Need advice on older model cars, please...

Discussion in 'Social Place' started by michael59, Aug 20, 2019.

  1. michael59

    michael59 Celestial

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    I tell everyone who will listen that I am so sick of these cars made after the year 1996. They're like plastic computers with wheels. Nothing but, fuses "chips" & "sensors" that constantly need fixing or replacing.

    They fly apart when you get in a minor accident and either get written off by insurance or they cost thousands of dollars in repairs.

    If I could, I would drive a tank. I want to feel protected. If something hits me, I want it to bounce off me and not even leave a scratch.

    My mechanic is old school and is really handy with the older model cars, but he's in high demand and I can't just bug him every time I have a question about cars. I want him to be my bud forever when it comes to fixing my cars. He's great with people and never over charges or talks down to you even if you are female. He's a rare find nowadays.

    I don't have much money so, luckily older model cars are pretty cheap and most parts are a dime a dozen. At least for now they are, but I know it also depends on the make & model.

    I also live in a high crime area so, I don't want to get a car that will cause too much attention or it will get vandalized or stolen.

    These are the vehicles that I have earmarked for now and I was hoping I could get some opinions from you guys & gals. I am doing the research as well and have crossed off the quite a few that are not reliable. I live in Canada and the weather is brutal year round. Summer is tornado, hail & severe thunderstorm/windstorm weather. It also gets really hot here in summer for example tomorrow it will be 30C which is around 90 degree Fahrenheit range. I have a weak heart so, the car must have air conditioning. In the winter temperatures can drop as low as -50 without a windchill factor and we get a lot of snow. That means it must have a block heater and it must have a good heater inside the car as well. Rear wheel drive is best for winter driving but, it's not a must since I do have emergency road service that provides 5 free calls a year. I don't own a cell phone but hey, it's Canada, when people see you stuck or stalled somewhere they are quick to offer help, believe it or not, even the teenagers are great about helping.

    I really want this cougar, yeah, I know...a cougar for a cougar...hahaha... it has air conditioning and rear wheel drive. But, they don't make them anymore so, parts? And theft? Could be a problem, right? He wants $1000 for it but I think I can get it for about $700 or maybe $800. What do you think?

    96 mercury cougar | Classic Cars | Edmonton | Kijiji

    I really like the oldsmoble cutlass supreme. I had a 95 but I had my first accident in April of 2017 and it was too costly to repair. I only get personal liability insurance because these cars are just beaters after all.

    This one is a 97 but I could forgive that if he will come down in price a little. It has had only one owner and all paperwork is available. I don't know what he means when he says, "it's not perfect by any means". Scares me a little and also he lives quite a distance away but I could probably get him to bring it to me...for a price. What do you think?

    1997 cutlass supreme | Cars & Trucks | St. Albert | Kijiji

    I love the idea of owning this one but, what the hell does he mean when he says it has a spark problem? Other than that it is perfect. Anyone know what a spark problem is? What do you think?

    1980 Ford LTD | Classic Cars | Edmonton | Kijiji

    See, I have a serious problem with motion sickness so, I cannot use public transit. I am not able to sit in a car unless it is in the front passenger seat and only for short distances. If I am driving, I have no issues whatsoever with motion sickness.

    I can't keep paying for taxi's it cost way too much. I can't even get to the post office. They closed the one next to me in April. I want to send pigfarmer money for postage but, I would have to take a taxi to the bank, find a phone, call a taxi and go to the post office, find a phone and call a taxi to get home again.

    I need a car!! lol
     
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  2. Sheltie

    Sheltie Celestial

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    I live in Virginia and we don't get much snow. We get a lot of ice, however, because the humidity comes up from the Gulf of Mexico and meets the Lake Effect Cold from the Midwest over top of us. :( I'll take driving on snow any day over driving on ice! It's always been my experience that front wheel drive is better for driving on ice.
     
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  3. michael59

    michael59 Celestial

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    I have had a few scary experiences with what we call black ice. It just seems to show up out of nowhere, especially if it's night time and the loss of control is instantaneous.

    One time I was on a hill in a major part of the city traffic at rush hour. I hit a patch of ice and it spun the car completely around. I was so lucky because all the traffic seemed to give me enough room and nothing was damaged or hit. We all just continued on our merry way. lol
     
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  4. pigfarmer

    pigfarmer tall, thin, irritable

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    Of the three hat '97 Cutlass doesn't look too bad. If the person kept all receipts and had it regularly maintained I wouldn't worry too much about them saying that is isn't perfect. You're only going to get so much for about a grand.

    At one time rear wheel drive cars and snow were something we had to put up with. Now we don't. So don't, IMO.
     
