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



  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Posts: 1,828
    That Chevelle is right down the street from me. Too much money for me!
  • gsemikegsemike Long Island, NYPosts: 2,096
    Seriously right down the street from you??? I was just making a guesstimate on the price. Tell us the true story of the car that the pictures won't tell. This should be interesting for those of us that always wonder about ebay cars!
  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Posts: 1,828
    I ahven't SEEN the vehicle. I was just surprised that it was in the next suburb of Chicago.
  • I'd save the Lincoln... especially in California. It'd make a funky and probably profitable ride for a limo service.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Very iffy at $3,000. It's been so screwed with you'd pretty much have to take it apart to do anything with it.

    All you've have is a beater unless you tear it down, and for all that work you might as well just go buy a nice one for not a whole lot more money. You can get a clean '72 non-SS Malibu for $6,500 or so.

    If by some startling coincidence this car was "real" and could be proven as such, as a matching #s 350/350, well then it all turns around and you *might* come out okay, because a real SS350 can be worth $12K-15K.

    Very odd he gives neither VIN # nor data plate info. That should tell you something right there.

    SOOOOOO.....if not a real SS, SCRAP

    If a real SS, SAVE and do a front clip resto (firewall forward disassembly) and have yourself a nice SS driver.
  • ghuletghulet Posts: 2,628
    ...just by the even wear of everything on the car ('patina') and the fact that it has all the correct SS goodies a piecemeal/fake job might have left out (dash with gauges, correct hood with pins, interior emblems, graphite wheels, buckets, console, steering wheel, among others) that this SS is real. Of course, it wouldn't exactly shock me if it were fake; OTOH, I can't imagine why anyone would go through the trouble of buying all that stuff do put on a crappy Chevelle and then NOT finish it. We'll probably never know. Anyway, since the 'SS' was just an option and not a separate series in '72, I don't think there's any way to decode it by VIN alone. Of course, it's easy enough to see if the other numbers match. Or if you're lucky, the car still has its build sheet under the back seat. It really doesn't look too bad ('screwed with?'), it needs rust repair (or new fenders), paint and some detailing, but otherwise this looks as straight and complete as any 'restorable' car I've seen lately. I mean, it's not jacked up with big wheels and a trashed or transplanted interior like most old Chevelles I used to see. As a 'driver' and if the buyer didn't go crazy over-restoring, I'd definitely save it. Of course, the bidding is already up to almost $5k, so it's not exactly the bargain we thought it would be. Still, I'd save it.

    I'd also save the Lincoln limo mostly because of the price and relative rarity, though I don't know what the hell I'd do with that thing if it were mine. I doubt I could find a garage big enough to hold it. In concurence with everyone else here, that thing would be a chore to drive almost anywhere.
  • gsemikegsemike Long Island, NYPosts: 2,096
    Back in the day when Chevelles were more plentiful, I've seen some people do some pretty dumb things to real SSs.

    I had a 1970 small block that I did some dumb kid stuff to such as a cheapo fiberglass hood with snorkel hood scoop. It was nice, but man.... if I had it to do over again.

    I clearly remember somebody running around in a 71 or 72 SS with a scoop riveted onto the original cowl hood and radiused wheel wells with flares to squeeze in his Crager SSs. I'm not sure but it must have had an "[non-permissible content removed], Gas or Grass.. no one rides for free sticker" on it. Someone else that I met proudly told me how he had the frame on his 69 SS convertible painted floresent green although I didn't get to see that monstrosity for myself. In this context, this car is pretty damn respetable (although it's not a 70)

    This Chevelle here is over 30 years old. It could have been faked and restored 10 or more years ago and then degraded to it's current shape. That said, I agree with the previous post. If it's a fake, it's a pretty good one with the interior emblems and appropriate exterior badges. $5k is getting pretty high though. Since it doesn't say otherwise, I'd assume that the numbers don't match.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Oh, I've seen all sorts of butchery, too. This may be 2 or 3 separate cars stitched together. Sometimes you can pick up a code on the dataplate that might tip you off to an SS. Apparently the market thinks an SS350 matching #s is worth something extra, as they price out almost double against the plain jane Chevelles. But it would have to be documented, matching # and a 350HP car or we are just blowing smoke with this one. No broadcast sheet, no window sticker, no warranty plate, no cigar.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Okay, let's try something a bit different. We'll look at projects without a price.

