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Suggestions on how to sell project/parts cars.


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Over the years I have purchased (and still own) about 25 project or parts cars and trucks, mostly 50's and 60's, but with a couple of 80's thrown in for good measure. Due to pressures from age, health and wife, I have decided to thin (eliminate?) the collection this summer. Most are complete and have titles. Many were driven were driven onto the property, but not started or moved in years. All but 3 or 4 have been outside in a dry climate (little rain, low humidity) but winter snow.

The question is whether to list them one at a time on craigslist, call a local auctioneer for a mass sale, use ebay, or find some other on-line (or not) method. I have a general idea what each is worth and won't be unreasonable in pricing them. I'd just like to have some suggestions as to what has worked for others who have successfully sold project cars. I live in a medium sized city, easy highway access, with the typical scammers and bottom feeders to watch out for.  

If you have a helpful suggestion, please let me know.

 

 

 

 

Junkyardcartoon.jpg

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Man, f.f.’ , At almost 78 and disabled, I hear you loud and clear about the age and health pressures. The wife ? Luckily , Sandy doesn’t pressurize me about much. And she is a very good cook. But , HEY ! As long as you are up, start right here , right now. List it all for practice, quick sale price, and give your exact location. You just never know until you ask. Washington, you say ? Gotta  be out of the wet side and into the more central part. I am about 12 miles N.N.W. out of Ellensburg. Do make the most of your presence here with AACA.     You just never know...............         -     Cadillac Carl, last house way up Reecer Creek Road. The cattle guard and turnaround are adjacent to my property. You will see a 45 foot Great Dane trailer just inside my high gate. Oh : and I need a 1924 Cadillac parts car. You just never know until you ask. 

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You might call the proprietors of specialty junkyards.

For example, Bob Hoffmeister in Nebraska makes a

living parting out (Chrysler) Imperials.  Someone else

may specialize in Corvair parts, Cadillac parts, Lincoln

parts.  Give them a package deal that makes it 

worthwhile for them to transport several cars if you 

have several in their category.

 

Please remember, you want to get RID of the cars.

They're not an investment.  The price has to be good

enough to make it worthwhile for the buyers.

 

All the best to you, Mr. Jones!

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f.f.jones:

Project cars are difficult to sell now but to assist the effort, how quickly they do for you depends on these things:

1) What make, year and model are each.

2) A complete description of known condition of each including problems and missing parts.

3) Many good, clear photos to support the above.

4) Location.

5) Price and whether negotiable.

6) Contact information; phone, email, text, time of day or limits thereon.

 

Rather than try to do all 25 at once, take one or two, develop a good thorough advertisement to post here in this section:

Automobiles and Parts - Buy/Sell - Antique Automobile Club of America - Discussion Forums (aaca.org)

 

Show us what you have individually, be open to suggestions and responses, good luck with your sale.

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Please note that this forum has limited reach.

Its readers, though dedicated car fans, are

not the largest market for your cars.  Advertising

elsewhere, or contacting others as I noted above,

will likely bear more fruit.

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Three thoughts:

- decide if really restorable or if a parts car

- tell everybody what you have to sell. You never know.

- think about a package deal for a nice car plus a parts car.

 

Also think what it is worth to have an empty car-shaped place.

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If you have project cars/parts, the only way to sell them is to give them to the first guy who is willing to take them, regardless of how much or how little he offers. 

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11 minutes ago, Matt Harwood said:

If you have project cars/parts, the only way to sell them is to give them to the first guy who is willing to take them, regardless of how much or how little he offers. 

 

Perfectly stated............

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Dry, Eastern Washington project cars with titles should sell.  The desirable cars might even bring some decent $. But yes, like others are saying it will be a bit more work that say 20 years ago. 

 

It will all depend on what they are. 

Price them to sell and I would expect they will move. 

I have not kept a close eye on Washington State because of the border closure.  But just next door , here in British Columbia I have been watching . And over the last year any reasonably priced, reasonably desirable , project or parts car seems to sell quickly.  

Craigslist is about the only venue I regularly watch, not a face booker at all so I don't know about the success rate on that site.  I have seen a substantial number of project and parts cars appear on CL , at what I consider an attractive price and within a few days or a week the listing is gone. The ones that could be said to be overpriced remain up for months. 

 

 

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I'll add a bit to the great advice already posted.

 

It often takes a lot of time and effort to sell cars and parts, so first you may want to consider the amount of time and effort that you want to expend on this project.  Auctions can produce the fastest results with the least amount of effort on your part, but it comes at a cost (auctioneer commissions, etc.)  So there's the old "time vs. money" balance, too.

 

If you are willing to put in the time and effort, you may want to try selling a few of the cars yourself and see how that goes.  That experience may tell you how to sell the rest of the cars.  Also, consider breaking the group into smaller lots of cars and sell them as lots.  This may help you move some of the less-popular cars that may not sell on their own.  Cars of the same make and model could be another grouping, especially if they are the same year or are close and share the same components.

