Post by AZBlues on Jan 3, 2023 22:22:23 GMT -5
That's quite an update, 77. The book snafu is a comedy of errors, it would seem that Vistaprint laid off the QC department for budgetary concerns. Or something. I might have overlooked the extent of the Canadian winter, or overlooked it entirely as winter down here in the Remote Desert Outpost is car building weather. The snowbirds all scurry away around May, and anything after that requires shade and a roll-around swamp cooler pointed right at you.
Post by 77granfury on Jan 8, 2023 22:17:37 GMT -5
The Canadian winter steals around 5 months of car building time off our clock, that's if you don't like frost bite and have no heated shop - but I've become soft. In my early 20s, pulling a rear axle with minimum tools in the middle of a snowstorm and zero visibility was no problem, now I catch myself driving the car to have oil changes done "because it's not worth my time" (or other similarly stupid excuses..."they said it might rain in the afternoon", "it's cheaper than buying oil and filter myself"...) Lies.
I remember working on my buddy's Southern truck a few years back - and I didn't need my blow torch to crack ANY bolts loose, I didn't need safety glasses to work under it because I wasn't snowed on by loose rust chunks, but the interior was absolutely toast. There couldn't have been more cracks in the dash pad, I didn't know that seat foam can actually burn from the sun once all the vinyl shreds disappear and the steering wheel reminded me of an abacus that could have been used to calculate mpgs with the "beads" left on the wheel.
Here we have rusted bodies and fairly mint interiors, because our sun isn't that hot asides from July and August. Have a look at this Royal Monaco, just found it on the weekend and couldn't believe how bad the body was...
This poor Royal was probably a Police car, very basic green interior, simple vinyl bench in excellent shape, rubber floors (but no floors underneath), the police door panels widely used in the movie Bluesmobiles, speedo and gauges missing.
I couldn't believe how much effort somebody put in to patch a terribly rusted door. The passenger side is similar. This is one of the worst I've seen.
Post by 77granfury on Jan 8, 2023 23:44:07 GMT -5
It's been quite mild on the weekend, so Lil' Elwood and me decided to go to a junkyard and find a few of the things we have on our "to-do/find" list - and then we came up with a pretty decent idea -
if you like the bitter-sweet look of the once proud Detroit iron now sitting in a field:What happened to all the "other" cars of the Blues Brothers movie? Can we locate them and bring them back on screen for a last time?
PART ONE: The forgotten stars of "The Blues Brothers" Carrie Fisher's 1977 Pontiac Grand Prix
We received a hint from a former producer that Carrie's 77 Grand Prix is at the same junkyard in Southern Ontario, Canada, where we frequent to find cigarette lighter refills for our Bluesmobile.
We travelled immediately over an hour Southwest and spoke to strange locals in overalls at first to hear some myths and details around this story. And this is what we learned:
Carrie had a fling with the yard owner, but he stood her up on their wedding day as he cared more about his yard than a demanding lady from the big city. It says she might have killed the yard owner after,
but no body could ever be found.
It took us a while to find her, but she still has the looks she had back in 1979/80! A little patina has gotten to her driver's fender and tip of the hood, but after 40 years in a field, we wouldn't look any better, that's for sure.
Of course we'll find the 2 "Illinois Nazi" Ford wagons and maybe a couple more surprises...
And just to be clear, none of the above is even remotely true.
Post by 77granfury on Jan 14, 2023 22:55:16 GMT -5
Off to the junkyard again! This time we made quite a few finds and scores, but I'll keep that for a later update when something actually happens. Right now it's "gather parts for spring" time, and it's getting cold around here.
While the cold nicely froze over all the puddles and swampy areas on the yard, snow started covering the cars now, and the cold also prevented Lil' Elwood from enjoying his several-hours-long walk across a junkyard in the middle of nowhere while his daddy fails at undoing rusted bolts and screws (but always succeeds at swearing on a whole new level).
