: Picking up a '77 Coupe DeVille, couple questions on stereo, heat, and slamming it



-BEBOP-
11-15-10, 02:11 PM
Well I found a '77 Coupe w/ 90k for a steal locally so I'll be picking it up on wednesday with the intention of slamming it on some whitewalls and using it a my cruiser to and from work. Everything looks good on the car with the exception of the headliner hanging down (easy fix) and the heater not working. I haven't looked into it much but the guy I bought it from has two more heater control modules (the part on the dash with all th e controls) in the trunk so hopefully that will be as easy as swapping out the bad one for one that works. I was wondering if that's a common problem with these or what? The stereo also doesn't work, also a common problem maybe? I gotta have tune so I'll be putting in a good headunit and speakers but I noticed that the factory radio looks a bit smaller than your standard aftermarket single-din headunit. Is that correct?

It's probably the worst car to get into right before winter but I have a soft spot for big old coupes!


*Side Note* as for lowering it I don't really have the intention of doing bags anywhere in the near future but I will be slamming it. Right now the plan is to cut the springs and then match a set of shorter shocks to the springs. Anybody have some experience with shorter shocks? I've heard a few mixed opinions but I'm leaning towards bilsteins, just not sure which ones to get or should I just get a rough length dimension and give them the weight (per axel) and have them size me up something?

Any feedback is appreciated fellas!

creeker
11-15-10, 02:55 PM
I just had the head liner in my 80 cdv. replaced ( $500.00) what happens after 30 odd years is the
material between the cloth head liner and the roof breaks down and turns into fluff, hopefuly yours
didn't do it, but be prepared to maybe having to replace it, the upholstery guy said it's a common occurence.

csbuckn
11-15-10, 04:25 PM
Welcome
Use springs for lowering a 94-96 impala to slam it low. Plenty people here have them and they will work for caddies 77-96. I have the stock impala springs on mine but I'm looking to go lower.

-BEBOP-
11-15-10, 07:25 PM
I just had the head liner in my 80 cdv. replaced ( $500.00) what happens after 30 odd years is the
material between the cloth head liner and the roof breaks down and turns into fluff, hopefuly yours
didn't do it, but be prepared to maybe having to replace it, the upholstery guy said it's a common occurence.


Well unfortunately that foam layer has completely broken down but I've done a few headliners before, this one will just take more time and work to get all the old stuff out

creeker
11-15-10, 07:37 PM
Well unfortunately that foam layer has completely broken down but I've done a few headliners before, this one will just take more time and work to get all the old stuff out

It's good you can do the job.

jayoldschool
11-15-10, 07:59 PM
Redoing a headliner is so easy my mom did it. I'm not kidding. Her 91 Caprice in Florida had a bad headliner, so I emailed her instructions on how to redo. Ten bucks in adhesive, and thirty in material. A couple hours work.

Here's the proof:

http://i40.photobucket.com/albums/e202/jayoldschool/100_2123.jpg

http://i40.photobucket.com/albums/e202/jayoldschool/100_2124.jpg

http://i40.photobucket.com/albums/e202/jayoldschool/100_2127.jpg

-BEBOP-
11-15-10, 09:00 PM
Redoing a headliner is so easy my mom did it. I'm not kidding. Her 91 Caprice in Florida had a bad headliner, so I emailed her instructions on how to redo. Ten bucks in adhesive, and thirty in material. A couple hours work.

Yeah it's more time consuming than hard work, that's pretty cool that your mom did it though. I recently did the headliner and all the pillars in camo on my WRX. I'd post some pictures, but apparently I can't post pics until I have more than 5 posts :annoyed:

-BEBOP-
11-15-10, 10:14 PM
Say was there a front bench seat version of this car or one that would swap in? This one has the separate power seats with fold-down armrests, etc. Would like to have a full bench seat so my miss can sit right next to me without having to sit against the folded up armrests

jayoldschool
11-15-10, 10:20 PM
Any bench from any 77-up full size GM will bolt in. Look in mid 80s Caprice. Back seats will straight swap, too.

deVille33
11-16-10, 09:09 AM
Where are you located? I have bench seats from 2 devilles I stripped out. 1 green - 1 blue

deVille33
11-16-10, 09:22 AM
The problems with the climate controls are covered in other threads here somewhere. The biggest problem seems to be the resistance generated at the relay block. Some people have been able to remedy this by installing heavier ga. wires to the blower and changing out one of the units in the controller. The original radios are great units. If you want cassette players get an '80's unit, the Symphony. These work great also, but the cassette recievers ( the little guides on the side ) wear out.

