Here's my 1962 Olds Dynamic 88 Fiesta Station Wagon

Discussion in 'The Welcome Wagon' started by starfireelvis, Jan 22, 2012.

  1. starfireelvis

    starfireelvis New Member

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    That is putting it mildly; the '61-'64 full-size Oldsmobiles (as well as some, not all Pontiacs of the same era) had the Slim-Jim (and a variant of this was also in the '61-'63 F-85 Cutlass compacts). Will spare you the details, other than to say that BOTH of the ones for the Starfire and the Wagon were in need of rebuilding last year. I took the two up to someone recommended by a knowledgeable old car guy, and even though he managed to find a third one at a junkyard, I ended up taking home all three transmissions in eight boxes!! Talk about a sick feeling.

    Thankfully, my mechanic knew of an old retired guy who had worked on Slim-Jims, and out of the three transmissions, he was able to make two good ones out of the three that look and perform as brand-new. A miracle worker for sure! One is in the wagon now, the other I have as a spare (I had to get another Slim-Jim from a friend in Wisconsin that had been rebuilt perhaps 15-20 years ago, and was sitting on his shelf; thankfully the old guy serviced that one, too, and had it ready for my Starfire to go to Fall Hershey last year!!)

    Lesson learned: if the transmission shop has never worked on a Slim-Jim, run for the hills until you find someone who has!
     
  2. MotoMike

    MotoMike Well-Known Member

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    I've heard this before about the slim jims, glad you have yours all sorted out. I remember ours pooped out on us around 50k miles.
     
  3. the Rev

    the Rev senior junior Charter Member

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    that is one expensaroony back bumper!!!!

    a pal of mine has to 64's (2dr/ht's)....its always been fun trying to find parts:evilsmile:

    nice beasts Mike....:Welcome:
     
  4. starfireelvis

    starfireelvis New Member

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    Well, it can be, but I am glad to report that, after over four years, I FINALLY did locate a solid rear bumper for a '62 Olds full-size wagon that was shipped to me from Fresno, California. The upper bumper was pretty bashed up, but luckily my friend Paul spotted one in one of the Fall Hershey swap meet fields that was refurbished, re-chromed, and good as new.

    I'm going to have the lower bumper, which is very solid, rechromed along with the skegs; the two pieces on each side of the license plate are very nice, and as a bonus, the bumper from the west coast had the extra "steps" on the inside of the skeg fins, for access to a roof rack I would suppose (which I don't have, nor do I have the third rear-facing seat). Still, those cleaned up really nice as well.

    I also have some NOS rocker panels that I need to have welded in, and have an NOS passenger side rear quarter I picked up. I've put in NOS taillight lenses on each side, and NOS back-up light lenses as well, which were tougher to find than the taillights. I've found for one side (can't remember which one right now) a complete taillight/back-up light chrome housing (not the assembly, which I don't need, anyways), and have a very nice rear trim piece that goes across the tailgate, so I am fixing my affectionately referred to "White Whale" as we go along. Plan on taking it to Spring Carlisle (PA) at the end of April, and vending from the tailgate!
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2012
  5. starfireelvis

    starfireelvis New Member

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    Keep remembering things I've done; nice thing here is that a lot of the stuff for the wagon is interchangeable with my '62 Starfire, which is my show car, so I've been able to do things like put NOS parking lamps on the Starfire, and take the ones that were on there (which were nice to begin with) on the wagon, replacing the ones originally on there that was not as nice.

    I did find a newer front upper and lower bumper for the wagon, which are both nicer than what was on there to begin with. I have also had my buddy "Impala Jim" Fuller help me out with some detailing, as well as another friend of mine who is into wagons ('91-'92 Olds Custom Cruisers), Dave Lowe.

    Here are some pics from right after I bought the wagon, of Jim painting valve covers and detailing the generator (the Starfire has an alternator, as it is so equipped with an A/C car built after 2/28/62). Also, Dave's here lending a hand while at Jim's garage, which thankfully is heated; as I recall, this particular weekend it was about zero outside!

    Finally, I also have a shot of me putting in on of those NOS taillight lenses, and me outside my mechanic's place after he made the car roadworthy the first time around, before the engine blew 2,200 miles later.
     

