69 GTO

69 GTO Restoration Costs

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57 minutes ago, Xander Wildeisen said:

I am going to throw some thing out there. And I am not saying that it might be in play here, just some thing to think about. There are a lot of shady things that small shops have to deal with. (69 GTO read the topic restoring cars for a living) If you have a shop that does a good job, and other people/shops want to cause them problems. One way that they can do it, is to cause problems from inside the shop. If you have a bad apple in your company, that person can cause a lot of problems. Delays in getting stuff done and cost over runs. And then that spills over on to the shop/owner. He or she gets hit with a bad rap, over charges customers,long time frame to finish the job, and so on. Again, I am not saying that this is going on. Just saying that some things like that go on. And a customer can get wrapped up in the middle of it. We all like to think that it is a fair playing field out there, but it is not. I think that this post is a good one, and others like it should be posted as well. A real honest conversation must be had from time to time about things, in order to keep the bad from getting to far out in front of the good. This is a wonderful job to have, restoring/building cars. You get to create, build,restore, improve,show and drive your finished product. A lot of pride goes into fixing up cars, so self policing and helping people out who do the same thing helps us all. Competition is a good thing, but dirty tricks behind the scene hurts us all. Maybe the shop is dealing with other factors we do not know about.        

 

Whatever might be happening shouldn't be the customer's problem.

 

The same shop that rebuilt my '29 Cadillac transmission had a disgruntled ex-employee dump some sand down the intake of a freshly rebuilt 1941 Cadillac motor before it went into the car. That engine failed in spectacular fashion when they fired it up the first time. The shop owned it and rebuilt the engine again; they didn't tell the customer he had to pay for another rebuild or that the job would now take twice as long and cost twice as much. Shop problems do not belong to the client and if you can't keep it from affecting your clients, it's time to close it up.

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I agree Matt, I have had to deal with people and customers causing problems. And I have never passed any charge over to the customer. There are a lot people that use other means to deal with competition, rather then buckle down and get the job done. It hurts us all. The people who are willing to work hard and do a good job, can be shut down by other people, and it is wrong. The people who work hard and do a good job, should rise to the top. I have said it before on this forum, and I will say it again. If the biggest problem this "hobby/industry" faces. Is the young people not wanting to get involved. May be some of the things that are done should be looked at, and talked about. Honesty can only help, if honesty is wanted.

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Hi Folks, quick update on this issue I brought up 2 years ago. The car is still in restoration - slow walked and now over $54K with no end in sight. They encountered no unforeseen issues, just hours and hours of billing. The time to pull the vehicle from the shop is long gone (IMO). The original expectation of $25K will now fall over $70K for a body only restoration of a very solid and clean 69. As a reminder, the shop is doing a frame on, body work only job. All parts and chroming were done by me so there are no parts involved. The current state is the car is assembled and panted (exterior only) and polished/wet sanded. Not sure why it was done in this order seeing they now need to disassemble the vehicle to paint the inside of the jams, doors, hood, fenders and trunk. Then the reassembly, so based on this and the vast history of billing, the total will now eclipse $70K for the body/paint. It's a shame because the shop knew I was on a $25K budget and looking for driver quality. last August I was given a verbal estimate for cost and timing but these will be more than double as we have already exceeded both late term estimates. It's a frustrating situation and one that is a huge learning exercise but I will say, these shops that clearly take in work for the revenue regardless of their clients expectations only hurt themselves as they ruin their reputation and the industry's reputation. I talked to several industry experts and unfortunately this is the pattern - say what you need to in-order to get the vehicle in and disassembled, then the customer and car are hostage. We already discussed the merits of pulling the vehicle, which I should have done at the start of this thread but it's too late at this point. Again, live and learn but for the $$ does it really help the overall industry when there are many collector owners out there telling folks the horror stories. This directly impacts the industry when folks who would restore are scared away - business lost. Fyi, when this car is done, I will have about $95K all in for a vehicle that's worth at best $45K.   

Edited by 69 GTO (see edit history)

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I won't comment on the whole putting money into a car that's not worth it because there are all sorts of reasons people own and restore cars, and many have nothing to do with money.  That said, based on what you are saying about what the shop is doing and charging you for this work, it sounds like they are 100% taking advantage of you, and for that, based only on what you have relayed in your posts, I feel for you.

 

It is very hard to be involved in this hobby if you don't have pre-existing go-to people when you need work done.  Things will cost more simply due to that.

Edited by 39BuickEight (see edit history)

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I had my 63 Riv painted in 2012 for $5K.  Driver quality, but quite good.  I delivered the car to the shop after complete disassembly, stripping, all rust repair complete, and in vari-prime.  Up to  that point, I had done all the work.  

 

It was a time permits winter job for a local shop with a good reputation,  I was encouraged to stop by every so often to see how things were going.   Overall, it took 4 months.  I did all the reassembly which took a lot of hours over the next couple of years.  I suspect the shop didn't make any significant profit, but the owner is a car guy and takes on a few of these types of jobs.

 

You apppear to have a huge communication failure here.  When I had my car done, I knew others who had used the shop, seen the work, and was very clear as to what I would get.   I also invested a lot of hours (hundreds) into getting the car ready and finishing it after it was painted.  I am still working on the interior,  but it looks great going down the road.  

 

Its a shame you are having a bad experience, but due diligence is critical in selecting a shop.  Clear communication and expectations is equally critical.  

 

Good luck, but there is no way I would have allowed this to go on for three years.

Edited by Zimm63 (see edit history)

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GTO,

thank you for the update.

 

To answer your initial question- yes you are correct, you have been totally screwed. There is nobody on this thread who can justify what has been done. This isnt just bad communication, but why people get divorced daily.

I have to agree with Zimm-there is NO way I would have allowed this to go on for 3 years. I would have just given the car up and seen a good attorney.....

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