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How do we stop the "hoarding" of old cars?


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One area of frustration I've had in the past few years in the "hoarding" of antique cars.<P>I'd love to buy a "horseless carriage", and have exhausted the car opportunities in Tucson. There is a tight group of HC enthusiasts and they all have multiple cars. When they do sell them they seem to stay "in the family".<P>I did join the club, but i'm kind of a bastard child cause i dont own a pre-16 automobile. It's a bit of a catch-22 situation. I can't become part of the family until i have a car, but i can get a car until I become part of the family. Oye.<P>Yes, I could travel to buy a car, but it just seems a shame that there are literally 25 cars sitting in garages in Tucson that I'd love to have, but the owners are "going to restore them someday".<P>Being a younger enthusiast (40yo) I'd give some energy and enthusiasm to the local HC family, but they are loosing an opportunity to get a new active "young" member if only they'd open there garages to someone interested in their cars.<P>Anyone experiencing similar "hoarding"? Any solutions?<P>Peter<p>[ 04-16-2002: Message edited by: peterg ]

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Peter, Great topic!I'm coming from the hot rod topic to the brass car topic (have one of each). My best advice is to get to know the brass car guys in your area real well, and let them know you want a brass car. They are a tight knit groupe here on the East Coast as well. Most don't want some new guy coming in and buying a car that has been in the family for 20-30 years and flipping it for a big profit inside of a few months.I've got a 1912 T that was restored in 1950, and still looks good from 25 feet. The fellow that owned it when I first saw it had a heart problem years later, and all his brass cars went on the market. If people know you'd be a good caretaker of their brass car you may get a call some day.You can't buy a better first time brass car than a Ford T!<P>[ 04-16-2002: Message edited by: 1937hd45 ]<p>[ 04-16-2002: Message edited by: 1937hd45 ]

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I'l venture the same can be said about people who stash away parts for cars they do not and will probably never own, but will not sell any to folks who have a genuine need for them. I know a guy who has 6 complete sets of NOS 1962 Oldsmobile Starfire side trim. Doesn't own a Starfire, much less a 62, but he stumbled on this stuff years back and is sitting on it. Kind of a "Look what I have" syndrome.

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The conventional wisdom is always to join the club before you buy the car and use the resources within it to help you get what you want. It's supposed to be better than buying something on the open market and then finding the club that can help you. I've done it both ways, and the conventional wisdom has never been true for me. <P>Usually for me the first purchase of a car recognized by the club is the price of admission to it's "serious" ranks, as opposed to being just a dues-paying member. I've met people who belong to clubs that I'm sure will <I>never</I> buy a car associated with that club. They may be sad cases, wanna-be's, or poseurs of some type. Unfortunately, when you join a club without the car it's common to get lumped in with those categories. <P>Often people join clubs only for the social aspects of the club, which is certainly something positive. I am <I>not</I> condemning these people at all, or any other person who joins any club for that matter. <P>It may be a good course of action to aquire a car outside of the organization, even if you're not getting <I>exactly</I> what you want. You can always re-sell it when you get what you really want through club connections you can then make by being seen as "serious" about the hobby.<P>It's unfortunate and elitist that things can be this way, but it happens.

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peterg -<BR>Seems to me that what you consider "hoarding" I consider to be collecting. As in "this is my collection of brass cars that have taken me years to acquire and which I enjoy owning".<P>There are plenty of brass cars for sale. 1937's suggestion about Ford Ts is excellent because there are a number of good cars to choose from and the availability of parts to keep them running is widespread. Check the Ford T International and America web sites where several cars are for sale.

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leadfoot,<P>Totally agree! Describing those who collect as "hoarders" is a bit harsh. Mostly i'm just airing my frustration that there are lots of cars out there worth restoring... but many have been "collected" and arent available anymore.<P>Peter

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peterg -<BR>These old timers (people, not the cars) are tricky to work with, for sure. However, I've personally seen situations within local AACA clubs where you make it widely known that you are looking to acquire X make, within Y years with a clear stated purpose of use and/or restoration. Make this announcement at monthly meetings, in the newsletter and try to get one of the primary players to be your advocate. You may not actually get a lead on a car within you local club, but often someone will know about an opportunity within their network.

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Peter,<P> I don't consider your factual statements as "whining". You're simply telling it like it is from your perspective.<P> From the other side of the table comes this flavor of "whining". The old pharts are just sick and tired of all the BS wheeler-dealers in this hobby. It seems that the success of the transaction is measured by the degree of trauma inflicted upon the other person.<P> This year, I want to sell two mid '50s cars at fair market value. I also want to GIVE a 25 year old car with less than 40,000 miles that I bought new to a younger member of AACA. The thought of putting up with the inevitable crap is making root canal seem like a fun experience.<P> Whine On, Tom

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Peterg, the number of folks who have incredible collections of brass cars is larger than most people think. Collecting these cars and preserving them is their passion. Without some of these folks many of these cars would have been destroyed as taking on a brass-era restoration can be a daunting task in some cases. Stay with your quest! I have found a shocking number of unrestored brass cars in just this last year. So far no purchases made but I know they are out there. As far as using a car on tour i know this is done often, however, joining a HCCA region is probably a must unless you are "tight" with some of the AACA'ers. Usually, someone starts with riding along on a tour and then "graduates" to getting the use of a vehicle. HCCA is desperate for younger members and i think the club recognizes the challenges to find younger people who like the brass era like us. I am in my early 50's and am considered to be a youngster in the brass community! Final thought...Seek and ye shall find!

