1967 LeSabre 340-4 ST400 2DHT in Finland

Discussion in 'Wet behind the ears??' started by Jami67LeSabre, Aug 8, 2018.

  1. Jami67LeSabre

    Jami67LeSabre Member

    Hello everyone and greetings from Finland.

    Since I'm new to this board I would like to introduce myself and our car. By saying "our" I mean me and my wife, it is nice to share this hobby with her. She is really into cars which of course suits me fine ;)

    Photos from this project: https://goo.gl/photos/2nZTUNbcBCjUNoq38

    Meet Sabrina (LeSabre = Sabrina, obviously :)), she arrived to Finland a year ago from Reno, Nevada. Anyone know this car's history? If so then please let me know.


    We bought the car as not running project with help of a Finnish agent who lives in LA. We were looking for a car that was in decent shape with minimal rust issues. I have some experience in technical stuff so I wasn't that afraid to buy this car even though it couldn't be test driven or didn't even start. After all it was fairly complete with only some minor parts missing such as chrome trim etc.

    I took the engine and tranny apart during last winter. Block was still in STD bore and needed just to be honed and new piston rings. Stock cam sprocket had lost its' nylon teeth and valves were slightly bent due to hitting pistons so valvetrain needed new parts. Transmission got new internals and bearings.

    Interior was also completed and car got on the road in the beginning of June. Warm season in Finland lasts only from May to maybe September so there's not that much time to put miles on the clock and I certainly am not going to use a heavy rear wheel driven car that has no lock as a snow plough :p Also I would hate to see this car rot away from all the salt they use on the roads during winter.

    To this date we've done around a 1000 miles since June so now it is broken in and I can start to test and tune the performance (hey it's a SPORT coupe according to Buick sales brochures :D).

    American cars have a huge popularity in Finland and every weekend during summer there's many car meets to choose from. We do get a lot of thumbs up where ever we go with this car, there are only a few LeSabres and Wildcats in this coutry. Best of all is to see people smile as we slowly cruise by...

    Nice to meet you all

  2. Houmark

    Houmark Well-Known Member

    Welcome from Denmark.. Almost the same as Finland, except we speak words that make sense ;)

    Donuts & Peelouts likes this.
  3. gsfred

    gsfred Founders Club Member

    Welcome aboard from NY.
  4. Jami67LeSabre

    Jami67LeSabre Member

    Hi Houmark and gsfred, it is good to be aboard. I've already had a couple of tips on how I should set the ignition curve and max advance.

    Houmark: haha, don't even get me started on this :p I understand and can talk some Swedish but Danish is like me trying to talk Swedish after drinking a full case of Carlsberg (Danish beer for those who are not familiar) while having my mouth full of potatoes :D
  5. Houmark

    Houmark Well-Known Member

    Norway and Sweden have the same opinion, about Danish sounds like you have a potato in your mouth.. Apparently Finland does to :D

    Way off topic..
    When I was 12, we had an exchange student from Finland staying for one week, and I remember he really really loved green, red and yellow peppers.. He ate them as fast as my parents could buy them, at laest 3 each day..

    Jami67LeSabre likes this.
  6. Double6skylark

    Double6skylark Well-Known Member

    Welcome aboard from Langley, British Columbia Canada!! I am currently building a 340-4, would love to see more pictures. Cheers!
  7. Jami67LeSabre

    Jami67LeSabre Member

    Hi Double6skylark!
    What condition is your 340 in? Does it need a lot of work to get back on the road? Is it still in factory specs? What transmission do you have?
    It's nice to hear from others who are also working on the same engine as I was. I found some photos I hadn't published yet, now uploaded to same gallery.

    Man it's a PITA to get some parts from speedshops around here. Seems that Buicks in general are a small minority of all parts they keep in stock and our car being a LeSabre with a 340 doesn't make things any easier :eek: It sure would be much easier to work on Impala.
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2018
    Double6skylark likes this.
  8. Double6skylark

    Double6skylark Well-Known Member

    I rescued my car that was stored in a shed for the last 24 years last summer. It had a 300-2 which I got running after sitting so long but it only lasted a couple of months. I found a 340 long block, which was freshly rebuilt with new pistons 0.60 over, rod & cam bearings, new cam & lifters and heads also have been rebuilt. Just got a new oil pump, HEI distributor, and just upgraded to a Edelbrock AVS2 (1906) 4 barrel carb from the original Carter. After I complete the motor, next on the plan is getting a 2004R transmission to replace the 2 speed, then on to the rear end. Upgraded to power front disc brakes but kept and put new drums, shoes, cylinders & hardware in the rear. Complete suspension over haul is in the plans before getting her back on the street.
  9. Double6skylark

    Double6skylark Well-Known Member

    Thanks so much for sharing your build project. I notice on your heads you have some hex head plugs in the place where the air pump lines connected to the exhaust port. I'm in need of these plugs for my heads, any idea what size thread thease are?
  10. Jami67LeSabre

    Jami67LeSabre Member

    Sounds like nice upgrades you have there. How does the HEI distributor fit? I've read of some possible clearance issues with cap hitting the intake? Are you planning to keep the engine all iron or maybe get some lighter heads and intake at some point? I'm glad my engine didn't start when I first tried, it would have been distroyed since all the oil passages were clogged from sludge. It also had been sitting for a long time.

