Dynaflash8

Is hobby interest in pre-WWII cars Dying?

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In the completed auction section of your cars listing it has been bid up as high as $33,400.00 and still not met the reserve. That tells potential buyers the reserve is probably at least $35,000 and possibly higher. $33,400 could be your cars realistic market value. Get the dealer out of the picture and shoot for that price on your own. If it is too much trouble to sell the car yourself do you have a knowledgeable friend that might help out ?

 

Greg

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Recovering the cost of the Professional Restoration rarely happens on any car. Bob 

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Posted (edited)
22 minutes ago, 1937hd45 said:

Recovering the cost of the Professional Restoration rarely happens on any car.

 

That would be correct.

 

That's why we call it a hobby—even though some of us try and a few of us succeed at making a business out of it.

Edited by j3studio (see edit history)
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1 hour ago, Kevin M said:

I like these cars and I’m 25. I’d love to own a 39 Buick, even more so a four door convertible. From the pictures that your broker has on Hemmings and how you’ve described it, along with all the posts that you have commented on I believe it’s worth exactly what you want. Or more. 

I have a few friends in my age range who are Into classic cars. The guy with the oldest one has a 74 vw bug. Next is a guy with a 78 Datsun. I have a 91 Reatta. I did meet a 19 year old who restored a 25 model T with his dad so there are some people out there. Not many that are young are into pre war cars. I always go out of my way to talk to guys with pre war cars at shows. It usually makes them very happy to have a young person talk to them. 

My main reasons for not buying something Pre War are I don’t know how to drive a standard, I’m saving up to move out and buy my own house, and if I did buy one my mom would kill me. 

 

 

Just something to ease your worries about driving a standard.  I too have a 1939 Buick.  They are engineered and powered so effectively that, on flat ground, you can let out the clutch and it will take off without even giving it any gas.  Its a great car to learn on.

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You also may not see alot of families and associated young guys at shows because money is still tight.  Alot of bigger shows get 10.00 a head or so for spectators.  Think about it.  Some do allow kids under 12 in free,  but a family with two early teens mom and dad,  that's $40 to start.  Add any food and you are at $60+.   I know it's a hobby but when battling for ever important family dollars they may be spending that money elsewhere.  I know when I had  3 or 4 cars registered in a show, when I was a little younger and more foolish to try to get that many vehicles to a show,   I would take all the extra passes out to the street that came with the cars and find a family that looked like they could use it and give them the passes.  No sense in wasting them.   I bet more families in the lower income levels are into cars than upper income levels.  They have to make do and work on them often buying lesser vehicles and rebuilding them so many appreciate nice old machinery that's been well taken care of,  some not so much but I bet many do. 

My family was always doing that. You bought something that needed work and fixed it up so you had a nice car.  Not old cars and restoring just regular cars you used every day.  I know my Dad bought atleast 4 wrecked cars / trucks and rebuilt them, but he has told me of many more I didn't see, back before today's whole salvage issue and branded titles became such a big deal as well as cars became so much more sophisticated. 

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Over the weekend my Wife and I drove past a place where it looked like a guy was selling his 50 year collection of golf clubs. It sure made me glad I was into old cars.

 

I guess things could always be worse.

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I also know as a kid pre 16 say. I think I only went to a couple of local car shows ever.   There are only 2 I can recall.  After 16 I did attend a few more.  It doesn't mean I didn't have oil pumping through my veins and consumed anything old cars,  even though Dad was a car guy,  he often worked 6 days a week, there wasn't alot of time to do stuff like that,  and he is an old car guy,   just not one that had a cushy 40 hour a week job with lots of time off.  He also never had an old car when I was growing up.  He had a couple before but that's when most were junk and now has 3 in his garage that he still has no time for as he just went back driving Dump truck on construction at 78. 

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6 hours ago, edinmass said:

Younger people are not car centric like most of us were thirty or more years ago. Just about everyone here went from a bicycle, lawn mower, mini bike, go cart, motorcycle, ect

 

I think you're conflating a lack of interest in old cars with a lack of interest in cars. Car culture among Millennials is very strong, you just need to look for it in the right places. 

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2 hours ago, Kevin M said:

My main reasons for not buying something Pre War are I don’t know how to drive a standard, I’m saving up to move out and buy my own house, and if I did buy one my mom would kill me.  