I was very organized - THIS TIME. I had a list of what to get from which car, several wrenches were setup with the correct sockets for specific tasks, all in separate clear plastic bags - not only to keep the weight of our tool cart down, but also to save important minutes that could make or break our excursion - judging by my little man. The plan was to move fast so he stays warm, get the parts off quickly so he doesn't get bored and then start taking pictures of some legendary movie cars we found in a hidden area...
Plans never work for me. But hey, we got loads of WD40 on some parts for next time - and Lil' Elwood had a great day: he loved taking pictures of the "forgotten stars of the Blues Brothers movie", and that quickly became our main focus this time. We did find a few more...PART TWO: The forgotten stars of "The Blues Brothers"
The Illinois Nazis. While we don't own the Blues Brothers book yet that describes how the "Illinois Nazis" originally wanted to buy the Orphanage, we definitely don't like Illinois Nazis as well. Not even their cars. In fact we know so little about Fords that we weren't even sure if the green LTD wagon, that we were told is resting at the yard, was a 73/74 or a 75/76, and both cars we found were in such horrible condition, that even the organic "White Power" badges were gone and must have turned to compost. ABOVE:
It could've been the '73 LTD wagon above as it must have broken in two or lost the front clip while driving into its grave, nicely dug by little buddy Pinto. But also the '75 above shows some front damage...
Easier to find was the Pinto Wagon, or at least the one survivor we found. Apparently it was the car the Illinois Nazi actors used to drive from and to the set.
Some say we used fancy filters to correct the car's colour, some even say we used Ms.paint to digitally place the correct decal on its back, but that's of course all fake news, BS and lies. ABOVE
: Pinto 2dr wagons were famous for comfortably carrying up to 4 passengers and a large bronze eagle. Head room was plenty, even when wearing steel helmets.
Then suddenly we stumbled over another '77 Pontiac Grand Prix - with CORRECT damage to the front - what a coincidence - so that we clearly have to debunk our statement from the last post, because we're both "men" enough to admit when we're wrong: THIS
is Carrie Fisher's Grand Prix, not the one from last week's post! This one also had Pontiac rally 2 wheels on it, not aluminum snowflakes, and we found evidence in form of multiple bottles of nail polish remover on the rear seat - now if this
isn't proof enough! ABOVE:
Carrie might be gone for good, but her elegant ride lives on. Out of respect we covered the 400 with a small Horizon hood that was leaning on her fender, because the original hood seemed too far away.
After a minute of silence we got back up from our knees and kept looking for John Candy's '73 Polara - it would have been in "chocolate pudding brown". Instead we stumbled over something we couldn't believe at first! A 1977 Royal Monaco of the Chicago Police Department! What was this car doing across the border, thousands of miles away from "home"? (ok, I exaggerated a bit, it's not THAT far away). Was it just a clone or the real deal? While many markings were hard to read, the blue stripe and red lettering gave it away - and there was a "Lou Malnati's" pizza box on the rear seat. This car was DEFINITELY from Chicago and, given the other movie cars we found on this yard, this MUST have been yet another movie car find!ABOVE:
Hard to believe, but we saw it with our own eyes! While only a 360 car, the smashed in rear was a clear sign the car had a role in the large pile up at Lower Wacker Drive!
I know that we were going to focus on the "forgotten stars" of the movie, but when I show you what we found next, you'll excuse us: the MAIN ACTOR! I believe there were 12 or 13 Bluesmobiles for the movie, including one that was made to break apart. We all know that. For years we're trying to find evidence that a real "movie Bluesmobile" still exists, for years we're reading reports on finds in Milwaukee and Chicago junkyards, for years we hear of a car that has been given away and found its way to a former Police officer that doesn't want to sell it... Well, Blues Brothers community! We found what we think is the ONLY remaining Bluesmobile in existence - PROVEN by our picture! Everything else is just rumours.