    You guys be the appraiser and offer an opinion as to what this project might be worth:


    1. Study the ad, and write down your estimate on a sticky note. Glue it to the computer.

    2. Make a post telling me you are "ready".

    3. Then, when I say go, we'll all post our prices. Of course it won't be in real time but if we're lucky the posts will all appear more or less in a string and we can compare prices easily.

    I'll wait until I get the "I'm ready" from 4-5 of you, maybe later today or tomorrow depending.

    If this works and it's interesting to you, we'll do it a few more times. Remember, don't post a price until you get the signal from HQ.
  • lemkolemko Philadelphia, PAPosts: 15,306
    ...scare me about this truck. I don't like the fact that it has a later Chevrolet motor and the wrong front end. The cab looks good, but the box looks rather shabby. Check out the rotted area near the left rear wheel. If this person was building a street rod, why the low-performance 305 versus a more appropriate 350 small-block?
  • 1racefan1racefan Posts: 932
    As lemko says, you wouldn't really be starting out with a whole heck of a lot. I don't think this is a project I would even want given to me for free.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Okay, then bid it low. It's got to be worth SOMETHING. Or put "free".

    Mostly I'm trying out this idea. We can pick a more suitable car for appraisal later. So play along as best you can.

    I gather the two of you are "ready" to post a price, so I'll wait for a few more.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,792
    but my Dad has a co-worker who has some old Model A truck that he was working on as a hotrod/restoration project. This guy did most of it himself, and was really proud of it. But for some odd reason, the engine he chose to put in it was a Chevy 305! And he rebuilt it himself, even! That just doesn't make any sense to me! I'm with Lemko on this one...what's up with the 305, versus a 350!?
  • Well maybe he just had a 305 laying about? Only reason I can figure to use it. Maybe he had plans on boring it out?

    By the way, I've got my bid ready.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    You have to remember that retro trucks are very hot right now (if you do them right).

    Maybe he got a cheap crate engine. Chevy power is very inexpensive.
  • The "transmission just needs to be hooked up" thing raises a big red flag with me.

    In my experience, if there is a reasonable thing that can be done to turn a car that isn't drivable into one that is, and it hasn't been done, there is more to the story than the seller is letting on.

    So many times I've seen a "just needs _____ done and she'll run great!" and there is a big reason THEY haven't done it.
  • ghuletghulet Posts: 2,628
    I always think it's funny when the seller makes claims to 'easy' or 'inexpensive' repairs. Well, if those repairs were so easy and inexpensive, why didn't you just do it yourself before you sold it, hmmm?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Let's post our estimated values, shall we?

    By "estimated value", what we are aiming for is what we think a reasonably sane person, under no pressure whatsoever, might pay for this "project" (not necessarily you and me, but "Them" out there).

    I think he could get $750 as is where is. That "rebuilt" engine looks kinda dusty, I dunno, but the parts should be worth that.

  • I'd bid $300. Might budge to $450 after fully checking it out.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,792
    a Chevy engine? I know it's hard to tell from the pic, but it looks like there's something in front like a long filler neck for the oil. The Olds Rocket had that, but every Chevy smallblock I've seen had the oil filler in the valve cover. Something about the valve covers just seems a bit different too.

    If that's an Olds 307 and not a Chevy 305, that's probably why the tranny's not hooked up. They won't mate up without an adaptor kit, as back then they didn't put in two sets of bolt holes to acommodate both Chevy and B-O-P patterns like they do today.

    I was gonna say $500. I think it might actually be restorable, and could make a cool truck. But I'd put a different engine in it, like a 350.
  • ghuletghulet Posts: 2,628
    I was going to say $500, too. I mean, how much is this thing worth properly (emphasis) restored? Right off, it's probably going to need a new bed and rear fenders, the engine/trans mating issue, then paint. I'm sure the interior is no prize, either. Not something I'd be interested in at any price, really.
  • 1racefan1racefan Posts: 932
    If it ended up being too much of a problem to restore, hopefully you could salvage it off and get the $500 back.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Okay anybody else want to jump in before we go on?
  • jlflemmonsjlflemmons Posts: 2,242
    Not absolutely sure, but I think that by color and layout that is an Olds 307. If it were an Olds 350, it would be gold color. Blue was the 307, IIRC.

