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Project Cars--You Get to Vote on "Hold 'em or Fold 'em"

Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
edited February 2017 in General
I'm going to post a link to a "project car" (only those with photos) and YOU get to vote whether or not the car should be saved or scrapped.

Take into account (and make the assumption) that the ASKING price is the price you must pay to get the car.


1. Take a look at the ad and photos and VOTE QUICKLY (ads expire!)

2. Vote "SAVE" or "JUNK" and tell us briefly why you'd do this if it were in your power.

3. After SEVEN votes, we switch to another ad.

4. Anyone can post a project car ad, IF it has photos and IF we are done with the 7 votes on the last car. Don't BUNCH UP THE ADS please! Give everyone enough time to vote on each car or this forum won't work.

First car coming up in post #2!



  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Okay, whaddya think about this for $1,000? (I'll vote last--I get to be the tie breaker if necessary)
  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,759
    SAVE the useful trim pieces and obscure bits

    JUNK the shell/chassis if no rodder etc wants it, it's a sad looking sedan, no upside, nobody will ever want to restore it.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    because I kinda like those things. The body actually doesn't look half bad. Heck, I've seen rustier cars where the seller would try to pass it off as "rust free"! ;-)

    Now I wouldn't put any serious money into it, but I'd say slap a starter on it, and a fresh coat of paint, and have fun with it for awhile, and then move on to something nicer. Of course, I'm also not about to offer up $1000 either, so I'm NOT putting my money where my mouth is!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    C'mon Andre, you're not following the rules (bad dog!). You HAVE to pay the asking price, so what's your vote if this car costs you $1,000?

    Vote So Far

    Undecided 1
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    that I think it should be saved, but I'm not gonna be the one to do it! I'm not enough of a '54 Plymouth fan to want it, but I just think it's not that far gone that it can't be salvaged by someone who likes them. If I really had a fetish for the '54 Plymouth, I'd probably go for it, but it just doesn't excite me.

    I guess what I'm getting at is that it's the car more than the condition. If you showed me something that really got me excited, in that condition, at that price, I'd jump on it in a heartbeat.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Well, that's why you vote. You are voting your preference.

    So I'm going to count you as a JUNK/SCRAP/PART OUT since you won't buy it, okay?

    Soooo, we have

    2 SCRAP/Part Out
    0 Save

    So far...
  • badtoybadtoy Member Posts: 343
    That is the same exact year and model my first wife bought for $40 in Ypsilanti, Michigan when we first got married. Needless to say, we were poor as churchmice, but the big green monster started on those bitter cold mornings when brand new, shiny cars wouldn't -- and was sold to one of our friends who relocated with it to Florida, where it is still probably running. Well, maybe not -- that was back in 1968.

    Anyway, for all its basic goodness, it was dowdy, slow, handled like a boat and had almost nothing to recommend it other than the fact that it was cheap and it started like clockwork. I'd pass....

    (By the way, you only buy parts for something you intend to restore, so I see no value whatsoever in this car.)
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Well maybe there was a convertible version of this car?? That might be worth restoring if it wasn't too far gone.

    Okay, so it's

    Scrap 3 votes
    Save 0 votes

    I'm going to vote SCRAP IT, so that 4-0 and the car loses (4 out of possible 7). Reasons are car is of very little collectible value, not very interesting, and pretty far gone for what it is. Also overpriced IMHO by about $750.

    Okay next car coming up!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Well a '55 Chevy might sound like a no-brainer for salvation, but then we have this one.

    Remember you gotta pay the price if you vote SAVE.

    Whaddya think?
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    we're gonna run into a problem here, because if voting "SAVE" means we're willing to pay the asking price...well who ever pays the asking price?!

    At this rate, I think just about every project posted is going to get the junk vote, so this thing is flawed. Unless you find some little old lady with a Hemi Barracuda in her barn that she wants to ditch because she doesn't like the fuel economy, none of these cars are going to be worth their asking price. For instance, just as that '54 Savoy is worth saving, so is this '55 Chevy. But NOT for $3000! Heck, I'd pay a grand for the Savoy before I'd pay 3 grand for this one!