-BEBOP-
11-16-10, 09:54 AM
I know what you mean about the factory stereos, they certainly look better in the cars too. But I have thousands and thousands of songs so I have to have something that can play MP3's.

I'm in Kansas City though, any pictures of those seats?

-BEBOP-
11-16-10, 01:59 PM
Welcome
Use springs for lowering a 94-96 impala to slam it low. Plenty people here have them and they will work for caddies 77-96. I have the stock impala springs on mine but I'm looking to go lower.


So I just so happened to see a hanes manual for this body style today and flipped to the suspension section. It looks like the springs (at lest in the rear) are tapered on each end, which looks to me like cutting a coil or two out isn't an option as then it won't have a spring seat, no?

With that said, does anybody have any idea just how low you can get with Imapala lowering springs? I'm looking for super low ride height, but really don't want to guess which springs will be right. I nabbed a picture of a coupe off google and photoshopped it to show what I'm going for:

http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a117/drive_95bd/caddy_double_time.jpg

I've tried searching for more info on this forum but the search function on here is a bit different than most of the other forums out there and I pretty much always get the "sorry no results" message when I search here :hmm:

Any pics of your car with the stock impala springs csbuckn?

csbuckn
11-16-10, 03:48 PM
If you wanna go as low as what you have pictured, you will want bags. You won't be able to drive that low without scrapping the exhaust or something on turns or bumps. I have a pic on here but I'm on my phone, ill have to get to a computer for a pic. AngryMatt has impala lowering springs on his caddy and I think it looks nice and mean.

deVille33
11-16-10, 04:48 PM
I have the seats in 2 different locations. I'll check tommorrow.

deVille33
11-16-10, 04:59 PM
I know what you mean about the factory stereos, they certainly look better in the cars too. But I have thousands and thousands of songs so I have to have something that can play MP3's.

I'm in Kansas City though, any pictures of those seats?


There is a thread in here on radios in which someone he knows mounts an MP3 recepticle in original equiptment radios. Try going back about 3 months worth of posts. Personally, I'd like to try that.

-BEBOP-
11-16-10, 05:01 PM
I know what you mean about scraping csbuckn. I've gotten used to that, low is a lifestyle after all :cool: Now that I can actually post pics I'll show you what I mean. Here's my daily driver:

http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a117/drive_95bd/Side1.jpg

And when my girl wants to go somewhere nice for dinner we take this:
http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a117/drive_95bd/DSC_0004.jpg

SO I kind have a thing for low cars! The only thing that will be unfortunate about getting the caddy that low on springs is the ride comfort will be sacrificed. If I can get that low on springs I'll do it, if not then bags it is I guess...

jayoldschool
11-16-10, 06:40 PM
Can't drive that low on springs. Bags only. If you want the lowest springs you can go for, order some ST lowering springs for an Impala SS. Lowest springs made. They will put that rear fender lip down over the hubcap. Not as far as you want, but you will still be able to drive.

I predict your girl will hate the new car! :D

tiequinn
11-17-10, 04:12 AM
i should lower my 73 Cadillac. it looks better when it's a low rider fo sho

-BEBOP-
11-18-10, 02:46 PM
Well I finally have the coupe in my hands, now onto sorting out all the problems it has

-All lights work, but headlights don't, no horn either-
I've read of a couple things that this could be such as dimmer switch, relay, fusible link, or the sentinel if equipped (need to check)

-Heater not working-
I need to do a bit more poking around to see what's happening (or more like not happening). It does have two new heater controls in the trunk, I guess the first thing to do would be to swap one of those in but I've read a few threads on here about heat and it would seem that the problems other people are having are due to other things like the vent flaps not opening, low coolant, needs coolant flush, etc.. Sound about right?

-Radio not working-
Nothing on the radio works at all however there is a handful of wiring hanging down below the dash that looks like it would go to a more modern stereo head unit judging by some of the connectors and such.

-Taillight surrounds-
Those body-colored plastic panels that surround the taillights are all cracked and broken. Hopefully I can find a good set somewhere and just paint them to match this car. Is there a good after market source for these anywhere or is the junkyard the best bet?