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This can be a tough one alright. I'm also younger (40 as of yesterday!) and I have a brass era car, just lucky I guess. But I think in some cases hoarding is not too harsh a word. I know people with huge piles of parts, and complete cars, that are not able to store them properly, and will not part with anything at any price, no matter how bad you need it. I have in my short lifetime seen good restorable (rare) cars literaly rot right into the ground because they " are going to restore it". I find you can not deal with these guys, nice guy or not. That is hoarding! rolleyes.gif" border="0<p>[ 04-17-2002: Message edited by: Stllrng. ]

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Something else to think about when talking about prople who hang onto parts they dont need<P>Some of us have gotten older and have parts around for cars we dont even have anymore but just do not feel like making the effort to sell them. We have had them a long time and we dont have much money tied up in them and it is more trouble than its worth to try to sell them. <P>If I know someone who needs a part that I have I will sell it for a fair price or even give it to him. But I just cant load all that stuff in a trailer take it 600 miles to Hershey if I could get a space and then probably bring most of it back. I wont live long enough to put all those parts together with the people who need them so I dont try.<P>Im not holding onto any thing like rare Dusenberg parts and if I dont care if I dont sell my parts I guess that should be my right. It is my junk you know. <P>Any body can want my parts but they really dont have a right to complain because I dont want to sell what is mine.<P>I guess that goes for cars too.

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Monty,<P>Totally agree. They are your parts (and cars) and you absolutely have the right to do with them as you wish.<P>My point is that I want to get into horseless carraiges... but although there are lots of cars in garages, they arent available for purchase.<P>Yup... im whining. grin.gif" border="0 <P>Peter

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Boy, I can't let this topic go by without a comment. I have similiar feelings about trying to get into the brass era car circle. I am definately one of the yonger Brass era enthusiests at 37 (two weeks ago). I have been a member of the Horseless Carriage Club for 12 yrs or so and just got my brass era car 2 yrs ago. All I could afford was a pile of junk which I will spend the next several years restoring. Luckly I enjoy the challenge. <P>I get sick of the people running for club offices saying "we need to get the younger people involved", while a collection of brass era cars sits in their garage, some of which rarely get attention. Alot of the "older" owners of brass era cars payed scrap prices for the cars and now are trying to retire onthe profits. I do not have a problem with this, it is their car and they are entitled to make a profit. But please, do not do this, and in the same breath talk about getting younger members involved. I can not afford most of the prices I see on brass era cars. I have a young family and they have to come first. <P>My dad is just as guilty as anyone of this. He has 10+ pre1932 cars sitting in his garage, and only plays with 1 or two. Of course I do not want him to sell them, but I could have restored some of them in the last few years. I do not know what his plans are for the cars, but I do know he will have them when he dies, and I am in no hurry for that to happen. I am just not going to wait for them like my brother is. <P>My neighbor is another example. I Bought my 1912 E-M-F in June of 2000. Later that year I found another 1912 with the same body style as mine about 1 hour away. The owner had just died. The car was for sale. The price was well out of my range. I told my neighbor, not thinking he would be interested, and much to my suprise, he was, and bought it. It now sits in his garage and I would be suprised to ever see it run, unless I get it running. Now he is buying parts that he does not need (his car is in fairly good shape outside of the rear end) and keeping them out of my hands. Most recent example is a carburator. He found a guy that had an E-M-F Carburator. I told him that was one of the things I needed. He bought it himself and it is now sitting on a shelf in his garrage. He will never use it because he does not have the ability to do the work to it that it needs. <P>One more example is a man I knew my whole life. He had many nice cars including a 1910 Cole Demi Tonneau and a 1907 Cadillac touring (1 cylinder). I told him that if he was ever ready to get rid of any cars to please let me know. The last time I talked to him about it was about two years before he passed away and he said they would sell at his estate sail. Shortly after that he had a reoccurance of cancer. I visitied him many times through this, never mentioning the cars, because at that point it was the last thing on my mind. One day he decided to sell the cars and in less than a week they were all gone. I did not know about it until it was done. The Cadilac went to a guy who had several other nice brass cars. The last time I talked to him, he brought it up and I said I would have sure liked to have bought one of them . He told me if he had known, he would have sold me one. I do not know what else I could have done. Fact of the matter is that all of these cars could have stayed within our club if the club members had knew they were for sale.<P><BR>I could go on because this is a topic that has frustrated me for years. Luckly, I have met alot of nice people because of this E-M-F and I look forward to the day I will be able to drive it. If you would like to follow the restoration of my 1912 E-M-F, check out the E-M-F Homepage. <P><A HREF="http://1freespace.com/auto/jmd1" TARGET=_blank>E-M-F Homepage</A><P><BR>Hang in there. If you are patient, they will come.

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John, Your stories remind me of the 1911 Huppmobile I wanted years ago. A local region member and good friend bought the Hupp from the family of the original owner, a very nice well kept automobile. He desided to sell it and told me the price. This was doable if I sold off a few projects. Once I had half the money I went back, only to find out that the car had been sold! MY MISTAKE! I should have told the owner up front what my plans were, and he would have worked with me on the deal. Turns out he would have liked for me to have the car. So, learn from my mistake, if you find a brass car that you want say so! Keep in contact with the owner, have some money put aside for that magic moment when a car if for sale.

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Dear Peter,<BR>We currently have 3-4 cars that fit in your catagory. What do you want and price range you would like to be in? We are currently working on a collection that has 5 cars pre-1910 and all are new to the US.<BR>Ed Fallon <BR>Phoenix

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