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Old 07-07-2018, 09:36 AM   #1
Bob Bidonde
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Default Cos of A Restoration

Here's the scenario:
1. 1931 Model "A" Town Sedan;
2. Body off the frame touring class restoration;
3. Full restoration to original with exceptions for touring reliability, and uses reproduction parts. No crazy $$$ for original parts;
4. All metal fenders & aprons;
5. Strip body & frame to bare metal. Patch panels in cowl, both fender wells, and bottoms of doors professionally installed. All body assembly by owner;

6. Frame only requires weld filling of extraneous holes & painting;

6. New wood kit installed by owner;

7. New roof installed by owner;
8. Upholstery kit & carpets installed by owner;
9. All mechanical restoration done by owner;

10. Short block engine from Skokie, Illinois;

11. Single stage urethane paint on body, fenders, etc. by professional;
12. New window safety glass.



What do you think will be the ballpark cost of this restoration.
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Old 07-07-2018, 10:06 AM   #2
Gary WA
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

$27,465.32 Plus your labor.
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Old 07-07-2018, 10:28 AM   #3
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

A lot of money !!!!
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Old 07-07-2018, 10:51 AM   #4
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

How long is a string? I just sandblasted a pair of A fenders for a man that has a little body shop in my building.One looked real nice,with some dingles and bends here and there.I have a jig using the front half of a frame,fender brackets,headlight bar,and fixtures to simulate the running board joints.He put that fender on there and spent over 10 hours making it right.He was picking,filing,shrinking,heating,cooling,but it came out nice.The opposite fender had a big bash in the side,he spent less than two hours on that one to make it right.I don't know how anybody could come up with an estimate on body repair without seeing it.
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Old 07-07-2018, 10:58 AM   #5
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary WA View Post
$27,465.32 Plus your labor.

Gary, Dog here,
UR you copying Ol' Bills' kind uf FICTICIOUS NUMBERS?
Buster T. Dog
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Old 07-07-2018, 11:02 AM   #6
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

It'll cost a "FORTUNE" plus a little MORE---NLOL---You'll "probably" have to sell your favorite TRUCK, to finish it!!!
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Old 07-07-2018, 11:07 AM   #7
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

Better consider it a hobby. Because you would probably not get your investment out of it if you sold it.

I put about $25K into my huckster without doing all the things you want to do.
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Old 07-07-2018, 11:47 AM   #8
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

The body work and paint job you describe is about $20k here at a pro shop.

The other parts and services you are going to need (engine, engine accessories ...generator, starter, carb, etc...interior kit, suspension, brakes, trim pieces, chrome, tires, wheels blasted and painted/coated, radiator, glass, etc)...about $15k.

I generally estimate too low on my projects so you may want to add in some more just to be on the safe side.

The car won't be worth what you have in it, but this is a hobby...not a profit making business. If building the car is how you enjoy your time and money it is exactly the right thing to do .
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Old 07-07-2018, 12:10 PM   #9
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

It all depends if you do most or almost all the restoration yourself. I have restored a 28 special coupe (97% complete and a 29 phaeton (about 65% done) and part of a 29 CCPU (about 40% done). At the end of the restoration I will probably have $14K or $15K in the vehicles as I do almost all the restoration work myself as a hobby. Of course if you hire professionals, the cost would probably be at least triple what I have in the cars. Just my input.
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Old 07-07-2018, 12:14 PM   #10
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

$90,000
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Old 07-07-2018, 12:22 PM   #11
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

It’s like owning an old wooden boat.

There is an old saying. “It’s like a fart in the room, you can smell it, but you can’t get your arms around it”.

What ever you figure, you will spend more!

It’s a hobby. Enjoy.
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Old 07-07-2018, 01:05 PM   #12
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

The cheapest way to own a restored car, is to buy one that's finished, if you can ever consider one finished. The fellow I bought my 29 from last year had $16,500+ receipts from 1995. According to a website, $16,500 in 1995 is equivalent in purchasing power to $26,502.42 in 2017. I estimate the car will take about $3,500 to complete (interior etc).

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Old 07-07-2018, 01:25 PM   #13
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

$27,465.32 Plus your labor.



you forgot that Bob is in LI NY


double it...................!
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Old 07-07-2018, 01:40 PM   #14
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

I did a detailed spreadsheet on this a couple of years ago and came to the conclusion it was best to buy one finished or almost finished. Start there and do a little fine tuning to make it what you want. The only exceptions are when you want something to spend your personal time on or if you have a sentimental attachment to he car (it belonged to your father, etc).

