DISCOURAGED! Should I replace, keep or give her up???

Discussion in '1965 - 1973 Classic Mustangs -General/Talk-' started by killer medic, Feb 3, 2013.

  1. I need some advice from you guys. Maybe even some affirmations and other sob stories, who knows! It's a long story, but it's straight from the heart... ;)

    I always loved classic cars. My dad was a mechanic and I would sit behind the wheel of his 1965 Buick Special (it's long gone now) and pretend it was mine since the age of 6. I love the smell, nostalgia and the feel that newer cars lacked. Fast forward to age 19 to when I was looking for my first car. My love for Gen 1 Mustangs was all because of a falsely advertised white, 1964 1/2 convertible on a used car lot and totally out of my price range. Siting in that pristine white interior beauty, I was immediately and forever overtaken by the allure of a classic Mustang.

    My very first car back in 1999 was a 1966 Code C 289 for $1200. I did eveything you should do when looking for and buying a car. I also had delusions of making it a daily driver. Looking back, I was naive at an embarassing level! Although I thought it looked decent on the outside, in reality it was barely hanging on. I was falling apart everywhere with rust cancers like you wouldn't believe. The windshield had that funky frosting issue going on, exhaust had holes all through it, firewall was swiss cheese, my feet got soaked when it rained, floorboards were shot, quarters had lots of rust bubbles, the car reeked of gas fumes all day, it smoked on days that ended with a "y", passenger door swung open on left turns and the list goes on. But I loved her to death. Then one day sitting at a light, a brand new Lincoln navigator smashed in to the back of me and crumpled my whole back end. It was awful. She could barely drive after that. Insurance wanted to total it (you know how it goes). I decided to keep the car with plans to eventually get her fixed. So one night, the car breaks down on me (I think it was the points now that I think about it). I leave it overnight at an Arbys and notified the manager I would be back in the morning to tow it. I come back and the car is gone. There were no reports of it being towed. It was stolen. The car was never recovered. I was so fed up and trumatized by the whole experience, I swore off Mustangs and all classic cars. I gave away all my mags, manuals, model cars, took down posters, cancelled my subscriptions, stopped watching car shows on TV. I did not want reminders of my car because it too much to bare at time. I'd see one on the street from time to time and my heart would absolutely sink.

    Fast forward 7 years later to 2006 and I come across a listing in the online auto trader. I would sometime check the ads, fooling myself in hopes of finding a steal. Except this time, I thought I did. It was a 67 coupe with a 302 being sold for $2100 by a guy that needed to "sell in a hurry" because his mobile home association noted the he had too many cars. This time I really did look the car over (which in retrospect was still not good enough compared to what I know now). In a hasty move to avoid losing this great deal, I blow mine and my wife's tax return. She was not thrilled at all, but she wanted to support me because she knew that my love for cars never really went away. At the time, we lived in an apartment, worked in retail for crappy pay and had no access to a garage, but I was determined to make it work.

    After paying for the car and driving off with it, I blow out the rearend stopping on the gas at a light. The car roared like a banshee, inside and out now. I was upset because I was off to a crappy start. And this is where the story of my current car began.

    To date, I have only driven the car 30 total miles. It was originally an I-6, with an I-6 rear-end. I swapped out the rear-end with a 67 gt rear-end I bought on this forum that was shipped via Greyhound (learned something new from that)! I changed out the fuel lines, gas tank, U-joints, master cylinder, brakelines, rear drums, wheels. I have bought floor panels, weather stripping, distributor kit, dash pad, grill, healight assemblies, etc. The car is sitting in my tiny, one-car garage with not a whole lot of room to work in a house I am currently renting.