Other than that the car is in great shape and just needs some small things like fresh oil, a couple new weather seals, etc. Thanks for the help so far guys, much appreciated. As for the suspension I believe that I will be spending the next few months (since it's pretty much winter now) getting this car back to tip top shape and then I'll just end up bagging it in the spring. I think I'll be more satisfied that way anyway, especially since I'll be able to just set the car on the ground when it's parked. :cool2:

Stingroo
11-18-10, 03:02 PM
Those taillight fillers are a bitch. Everybody who owns one of these cars just about has problems with them.

Makes you wonder why they weren't just made out of metal anyway.

-BEBOP-
11-18-10, 06:10 PM
Well the heater controls seem to be functioning fine. Took a look under the hood and it would seem that somebody literally cut off the collant in & out connections to the heater core. No wonder it's not working :nono: what genius could have done this I wonder, and further more why? The stranger thing is what looks like the coolant inlet line to the heater core goes to a stand alone thermostat of some kind and then a red hose comes out of it and runs back to the transmission tunnel :hmm:

Angry Matt
11-18-10, 06:59 PM
Maybe the heater core was leaking into the car and that was a cheap way of fixing it?

77CDV
11-19-10, 01:45 AM
Definitely sounds like the heater core was bypassed, probably due to a leak. An easy but time-consuming fix. As for the rear fillers, there are several companies that make reproductions, and they're pretty reasonably priced. Check Hemmings or just google it. I recommend you get a factory service manual ASAP. It's the best investment you could make, and they're fairly cheap on ebay.

Post some pics of your new ride when you get the chance.

-BEBOP-
11-19-10, 01:37 PM
Will do, it looks like we have almost the same coupes from the look of your avatar picture.

77CDV
11-19-10, 10:17 PM
My avatar is a picture of my first car, taken sfasdfraerffasdf years ago. :) It was Sonora Tan. My current car is this one:
http://i197.photobucket.com/albums/aa237/cmchally/2010%20All%20GM%20Show/011.jpg

It's Naples Yellow. What color is you car?

Stingroo
11-20-10, 01:00 AM
My avatar is a picture of my first car, taken sfasdfraerffasdf years ago. :)

You do realize you're younger than both of my parents, right? :lol:

77CDV
11-20-10, 08:26 AM
Not by much..... :(

deVille33
11-20-10, 08:45 AM
I found the seats. The blue seats were 50/50 split bench. The green seat was green velour. The driver's seat back has wear at the entry and needs reupolstering. I have the seat backs broken down so they don't take up as much space.

-BEBOP-
11-20-10, 11:41 AM
My avatar is a picture of my first car, taken sfasdfraerffasdf years ago. :) It was Sonora Tan. My current car is this one:

It's Naples Yellow. What color is you car?

Your new ones is very clean! I think mine is the same color as your old one possibly. Here's a spy shot out of the window:

http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a117/drive_95bd/DSC_0115resized.jpg

outsider
11-20-10, 02:18 PM
wow! nice car bebop!

miwise
11-20-10, 03:01 PM
My dad had one just like it only steel gray. It was really nice. Had a big engine I recall. First car I ever drove. Lol.

deVille33
11-21-10, 09:44 AM
You oviously don't want green or blue bench seat. :o Buckskin or Saddle Brown leather interior would go good or the tan velour. You never see the leather seats in bench style seats. So, it looks like your only option is the tan velour bench seat.

-BEBOP-
11-21-10, 10:39 AM
While we're on the subject of interiors, are there different door panels that can swap into this car by chance?

77CDV
11-21-10, 02:53 PM
The color of your car is called Saffron. Hard to tell what color the interior is, but it's definitely a d'Elegance, which all had the 50/50 seats. The door panels are all the same, except that in a non-d'Elegance car, the center of the panel where the pull strap is is done in vinyl rather than velour. Devilles had the bench seat as standard, in a choice of velour, plaid cloth, or leather. The standard de Ville interior seat pattern for 1977 looks like this, regardless of material:

http://www.lov2xlr8.no/brochures/cadillac/77ca10.html

Best of luck on your project.

gillianwhittaker@xtr
11-21-10, 05:09 PM
impala ss springs will take you lower than impala springs 1/2 in lower i believe
mike

gillianwhittaker@xtr
11-21-10, 05:18 PM
try these for fillers

http://www.replica-plastics.com/index.aspx
http://autorifix.com/cgi/perlshop/perlshop.cgi
http://www.musselmandist.com/CA8R_CALC_CBUM.html

mike

-BEBOP-
11-22-10, 06:52 PM
Thanks for the links mike.

