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April 2008 Feature Car


It was a no brainer for me. As soon as I saw a photo of John Nelson's 1968 Beaumont Wagon, I knew this was going to be our April feature car. I'm sure you will all be just as impressed, not only by the finished product, but the blood sweat and tears it took to bring this wagon to it's current state. Here's the story in Johns words:

 "I began my love of old cars back when I was 18 years old.My first car was my Grandmothers 67 Malibu,which of course I fixed up and spent every last nickel of my earning teenage years on.Not to mention that I drove the car everywhere,rain or shine.I sold that car in 1985 when I bought my very first new vehicle and regretted it ever since.
Well as fate would have it-I couldn't live without a muscle car so I bought a 66 Beaumont Custom Convertible in 1987 and fell in love with Beaumonts.
I aquired another Beaumont a few years later,a 68 SD 396 Convertible and the corral hasn't stop filling up since then.I always wanted to find a Beaumont Station Wagon,although I can honestly say in all my years of cruising around I had never ever seen one.So the hunt began for a 68 Beaumont Wagon.Although my excursions through many buy and sell magazines,old car traders,scrapyards etc..turned up with nothing-nadda,zilch! I soon began to realize that this wasn't going to be an easy task so I of course asked all my car buddies to keep an eye out as well.I had all but given up hope when 9 years ago I got a call from Mr. Carl Stevenson( a friend of mine-GM freak to say the least),with a sighting.He had been on a family vacation in Alberta and he had visited the infamous Marshall's Salvage in Lethbridge,and said he found a 68 Beaumont Station Wagon in a stack of cars,one car on its roof and two underneath it.The car was obviously headed to the shredder.Carl Stevenson had told me it looked very solid,but it had hundreds of small dents.Well I called Marshall's and got the front desk,inquired about the car,but was told we only sell parts,not cars.I asked to speak to the owner,who came on the phone,and actually laughed when I told him I wanted the whole car.We set the price and the car was sold to me over the phone with a Visa card.Of course I now needed to find a way to get it home-hadn't even seen the car yet! What to do? I called the Beaumont club out in Western Canada,and they put me on to a guy named Greg Schinkle( he was incredibly kind and helpful to someone he hadn't ever met).I called Greg and he actually offered to go and pick the car up for me and keep it at his place until I could either go get it or arrange to have it picked up!! He took pictures for me and sent them off from  disposable camera.I honestly couldn't get to the one hour photo shop fast enough,arrived back exactly one hour later,only to find that the film wasn't finished yet.I think I actually ground my teeth down to half their original size I was so excited to see the pics.When I did finally see them my heart kinda sank,but also remained excited at the thought of actually one day seeing it come back to life.
wagon-01.jpg
wagon.jpg
wagonrear.jpg
wagoninterior.jpg
It needed some front end stuff to make it a roller so it needed to be loaded with a fork lift at the yard and dropped onto the trailer.I knew what I needed to make it a roller again,so I needed a forklift to load it at Greg's end and unload it at my end.Carl again came to the rescue,and stated to give the trucking company by his workplace a call in Rosenort ,Manitoba-they had a truck out that way and a forklift to take it off-perfect.
The wagon was shipped via truck to Rosenort where I was anxiously driving to see it for real two days later.The car arrived before I got there,and there were a few people around it when I arrived.Well the ribbing I took when I walked up was enough to deter anyone.What are you going to do with that piece of crap? I replied with" I am going to fix it",which was met with alot of loud laughter.Got the car loaded and was on my way home to get it off the trailer and into my driveway.I arrived home only to be met by one of my neighbors who was showing her discontent as I drove up-she also asked what I was going to do with that piece of crap!!
bringingwagonhom.jpg
I had the car rolling in less than an hour.Called a couple buddies to help roll it off,who also stated that I was a complete wipeout for trying to fix the wagon.The day was quite a memorable one.Everyone cut down the car and the thought of ever fixing it-except my wife who had listened to my buddies rib me to no end.After they all left she walked outside and said not to worry "I am sure you will prove them all wrong".
Well 5 1/2 years later and an absolutely ridiculous amount of time and money-the car was complete.Now let me explain that I have option disease,which I again caught from Carl Stevenson.This is what the wagon has for factory options;Power Windows,Power electric locks,Power tailgate window,Power drivers side Bucket seat,Passenger Reclining Bucket seat,Headrests,Console,AM/FM,Factory A/C,Tachometer,Factory Guages,Reverb,Front and rear Factory Speaker Grills,Wagon rear defrost,Soft Ray Glass,Roof Rack,Front Bumper Guards,Power Disc Brakes,12 Bolt Positraction Rear w 373 Gears,Window Bright Trim,Hidden Wipers,Windshield Antenna,Vigilite Light Monitoring System,Tilt Steering,Cushion Grip Steering Wheel,Remote Drivers Mirror,Maplight Mirror,Interior Lighting Group,Front and rear sway bar,3 turn fast ratio steering box.All chrome was rechromed to absolute show quality,all stainless was polished to a mirror finish.Complete body off restoration.Wheels are 17" Cragar ss,with Nitto tires( Big Chubbies in Back).Motor is a 383 Stroker motor built by none other than Mr. Gary Anderson.Completely rebuilt suspension with polyurethane bushings.Transmission is a custom built 700R4.
Wagon-Shot2.jpg
Let me say this-the car was an absolute challenge to build,but it is fast,stops on a dime,and handles like a new Camaro.It is truly one of a kind-absolutely no dissapointments to anyone who has seen it.Body and Paint were done by Darrell Overwater of Point Douglas Auto Body in Winnipeg-he did an absolutely beautiful job.And to all who doubted the car from day one,some can't believe that it is the same car,some are full of compliments,most of them can't believe I built it.My wife loves the car and supports all of my many projects,which without her comments that day it came home may never have even started.
 
