Ted's 1965 Oldsmobile Convertible Page
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This '65 442 convertible is one of 1,695 four-speed convertibles built in all plants for the 1965 model year and came to my attention on the Hemmingss classified ad section on the internet in June 2001 almost as a complete accident. I called the owner and he said he wasn't sure if he really wanted to sell it. He sent me some photos by snail mail and I asked that he call me first if he decided to sell it. I figured I would never hear from him again and promptly forgot about it. In September I received a note from him saying that he had decided to sell and wanting to know if I was still interested. Still recovering from the coupe restoration (I swore I would never do another one after that), I considered all aspects for about 30 seconds and contacted him so I could look at the car. It was in pretty solid shape (compared to the coupe) and it didn't take long for us to agree on a price which included transportation by flatbed (the interior was not in the car) to Golden Oldies Performance, Inc. in Wiscasset, Maine where it was restored. The car was assembled in the Fremont plant and purchased new by a woman in California who sold to her brother a year later. He kept it for 30 years until he retired to Oregon in 1995 and sold it to someone in Massachusetts. It had one more owner before I bought it. According to the cowl plate, the car should be Target Red with a white interior and white top. When I bought it, it had about four layers of paint (red, copper, & burgundy), a white top and a black interior. I spoke with the 2nd owner and he was pleased to know I was redoing the car. He sent me some photos and we talked about the history of the car and he gave me the details of the engine rebuild he did in 1987 (0.030" overbore & a mild cam but otherwise stock). He remembered the car (and the photos agreed) as having a red interior. During restoration we have discovered that the car did originally have a white interior, as evidenced by white paint in the rear floor board area, and must have been changed at the dealer to red before it was sold. After looking closely, we determined that someone had dyed the red upholstery black. The car was almost completely rust-free and had near-perfect chrome but had lots of minor dents and scrapes. It was stripped to bare metal, restored and repainted in the original Target Red. The interior stayed black with only the side panels replaced (because of speaker holes). The rear end was wrong for the car (3.08:1 open), had a crack in the housing and signs of an internal explosion, so a complete rebuilt 3.55:1 Anti-Spin rear end was installed. The car was ready for the May 2002 Bonny Eagle Show in Standish, ME. I was able to obtain Massachusetts Antique plate 65442 which is installed on the car. Over the winter of 2004-5, the correct white interior was installed along with a few other minor mechanical items.
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