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Old 03-07-2013, 07:28 PM   #1
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Default restoring an old car

the male in me is telling me I need to restore an old car before I die

buying something dirt cheap like this:




and taking it to this:

http://goodmanreed.com/inventory/196...0se-cabriolet/



(they are different models I know)

I know it is a lots of work and money, but when I get some free time I would like to restore a classic Mercedes some day.

anyone ever restore a classic car?...or want to one day?
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Old 03-07-2013, 07:45 PM   #2
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Default Re: restoring an old car

I've done quite a few. I'm more into retromodding classics now(taking a previously crap model with an exterior design that I'm interested in, and implanting newer and more reliable and overall better set of mechanicals and electronics). And I also agree, restoring a car is something every "man" should experience.

I did a few Mopars(67 cuda, 69 charger, 72 roadrunner, 73 roadrunner), a 69 camaro, a 73 911, and a 71 torino as full restores. I did a 82 Lynx retromod with a 2.3 duratec, a skybird with a 3.8, and right now I'm hunting down a first gen honda accord, and I'll plan the retro mod once I get my measurements.
Also, my first 15 cars were from salvage yards. I didn't buy a brand new car until the mid 90s. LOL

Nice choice. I was thinking of doing something similar at one point, and building up an OM603 diesel for it.

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Old 03-07-2013, 09:37 PM   #3
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Default Re: restoring an old car

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crystallas
I've done quite a few. I'm more into retromodding classics now(taking a previously crap model with an exterior design that I'm interested in, and implanting newer and more reliable and overall better set of mechanicals and electronics). And I also agree, restoring a car is something every "man" should experience.

I did a few Mopars(67 cuda, 69 charger, 72 roadrunner, 73 roadrunner), a 69 camaro, a 73 911, and a 71 torino as full restores. I did a 82 Lynx retromod with a 2.3 duratec, a skybird with a 3.8, and right now I'm hunting down a first gen honda accord, and I'll plan the retro mod once I get my measurements.
Also, my first 15 cars were from salvage yards. I didn't buy a brand new car until the mid 90s. LOL

Nice choice. I was thinking of doing something similar at one point, and building up an OM603 diesel for it.
Have you ever restored a Euro Import?...I imagine it is a bit more difficult and expensive
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Old 03-07-2013, 11:24 PM   #4
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Default Re: restoring an old car

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crystallas
I've done quite a few. I'm more into retromodding classics now(taking a previously crap model with an exterior design that I'm interested in, and implanting newer and more reliable and overall better set of mechanicals and electronics). And I also agree, restoring a car is something every "man" should experience.

I did a few Mopars(67 cuda, 69 charger, 72 roadrunner, 73 roadrunner), a 69 camaro, a 73 911, and a 71 torino as full restores. I did a 82 Lynx retromod with a 2.3 duratec, a skybird with a 3.8, and right now I'm hunting down a first gen honda accord, and I'll plan the retro mod once I get my measurements.
Also, my first 15 cars were from salvage yards. I didn't buy a brand new car until the mid 90s. LOL

Nice choice. I was thinking of doing something similar at one point, and building up an OM603 diesel for it.

Restore a Continental for me and I will buy it. Convertible and black. I have always want to do this Lincoln but I have no time. Too busy trying to make money.

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Old 03-07-2013, 11:33 PM   #5
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Default Re: restoring an old car

Im not really into it, but I helped my dad and brother restore my bro's 1960 Cadillac. Beautiful car. Also helped with my dads, 1936 caddy, but that wasnt a complete restore. Its a huge time and money sink, so be careful. Come to think of it, I have tinkered (not a full restore outside of the 60) on a 76 el dorado convertible, 1974? cadillac limo, 1971? tbird (one of the ones with suicide doors) and a couple of others in terms of collector cars. Really, you have to have the passion for it as well as the expertise (or access to it). My bros 60 has an air suspension (pretty rare) that was incredibly fickle and took months of ****ing with to get it right. Of course, now its sweet, with a smooth ride and a dash switch that can raise and lower the car.

You are better off throwing your money down g strings and up your nose IMO. zing
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Old 03-07-2013, 11:42 PM   #6
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Default Re: restoring an old car

Quote:
Originally Posted by boozehound
Im not really into it, but I helped my dad and brother restore my bro's 1960 Cadillac. Beautiful car. Also helped with my dads, 1936 caddy, but that wasnt a complete restore. Its a huge time and money sink, so be careful. Come to think of it, I have tinkered (not a full restore outside of the 60) on a 76 el dorado convertible, 1974? cadillac limo, 1971? tbird (one of the ones with suicide doors) and a couple of others in terms of collector cars. Really, you have to have the passion for it as well as the expertise (or access to it). My bros 60 has an air suspension (pretty rare) that was incredibly fickle and took months of ****ing with to get it right. Of course, now its sweet, with a smooth ride and a dash switch that can raise and lower the car.

You are better off throwing your money down g strings and up your nose IMO. zing

How hard can it be?

Source parts, clean up parts and install. The hard stuff you just pay someone to do it.

Money is a hard part too.
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Old 03-07-2013, 11:57 PM   #7
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Default Re: restoring an old car

A. Buy something you'll want to keep because you'll pour in more money than you'll ever sell it for.

B. Buy something you can actually get parts for, do some research before hand, there's projects scattered from Malibu to Nantucket that people started only to find that they just don't make certain parts anymore which means you have to make them yourself or pony up the big cash to have somebody else do it.