I will say this though...............I Silenced Them All"

JohnNelson-Shot_1Custom.jpg

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A Poncho Legend!

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AwwTodd, now you spoiled the surprise!!!!

To those who have never seen this car in person, (especially before), all I want to say is you are missing out!



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1966 Strato Chief 2 door sedan 283 "survivor"


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What a great story John, very enjoyable reading. I have no words to describe your car.....eyepopping.gif.....jawdrop.gif

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Ray White, Toronto ON

1973 LeMans 454 "Astro-Jet"

Built March 9, 1973 - Oshawa ON

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nice wagon. i'm kinda partial to beaumonts wagon. having grownup driving one. now hotrodding one

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sTevE

55 GMC, 53 Pontiac Sedan Delivery (for sale), 70 Pontiac 2+2 rag



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73SC wrote:

What a great story John, very enjoyable reading. I have no words to describe your car.....eyepopping.gif.....jawdrop.gif



You should see it in real life! Of course, he spent my life savings (and some of the savings I haven't even saved yet) plus a bazillion hours of work getting it there. It should look that good!!!

 



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1966 Strato Chief 2 door sedan 283 "survivor"


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Absolutely beautiful car. Well done, and well desrved as a feature car.

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wow!  weirdface congrats on your hard work! nice! biggrin

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I LOVE WAGONS!!!!!

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1960 Pontiac Strato Chief Safari
1960 Laurentian Safari 
1960 Laurentian 4door(scrapped)
2001 Grand Am 
2002 Hyundai Accent(SOLD)
1968 Grand Parisienne Scrapped and SOLD

 

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Congrats, you saved something that would have most likely enjoyed it's next life as a chinese manufactured lawn chair, into a stunning piece of rolling art. 

Hats off for thinking/dreaming/building, "out of the box".

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Poncho Master!

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It's a beauty John. Thanks for sharing the story to go along with the pics. At least with this group your painstaking work is understood and appreciated.

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A Poncho Legend!

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64 Canso wrote:

Congrats, you saved something that would have most likely enjoyed it's next life as a chinese manufactured lawn chair, into a stunning piece of rolling art.

Hats off for thinking/dreaming/building, "out of the box".



laughing.gif I never thought of it that way. Good point. For all we know, we could have bought that car at Walmart in the form of a can opener or something!!!

 



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1966 Strato Chief 2 door sedan 283 "survivor"


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WOW! WOOW! WOOOW!  I LOVE IT! WELL DONE.

Brian

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Great looking car, just needs a 455 pontiac to top it off!

