Newer car Basket Case

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For all of you that thought basket cases were stickly old cars, I have a newer one on my hands.
a late 1994 Beretta. No engine, some parts in the trunk, customer
providing what is supposed to be a correct engine from a salvage yard out of the area. Parts missing such as Torque Converter, fly wheel, engine mounts.
The car was taken to another local "mechanic" who when he could not locate the 1994-erly 1996 3.1 (3100 gen 3 heads V6) conned the customer in to have him rebuild the engine. A year or so later, with little work done to the car, alot of money spent on new parts, and no hopes of it ever being done, the customer got the vehical back.
A good number of bolts and major items are there. The customer got most of the engine back, minus things like push rods, connecting rods, ect. So I convinced them a compleate running engine from a salvage yard would be more econimcal then paying me to build the engine, and have to buy more parts for it.
Im expected to get this car up and running in the next few weeks. I went over with the trailer and snaged the car on thursday, and am awaiting the engine.
For the customers what happened was about their worst automotive nightmare. They got took, their car is missing parts, they have an engine in boxes, minus the block. And the big question is, how much stuff will Irealize I don't have when it goes back together.
For this car will be a problem. I like the customer, and do a good bit of work for them. I had put off this job till one of us could find an engine with under 80K (there figure, not mine) that was a drop in assembly (IE: not more then having to drill and tap bolt hole #6 for the A/C mount)
The worst part of all for me is the engine they are getting. It's coming from a yard Ihave never heard of. it supposedly has 66K miles, yet needed head gaskets, which they are supposedly doing. If they don't do something right, how will it reflect on my relations with this customer? How can I hounestly warrentee my work?
Basket cases aren't fun for anyone. Charles
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I agree this sounds like a nightmare. I used to have a motor cycle shop that I ran. Oh course when starting the business up I would accept jobs that I didn't really want but needed to get the word out that I did a good job on service and repair. I always lost my butt on these types of jobs as it's almost impossible to account for your time up front. And most people won't pay you straight time unless you are on a very good relationship with them and the bike is a restoration that's worth money when done. Best of luck on this one, hopefully all the pieces are there.
Brian

a
I
more
for
awaiting
in
engine
coming
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I feel very very sorry for you. It sounds like a dredful nightmere. On the customer's part, I understand liking a car and wanting to keep it going. I like my car, but it IS still just a Grand Am, and I'd probably just throw my hands in the air and search out for another car. Even if I just had hopes of having all the parts I needed at my disposal.
I'm not at all suggesting that to you, that would be dumb. But I honestly don't know if I'd go through all that trouble as the customer. Doesn't seem worth it to me. All this money could be spent on a better car.
Best of luck on this one though!! Honestly.
Tony
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Actually the customer wants to get it running properly, drive it for a month or two, then sell it. About the only way they can break even on the money spent. The salvage value of the car with out a good engine is very low. Even though the rest of the car is in better then average condishion. Charles
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I bet as a drive in $100.00?
as a tow away, free towing, for the title?
Around here tops for a good running 94 drive in with a rotted sub rail: $200.00!
Refinish King

condishion.
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Running the local salvage yards would pay as much as $500.
As a dead car with no engine, missing parts $100.
That's because it is in above average shape, and has less then 100K miles. Charles
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This area's tight!
You can get 3.1's with less than 100K for $300.00 or less. With amazingly low miles, $350.00 to $400.00.
The salvage yards in the immediate area pay shit and a nasty hello around here, when I ran the shop full time, I couldn't get more than $50.00 a car.
It's a depressed area, with lots of rich people, so I made the money on restorations, and the spoiled little rich kid's newer cars. But made a decent living off of the average Joe, I couldn't overcharge them, because they worked for a living like me, that's why I was so popular with them. I always gave them a break and respect.
Screw the rich!
Refinish King