Me and my girl were driving the coupe home yesterday afternoon and one of my hob caps flew off! It looks like the center bolt broke, or whatever was connecting it in the center? Anyway I wouldn't mind finding a different set of caps for this thing anyway but I'm not exactly sure what else will fit on here since the wheel centers stick out so far. I'll devise something to get this cap back on in the mean time...

77CDV
11-23-10, 01:55 AM
Any 15" wheelcover will work.

deVille33
11-23-10, 10:30 AM
Can you post a pic of your wheel cover? The pic you posted doesn't diplay the wheel cover well. The '77 Cadillacs used several different wheel covers. The standard deVille cover had the crest in the center. Optional covers were the turbines with a crest in the center, and the wired covers with crest in center. The deElegance optioned cars had a different set of wired wheel covers, which I believe your car has. The crest sits on a circle of dark red.

77CDV
11-23-10, 01:54 PM
The d'Elegance wires were the same as the wire discs available for all other RWD Cads. The ones on his car now are aftermarket.

deVille33
11-24-10, 10:05 AM
Sorry to dissappoint you, but my deElegance had the same covers, I believe his has, as well as others I have seen. The deElagance interior had hinged pull handles rather than straps.

77CDV
11-24-10, 10:26 PM
I have the 1977 Saleman's Data Book, which lists all the available factory wheel covers. The ones on his car are aftermarket, by ASC I believe. They are not a factory option, though like many ASC items, could be dealer-installed. Also, the d'Elegance interior package used the same door panel design as non-d'Elegance cars, except that the center padded section and door pull strap was in velour to match the seats. It's pictured here:

http://www.lov2xlr8.no/brochures/cadillac/77ca16.html

The hinged pulls you describe came along for the the Fleetwoods in 1978 and the de Villes in 1979.

deVille33
11-25-10, 10:31 AM
You could be right that the wheel covers were dealer optioned. I have 2 sets and will check them for #s. My d'Elegance is a '78 and has the velour pillowed seats. The door panel center is in velour and has hinged pull handles. I have been familiar with this car since it was 8 years old as it was one of my customer's cars. AFAIK the only parts changed out were a few body panels and the rear bumper.

77CDV
11-26-10, 02:33 PM
You may be right about the 1978 door panels, though the 1978 brouchure seems to say they're still like 1977. Mid-year change? I'm really most familiar with the 1977 cars, having been around or driven one or another 1977 RWD Cadillac since they were new.

deVille33
11-27-10, 07:57 AM
Personally, I've never seen a '77 d'Elegance sedan or coupe, nor a d'Marchand. These optioned cars must have been few and far between. 1980 Coupe found a d'Marchand in the junkyard he visits, but it was gone when he returned. Too bad, the interior looked great.

deVille33
12-04-10, 09:41 AM
I found one of the wheel covers from the de'Elegance. I brought it to the other room where the deVille stuff is and set them side by side. On the back side the support / Retaining ring was of similar construction and design. There were no assembly #s which resembled GM #s on either cover. There were 6 digit #s on the center hats of both covers.
I suspect Cadillac commissioned this manufacturer to to produce both covers. The de"Elegance covers are not listed in Yann's directory, so the history of these covers is still conjecture.

-BEBOP-
02-28-11, 09:34 PM
say does anybody happen to have pics of one of these cars with the impala lowering springs or SS springs? having a hell of a time digging up any info on how low they actually go

Powar
02-28-11, 10:32 PM
I'd love to see some pictures of that, too.

cadillac kevin
02-28-11, 11:24 PM
heres a pic I dug off an old thread- this car has a 500 CI caddy motor, hence the front end being a bit lower.
http://i935.photobucket.com/albums/ad196/csbuckn/IMAG0187.jpg

and heres another members 90- it has normal impala SS springs in it.
http://i190.photobucket.com/albums/z251/AstrocreepVIII/Cadillac/DSC02576.jpg

heres how caprice springs stack up with fwb springs:
fleetwood brougham: (base)
caprice 9C1 ( heavy duty springs) same height as fwb, but stiffer (I think)
normal caprice. 1 inch less than 9c1 or fwb springs. softer spring rate than 9c1
stock impala SS springs. 2 inches lower than fwb springs. stiffer than fwb, but not as harsh ride as impala SS lowering springs.
impala SS lowering springs 4 inches? lower than fwb springs.

