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Gil O

1931 Chevy 5 window

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Here's my 1st post...would like to say Thanks to everyone on this great site. Purchased a 1931 Chevrolet 5 window coupe that looks to be in very restorable condition & near original. All the wood is in good shape, with the exception of the roof which will need to be replaced. A true barn find that has the original motor that runs. Car is primered and all interior will need to be redone. This car will need some love but its all there. I guess my question is, will the car be worth more original or should I have fun with it and hot rod? I just cant see taking all these original parts out...but I dont want to get over my head. Your input is greatly appreciated.

-Gil O from Cali

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Before I get a bunch of responses that say why change it to a hot rod...I really want to keep it original but money talks and BS walks...Maybe I should just keep it as is & drive her...

-Gil

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If you're looking for positive support on making a hot rod out of a relatively rare car, you're definitely in the wrong place. This forum is based on original antique automobiles.

The 31 Chevy is a good car, plenty of power in a 6 cylinder engine, nice styling. You state "or should I have fun with it and hot rod." I had fun for many years with my 31 Chevy tudor sedan, and it was all original. To me, the fun of the antique cars is to drive them as they were then, with all their quirks and such.

Good luck, nice find.

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Gil

If you want to build a street rod sell the 31 and go buy a project that needs finished. I have built street rods and they cost about the same or more than to restore. when your done building your hot rod you have a small block chevy with an automatic trans just like all the other hot rods. I enjoy my original cars much more than any street rods i ever built. It seems when you built a hot rod that people look for the flaws. the original people just like to look at and talk about. Well thats my two cents worth

Thanks

Oscar

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It will be far more valuable original. It will also be easier and cheaper to fix. There is a lot of wrong information on this subject passed around by people who have never done what they are purporting to advise on, and don't know what they are talking about.

Your car is a simple and popular design. Parts are available. If it runs there is a good chance it needs only minor repairs. Far easier and cheaper than hot rodding it, and by keeping it original it will only grow more valuable.

For a good object lesson think of this. What about some poor sap who spent $50,000 hot rodding a car like yours in the 1990s and is now stuck with a car stripped of its original parts, with gray tweed upholstered Toyota seats, teal paint with a magenta flash, Chev 350 V8 and 3 speed auto, 1974 Mustang II suspension,and Boyd Coddington wheels. Compared to someone who spent $20,000 to restore one completely original. Who has made money and who is going to take a bath?

Edited by Rusty_OToole (see edit history)

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If money really talks you'd be better off doing nothing to the car and selling it as is. Rod or restore, you are unlikely to break even or turn a profit either way.

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Thank You all for your responses...you've all have really made it too easy to decide. Deep down I knew that I wanted to keep this beauty as close to original as possible. I've had cars from the 60's but nothing like this one.

Rusty- These hot rods you're speaking of are a dime a dozen...which is why I think deep down inside I knew the correct decision for me is to go original.

I guess I figured it would be more expensive to keep it original than to put a 350 & coddington wheels... I have some pic's but I need to figure out how to upload.

Thanks again,

-Gil

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CHEAPER to keep it original unless it is a total pail. By that I mean, a wreck with half the parts missing and the fenders rusted thru and beat right off it. Then it would be a toss up.

Example: Complete body and paint in original plain enamel finish, $5000. Custom paint job in the latest style, $20,000 and up.

Rebuild original engine, $2500. Replace with Chev 350 crate motor, which requires new mounts, new transmission, new rear axle, shifter, rad etc etc, $10,000.

Sandblast and paint original wheels, new tires in original size, $1000. 26" Dub wheels and rubber band tires, $5000

Rebuild original front suspension, $750. Replace with repro of 1970 Pinto, $3500.

Etc etc etc etc

Edited by Rusty_OToole (see edit history)

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