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  5. michael59

    michael59 Celestial

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    1,280
    So, that's 2 people saying that rear wheel drive isn't all I thought it was. Thanks guy's, I appreciate it.

    I like the cutlass too. If it has a clear windshield, I can probably deal with anything else it has issues with. I know it doesn't sound like a lot of money for most but, it took me over three years to save it and I got a little help from a small inheritance so, this is it. If I end up with a lemon, I'm fucked.

    I'm scared to make any decisions by myself because my last decision to help out a friend a few years back is what got me into this situation. I find myself doubting my own instincts and I am having big time trust issues with... everyone?

    I used to say, "Expect nothing from anyone and you will never be disappointed." I was wrong. I was and still am devastated by what has happened to me.

    I appreciate any input I can get at this point. Thanks again.

    With any luck, I might have enough money left over to update my computer to Windows 10. It will be nice because I am slowly by surely being pushed off the net by not being able to update any browsers.
     
  6. coubob

    coubob Celestial

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    1,645
    I like the cougar. but i had a 80 tbird that had a 400 small block in it, omg so much fun
     
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  7. michael59

    michael59 Celestial

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    Yea, my brother had one. The ladies loved it. :)
     
  8. michael59

    michael59 Celestial

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    1,280
    So, nobody knows what the guy means by spark problem on the ford ltd?
     
  9. spacecase0

    spacecase0 earth human

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    946
    so,
    do you have smog checks where you live ?
    I only ask because anything in the range of about 1975 and 2000 are just not worth it if you do

    rear wheel drive tends to have over steer
    front wheel drive tends to have under steer
    all wheel drive changes in the middle of the corner at some point...
    it really is about knowing what you have and how to drive it

    any subaru cars out there to buy ?
    that all wheel drive is quite good in the snow
    and if you put studded ice tires on it, it will drive on about anything till the snow gets deep enough to clog the radiator

    if you are looking to "feel protected", then I suggest you follow feelings to that point
    if you are looking to actually be protected, then get some car that puts power to all 4 wheels and have a roll cage installed so you are actually safe.
    as a warning, tuned suspension and a car that actually grips the road often feels worrying when driving, but you are in total control, and you know how much control you have (why it feels worrying).
    cars that feel safe often are designed to feel that way. they do so by creating a false stability zone that is most of driving (a toe in at the front wheels is how they usually do this). try putting one of these cars in a flat spin or sliding it around a corner to see what it really can do.

    have you thought about an offensive driving course ?
    learning driving skills is often way better money spent than buying a better car
     
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  10. spacecase0

    spacecase0 earth human

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    946
    a spark problem means that spark is not getting to the spark plugs
    fords from that era are designed to break and need parts (mostly to force you to give up on them and go buy a new car)
    could be anything from the ignition switch to the spark plug wires.
     
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  11. michael59

    michael59 Celestial

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    Here, when you are only getting personal liability insurance, there are no checks or inspections needed. Few. lol

    Yes I have taken defensive driving lessons. When I say I want protection, I mean that I want a vehicle that won't fall apart when it gets dinged in a parking lot or like the time I was pulling into a parking stall at the mall and the person parked beside me opened the door right when I pulled in. There was no avoiding it. Or the time I was at a stop sign and a van ran into the back of me. Both those times, I was driving a car from the early 80's. I didn't even get a scratch. They just wiped the dust off my car. Their cars were damaged, but it was their own fault so, I didn't have to get involved with insurance because they didn't want to.

    Today's model of car is built to fly apart when it's hit. The repair bill is phenomenal and it's usually written off by insurance.

    I just need a car to run errands and get to doctor appointments. I probably only put about 500 kilometers a year on a car and I rarely ever leave the city.

    This one showed up a few days ago and it's close by. The draw backs for me are the high kilometers and the fact that it is a 2001. It does look like it has been taken care of though.

    For sale | Classic Cars | Edmonton | Kijiji
     
  12. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    I agree with pigfarmer, I would look closer at the Cutlass Supreme vehicle, out of the four vehicles you provided links for that one stands out to me as one good possibility...

    ...
     
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  13. Double Nought Spy

    Double Nought Spy Easily Amused

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    The Cutlass would be my choice from those cars. I don't miss rear wheel drive. GM stuff from the 90s is generally good and reliable. Parts are easy to find. It looks like a nice car, and having the same owner for 20 years is usually a good sign.
     
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  14. pigfarmer

    pigfarmer tall, thin, irritable

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    I had a ,92 Tbird with a V6 that gave me 32mpg on the open highway. Great car but rear wheel drive. Like a hog on ice in the in winter.
     