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Old 07-07-2018, 02:03 PM   #15
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

$30k
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Old 07-07-2018, 02:08 PM   #16
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

I NEVER added up my parts INVOICES (SCAREY!)--Partly because I always ordered DOUBLE quantities---REALLY!
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Old 07-07-2018, 02:22 PM   #17
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

In January, I bought a nice 20 footer, 1930 coupe, new engine, new brakes an older restoration but drives great. I drive about 600-700 a month with it and have not had any troubles, 3200 miles so far.
Entered it in the local 4th of July Parade and got best antique car ribbon and a nice Judges Choice trophy. Yes there are a few rock chips and minor paint issues, I paid $9100 and most pleased.
I believe it is much cheaper to buy a restored one than to restore it. The money you save will take you on a lot of tours or Hawaii a number of times. JMHO
Gerry Allen Birch Bay WA
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Old 07-07-2018, 04:02 PM   #18
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

time wise it is going to take at least a 1000 hours to do, if you really restore it. now add the parts. Buy one already done unless you just want to do it.
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Old 07-07-2018, 04:13 PM   #19
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

The body shop owner who did my mom's '30 coupe said one of his trade magazines said you should expect a restoration to cost twice what you will be able to turn around and sell the car for.
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Old 07-07-2018, 04:23 PM   #20
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

The old rule of thumb..... if you have to ask... you probably cannot afford it applies here too.
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Old 07-07-2018, 04:47 PM   #21
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

How much money do you have. It will cost twice that much.
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Old 07-07-2018, 04:56 PM   #22
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

Professional paint job by a good shop in the SF Bay area will be close to $20K if they do all of it with modern technology and correct colors. (Plus or minus big numbers)
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Old 07-07-2018, 05:55 PM   #23
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

I'll go with George, $90,000.00. You cannot do a complete restoration on a model A for under $100,000.00 if you count your time as being worth more than a nickel an hour.
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Old 07-07-2018, 08:43 PM   #24
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

I have over $60K in my recent 190A restoration accomplished as I state in the initial post. The maximum my insurance company will insure the car for is $45k. There is no way a reasonable restoration can be done within the selling price of a Model "A."
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Old 07-07-2018, 09:12 PM   #25
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

If you have done another car in the same manner as you stated in your initial post, you have a much better idea of the probable total cost than our estimates.

Why did you ask us?
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Old 07-08-2018, 06:34 AM   #26
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

You guys must be made of money. Everything on the list, 488 points MARC Touring Class, 20K.
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Old 07-08-2018, 07:04 AM   #27
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You guys must be made of money. Everything on the list, 488 points MARC Touring Class, 20K.
Nice looking car!
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Old 07-08-2018, 07:28 AM   #28
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

It's the same with projecting how long a task will take. My wife said that she would take the time estimate I gave her, multiply by 2, add 1/2 and not be disappointed when it is not finished on schedule.
I am so happy that I have misplaced a lot of receipts along the way. As Sergeant Shultz would say, "I know nothing!"
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Old 07-08-2018, 09:22 AM   #29
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

I'm insured with Hagerty and they work on a agreed value on the car. Then you pay per thousand. That way you have replacement cost instead of market value of the car. As per your original question 80,000 - 90,000 if a restoration shop is doing the work. A Body shop will paint the car when they have the time and the details won't be there. Body Shops do Collision work, Restoration shops restore cars. My way of thinking.
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Old 07-08-2018, 09:29 AM   #30
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

The intent of my question re cost of a restoration is to rank the cost of mine with others. I think that the $60K plus cost of restoring my Victoria is not extreme, and I did all of the work myself except for the body work, paint and short block engine.



I started with a running car that had a poorly done prior attempt at a restoration. The cost of my restoration includes the purchase price of the Victoria which was less than $7K. Also the original wood in my car is in excellent condition, so it was not replaced.


Unfortunately, a bout with cancer prevented me from doing the body & paint work myself. That likely would have reduced the restoration cost maybe $10K.



I agree that it is wiser to buy a car that is restored in lieu of doing a complete restoration on a barn find. I also conclude that investing money into restoring antique cars is generally not a smart thing to do unless the car is extremely rare in some manner. I would also advise anyone planning a restoration to find out how much the finished product can be insured for.


Thanks all to those who contributed figures.
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Old 07-08-2018, 04:18 PM   #31
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

You will be upside down faster then two shakes of a lambs tail.
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Old 07-08-2018, 07:37 PM   #32
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Then after all is said and done,you take your hard work,labor love /money pit and give to somebody else to render their opinion of it and give you 'points'...It boggles the mind why any sane man would do that.

From the lowest rat to a 500 point car they all have one thing in common...their owner is proud of their car..it serves the brotherhood to honor that pride,respect the artist even if you dont like his art.I believe the hobby is evolving,the next generation will bring different goals and desires..but one thing is constant,the car will endure.
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Old 07-08-2018, 08:37 PM   #33
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

Depends on many things and what challenges you face along the way. My biggest expense is parts. Paint can be bought cheaply if you buy returned paint (either the unused paint or paint that was tinted the wrong colour) and tint it to suit your needs. Upholstery, well in the past i've been lucky enough to find the fabric I wanted in junk stores or the last meter or so roll at a upholstery shop that they wanted to get rid of ect.
Checkbook work, as in rolling up to a shop & paying someone to do everything normally costs as much as a deposit on a house.
Doing it yourself, maybe as much as a used car.
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Old 07-08-2018, 09:51 PM   #34
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You will be upside down faster then two shakes of a Lambs tail.
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Old 07-09-2018, 09:23 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BILL WILLIAMSON View Post
I NEVER added up my parts INVOICES (SCAREY!)--Partly because I always ordered DOUBLE quantities---REALLY!
Bill Cheap



Not so sure about buying double quantities but I agree NEVER ADD UP THE INVOICES!
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Old 07-09-2018, 09:50 AM   #36
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

to start: a proper brake & hub / bearings rebuild will cost $3000 in parts.
normally: you will spend $30,000 on a driver rebuild... and can't sell it for more than $15k.

it's just a BOAT (Break Out Another Thousand )
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Old 07-09-2018, 10:11 PM   #37
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

Quote:
Originally Posted by TomballMottershaw View Post
to start: a proper brake & hub / bearings rebuild will cost $3000 in parts.
normally: you will spend $30,000 on a driver rebuild... and can't sell it for more than $15k.

it's just a BOAT (Break Out Another Thousand )

$3000 in parts and you rebuild it yourself or $3000 ready to install?


