The "NotRod" 6spd DGGM '94 Roadmaster Wagon Refurbishment Album

Discussion in 'General Station Wagon Discussions' started by 81X11, Dec 5, 2018.

  1. 81X11

    81X11 Well-Known Member

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    1994 Roadmaster 6spd Manual Wagon Refurbishment - So I'm about to do a light cosmetic and mechanical refurbishment on the somewhat-famous "NotRod" owned for years by Tim when he lived in Pennsylvania. This car is well-known in the Impala SS and Longroof/Whale-Wagon communities. Tim's love, work and attention to detail on this car are well-documented, and the car was part of numerous Wagonfests and car meets and events over the years. Tim recently sold the car to a good friend of mine out in the Texas Hill Country, and I picked it up this past "Black Friday" to begin a refurbishment process.

    Here is a quick list of mods and upgrades the car already has:

    1994 Buick Roadmaster Estate Wagon - Dark-Grey-Green-Metallic "DGGM" Woody Wagon

    - T56 manual 6-spd transmission with interior matched Blazer console

    - 1993 Camaro Z28 speedometer cluster mod

    - Pontiac Bonneville leather seats, front and rear

    - Impala SS front/Ford Panther rear sway bars

    - Vogtland front springs

    - EURO headlights/Cornering lamps

    - Ridler 695 wheels with Riken Raptor tires

    - K&N CAI Intake

    - Bilstien HD shocks

    - Airlift 1000 bags with custom controller and pressure gauge built into the left/rear cargo area storage pocket (very cool!)

    - 4.56:1 rear gearing

    - Rear Disc Brake conversion

    - Chevy SSR 4.5" alum driveshaft

    - Impala SS Hood (no hood ornament hole)

    - Gran Sport body trim

    - Body-color painted grille with no Buick lettering

    - Polished bright exterior woodgrain outline trim

    - LT1 engine bored to 355/227 Crane cam/ported alum heads/Comp cams 1.5 RR/Corvette starter/beehives/Tri-Y headers without CATS.
    - More mods throughout....

    On picking the car up in the Texas Hill Country we drove from Fredericksburg to Kerrville, then down to San Antonio and back to Austin, so I was able to give the car a real 200+-mile shakedown run. The car is a beast, starts with a ROAR, and it has power EVERYWHERE. I can best describe the driving experience as "manly". The clutch is HEAVY, the shifter is SOLID and requires a firm hand to row, but in a great mechanical way that reminds you of how manuals are MEANT to feel. The exhaust system is LOUD and the car sounds amazing and flat ANGRY. We got stuck in rush-hour traffic in downtown San Antonio for nearly and hour, and my clutch leg got a workout it hasn't had in years...that leg was sore the next day, ha! The steering is straight and power assist is very firm, but has some on-center play that I believe is age-related and in the box. All the power windows work, locks work, keyless-entry works, even the original Delco CD player works and sounds good. The A/C blows very cold and the cruise-control held speed fine on the drive home.

    This car was always well loved and enjoyed, but it was also well-used by Tim as both a daily-use, business-road trip, and towing vehicle. The car has lived through many harsh Pennsylvania and Northeast winters, and while it's still solid, it's a bit rough around the edges...something I plan to address. The body also has over 300K miles on it, but again all the modifications and updates don't have that mileage on them! The first repair I did was re-mounting and re-aligning the passenger-side exhaust, which had been knocked back about an inch and was off three hangers (shipping issues possibly?). It was re-mounted and welded, and while in the air I was happy to see the frame is in GREAT shape and general underbody of the car are still VERY solid! It has some light crust on the floorpans and on the mounts for the fuel tank straps, but I plan to wire-brush and rust-reform those. The only real rot on the car is the spare tire well (common) and some light rust around the screw holes where Tim had installed mud flaps. All that will be repaired.

    The car was a show car, but now has the usual age-related cosmetic issues and some general glitches are expected of a well-used Roadmaster. The wagon still has great bones, and it demands to be brought back to it's full former glory. I'm planning to spend the next few months of weekends addressing most of these common Roadmaster repairs. I love these cars and know them well, and really am looking forward to getting my hands dirty on this wagon!

    Here is the public Facebook Album I've started on the somewhat-famous "NotRod" 6spd DGGM '94 Roadmaster Wagon that I will be refurbishing over the next few months here in Austin. Will update as the repairs progress! https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10217641937910937&type=3

    11/24/18 - Not cleaned or detailed in any way yet. Shakedown Run. My nephew Hunter totally fell in love with the car, as seen here.
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    11/24/18 - Shakedown Run.
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  2. 81X11

    81X11 Well-Known Member

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    12/5/2018 - Have had family/holiday obligations but am tinkering as I can!

    Hand-washed the exterior and cleaned the interior really well. Still not waxed or detailed inside, but much cleaner. Next project will be TOTALLY cleaning the engine compartment, then come waxing and such, but still it cleaned up well!

