.  Starter restored and painted original black, but will install in car with exhaust manifolds next week.  My son was a big help!!

Oh, I fixed the orange brake spring...now in the lower hole ;)
« Last Edit: September 02, 2017, 09:49:14 PM by Chuck Swanson »
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
67 Chevy II Nova (AACA GN 2016)
69 Dodge Coronet R/T
98 American Tradition 40' DP RV
AACA Lifetime
Like 65-66 Club: www.facebook.com/6566Cadillac

Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #115 on: September 12, 2017, 11:11:33 PM »
Cranking right along.  Progress each day.  Here are a few pics.  Exhaust manifolds installed with repro bolts-torqued to 60.  crossover pipe installed on water pump...yes with 2 o rings ;)  torqued to 20+.  Starter detailed and installed, steering box detailed and installed-bolts re-plated-torqued to 40.  New main ground strap installed.  Rear brakes done, drums turned and detailed.  Yes, I have a few spots to touch up with paint, and some dust and water spots, but it will clean up nice.  A couple minor nicks from engine install, will touch up, but won't see.  I always leave old spark plugs in while painting, but of course they will be replaced ;)  Oh, I used all Felpro gaskets.  Chuck
« Last Edit: September 12, 2017, 11:27:36 PM by Chuck Swanson »
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
67 Chevy II Nova (AACA GN 2016)
69 Dodge Coronet R/T
98 American Tradition 40' DP RV
AACA Lifetime
Like 65-66 Club: www.facebook.com/6566Cadillac

Offline Ralph Messina CLC 4937

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #116 on: September 13, 2017, 08:41:45 AM »
Looks great Chuck.
1966 Fleetwood Brougham-with a new caretaker http://bit.ly/1GCn8I4
1966 Eldorado  http://bit.ly/1OrxLoY
2010 GMC Yukon

Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #117 on: September 17, 2017, 10:14:13 PM »
Thanks Ralph!

New NOS transmission rear seal installed.  Also had to tap new hole for muffler clamp as old one broke off trans shaft.  Driveshaft balanced at shop and also needed two U joints.  Cleaned mating surfaces.  Installed in car.  Chuck
« Last Edit: September 17, 2017, 10:17:22 PM by Chuck Swanson »
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
67 Chevy II Nova (AACA GN 2016)
69 Dodge Coronet R/T
98 American Tradition 40' DP RV
AACA Lifetime
Like 65-66 Club: www.facebook.com/6566Cadillac

Offline Chuck Swanson

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #118 on: November 05, 2017, 03:54:26 PM »
Finally finished installing stainless exhaust.  Thought this would be easy, especially with NOS clamps, lift and tall tripod high lift jack stand, but was a lot of work and took a while (1/2 day).  I found if you pounded in  some pipe with a 2x4 and hammer, was a little easier, as it prevented system from twisting.   The stainless clamps don't always tighten enough to prevent any moving.  If you tighten clamp too much the nut will break off, happened on one.  Just some minor tweaks left on spacing, straightening.  Only an inch from driveshaft, so have to check my other case if that close.  Most of underneath on car done now finally.  Sway bar and a few small items (emer brake cable clamps, Pittman arm).
Chuck
« Last Edit: November 05, 2017, 03:58:52 PM by Chuck Swanson »
66 DeVille Convertible (3)
64 Series 62 (2)
64 2 door
66 Sedan DeVille hardtop
65 Eldorado (vert w/bucket seats)
65 Eldorado Bk/Bk
69 DeVille vert
97 DeVille d'Elegance
67 Chevy II Nova (AACA GN 2016)
69 Dodge Coronet R/T
98 American Tradition 40' DP RV
AACA Lifetime
Like 65-66 Club: www.facebook.com/6566Cadillac

Offline The Tassie Devil(le)

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Re: 66 DeVille Convertible resto
« Reply #119 on: November 05, 2017, 04:45:33 PM »
The alignment past the tailshaft doesn't look right to me.

Bruce. >:D

« Last Edit: November 05, 2017, 05:15:52 PM by Chuck Swanson »
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'70 Ranchero Squire (RHD)
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