I see Mikes has ready to install brakes, hubs, bearings ready to install $2280 all four corners.
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Old 07-10-2018, 08:26 AM   #38
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

Having a clear vision of what you are building coupled with a little skill and a whole lot of luck keeps the cost down. Quality used 'once restored' parts are out there,and can be picked up for a fraction of what the vendors charge.
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Old 07-10-2018, 08:34 AM   #39
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Hi Mike V. Florida,
re: $3000 for brake parts... Mikes' has "most parts" for $2280....

I guess you have not rebuilt or viewed the video's available on A brake jobs.
there are a lot more parts to a brake rebuild job than the 4 corners.
pedals, linkages, cross shaft, front link arms are $100 each...
not to mention E-brake parts.
& for Mikes deal:....you have to ship your 4 "cores" back to him too: another $200

so if you budget $3000... you will make your budget, that's success.

... and the $2280 does not include shipping... that's normally +15% of the cost.

but $5000 for brakes is cheap, compared to have your head pushed into the dash via the hole in the steering wheel, and legs around the gear shiftier.
... as most of our health insurance only covers some stuff, after $10,000... of ER bills.

The goal it to drive them and stay alive:
Just make sure your brakes can lock up your tires.... and practice panic stops, at speed so you know how well our car performs.
& if you won't do it for your own safety... please, to reduce my insurance costs & make it easier on your loved ones, wear a seat-belt.
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Old 07-10-2018, 05:48 PM   #40
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

I'm not sure from your question if your car is a straight windshield or slant window fordor - the slant window would obviously represent a lower cost project (I have helped my nephew some on his slant window fordor, in return for his help on my straight windshield Briggs Town Sedan). I finished my '29 Town Sedan in 2015, having completed the restoration in a series of "on again - off again" starts and finishes for the ten year period prior to that. I did powder coat all of the running gear and all other "black" castings, and had a high-temperature coating applied to the exhaust manifold. I also sandblasted the body, primed it myself, purchased a partial wood kit for about $800, and with the exception of the wood in the doors, replaced all of the wood with the help of my nephew, and then primed and blocked the body four or five times before turning it over to a professional painter for completion. From there, I purchased all new fenders, hood, splash aprons, running boards, headlights, cowl lights, radiator shell, stainless bumpers, etc. I also wound up purchasing another cowl section and cowl band in order to conver this car from a standard fordor to a Town Sedan (good re-usable cowl bands for '29 cars are also getting extremely hard to find), and had any remaining plating one to include the dome light, door latches (I know, these were not originally plated, but...), etc. As far as mechanical parts go, I rebuilt a "B engine" so as to get the heavier crank, used all new transmission gears, rear axle ring and pinion gears, all new races, bearings, and seals, all new steering sector and worm gear, new cast iron brake drums and woven linings, and Flathead Ted's brake parts, an original re-cored radiator, all new glass, stainless muffler, etc., etc. I used PPG single stage paint, and paid the painter another $5,500 to do final blocking, and finish the paint. As for the interior, I purchased the Bedford Cord from Lebaron Bonney along with new carpets, seat springs and top materials, and used another supplier for the remaining interior headliner and door panel materials. Although I was quoted a much lower price when the upholster began, the final labor charge for installing the interior package wound up at $7500, plus another $500 to install the top (exclusive of materials costs).

I built this as a tour car that I would feel comfortable driving most anywhere that I would ever care to go, but I also appreciate having a nice car. So far, it has never failed to draw a crowd given the care and detail that went into the restoration of this car. With that said, I would estimate that doing a car along these lines would run something in the $30K+ range, exclusive of the car acquisition costs (which is perhaps another reason why it took the better part of ten years to complete).

Since completing this car, I have purchased a '31 slant window cabriolet. This car is a nice original car that I acquired from the family of the second owner, but it will still need a thorough cosmetic restoration and brake work (the engine is quiet and runs well, and engine rebuilders in the area have told me to "leave it alone" until it develops noises or starts to show other mechanical deficiencies) and I will still plan to go through the transmission and rear axle (- not necessarily all new gears and bearings this time though), as well as the front axle and steering. I also plan to use Concept on the running gear this time rather than powder coat everything underneath. I figure that if I paint the car this time myself, that I may be able to do a nice cosmetic restoration for something in the $15-20K range, inclusive of an estimated $6.5K+ for top and interior (LB top and interior for this car are something less than $3K).

I hope that this will provide some insight into my experience with my fordor. Again, I went way overboard on a number of items, but there were absolutely no short-cuts taken during this restoration. In retrospect, I am quite certain that I could have wound up with a very nice car for a good bit less.
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Old 07-11-2018, 08:07 AM   #41
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

Quote:
Originally Posted by TomballMottershaw View Post
Hi Mike V. Florida,
re: $3000 for brake parts... Mikes' has "most parts" for $2280....

