What to look for when buying a used muscle car? - Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board
Hotrodders.com -- Hot Rod Forum



Register FAQ Search Today's Posts Unanswered Posts Auto Escrow Insurance Auto Loans
Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board > General Discussion> Hotrodders' Lounge
User Name
Password
lost password?   |   register now

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 04-13-2006, 08:58 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Cape Girardeau, Missouri
Age: 25
Posts: 0
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
What to look for when buying a used muscle car?

Hello all.

Because of my current financial situation, as well as some negotiating with my parents, I'm currently looking at buying a used muscle car as a daily driver. Because I'm only sixteen, and my budget is as low as is feasible, the only things I'm looking (in order of importance) for at the moment are

1. Four wheels (or the places to mount them )
2. V8 Engine (Don't care about carburetor or fuel injection)
3. Manual Transmission
4. Two door as opposed to four
5. Pre 90's and not an econostang.

The current possibilities that seem to stick out in my mind after searching ebay, the listings on hemmings, and glancing at used car dealerships as I was driving by are 80's Camaro/Firebird (Firebirds seem mostly to have manuals, which is a no-no for me) and a mid to late eighties Monte-Carlo. Despite a preference in my family for fords, all the mustangs i've found that do not conflict with number five seem to be far, far out of my price range of five grand or less.

What I need advice on is mostly what to look for at used car lots. What are the big mechanical problems? How prone are they to rust in places that are hard to get to? I'm not afraid of becoming my own mechanic. My dad's in the process of restoring a number of pre 1960's vehicles, so I have him to turn to for advice and tools. However, I feel that the best way to avoid this turning into a nightmare is to be fully aware of what I'm getting into when I'm getting in.

Again, thank's for any advice.

    Advertisement
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 04-14-2006, 10:29 AM
1982 SS's Avatar
Flamethrower
 

Last journal entry: More Cooling fan pictures.
Last photo:
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Utah
Age: 27
Posts: 340
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Been there, still there, but slowly getting away from it. My car is my '82 El Camino, which would be the same car as the Monte Carlos you are looking at. I bought it when I was 14 and it was solid but needed some help (as all do).

When I was looking for it, it had to be rust free and in solid shape for future upgrades. The only problem with the 78-88 GM's, very few came with a manual trannys. I was looking for a manual too, but with the aftermarket coming on strong for these cars, you can get 5 and 6 speed manual conversions for the G-body. Another plus is that these cars came with front disc brakes that some of your older 60's cars didn't have, so you save a few bucks there. Parts are cheap and can still be had in boneyards.

One other possibility, look into the Buicks. Like the '65 Riviera and the Wildcats of the same vintage. They are some cool cars, but the aftermarket is not there and they can get very expensive to build. As far as I know most came with Automatics.

As always look around and make sure it is all solid. Don't be afraid to climb under the car and look at the floor boards and more importantly, the body mounts. If the body mounts are rusted out, I would reccommend passing on the car as it takes a bit of effort to rebuild a body mount. If nothing else, the more cars you look at, you will find things you like and don't like about each one. Given enough time you find the car that you like. Look at many different cars from a lot of years and you will eventually narrow your search to ones that really do somehting for you.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 04-15-2006, 05:15 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Cape Girardeau, Missouri
Age: 25
Posts: 0
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Yeah. At this point, even though it goes against my nature, I have all the time in the world to spend looking for this car. Eventually, I'll find it. Untill then, I'm gonna be sticking my head in at the local lots, browse the classifieds every couple of days.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 04-15-2006, 05:21 PM
poncho62's Avatar
Out of the Loop Moderator
 
Last wiki edit: Streetbeasts links
Last journal entry: at car show
Last photo:
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Hanover, Ontario, Canada
Age: 62
Posts: 16,895
Wiki Edits: 5

Thanks: 20
Thanked 259 Times in 212 Posts
My advice.....talk ro your dad....and listen to his advice.

80s Mustangs, Camaros, Monte Carlos, el Caminos are NOT muscle cars...........They can be nice fast cars, but are not muscle cars.
__________________
Ontario Rodders

Budget RVs
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 04-15-2006, 07:46 PM
TailGater's Avatar
Blood, Sweat, and Gears!
 