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  6. the Rev

    the Rev senior junior Charter Member

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    sounds like youve had some great luck finding pieces (y)

    NOS lenses???....man....i woulda peed myself a bit i think:D
     
  7. starfireelvis

    starfireelvis New Member

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    Well, keep in mind I've had the wagon for about 4 1/2 years, so it's not like it all happened at once! I did have some early luck with the NOS panels, and within about 2 months I had located a left and then a right NOS taillight lens on eBay in two separate auctions, and have seen some since, so they're not impossible. The back-up lenses were tougher, took about a year to find one then the other. If I remember correctly, the left and right lenses for the taillights were specific to each side, but the back-up lenses were interchangeable.

    Just gotta keep your nose close to the ground, and know where to look. If it weren't for the internet, any folks like us who want something a little bit different would have to hunt until the end of time to find some of this stuff!
     
  8. Krash Kadillak

    Krash Kadillak Well-Known Member

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    My first car in '69 was a '63 Olds F-85 Cutlass with the Hydramatic, and to this day it's the thing I remember most about that vehicle - the smoothness of the transmission. Gave the engine a different sound, too.
     
  9. MotoMike

    MotoMike Well-Known Member

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    I noticed the alternator/generator difference in the 2 62 cars and wondered about that. A mid year change the factory made, cool.
     
  10. jmt455

    jmt455 Well-Known Member

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    Love that shot of the Starfire next to the Olds HQ in Lansing.:2_thumbs_up_-_anima:clap:
    Those are very cool cars...

    Oh, and the wagon is awesome, too.
    (forgot where I was for a minute there...:29:)
     
  11. snooterbuckets

    snooterbuckets New Member

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    Nice pair of Olds', Starfire. I always thought that would be neat to have a sedan and wagon model of the same year. Thanks for all the pictures; I love 'em.
    I've noticed the wheel covers on your 2dr on other '62's and wondered how in the world you'd paint those color inserts. It would have to take an unbelievable amount of taping off, no?
     
  12. starfireelvis

    starfireelvis New Member

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    Here's a little secret I picked up on. One of the fellows I mentioned earlier (and you saw him "in action" in a couple of pics), is my buddy Impala Jim, who has Chevrolet 283 V-8s in both his '60 convertible and '65 SS coupe.

    Well, that Chevy engine orange is the perfect match to paint the "rocket" in the center of both the standard (dog dish/poverty/whatever you call 'em!) hubcaps like on the wagon, or that rocket on the deluxe hubcaps as seen on the Starfire. Those spinner caps, ironically enough are referred to as "Fiesta" hubcaps--the three-bar spinners that first appeared on the high-end '53 Olds Fiesta convertible, not to be confused with the Olds full-size wagons from 1957-64. You can tape off the cap for either one, but if you just get some thinner and precise use of a shop towel or light cloth, and one finger, you can wipe off any excess pretty easily. Jim is a master at that!

    As for the maroon metallic inserts on the Starfire caps (Olds called that "Garnet Mist"), they originally were put on either at the factory, or by the dealer, with use of a template that fit over the cap, and the paint was sprayed on. A fellow in New Jersey had one of his younger computer-guru relatives come up with a program that perfectly diagrammed the dimensions of each of the inserts, and had them printed up on heavy-duty adhesive paper, that you can peel off an apply individually. Once you get the hang of it, it wasn't too bad--I put them on over the course of about three hours on all four hubcaps about 7-8 years ago, and they have been perfect ever since!
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2012
  13. Olds Weighty Eight

    Olds Weighty Eight New Member

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    Very cool Rockets! I've never seen one of those wagons. Very unique. :thumbs2:
     
  14. starfireelvis

    starfireelvis New Member

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    OK, a few more random pics for your viewing pleasure!
     

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  15. starfireelvis

    starfireelvis New Member

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    Just some others I had handy...

    The picture of the '58 Olds Super 88 Fiesta (Tom Bogo) and the '91 Olds Custom Cruiser (Dave Lowe) was taken at a restaurant just outside Lansing, Michigan, as we were on our way back from the Oldsmobile Homecoming a few years back. Great Olds show, 500 cars, lots of Fiestas, Vista Cruisers, clamshells, and later model wagons as well can always be seen...
     

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