I guess you have not rebuilt or viewed the video's available on A brake jobs.
there are a lot more parts to a brake rebuild job than the 4 corners.
pedals, linkages, cross shaft, front link arms are $100 each...
not to mention E-brake parts.
& for Mikes deal:....you have to ship your 4 "cores" back to him too: another $200

so if you budget $3000... you will make your budget, that's success.

... and the $2280 does not include shipping... that's normally +15% of the cost.

but $5000 for brakes is cheap, compared to have your head pushed into the dash via the hole in the steering wheel, and legs around the gear shiftier.
... as most of our health insurance only covers some stuff, after $10,000... of ER bills.

The goal it to drive them and stay alive:
Just make sure your brakes can lock up your tires.... and practice panic stops, at speed so you know how well our car performs.
& if you won't do it for your own safety... please, to reduce my insurance costs & make it easier on your loved ones, wear a seat-belt.
So your idea of restoration is the replacement of every part with new? You don't believe in restoring any part? That's one way of doing it.

I like to take things apart and only replace and repair what is needed. How often do the sheetmetal backing plates need to be replaced, the metal shoes, etc.

There are several ways to do a restoration,
1) do all the work yourself
a) replace just what is needed
b) replace everything you can with new

2) provide the labor and farm out what you cannot do

3) send it with instructions on the level of restoration out and pick it back up in a few years.

It is my personal opinion that 3000.00+ for restoring brakes is a waste of money, others may not think the same way.
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Old 07-11-2018, 09:36 AM   #42
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

I have followed this thread for awhile but purposely stayed out of it not to taint it from a professional POV, however after reading some of the comments above I will interject a few thoughts based on personal experience.


1) I generally just shake my head when I hear/read someone that says "You can buy one cheaper than you can restore one for.". What I have found counters that, and while that remark may seem logical from the outside looking in, I can point you to quite a few people that have found saying that not to be true for them. More often than not, most "restored" cars that are available on the market have been grossly patched with most of the hidden areas of the vehicle overlooked. Even listening to people here sharing their experiences, it seems that rarely does anyone purchase a restored car that does not require work to correct things that should have been restored the first time. Often times those 'overlooked' items turn into lots of $$.

For example, how many 'restored' Vickys do we find that have shiny paint and clean upholstery over the top of deteriorated or brittle wood? By the time the new owner realizes the time & expense to have the wood replaced on his 'restored' car, he quickly begins to realize that buying a 'restored' one is not always cheaper. The same applies to many other facets of the restoration where something was wire brushed and repainted without properly restoring that component.


2) Next, most restorers (-including most Fordbarners) have no idea of how many hours it takes to restore a Model-A to a 'driver level' or even a fine-point level. I am not saying this to be mean or intend it as an insult however if we are truthful with ourselves, most people cannot even give an accurate answer for how long (-within 1 minute) it takes for them to drive to work much less a complete restoration. Even my shop has difficulty in accurately forecasting and estimating the correct time on each task even with all the experience we have, ...simply because no two projects ever require the same amount of labor to complete the task.


3) With regard to the insurance company, Bob simply needs to educate them on why his vehicle is worth more than $45k. To begin with, he is establishing a replacement value, and I doubt anyone can quickly find anyone willing to sell a replacement Victoria in the exact quality (-same exact components restored) for $45k. If Bob must find someone to make the repairs to return it to the condition it was just prior to his claim, then it does not take very many hours of professional labor to 'eat up' that $45k.

Now where this gets complicated is differentiating quality and placing a value on that difference. I am going to use Greg's car mentioned above as a comparison. From my own experiences, having a car score 488 vs. the ones that score 500 points is not just a $500 or $1,000 difference in costs or value. Scoring 488 is a great accomplishment and is not to be taken lightly however it is also very possible that those final 12 points could easily cost a thousand dollars per point to obtain, --or likely even more! My point is, it is the entire vehicle that establishes the value and not just the items on the scoresheet. Using the wood infrastructure mentioned above as an example, this is not evaluated in T/C judging however it would/should be when establishing a value of a vehicle, ...or when determining restoration/replacement costs. From my experience I will tell you that 190A wood kits can generally suck straight out of the box and because of the poor joint fits, they generally do not offer the same structural integrity as what the original wood did. This is not good for a show car however it is even worse for a driver level car that is intended to be driven. I can also offer that for us to cut, shape, fit, and install that new, correctly fitting wood in a 190A will generally take in the 175-200 hour range, plus materials (wood, screws, expendable items such as blades, drills, etc., & glue). You then need to place a $$ value on that work because we are not comparing apples-to-apples when comparing a replacement vehicle that has old wood to one that has been correctly restored. Labor costs in this country are already expensive, and are rising. These costs are already affecting restoration costs no matter whether it is for the hobbyists purchasing new parts, -or for the professional restorer that must pay a fair wage to his craftsman to do a task. Either one of these costs greatly affects the money that must be spent on a restoration. Ultimately, these costs also establish the value of a restored Model-A, and the bigger problem is that most Model-As are not truly restored, but instead are 'repaired & repainted' and passed off as restored.


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Old 07-11-2018, 10:40 AM   #43
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Professional paint job by a good shop in the SF Bay area will be close to $20K if they do all of it with modern technology and correct colors. (Plus or minus big numbers)
Ouch. I've heard anything associated with the SF area is big bucks!!

