I know that I have done articles like this in the past, and this one may or may not be different from them. My goal here is you help you with the questions that you have as you restore your classic or antique car.
The only thing that will change from a classic to an antique is how hard the parts are to find. The older the car gets, the harder it is to find good replacement parts for it. For this reason, it does make an antique a little harder to restore.
There are aftermarket dealers that deal in both classic and antique cars, but the one thing that you’ll notice is that they don’t remake every part. You’ll just have to search for some things yourself. This can make for a hard and frustrating search, but don’t let it kill your project.
My personal favorites are classic American muscle cars, but they are not the only cars on the block. We have 55, 56, and 57 Chevrolet Edsel, and many more. There are way too many to list here but you get the idea. The main thing here is that you enjoy building the car.
Below I will add a bullet list of things that could slow the process down, and in doing so cause you a bunch of agony.
Make sure that you keep the restoration process in your experience level, this is where a lot of projects go by the way side. If it gets out of your experience level, be sure that you have a person who you can get the answers that you need from.
If your restoring the car as an investment, make sure that all the numbers on the car are matching, and make sure that most of the car is there before you buy it.
You have got to realize this one thing; if you customize the car in any way, it can and probably will lose some of its value, but it will still appreciate over the years
If you’re just restoring it for fun, the sky is the limit. You can customize the car any way that you’d like.
Inspect the car closely before you buy it. Most used cars are sold As Is, and you will not have the option to return it.
If you’re not an experienced body restoration technician, try to buy a car with as little rust as possible. This does mean that a $3,000 car is out of the question, You’ll need to plan on spending about $10,000 to start with.
Before you buy the car look on the Internet, and locate dealers that sell parts for your car. This will make the entire process go a lot smoother.
Look for misaligned body panels which indicates that the panels have been removed. It usually means that the car has been wrecked. This can save you money.
Make sure that you get the car that the seller is representing. My best advice is: Don’t buy a misrepresented car as it can only go downhill from there.
Most of the work falls upon you to make sure that your getting what you paid for. Be diligent and learn all you can about the car. Don’t feel dumb for asking questions, feel dumb if you don’t.
The most important thing here is that you get the car that you want and have fun restoring it.
I could go on forever, but there is no point. The biggest reason that cars don’t get finished is because the owner gets sick of the car, or he/she feels like they’re getting ripped off. Do your homework so this never happens to you. I love old cars and I spend a lot of time trying to help people with them, I figure that if I know something and I can help you by answering a question, it helps to insure that classic and antique cars will be around for a long time to come.