    Big clues are the shape of the valve cover, big oil filler tube in the front, and the dist. in the rear.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,792
    what color the 307 was in my Grandma's '85 LeSabre, but I'm thinking it was black? I was thinking that the valve covers looked kinda Olds-ish, though. And from what little you can see of the spark plug wires, it looks like the plugs point upward on this engine, versus downward on the Chevy.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
  • ghuletghulet Posts: 2,628
  • and at the other end of the project car timeline... - - gory=6278&item=4505670755&rd=1

    Change the rims to something a little more understated and I'm interested at $10,000.......of course it has 9 days of bidding left though ;-)
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,792
    is a Chevy motor! ;-)
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Oh, the whole ad sounds like nonsense. Unless that Jaguar frame has railroad rails welded to it, you'd better NOT step on the gas. And the Porsche story? Well, if it was a 1/4 mile drag race, what do you expect between monstrous cubic inches and a 3.6 liter twin turbo car? How about the two of them at Laguna Seca? Goodbye Jaguar.

    anyway, on the positive side, very tidy installation! Commendable!

    On the negative side, a car nobody wants in stock form, and one that nobody can do anything with in this form.

    It's another $5,000 butchered XJ. The world is full of them. Hell, I'd buy it for the motor and put it into something appropriate, some big American iron. Sell the Jag body to someone building coral reefs, it's too screwed up to restore.
  • but the XJ's (even the series I's) aren't really doing much on the collector's circuit. So I rationalize it away as a car that's motor was so destroyed that it couldn't be saved. (It's the only way I can deal with someone intentionally dumping a great XK motor.)

    Anyway, like I said, at $10K, I'd still actually be interested in it.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    I've driven these V8s conversions, they are simply awful. They ruin the silky smoothness of the XJ and rip the guts out of the Jaguar frame. Buy a '67 Chevelle and be happy-- at least then you have a car that is suitable for a big block engine. A Jagolet is virtually unsaleable, it would be tough to unload on anybody for $10K--you'd have to do what the present seller is doing. Find someone who buys it on a lark, without them putting some careful consideration into what's what, and then cash the check fast.

    This car is a lot like some experimental films I've seen. It would have been more fun to just talk about it rather than actually do it.
  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    That's what America is all about -- choices.

    Personally, I love it. The lovely Jag body is complemented by a truly serious V8 conversion, and it sounds (from both the description and the previous owner) that it was thoughtfully done.

    The stock jag V12 is a boat anchor -- that is, heavy as a mountain without the power to go with it -- so a crate big-block (probably aluminum) may very well weigh significantly less than stock. I agree, the prodigious torque could bend stuff if the frame wasn't fortified, but any good engine/chassis builder would do that as a matter of course, or you'd never get the power to the ground.

    That said, I'd give it a thorough inspection...but if the interior and exterior look like the pix, and if the engine installation is as it seems, I'd buy it in a heartbeat.

    Oh, by the way, shifty -- ANY race is dependent on the course. I once had a buddy with a Chevelle SS ask me if I wanted to race him in my newly hotrodded Toyota truck. I told him, "Sure -- I get to pick the road." He gave me a crooked grin and said, "Oh, sure -- across a cornfield, right?" Right.
  • bumpybumpy Posts: 4,435
    Jeez... if you want to do something interesting with the Jag, put an RB26DETT in it. Sure, the rest of the drivetrain would disintegrate the first time you stood on it, but how many other people could claim to have a 'Jagline'?
  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    ANY engine conversion in a Jag improves it. The stock engines and transmissions are junk -- not to mention the electrical systems.

