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1993 Sedan DeVille, 1978 Coupe DeVille (Project Car)
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi everyone,

I have been meaning to post for some weeks, but have been so busy with fixing up my new Caddy. It is a 1978 Coupe Deville with 180,000 miles, but 25,000 miles on a rebuilt engine. I bought it for $900 through a craigslist add. It is Light Blue with a Light Blue interior. It needs a lot of work, but I like challenges. The person that I purchased the car from reupholstered the front seat and installed a new headliner. The interior needs a good cleaning and a new armrest and dash top cover. Other that that, it is in pretty good shape. The exterior is not in the best shape, but is not that bad. It will eventually need a rear bumper and possibly a front bumper if I ever came across it. The trunk lid has some rot in it, I am going to clean that up as best as I can until I find a replacement trunk lid. There is a little surface rust starting up on the bottom of the door and quarter panel, no rot, just surface rust. Same on the top portion of the hood, much of this is from a cheap paint job with poor preparation. I will clean off all the rust and touch up the car for now. Within the next 1-2 years, a paint job will be in order. It appears that the bottom portion of my motor is new and the heads were either overhauled or just bolted back on, it is hard to tell. The motor job was done 6 years ago, so things got kind of dirty. It had a pretty bad miss when I got the car and people were telling me that the motor had a bad valve or worn camshaft lobe. Well, after tracking down a bunch of different vaccum leaks, it is finally under control. The 425 is a nice running motor, once it is under control. I am slowly getting the car road worthy, I have done a full tune up, tuned the carbureator (Has been rebuilt once already), installed new belts (That really quieted the engine down), All new brake lines to the rear, I am in the process of overhauling all of the fuel lines and cleaning up the gas tank, this car must of been in a very wet area, there is a lot of surface rust on the frame and all lines running under the car. Thank goodness that the frame is still rock solid and the floors have no rust on them. The frame just needs a lot of cleaning up to keep them solid. The car also needs a couple of new tires and some front suspension work. Then it will be ready for the road.

Well I think I ranted enough, here are some pics.
Let me know what you think!

Mike
 

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1979 Coupe Deville, 1995 FWB & 6 Other Non-Cadillacs.
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759 Posts
Nice color Coupe, Lots of potential. Good luck my fellow Jersian...I have poured over 12 large into my Fleetwood and it's still not perfect. The only advice I can give you is stay persistant and make sure your pockets run deep. I turned this...

Into this...
 

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1993 Sedan DeVille, 1978 Coupe DeVille (Project Car)
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54 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Wheelman,

Thats a nice looking fleetwood that you have, it looks like we have the same color paint job on our cars. Your repaint looks just like what the factory color looks like on my car (inside the trunk). Right now I am in the process of installing new fuel lines and refurbishing the gas tank. Hopefully the car will be somewhat roadable by next week.

Thanks for the reply,
Mike
 

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1979 Coupe Deville, 1995 FWB & 6 Other Non-Cadillacs.
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759 Posts
No prob,
Good luck and yes, your Coupe is the exact same color as my Fleetwood...That car will be sexy as hell when you're done with it. Be sure to keep us updated with pics. I'm always happy to see a Cadillac go to the hands of someone who will give it the care it deserves.:bouncy:
 

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1979 Phaeton Coupe, 1990 Brougham d'Elegance 5.7 liter
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4,416 Posts
Great looking Coupe!

But the first thing I noticed: get rid of the rake. It appears that your front springs are worn out, and the rears have been replaced. So get a new set of front springs to make everything level again.

It looks solid, love the color. You said you need tires? A little advice; get the correct 1.3 inch whitewall! Most people just get 0.75" whites like you have now, but their not correct for the car. The right whitewalls really make a difference. With that blue, it will just pop.

Here's a link to what I'm talking about.

https://www.tiresavings.com/tireShop.php?action=findMan2&manufacturer=Yokohama&tirename=CLASSIC+CAR+WIDE+WHITEWALL&season=

You can get them from a number of places, I have them on my '79 Phaeton Coupe and love them. You'll want the 215-75 size.

Here's how they'll look on your car.




Now, I'll get out of here before I scare you off. :p
 

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1993 Sedan DeVille, 1978 Coupe DeVille (Project Car)
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54 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Benzilla,

Thanks for your comments, and I do agree about putting on the Dimemsion IV tires on the car. I already had plans of putting them on the car after seeing pictures of them on this board. In regards to what you said about the front hanging low, I think that may have been due to the front tires going flat. When I first got the car the front tires were not beading correctly and thus were not holding air, now they are holding air. Since I am tight on money, I am doing two new front tires and will place the old front tires on the back in the meantime. Later this summer, I will get two new back tires. Everything will get its chance on this car in due time.

Mike
 

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1979 Phaeton Coupe, 1990 Brougham d'Elegance 5.7 liter
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4,416 Posts
Good to hear. It might be the tires as you said. But just out of curiosity, why not measure the height at both ends of the side rocker trim and see if it's level? It won't affect performance or anything, I guess I'm just too anal about height. But for me it really changes the look of a car, 'ya know?

Either way, that's a beautiful car, a diamond in the rough if you will. I can't wait to see as you progress. Be sure to keep us posted!
 

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77 CDV, 06 DTS III, 69 FWB
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10,022 Posts
Mike,

Congratulations on your new project. Looks like you have a reasonable place to start from. I think both the back and front seats have been redone, as the pattern is not correct for 1978. Looking forward to more pics as you progress. Happy motoring!