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Pretty sad reading really , proves the trend high cost of labour , parts and scarcity of same making restoration only a viable proposition to few cars . I know there are those who may disagree , but those are the  declining number of people who are capable with the skills and dedication to carry out the main restoration work themselves. There are such members on this forum and I envy and applaud them .

i hope the poster will enlighten us with details of his collection and hope he has at least a few gems that attract good prices that at least may compensate for  some of the money and interest he has devoted to his hobby 

 

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If you're serious about selling them with the most bang for the least amount of work auction them off. On the day of the auction, after the auctioneer has done all the work and advertising, sit in a comfortable chair with a cool beverage and enjoy the show. After it's over collect your check (and likely a 1099)

OTOH, you can spend your day dealing with low ballers, dead beats, tire kickers, no shows, and general s**t heads.......Times  25............Bob

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I figure a parts car is worth $200-$300. Add $250 to $300 for a Florida title. Running preferred.

ps here a car can be titled but not licensed if not driven on a road.

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It really depends on what you have and where you are at, if they are not as complete or desirable. I sold a 50 Ford, 48 Willey’s Jeepster and a 55 Chevy project. The Willeys went to someone on this forum and admittedly the sale was most likely a favor he did for me. One sold on eBay (55 Chevy) and the other in a local Facebook  group (Hill Country Antique & Classic Cars & Parts, TX) (50 Ford). 
 

I would create an eBay ad with a fair reserve and a lot of pictures (at least 30, the more the better) inside, outside, underneath, detailed pics of any parts that go with it and a very detailed description (Does it have rust, damage, what is missing, included?) Then post the eBay link here and on appropriate Facebook car groups and Marketplace. This saves so much time recreating the listing. There are lots of regional antique car FB groups and many national groups for various types of cars. Use the search bar to find the groups. (Words like 50 Ford, shoebox, Oregon antique cars, Portland classic cars, etc). Once you join several groups, it’s easy to share the listing to various groups once it’s on Facebook. Possibly attend local car shows with pictures and a flyer with detailed info to show guys with similar cars who may know someone or themselves want it. 
 

Exposure is key. It may take a little longer and you may need to renew the eBay listing a few times or even pause them and relist a few weeks later, but I sold those three a couple years ago, each within a couple months. I also sold many other cars, of various stages of restoration the same way. Not to mention tractors, parts, trailers tools, etc. Which I didn’t list on eBay, but did sell with the help of Facebook Groups and Marketplace. 
 

I highly suggest you throw up a list here of what you have. I was reluctant to do that initially, but these guys helped me sell many of my dads classics. They helped me gain an understanding of what each car was when I shared pictures and gave me a lot of good advice. Only a few guys seemed to have lowball opinions of value so I’d ignore any advice that the cars were not worth much without more detail from you, though. There are many guys here who will give you an honest assessment, just look at the advice as a whole and not any one person’s opinion. 
 

Properly marketed and by researching similar sold listings, you can find a fair price for about any decent project. 
 

best of luck!

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Posted (edited)

Also @f.f.jones, you have a lot of good advice here. Share some pictures and we can better advise if these are truly projects worth time and effort or parts cars worth a few hundred dollars. One person’s project is another person’s parts car. 
 

The ones I sold had most of the required parts, new paint and/or interiors that needed to be installed. Someone was actually working on them and they just needed to be finished. 

Edited by victorialynn2 (see edit history)
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Regardless of how well preserved the sheet metal is, these cars are nothing but parts car today. Outside in Eastern Washington the relentless sun and dry conditions take their toll. These cars will need everything-full restoration or costly refurbishment. Some cars because of their make and model will have value, but so many will not. Publishing a list will give us an idea of what cars you have that might have value. Under normal conditions I would love to drive over and take a look, before it gets too hot, but I've been moving thirty plus years of stuff so taking a couple of days off is kind of a stretch right now.

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Also mentioned were trucks. Still quite a few people looking for 1950's and 60's truck project's. I would even say most of the current old vehicle interest is truck based.  So much easier than cars from the same era. Extremely simple construction. Minimal interior and brightwork. Around me they seem to sell very quickly if reasonably rust free. Make does not seem to matter. Close to 1/2 of them seem to end up on a later frame and power.

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I could be a player on a slant six pick up.

The grandson and I want to get one for his first vehicle.

He's almost eleven now so we want to get on it. 😄

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Really, nothing has changed since you bought, apparently, several or the cars. True, time has aged you, and me, but I’m fairly certain you can remember where, and why, each of the cars was bought. It appears that some, if not many of the cars sit where they were put, in the same condition as when they were bought. I’m betting that you can remember when, why, and maybe even from whom you bought the cars. It is most apparent that restoration of any particular car was secondary to the way it made you feel when you thought of owning it. That said, unless money is a issue, and the storage space is required for something more important, I’d suggest you enjoy the cars, and treat selling them as a adventure. I have two antique cars, and both were bought off Facebook Marketplace. Unsold car fanatics are a dying breed, and only a very narrow, and isolated audience, and financially able group of people will be interested. List them, as they are, with photos, on Facebook and relax. You own them, and they are still the treasures you bought.....if they survive you, they will eventually find a new home.

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