    So, just going on asking price, junk it. And put the rims back on the IROC that they came off of.
  • ghuletghulet Member Posts: 2,564
    Let's see, sedan, six, no front bumper, in primer, for three grand. Uh, no. Could be a saver for the right price, but that definitely is not. Dump. And someone tell him (and all the other yahoos) that all Chevy wheels are not interchangable.

    I'm with Andre on the Chevy versus the Plymouth, at least that one's cheap and not been messed with yet, and who else will have one?
  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,759
    For 3 grand, SCRAP that Chevy for sure. That's nuts.

    The Plymouth is a bargain in comparison.
  • 1racefan1racefan Member Posts: 932
    Agreed - Scrap it!!!

    "And someone tell him (and all the other yahoos) that all Chevy wheels are not interchangable."

    I remember back in the early 90's, those yahoos used to put those same wheels on their lowered S-10 pick-ups.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Well we have to have the rule about paying the asking price because otherwise no one would vote unless they had all kinds of qualifiers on price. We would get bogged down on the car's value, which isn't the question. Just about ANYONE would save ANYTHING if the price is low enough.

    The point is that by voting JUNK at the asking price, you are saying that the car is not worth restoring at that price. You are making a judgment basd on the car itself and its worthiness, not just its value.

    And that's the exercise I'd like to practice here.

    As a compromise, I'll try not (nor should you) to post ads that are ridiculously and obviously overpriced, but rather ads where there is a chance that out of passion or nostalgia or whatever, someone might pay that price.

    Okay, here's another one coming up!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    This car has a "firm price" on it so no whining Andre.
  • 1racefan1racefan Member Posts: 932
    In the southeast, I see plenty of these SS's that come WITH a drivetrain and "decent" bodies for the same or less money. From my standpoint (and I hate these cars), when I think of an SS Monte, the coolest looking ones were the black ones. IF I were going to restore one, I would restore one to the color that I think looks best on the car. In this case, the entire interior would have to be gutted as blue/white wouldn't look too good with a black exterior.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    that one looks like it might have potential, provided the body really is all that the guy is saying. I'm a little leery though, when he mentions the tranny that had been in it, the 700R4. I think it's essentially a THM350 with overdrive, but I don't know if it's a physically bigger tranny than the 350, which may have required cutting into the floorpan and modding the frame to take it.

    And it also has junk wheels and tires, so to really get the whole effect, it needs an engine, tranny, and wheels. Plus the paint job.

    I do like the idea though, of having a decent body to start with, where you can decide what engine and tranny you want to put in. The G-body coupe is actually a pretty hot item among the rodders right now. I believe it's the smallest, lightest body-on-frame car GM has built, so that helps alot with performance. And in general, they're still popular cars anyway, as a lot of people still love the style of them.

    So I guess I'd sway towards "Save" on this one. Provided of course, that it's all the seller says it is. And I will admit that I'm a bit biased with these, as I've always loved that platform, and had 3 of them over the years (1980 Malibu coupe, 1982 Cutlass Supreme, 1986 Monte Carlo)
  • 1racefan1racefan Member Posts: 932
    But notice that the seller says tranny/engine will cost extra. I agree that the body does look pretty good. I would maybe (if I liked these cars) consider $2500 if it came with a drivetrain, and I wasn't that particular about what color it was.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Okay, we have 1 for 1 against.

    I'm voting NO on this one. He should have thrown in the engine and trans, it's stupid to withold those from the new owner. What I learned from this ad is that you don't "keep" part of the project. It's all or nothing!

    So it's 1 for, 2 against.

    Anyone else care to comment on this "project"?
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    is actually somewhat the reverse of a car I looked at a few months ago. That car was a 1980 Chrysler Cordoba LS. It had a drivetrain that had been hopped up pretty nicely...318 out of a '75 Dart, with the lean burn swapped out, a Torqueflite 727, and a rear-end with Suregrip out of a '69 or '70 Charger. This sucker sounded beautiful when you fired it up. Unfortunately, the body was rusting pretty badly, and these things are unitized, which makes it worse. The soft plastic panels that finished off the rear of the car were shot, and the front-end, which was somewhat reminiscent of Edura, was distorted. The interior also needed work. And the brakes were shot. But DAMN that engine sounded nice!