Last photo:
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Saint John, NB
Age: 32
Posts: 86
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I used to drive a 86 monte carlo, very nice riding car and they look real sharp with just some shiny paint and nice wheels (in my opinion anyways) but poncho is right the're no muscle car. I built a 305 ho for mine with all the usual stuff high compression pistons, mild cam, performer intake, and dual exhaust. It was a lot more fun to drive with the new motor, but its still slower then my dodge neon lol. still have the old car, might have to fix it up and get it back on the road sometime, i'm getting all nostalgic thinking about it

Chris
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 04-15-2006, 08:05 PM
tbirdscott's Avatar
stuff'n things'n whatnot
 
Last photo:
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: P-Dot B.C.
Age: 29
Posts: 356
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Slice
all the mustangs i've found that do not conflict with number five seem to be far, far out of my price range of five grand or less.
the mustang isnt the only V8 rwd car ford made. 83-88 t-bird or cougar are worth looking in to for something different. the 5.0's didnt come with 5spd's but a t5 and pedals from a stang are easily swapped in. Theyre also fox bodies so alot of the stang parts will swap over with little to no modofication, just a thought
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 04-16-2006, 09:16 PM
HemmiGremmie's Avatar  

Last journal entry: 52 truck
Last photo:
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Chillicothe Ohio
Age: 47
Posts: 1,406
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 3
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Dont be afraid to crawl under it and look around. Check out the frame, floor pans, look for tranny leaks, anything that looks bad.
Interior......Well its not a biggie to figure out.
Engine. Always look at the oil dipstick for clean oil (no water in it) and check the tranny dipstick. Smell it even to see if its been burning. Test drive the car (with the radio off) and listen for clattering, squeeks n noises.
After you bring it back, let it idle while you look around it more to see if it leaks after its warmed up and tosee if it runs hot.
I'll think of more later. Hg
__________________
I was built with the body of a God! To bad it was buddah.

[url]http://www.hotrodders.com/forum/journal.php?action=view&journalid=2415[/url]

Hemmies rat journal below.

[url]http://www.hotrodders.com/forum/journal.php?s=f6d0e9c7fec644bb0a70761c0431939b&journalid=84231&action=view[/url]
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #8 (permalink)  
Old 04-17-2006, 09:24 AM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Cape Girardeau, Missouri
Age: 25
Posts: 0
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Alright everybody, Thanks for the advice. This is definately somthing I'm gonna have to spend a long time looking at, particularly in regards to rust in this climate. And yeah, I just looked at horsepower figures for the eighties era cars - not exactly awe-inspiring. Even less so when you consider going with the smaller blocks for gas milage.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #9 (permalink)  
Old 04-17-2006, 12:36 PM
T-bucket23's Avatar
Hotrodders.com Moderator
 
Last wiki edit: Engine basic condition - how to check Last photo:
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Massachusetts
Age: 57
Posts: 5,204
Wiki Edits: 26

Thanks: 7
Thanked 116 Times in 101 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by HemmiGremmie
Dont be afraid to crawl under it and look around. Check out the frame, floor pans, look for tranny leaks, anything that looks bad.
Interior......Well its not a biggie to figure out.
Engine. Always look at the oil dipstick for clean oil (no water in it) and check the tranny dipstick. Smell it even to see if its been burning. Test drive the car (with the radio off) and listen for clattering, squeeks n noises.
After you bring it back, let it idle while you look around it more to see if it leaks after its warmed up and tosee if it runs hot.
I'll think of more later. Hg
oine more thing, if you are happy after passing all the above test, take it to a mechanic to put it up on a lift to take a peek. most on charge 25 or so bucks to take a look and it could be well worth it down the road.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #10 (permalink)  
Old 05-18-2006, 04:11 AM
New Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Everywhere
Posts: 0
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Alfa Romeo need help

HalloHallo, im really fan of Alfa Romeo. And now asking for your advice...If anybody knows any bad sides of this car, please write here. Thank you for your attention
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

Recent Hotrodders' Lounge posts with photos

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name (usually not your first and last name), your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
"Basics of Basics" Photographing your car. MARTINSR Hot Rod Art 89 03-31-2009 02:53 AM
Painting roof tips needed..... Bluepen Body - Exterior 7 09-10-2005 09:26 PM
Whats your fav Big Block Muscle Car? 79 Malibu327 Hotrodders' Lounge 22 04-05-2004 06:11 PM
New springs for beefy muscle car look 406chevelle Suspension - Brakes - Steering 5 03-28-2004 08:50 AM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:55 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2
Copyright Hotrodders.com 1999 - 2012. All Rights Reserved.