Friday, March 23, 2007

Nurturing the other passions...
AKA taking care of my inner gearhead. Sometimes I just need to switch gears and let another "hobby" (which is another polite way to refer to an obsession that costs a fair amount of money) take over for a bit. Its these other sidebars that make us human and keep us going.
Today was just a gorgeous morning, sun up early, warm and I just had the urge to drive. Not my daily driver but my nice old antique Buick. I pulled of the car cover gave it a quick wash and a polished up the chrome then off I went for for a zip around town and on the freeway to scare some old ladies, small children and the odd dog. Added bonus is I set off a couple of car alarms on some rice rockets as I cruised Old Town Monrovia.
You see, this old car that was bought from my neighbors estate is a wonderful 1972 Buick Centurion "Formal Coupe". The restoration included keeping the "Pasadena Senior Center" sticker in the rear window, stock color, stock everything or at least period correct. Well, I stuck to that plan for the most part. The inner juvenile delinquent ruled and off the GS455 cranking out 330HP are 3" pipes running through flowmasters. NOTHING will ever sound as good as a big block V8 when the four barrel opens up on the freeway. Nothing.
A bit of history for you. The Buick Centurion was marketed as the "bankers hotrod" and mid-range in the Buick line up. It ran for only 3 years (the first oil embargo of 1973 brought an end to it). 1972 there were some 110,000 units sold (of a production run of over a million Buicks that year). Of them only 35,000 were the "Formal Coupe" and very few survive. 1972 there were two 455ci V8's available (that's 7.5Litres to those of you who don't know what cubic inches are anymore). One was the standard 250hp through a single exhaust, the other was the GS (Gran Sport) with 330hp through true dual exhausts. My car has been authenticated and is registered with the national Centurion registry. More of my car with hits testicular ornamentation can be found there too:
Its now back on my driveway waiting for another excuse to head out this afternoon just to blow out the cobwebs...and at 3.50/gal for premium it does a lot of sitting these days.
Enjoy "Da BU"....

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