 

You know, there really isn't a lot to it.  Even my 79 year old wife can drive a straight shift and my 62 year old daughter.  It isn't really the big thing a lot of young people seem to make it.  You could become smooth at in a day of practice.  That's a lot quicker than a smart phone from my point of view.  I know, I've been trying since Friday.😀

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I'm not good with touch screens.  My fist keeps getting in the way of the icons. ;) 

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I know its not hard to learn.its more of I haven’t had a chance to.  My younger brother and I are probably going to buy 90s Jeep to learn on this summer. Maybe keep it maybe not. I also want to learn on something other than my first pre war car purchase. That sounds like a potentially expensive mistake depending on the car. 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, 1912Staver said:

In the completed auction section of your cars listing it has been bid up as high as $33,400.00 and still not met the reserve. That tells potential buyers the reserve is probably at least $35,000 and possibly higher. $33,400 could be your cars realistic market value. Get the dealer out of the picture and shoot for that price on your own. If it is too much trouble to sell the car yourself do you have a knowledgeable friend that might help out ?

 

Greg

That doesn't tell you a thing.  You don't who was bidding or why.  So you think $35,000 is too much for a 4dr convertible?  You can't simply go to the lowest denominator.  I just know the 41 4dr convertible was proven to be worth $55,700 and that is a fact.

Edited by Dynaflash8 (see edit history)

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, auburnseeker said:

You also may not see alot of families and associated young guys at shows because money is still tight.  Alot of bigger shows get 10.00 a head or so for spectators.  Think about it.  Some do allow kids under 12 in free,  but a family with two early teens mom and dad,  that's $40 to start.  Add any food and you are at $60+.   I know it's a hobby but when battling for ever important family dollars they may be spending that money elsewhere.  I know when I had  3 or 4 cars registered in a show, when I was a little younger and more foolish to try to get that many vehicles to a show,   I would take all the extra passes out to the street that came with the cars and find a family that looked like they could use it and give them the passes.  No sense in wasting them.   I bet more families in the lower income levels are into cars than upper income levels.  They have to make do and work on them often buying lesser vehicles and rebuilding them so many appreciate nice old machinery that's been well taken care of,  some not so much but I bet many do. 

My family was always doing that. You bought something that needed work and fixed it up so you had a nice car.  Not old cars and restoring just regular cars you used every day.  I know my Dad bought atleast 4 wrecked cars / trucks and rebuilt them, but he has told me of many more I didn't see, back before today's whole salvage issue and branded titles became such a big deal as well as cars became so much more sophisticated. 

There is never any public admission charge to an AACA National Meet.  There may well be a strong parking free though.  Carlisle is something totally different for example.  There is a strong entrance fee an strong parking fees there also.

Edited by Dynaflash8 (see edit history)

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I know Hershey is free.  It's the only free event I attend that cost me $800 in other attendance fees.  Which I gladly pay. 

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3 minutes ago, auburnseeker said:

I'm not good with touch screens.  My fist keeps getting in the way of the icons. ;) 

 

 

The big turn off to the iPhone people besides the superiority complex they have is the obscenities involved in trying to show you photos on a 3x3 screen. ---ing this ----ing that, finger flaying across the screen, can't put up with it, no reason to join the heard of lemmings. Bob 

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Posted (edited)
34 minutes ago, 1937hd45 said:

The big turn off to the iPhone people besides the superiority complex they have is the obscenities involved in trying to show you photos on a 3x3 screen. ---ing this ----ing that, finger flaying across the screen, can't put up with it, no reason to join the heard of lemmings.

 

Casually writing off 90 million in the US alone would strike me as an effective way to make this hobby smaller. The iPhone is just a tool; and a very effective one for some of us.

 

Big tent, big tent!

Edited by j3studio (see edit history)
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Just now, j3studio said:

 

Casually writing off 90 million in the US alone would strike me as an effective way to make this hobby smaller. It's just a tool; and a very effective one for some of us.

 

Big tent, big tent!

Yes, I noticed some people have a built in flashlight in theirs. 

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Posted (edited)
44 minutes ago, Dynaflash8 said:

That doesn't tell you a thing.  You don't who was bidding or why.  So you think $35,000 is too much for a 4dr convertible?  You can't simply go to the lowest denominator.  I just know the 41 4dr convertible was proven to be worth $55,700 and that is a fact.