When we stumbled across the elegant lines of this Bluesmobile, we couldn't believe what we found, but of course we were suspicious. Is it just another project that somebody gave up on? Like a well-oiled machine, we went through our checklist: was it a real Police car? Yes. Fender tag and engine were missing, but rear axle was a 9.25, judging by the shape of the diff, clearly visible through the non existing trunk floors. We thought we could make out the letters "PK41" through the cracked windshield's bottom corner. Door frames, actually all 4 doors, were painted black, like on CHP cars - used for the Blues Brothers movie - had it been a clone, the window frames would have been white for sure! But then the ultimate proof: under the rear seat we found broken sunglasses, a Universal studios pen, a couple cans of Budweiser and a few bags of cocaine. ABOVE:
The only remaining Bluesmobile from the 1980 movie! Yes, some front sheet metal was originally blue, but you know what? 1974 Monacos of the Chicago Police Department were blue, too. Clearly Chicago cruiser spare parts.
At this point we both got really cold, the sun was about to disappear somewhere behind the yard or the forest and we still had an hour long drive home so that we decided to wrap it up, forget about John Candy's '73 Polara and 6 possible ISP cars in an area of the yard we haven't been to yet, and come back another day when the weather is a little friendlier. I hope our "sub-par photoshopping" didn't lead you to believe our lies, after all we used Microsoft Paint, because I don't even own photoshop or know how to use it... BUT: all the cars are there, we just added some markings, some holes in the grille and some stickers. The Bluesmobile might be an old Ontario Provincial Police car, it seems to be a legit cop car, and it's the Royal pictured in my previous post with the huge patches all over the doors.
I hope you enjoyed this, we'll have meaningful updates next time, I'll promise!
Post by Steam McQueen on Jan 17, 2023 17:58:06 GMT -5
^ Another outstanding post from '77 and Lil' E ! Some creative photo-shopping going on as well by the looks of it
Love that Grand Prix, and that front end damage is really reminiscent of the Mystery Lady's ride. As far as I know, it has never been explained how she wound up with that damage. I speculated at one time that she saw someone that looked like Jake and let him have it, lol. She might
be a sociopath.
For the year of the wagon, in case anyone was wondering, the IMCDb lists it as a 1975 so that's what I went with when I posted this one ...
Aside from the roof rack a pretty close example to the screen car.
Post by AZBlues on Jan 17, 2023 18:29:44 GMT -5
Great post, 77. It's really intriguing just how rusted that Monaco is, but the somewhat desperate previous owner gets extra points for the galvanized repair panels on the driver door - with special consideration for the mirror brace panel. That, folks, is true dedication.
Post by 77granfury on Mar 5, 2023 12:08:09 GMT -5
Thank you for the nice words - unfortunately, posts like our last one have absolutely no educational value to anyone, and even the front end damage on the Grand Prix was SLIGHTLY modified - digitally, the grilles however were missing. We'll make up for that in the next post, because, of course, we found some interesting things again...
That '75 Ford wagon is great and you're absolutely right, that IS the correct car, I would probably even drive that one to Chicago (as long as the "White Power" badges aren't on it...)AZBlues
"Dedication" is probably a nicer word than "Desperation". I've found quite a few Monacos on old junkyards and just can't understand how this owner rather opted for such a fix rather than pickup a nicer door for $40 or so. Almost every Monaco door at exactly that junkyard is still in better condition after decades of sitting in a wet field than any door or body panel on exactly this car... but who knows... a 16 year old fixing up grandpa's old cab/cop car as a 1st car? A cab company throwing some lipstick on a pig to make it through the winter in style before the "new Oldsmobiles" arrive? We'll never find out...
Post by 77granfury on Mar 5, 2023 13:45:35 GMT -5
Little Winter Update/JUNKYARD FINDS!
Since our last post was full of lies, photoshopped pictures and didn't really help anyone here (we're talking educational value/intellectual importance) we have to change that with a post "oozing of secret insider knowledge". We also finally have some time for some pre-season news, after all it's March 2023 and we're about a month away from the last snowfall of the season - and the season where mosquito- and heat-stroke-free car work is on the daily menu! Time to tackle our "to-do" list and find the parts that need to go on the car in a few months...!