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'74 ventura with a P455. Runs 11.98's in the quarter so far, shooting for low 11's.

1980 chev pickup, 6'' lift and 36'' iroks, 10k winch, soon to have a pontiac 400 under the hood.

See my junk here:

www.putfile.com/biltit


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Just curious now that BILTIT has brough up engines. I see there is a Chevy 383 in this beauty, what did it originally have? Were 396's available in the wagons in 68?

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Ray White, Toronto ON

1973 LeMans 454 "Astro-Jet"

Built March 9, 1973 - Oshawa ON

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Congratulations, you have done a fantastic job !  Your are very fortunate to have such an encouraging  and understanding wife !!

Al

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A Poncho Legend!

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I believe the biggest engine would have been a 327. I'm sure John will answer here if I'm wrong.

I wonder if an L79 wagon would have been a possibility?

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1966 Strato Chief 2 door sedan 283 "survivor"


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How much does a wagon weigh? That seems like a darn small engine for a big car!

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'74 ventura with a P455. Runs 11.98's in the quarter so far, shooting for low 11's.

1980 chev pickup, 6'' lift and 36'' iroks, 10k winch, soon to have a pontiac 400 under the hood.

See my junk here:

www.putfile.com/biltit


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Inspirational!
If somthing so rough can turn out like that, mine should be easy!
I do have a soft spot for those 17" Cragars. Perfectly period.

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67' Grande Parisienne. Ex Ottawa USSR Embassy car, 67- 68.
6977017306_dfca361bfc_m.jpg
 


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BILTIT wrote:

How much does a wagon weigh? That seems like a darn small engine for a big car!



I did a quick search and in '68 the 327 came in three power ratings, 250, 275 and 325, the passenger car 396 which even if it were available was 265 and 325so really not giving away much in HP. Can't find torque. Wagon weighed in around 3,580 lb.

-- Edited by 73SC at 20:27, 2008-04-01

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Ray White, Toronto ON

1973 LeMans 454 "Astro-Jet"

Built March 9, 1973 - Oshawa ON

Tweet me @BigRaySays






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Wow, the same weight as my ventura.

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'74 ventura with a P455. Runs 11.98's in the quarter so far, shooting for low 11's.

1980 chev pickup, 6'' lift and 36'' iroks, 10k winch, soon to have a pontiac 400 under the hood.

See my junk here:

www.putfile.com/biltit


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cdnpont wrote:

Inspirational!
If somthing so rough can turn out like that, mine should be easy!



I don't think John would say THIS one was easy! Although I knew he'd do it, I also have to include myself in the "are you nuts?" column laughing.gif

 



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1966 Strato Chief 2 door sedan 283 "survivor"


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The funny thing was, I was running through the wrecker's the day I first saw that car. I got there about 4:40 or a touch later as I recall, and had to beg them to let me run through because they wanted to close at 5:00. Seems to me I glanced at it as I ran past the car, and then noticed that although it was rough, it looked solid, so I ran back and did about a 45 second assesment on it!

Think how rich he'd be today if only I'd never seen that car there!!!

-- Edited by Carl Stevenson at 23:57, 2008-04-01

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1966 Strato Chief 2 door sedan 283 "survivor"


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Todd

Looks like that Beaumont SD396 wagon is giving you trouble???!!!

It's so fast, it keeps leaving and all we see is the 427 Chevy, er, I mean Pontiac powered Strato Chief!!!

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1966 Strato Chief 2 door sedan 283 "survivor"


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If I undersatnd C1 correctly, everyone needs to refresh their browser to see the new feature car because their computer saves the old web page so it can load quickly, Press the F5 key, that  should fix it. If i'm off base on C1's comment.....never mind.

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Ray White, Toronto ON

1973 LeMans 454 "Astro-Jet"

Built March 9, 1973 - Oshawa ON

Tweet me @BigRaySays






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You are right. That's what's happening. Your browser see's the logo as the same file name as the Strato Chief so by default it pulls the photo out of your history. Doing a refresh will clear it up.
Todd


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1969 Pontiac Laurentian 2 door hardtop **SOLD**
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Canadian Poncho World Headquarters - Prince Edward Island

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