    I am currently in the process of looking for a house with a larger garage for my aspiring hobbies. I am making better money now, but that is getting absorbed by my lovely 3-year old daughter. My wife and our friends constantly poke fun at my car, calling it a rust pile (thanks to my lovely wife's joking comments). The car has basically sat for 2 years with me doing nothing to it. I decided to make a major push today to motivate myself to get back on the project. I cleared the boxes and stuff that had been sitting on it. My brother and I tries to push her outside so I can clean up the garage. The passenger wheel is completely locked up (brakes or hub probably), I see rust bits coming from the cowl area (common, I know) . But what really took the cake was some troubling rust on the front frame rail on the passenger side and radiator support frame. After seeing that, I was ready to throw the towel in.

    I'm at a crossroads. I don't know whether to cut my losses and sell her in hopes of eventually using the proceeds to buy another one with less issues in order to work on more fun projects than rust control and bodywork. I even considered buying a fully restored 67-68 and finance it with a loan, but I don't know if my pride would let me. I look at Craiglist and eBay only to see less and less classics for sale. Plus the ones I see are either too outrageously expensive, too destroyed, or seemingly too good to be true. My wife gave me the nastiest look ever when I pitched the idea of selling her to buy or finance a more expensive one.

    Please impart some wisdom, I would love to hear what everyone has to say about this, because I know I can't be the only one dealing with this. Sorry for the novel, I just had to get it out of my system.
  2. Get a professional opinion on the state of rust and the repair if needed. Then decide. I have dumped alot of money in my car strickly for love of the car and hobby. Its a 67 fb but not a shelby so I have much more in it than it is worth to the world but I dont care nor does my wife. She knows how i get results from our money and i never by cheap crap. Got about 15, 000 to go till I'll b happy and move on to a convertible for my wife and I. Its a labor of love for u and your family. We both know it will provide uncountable memories for you and yours as well as me and mine. Just try to finish it within 10 years! Lol. Good luck.
  3. That rust is typically caused by leaking battery acid. It might be time to park that car in a secure storage facility and take a break from it while you move your life on. Then when you are really ready with a real garage, bring it home and have a good look at it.
  4. My current 69 has been apart for 26 years. I drove it for 2 years after I bought it and started taking it apart the week my oldest was born. 4 years into it I threw it back together to move it when I got out of the AF. It sat for about a year till I got a house. Worked on it for a couple more years and almost had it back on the road. Let me take a step back, my current 69 is the 3rd mustang I've owned out of 15. My 06 being number 15. At this time in the story I was driving a 79 Pacecar edition daily, my 5th. Back to the story, I decided to go a different direction on the car and it sat while I made plans. In the mean time, my oldest got into dance and competitive dance which ate up a lot of spare money along with my attention diverted to other mustangs I bought, drove, modified. I didn't touch it again till 08. I have a small garage and work on the car outside cause it won't fit in the garage, had it in there for a while but too tight to actually work on it. Started back into it in 08 and have been working on it pretty steadily except for last summer when I only got 3 days total on the car due to other commitments. In all this time, my wife suggested selling it once. It was never mentioned again. We're still married. She doesn't give me any grief and is supporting. I have always put it on the back burner when needed for other family priorities. I too have spent a lot on the car, far more than the car would ever be worth on the market but as said before its a labor of love. IMO, your wife appears to not be on board with your throwing money at the basket case car and may resent it more if you don't get your money out of it by just selling it off unless she gets the money from it. My advice, if it costs you little or nothing, store it till your ready to pick it up again.
  5. I think you just set a record!
  6. Put your big boy pants on, get off the keyboard and get into that garage and start working. You will never find a car that was built in the 1960s that you cannot currently spot issues with eventually. Take one small issue at a time and start with getting those brand new parts out of boxes and onto the car. The joy of these things for me is far more working on them than driving - I often sell shortly after many-year projects.
    killer medic and clement like this.
  7. my first was my 65 c code coupe. that car wasnt very nice to me so i sold it. i dont regret it. then i had a 91 lx 5 liter that i beat on, a guy went through a redlight and totaled it. i didnt care about that one either. however, my '93 GT has been in the family since new. i blew up the stock motor in 2000. so it sat for several years while i put together another motor. about the time the motor was done i decided to go back to college. then it sat for a couple more years. it sat on 4 flat tires without a drivetrain for a decade by the time all was said and done. now its running again and i am about to drop a nasty windsor i have been working on in it. i knew the whole time if i sold it i would regret it. if you think you will regret selling the car you probably will. to me, im going to sink $ into them one way or another. so IMO you just have to find the one you feel good about wasting $ on.
  8. A few years ago, I had a similar issue with a '70 1/2 Firebird Formula 400/4spd/12 bolt. The car had unbelievable power, was rare, but, it had rust issues, I had no place to really take it apart like it needed, and a restoration would have been a multiple year project for me. I had this car for over 10 years and came to the conclusion that I wanted something to drive NOW and started looking. I ended up buying a one owner late '60s big block Mopar that immediately put me on the road and after some fairly minor work (and a few dollars) I drive it proud!
    I sold the Formula to a friend of mine for what I had in the car and although I kind of hated to see the car go.... I had a sense of relief AND a space in my garage!!