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  15. pigfarmer

    pigfarmer tall, thin, irritable

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    I know exactly what it means. It means RUN away from that piece of s*** !!

    Even fixing it yourself could get quite pricey. I just fixed a 'spark problem' on my old 'vette and please believe me when I tell you, if I had had to hire someone to do all that I' d have to sell the damned thing just to pay the bill.
     
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  16. michael59

    michael59 Celestial

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    The Cougar's not listed anymore. It must have been sold.

    I know this will sound stupid, but here's why I hesitate about getting the Cutlass...

    I am 60 years old and until 2017 had never caused a car accident. I was driving a 1996 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme. The police wrote it up as a "light" T-Bone collision and rightly so. I hit a SUV in the exact spot they would hit a vehicle to cause the "pit maneuver" . No one was hurt but, it caused $13,000 worth of damages to their vehicle and my Cutlass front end was gone right up to and including one of the front the fenders! The hood was bent to the point that it would not open. The windshield was cracked in several places because of the impact. It severed off the block heater cord so there would be no way to plug it in come winter time. I could probably have forced the hood open but, then would I be able to ever get it closed again was the big question.

    I drove the car home it worked perfectly. The headlights still worked and so did the signal lights. The repair estimate was beyond $3000. I only paid $1600 for it 3 years earlier so, I figured I got my monies worth out of it and scrapped it.

    I think I still have a little bit of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder from that accident because I am really having trouble picking up the phone and contacting this person to inquire about his 1997 Cutlass.
     
  17. Double Nought Spy

    Double Nought Spy Easily Amused

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    Sounds like a pretty tough car! Drove it home after that. And you were not hurt. It could have been much worse. I'd go take it for a spin and see how I liked it. If it's too freaky, you can just say no.

    I would not mention the accident to the seller. :)
     
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  18. pigfarmer

    pigfarmer tall, thin, irritable

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    It's just a machine. Your last Cutlass didn't cause the problem it survived it nicely.
     
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  19. coubob

    coubob Celestial

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    There is a car listed on facebook in the marketplace i`d luv to have, the car is only 5-7 miles away, its $9,000 for a 1967 Camaro RS/SS numbers matching, project. Like when the hell are ya going to run past a true matching #`s 67 RS/SS for under 10g`s, but accually they alot of nice cars on there.
     
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  20. pigfarmer

    pigfarmer tall, thin, irritable

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    I suppose this is thread hijacking but this isn't one of those that will go on dozens of pages.

    For $9K it must be some project. Numbers matching is one of those things that people can be very passionate about. Sometimes it's justified and sometimes not. For example, I have a friend with a 1970 Plum Krazy 440 Six-Pack Challenger. He also has a 1963 Galaxie 500 with the T-bird 'golden' 390. Original owner. Drove them home from the dealership. Has every scrap of paperwork. Weather permitting we'll meet up next week and maybe I can post a pic or two. Now there's a case where #s matching is important and nobody would argue. Especially his insurance agent.

    I looked at a 1970 base model convertible Corvette and it's Day 1 original with all paperwork. The guy wanted $30K for it. Well, it might be worth that to somebody but sure as hell not me. Plus, you then have a time machine and you'll feel every last ding and have heart failure when something breaks - and it will. Eventually I found the car I have now for a bit over half that price. It was also a project and it's not #s matching. But here's the distinction that made it work for me. I looked up every last date or build code I could find - it's an L46. It has a CE engine, meaning the original owner blew it up and GM replaced it under warranty. They just did the block and attached the original camel hump heads, distributor, manifolds, etc. Body was built in Oct 68 and so was the 350 engine. The Muncie 4 speed M20 is from a 67 passenger car. Not 'numbers matching' but 'period correct' At least it ain't an '80s vintage Mr.Goodwrench motor or something out of an old plow truck that led a hard life. They were both rebuilt before I bought it and are super tight. Compression tested at 215 psi per cylinder with almost no variation. Previous owner had it bored .030 over and changed the pistons. 11:1 is probably about right. I have it running perfectly on 93 octane E10 gas.. THAT took some fiddling.

    It was priced accordingly. I work on it myself and it runs, drives and smells like it drove right out of 1969. My buddy with the #s matching cars rarely ever takes them out. The '70 C3 is still sitting for sale - and still all original. If you could ask the car it would say 'drive me please don't me let me sit and rot.' Entropy never takes a day off.

    I always say machines were meant to be used. And to end this - because obviouslyI can drone on - I recently saw an early C3 with something like 1,000 mile on it. A real time capsule. You can see the poor fitment of the body panels and a fairly unexciting lacquer paint job. Mass produced fun things never intended to last, especially this long.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2019

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