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Canadian Poncho Superstar!

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June 2016 Feature Car


A few weeks ago there was an ad linked on here for a 1966 Pontiac Strato Chief that appeared to be in excellent condition. I'm happy to report that it now belongs to our veteran member, Carl Stevenson. The car is indeed in excellent condition and it's reassuring to know that it continues to be in good hands. I wonder if Carl will be able to resist the temptation to install a 427? Carl fills us in on the details of this awesome survivor:

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My love affair with 66 full size Pontiacs began in 1975 just after I turned 18. I traded a 65 Acadian Canso SD for a 66 Grande Parisienne, 283, powerglide, triple black, 70,000 miles. I loved that car! Swapped in a 327 TH400 and a 12 bolt shortly after, then a 427 a few years later and drove that car until about 1990 when I just had too many cars. In 1981 I also bought a factory 4 speed 396 twin to that car, which later also got a 427, and also was sold in 1989.  After that I experienced a drought, no 66 Grande Parisiennes until a few years ago, although the desire to own another 66 full size Canadian Pontiac never ever left.

 

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I purchased a 66 GP a few years ago and have been slowly picking away at it but never got far enough on it to drive it. In the past year some of our family's life circumstances have changed and now any major projects are a thing of the past for me. I had sort of entertained the thought that I could still be a part of the hobby if I found a real nice driver that was affordable but never really pursued that option as there was too much else on my plate. The only car I could even consider at this point would be a turn key driver. Then I turned on the computer after being away at our cabin all weekend, opening it up for the season. I'd had plenty of time to think about things, including my involvement in this great hobby. When I looked at the Kijiji ad on Sunday night, May 8th, I really was knocked over by what I saw, a 41,000 mile 66 Strato Chief 2 door sedan and it was for sale in Winnipeg of all places, not far from me.

 

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I made arrangements to go look at is as soon as I could and when I went, took along some cash for a deposit just in case. CP member "Fake68" came along.  You know how these too-good-to-be-true ads always go though, you get there and there's some sort of "story" to go along with the excess baggage the car has. It either turns out rusty, crashed and repaired, butchered, odometer has flipped and is on its second time around, whatever. As much as we looked at this car, we couldn't find any of these issues. Finally I asked if we could go for a ride. I let the seller  drive and it only took about a mile before I knew this car was going to be sold, and it would be mine.

 

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The story of the car, as told to me by the seller was this. It was ordered new by his great uncle who was a mechanic at Mann Motor Products in Prince Albert, Sk.  The great uncle drove the car until 1971 when he developed hip problems.  Because it's "bolt-action", (3-on-the-tree), he was forced to park the car since he couldn't operate the clutch pedal. The car sat in his garage with 36,000 miles on it from 1971 until 2005 when it was purchased by R**** B***** who sold it to me. The car only saw 5000 miles from 2005 until now, and that included a round trip to Prince Albert with it.  I have never seen the car at any shows or cruise nights but the seller stated he had shown it a few times.

 

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The car is a 283 2 barrel, 195 horse with a 3 speed manual column shift. It has a 12 bolt rear with 3.07 gears. The 12 bolt has dual upper control arms so I am quite sure that if I get the GM documents for it, F40 heavy duty suspension will be on the list. Other than that, all I see on the car for options would be a radio and a block heater. When I was looking at the car, I noticed a GM Accessories 4 way flasher unit mounted under the dash. I pulled out the knob and the unit works perfectly. The seller watched me in amazement as I did that and stated that he'd had the car 11 years but had NO idea it was there! It also has a GM Accessories tissue dispenser which to me looks to be the one from US models. I thought all our tissue dispensers had "GM" on them on Canadian models.

 

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I find the colour combination interesting. In the right light, the paint and the interior colour really seem to almost fight each other but I assume it was not special order. I enlisted two paint experts who both confirmed that the paint is entirely original. It has numerous chips and one small ding on the front fender but it would be a crime to paint it!

 

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Plans for the car? One thing for sure, it's getting cleaned up under the hood and that includes installing original spark plug wires! I hesitate to do any painting though, either under the hood or to repair stone chips.  And I dont like the white letter tires, it doesnt say survivor with those on there. Otherwise, drive it sparingly, store it carefully and do my best to preserve what I perceive to be a pretty good "survivor".