 

 

I have no real idea of what a very nice 4 dr convert is worth. Once a car is clearly beyond me price wise I for the most part tune them out.  Very nice cars for someone with far more disposable income than I will ever have. Same with boats, pre -war motorcycles, airplanes etc. All things that at one time were possibly within my reach and I was very interested in however time priced me out of the market for all of those things. Now they are of a slight academic interest to me , nothing more.

  I was only stating what I observed someone was willing to pay, and suggesting that in todays market place that might be close to a realistic value. I am no expert on the realistic price of any car that I am not prepared to put up the cash for. I can only concretely make statements on cars I have actually purchased or been willing to purchase and been a little too late on.

On ebay do you ever know who is bidding or why?

It's your car, you can put whatever value you want on it.

 

Greg

Edited by 1912Staver (see edit history)
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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Buick64C said:

 

I think you're conflating a lack of interest in old cars with a lack of interest in cars. Car culture among Millennials is very strong, you just need to look for it in the right places. 

 

This.

 

A primary factor driving all segments of the hobby is sentiment and memories. Earl bought his '39 Buick because of the pleasant memories he has of his father's '39 Buick. I have a '41 Buick because my father had one. I bet most of you have a similar story behind the cars you own. There's an emotional connection, what I call a touchstone, to certain cars that drives the way you participate in the hobby.

 

That's not the ONLY factor, of course, but it certainly shouldn't be a surprise that kids today don't really have a touchstone to anything that old. Their 60-something fathers probably have muscle cars, not antiques, which were the cars of THEIR youth. Today's young hobbyists probably drove Toyota Corollas and Ford Tauruses in high school, not '52 Chevys they bought for $65 and slapped on a set of Fenton headers. The touchstone just isn't there for pre-war cars and younger people unless they've been in the hobby with their parents who also collected pre-war cars (and it is likely that the only reason THEY collect pre-war cars is because THEIR parents did).

 

I suspect it was the same years back when everyone in the hobby was wondering why the hell all those fools would want to collect '50s cars or muscle cars. It's normal and it's time marching on.

 

I don't think there's anything we can do to make young kids like older cars if they aren't predisposed to that already. I was weird in high school because I wanted a Model A to drive every day in the '80s (my father had one), and it's certainly not going to be any better today. My friends had 5.0 Mustangs and Camaros and Chevy Blazers, while I had a '76 Eldorado convertible that I scraped off the pavement when my father was done abusing it. Exposure is the best way to promote the older cars, but to assume that if those stupid young people would just get out of their phones and listen to us that '30s cars are better, they'd want them, well, that's just not gonna happen.

 

What will happen is values will decline rapidly on cars that older people are selling and younger people don't want until they're cheap enough that young people can afford to buy them out of curiosity. The same kids who are farming in New York City and making hand-crafted knives in blacksmith forges. They won't have any idea what they're getting into, but they'll be curious and maybe the cycle will start all over. Maybe. The only thing that I can guarantee is that someone will always own the cars and values on anything but top-shelf exotic stuff are going to fall and fall hard. Sorry.


Enjoy your cars and the time you have. Forget the money. Like vacations, hobbies aren't supposed to pay you back for participating. I guarantee the guy with the used golf clubs in Bernie's post isn't expecting to make a profit on their sale...

 

 

 

Edited by Matt Harwood (see edit history)
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Selling cars and selling parts is the same concept, only the numbers differ. I've often accepted an offer on a part I may have over valued. Having that $100.00 in hand vs a maybe $200.00 many times allows me to Buy a $300.00 item for $100.00' 

 

 

Bob 

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a nice 39 convertible coupe sold at Hershey this past fall for less then 19k.

nowhere near the condition of this car, but a good driving car with an old amateur restoration.

 

I was surprised it was that low and half tempted to buy it. but I already have about 20 cars around here and need to sell more then a few off.

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Downward mobility during our 50's and 60's for a number of us in the middle class is just as much a fact as upward mobility was in our 30's and 40's.

 You have a middle class car that mainly  appeals to older middle class buyers. 

And your price needs to meet the ability to pay of your potential market in order to make a sale. So far your experience and frustration suggest there is a gap.

 

Greg

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Matt Harwood said:

 

This.