    The British are great at providing sweet-looking, elegant bodies with the internals of an 85-year-old quadraplegic. The combination of British styling with an American drivetrain results in the best of both worlds. And let us not forget -- these are only mechanical objects, not the Holy Grail. They are sacrosanct only to the degree that customers believe they are.
  • What? The XK inline six engine is one of the greatest production motors of all time. With a production life span of what, 40 years or so? Are you thinking only of the V12 models or what?

    You sure have been throwing around that "junk" word like nobody's business as of late ;-)

    * As I think about it, your favorite brand has only produced one production motor of equal to the XK motor in my opinion. I bet you can guess which one I'm thinking of.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Jaguar engines of that type are actually among the best in the world, very long-lived, and built from 1948 through the late 1980s, a longevity matched by very few powerplants in history. That's what makes a conversion to a Chevy V8 so dumb. They throw away the best part of the car!

    Of course, longevity alone is not evidence of a great engine (witness the dreary Buick V-6) but winning LeMans is. Never saw a Chevy V8 do that yet. Junk motors don't win LeMans. Even Ford bested Chevy in that department.

    So we must give credit where credit is due because the historical record justifies it.

    Calling a jaguar engine "junk" is a very hasty remark I think, given the illustrious history of the motor. It's simply not a fair statement given the evidence to the contrary. I wish to defend the honor of a great inline Six if I may.

    Ah, the old "choice" argument. Well there are good choices and bad choices. Sometimes freedom to act should be restricted, and this FrankenJag is one of those cases. I think the builder should be fined and a tracking collar should be placed on him to prevent him going near a toolbox for 6 months.

    Just kidding. But next time, builder, go tub a Camaro if you want to run Pro Street.
  • gsemikegsemike Long Island, NYPosts: 2,096 gory=6427&item=4506378553&rd=1

    This is a nice off-beat car for the era. I've always loved this car and think that this spoilerless and vinyl topped example is pretty cool.

    I'm not sure what the ceiling is on these because Formulas have less of a following than a Trana Am (maybe $10,000 to $12,000 I'm guessing).

    I think that this could be an awesome car, but I'm scared of a 30 year old car from New Hampshire. With a starting bid of $3,800 I'd walk but would love this for $2,000.
  • ghuletghulet Posts: 2,628
    The seller basically says it's a rust bucket, so I think $3800 is a bit dear as a starting point. After all, this is *supposed* to be an auction, right? This guy sounds like he really just wants to change it into a T/A clone (shame, really, that someone thinks a T/A clone is more desirable than a factory Formula), but is being forced to list it by a boss or spouse or something. Production of '70 Formula=7708, compared to 3196 TAs, so it's still fairly rare. It is remarkable that it's all original, down to the AM radio; not too many survivors of this ilk this old. This is a low-option car, though (no A/C, no power stuff, no gauges, base interior, AM radio), so I guess nothing to get too excited about. Still, that $3800 doesn't give a whole lot of wiggle room to restore it.
  • gsemikegsemike Long Island, NYPosts: 2,096
    I think the fact that this car is a granny stripper makes it a little more unique while making it less imperative to keep it 100% original. I'm picturing it in deep blue with a perfect white top, some nice 17 inch aftermarket wheels, a little engine work....

    Again, at $3,800 it's a walk, but I do like this car and it's potential even though it is a lot of work. For $2 grand, it would be a go.
  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    my comment about Jag engines. Truly, the straight six in the E-type was a wonderful engine, and it provided power equal to many other cars more than twice its price at the time. Almost bought one (bought another Alfa instead, but I've always kind of wondered....).

    The engine I was referring to was the V12. Sorry, I may be off-base on this, but my personal and close-to-personal experience with this engine is that it's hard to maintain, produces little power relative to its mass, displacement and weight, and is outperformed by any number of garden variety, extremely reliable, V8s. In fact, Cherry Automotive Parts in Toledo, Ohio had a V12 block in its lobby as the base for a glass-topped coffee table. I asked the owner about it, and he said that's about all it was good for. (They are, or were, the major supplier of parts for imports within a 200-mile radius, which is why I was there -- I was looking for body parts for my 240Z.)