 I also want to acknowledge an anonymous CP member who was gracious enough to allow me to pursue the purchase of this car, even though he was interested in it for himself. He saw that ad before I did and had already sent the seller a message inquiring about the car before me. When he found out I was also interested in the car, his words to me were "if you want it, go for it, if not, I'm in!" 

 

 



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Todd
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1969 Pontiac Laurentian 2 door hardtop **SOLD**
1975 Firebird Esprit 350/4speed **SOLD**
Canadian Poncho World Headquarters - Prince Edward Island



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Wow... that was a long wait for this report... I've been biting my tongue the whole time. Nice ride... couldn't believe how tight it was.

Did someone say "FOUR TWO SEVEN" !!!!

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72 Nova SS - Minitubbed
70 Nova SS - #'s L-78 Bench Stick
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MC


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Congrats, Carl.  She's a beaut!  They are only original once.  Love it!!



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image.jpeg

I saw this car weeks ago, it was driven by a Guy that strangely looked like Carl. I thought it must be my imagination.image.jpeg



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pontiax- (canadian pontiac X frame)1964 Parisienne 2dr. hdtop lagoon aqua metallic (Q)

 



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Wow !,  I just love this car. Can hardly wait to see it in person. Good score.

 

Ian



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Wow! congrats carl! love it! smile

2dr post...check

3 pedals...check

12 bolt...check 

BB 'Cdn Pontiac' engine..............wink



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Poncho Master!

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2drpost wrote:

Wow! congrats carl! love it! smile

2dr post...check

3 pedals...check

12 bolt...check 

BB 'Cdn Pontiac' engine..............wink


X 2

... and, BBC = 496 or more ... ???

Dave



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56Pontiac  1956 Pontiac Pathfinder 2dr sedan, 496 - dyno'd 545 hp, stick shift, 4.11 posi - Hot Rod

  1964 Acadian Beaumont SD convert, 283 - factory 195 hp, Powerglide, 3.08 10-bolt - Cruiser

  2012 US-built crew cab truck - Daily Driver and Boat Trailering



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Great score carl! This does solve your dilemma quite neatly and lets face it, Grande Parisiennes are over rated and just plain common compared to this beaut.

 

I love the built in theft proof aspect with the three on the tree as nobody knows how to work those things anymore except for old people. 



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ken from northern Alberta

66 Grande Parisienne 396 with AC (built October 26 1965)

39 Buick (327 with 700 r4)

1960 Sunbeam Alpine

69 Chevy CST pickup
38 Willys pickup electric powered project

51 Airstream time machine portal

1976 GMC 23'  motorhome



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That car is just plane cool!!!

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Barrie Ont.

409 powered 61 Poncho

best time 9.06@ 148 



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Good on you carl! Sometimes you just need something a little different that you don't have to work too hard to have some fun with it. This is that car!

Reminds me very much of the condition of my 67 when I first got it. The trunk always tells the tale.

I say preserve it, but do some easy drivability improvements.



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67' Grande Parisienne. Ex Ottawa USSR Embassy car, 67- 68.
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Canadian Poncho Superstar!

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wow carl good on ya!

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http://canadianponcho.activeboard.com/t51640378/timbuks-first-invader/ http://canadianponcho.activeboard.com/t63146560/timbuks-second-invader/  vancouver island



Poncho Master!

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Good score Carl. I was kinda shocked that you had sold the black GP, but figured there had to be more. And now, we know the rest of the story.
Can't wait to see it in person.


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Stony Mountain, MB

65 Impala SS 2dr HT
65 Impala convert.
59 Impala 2dr HT
67 Acadian Canso 2dr HT

 

 

 



Poncho Master!

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Nice car, great colour combination too. Congratulations.
Brian

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Fake68 wrote:

Wow... that was a long wait for this report... I've been biting my tongue the whole time. Nice ride... couldn't believe how tight it was.

Did someone say "FOUR TWO SEVEN" !!!!


 Ya someone did SAY" FOUR TWO SEVEN"-it was a toothless hillbilly from a Burt Reynolds swamp movie

 



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Nice car Carl !!!


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A Poncho Legend!

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Congratulations!     what a nice find....  

