Am I ready to restore my classic car or muscle car, that is the question that you need to ask yourself before you get in to the project. This is truly not for everybody. If you plan to restore the car yourself then you need to be sure that you have chosen a car that you can restore.
What I mean when I say you need to choose a car that you can restore; the project needs to stay in your skill set as far as the restoration work on the car. If you’re a body man, don’t buy a car that has horrendous electrical and mechanical problems.
This is where people get buried in the project and just push it aside. This is the main warning that I always give people who are planning to restore a car on their own. Obviously you need to plan ahead for the things that you may need to farm out to a professional shop.
If saving money on the project is your main concern you should look to another hobby. No matter how you do classic cars take a lot of time and money to build.
I’d suggest that if you’re a person who doesn’t have a lot of time to work on a car restoration that you should make the time, or plan to have a shop do the work for you.
My best advice if this is your first restoration project is to buy a car that is in good condition to start with. You need to get one done to build your confidence level. If you turn one out that looks great your confidence will skyrocket.
Plan to spend some cash buying the car $2,500 muscle cars either don’t exist any more, or they are such huge turds that you should not attempt to build it for a first project. You should come in to the game with about $10,000 to buy your car.
Things to look at when buying your classic car
- Make sure that the floor boards and trunk floors aren’t rusted out of the car.
- Make sure that the quarter panels don’t have rust in them.
- Inspect the car for bad body & paint work.
- Bubbles in the paint mean rust in most cases.
- Listen to the engine run.
- Check the electrical harnesses for burning and redneck repair work.
- Look for parts missing that may be hard to find.
- Make sure you know what you plan for the car.
- Check body panel alignment, badly aligned panels usually mean body repair work which always means a wreck happened.
You need to have your ducks in a row before you begin a classic car restoration. What I’m saying here is that you should plan the restoration of the car down to the last nut and bolt. Make sure that parts are available for the car that you plan to restore.
Make 100% sure that you have planned the budget to buy that car, and to restore the car. These are two very different things. A properly planned budget means that you get the car done, and for close to what you want to spend on it, but this means planning.
So plan that restoration project and you will have fun building your car. Buy the right car to start with, make sure that you have evaluated you skill level to restore the car, and don’t buy a car that you can’t finish, or plan to farm out what you can’t do.