So far, our winter looked more like this: ABOVE: The tarp blew off, a foot of snow was just about to cover our Bluesmobile again. Time for mulled wine.ABOVE:A '74 Gran Fury that originally had a 400 - we took the 120mls speedo, because that's still better than our 100mls unit ABOVE: 1974 Monaco 360 car, we took the header panel although it was in ROUGH shape, but at least no dents.ABOVE: ...and a '74 Chrysler Town and Country wagon...with the 440...that was long gone.
Hold on - a '74 Chrysler 440 wagon? Didn't they come with limited slip rear axle and Police spec front sway bar/torque bars, maybe even a rear sway bar? I have to do my homework, but one thing I was very sure about: Sometimes it's not that easy to spot something special, and I'm glad I looked closer at that one: roof mounted mirror! Double speaker dash trim piece! Horn ring steering wheel!
The smashed in windshield gave it away: it had the ceiling/roof mounted mirror! The 440 was long gone, the interior was not the prettiest, and the screws that held the mirror in the roof were victimized
by a previous picker before and it was impossible to get them out. Given the windshield was gone, I turned to power tools and cut the roof including the mirror off. Done. While I was laying on the hood doing surgery,
a nice steering wheel smiled at me - and so did the metal trim piece that covers the front (center) speaker: it was what I've been looking for for a while! A dual front speaker panel!
Our Bluesmobile came with an aftermarket stereo and two front speakers, tucked under the dash. When I had our dash pad off, I saw that there's a nice and neat factory location to place dual front speakers
in, and ever since I've been emailing every guy that parts out a New Yorker or Newport, hoping they have the desired panel - without luck! Even the 76-78 New Yorkers I've found only had the center speaker, and while
it's hard to believe that this panel isn't more common, I can only recommend that you grab one when you see one, especially when you're running an aftermarket radio: ABOVE: Finally found a dual speaker panel and also a '74 Chrysler version of the Bluesmobile horn ring steering wheel! ABOVE: If you like to keep your speakers hidden but prefer half-way decent stereo sound, try to find this panel.
But now to the mirror - I found a very detailed post stating the parts numbers of the "movie correct mirror mount" and mirror, but when I compared the numbers, it didn't match the number that was on this specific mirror. I'm not sure how many different mirror mounts there are, but I took some pictures of the '74 mirror besides a '70 or '71 Polara/Monaco mirror. The actual mirror is pretty much the same. The '74 mirror mount is a little smaller and doesn't have any sharp corners/looks a little more rounded off, and its mirror arm is a good inch longer. Other than that - the screw-pattern is exactly the same, I can screw all 3 Phillips screws of the '70/'71 mirror into my butchered roof section of the Town and Country, and that tells me that we can use ANY late 60s/early 70s Mopar roof mounted mirror in place of the plastic bracket that keeps our visors up by using AT LEAST the same 2 screws. If our roof panels didn't get changed and all have 3 pre-drilled holes (I was only able to verify that all '74s had the 3 holes), then it's fair to say that we can blindly shoot that 3rd rear screw into our headliner, too. ABOVE: A piece of the roof, a piece of the headliner, but at least a complete mirror.The imprint on the headliner looks like it was the only mirror that has ever been up there (stock!). ABOVE: I found a total of 4 wagons, 2 were '74s, and only this one had "the mirror"! PART NUMBER 18700 3760511ABOVE: The mirror arm is a bit pitted, but I'll take it apart and have it blasted, that could/should do the trick.
Now to all our friends that spent more time with their snow shovels and wives in the last months, because they don't own heated garages or live in Southern temperatures, HANG IN THERE. Spring is knocking on the door!
As always, thanks for reading and if I can help you out somehow, please shoot us a message!
