BF AUCTION: 1936 Buick Special

Asking: $5,000Make Offer

We have been working with Reader Don L to clear out the remaining cars in his collection. We found a new home for his Corvette Kiddie ride and are still looking for a good home for his Packard, so be sure to check it out here. The next one that needs to go is this 1936 Buick Special and boy does it have a cool look to it! So, if you’d love to give this barn find a new home, be sure to bid. You can find it in Junction City, Kansas with a clear title. And if you have any questions about it, feel free to leave them in the comments below.

This Buick has been in Don’s barn for a long time, as you can tell by the layer of dust. His father purchased it back in the 1960s, drove it to the barn and that’s where it’s stayed ever since. It will take some work to get it looking its best, but that is the fun part of a barn find. Thankfully, all the brightwork is present and looks to be in decent shape. It’s amazing to think that this was Buick’s entry-level car with a big shiny grille like that! I also love that it is wearing an original 1936 Kansas license plate, you really don’t see that often.

A look at the interior reveals a highly original car that needs some TLC. Everything appears to be present and accounted for, but then again there wasn’t much there to begin with. You have a steering wheel, one large gauge in front of the driver, a clock in front of the passenger, some lovely trim, a shifter, a heater and a pair of visors. While basic, it has everything you really need in a car! It looks like there is some water staining on the upholstery, but some detailing should clean it up nicely. Just think of how comfortable this one would be, even with the whole family loaded up in it.

The car has some dents and road rash, but Don believes the car to be very sound throughout. He is confident that the car has never been restored and that it is in all original condition. Where it is positioned in the barn is proving to make it a challenge to photograph, but he is happy to answer any questions you might have.

Don really wants to see this Buick go to a good home. It looks like a great find and while it definitely needs work, it would be a cool old car to cruise around in. The 233 cui inline-8 offers just 93 horsepower but is one smooth engine. He hasn’t attempted to start this one, so mechanically it’s a bit of a mystery, but it ran when it was parked. If you’ve been on the hunt for an art deco classic, this one is definitely worth a look. Feel free to leave any questions below or email us at and we will put you in touch with Don. And don’t forget to cast your highest bid below!

  • Location: Junction City, Kansas
  • Title Status: Clean
  • VIN: 43054019

Bid On This Vehicle

High Bid: $3,000 (Reserve Not Met)
Make An Offer
Ended: Dec 13, 2019 4:00pm MDT
Top Bidder: garm
Buyer Premium: 5%
    garm bid $3,000.00Dec 13, 2019 6:24am
    Buickman37 bid $2,000.00Dec 13, 2019 2:14am
  • dandyduct  
    dandyduct bid $1,450.00Dec 12, 2019 9:12pm
  • bid $1,250.00Dec 10, 2019 4:43pm

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  1. CFJ

    No driver’s side windshield glass?

  2. Jeff Miller

    I’m very interested in seeing what this one fetches. I had a 4 door like this a couple of decades ago that was in similar shape. I dragged it around for too long before I realized I didn’t have the time or space to bring it back to life. I ended up swapping that 4 door for a 2 door Victoria Canadian (McGlaughlin) driver version. My car is now mechanically sound along with improvements to brakes and electrics but otherwise largely original. At some point I’ll pass it on but in the meantime watching this one should help me know what people might pay for such a beauty.

    Good luck with the auction and yes, I hope this one goes to a good owner that has the skills, time, and place to bring it back to life.

    Like 2
  3. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry Member

    Now I turn my clock back to the 50’s. My dad and older brothers drove Buicks from the 30’s. A couple 38’s 39’s 40’s and a 42 road master, but I don’t recall a 36. My dad did have a 35 Oldsmobile, and my first car was a 35 Chevy. We lived in the country with 120 acres of land so we could have as many cars as we wanted, most were driven til they died then parked on a hill on the farm where they remained until my dad sold the farm in the mid 70’s.
    I’d love to get this car, but at 72 with a invalid wife to care for its all I can do to keep my 64 Buick Riviera up and running, which I’m in the process of replacing the motor mounts at this time, one bolt at a time.
    God bless America

    Like 4
  4. Don Dyer

    What is the reserve set at on this 1936 Buick?

  5. Jerrold berg

    Would be a beautiful car to have. Not far away either.

  6. TimM

    Beautiful car!!! Should be interesting to see what it sells for!!!

  7. Jeff Miller

    Something unique about the 1936 Buicks is that they are the last to have wood instead of steel interior framing. I hadn’t thought much about this until I was talking with a guy that had a beautifully restored one that had been restored through 3 generations of his family.

    His most insightful comment came when he talked about how grandpa was a meticulous wood worker that created new parts for most of the car. When grandpa’s eyesight and hands started to fail there were only a few wood parts left that needed to be recreated. Grandpa helped with those parts but ultimately others had to finish them to a standard not quite up to grandpas. The result was a very slight issue with one of the doors not aligning and closing just right.

    If you look at Buicks from the mid to late 30s you will see a preponderance of them from 37 well into the 40s but finding a 36 is much more rare. I believe it is the wood that is the issue. Luckily, this car looks like it is sitting well so hopefully the wood is in great shape.

    Like 2
  8. Jeff Miller

    The special has the smaller but beautiful 236 straight 8 engine mated to a 3 speed transmission and straight cut gears. This thing was designed for a time where torque was necessary and can with a bit of encouragement haul the car from stop to speed in top gear; quite impressive. The special has very low gearing which made me nervous about driving much above 50 mph even though Buick claimed a top speed somewhere around 80 in the day. A common change was to swap the century rear end into these cars so that they can cruise a bit faster without stressing the engine too much. My McGlaughlin has this modification and although I have pushed it to 75mph it really feels at home cruising country roads at 50 to 55.

    Thinking about the wood, I’d pay special attention to the area under the center post of the rear window, the bottom of the back doors, and the area on the rear fenders just below the windows and down to the running boards. Also look to make sure the doors hang well, don’t twist, and that the windows roll without issue. These were all problem areas on my first Buick and to a lesser extent on my current McGlaughlin.

    Like 1
  9. Jeff Miller

    This Buick comes nicely appointed with optional spoke steering wheel, heater and glove box clock. Since there are keys in the steering wheel lock I have to believe that still works as well.

    The fender lamps are correct and unique to the 36. After 36 the divider runs down the horizontal section of the lamp instead of vertical like these. These lamps were options on the early production cars but became standard later along with some additional changes to the lighting circuits. The early buicks had a parking lamp in the headlight but in the later cars that lamp was replaced by lighting these fender lights. I love the fender lights; they really set the 36 apart from later years as well as the other similar looking GM cars from 36.

    The interior does look original or at least a very good reproduction. It is hard to see but there is stitching on the door panels that is supposedly homage to the empire state building. Also, that one big instrument is actually a composite of speedometer, odometer, fuel gauge, water temp, oil pressure, alternator, and high beam indicator.

    Another interesting thing about the 36 is that it was a huge seller for Buick that helped Buick recover from the depression.

    Like 4
    • Sal

      I agree, Jeff.
      I love those fender lamps.

      I used a little wire, a switch, and some ingenuity to wire up a toggle switch on my car so that I can either have parking lights or use them as front blinkers.

      Hope this car finds a nice home.

      Like 1
  10. patrick darrow

    To Bad its so far away. Or, i would make that Car..MINE! :(

  11. garm

    Hey Don, I bought the grey Sunbeam Imp back at the beginning. Cool to see another one I want come up!

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