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Thread: A long lasting Valentine

  1. #1

    Default A long lasting Valentine

    It was 35 years ago today, February 14, 1973, that I became the very proud owner of "gray". At the time, there was a very reputable dealer in Columbus who specialized in GM factory executive's cars and gray came from the General Motors Technical Center in Warren, Michigan.

    While I was considering ordering a new '73 Centurion, I really preferred the
    '72s and I felt gray was just too good to pass up and I can say that decision proved to be correct and the right one for me.

    Another '72 Centurion 4 door hardtop had also received serious consideration. It was Champagne Gold with Black vinyl roof and Sandalwood cloth interior and was a VERY highly optioned car. However, I couldn't make the deal with Len Immke Buick and it just didn't happen. While that car might have made me equally happy, the car couldn't have been any better than gray has been. It has been quite a ride and hope that we've both got some miles left.
    Bob Alberini BCA 3038
    Columbus, OH
    Centurion owner since 1973

  2. #2
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    Bob, your Centurion is certainly one of the finest examples still in existence, and it was a special treat for me to see this one in 1983, 1988, and 2003 at the Buick Nationals. Thanks for preserving "Gray" so beautifully for so many years.

    I hope Keith won't mind that I post some of his photos, just so everyone here can remember clearly the car we're talking about. Keith, your photos of Bob's car are superb!





    Brian Laurance, BCA # 5168
    A Centurion driver since December, 1970

    1971 Centurion Formal Coupe

  3. #3
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    Bob, your story today reminded me of something you recently posted on the forum here.

    You recalled that you had first seen a '72 Centurion 4-door hardtop during the fall of '71 at Bob Daniels Buick in Columbus. Do you remember the color scheme of that first '72?
    Brian Laurance, BCA # 5168
    A Centurion driver since December, 1970

    1971 Centurion Formal Coupe

  4. #4

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    No, Brian, I have no recollection of it whatsoever! It was Nutmeg with a Sandalwood vinyl roof and Sandalwood cloth interior. The VIN was 4P39W2Y103004 and it was well equipped. You'll note the high performance 455, power seat, power windows, AM Stereo 8 track, tilt, cruise, tinted glass, power locks, accessory group, cornering lights, front lamp monitors, speed alert and trip set, fingertip windshield washer control, custom rear body moldings, black accent stripe, super deluxe wheel covers, bumper guards, door edge guards, protective side molding, whitewall tires and Automatic Climate Control Air Conditioning. Was it any wonder I got hooked so early?
    Bob Alberini BCA 3038
    Columbus, OH
    Centurion owner since 1973

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    Wow, Bob! I should have known that you would have a comprehensive answer for me!

    I love the Nutmeg '72's, and this one sure sounds like it was a beauty. And it seems that we rarely saw the Centurions with the Super Deluxe wheelcovers.

    The memory of this one probably helped motivate you and your dad to buy his '72 Centurion later. This was another spectacular car that I had the pleasure of driving when I attended the '83 National in Columbus.





    Brian Laurance, BCA # 5168
    A Centurion driver since December, 1970

    1971 Centurion Formal Coupe

  6. #6
    My3buicks Guest

    Default ; )

    One of the nicest Centurions out there for sure - after all, there is some reason Collectible Automobile chose it to feature and start off their article of the full size 71-76 Buicks. Most collector cars only wish to find such a good home.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Centurion View Post
    ... ... Keith, your photos of Bob's car are superb!
    Thatīs right - very nice pictures, Keith ! And the first one comes out better than in the calendar. Most I like the 2nd photo. Itīs a wonderful car !

    Also the next 4-door HT looks good. Could you change those pictures to higher data volume also, Brian, so that we could let print them?
    ________________
    Rolf

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    Sorry, Rolf. The photos of the Nutmeg '72 were taken by Bob about 25 years ago. I sent my original prints to Adam for the registry, and these are his scans of those old photos. We're unable to improve upon the photos already posted.
    Brian Laurance, BCA # 5168
    A Centurion driver since December, 1970

    1971 Centurion Formal Coupe

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    Quote Originally Posted by Centurion View Post
    Sorry, Rolf. The photos of the Nutmeg '72 were taken by Bob about 25 years ago. I sent my original prints to Adam for the registry, and these are his scans of those old photos. We're unable to improve upon the photos already posted.
    Okay, Brian, thanks for the info. !
    ____________
    Rolf

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Alberini View Post
    It was 35 years ago today, February 14, 1973, that I became the very proud owner of "gray". At the time, there was a very reputable dealer in Columbus who specialized in GM factory executive's cars and gray came from the General Motors Technical Center in Warren, Michigan.