    Still, I think I'd rather have a nice, solid body that I could drop an engine into (and Chevy 350's are a dime a dozen) than a nice drivetrain that's in a body that might be falling apart in a few years.

    I wonder how much he'd sell the whole thing for, with the engine/tranny? Only Monte SS reference point I've had lately was one that's been for sale at a lot up the street from me, for awhile now. Here's a pic of it:
    I forgot what they had been wanting for it (I posted it awhile back) but they're down to $5750 now.
  • stickguystickguy Member Posts: 49,747
    I vote yes on the SS, although I agree that the price is a bit high, assuming that the body and interior is as nice as presented.

    For a project, I would be dropping in a fresh/better/different motor anyway, and body work can get expensive. Why pay for a drivetrain you don't want, if it is getting yanked anyway (assuming it would be crap to start with).

    I'm not ready yet for a resto project 9and it wouldn't be one of these), but I when I am, I will definitely start with the soundest platform I can, not a cheesey rust bucket.

    Actually, I want Overhaulin to come get my car, although the fact that I am in NJ and don't have a bomber to take works against me.

    2020 Acura RDX tech SH-AWD, 2023 Maverick hybrid Lariat luxury package.

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Okay so it's 2 to 2, Andre apparently abstaining.

    Let's get ONE MORE vote and then go on to another perhaps from someone else.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    ...abstinence! ;-) I thought you already had me down as a SAVE, Shifty?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Oh, just aren't assertive enough in these votes, Andre. I need you to slam your fist on the table here like you "mean it":)

    Okay, so Andre votes SAVE and we'll call it like that.

    Anyone have an interesting ad, with photos and a price, or if not, I'll post another.

    PS: I think that Monte is a loser at that price, but oh, well.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    for car ads? I mainly look at eBay, but how would you determine an asking price for an auction item?
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,245
    Junk it! They were mediocre cars with mediocre powertrains and blah styling.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • 1racefan1racefan Member Posts: 932
    One neat site is, but I haven't figured out how to just post a link for an individual car. Most links bring up a whole page of cars.
  • ghuletghulet Member Posts: 2,564
    ...on, which I just discovered, thanks to someone here (perhaps Nippononly?). In any case, lots of fun, another e-timewaster for me. Oh, and it has real estate, job listings, and some fairly explicit personal ads, some with photos even. 'Nuff said.

    I've found that craigslist is an especially good clearing house (in Chicago, anyway) for 'distress sale'-type cars. Y'know, broke kids with cars they've had since college, now sitting on the streets of Chicago, in danger of being towed away because they blew a head gasket or dropped a tranny and the owners can't afford to get them fixed. Lots of potentially decent $250 fixer-uppers. Of course, with these types of cars and owners, you often don't know what is REALLY wrong with the cars, or what's been neglected, or what's wrong in addition to what the owner discloses, so it's not unlikely you may be stuck with a $200 car that needs $2500 in repairs, only to be worth $1500 in the end.

    Back on topic. At $2500, it's very hard for me to get excited about a 20 year-old Monte clad in primer with no drivetrain. I love the endless 'all it needs is a coat of paint' refrains from those trying to sell what are basically rolling scrapheaps. The interior is not perfect, it's got a trunk full of parts, no factory wheels, no decals and no right side mirror, from what I can tell from four photos. Even if restored properly (at which point the new owner would be hopelessly buried), it would never be anything more than a Frankenstein. Scuh-RAP it.
  • lemkolemko Member Posts: 15,261
    ...on the Monte Carlo. This was the last generation of the Monte Carlo I really liked. I would be putting in my own upgraded powertrain as well.