    Now, I am also the proud owner of a '65 Mustang Fastback with 72,000 original miles but, back then, things were different.

    I basically regrouped and started over which ended up being the right thing for me...

    -Can you sell your car for what you have into it?
    -Have you thought about finding another complete car to use for parts?
    -Or, find another '67 or '68 that is in better structural shape and using your car as a parts car?
    -Often there is value in buying a car that is complete or close to complete...

    Realmongo makes a good point about if it costs nothing to store it, to give it a rest...

    For me, it was a tough call but, I was tired of babysitting a car that didn't give me much enjoyment!
  9. only you can ultimately decide, but here is my advice;

    if the car is not taking up room, and you can do a lot of the work on the car, and have the time and the place to work on the car, them make the car yours. fix the rust issues as you can afford to do so, build a motor for it, etc. but have a plan for the car.

    if on the other hand you decide you dont want to do all the rust repairs, etc. then sell the car for as much as you can get for it, put that money into the bank, and add to it a little each paycheck, and save about $8000 dollars and then start looking for a mustang that is pretty much done, but still needs a little work. again look close for rust issues, perhaps have a mechanic and body man look over the car before you buy. if it checks out, then buy the car, and again finish it like you want the car to be.
  10. It's easier to stay interested in a running car. Does the engine work? Can you make a plan to do individual, small projects each weekend? Like the the front and then rear brakes? Then the distributor, etc...
  11. I'm tied with you! I wrecked my 67 coupe in 86. And just recently started working on it again. I'll never get rid of it.lol

    (killer medic) Can you do the work yourself? Will you be subbing most of the work out? If your going to do it yourself,+1 on a plan. Stick with your plan. If your not going to do the work, and your going to have someone do it for you, get an estimate. That will at least show you what your in for. It's all about how passionate you are about your car. And how much money you have to spend.
  12. If rust is your major concern, and you aren't able to repair it yourself, it's totally understandable how you can get discouraged. People abandon projects all the time for various reasons. Quality restorations usually begin with a complete tear down and rust repair. I would begin by locating a good shop to evaluate the condition of your car and estimate the cost of repairing the rust. If its as bad as you think, don't be surprised if its very expensive. You will likely find it cheaper to locate a project someone else is abandoning where the rust has already repaired, and using your car for a parts car. You can still build the car you want and get back on track quickly. Good luck whatever you decide to do.
  13. Take stock of what you have. If necessary get a body and mechanical professional THAT KNOWS CLASSIC MUSTANGS to give you an honest inspection/repair-restoration estimate with your plan in mind.
    Once you have that you can make an informed decision (with or without your wifes input) on what to do.

    I have a couple of questions though.
    1> is this car the base for your dream car?
    2>Do you have a plan for what the car is supposed to be? Is it a realistic plan?