Sad Sale of Speedster

This is a 1959 Porsche Speedster replica out of Vintage Speedsters in Hawaiian Gardens, CA. In 2006 the car was partially assembled at the Vintage Speedsters shops on a restored 1959 Karmann Ghia pan and then transported to TPC Racing in
Jessup MD., for completion, upgrades and sale by Automotive Legends in California. It carries an 1835cc dual port motor with Kadron 40 dual carbs. It has an upgraded, ceramic coated, cip1 dual exhaust, newer Michelin XZX tires, chrome cip1
wide-5 wheels, Koni red gas shocks and an adjustable and lowered front beam. The interior has a wood/polished Nardi steering wheel, Coco mats, a chrome fire extinguisher, mp3 stereo and upgraded carpets with original Speedster seats.

The car has been cherished, garaged and well maintained it's whole life. It has only covered 6047 miles. No rust, wear or interior flaws. It recently slid off the road, at low speed, into two poles on a back road in Northern Virginia. The damage
was all cosmetic. The pan, suspension and tube frame structure of the car sustained no damage. The catch is that the insurance had lapsed and damage won't be covered. I'd rather not part the car out as it is quite repairable. The problem is
with one child just starting college and another about to, I don't have the time or money to do this. Let me know what you may want to do. Open to suggestions and offers. Parts alone on this are worth quite a bit of $.

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Original Post

I have repaired a number of similar wrecked speedsters . However there is always quite a bit of hidden damage both in the fiberglass and slight pan issues that is not  visible at first inspection. The most recent wreck I did was a VS super wide body that met a Caddy the Caddy won.  The entire nose was replaced almost back to the cowling as well as the entire front suspension and frame head.  Other words a lot more that initially meets the eye. I'll PM my additional thoughts.

Alan Merklin posted:

I have repaired a number of similar wrecked speedsters . However there is always quite a bit of hidden damage both in the fiberglass and slight pan issues that is not  visible at first inspection. The most recent wreck I did was a VS super wide body that met a Caddy the Caddy won.  The entire nose was replaced almost back to the cowling as well as the entire front suspension and frame head.  Other words a lot more that initially meets the eye. I'll PM my additional thoughts.

Been restoring both wrecks and straight cars for years. I am 99.9% sure there are no hidden issues. Speed was not a factor and the car has been very well inspected.

Alan Merklin posted:

I sent you a PM with repair details and estimate costs fro same. IMHO you're looking at a bare bones minimum of $13,200 parts paint and some sublet labor to repair.

Don't entirely agree with your cost estimate, nor will I debate them here. But thank you for your time and input.

Changing the body would be more expensive based on the cost of the complete body and shipping it. Repairs for damage like that can be an eye opener,  as it was for me on the previous VS and I did quite a bit myself other than R & I of the fiberglass nose section which is best left to a highly skilled and experienced body guy. 

Not sure what the objective is Greg. ?
If you want to keep it, you can repair it. Sure you will be upside down financially, but still quite a bit cheaper than getting another car.  And this one does appear to be decked out nicely. Might be a fun challenge once you get past the 'oh ****' stage.

If you are trying to regain as much money as possible. Probably best to film a video of engine running. Then take it apart and sell the pieces: shocks, engine, doors, steering wheel cocos, ... . It is a hassle and will take a bit of time, but it does start adding up.
 
If you simply want to be rid of this poor experience - the guy looking to buy a wrecked car, will be looking for a killer deal. So ... not sure how much it is worth where it sits. Deep pockets will not be attracted to it. Personally I see a smashed car, not a bunch of cool parts. I would bet that is how it appears to a lot of people.
Unfortunately , there are lots of VS out there at good prices.

Sadly ... anyway you go, it is not a happy story. 
Sorry about that.

I hope no one was hurt. 

Body work does take time and a skilled guy is needed for sure I wonder how much VS would charge to do the work ... that might give you an idea of what your really into. 