 

A primary factor driving all segments of the hobby is sentiment and memories. Earl bought his '39 Buick because of the pleasant memories he has of his father's '39 Buick. I have a '41 Buick because my father had one. I bet most of you have a similar story behind the cars you own. There's an emotional connection, what I call a touchstone, to certain cars that drives the way you participate in the hobby.

 

That's not the ONLY factor, of course, but it certainly shouldn't be a surprise that kids today don't really have a touchstone to anything that old. Their 60-something fathers probably have muscle cars, not antiques, which were the cars of THEIR youth. Today's young hobbyists probably drove Toyota Corollas and Ford Tauruses in high school, not '52 Chevys they bought for $65 and slapped on a set of Fenton headers. The touchstone just isn't there for pre-war cars and younger people unless they've been in the hobby with their parents who also collected pre-war cars (and it is likely that the only reason THEY collect pre-war cars is because THEIR parents did).

 

I suspect it was the same years back when everyone in the hobby was wondering why the hell all those fools would want to collect '50s cars or muscle cars. It's normal and it's time marching on.

 

I don't think there's anything we can do to make young kids like older cars if they aren't predisposed to that already. I was weird in high school because I wanted a Model A to drive every day in the '80s (my father had one), and it's certainly not going to be any better today. My friends had 5.0 Mustangs and Camaros and Chevy Blazers, while I had a '76 Eldorado convertible that I scraped off the pavement when my father was done abusing it. Exposure is the best way to promote the older cars, but to assume that if those stupid young people would just get out of their phones and listen to us that '30s cars are better, they'd want them, well, that's just not gonna happen.

 

What will happen is values will decline rapidly on cars that older people are selling and younger people don't want until they're cheap enough that young people can afford to buy them out of curiosity. The same kids who are farming in New York City and making hand-crafted knives in blacksmith forges. They won't have any idea what they're getting into, but they'll be curious and maybe the cycle will start all over. Maybe. The only thing that I can guarantee is that someone will always own the cars and values on anything but top-shelf exotic stuff are going to fall and fall hard. Sorry.


Enjoy your cars and the time you have. Forget the money. Like vacations, hobbies aren't supposed to pay you back for participating. I guarantee the guy with the used golf clubs in Bernie's post isn't expecting to make a profit on their sale...

 

 

 

Absolutely everything you said is correct Matt and has been obvious to me since Jay Leno said it was coming.  I've seen all of the macinations (sp?) that AACA has gone through for the last 15-20 years up close and personal.  You'd think I would have realized the value of my car was melting away before my eyes BUT it is a 4dr convertible!  It won't happen to me......ha-ha-ha.  I have kept her too long....sort of like holding on to a company stock while the company behind it was going up in flames.  Remember, I started at 14 and followed this hobby until I'm 80.  The saddest day in my life is to think this car that has shared my life for almost 50 years is facing a new sociey that wants to throw it away.  I worked all of my adult life to keep this car "for the future" to only find the future is gone now that I don't have that much future anymore.  I have nobody to blame but ME.  It's like the guy who keeps smoking while watching friends and family dying all around him from lung Cancer.  He keeps thinking, "Oh, that won't happen to me." 

Edited by Dynaflash8 (see edit history)
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Posted (edited)

Your car has many fans who certainly don't want to throw it away.  But money is a problem for many middle class people once they hit their 50's.  

The new society might not generally want a 1939 Buick. But lots of people age 50 and up still have up to 30 years left to enjoy cars like your Buick. They just don't have any or many earning years left. So hobby cars need to be in the modest price range for it to work for them. Kids education and retirement savings are first and foremost.

Repeat, there are hundreds ; if not thousands ,of people who do not want to "throw it away".

 

Greg

Edited by 1912Staver (see edit history)
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I will say a convertible sedan , especially of the late 30's variety of any make is less sporty than a convertible coupe.  Sporty sells, always has.  That's probably one of the reasons there has been little activity on your car. 

I remember seeing a few very nice 41 Convertible sedans for mid 40's not all that long ago,  perhaps even when the market was better, and they weren't selling.  I thought wow what a deal on those, can't believe they aren't selling.  I imagine it's only gotten worse.  I have seen some pretty nice 41 to 47 Caddy convertible coupes lately for the money I think you want out of yours, so in many cases you are competing with cars like that as brand and model loyalty dies so that only flash comes into factor. 

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