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Author Topic: Willow Run plant about to see the wrecking ball...?  (Read 1789 times)
69Z28-RS
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« on: April 29, 2013, 12:11:57 PM »

Interesting article from Hemmings re the Willow Run plant....  maybe we can all pool our money, but it, and convert it to a Camaro restoration facility?  Smiley

http://blog.hemmings.com/index.php/2013/04/29/willow-run-assembly-plant-faces-the-wrecking-ball/?refer=news
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« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2013, 01:26:36 PM »

Interesting article from Hemmings re the Willow Run plant....  maybe we can all pool our money, but it, and convert it to a Camaro restoration facility?  Smiley

http://blog.hemmings.com/index.php/2013/04/29/willow-run-assembly-plant-faces-the-wrecking-ball/?refer=news


There were TWO Willow Run plants - the subject of the Hemmings article is the huge plant Ford built to build B-24's during WWII, which later became the Kaiser-Frazer plant, then the home of Hydra-matic Division, then a GM Powertrain transmission plant, then closed; the other plant was the Chevrolet assembly plant across the highway where Corvairs, Novas, Citations, and Caprices were built, which closed in 1993. I started my GM career at Chevrolet-Willow Run in 1964, building the Corvair and Chevy II.
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KurtS
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« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2013, 10:59:33 PM »

I went thru the bomber plant several times (it's under 10 miles away) a couple of years ago when they auctioned off the transmission tooling.
Really cool to see where the engines and wings were assembled and met the main body. Looonnnnngggg plant. It make the sharp turn near final assembly so that the plant was all in the same county.
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« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2013, 11:31:48 PM »



[/quote]
 I started my GM career at Chevrolet-Willow Run in 1964, building the Corvair and Chevy II.
[/quote]

Gee, John, you probably built the car I got my license in - my Dad's '65 Corvair Corsa. Loved that car, leaking pushrod tubes and all - a lot of really good memories from it. Wish I had it sitting beside the 'Maros today.

Regards,
Steve
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« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2013, 12:19:13 AM »

 My brothers '66 Chevy II was built at Willow Run in Apr. of '66.  Here's a link to pic. of it on here.  It was originally solid color Turq. car with Fawn Interior.  And it was as V8, Auto. car.  Now sports a date correct 327 with a 350 Turbo. Trans.
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« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2013, 10:07:35 AM »

I went thru the bomber plant several times (it's under 10 miles away) a couple of years ago when they auctioned off the transmission tooling.
Really cool to see where the engines and wings were assembled and met the main body. Looonnnnngggg plant. It make the sharp turn near final assembly so that the plant was all in the same county.


My ex-father-in-law (Phil Cartwright) was the Works Manager (Plant Engineer) at Hydra-matic; he facilitized and tooled up the ex-Kaiser/Frazer plant for GM to build transmssions after the fire burned the Livonia plant to the ground in the 50's.
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« Reply #6 on: May 04, 2013, 09:54:55 PM »

My brothers '66 Chevy II was built at Willow Run in Apr. of '66.  Here's a link to pic. of it on here.  It was originally solid color Turq. car with Fawn Interior.  And it was as V8, Auto. car.  Now sports a date correct 327 with a 350 Turbo. Trans.
Just realized I forgot to post the link;
http://www.camaros.org/forum/index.php?topic=9770.msg71417#msg71417
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« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2015, 04:12:53 PM »

btw, the Yankee Air Musuem at Willow Run was able to buy the final assembly part of the Willow Run plant.
Pretty cool opportunity.
http://www.mlive.com/business/ann-arbor/index.ssf/2014/11/nonprofit_award_yankee_air_mus.html
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« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2015, 09:09:50 PM »

Interesting article from Hemmings re the Willow Run plant....  maybe we can all pool our money, but it, and convert it to a Camaro restoration facility?  Smiley

http://blog.hemmings.com/index.php/2013/04/29/willow-run-assembly-plant-faces-the-wrecking-ball/?refer=news


There were TWO Willow Run plants - the subject of the Hemmings article is the huge plant Ford built to build B-24's during WWII, which later became the Kaiser-Frazer plant, then the home of Hydra-matic Division, then a GM Powertrain transmission plant, then closed; the other plant was the Chevrolet assembly plant across the highway where Corvairs, Novas, Citations, and Caprices were built, which closed in 1993. I started my GM career at Chevrolet-Willow Run in 1964, building the Corvair and Chevy II.

I thought The Citations were built at Tarrytown.
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« Reply #9 on: January 01, 2015, 11:47:06 PM »

I know they were built in WR. I don't know if Tarrytown also built X-bodies.
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« Reply #10 on: January 02, 2015, 01:57:30 PM »

I thought The Citations were built at Tarrytown.

We built the Citation "X"-body at Willow Run, Tarrytown, and Oklahoma City (each plant also built either the Buick Skylark,, Pontiac Phoenix, or Oldsmobile Omega).  Tarrytown was the only plant that didn't have a full immersion/dip ELPO prime system - they just sprayed primer, and their "X"-cars rusted out first.  :-(
« Last Edit: January 02, 2015, 02:35:03 PM by JohnZ » Logged

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« Reply #11 on: January 02, 2015, 02:18:20 PM »

We built the Citation "X"-body at Willow Run, Tarrytown, and Oklahoma City (each plant also built either the Buick Skylark,, Pontiac Phoenix, or Oldsmobile whateveritwas).

Oldsmobile Omega!  Wink



Paul
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JohnZ
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« Reply #12 on: January 02, 2015, 02:35:38 PM »

We built the Citation "X"-body at Willow Run, Tarrytown, and Oklahoma City (each plant also built either the Buick Skylark,, Pontiac Phoenix, or Oldsmobile whateveritwas).

Oldsmobile Omega!  Wink





Paul

Thanks - I edited my original post.  :-)
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« Reply #13 on: January 02, 2015, 06:08:38 PM »

I had a Phoenix ($450!) and a Citation.  Great cars, IMO. And living in the north, FWD was a big benefit as was the room in a 4-door hatch. 
I always wanted one of the X11 or Phoenix SX versions - they were fast in their day.
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« Reply #14 on: January 02, 2015, 06:55:03 PM »

I bought an '81 Citation new and had Ziebart undercoating put on it. All that did was delay the inevitable; by the time I unloaded it in '87 even the hood had rust holes. Went from bad to worse as I then bought a used '85 Pontiac 6000 STE, the worst POS I ever owned. In two years I replaced the steering rack twice, fuel pump, oil pump, coil, ignition module, rear calipers. I never did fix the power antenna or power locks. Even the radio blew out. Had the A/C recharged several times. I'd like to think they have improved the quality but my BIL's 2003 Impala isn't much better.

GM chased away a lot of customers with the junk they built in those days.
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