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Definition of Project car?

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  • Definition of Project car?

    So I go to look at a low buck car yesterday and ... I should really learn to ask what stage of project a "project car" is in.

    Needs motor to me means car is there and reasonably complete, expect to replace a bunch of hacked wiring and stick your engine in it.

    I was a bit surprised - the project car in question had not one bolt remaining in the unibody as far as I could tell. Doors, glass, rear, k frame, pretty much everything was in the shed in the back.

    It's my fault for not asking... and I responded fairly quickly with "Need something a little more of a Roller". The car looked good though if it came with an assembly line manual maybe.

    maybe "call with any questions" , I should have spent a few more minutes on the questions!
    Flying south, with a flock of bird dogs.

  • #2
    Haven't herd from you in a while... or haven't I been paying attention? Good to see you round.

    The last one I looked at that fit the description was a 68 firebird and had both rear 1/4's taken off for "full factory 1/4's". I don't think they had any idea where to stop or begin. The car is still sitting there and will sit there till he gets his price. 6 or 7 thousand as I remember. I would not touch it for any price.

    Last edited by rightpedal; April 16, 2011, 04:35 AM.
    Well I have stopped buying stuff for cars I don't own. Is that a step in the right or wrong direction?


    • #3
      I've been around this thing of ours a very long time. Seems there's no shortage of disassembly experts.


      • #4
        My fav line is "easy resto project"...when I see that I don't even either indicates to me the owner doesn't know his ass from a hole in the ground or it has been sitting in a junk yard baking in the sun for 35 years the engine is seized, trans is unknown, interior is gone, pack rats ate whats left of the wires.. I honestly believe people watch WAY too much TV, they buy a project and once the really find out whats involved they crap their pants and sell as a "project"....after that long winded ramble my suggestion is to be more thorough on the phone...
        If you can leave two black stripes from the exit of one corner to the braking zone of the next, you have enough horsepower. - Mark Donohue


        • #5
          they're all projects..


          • #6
            To me a project car is any car that needs work to be drivable. That can range from what Beagle found (good to hear you back, Beags!) to a fairly nice car either missing something (trans, maybe) or in some other way dead. A buddy and I once bought an Olds Vista Cruiser wagon that only needed a HEI module to operate. We stuck it in and drove it from Connecticut (where's spell check?) to his Sis in Florida without incident. Great car. Maybe that's a pretty broad definition?



            • #7
              I am the wrong guy to ask, to me its a decent project if there is a bit of cowl and roof left. A project to me isnt even a parts car to most people. I think its a disease or mental condition..

              I know one thing though, I wouldnt buy a car in the same shape as my Mustang for what I want out of it. Of course if someone does want it, I will finish the metal work, get it in primer, and put a front suspension back under it. Then they can have the rest of the parts to build it as they like, and they would be starting with a solid foundation. It scares off the armchair car guys quite well. So does them hearing that the rusted black car is worth more than anything in the yard.. lol.


              • #8
                thanks guys... LOL @ Groucho - that sums it up perfectly. This one was my fault for not asking, but seriously, if you don't have a suspension under it and don't have a forklift, exactly how in the hell do you think it's going to get on the trailer?

                Todd, armchair is one thing. I can handle it once it's here with no suspension, but seriously... I'd like to be able to get it on the trailer at the buyer site without having to recruit the local boy scout troop.

                As long as I'm on a Craigslist rant, why is it people
                a) won't list a number
                b) won't remove their fu*ing advertisement when the product is sold
                c) don't have the common courtesy for a return mail / call ?

                The guy who's Mustang I went to look at was very good, called me back immediately and all, I just thought it was funny what constitutes "project" and how understated that phrase can be.
                Flying south, with a flock of bird dogs.


                • #9
                  Well..i like to get most out of nothing..that means my project doesnt have to have a suspension,if im going to change all that to better doesnt have to have a engine if i should replace it doesnt have to have a interior if im gonna rip it out..alot of the nice custom projects that have been built,could have been built from a roof and a pair of quarter panels from the beginning..why start with a good sound rustfreecar,if you are gonna throw away most of the parts?


                  • #10
                    I know exactly what you mean, and buying a car in pieces is asking for problems. That is why I always offer to finish the car if someone wants it. I will build it the way they want it, kinda like Burger King, you get it your way.

                    By armchair types I dont mean 99% of the people here, I mean the people who come in my yard, start poking around my stuff, walking through buildings, and then want to offer me $500 for my GTO, or $250 for my 72 455 HO Formula. I get them all the time and it is annoying at the very least. These are the people who are interested in cars but have neither the skills needed nor the funds to actually build one. If they bought one of my cars, project or not, it would only sit in their yard and rust. So having it as a bare shell in the shop keeps them from bothering me again, week after week.

                    I think the big difference is I am not advertising my cars, people just stop and bother me about them. That is why all summer they are hidden in the shed we store boats in for the winter. This time of year is the worst because the snow isnt covering them, the boats are all in the shed, and people can see my yard easily. Everyone who drives by is looking in the yard, either at boats or at cars. If I actually want to sell one, I have no problem getting what I want for them, because I know where to offer them. There arent many people around here who can afford to own a muscle car, sure lots of them want one, but they have no place to work on it, no skills, and you need a second car for the winter up here. It cant be a daily driver except between mid May and early October.

                    I agree with Blazer, why buy a perfect car that is done just to rip it apart and throw it all away? I guess its so they can do it in a couple weeks and not have to fix rust, but it is just wasteful to me.


                    • #11
                      what I call a project car is a car i dont like anymore and would like to project it off a cliff
                      Charles W - BS Photographer at large


                      • #12
                        A better question is, when does a car STOP becoming a project car?
                        58 Plymouth Sport Suburban. 526 cubic inches of angry wedge! Pushbutton shifted 9 passenger killer!!"


                        • #13
                          Every project car I've bought over the years could at least move under it's own power. All of them were unmolested and mostly complete. I admire those guys who can find a stripped shell of a car that's been sitting in the desert for 40 years and turn it into something awesome.
                          Just groovin' to my own tune.