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bridge67

Tips for buying a project car/ barn find/ junker...

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Deside what your "Dream Car" is, then read all you can find about it. You'll then find that buying a finished one or one that is road worthy is a better investment than a "Barn Find" project. Bob

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Buy the best car you can find or afford. Do not even consider any car unless it is complete, running, driving, and in decent shape. Do not overmatch yourself on your first project. It costs so much money (not to mention time) to restore an old car it is actually cheaper to buy a good one.

You should be aiming for a #3 car. A solid driver that looks good from 20 feet away. Not a 100 point show car (too much $$$ bucks to buy) or a klunker (too much time and $$$$ bucks to fix up).

If you can find a knowledgeable mechanic to inspect the car so much the better.

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The question that started this thread was, "is there a checklist to use". After giving it some thought and seeing all the posts about what the car should or shouldn't be, I don't think I saw any mention of the checklist for the buyer. What can you do, or will you do yourself? How rare or popular do you want your car to be? What do you want it to be when it's finished. I think most important, to me anyway is, what am I going to be able to afford and how long am I willing to take to make it what I want it to be. If you want rust free, complete, driving and in good shape you're likely going to have to spend several more dollars than if you get the same car that needs some work. The checklist used to look at any car is going to have to take in consideration the purchaser's own situation. I don't think there can be one set checklist for what a car should be without knowing the buyers abilities both physical and financial.

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Well a K-T chart is best. Divide into "Musts" and "Wants"

Musts are things like "No Rust","Complete", or "Drivable". Wants are things like color and options. My rule is if a car fails any "Must" or three "Wants", I walk.

To each their own as to what goes into the musts/wants, some score wants 1-10 and require a minimum total. Any works but you must be brutal about it.

Alway have another reliable car to use when your project isn't. Pesonaly try to keep at leas one that is both reliable and tow capable (rarely use a trailer, usually either a flat tow or dolly. All of mine have alternators and a/c, are more than enough oddballs to limit to more recent stuff (am thinking about another Fiero) of course, to me anything post 90 is a "new car".

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