    While I was considering ordering a new '73 Centurion, I really preferred the
    '72s and I felt gray was just too good to pass up and I can say that decision proved to be correct and the right one for me.

    Another '72 Centurion 4 door hardtop had also received serious consideration. It was Champagne Gold with Black vinyl roof and Sandalwood cloth interior and was a VERY highly optioned car. However, I couldn't make the deal with Len Immke Buick and it just didn't happen. While that car might have made me equally happy, the car couldn't have been any better than gray has been. It has been quite a ride and hope that we've both got some miles left.
    hi bob, were always so busy talking about our own cars, and your always so busy helping us. we never hear enough about your cars, gray is a real beauty to say the least.is she all original, and how many miles has she traveled. i love that cloth interior, isnt it something how are car dates always stay with us. like birthdays and other special occasions!i wanted to tell you about a 1974 electra limited coupe i am considering buying ,give me your take on the 74s, its a 39,000 mile original, burgundy with a full white vinyl top, burgundy crushed velour(id rather have vinyl) interior, totally loaded, chrome plated wheels, it is owned by columbia buick in mass.i saw it on ebay,kinda wet my pants. the car is totally original except the rear fillers were replaced. it was a original owner car until the dealer purchased it.title to prove.i love 71 thru 76 electras, what do you think of 74s, be frank . investment wise probably not the smartest, but i love the car. thank god it doesnt have the padded landau with small quarter windows,even more disco than the velour interior.if it did have the top, probably wouldnt have went to see it.this dealer is wild, they have a dozen or so classic buicks for sale at all times,. and they do restorations.its a huge dealer near boston, sell buick ,pont ,gmc.not one centurion in the bunch, what can we expect, were a rare bunch. phil

  11. #11
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    After all those years that you owned it, did you repainted it or restored it?

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    In response to Phil's post regarding the 1971 - 1976 Electra 225's, are you aware that Bob also owns this 11,000-mile 1972 Electra 225 Limited?

    my3buicks receives the photo credit -- once again!







    I'm certain that Bob will have some input for you regarding the '74 Electra 225.

    Phil, do you have the December, 2007 issue of "Collectible Automobile" magazine? You will see that Rob Billott (if I'm remembering the name correctly) owns a '74 Electra 225 2-door hardtop. I like that the '74 Electra 225's maintained the '71 - '73 roofline style, prior to the roofline changes of '75 and ''76.



    Rob has a huge collection of original Electra 225's, with most cars being from the 1973 - 1976 period. Please send me a private message if you would like his e-mail address. He may be able to provide some input about the car you're considering.

    Brian Laurance, BCA # 5168
    A Centurion driver since December, 1970

    1971 Centurion Formal Coupe

  13. #13
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    Default

    You make me drool.

  14. #14
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    Two and a half years ago, we were on our way to the BCA national meet in Batavia, NY. We had a caravan of 4 cars, and were on our second day of travel. I remember this grey 72 four door buzzing by us at 70mph somewhere in Pennsylvania I made a quick wave to him and continued on my way. I later found out that they guy who buzzed us was Bob Alberini

    I was in my 71 convertible (which Rolf now owns) wanted to catch up with him, but knew he would be in the same destination as us...plus, one of the cars in the caravan would only run about 60-63mph
    Adam Martin
    BPG# 1358
    BCA# 39765
    1970 Buick Skylark Custom 455 Coupe


  15. #15

    Default

    I have to send a huge THANK YOU to all of you for your kind comments. My intention was just to share the purchase story with you but you took it a lot further and you made such kind and generous comments. You made my day!

    Phil I have sent you a p/m regarding the '74 so check your mail box. Adam, we hadn't quite made it to Cleveland when I spied the St. Louis caravan and what a beautiful site it was. Of course, I knew who I was passing when I saw that white '71 convertible in the group.

    Gray is a very original car and has not been restored or repainted and the mileage now stands just under 33k. The car has never seen daily service and has been pretty much pampered from the time that I made the purchase because I planned even then to try to make it a lifetime commitment and it has turned out to be just that. It remains a thrill to slide behind the wheel whenever I do so and the beauty, comfort and styling light my fire as much today as when I spotted the first new 72 Centurion on the back lot of Bob Daniels Buick.