Interesting thread here. Makes me think of the cars that Marshall has come across in his travels that were 'restored' that he has tried to make right. Some pretty roughly 'restored' cars running around out there many of them outright dangerous.

I guess, in retrospect, I'm thinking of the 'fun factor' involved. Fine Point cars are really cool, I love seeing them, but they don't fit my budget as I have a number of hobbies to attend to not just Model A's. Any hobby from guns to petroliana to coins to golf to horses to boating to 60's Muscle Cars to about anything out there, takes preemo bucks if you want to really get involved and go all the way. Therefore I guess I fall into the fun-to-have-a-solid little driver Model A Ford that is pretty much original in appearance but is never going to be on the cover of Model A News or The Restorer, and that is OK with me. You can spend some money on them as your budget allows to keep them safe and running well and go from there. And have fun with the car.

But, if you have that car that Grandad bought new, been in your family for many years, maybe Uncle Bud was sitting in the car the morning he heard of the Pearl Harbor attack and then he went off and joined the Marines etc. by all means spend the money to keep it up to a high level and keep the car in a controlled environment garage that's the key. And, by all means don't let it sit in a Morton building with a dirt floor.

And one other very important thing here on this, at least so far here in the USA we aren't being screwed with big taxes like our friends in Australia and New Zealand are. That adds a lot to the expense.

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Old 07-11-2018, 11:09 AM   #44
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

All of these posts show why the original question is impossible to answer.
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Old 07-11-2018, 11:31 AM   #45
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

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So your idea of restoration is the replacement of every part with new? You don't believe in restoring any part? That's one way of doing it.

I like to take things apart and only replace and repair what is needed. How often do the sheetmetal backing plates need to be replaced, the metal shoes, etc.

There are several ways to do a restoration,
1) do all the work yourself
a) replace just what is needed
b) replace everything you can with new

2) provide the labor and farm out what you cannot do

3) send it with instructions on the level of restoration out and pick it back up in a few years.

It is my personal opinion that 3000.00+ for restoring brakes is a waste of money, others may not think the same way.

Mike, we are definitely friends so us disagreeing is not going to change anything but you are mixing up definitions that are the very root of what has caused this whole issue.


In some ways, your 1a above is really is NOT 'restoring'! I think most would call that Repairing. Restoring is returning each component back to a standard by which it was originally manufactured. Replacing just what is needed is generally not returning all items back to correct specifications.


The other thing that you may not be aware of is when you price what it costs to completely bring the entire braking system back within factory specifications, -factoring in parts (-including the cast-iron drum conversion) & professional labor for rebuilding all components, you will find it does approach $3k very quickly.
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Old 07-11-2018, 11:46 AM   #46
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Ouch. I've heard anything associated with the SF area is big bucks!!

Interesting thread here. Makes me think of the cars that Marshall has come across in his travels that were 'restored' that he has tried to make right. Some pretty roughly 'restored' cars running around out there many of them outright dangerous.

I guess, in retrospect, I'm thinking of the 'fun factor' involved. Fine Point cars are really cool, I love seeing them, but they don't fit my budget as I have a number of hobbies to attend to not just Model A's. Any hobby from guns to petroliana to coins to golf to horses to boating to 60's Muscle Cars to about anything out there, takes preemo bucks if you want to really get involved and go all the way. Therefore I guess I fall into the fun-to-have-a-solid little driver Model A Ford that is pretty much original in appearance but is never going to be on the cover of Model A News or The Restorer, and that is OK with me. You can spend some money on them as your budget allows to keep them safe and running well and go from there. And have fun with the car.

But, if you have that car that Grandad bought new, been in your family for many years, maybe Uncle Bud was sitting in the car the morning he heard of the Pearl Harbor attack and then he went off and joined the Marines etc. by all means spend the money to keep it up to a high level and keep the car in a controlled environment garage that's the key. And, by all means don't let it sit in a Morton building with a dirt floor.

And one other very important thing here on this, at least so far here in the USA we aren't being screwed with big taxes like our friends in Australia and New Zealand are. That adds a lot to the expense.





Jeff, as I pointed out above, the price of quality labor is on the rise, and the cost of business overhead has risen too. Its not just in the SF area. Shops in larger metropolitan areas now must charge $90-100 an hour to be able to show a profit.


While it might seem like they are getting rich, I suggest you look at what other shops or professional services must charge to pay their bills and stay in business.


On a Model-A. when you break-down all of the different sheetmetal components that must be painted, ...and then add up the straightening time, the priming & blocking time, the refinishing time, and the polishing time for a professional quality paint job on each of those components, it is easy to have 4 weeks or 160 man-hours in producing a paint job. Now price-out what good quality primers and paints are plus materials, and you will find $1˝-2k for just materials. Total all of that and tell me what the price is.




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Old 07-11-2018, 12:13 PM   #47
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

Interesting topic to me its just another hobby and cheaper than fishing ? Price a new fishing Boat that will lose value faster than the out going tide . I have a pile of receipts on my coupe project I just need to live long enough to finish . My cash outlay so far is only about $ 6000 but I trade and barter another $6000 I might have a driver .
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Old 07-11-2018, 12:29 PM   #48
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It seems to me that some of us are letting our ego’s get in the way of being fair to our hobby.