Post by 77granfury on Mar 6, 2023 8:05:36 GMT -5
Just quick in regards to the burgundy '74 440 Town and Country wagon: all I could decipher using a few stickers, the VIN and a rusty fender tag - maybe someone can give me some pointers in regards to usual rear axle (I think there was no rear sway bar in '74). You know what we need to be able to say: "...it's got cop shocks, cop suspension, cop tires,...
C = Chrysler
P = Premium
46 = 9 Passenger Wagon
T = Unknown
4 = 1974
B = Dodge Main, Hamtramck, MI, USA
Sequence Number '122645'ABOVE: A lot of valuable information gone for good...most likely.
Post by AZBlues on Mar 7, 2023 19:06:28 GMT -5
Nice find on the dual speaker trim plate, I'd like one of those too. Good info on the post mount mirror, I didn't know the screw holes were the same between those and the visor clip on the windshield mount cars; great fact to add to the Trivial Pursuit, Bluesmobile Edition list.
Post by 77granfury on Mar 14, 2023 15:24:12 GMT -5
Let me explain this:
Lil' Elwood reminded me multiple times over the past few days that today is a very special day: it's been exactly one year since markinblues convinced us to share our little Bluesmobile story,
and I enjoyed writing and posting it here, too. It also made Lil' Elwood happy, because he wanted a webpage for the Bluesmobile, and the instagram page I made for him just didn't seem to cut it. Apparently.
Unfortunately I'm of the wrong generation to know a lot about how to pick a host and design one of these "webpages", let alone figuring out how to share and upload pictures here, but a little bit of training
and the forum just did the trick.
So: Celebrate with us our first 12 months of storytelling on the Bluesmobile Proboards!
MARCH 14th, 2022 - MARCH 14th, 2023
-------------------------------------- F I R S T A N N I V E R S A R Y ---------------------------------------
I keep telling myself that I need to post something special for this Anniversary, unfortunately it's neither the right weather to do big things outside, nor have I been saving a secret story for months
to present to you guys, like... "Remember the rotten but rare '74 K-code Monaco we found with 440? This engine, my friends, is now, after months of secret work, under the hood of our Bluesmobile,
the Gran Monaco!" Nope. This never happened. Wishful thinking.
Instead I had to search deep up my sleeves to find something interesting to post until I found this:
Here's PROOF that the famous Bridge Jump was shot on Friday, August 17th, 1979 in the "Daily Calumet"!!!! But read my little transcript yourselves:
"Blues Brothers" John Belushi (left) and Dan Aykroyd wait for a shot to be set up during production of their movie on location
at the 95th Street bridge Friday. In this scene they used a squad car to flee from police in a jump over the partially opened
bridge. The stars from Saturday Night Live are portraying two musicians whose dream is to leave Calumet City and find success
with their band in Chicago. More exclusive photos of the film production are on the back page (Daily Calumet Photo)
Saturday, August 18th, 1979
Film Fans Sing The 95th Street Bridge Blues
By Tom Leyden (Staff Writer)
Based on experience, the "Blues Brothers" movie will probably be a smash, but the curious bystanders watching the filming on the 95th Street Bridge Friday learned that movie making is boring.
Universal Pictures selected the bridge to stage a spectacular jump scene. But none of Chicago Police Department black and white squad cars to be used in the sequence were ever airborne in this morning's work.
Instead local residents caught glimpses of the Saturday Night Live stars John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd and were ushered away from the location by members of the film crew so the camera would not see them.
The "Blues Brothers" have been trying to keep a low profile shooting at area steel mills and on East Side and South Chicago streets. But it is impossible to hide a film crew of several hundred persons, the numerous
equipment trucks and two of televisions best known stars. The studio tried to keep interference at a minimum and give the location a natural look.
Preparations for the shoot began early Friday morning, as motorhomes, that serve as dressing rooms, and equipment trucks converged on the Federal Marine lot on the southeast side of the bridge. Police closed off
access to the bridge, allowing only film crew vehicles and 10 cars to be used in the background to pass.