    I was wondering what those bolts were but I was pretty sure they were for the air pump fittings. I never took those off while I was doing the grinding of cylinder head runners so I don't know of the thread. Maybe you could get those from your 300 if you still have it? There was a nasty "speed bump" on the port roof right where the bolt comes through. Those bumps are now gone and it should result in much happier little engine :D
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2018
    Double6skylark likes this.
  11. dmfconsult

    dmfconsult Devil in a Blue Dress

    Very much like the car! Looks to be in very nice condition and I would think it wouldn't be too hard to find the few exterior trim pieces you need to finish it off. Have you thought about painting the inside of the headlight bezels satin black to match the grille? Also, do you have all 4 wheel covers for the car? I saw a couple in the earlier pictures. A set of the buick ralley's would look fantastic on your car for that "sporty" look.
    tn_20150619-_MG_0120.jpg tn_20150619-_MG_0114.jpg
    Double6skylark likes this.
  12. 300sbb_overkill

    300sbb_overkill WWG1WGA. MAGA

    Welcome from SE Michigan!
    Jami67LeSabre likes this.
  13. Jami67LeSabre

    Jami67LeSabre Member

    Thank you for comments! I was amazed how little there was rust apart from those body mounts behind rear wheels and battery tray area, just some really minor surface rust in floor pan and frame. So we got what we were looking for, a decent level cruiser. I'm going to do body off the frame restoration some time in future to make it really nice. It'll be a long project so I need to get another American classic (late 60's muscle perhaps :cool:) to drive in the meantime.

    This summer was our first when we got to drive the car so we haven't worried that much about the missing chrome trim or nice wheels, we've just enjoyed cruising around and visiting car meets. I only have three wheel covers at the moment, one is missing. Personally I would like to see wide rubber wrapped on 15 - 17" rim to fill those big wheels wells in the rear, the search continues to find the correct size and appearance.

    The paint on headlight bezels was faded and flaking off so I decided to polish them to see how it looks. Can't really decide which is better, but I'm going to paint the grill and bezels satin black during the winter to make it look original again.

    Your Electra looks SWEET! Love the color. Seems to be a trophy magnet as well, way to go! And also from Nevada :)

  14. pbr400

    pbr400 68GS400

    Welcome from near Atlanta! Nice car, looks like you have sorted it out well. When shopping for wheels pay attention to bolt circle (yours should be 5”), a lot of sellers don’t realize that the big cars aren’t 4.75”.
  15. Jami67LeSabre

    Jami67LeSabre Member

    Hi Derek, it is always good to have an active discussion forum where to get help and new ideas.
    Hi Patrick!
    Being my first old car project it took me almost every weekend between September and May to get everything done and there's still more tinkering left to do the following winter. Yes I'm aware that bolt pattern is 5", that's one thing that makes it a bit more difficult to find wheels. Most on sale here are smaller pattern. Also I want the offset to be on the negative side because of wider wheel, again less of them on the market. Using spacers is an option, but they are illegal to use on street and the car might not pass the annual inspection (stupid laws). The search continues :)
    300sbb_overkill likes this.
  16. dmfconsult

    dmfconsult Devil in a Blue Dress

    My grill and bezels were flaking off when I bought my car, refinishing them was one of the first things I did. Masking took forever, but I was really happy with the way it turned out.

    I’ve had mine for 16 years now so take your time and enjoy the car, it’s a beauty! I’ve gone back to the correct wheel covers for mine (couldn’t order the Electras in 67 with ralleys) but I do like the way the ralleys look. They are out there and if you still have drum brakes on all 4 corners, the later ralleys will work depending on back spacing.

  17. 66electrafied

    66electrafied Just tossing in my nickel's worth

    Welcome from Alberta, Canada!
    Very pretty car you have there! I love the lines on those 2 door hardtops. The long sloping back-end was one of the prettiest treatments GM had ever done to a big car.
    I've a had a few 67 LeSabres and Wildcats, currently I have one of my old Wildcats back.
    Doug mentioned the flaking issue, my Wildcat did the same, as did my last LeSabre. It is worth it to mask it off and respray it, it really accents the "sporty" look they were supposed to have had. Both my cars have the Buick Rallye wheels on them, they look sharp and I wouldn't have any different. My last LeSabre had the stock hubcaps, - which weren't bad, but the Buick road wheels are by far prettier.
    Enjoy your car!
  18. Double6skylark

    Double6skylark Well-Known Member

    Getting close to getting my 340-4 ready to be installed. IMG_3913.jpg
    Houmark likes this.
  19. Double6skylark

    Double6skylark Well-Known Member

    @Jami67LeSabre, I've taken a break but back at working on the 340. The HEI upgrade did take some creative "die grinder work" but i was able to shave enough off the intake and a little on the head to allow the distributor to rotate for timing.
    IMG_3895 (1).JPG

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jan 8, 2019
  20. Ken Mild

    Ken Mild King of 18 Year Resto's

    Button head allen sockets holding the intake on? Now that is a first for me. Never seen that. Looks great though.
    Double6skylark and Houmark like this.

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