Craig
 

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1979 Coupe Deville, 1995 FWB & 6 Other Non-Cadillacs.
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759 Posts
Here is some food for thought...Here is what I spent on my 78 to get it back in shape:
Rebuilt motor...all new pumps included...2500
Rebuilt Trans...adjusted for firmer shifts..900
New Radiator...200
New Starter....150
New Battery....100
New Master Cylinder+
All New Front and Rear Pads, Rotors, and lines...1000
New HD Rear Springs & Air Shocks...300
Chrome 9C1 Rear Sway Bar...From one of my old Caddys.
Body Stripped, Primed and Painted Factory Blue...2500
New Tuxedo Vinyl Roof...200
New Rear Body Fillers...250
New Carpet...200
New Floormats...100
Rain Gaurds...50
Pinstriped...NC
OEM Factory Wire Wheels and Wide Whitewalls...1200

And it's still not done!

In the next week i'm doing...
96 9C1 crossmember
True Dual Exhausts
79 WS6 Steerind Box
F Body Front Sway Bar
 

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1979 Phaeton Coupe, 1990 Brougham d'Elegance 5.7 liter
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4,416 Posts
Here is some food for thought...Here is what I spent on my 78 to get it back in shape:
Rebuilt motor...all new pumps included...2500
Rebuilt Trans...adjusted for firmer shifts..900
New Radiator...200
New Starter....150
New Battery....100
New Master Cylinder+
All New Front and Rear Pads, Rotors, and lines...1000
New HD Rear Springs & Air Shocks...300
Chrome 9C1 Rear Sway Bar...From one of my old Caddys.
Body Stripped, Primed and Painted Factory Blue...2500
New Tuxedo Vinyl Roof...200
New Rear Body Fillers...250
New Carpet...200
New Floormats...100
Rain Gaurds...50
Pinstriped...NC
OEM Factory Wire Wheels and Wide Whitewalls...1200

And it's still not done!

In the next week i'm doing...
96 9C1 crossmember
True Dual Exhausts
79 WS6 Steerind Box
F Body Front Sway Bar
You and I are on the same road. I have a very similar list..

But I am curious about your engine rebuild. Why did you have it done, was it high miles? What kind of place did you have it done at? Are you satisfied with how it came out, and is there more power?

I had a Jasper engine put into my '84 Cutlass, and I can't count how many times I had to take it back.
 

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1979 Coupe Deville, 1995 FWB & 6 Other Non-Cadillacs.
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759 Posts
You and I are on the same road. I have a very similar list..

But I am curious about your engine rebuild. Why did you have it done, was it high miles? What kind of place did you have it done at? Are you satisfied with how it came out, and is there more power?

I had a Jasper engine put into my '84 Cutlass, and I can't count how many times I had to take it back.
The engine came out great but I had a good friend do it. He's been rebuilding motors for a Mercedes dealer for years so I trusted him. I rebuilt it because it had a wrist pin tap and I figuered might as well go the whole 9...
+ i meant to add
rear diff flush
and just dropped the fuel tank and replaced the fuel lines.
 

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1979 Coupe Deville, 1995 FWB & 6 Other Non-Cadillacs.
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BTW I've had the Rochester rebuilt twice and I would reccommend to anyone who does it...Make sure you get a diagram of how the vaccuum hoses are routed...This is the biggest achiles heel in these cars.
 

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1978 Cadillac Coupe Deville Le Cabriolet
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i actually have a 1978 deville almost identical except for i repainted it a darker blue and mine is a convertible. my deville has approx. 180000 miles in it also and i would like to see what you can do with yours. ive had trouble repairing the interior but the car looks incredible. ill have some pictures up soon.
 

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1993 Sedan DeVille, 1978 Coupe DeVille (Project Car)
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54 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Did you chop the roof off? Or is it a Aftermarket Convertible by Hess & Eindhardt?
 

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1978 Cadillac Coupe Deville Le Cabriolet
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335 Posts
My dad has had it since 78 and im not sure exactly what he did with it. im pretty sure he bought it as a convertible though. im actually on vacation right now but when i get back ill put some pictures up.
 

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1978 Cadillac Coupe Deville Le Cabriolet
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335 Posts
OK it is an Aftermarket Convertible by Hess and Eisenhardt. It's officially a 1978 Cadillac Coupe Deville Le Cabriolet. How does that change the value of the car??
 

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1993 Sedan DeVille, 1978 Coupe DeVille (Project Car)
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Discussion Starter #17
I would definitely say that it is worth more money. There were only a few hundred convertibles made aftermarket versus 100,??? thousand Coupe DeVilles made. Check out ebay for recent auctions.
 

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1978 Cadillac Coupe Deville Le Cabriolet
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The biggest issue it has right now is it occasionally doesn't start up after its been started a few times in a short amount of time. Also when its just sitting it often stalls out and has trouble starting again. However when its running and just driving it runs great. It has a few minor problems like the trunk button in the glove compartment doesn't work, the lights on the inside of the doors aren't working, one of the latches for the top broke and the air conditioning isn't great. The car has about 180,000 miles on it and i'm not trying to sell it but want to know how much its worth. The only thing im wondering about is there is a strange rattling underneath my left foot as i accelerate. I've had it checked at the gas station but im not sure what it is. Do any of have any idea??
 

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1989 Fleetwood Brougham d'Elegance|2018 Chevy Colorado Z71
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6,421 Posts
How long have you had this car? I might have seen it like a year ago.....
 

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1978 Cadillac Coupe Deville Le Cabriolet
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335 Posts
My dad has had it since 78' and he just gave it to me for my 17th birthday so i just started driving it often this summer
 
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