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This is the Gen III Heads engine. First Beretta 94 to 96 and only a few other cars, due to an extra sensor location in the back head. If you can get the late 94 to current 3100 (3.1's) that cheep, I might have to come get them from you.

car.
Depends on the car, the yard, and whats wrong with it. We would pay $50 for any american car that was intact, yet in-op. $50 for anything you could drive in. One or two that we paid $1000 for. They were all rebuilders, and all late models. We would pay $500 or so for cars we could sell atleast $2000 worth of parts from. That's before over head costs.
I remember one peson who came in. Drove his 1979 Buick LeSabra in with him. Tried to sell it to me for $1000. Said he had called us for months writing down the prices of the parts we quoted him on the phone, and swearing we would make $1000 to $1500 off his car.
We had 25 1977 to 1985 LeSabra RWD's in the yard. Most bought for $50, or given to us. Low demand on the parts, easy to get vehicals. We mostly used them from monster truck shows.
When I explained that to that idiot, you would have though I had just shoot him in the nut sack.

Sounds about like the business the body shop I worked at got. We specialized in Restoration work. Always had some old tin in the shop awaiting parts, or free time. We would do average joes collision work, and some rich boys customs work. The problem with this area is, not enough people want to restore older cars to make a go of a small resto shop. Charles
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Here:
You could do restorations and close the door to collision work. but when you do the facts and figures: restorations at $60.00 an hour and collision at $42.00 an hour. You can always beat flat rate from the collision guide on collision, so collision is always the winner in the profitability ledger.
Paint and materials: the insurance companies squeeze your nuts so tight, it's a wonder that you make any money at all on a collision, and you have to fight on a small job. because they pay on refinish time percentage for materials, so $22.00 per hour on a 2.0Hr. spot job, you can't even prime the job for that!
Of course unless you want to use off brand shit?
not me!
Refinish King
PPG for most of my career and not a problem yet. Every time I used Dupont, always a pissed off customer!

amazingly
few
around
$50
could
with
$50,
just
because
I
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can
come
and
atleast
mostly
on
them.
and
shop.
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Providing my building is built:
you bring the car wit parts all removed. I can do it for about $2,000.00to $2,500.00 plus materials, providing the car is fair condition?
That's a lot less than I charge the regulars!
Refinish King

a
a
pay
months
a
enough
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I could bring you a shell with trailer axles under it, doors, hood, fenders, hatch (with wing on it) un-attached. Most for the parts sand blasted and just in a sealer coat to prevent surface rust. My Land Lord has a sandblasting business, and cuts me a break on blasting. He's pretty good at it (I have seen far, far worse, and a few better).He does a lot of car bodies, and I have yet to see him warp a paniel.
After the vandelisim, the body shell has some large dents. Someone took cross bracing for some pallet racking and used it to beat the body. Every window got broken. The winshield has a 4 inch hole in it, they even smashed the gauge cluster! So it's no where near decent. Part of the reason I want someone who is good to do her. She's my pride and joy. She will never be prefect by any means, I just want to restore her former glory, maybe a bit better. A part of me died when she got in the shape she is in. Charles
Not many people get asked to even ride in my Trans Am, Fewer still are trusted to touch it, so far no one but me has ever repaired her.
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I'm a metal man:
Not Plastic Surgeon Kildare!
LOL
I make the metal as straight and as shrunken as humanly possible, most times no plastic!
Maybe I'll drive out one day. The septic looks like it's on it's way to approval for the ground. So things should be moving soon.
Refinish King