The drivers of the 10 cars spent most of the time parked near the bridge waiting for the director's commands. The driver's, mostly Chicago residents and not professional actors, would receive about $40 for their
At about 10 a.m. Aykroyd and Belushi were on the front seat of an old squad. A camera was mounted outside the driver's window and a technician hid in the back seat. The beat-up police cruiser was attached to the
back of a pick-up truck that would pull it during the filming.
Under the bridge, a fire department scuba team stood by in their boat, in case a freak accident occurred and one of the vehicles plunged into the Calumet river. The truck and cruiser pulled out of the lot and headed
to the west end of 95th Street at South Chicago Avenue. They turned and made one pass over the bridge. By noon they had traveled across the river 3 times, and none was perceptibly different from another.
In the two hours of filming the number of persons watching the production grew from three to about 25. They tried to hold out for the best vantage points at the western foot of the bridge, but police and Universal
employees moved them away as it was time to film. The best view of the movie location was from Calumet Fisheries, 3258E. 95th. But inside co-owner Leonard Toll(?), was singing the blues. Friday is the busiest day for
a fish market, but filming took precedence over commerce. With police shutting down traffic, sales of smoked chubs and fried shrimp were down drastically. At 10am, sales were off by $100. Two packages of smelt and
two bottles of soft drinks had been sold, according to employees Loretta Baumgart and Mary Gagliano. "We're going to take a great loss", Toll said as he rested on the counter and watched the film crew scurry around.
"It's going to cost us about $2000", he lamented.
Toll began to get a little more indignant each time a Universal employee would stick his head in the door and ask the employers and customers to stay away from the windows during shooting. If the fish store lost out,
then the Hollywood studio gained.
The "Blues Brothers" has all the ingredients of a sure-fire hit movie. It will be filled with car stunts, including the demolition of about 50 police cars, purchased by Universal. The Soundtrack will feature songs from Aykroyd
and Belushi's top selling album, "Briefcase full of Blues". And of course, there is the starring duo, who are considered two of the hottest comedians.
A truck, carrying members of the film crew, tows the stars of the "Blues Brothers" during shooting on the 95th and
South Chicago Avenue. Lights are rigged to the hood of the ancient squad car.
Hold on...did they say ANCIENT??? In 1979??? That car was basically 5 years old during filming!?
One of the stunt cars that will be used in the jump waits under its target. The movie will
make extensive use of auto stunts shot in Chicago. (DC)
..."No, I don't like it"...
Looks like they cranked up the torsion bars quite a bit for better landing...
I did hear that the Bluesmobile was pulled up the bridge?
The final jump?
I found above article along with several completely faded pictures on the wall of "Calumet Fisheries" last August and always wanted to post the details. I thought it's a really interesting article
with some details, some true, some not, but that makes it quite a good read. The newspaper should have been the "DAILY CALUMET" of August 18th, 1979. While they promised more pictures on other
pages, I couldn't see or find any.
But here's some more details about the paper: The Daily Calumet was published in (South) Chicago, Illinois from 1965–1987 and while UIUC lists every single year of the paper as microfilmed,
they seemed to have stopped in December of 1978. I bet many Chicago based newspapers have some interesting articles in late summer/fall of 1979...
I hope you enjoyed it, that's it for today, next substantial updates will come when my hot coffee doesn't freeze solid while laying under the car to figure out an exhaust "situation".
Post by Steam McQueen on Mar 18, 2023 12:50:33 GMT -5
^ Great stuff. Those newspaper pics sure are fading, I suppose the paper smells like fish and chips.
A year already, eh ! I think time accelerates as we get older, yesterday I was a young man, today ... I can't find my shoes
We used to be more active around here, more folks posting and what have ya but as time as drifted on we lost a bunch of regulars to facebook. Which I understand, lots more going on there. We can see by the numbers here that plenty of folks are reading your thread, just not as many posting comments as we used to have back a few years ago.
Whenever there's an anniversary only one song comes to mind. Any Flintstones fans here ? Lol
Barney singing with the CPD I mean the BPD !
Barney must be part owl the way he can turn his head 180° like that !