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Discussion Starter #1
As you all know I'm DESPERATE for a car, rusty or shiny, in pieces or driving, I just want a car I can work on.
BUT the hugest biggest problem of all is the, so my dad told me I wasnt allowed to get one this summer. I might be allowed to get one next summer depending on some factors.

I want a car that is not out of my league and will cost me $$$ to restore or get running, but I dont want a car that only needs new tires and an oil change:nono: I want a good not-to-hard challengine beginner project. Originally I wanted an old truck (and still do!) but turns out they're not that cheap to get. So I looked more into the 60's and 70's trucks, they're pretty cheap and can make for some nice rides if shaved and dropped.
I also looked into muscle cars of the 60's and customs of the 50's. Again these might be some too hard projects. My dad wants me to get an 80's car, like an late 70's early 80's Camaro or something. Thinking of all of this and hanging out on hr.com I came across a site called Volksrods (a user suggested it, cant remember who though, all I know is that he has a VW powered yellow rod:confused: )

So here's my reasoning:
1) Beetles arent too expensive to get
2) There are many replacement parts available
3) Their mechanical operation isnt too complicated (flathead 4)
4) They were orignally designed in the 30's and have some nice shapes of that era
5) They're the second most popular engine for which aftermarket products are avalialbe afer the SBC
6) They can be made to look old skool
7) They seem like a well suited beginner project.

Now here are some pics of what they can look like if done the right treatment;









Above pics were taken from www.volksrods.com and www.socalook.com

:) Now of course there needs to be a lotta work done to them so that they look good but here's my plan:

1) Remove fenders and fill in the holes
2) Chop the top, if the chop fails cutt the whole roof off and go covertible style
3) Install an I-beam dropped axel in the front
4) Install some bomber seats in the front
5) Primer flat black
6) Drive!

I dont know how cheap/expensive this will add up but some of the above rods were built under 4k.
Seems like a cheap, good looking alternative to expensive rods in my opinion.

So what do you guys think? Too hard? Too crazy? Looks like crap? What can be done? What should be done? Should I ditch the idea and get a real rod?

Again this is just a crazy idea I had which I thought would be cool to learn a little something about cars. I know it aint no V8 but I think it'll give me some insights on how to build a rod.




Mike
 

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I wanted an egg-salad sandwich
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You did hit on one point here.

That suede look, looks good on anything it is applied to.

There are some cheap cars out there that will get you into the hobby, but not break your wallet. Falcons tend to be cheap, come in ALL sorts of styles 2dr, 4dr, truck, convertable, after 1963 you can get a 289 V8 (which you can replace with a 351) if you want cheaper and dont mind boats, look at 70's Grand Marquis, Lincolns, LTDs, they're all fords. Chrysler made some cool boats too, but parts may be harder. but you can check out 70's New Yorkers and Polaras (you could get 440's in each) In my neck of the woods chevys are quite popular and tend to cost more, but you can find 80's Malibu for fairly cheap, and they came with some big engines (also available in wagon and truck form)

Now, with bugs, my understanding is they are a PAIN to LOWER, because of the engine being in the back. If they are lowered cheaply you have to slant the wheels and that causes uneven wear. I am sure there is a "real" way to lower them but I assume it is $$ because anything done to the rear requires the engine to be removed. ALso in my neck of the woods, you cannot get bugs cheap..evem rusted out hulks cost 1k. so if you can find one cheap. good luck! I personally think the look you want is cool, and does look cool, but at the end of the day, its still "on a bug" If you look hard enough you should be able to find some american metal to add that look to.
 

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Just one of the guys
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Not to go against Crazy as he has a lot of valid points. But a VW is a cool ride. I've owned three and wish I could pick up another good one. They are getting scarce and the ones that do have them want to hang onto them. They are a piece of cake to work on. You don't get much simpler of a ride. Parts are abundant from a large variety of sources. As far as safety...you can roll one and walk away. You get hit and you might not be so lucky especially t-boned. But it is that way with a majority of your smaller cars. If you do happen to pick one up I guarantee you will not regret it. They are a blast to have and drive.

Kevin
 

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I wanted an egg-salad sandwich
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I wasnt Knockin bugs! I like bugs A LOT. Never owned one, but have lots of friends who have, and in efforts of not getting this thread dumped lets just say "I became a man" in a bug!!