$2,000.00to
has
good
took
reason
in.
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times
How large a shop will you have, building wise?
Ours is pretty small 40x80. With an office, and a large bathroom taking up 1/8th of the space. When we put our lift in, we had to cut a rafter out, since we have a peaked roof. The bottoms of the rafters are at about 12 foot. Which makes for some interesting moments with the fork lift.
Your welcome out here any time. My place aint too impressive. Looks like someone crossed a Junk Yard with a repair shop. Charles
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I'm looking to start with a 100X100:
With 30 foot high ceilings, so I can go after the truck and heavy equipment work.
Plus, if my frame machine and spray booth business picks up when I make the prototypes for U.L. and get U.L. approval.
With the acreage, I'll be adding on another 300X300 feet for manufacturing, plus another 100X75 Feet for the cars and keep the trucks separate.
This all in the planning stages. hopefully I can lease something soon, otherwise I'll have all my savings pissed away and nothing to do anything with. Depression causes compulsive spending!
Refinish King

taking
out,
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equipment
the
manufacturing,
Hmm.. I might have to start hanging out in P.A. I love helping people spend money!
I can probably help you get some parts if you need. I know most of the classic auto salvage folks in this area, and a good number of the good old boys that have privet salvage yards. Not to mention what I/we(business partners) have (atleast 80 vehicals being parted out right now). Like if you needed Allision Automatics for 3208 Cat powered Ford cab overs from the late 70's erly 80's, I have 2 good used units, a rebuildible 3208, and a core 3208. Both Transmissions only have 12K since overhauled.
If your going in to medium and heavy repair, consider the extra cost of a good 6000 pound capasity fork lift, and a good 6 or 8 post lift. I my self have become lift spoiled. The fork lift we use right now is a 3000 pound capasity Toyota with a Gasoline 4 cylinder. Cushion tires, 2 stage mast, 3 & 5 foot sets of forks. Purchased used by my business partner for $500. Our lift is a used ALM brand 2 post A-symetrical with a capasity of 9000. Although it's a bit concerning when you have full side vans, and 1 ton trucks on it. We paid around $2,500 for it.
We have had zoning issues too. The Zoning inspector for our area is related to a fromer business partners, former business partner. So he has issues with us. Thankfully we are zones Industrial One. The same as the salavge yard on the other end of the road. We have to put up a privacy fence now, which is going to cost a few thousand. When done Im sure he will be back with another thing we have to do.
Charles
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take him to court and make the relationship an issue!
Do it Pro Se, fuck money hungry lawyers, the courthouse has all the laws specific to your county, and the city hall has the zoning laws specific to your area.
Salvage yards and privacy fences were a federal law, since Ladybird Johnson had it enacted, when Johnson was President.
So that is a federal issue and you have to comply.
Refinish King
PS
As far as the heavy trucks, I'll only buy what's needed, and lots of farmers like to get their old trucks restored with the farm's logo. So, that is an untapped resource I'm looking into.

anything
old
and
of
self
3
Our
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Johnson
farmers
We arew not technically a salvage yard. We are listed as a multi-use auto facility. Repair & Tow Service Impound lot.
To sue, I would have to be 1000% in the up and up. That means spending atleast an extra $1000 per month on rent, just to have the required distance from the parking area to the cars. Plus I would have to have a seperate office, with utilities. Then a privacy fence.
I have looked in to it, I could do it if I barrowed money. Im not sure I really want to. After all my 5 year plan included moving. Charles
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then it pays to do like I do:
Kill em with kindness, then flip them the finger. Rigid and stiff as they're smiling thinking they got you. As they're walking out.
As long as they let me play, I can make money to put up with the petty shit, but when they tried to close the doors twice, I took them to court. Pro Se, and won!
So, in the end, sometimes there is justice for the little pissed off Italian!
LOL
Refinish King

to
an
sure
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On Sat, 12 Jun 2004 01:25:21 -0400, "Refinish King"

what type of buildings are you planning? I'm assuming metal buildings, yes? have you settled on a manufacturor yet? if you haven't... I'd suggest taking a look at Package Industies out of Sutton, MA. (I've put up about 30 of their buildings in the last 4 years alone). I've worked on Butler, Star, Varco-Pruden, Stant, and Package buildings and I'm partial to Package.
hth, Bret
-who's glad to be getting out of the iron worker business... hard on the body.
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