    I also want to let you folks know that Keith is not only responsible for the great photos but the equally great detailing. While I think I can do the car just fine, he always insists doing the detailing and his work is magnificent. He really makes gray look as good as is possible.
    Bob Alberini BCA 3038
    Columbus, OH
    Centurion owner since 1973

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    Angry theres nothing like family!

    hi bob, thanks very much for the input, your 72 electra is unreal, 11,000 miles!good god! yes they are original once and only once,i love all buicks restored or not. i just seem to always wind up with originals, as you know thats no easy feat.my mom had a 72 electra custom coupe and my aunt had a 71 custom coupe, my mom had hers until 1975,and it was replaced with a maroon electra custom coupe ,my aunt had hers until 1985! it was in excellent condition,77,000 miles, i pestered the s--- out of her to let me have it, but my cousin debbie had dibbs on it ,she learned to drive on it in 1973. i knew what was in store for it since she pulverized every car she ever had, sure enough 3 monthes later she ran it hot and it overheated after she probably drove it for hours,needless to say it bit the dust.than they offered it to me! nice! i said noooo thanks, and off to the crusher it went.i was so pissed i didnt even care.it still is brought up occasionally, and now my aunt says , 'i should have given it you" . bless her heart!

  17. #17
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    Default red 72 on craigs list

    Quote Originally Posted by My3buicks View Post
    One of the nicest Centurions out there for sure - after all, there is some reason Collectible Automobile chose it to feature and start off their article of the full size 71-76 Buicks. Most collector cars only wish to find such a good home.
    hi keith, i spoke to the owner of the red 72 on craigs list, a very nice up front guy. went into explicit detail on the car. its on its second repaint, he says they did a decent job on it , but went into detail on the fact that the paint was thick and a bit wavy, no orange peel , but thick, says someone told him it could use a wet sanding. who knows! he claims the car does not have bondo in it,who knows!interor has no tears, but needs a good cleaning. chrome is driver quality with pits. top is good with either motor issues or bow problems. a little vague in that department.all trunk cardboard is gone .not my cup o tea! can be a possible driver, but i know youre like me and that wont do.i wont even remotely entertain a re_do. not for any price. although,again, for a driver, it may work for someone else. mileage wasnt high,mid 80s,as i recall.he called it a 10 footer , anytime someone uses that,my armpit hairs stand up. add 20 more feet to that is my gut feeling when i hear that.probably a steal for half the money. my cars are 1 inchers.ps, you do a beautiful job detailing as i see on bobs cars, what do you use to dress the vinyl tops, i dont use anything anymore since the turtle wax products went off the market. i even bought it directly from turtle wax after they pulled it from the stores years ago. even found some cans at flea markets years ago. let me know, phil

  18. #18
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    Default Outstanding photos !

    Once more I have to say that the photos of "Gray" are outstanding ! The play of light and shadow with the lines of the car, the sparkling reflexes everywhere, the green background and the perspective make it excellent !

    Keith, where have you learned taking such photos or are you artist in this ability by birth ? Guess no business photographer of a cars magazine could do it better.

    I love those pictures and thatīs why I say: please show us some more of your Centurion photos ! Perhaps you have some special pictures of your orange and of your former red car also; donīt hesitate to share them with us.
    ____________
    Rolf

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    God, I love this forum...... you all are just great. I am sitting here at my desk with a big STUPID smile on my face just reading this stuff! Classy bunch of guys... Thanks for sharing.

    And Keith, I am with Phil - I fancy myself as a pretty good detailer, but it looks like you've gone to the next level. What products do you use? Glass, tires, rubber, paint, chrome... etc.

    Bob - great looking car(s). Congratulations for sticking to your plan and making this a life time commitment.
    Steve
    72 Buick Centurion Convertible - Current (Purchased in 2007)
    71 Buick Skylark Convertible - (mistakenly sold when I thought it was time to "grow-up"!)
    02 GMC Yukon XL - Daily Driver
    00 Jeep Wrangler - My "other fun" car...

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by dewbers View Post
    God, I love this forum...... you all are just great. I am sitting here at my desk with a big STUPID smile on my face just reading this stuff! Classy bunch of guys... Thanks for sharing.

    And Keith, I am with Phil - I fancy myself as a pretty good detailer, but it looks like you've gone to the next level. What products do you use? Glass, tires, rubber, paint, chrome... etc.

    Bob - great looking car(s). Congratulations for sticking to your plan and making this a life time commitment.
    well, steve your right ,it is so refreshing to see such a bunch of honest, like it or not, people who are not afraid to tell it like it is.never thought in my wildest dreams that i would enjoy a website as much as this one, im not a computer person, but i really look forward to this!just a great bunch of guys, no attitude ,no baloney,no bondo!phil

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