I would venture to say that the majority of Model A Ford’s still on the road are not fine point restored cars. They are maintained or restored to many different levels. Each of us being very proud of our antique car or cars.

Is a car that has had its engine, complete running gear, paint, and interior redone not considered restored to some level?

We own a 1929 Sport Coupe that has never been completely apart but has won many local car show awards. It is not in anyway a fine point car, but it drives like new and looks to most people like a well restored car.

As many have mention. You can spend big bucks for a fine point restoration, if that’s what you are looking for. Or you can spend and do what you can afford, if that’s what you are looking for.

I drive the grand kids out for ice cream. I enjoy the waves and nice car comments. I just like owning a car that I have worked on since I was 12 years old.

Why do we have to pick other people’s cars apart?

Spend what you can afford, you will be proud of and enjoy owning your Model A. Enjoy.
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Old 07-11-2018, 02:32 PM   #49
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It seems to me that some of us are letting our ego’s get in the way of being fair to our hobby.

I would venture to say that the majority of Model A Ford’s still on the road are not fine point restored cars. They are maintained or restored to many different levels. Each of us being very proud of our antique car or cars.

Is a car that has had its engine, complete running gear, paint, and interior redone not considered restored to some level?

We own a 1929 Sport Coupe that has never been completely apart but has won many local car show awards. It is not in anyway a fine point car, but it drives like new and looks to most people like a well restored car.

As many have mention. You can spend big bucks for a fine point restoration, if that’s what you are looking for. Or you can spend and do what you can afford, if that’s what you are looking for.

I drive the grand kids out for ice cream. I enjoy the waves and nice car comments. I just like owning a car that I have worked on since I was 12 years old.

Why do we have to pick other people’s cars apart?

Spend what you can afford, you will be proud of and enjoy owning your Model A. Enjoy.


OK, it seems this is becoming skewed and off point. I just re-read what has been written above, and I personally don't think anyone is saying anything about comparing Fine-Point to Drivers as to which is better, -nor is anyone suggesting any percentage number of Model-As still on the road are Fine-Point or Driver, ...and I do not see that anyone is picking other people's cars apart. This topic is about replacement costs with insurance companies and the costs associated with performing a restoration.




One question I will ask you based on your comments though, ...what is your definition difference between repairing and restoring? In other words, we all can read/understand the definitions of those two words in the dictionary and how they differ in meaning however please give us your opinion of when someone is repairing a Model-A vs. when they are restoring a Model-A.




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Old 07-11-2018, 03:22 PM   #50
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To me restoring some thing is bring it back to like new condition.
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Old 07-11-2018, 04:27 PM   #51
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I just had a couple of older guys look at a really nice coupe I have for sale.I have no idea how long ago it was done,but the laquer paint is holding up nicely.Some cracking in the black reveals where the roof meets the body.This is head and shoulders above presentable,it is still a beautiful car,both on top and underneath.They were coming about 60 miles to look at it so I was pretty thorough on description.I told them about the paint and the first words out of their mouths were,yep,it needs 20 grand in paint.They agreed I was honest in describing it to them,but they wanted absolute perfection for $15000.They actually tried to tell me it was only worth $5000. 10 years ago the appraisal was $16,500,and the car has improved since.They said they got the figures and how to use them as a negotiating point here on the Fordbarn.
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Old 07-11-2018, 04:35 PM   #52
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I just had a couple of older guys look at a really nice coupe I have for sale.I have no idea how long ago it was done,but the laquer paint is holding up nicely.Some cracking in the black reveals where the roof meets the body.This is head and shoulders above presentable,it is still a beautiful car,both on top and underneath.They were coming about 60 miles to look at it so I was pretty thorough on description.I told them about the paint and the first words out of their mouths were,yep,it needs 20 grand in paint.They agreed I was honest in describing it to them,but they wanted absolute perfection for $15000.They actually tried to tell me it was only worth $5000. 10 years ago the appraisal was $16,500,and the car has improved since.They said they got the figures and how to use them as a negotiating point here on the Fordbarn.
Did they buy the car?
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Old 07-11-2018, 05:06 PM   #53
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They didn't buy it.I know some say they would throw them out,insult them,but some day they just may come back with money for something else.There was a man here that exports to Hungary,he offered $12000.Those two old boys thought he was just foolish.With A's and British motorcycles I've found I have to drive a stake in the ground and say,that's it.That's the price.Look it over good,do and say whatever you want,but that is the price.The sight of cash doesn't excite me.Those guys thought I was going to sell cheap because they had cash and they felt I should sell to them cheap.
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Old 07-11-2018, 05:09 PM   #54
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They didn't buy it.I know some say they would throw them out,insult them,but some day they just may come back with money for something else.There was a man here that exports to Hungary,he offered $12000.Those two old boys thought he was just foolish.With A's and British motorcycles I've found I have to drive a stake in the ground and say,that's it.That's the price.Look it over good,do and say whatever you want,but that is the price.The sight of cash doesn't excite me.Those guys thought I was going to sell cheap because they had cash and they felt I should sell to them cheap.
Good for you! They don’t make them anymore. Enjoy.
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Old 07-11-2018, 05:10 PM   #55
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I guess I haven't kept up with the cost of restoring a car.

Keith and Brent both related that a paint job is $20K today with preparation work done properly. I was thinking ten grand would catch it I see I'm behind the curve.