 

I have memories of rides to school in a 66 283 3 speed      

You have my permission to enjoy it as is,  or as time permits, adding a little more horses.....



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Poncho Master!

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I give it 10 thumbs up (if I was all thumbs that is). I love the 66 Pontiacs in general, and I love simple and basic "rustic" cars. The 283 was a super popular engine choice and the 3-speed "standard" is a simple and unusual sight today. The 12-bolt rear makes me think that it was either an F40 suspension car or perhaps even a Z04 H.D. Chassis car (it would also have come with a larger clutch as well if that were the case, plus a h.d. rad which I don't see). The interior appears to be in great shape; redoing it in the authentic material is an expensive proposition.

I just noticed an % on the trim tag, which I believe means that your 66 has shoulder belt anchor points under the headliner.

As much as I would love to see it with a big block under the hood, if it were me the only thing I would changer would be the plug wires and the tires.

 

Congrats on finding a jewel of a survivor Carl. It makes a great ride of the month.



-- Edited by CdnGMfan on Tuesday 31st of May 2016 08:42:00 PM

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67 Chevelle Malibu Sport Coupe, Oshawa-built stocker 250 Powerglide 40,000 mile

Also in garage waiting: stroker 296 cid inline six & built TH350

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Congrats Carl..... I knew it ! 

What a beauty ...



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Big Block B Body nut 



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What a find, super. My kind of car.
Congrats.


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Poncho Master!

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DANO65 wrote:

Good score Carl. I was kinda shocked that you had sold the black GP, but figured there had to be more. And now, we know the rest of the story.
Can't wait to see it in person.


 Same thoughts here.  

What a cool car.  

Great minds think alike,  dont ever paint it,  change the cap and plugwires,  skinny biasply, leave the rest alone!

Awesome



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Beaumontguru

MY BEAUMONT HAS 4 STUDDED TIRES AND 2 BLOCKHEATERS......AND LOTS OF OIL UNDERNEATH



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Congratulations, Carl. Enjoy your new cruiser!

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--Pritch--

'76 Cougar XR7 (original owner); '52 Mercury Monterey 2 dr HT (Future Project)

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FINALLY...... I get a chance to participate in this thread! I saw Todd had posted the my car just before I left work, but with this new house project on the go my computer time is very limited. I spent the evening painting the garage bay at the new place where this car will park. I was picturing it in there while I was painting!

I have a mental to-do list for this car when time permits. Some of it will be way down the road.

Align the left front fender so the moulding lines up properly with the door moulding!

Plug wires and cap. I already bought new Delco wires for it. I can't stand the wires on there, they don't belong on this car!

Tires with no white letters.

Battery cables without those universal terminal ends on them.

Find and replace the left "StratoChief" emblem. It's broken. It's a StratoChi. Fake68 says it must be an Italian car!!!

Detail it, detail it, detail it (without doing any paint work, just lots and lots of cleaning in all the little corners etc.)

Maybe a bone stock 100% original appearing Four Two Seven. I don't think I could bring myself to cut a hole in the floor for a stick though, I think it would have to stay bolt action.



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1966 Strato Chief 2 door sedan 283 "survivor"


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And thanks for all the compliments, I'm pretty thrilled with the car too.

When I got the deposit from Tom for my Grande Parisienne, it was the first time in 44 years that I did not own a 60's car. (Although the Grande was still here, the deal was made) It was a strange feeling. I figured I'd wait for the right driver to come along, one that needed nothing but a driver. I had no idea the right car would come home with me a week before Tom came for his car.

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1966 Strato Chief 2 door sedan 283 "survivor"


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Howmac wrote:

Congrats Carl..... I knew it ! 

What a beauty ...





The funny thing was, I think you asked me if I'd bought it, or if I had it home yet, something like that. When I said no, it was true, but I knew by then it was going to be coming home!

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1966 Strato Chief 2 door sedan 283 "survivor"


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Congrats Carl!

It's rare enough just to see a 66 2 door sedan, let alone a true survivorWhat a treat it was to see it, when I was at your place. 

It's great to see it in your hands, enjoy!

 

 

 



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Tom

Sherwood Park

66 Grande Parisienne 4 speed

66 Laurentian 2 door sedan 

66 Parisienne 2 door hard top, sold. 

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