    I think one of the best indications of how good an engine is in the overall sense is how often it's used as a replacement powerplant in other cars. For years, European specialty carmakers used Chevy small blocks and Chrysler big blocks for their cars -- such as the jensen Interceptor, Facel Vega, Monteverdi, Bizzarini, Iso and others. That speaks worlds to me.
  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    seminole: sorry if I seem to be using the word "junk" a little too often lately -- it's not intentional, nor is it due to any crankiness on my part. I just don't share the same reverence for mechanical objects many of my fellow enthusiasts do, believing as I do that they are simply mechanical objects whose financial worth may be determined by an infamously ill-informed and fickle collectors market, but whose true worth lies only in the pleasure they bring to you personally. I am also a firm believer in anyone's right to do whatever he pleases with his personal property, no matter how it may shock or offend the general population.

    The entire reason I never bought a Jag is because of its long-standing reputation for building cars that wouldn't start or would leave you stranded -- particularly on a rainy day, which is the least convenient time to be stranded. The only problem I ever had with my Alfas was their appetite for head gaskets, and I honestly believe the responsibility for that rests squarely on my shoulders, for driving them the way I did. On the other hand, I've driven all my Toyotas that way, and they NEVER fail. Derive from that whatever you will.

    As for great Toyota engines, in addition to the 7A-FE used in the Supra TT, the 4A-GE in all of its various iterations was a truly monster motor for its displacement, and is still used today in 240-hp form as the spec engine for the Toyota Atlantic Series. I found this engine to be every bit the equal of my Alfas in terms of smoothness and willingness to rev, and by far their superior in terms of strength, durability and performance enhancements. The 22R used in the Toyota truck was also a wonderfully robust engine, whose only weakness was the head gasket (a problem long since addressed).
  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    Hey -- how about sliding a 7A-FE into that Jag? Traditional styling with an upgrade to an inline 6 of modern design, with 1000 hp potential. Hmmmm.......
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Most of jaguar's problems was not the engine itself but the stuff attached to it...when the engine doesn't start that's the electrical, when it overheats that the poor radiator design, etc etc.

    So that's why people differ on this subject I think.

    Even the propensity of the V-12 to catch fire (which it likes to do) is really a matter of lousy engineering.

    There aren't many endemic internal failures in Jaguar engines, and like I said, Chevrolet never won Lemans---that's a 24 hour beating, so those Jag engines (much more stock then, then Lemans engines today) can't be TOO bad. People used to DRIVE their cars sometimes to Lemans, race them and go home--LOL! Imagine trying that today!

    7A-FE would be too weak for that car I think. Bottom ends can only take so much, you'd have to radicalize it and that's $$$.

    Maybe a Supra engine, or a BMW I-6, both outstanding powerplants and the right # of cylinders without too much racket and vibration.
  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    Excuse me all to hockey sticks and back...I meant to say the 2JZ-GTE (the later Supra motor). It has a bottom end that will hold up a house. The only problem is finding one for a decent price.
  • That is the motor that I think of as a modern day XK motor. Solid, sturdy motor with good power.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Holy crap! We all agree on something!!
  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    we'd better change the subject quick or we'll all be singing kumbayah...!! =D
  • gsemikegsemike Long Island, NYPosts: 2,096
    This board has been pretty quiet lately so let's see what you think of this repairable Prelude for $3,000 buy it now: gory=6259&item=4509062658&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW

    It seems like the seller is overstating the book for this car with this milage. According to, this car's private party value in "Good" condition is $7,600. The higher value is probably from a dealer in Excellent condition, but nothing with a salvage title rates an excellent.

    At $3,000, it's close. I'm wary whenever you seller rattles off the list of "easy" fixes. If they're so easy, why aren't they done yet? Nonethless, if I could do the work myself, I think that I may go for this. Would probably like it alot more at $2,ooo to $2,5oo.
  • michaellnomichaellno Posts: 4,300
    On the surface, it seems like a good deal, but I suppose the idea is that the buyer would put the money into the repairs and drive it into the ground.

    Not sure that there would be any point in trying to repair then resell it, what with the salvage title.

    I've got a guy at work who is doing something similar with a Porsche Boxster .. it's been in the shop for a couple of months now getting "repaired" -- I'll have to ask him how close he is to getting it back.
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