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Our repair bills are a bit higher today


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I purchased some old Packard repair receipts on ebay just for fun.  Here's one below from 1951, in which Mr. Walter Swoope needed some work on his 1940 Packard 120 convertible.  So he went to the local Packard service station and they repaired his right front fender, repaired his deck lid,  gave him a new deck lid handle, and installed the handle . -- all for $16.50 total,  consisting of $12.50 in labor and $4 in parts.    Of course, inflation since 1951 means that to get to today's dollar, you have to multiply by 10 to get to a current equivalent.  Still, $165 is a quite the cheap repair!   On the other hand, that Packard was probably worth, somewhere in the ballpark of what, maybe $100 back then?   That would be around $1000 today, if so. 

 

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Edited by 1935Packard (see edit history)
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So this is cool: I just googled "Walter Swoope" and "Packard," and up came this recent estate sale of Walter Swoope, where among the items up for sale is a 1940 Packard 120 convertible!  And they even have pictures of the car on the estate sale website.  See one of the images below. 

 

The family must have held on to the car all those years.  Neat.  My first thought is to reunite my receipts with the new owner if I can find him, as the new owner should have this.   But given that I just recently purchased the receipts, maybe it was the new owner who was getting rid of the receipts instead.....

 

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In 1971, my mom's 1960 Pontiac got hit head on at rather slow speed by a Datsun 510 after skidding on a patch of ice.  The 510 was barely drivable, and the only damage the Pontiac received was a broken headlight, and a bent up headlight door.  My mom's local Texaco station did the repair; $13.20 for the headlight door, (which I really thought was overpriced for a stamped piece of thin aluminum back then, but it was a 'genuine GM' part), $3.00 for a new low-beam headlight, and $3.00 for labor and aiming the headlight.

 

Craig

Edited by 8E45E (see edit history)
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Pricing is probably not all that much different - I recall restoration of our first 1931 Cadillac in mid 1970's and it was no different a discussion as to cost to do a high point car today - ie not going to be cheap any way about it. 

 

I will say some of the services though that were readily available in every major city are just close to no more and as a result those items/services tend to be more expensive. 

 

And, interestingly it was a whole lot easier to get parts for the 1931 Cadillac via the volume that were being restored at the time (even pre-internet and ....) - usually a trip to Hershey or a call to one of the key people supplying parts would result in needs satisfied. 

 

I did used a calculator on the internet - the 25K we spent to restore the 1931 Cadillac (a 355 V-8 Town Sedan) was a looser in 1975, and would be a looser today at 120K,  in 2019. 

Edited by John_Mereness (see edit history)
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A bit higher? An acquaintance has some sort of special edition high end Mercedes and his wife knocked off a rear view mirror somehow. It had internal motors that would fold the mirror in when the car was put in park, internal defrost heaters, motors to adjust the mirror, directional lights and something called lane assist. The quotes to replace the mirror was $2200. $2200 for a mirror!!!!

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1 hour ago, 46 woodie said:

A bit higher? An acquaintance has some sort of special edition high end Mercedes and his wife knocked off a rear view mirror somehow. It had internal motors that would fold the mirror in when the car was put in park, internal defrost heaters, motors to adjust the mirror, directional lights and something called lane assist. The quotes to replace the mirror was $2200. $2200 for a mirror!!!!

Anytime in the history of mirrors that you knock one off it has been more expensive than you would think. 

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Of course in 1976 I was supporting my family in a $25k (7% GI mortgage) house on an acre as an engineer with $750/month take home. Was paid once a month and things got a little tight toward the end.

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In 1964 my father and I were traveling in Western New York and our '52 Plymouth developed a bad rod knock.  We stopped at a junkyard and the sympathetic owner (Stanley Stauba, who was very well known and well-liked in the area) sold us a running flathead six for $20.00.  There was a mechanic buying parts there and he said he'd swap engines for $25.00.  The total bill, including one or two miscellaneous charges, was about $46.00.

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12 minutes ago, Lebowski said:

 

Why is the dealer's first name spelled "Jno"  on the top but spelled "John" on the payment received stamp? 

I asked the Lititz historical society that question myself, apparently it was a well recognized abbreviation for John in early American history. The town of Lititz was founded by immigrants from Germany and Switzerland, most of which were of the Moravian faith, so Jno was familiar to them. 

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10 hours ago, TerryB said:

I asked the Lititz historical society that question myself, apparently it was a well recognized abbreviation for John in early American history. The town of Lititz was founded by immigrants from Germany and Switzerland, most of which were of the Moravian faith, so Jno was familiar to them. 

 

That's right. https://www.british-genealogy.com/forum/archive/index.php/t-62140.html

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