I think Kevin has some points as far as parts availability and fun of the ride. My point was I think bugs are their own "genre" of hotrodding. They have such a diverse following and adapt easily to many styles. So if you showed up to a VW show in a suede bug, you'd probably get props. If you showed up to a "hot rod show" you'd probably get called names or treated as a "novelty", that was the point I was trying to make...

Hey here's one from me!
 

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Mike, if you still want an old truck, look at fords from 61-66 or 67-72 I may be a little biased there :mwink: but you can generally pick them up fairly cheap (mine cost $650) and get them in the shape your looking for, a good learner vehicle. just my .02

ps I dont know how hard they'd be to find in canada though.
 

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Cheap decent cars.....

Ford.....78-83 Faimont/Zephre

Mopar....70s Duster/Volarie

GM.....70s Nova/"X" body clones

Pickup trucks....S10 Chevy...Ford ranger.

I love VW bugs too, but they are getting pretty pricey.
 

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Dang! Those bugs are pretty cool.

I think it looks like you're on the right track. Pickups are a great idea too since they're usually dirt cheap in 2WD form.

One general piece of advice, stay away from rust. A solid vehicle is always a bargain in the end compared to a rusty one. It also will keep you on your goal of actually DRIVING a cool car. Especially if you're a perfectionist type like me. You can really get bogged down in battling the rust and not doing the fun stuff.

Also make sure you get something that inspires you. Sounds like you're inspired by the bug more than the truck idea, maybe? Inspiration will keep you going when it gets to a tough spot, which it will at some point.

Good luck and have fun with it!


Later...
Wally
 

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Be the MIRACLE!
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Nightfire, I think the old bugs are cool too. I also use to have a little convertible at one time. I painted it blue and airbrushed a winter scene on the side of it. One thing you might want to take into consideration is (your being in Canada). The heaters in them aren't much to speak of on a cold winter day. Brrrrrr!! As far as seeing one at a car show. I tend to gravitate to the unexpected and out of the ordinary rides. I know the person who owns them did it just for the plain fun of it! :thumbup: I get a kick from, out of the ordinary rides as well as the totally cool ones!
 

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Got Ouzo for touzo
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Agreed Mike, bugs can be cool. You say you want a cheap project huh.Check thisguys stuff out, theres always new cars on there. http://www.edsprojectcars.com/project_cars_for_sale.htm

I would like a few of his cars..... but I got too many as it is. I don't know what kinda money your gonna spend, but most of this guys cars seem reasonable. I'm no Dodge fan, but check out that old gasser! And the 61 Biscayne:drool: plus he's pretty close being in Alberta.


bonuts
 

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current hot rod: CTS-V
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poncho62 said:
Cheap decent cars.....

Ford.....78-83 Faimont/Zephre

Mopar....70s Duster/Volarie

GM.....70s Nova/"X" body clones

Pickup trucks....S10 Chevy...Ford ranger.

I love VW bugs too, but they are getting pretty pricey.
cough*Caprice*cough



Bugs that have the smaller taillights are cool.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks Bonuts, some great cars on that website. Yeah that mopar gasser is pretty cool, and it aint too expensive either.:D

About bugs being expensive, they're not THAT expensive around here, at least I know where I can find a couple for around $500-700. There's a whole bug-junkyard here in Southern Manitoba so I think I'm covered there.

The reason why I thought this was a good project is because old trucks (50's chevy and ford) arent that cheap in a good condition. On the other hand 60's trucks are pretty decent price. But the bugs look like fairly cheap cars to hop up a bit and they have mechanical simplicity.

Crazygut, I know cars from the 70's are hot (those that look like boats) but most of the ones I find are a rustbucket:drunk:

Thanks for the replies,





Mike
 

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Don't buy the bug. You will end up a little off kilter for the rest of your life. Just kidding but I never though a mechanic should have to work on his knees (unless he is the HEAD mechanic, as in giving):D :D
My vote would be for a late 70s-early 80s Malibu or a Montecarlo up to 87. Ditto for the 80s Mustangs Easy cars to buy, find parts for, maintain and soup up. Check insurance rates before you buy tho. It may make a difference in your choice.
 
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