SO, my next step is to re-evaluate my Agreed Value insurance with Hagerty and I'd better bump that up. The latest issue of The Restorer had two articles about Model A's being totalled, one article dealt with the big California wild fires. The other was the big floods in Houston last year.

I'm glad to have learned something here I really hadn't thought much about lately..........
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Old 07-11-2018, 06:35 PM   #56
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Keith,
thanks for sharing your sales story with us. I think most everyone can relate and it is enjoyable to hear Im not the only one having gone through the same story over and over.
My favorite line when getting low balled on a sale is, bring me ten of them for that price and Ill take them all.


Usually brings silence and a little bit of shock.


ALso, Brent- all well said. There is a huge difference between 90% and 100% and sometimes that means double the price. Not everyone realizes that.


you can buy a good guitar for 90% enjoyment at a price of 2000. Or you can buy a great guitar for 100% enjoyment and it might set you back 5000.


a #2 car or a #1 car-huge difference...... but both are real nice.
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Old 07-11-2018, 07:24 PM   #57
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Webster’s definition of “Restore”.

“To put back into existence or use”. Restore.

If you restore cars for a living, you might have a different view of what should be called restored.

If you do it for a hobby or just because, you also might have a different view of what should be called restored.

I again will say that none of us should let our ego’s get in our way. For a large percentage of us, it’s just a hobby. Enjoy.
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Old 07-11-2018, 07:41 PM   #58
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I think a lot more A.s are fixed and painted, than restored.
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Old 07-12-2018, 04:12 AM   #59
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I just had a couple of older guys look at a really nice coupe I have for sale...
...they wanted absolute perfection for $15000.They actually tried to tell me it was only worth $5000. 10 years ago the appraisal was $16,500,and the car has improved since.They said they got the figures and how to use them as a negotiating point here on the Fordbarn.
Probably the same type of people who want me to sell them a car with $2,500 radiator for $50 because that's what they paid in 1959, and my car will "need a whole new interior because they saw a wavy stitch in a seat and the door had a mark on it."
I have words for those people but none of them are polite words so i won't use them here.
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Old 07-12-2018, 05:52 AM   #60
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Webster’s definition of “Restore”.

“To put back into existence or use”. Restore.

If you restore cars for a living, you might have a different view of what should be called restored.

If you do it for a hobby or just because, you also might have a different view of what should be called restored.

I again will say that none of us should let our ego’s get in our way. For a large percentage of us, it’s just a hobby. Enjoy.

Or mine says; : to bring back to or put back into a former or original state.

As a professional restorer, I do exactly what my customer asks me to do. I don't see where anyone's ego is involved in this conversation however I do believe people should be honest in their descriptions. Society has taken the stance where making misleading statements is acceptable. Just as in Bob's case, other that have misused the term 'restoration' has cheapened the hobby as a whole. I am pretty sure we all know that Bob is truthful when he tells us he has restored his car and has $60k in it, yet because others have stated theirs is restored, it has mislead the public into believing a restored Model-A can be done for less money.
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Old 07-12-2018, 07:10 AM   #61
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Or mine says; : to bring back to or put back into a former or original state.

As a professional restorer, I do exactly what my customer asks me to do. I don't see where anyone's ego is involved in this conversation however I do believe people should be honest in their descriptions. Society has taken the stance where making misleading statements is acceptable. Just as in Bob's case, other that have misused the term 'restoration' has cheapened the hobby as a whole. I am pretty sure we all know that Bob is truthful when he tells us he has restored his car and has $60k in it, yet because others have stated theirs is restored, it has mislead the public into believing a restored Model-A can be done for less money.
A persons Ego is a terrible thing for other people to have to deal with!

Buyer be ware!

If you were to spend $30,000.00, $60,000.00, or more on restoring a Model A, it still might not give you a “Restored” car given some people’s strict definition. These restored cars are still worth to most buyers only slightly more than what someone might call a good driver.

My idea or your idea of a restored car might not be the same. However, I believe we agree that nothing should be misrepresented.

All that I am trying to say is that for most of the world a restoration of anything is in the view of the restorer.

It is up to the buyer to decide if the level of restoration equals the price being asked.

Everything in life that is restored is not point judged. Buyers are the final decision makers. Enjoy.

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Old 07-12-2018, 10:29 AM   #62
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What I hear a lot of is,for $XX,XXX you shoulda got this,or shoulda got that.There are cars you can put $10,000 in and have a nice looking car.There are cars you can put $10,000 in and just get started.i only know of a couple of shops around here that will take any old car work now,and they are time and materials only.I used to work on a 29 pickup for an older fellow that had had the truck painted in a shop next to his house.The shop owner knew him and let him watch through an office window.The worker didn't mind him watching,and the truck owner said he got value for every minute of work he paid for.His friends all would say he should have gotten a lot more for what he paid,but the fact was he got what he paid for.
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Old 07-12-2018, 01:30 PM   #63
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Antique vehicle preservation/restoration can include many skills such as wood working, electrical, upholstery, mechanical (engine/chassis), body work, painting, etc.; just to name a few. In addition, tools, equipment, and shop space is required.

My guess is that most of us don't have all these skills and naturally rely on others with the requisite skill level.

While the out of pocket cash costs for preservation/restoration are most important, your efforts/work in the project brings non-cash value and benefits.