C. Speaking of projects started and unfinished. You can usually find a few of those around for sale.

D. Don't bite off more than you can chew, be realistic about your knowledge of the various aspects of restoration
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Old 03-08-2013, 12:01 AM   #8
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Default Re: restoring an old car

Quote:
Originally Posted by 9erempiree
How hard can it be?

Source parts, clean up parts and install. The hard stuff you just pay someone to do it.

Money is a hard part too.
well, parts can be hard for some of these (for example, the air suspension, rare in its day and only available for a handful of years - I dont recall the details, was ridiculous). And, yeah, you can get someone else to rebuild the engine/etc., but then whats the point?

As GTS says, you will spend more than you will ever sell it for (unless its something really crazy).
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Old 03-08-2013, 02:38 AM   #9
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Default Re: restoring an old car

Quote:
Originally Posted by -p.tiddy-
Have you ever restored a Euro Import?...I imagine it is a bit more difficult and expensive

Depends on what. The more interchangeable parts, obviously, the easier it will be. A lot of imports also use similar or identical chassis codes as something found in the domestic market. So if that is your goal, the first thing you would do is apply the breakdown, sort it out to see what components are shared, and then you have an excellent starting point.

When I say apply the breakdown. I'll share the basics of my personal system.

First you want to break everything into it's categories. Engine will be the biggest priority, mainly because you can find shops with varying experience and knowledge that are capable of the fab work with the chassis and body. If you do this stuff yourself. Which, if you are doing the whole thing yourself, it's still handy to have a non-internet person to feed off of, for advise.

But in your case, I would suggest usually do something along the lines of Engine, chassis, suspension, transmission, interior parts, in that order. Find all of the compatible vehicles that you can look to for parts.

Things like brakes, suspension, electrics(well, aside from what has to work with the interior you ultimately want), ignition, mounts, cooling+radiator, upholstery and bodywork are at the mercy of the craftsman anyways and you can do all of that yourself without needing to find exact parts. Of course, I say that wish a disclaimer, because if you want to make it a full numbers matching car, as it was from the showroom floor, everything becomes a great challenge.

Once you have assessed your goals, and where to go about getting parts, you can start to break down the vehicle and actually see WHAT you need. Then sort what you need and what you want, budget, grab the parts, get the tools, and pull that engine out(the whole thing, don't try and rebuild and rewire it IN the bay).

Also, measure twice, cut once. That means make sure you have the necessary information. Get help when needed. You don't want to lose a limb or break expensive parts because you feel like this is your experiment. You will quickly get discouraged by unbolting things willy-nilly.
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Old 03-08-2013, 03:07 AM   #10
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Default Re: restoring an old car

Just don't get stuck to the point where it's sitting in your garage or driveway for years on out.

I think the most important thing, like I said I have never done this and a buddy of mine is doing a 70's truck and it has gone over 3 years, is that you set a timetable and limit.

Eventually, if it's been so long, give up. I would first budget and source the necessary means to finish the job.

How much is it going to cost?

When is the expected finished project? It comes to a point when the honeymoon period is over. Even after finishing the project, it may not seem like it's worth it.
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Old 03-08-2013, 03:17 AM   #11
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Default Re: restoring an old car

Well, you have to enter a project car(ESPECIALLY your first) with the idea that it will take you about 5 years to complete.

My first car was a smashed up 82 Diplomat. It wasn't very old, had less than 7k miles on it and most of the work was rebuilding the transmission and bodywork. I started the project in the winter, and finished it by spring. The crazy thing that I remember from it, was replacing the hood. I just said, to hell with it, and made one from fiberglass. So it was my first fiberglassing experience and it actually turned out. But this was a much boxier car, so it was incredibly simple.


(not my car, but this is exactly what it looked like, trim, color but with full hubcaps).
But I got rid of it that summer(made a quick buck) and started another project. I didn't really care for it as a teenager.
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Old 03-08-2013, 03:26 AM   #12
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Default Re: restoring an old car

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crystallas
But I got rid of it that summer(made a quick buck) and started another project. I didn't really care for it as a teenager.

Basically what I meant by the honeymoon phase would be over. You go into the project thinking that it would be something you like when it was done but didn't care for it.

I think the same goes for even a Continental that I like or an old BMW, eventually the restoration would make you hate it.
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Old 03-08-2013, 11:58 AM   #13
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Default Re: restoring an old car

thanks for all the input fellas...this isn't something I can do at the moment unfortunately but later on when I have more time on my hands I want to do this.

the passion is def there for me, I have been into cars of all types my entire life. For over the past decade I have been a Mercedes enthusiast, and if somehow I was ever rich I would pull a Jay Leno and start a Benz collection.

Anytime those Barrett-Jackson auto auctions come on TV I am watching, love those.


I don't know what I'm doing really at all when it comes to this, but does anyone their first time around? Everyone has to start somewhere right? I am sure that for everyone who has restored an older car for the first time it was a huge learning process.
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Old 03-08-2013, 12:04 PM   #14
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Default Re: restoring an old car

my dream restore job:








will never happen though, because that Gullwing is so rare and sought after they go for ridiculous prices...

this one is selling for $1.5 million :

http://www.hemmings.com/classifieds/...l/1520174.html
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Old 03-08-2013, 01:02 PM   #15
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Default Re: restoring an old car

Maybe you'll find a Gullwing in a barn
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