Les M

Luceille,,My 71 Boat Tail Buick

In 1987 I moved into a new house in a small town <50 miles from where I was born and raised and one day while mowing my lawn I saw this thundering brown low streak going by ,,we'll just say,,,veeeeery fast !

I had no idea what it even was at first till a few minutes later when it came back through much slower.

OH WOW !!! That's a cool looking car I thought to myself,,and to my surprise it pulled into the yard of the house just down the road 200 yards and 2 houses away and into the garage there. First time I ever saw it. 1987

I managed to finally meet the Grandson of the original owner who had recently passed at 91. After talking to him at the store a couple times and my asking all about that car,,he invited me over to look at it,,

WOW again,,,

and once I saw it up close ,, it was love at first sight and I thought it was one of the most unique cars I'd ever seen and I really loved the body style. To my surprise it didn't have one speck of rust anywhere either, which is amassing for a car in Vermont, but I latter learned his Grandfather purchased it in Florida new in 71 and it had been there till 1981or so when they retired back here to VT. Then it was never driven in the harsh VT winters, always garaged and covered, winterized, ect. and had been sense day 1. The original owner was malicious about this car and even kept the original title, window sticker, and every service record and stich of paperwork related to the car sense it was brand new,,,wicked !!!

Now I've been a Hot Rod guy all my life and have had just about every muscle car know to man,,at least GM's that is. And this is just something I'd never even seen one of before and I'd never had a "Lead Sled" before,, soooo,, of course,, I had to inquire if it might be for sale.

Sadly he said he said he'd never sell it cause it was his Gramps car and he was going to restore it.

I was heartbroken.

Many years passed and I would occasionally see it go by, maybe 2-3 times a year and I loved it more each time I saw it, it does ,after all,,,leave quite a impression coming down the road with the glass pack mufflers rumbling that the Grandson had put on,,those 455 Buick big blocks ,,Really,, sound Sweat.

He would do what,,,shall we say,,, a , "screwdriver registration transfer" !! LOL He'd take it out to stretch her legs 2-3 time a summer and drag me along sometimes adding insult to injury,,,DOWWW!!!! That was all it got used for 15 years or more and had barley 63K original miles on it ,and he still had had plans to keep and restore it, which he never did.

In November of 2010, the Grandson approached me and asked if I may still be interested in it sense his health was failing and he decided not to do anything with it. He knew how much I liked the car and knew by looking at all the trophies I've won with all my other rigs, that I would do it proud and appreciate it.

It still meant a great deal to him being his Gramps car so I was quite pleased he had the confidence to entrust me with something so dear to him and that held so many fond memories for him..

DUHHHHH,,,,OF COURSE I WANT TO BUY IT!!!!! I'm disabled and it took every penny I had in the bank,and could scrounge up,but I still said yes anyhow. $1800 later and just before Christmas,,,SHE WAS FINALLY MINE!!!! After trying to buy it for >12 years I'm now the second titled owner.

I did a complete fluid change on everything, double checked and tweaked everything,,,twice and drove it for 2 summers while stripping out the interior which sadly mice had destroyed and all the time planning what I was going to do. After dreaming and schemed as to what I was going to do to it and starting to repaint the trunk, floors ect, I finally decided just to do some suspension work for better handling and some dress up mods to the motor compartment and leaving it 95% stock. Of course that car just screams,,,triple dump lake pipes and curb feelers, and rumbling glass packs,,so that was given!!!

So that second winter I stripped every bit of chrome and anything removable and stripped the car to bare steel and removed the vinyl top and started on the body work. I decided to paint it the same Bronze color as my hot rod 83 C-10 so I have twins,, 20 years apart. She's done now with no vinyl top and it is going back together as we speak with every piece of rubber and every decal replaced and all inspectors crayon marks as they originally were.

Hydraulics are next and tri spinners on the original wheels with internal engine mods to come later when she starts to get tired. I'll be finishing up the interior I started working on this winter and which is almost complete other than new seat covers. Those are QUITE EXPENSIVE !!! I've dressed up the engine compartment a bit with a period finned oval air cleaner, GS aluminum valve covers, HEI distributor,and ANC lines and repainted everything, and all new reproduction stickers and tags where they belong,, but otherwise it will all stay pretty much all original. Just going to period hot rod it up ,just a little bit with stuff that can be unbolted and put back to 100% original if I wish to,,,,

That's all I'm doing sense it's a rather rare car with only a little >36K of them made and I don't want to permanently change anything. I love it and it's a very unique car, handles great, she gets lots of thumbs up going down the road and has plenty of Garbonzos to make it get from A to Z in comfort !!!! It handles like it's on rails now with the suspension mods and it's like sitting on you're couch, a very comfortable ride with plenty of big block guts. A very sweat ride and my first luxury muscle car.

That's the story of my Lucille and the love affair is still going strong, and my X still refers to it as,,,,,

"the other woman" !! LOL!!!!.

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