We have a rare and handsome 1948 Oldsmobile Series 68 Deluxe Woody for sale with 121K original miles. From time to time we offer some beautiful woodies for sale and this is one of the best. This 3-owner Olds Woody was originally a Colorado car, it has been in California now since 1997. Prior to it's trip to California, it had spent 30 years in Storage in Boulder. Below is the owner's description.
Oldsmobile produced 2,707 Station Wagons in 1948, of which 1,314 were the deluxe Series 68 eight-cylinder model. Base priced at $2,672.00, it was the most expensive model offered by Oldsmobile that year. By contrast, a club coupe was available for a little over $1600.
Body and Paint
Restoration began in 1998. The car was stripped of everything but the cowl, the floor pan and the roof frame. Both of the front fenders and the passenger rear fender were replaced with NOS or excellent fenders. These were stripped and primed. The hood was dipped and primed. The remaining body metal was sanded to bare metal, primed and blocked for new acrylic single-stage paint. Original, factory option wheel skirts were painted to match and installed.
The color is a variant of the stock Oldsmobile Tawny Buff. Some charcoal and maroon were added to give it some punch and to compliment the wheel and interior colors. Some rust was discovered in the floor sill area. These small sections were cut away and patched with sheet metal. Additionally, there were two or three body to frame brackets replaced in the same area. This was a frame-on restoration. The frame was cleaned and painted. Some old undercoating remains in the hard to reach areas.
All of the exterior chrome was re-plated or is in excellent original condition. The stainless trim was restored and buffed. Ornaments and trim were restored where necessary. The interior chrome is original and since the car was well stored, is in excellent condition.
Engine and Drive Train
The original engine was removed in July of 2005 and replaced with a 1968 Chevrolet 283 with Holley 4bbl. carburetor. An HEI electronic ignition system completes the package. The transmission is a GM 700R4, built by Gear Star in Ohio. The exhaust manifolds are GM. The exhaust is dual, through vintage era glass packs. The radiator was rebuilt and expanded. An electric, Perma-Cool fan system was installed. The system is thermostatically controlled and very efficient. The engine never exceeds 190 degrees at idle on the hottest of days. A modern temperature gauge is discreetly mounted below the dash. A total of fewer than 5,000 miles has been logged on the new drive train.
The engine starts easily and provides plenty of power for acceleration and freeway driving. The car drives and handles smoothly. Even though it does not have power steering, it is quite easy to handle in parking situations.
The brakes are restored original equipment. The linings were specially ordered asbestos linings. These perform better than the newer “bonded” linings and are less subject to fade and overheating. That is not to say that they won’t overheat. I have found it wise to take the car out of overdrive on long downhill stretches.
The front suspension is stock, knee-action shocks with slightly shorter coil springs to make up for the lighter engine and transmission. The steering is stock. The driveshaft was shortened. The differential is stock with 3.92 ratio. A slightly higher ratio in the rear would improve the current 16mpg highway mileage. The car runs best on high-test fuel. The rear shocks are tubular gas shocks. The original rear shocks are still in place, though non-functional.
A new wiring harness from Harnesses Unlimited was installed. The battery is a 12-volt Omni dry cell, zero maintenance battery. It is mounted in a compartment in the passenger fender well with a positive shut-off switch mounted on the inner fender well, just below the hood hinge.
Goodyear wide whitewall radial tires were installed on the stock wheels in 2007. Radial tubes add further protection from leakage.
Most of the ash frame wood is original to the car. The two rear quarter beltline pieces are new, as is the lift gate. The paneling is new African ribbon mahogany. Eight coats of spar varnish were applied as a finish. The roof stringers were replaced with 5/4 alder, 1/4” thick.
The vinyl top is material from LeBaron Bonney and is no longer being produced. The original drip rails were missing from the car. Since these are not available, a special edging strip was installed in their place.
The interior was re-upholstered in wool Bedford cord and maroon vinyl to match the original. The sun visors are the original material and are in perfect condition. A matching automotive carpet was used throughout. The original luggage strips and some of the original interior trim did not come with the car. These have not yet been fabricated. The doors had vinyl kick panels when the car was new. I like the look of the car without kick panels. I have the top stainless trim for these panels. The seat surrounds were originally chrome tubing. These were not with the car when purchased and so were fabricated from steel rod. These could be chromed in the future, if one so desired.
The heater was rebuilt. It is incredibly efficient. The dashboard was removed and repainted to match the original deluxe maroon color. The instrument panel and the glove box Lucite panel were sanded and polished to remove crazing. All of the instruments are adjusted to 12 volt and are functional except for the temperature gauge. The new gauge performs this function. The radio faceplate and dials are installed for appearances, only. Circa sixties seat belts were added for safety purposes.
An after market, vintage turn signal system was installed. The bumper guard parking lights were modified for turn signals and an additional taillight completes the system. The original horns work with a new 12-volt relay.
Most of the window glass is new. The original latches for the rear quarter sliding window were missing. I fabricated new latches using polished aluminum stock. The door handle and window crank escutcheons were fabricated from Birdseye maple. The tailgate hardware was replaced or restored. The rear Oldsmobile emblem is extremely rare and it took three years of searching to find one in any condition. Once found, I had this one restored by a specialist in the mid-west.
An MP3 stereo receiver by Retrosound was installed with four 4” Blaupunkt speakers. The stereo is installed out of sight in the glovebox and is operated through infrared remote.
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