-BEBOP-
03-01-11, 01:33 PM
it makes me sad that they don't go any lower...

I keep trying to justify not having to do air bags, even though I know it would be worth it. Just hard to pay $2k for a decent bag setup when I bought the car for less!

cadillac kevin
03-01-11, 01:43 PM
if you lower it any more than the cars in my last post, you start running into issues with bottoming out and scraping the ground while turning. if you get air bags, I'd also recommend skid plates. a buddy of mine had a tahoe with skid plates- and hes glad he had them. an air line blew out and the front of his truck slammed the ground. the fenders were messed up a bit, but the skid plates protected the underside of the drivetrain from plowing into the ground.

-BEBOP-
03-01-11, 05:13 PM
Well thats the beauty of it really. Its just like on my black car, i had to modify the fenders to allow more clearance, even pulled the fender liners. I don't mind taking it slow around the corners either. Like they say "low is a lifestyle". It takes a different approach and a little dedication, but its worth it.

cadillac kevin
03-02-11, 12:08 AM
bebop
as for your stereo (dont recall if this was answered somewhere in this thread). you can mount an aftermaket head unit up under the dash where the ash tray goes. you could probably modify the slider mechanism for the ashtray to hold a stereo, then modify the ash tray door to hide the radio.
the factory rear 6x9's should be ok for a 200watt head unit (25-30 watt rms x 4) I've used mine with an aftermarket head unit, and they sounded decent (although mine are 7 years newer than yours)
ditch the front 4x6's- they are 100% crap and are usually sun baked. I had a set that overheated and were singed at the coil and the paper was burnt.

c130mike
03-02-11, 01:46 AM
I also want to lower my 90. But i cannot find a full set of ss springs anywhere.

Stingroo
03-02-11, 09:49 AM
impalassforum.com :)

-BEBOP-
03-02-11, 01:15 PM
^thanks for that. I was able to find the following link with tons of info about all the different impala springs.

Spring, Shocks, Control Arms, Sway Bars, ETC. - ImpalaSSforum.com (http://www.impalassforum.com/vBulletin/showthread.php?t=230247)

Bro-Ham
03-02-11, 02:11 PM
I have the 1977 Saleman's Data Book, which lists all the available factory wheel covers. The ones on his car are aftermarket, by ASC I believe. They are not a factory option, though like many ASC items, could be dealer-installed. Also, the d'Elegance interior package used the same door panel design as non-d'Elegance cars, except that the center padded section and door pull strap was in velour to match the seats. It's pictured here:

http://www.lov2xlr8.no/brochures/cadillac/77ca16.html

The hinged pulls you describe came along for the the Fleetwoods in 1978 and the de Villes in 1979.

Hinged door pulls with cloth door panel inserts were part of the 78 deVille d'Elegance package - look below to see pictures and description from the 78 Cadillac brochure:

http://www.lov2xlr8.no/brochures/cadillac/78ca15.html

http://www.lov2xlr8.no/brochures/cadillac/78ca16.html

My parents had a 78 Coupe deVille d'Elegance and it had the cloth door panel inserts and also door pull swing handles - I just found some pictures of it in the family photo archive, after some digging, and I know I have some pictures of the interior too which I'll post when I find them. :)

Stingroo
03-02-11, 04:47 PM
Epic whitewalls. I want a set of those. :(

Bro-Ham
03-02-11, 06:52 PM
Epic whitewalls. I want a set of those. :(

That's how they all looked back in the day. :)

Stingroo
03-03-11, 12:20 AM
That's how they should look now. Man those would look sweet on my car. :(

Bro-Ham
03-03-11, 10:45 AM
That's how they should look now. Man those would look sweet on my car. :(

get a set then :)

Stingroo
03-03-11, 11:07 AM
Wish I had that much disposable income... :lol:

-BEBOP-
03-03-11, 01:34 PM
Anybody know if these hub caps would fit my '77?

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=300530352790&viewitem=&sspagename=STRK:MEWAX:IT#ht_500wt_1182

Bro-Ham
03-03-11, 02:17 PM
Wish I had that much disposable income... :lol:

"I'm too lazy to make my own signature - seriously." - - Sting

Get off your rear and work - get devoted to something and be your best - you'll be surprised at the disposable income you can tickle yourself with. :)

Stingroo
03-03-11, 02:46 PM
I'm in school and have a job. :thumbsup: Silly fellow you are.