For example, if you completely rebuild the Model A Brake System, you will learn an awful lot about the braking system and have a much better appreciation for your car's brakes. Having someone else rebuild them will not impart that value/knowledge.

The true cost of restoration/preservation should factor in the value/knowledge you gained through the process.
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Old 07-16-2018, 10:52 AM   #64
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Originally Posted by Keith True View Post
They didn't buy it.I know some say they would throw them out,insult them,but some day they just may come back with money for something else.There was a man here that exports to Hungary,he offered $12000.Those two old boys thought he was just foolish.With A's and British motorcycles I've found I have to drive a stake in the ground and say,that's it.That's the price.Look it over good,do and say whatever you want,but that is the price.The sight of cash doesn't excite me.Those guys thought I was going to sell cheap because they had cash and they felt I should sell to them cheap.
Keith those 'first' two guys that came to look at your Coupe wouldn't have been those annoying pair from American Pickers by chance?

Those kind of shows have done a tremendous amount of damage to the antique car and collectibles hobby as far as I'm concerned. Today everybody is a bloody 'flipper' going to make big money off of you being stupid. That really grinds my gears, I have no patience with these types. This is the price, if you don't like it there's the door.

Some guy came thru here last summer with a pickup and an empty trailer and Missouri tags, looking to 'buy' old cars. Somebody at the restaurant uptown sent him my way. He found me in the garage, told me he wanted to buy an old car, and did I have anything for sale? I told him politely 'no'. Then, this goof ball starts tearing into our '36 Ford telling me all that is wrong with it, how it wasn't worth much, how I could make some quick money by selling it to him,,, and all that nonsense. If I had had the Garand handy he would have gotten an .06 up his butt hole. The guy was a real jerk.

He then said 'I'm heading over to a guy named (name ommitted he's a friend of mine) to buy his '59 Vette." Yeah, good luck with that, that has never been tried before! Plus my friend is a hardened VietNam vet he was in the battle of the I Drang Valley he'll clean your clock he's half nuts to start with, you just don't fool with him

The Missouri's guy's funeral was held the next week!!
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Old 07-16-2018, 08:59 PM   #65
holdover
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

Been watching this for a few weeks, and there are some interesting points made. The cost of a restoration is truly an open ended question, everyone is different. Quality work by a skilled craftsman is expensive, as is the materials and parts. As a life long restorer I couldn't give you a number of how many times someone asked me how much to do the job. My answer always has been time and materials and what level do you want to achieve. Years ago I gave up doing customer work and started buying and restoring, then selling. Less hassle no interface with an anxious customer who wants it done yesterday and no issues about getting paid while the restoration is taking place and they all went out the door to new, happy owners. One thing that has not been mentioned is that if you are planning on having a restoration done seek out someone that is knowledgeable working on that particular model, the local guy down the street may not have a clue on how something is suppose to be, using someone not qualified could be a recipe for financial diaster, not to mention the frustration. If you stick with the better shops around the country you might be better off, but do your homework before you commit to spending your grand kids inheritance. Patience is the key, look around, research where you want to go with this, it will be expensive and you want to make sure that the end result will stand up to the test, is it done correctly. The man that taught me many automotive things while I was growing up in Huntington Sta. NY in the 50s-60s, Bob Kannard had a saying that he had on a banner in the waiting room, "Confucius says, ask for cheap job, get same"



I'll finish with a suggestion that worked for me in finding my Tudor, as a restorer I admire and can appreciate quality work, plus you get to enjoy it as soon as you buy it.. Look at the vehicles that pass muster at the national meets, such as fine point judging or touring class the last couple of years, investigate who did the work, you might find one of those vehicles for sale and have the opportunity to buy it. Not the only way to find one, but not to bad a start

Last edited by holdover; 07-16-2018 at 09:31 PM.
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Old 07-17-2018, 02:55 PM   #66
Mike V. Florida
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

As I said before all the posts above are valid. There is not even one definition of what it means to restore a car. Is it wrong to say something like " I want to restore the engine to running condition"? Does it have to be as it left the factory?

How about these;

I'm going to restore my Dads A to running condition.
I'm going to restore my A to driving condition.
I'm going to restore my A to AACA standards.
I'm going to restore my A to as it was supposed to leave the factory floor.

In my opinion, these are all correct use of the word restore and with each come different costs.

Even the last one, Mark Maron took 8 years to restore his car to "fine point". Most of the work was done by him. Eight years is a good piece of time but since I'm sure he did not charge himself labor it was cost effective.

You can have two high scoring cars with two greatly different costs. You provide the labor and don't make a profit on the parts and one that was dropped off and pick up a year or two later where the professional charged for labor and a profit on parts.
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Old 07-17-2018, 03:09 PM   #67
Kurt in NJ
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

I was looking through the papers from when I restored my car --- 1200$For everything, 320$ for the engine work (10$ a mile, it only lasted 3200 miles)
I learned that I could screw it up 3 times for what it would cost to pay someone else to screw it up,
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Old 07-17-2018, 04:45 PM   #68
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Default Re: Cos of A Restoration

Some great thoughts in this thread. I'm pleased I'm not the only person that has paid more than twice the market value for restoration / repair jobs.
I can look back at my life's achievements and say I have spared two of my three A's from scrap for future generations to enjoy.
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