    I also installed the replacement under-taillight trim on the driver's-side, using the "Christmas-Tree" clips to repair the broken stock clips, a trick I learned on this forum. Works great!
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    In addition, when going through my parts-stash I found the black flash-mount roof rack rail that's I'd removed from my '92 Olds wagon for a bright polished rail. Added the black rack to the NotR0d and it looks like it was born here! Rack no-longer looks "naked".
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    This past weekend my oldest son and I took my "Basic-White" wagon and the NotRod to two local good car-meets, and the wagons were a big hit! Links to those albums below the pics if you care to look.
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    Brown Santa Car Meet: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10217685015787857&type=3
    Freddy's Car Meet: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10217685125710605&type=3

    Lastly we too the "long-way-home" from the last car meet and stopped at Lake Pflugerville. Was a GORGEOUS day and we has such fun running the back roads with the two wagons together.
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    More updates as the come!

    -Texas Mike
     
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  3. OrthmannJ

    OrthmannJ Hillbilly Deluxe

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    Dang Mike, that's cool. You just got to scratch that itch huh?
    You keep referring to Tim, the previous owner of the "NotRod" forgive my ignorance, but Tim who?

    Looks like you all had a great time cruising the wagons. I'm not going to lie, kinda jealous that the weather is so nice where you live. It's definitely not "cool car cruising" weather where I live.
     
  4. 81X11

    81X11 Well-Known Member

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    Tim Swink is well-known in GM "Whale-Wagon" circles. He owned this car for YEARS and did all the mods to it. He lived in Harrisburg PA but recently retired to North Carolina and sold the 6spd wagon as part of the lifechange. It came down here to Texas just this past summer.
     
  5. OrthmannJ

    OrthmannJ Hillbilly Deluxe

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    I gotcha. Cool. :cool:

    When you were saying "Tim" I was wondering...

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  6. 81X11

    81X11 Well-Known Member

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    SO it's been a long time since I've updated this, and figured I better follow-up. Frankly between the Holidays, family obligations, and really POOR weather here in Texas much of this winter, the 6spd wagon had been just sitting under my carport. I had a car-friend come down from Minnesota over the week between Christmas and New Years, and my son and I met him down in Austin in both the green and white wagon and did a tour of Austin, hit the Top Notch, and had a good time, but on the way back to the suburbs the 6spd wagon developed a loud rattle under it that I thought was a blown muffler, and I'd parked it since.
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    So yesterday, Sunday 2/17/19, it was TIME for me to give the 6spd wagon some love. Thought it had a blown muffler, but turned out to be a bad heat shield. Good deal. SO opened the hood and decided it was time to clean the Pennsylvania off of it, and to swap the hush-pad. Here are the BEFORE pics.
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    Rotten hood hush-pad removed. Cleaning up under here...everywhere.
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    Was a productive afternoon. New hood hush-pad installed, engine compartment cleaned and de-greased, then washed the entire car and took a short drive to make sure the underhood was totally dry. Exhaust rattle gone, underhood looks a lot better.
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    2/18/19 - Drove this green hotrod to the office today. Getting some estimates for paintwork this week.
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    Car is a beast!

    -Texas Mike
     
  7. OrthmannJ

    OrthmannJ Hillbilly Deluxe

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    Looking Good Mike.
    What is the paint work that needs to be done?
     
  8. 81X11

    81X11 Well-Known Member

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    This was a Pennsylvania car and the spare tire well has a rust spot. Also the car was painted some years back and they blended the paint on the roof, and you can see the blend line now. We'll see!
     
  9. OrthmannJ

    OrthmannJ Hillbilly Deluxe

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    That's how it goes sometimes. Good luck!
     
  10. 81X11

    81X11 Well-Known Member

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    2/18/19 - Small victory, got the Blazer shifter boot to stop popping out of the console in 5th and Reverse. Hint...involved a drill and a screw. Not fancy, but hidden and it works!! Redneck Engineering Expert Level!
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  11. OrthmannJ

    OrthmannJ Hillbilly Deluxe

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    Redneck ingenuity is usually the best ingenuity.
     
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  12. Silvertwinkiehobo

    Silvertwinkiehobo "Nothing is foolproof as fools are ingenious."

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    I like that shade of green; are you looking to keep that color? Also, I noticed the spark plug looms that put the wires above the exhaust manifolds rather than under them; is that a complete kit you can buy? If so, it'd make working on Opti-Spark a bit easier.
     
  13. 81X11

    81X11 Well-Known Member

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    I love Dark-Grey-Green-Metallic too. Great color, and car will be staying that color. As for the wires, that car is a total custom just. Motor is not-near stock, but will look for a name on the wiring.
     
  14. Silvertwinkiehobo

    Silvertwinkiehobo "Nothing is foolproof as fools are ingenious."

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    Other than the cover on the TPI's upper plenum, the engine looks great. I just have an aversion to engine covers.
     
  15. OrthmannJ

    OrthmannJ Hillbilly Deluxe

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    You will have to pardon my ignorance, but what does the DGGM stand for?
     

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