It might be worth it to ship it back there,  you never know if your not in a hurry you might get a I am not in a hurry price  

IaM-Ray posted:

Body work does take time and a skilled guy is needed for sure I wonder how much VS would charge to do the work ... that might give you an idea of what your really into. 

It might be worth it to ship it back there,  you never know if your not in a hurry you might get a I am not in a hurry price  

Ray:  There ain't no such thing as an 'I am not in hurry price'.  Any body guy will tell you that, regardless of whether you are, or are not, in a hurry, it still takes the same amount of materials, shop labour, and time to repair a car.  

All you get for an 'I am not in a hurry price', is a much slower repair job...you'll pay the same. 

Telling a body shop you're not in a hurry is committing a huge sin, you will celebrate ( plural) Birthday's and Major Holiday's. A cash in fist deposit to get things started and dropping off the car with a case of cold ones and a promise of timely future beverage deliveries and cash payments has, assured me of timely service.

I once took a rough Street Beasts speedster body to my one man body shop ( Randy) who agreed to stop all other work to turn my project from rough to show quality. It needed door and hood  margins, much block sanding, multi primer guide coats paint and clear coats , color sanded and got it back in five (5) days and it was stunning! ( Al Shapiro's show quality black beauty)

Well armed with a few estimates it is possible to get such a deal so long as the shop is hungry or has a period where there is little work available... at least that is my experience but then there is always a flip side and yes getting a firm committment for finishing with a payment schedule is an absolute.  

IaM-Ray posted:

Well armed with a few estimates it is possible to get such a deal so long as the shop is hungry or has a period where there is little work available... at least that is my experience but then there is always a flip side and yes getting a firm committment for finishing with a payment schedule is an absolute.  

Yes.  This can happen, and it has.  Nothing more eager than a slow shop, but maybe we should wonder why the shop is slowed down.  Finding a good body shop takes a lot of work sometimes. 

Having stretched Bridget's fenders over new wire wheels last winter, and having done a fair amount of other body work over the years (like this rust-out fix and this meatball truck-straightening job from a few years ago), I can say confidently, no joke: I can fix it.

But, also: having done those previous jobs, I'll also say that the hours involved to get that car back straight will be substantial. I think Alan's guesstimate is in the ballpark.

The key thing is finding a new nose. The car needs the whole front two feet, at least. With that in-hand you could get started. I'd be interested if I didn't have the Spyder.

Uncle Stan wrote: "In my experience, "get to it when you can" means "trailering the car out of the shop a year later", in EXACTLY the same state you trailered it in."

Sometimes it takes even longer...

In MY case and waaay before I had the benefit of THIS group, those exact same words came back to haunt me TWO years later when I finally got disgusted and told them I was coming in two days with a trailer for it, as-was (bodywork and paint, about half finished).  Fortunately for them, I had been working insane hours for those two years but then the project finished and I looked around and said, HEY!  WTF!  Got called back by the owner who asked if I was willing to trust him (????) with four more days and it would be finished and painted.  I did, in a very grumpy mood, and sure enough, he was good to his word and anyone who has seen Pearl thinks that the paint and the work they did is great.  21 years on the paint and it STILL looks great! 

Rick, the owner, recently closed and retired to Cape Cod for the good life, so I guess I'll have to find a different place for a 'freshening' some day.

Amen Gordon!
I ran a repair shop for 12 years (guitar repair) , and when someone says "take your time",  it means - I don't have the money right now. So it went on the back shelf , until they let us know they really wanted it.
A reverse on that is, "I gotta have it Thursday..." Late nights and a weekend getting it done. Thursday comes and goes..., and no sign of the knucklehead.
I have had clients wind up in jail, die, move out of the country, ... and then I get stuck with the repair bill not being paid (had to pay my employees out of my pocket) and an instrument that was difficult to sell (legally) ....
It is a challenging dance on both sides.

If you really want the car back, don't issue those fatal words, be friendly,  stop by the shop to say hello on occasion (even bring a Starbucks..)  - and (this is key) don't pay in advance.

