I did a quick once-over on the interior with some Simple Green, and it looks like it should be restoreable. The lower seat inserts (the green pleated part) was already re-done once in the past on the front, but now both fronts and the rear lowers will need re-done. All of the white vinyl appears to be in decent shape. There are a few nicks in the piston covers and a hole on the back of the drivers seat too… but, for a budget job those could be left alone. The door panels are not so hot, and pretty expensive to replace so I may try to doctor up the lower portions just to make it runnable for the time being. I’ve already got a replacement glove box pad that isn’t cracked, so the dash will be an easy job. The original carpet is missing, but the padding is there. As mentioned in the earlier post about SMS Auto Fabrics, replacement carpet and all necessary vinyls, plus door panels are available. Visible on the floor is the replacement panel for under the dash where there is an aftermarket tachometer installed.
I bought a 61 lesabre for my stepson a few months ago and we’re slowly restoring it. It’s really in pretty good shape already but needs a few mechanical and body things. I’m very much a novice (as you can tell by my upcoming question) but enjoy what we’re doing with the car and the educational aspect of restoration. So first do you know of a QUALITY run website that’s good for parts? Next, do you think it wise to use a amateur upholsterer if I have the old stuff to use as patterns? And last–and here’s my experience level showing–to take off the rear door panel to repair the glass mechanism, I can’t find a way to remove the glass (not power) crank handle. All I can see is what looks like a torx type of bolt between the metal door and the glass that would release the handle. I can’t get to it either through the top of the door panel or after swiveling the panel and reaching up through the hole in the door. Is there a factory special tool for that? Thanks Dave–Your site is great! Bob
Bob, there are a few websites that sell Buick parts. There is http://buickfarm.com, http://www.oldbuickparts.com, and I think there may be a few others. But, are they “Quality” sites? By today’s website standards, no, they are quite archaic. We are dealing with obscure cars here, not common Chevy’s or Fords so we get what we get!
The trunk material in my car are a disaster, I took the floor mat out, it came in several chunks but I saved it for making patterns in the future. Since your Buick is a ’61, the patterns won’t be the same anyway. You’ll have to find another ’61 or ’62 Buick to copy. Maybe the same up to ’64, but you’ll have to research that to find out for sure.
The door handle cranks have a clip that takes a special tool to remove. You can get the tool at your local auto parts store.