    Though the vote was JUNK for the 1954 Plymouth, I'd have voted SAVE even at $1,000. The bodies were built by Briggs back then and last forever. I've seen these period Mopars sit in junkyards for 40 years and the bodies are still intact. Though they were dull cars then, they are uncommon enough to be interesting today. My grandfather had the more ungainly 1953 Plymouth.

    For the 1955 Chevrolet, I'd vote JUNK at that price. First of all, the car is a four-door sedan which isn't the most desirable body style. Second, I'd have to undo all the crap he did to the car. Third, the old Camaro wheels are a clear sign that this vehicle belongs to some mulleted yahoo.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    to do something similar to that Monte with my '82 Cutlass Supreme. It had a good, sturdy body, but the 231 died around the 73K mark. Well, I also had a '69 Bonneville, that had a great-running 400 (although it had a voracious appetite for starters) but the body was pretty banged up, and it was just a 4-door hardtop.

    I had fantasized about trying to put that 400 in the engine bay of the Supreme, but in the end common sense got the better of me, and I got rid of them both. Sometimes though, I wish I'd tried it!
  • jlflemmonsjlflemmons Member Posts: 2,242
    It was not a good car when new, and has little collectors value. The SS adds a little, but it looks like the numbers will be wrong on the engine/tranny. If all matched and ran, maybe 1500. But still just a $1500 beater, IMHO.

  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,759
    For the money, I'd junk the Monte. There's a really nice and well kept one of the same year and colors not too far from me for like $4500. It's money better spent.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Here's one for you to look at and judge:

    PS: IF you want to post Ebay project cars, pick cars with the "Buy It Now Price" and we'll assume that's the price.

    For craigslist, you can find project cars by typing "project" into the search window.

    Other sources would be, and click on the "collector car" tab. You can assume that the asking price is the price.

    Trick is to pick projects that are kind of borderline, so that we will actually have to give it some consideration. Cars that are 99% done or 99% trash aren't as much fun.

    I'll throw this one is as a joke. Don't vote on it unless you are really crazy.
  • 1racefan1racefan Member Posts: 932
    My buddy just bought this same year/model with 93,000 miles on it for $3500. Car was really sound mechanically, and the body was really good, but the paint was faded.
    I have said scrap the other cars so far, but I will go out on a limb here and say Keep this one. IF and I say If you are willing to dig thru junk yards and spend time on the internet looking for good, inexpensive replacement parts, and if you have the mechanical ability to replace and fix most of this cars problems, you could probably get enough use out of this car to justify the amount of $ you put into it. On these older luxury cars a lot of times you can really be taken to the cleaners on something as simple as a replacement power seat motor. However, if you are not in a rush to restore it, and can take the time to search for good, inexpensive replacement parts, it might be worth it.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    the Lexus. If it would start up and run, I'd take the chance, but that's the one thing that worries me. I could deal with the body damage, and even the torn interior. But the not-starting thing is the killer, for me at least. And I'm imagining that this thing is NOT like that Monte, where replacement engines and trannies are a dime a dozen!

    Scrap the Buick, too. I'd actually like to see something like that be saved, because I know they have to be really rare by now, but I'm not gonna be the one to put my money up for it!
  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,759
    I don't know about the Lexus...depends on why it doesn't run. You can get a worn but roadworthy one for the cost of a few repairs on that one plus the asking price, so it's hard to say. If it needs any significant engine work....scrap it.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Seem to me that if the Lexus ran it would say so. I'm very suspicious of the ad on that basis. What does it take to slap on a pair of battery cables?

    I'm with Andre on this one, SCRAP it.

    In fact, even for FREE this car would not be worth the trouble to re-hab, based on the premise that it isn't going to run very easily, that it will need some digging into.

    So based on how it sits and the price on it, I don't personally see the point of fixing it.

    The Buick goes without saying. If this were a very rare piece of American history, sure, but really you can buy cars like this ready and running for under $20,000. Might be worth saving the motor and trans, however, if they aren't rusted into oblivion. Also you can use a few body parts as models to re-make panels on a nice car that might have something missing.
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Member Posts: 1,696
    real iffy to me. If it was something simple like a starter, or if it cranked over but didn't start, maybe but if your iffy up front about it, that ain't a good sign.