IMHO

My previous body shop guy, the  scenario would be I would trailer the rolling speedster to his shop, and look at it covered outside for three to four weeks, then I would show up with a trailer to remove it. Tom' would come running out of the office saying "I'm bringing it it today " My reply would be " You have five days and every day thereafter I an deducting $200 from the quote" ....and that folks took care of that until I found an honest one man body shop.

MotoCarlo posted:

Amen Gordon!
I ran a repair shop for 12 years (guitar repair) , and when someone says "take your time",  it means - I don't have the money right now. So it went on the back shelf , until they let us know they really wanted it.
A reverse on that is, "I gotta have it Thursday..." Late nights and a weekend getting it done. Thursday comes and goes..., and no sign of the knucklehead.
I have had clients wind up in jail, die, move out of the country, ... and then I get stuck with the repair bill not being paid (had to pay my employees out of my pocket) and an instrument that was difficult to sell (legally) ....
It is a challenging dance on both sides.

If you really want the car back, don't issue those fatal words, be friendly,  stop by the shop to say hello on occasion (even bring a Starbucks..)  - and (this is key) don't pay in advance.

IMHO

Your in the entertainment business with most of them being poor musicians  Hard to make a living taking the money after the repair... you nearly need to collect ahead on those guys as well, before doing the work otherwise you'd be subject to a DadGag

Maybe there's actually two up here, Ray. Some of you may be aware that my car got wrecked pretty badly back in Sept. of 2014. In a nutshell, I got four estimates. A well known Corvette fixer from the West end said $10K and he wanted the car for 6 months. A local VW guru said he needed $7,500 and could not promise a date but it would be done by Springtime.

Another local body shop who's owner was trying to retire/get out of it had plenty of fiberglass experience and said he really didn't want to take on the job but would do it for $7K.

Frustrated, I asked the local Carquest lads and they said I should consult the local lads in the back shop about a block away and don't judge them by their looks when you get there. They looked a bit like those two older lads from Duck Dynasty. I showed them a couple of pictures and they agreed to come over to my house for a look. They looked it over and conferred outside for a minute and came back in. Yes, they'll do it, it'll take about 2 months from about Jan 15 to March 15. They'd need some cash up front though...$500 . One more installment of $1,000 when ready for paint and one final payment of $1000 on delivery. That included all FG body repairs and a colour change paint job...inside and out. 

My car was never and won't ever be a show car and a keen eye will see that but I just don't care. It's nothing but a "driver" to me and while I don't go looking for them, I'll drive the bugger on a dirt road too if I have to. In a nut shell, after the wreck,  the insurance company treating me well and me seeing to the fixing of it, I have a net investment in the car of about $5,000. including the Frankenmotor. Not bad considering the mileage I've put on it. The next time some expert at Carlisle wipes his finger along my fender and says to me..."Yew need to clay bar that thang", I'll just turn away and laugh like I did the last time. 

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David Stroud posted:

Maybe there's actually two up here, Ray. Some of you may be aware that my car got wrecked pretty badly back in Sept. of 2014. In a nutshell, I got four estimates. A well known Corvette fixer from the West end said $10K and he wanted the car for 6 months.

Any shop that wants only X dollars but won't get your car back to you for 6 months is really saying that they won't look at your car for 5 of them ..... 

WNGD posted:
David Stroud posted:

Maybe there's actually two up here, Ray. Some of you may be aware that my car got wrecked pretty badly back in Sept. of 2014. In a nutshell, I got four estimates. A well known Corvette fixer from the West end said $10K and he wanted the car for 6 months.

Any shop that wants only X dollars but won't get your car back to you for 6 months is really saying that they won't look at your car for 5 of them ..... 

Not sure and I don't know the whole process but he said the car needed to have time to completely cure slowly before paint or we risk the chance of spider cracks etc. BS...maybe, I just don't know.

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