    I say scrap.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    to swap a Chevy 350 into one of these? ;-) Is that as sacreligious as when you do it to a Jag?
  • lemkolemko Member Posts: 15,261
    ...on the Lexus until I went back and read the "won't start" part. It could be something as simple as replacing the battery or starter or it could be something as sinister as a seized engine. The ad is too vague. I could deal with the body damage and torn interior as the car would make a pretty good beater car. I'd say "JUNK" due to the vehicle's inability to start and fierocious expense to get it back into operating condition.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Besides, they are complex and expensive cars to fix.

    Okay, here's another one: This could be tough to figure, but give it a try.
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Member Posts: 1,696
    at $7,500, I walk. '58 isn't near as popular as the 55-57's and for $7,500 I think I could do better than a project car. I think I have some sort of mental block about spending much more than 4 grand on a project or "tinkering" car.
  • lemkolemko Member Posts: 15,261
    ...the car has too many mods to restore it back to original condition. Looks like an aborted street rod project.
  • 1racefan1racefan Member Posts: 932
    I love the way the seller photographed it wet to make it look "extra shiney".
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    What's a fully done, non-stock '58 Chev Impala street rod worth anyway?

    Hard to say because modded cars are valued mostly on the quality of the work.

    But let's figure $12,000-$15,000 for a real nice job.

    Can you get from THIS to THAT with this project car for $7,500??
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    but I don't know at this point. I do remember, for a brief moment in the late 80's or early 90's, '58 Impalas were actually commanding a higher price than '57 Bel Airs! Or maybe that was just the convertible?

    Aah, what the hey. I'm gonna go out on a limb and vote SAVE. I've always liked the '58 Impala, even as a little kid. Always preferred it to the '55-57 Chevies.
  • shiphroshiphro Member Posts: 62
    I'm not in a position right now to have a 'project' car. I will be in a few years and I'll have a tough decision to make.

    But here in the northeast, old american iron is hard to come by. Road salt, rain and limited space have worked together to destroy almost everything older than 15 years or so. Around here a Fiero is a classic collectible. ;)

    So even something as 'plebian' as a '58 (not '57? gasp) Chevy could turn a lot of heads if it was cleaned up.

    Save it.
  • gsemikegsemike Member Posts: 2,238
    I've always loved this car since American Grafitti but it is a lesser can than 55 to 57. This seller has done some nice work already but there is still a long way to go. I'd vote WALK at $7500. Notice that there are no pictures of the interior or floor?

    I'd put the higher and at $20k for this, but it would be cherry for that much.
  • bumpybumpy Member Posts: 4,425
    I think the real warning flag on that Lexus is the "Theft Recovery" tag, which equals curb-jumping, cop-chased joyride and all the myriad little gremlins that come with that. I wouldn't touch it unless I had another one on hand to use as a parts car (or vice versa). &item=4502397688&category=6251&sspagename=WDVW

    I think this one is worth saving, depending on the reserve ($1000 or maybe as high as $1500 if it is as rust-free as the Arizona locale implies). The true wideside bed has to be pretty rare on a pre-1960 GM truck. I'm tempted to bid on this one myself, put in the Muncie 318 it probably had to begin with, and drop in a GMC 305 V6 if it would fit. Sadly, I don't have anywhere to keep it out of the weather long enough to finish the 3-4 other projects I have lined up already.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    on that '59 GMC pickup. However, I would ditch that S-10 frame that comes with it! The idea of putting a full-sized pickup from an era when before they learned how to roll paper-thin sheetmetal down on the frame of a compact truck that probably has the GVWR of a modern 4-cylinder Accord just doesn't set too well with me!

    As for theft recovery, I was a little leery of that, too. One of the biggest POS's I had was a 1988 Chrysler LeBaron turbo...a car that had been stolen several times while in my (well actually my ex-wife's) possession. I've often wondered if one reason it crapped out so badly later in its life was the joyrides?
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