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Well-known member
Nov 23, 2001
San Diego, CA
Black Cherry 1969 Stingray
I had a general question about the appreciation of a customized car. Obviously a customized car isn't worth what a #'s matching original is, but does a custome vete appreciate. No doubt the same rate, Black Thunder was saying that a #'s matching original 69 L71-L89 was shooting up to 50k....how about a L71-L89 w/o 3's matching?
I purchased a custom vette simply because its the vette I wanted. I really did not care about numbers matching as I was looking for a good project within my budget versus a numbers matching. Sometimes I think to much emphasis is placed on numbers matching. In fact, some junk vettes with numbers matching are way overpriced compared to a nice, clean driver without numbers matcing. Furthermore, the value is usually what someone is willing to pay which gets very subjective. My Frankenvette is becoming a very clean and reliable car to drive. If I ever sell it (I hope I am buried in it), it may be worth more to someone than a numbers matching basketcase.


This is off the subject, but I have to say that is one beautiful Shark, Anthony. What depthness that Black color beholds! Another wonderful Vette here at the CACC. :) --Bullitt
My $.02

You all know I'm a purist when it comes to Vettes but I like to think than I can be pretty open-minded about it as well. I appreciate a tasteful (opinion) custom and even the occasional radical if it all flows - I've always thought the two cars built for Corvette Summer were incredible pieces of work. The catch with selling a custom is that the cars uniqueness usually translates to a harder purchaser match. I do believe, however, that customs will gain in value at the same rate, though perhaps with a lower base, than an original car. If you want proof of that, go to any auction and you will see it - unless the custom has some historical or race significance it will most likely be harder to sell. I have to agree with Jim that a junk stocker is often far overpriced just because it is original - unless the car is rare there is no real reason for that in my book but then I'm not Michael Antonick so no one is paying me for my opinion. Some people can get pretty hot under the collar on this subject but if it isn't their car, what does it matter. To each his own, enjoy your Vette the way you want it to be.
I agree

I agree with the saying to each his own. I haven't even taken delivery yet and have already caught some slack about it being overpriced because it is custom. I know that none of this matters because in the end it's the enjoyment that I get out of the car. It's too bad that people have to get worked up over the subject to the point that they want to begin an argument.
There is no right or wrong answer to this question. The problem with "custom vettes" is that often the one doing the custom work is Bubba. You know Bubba, he cuts and splices wire with duct tape, he does fiberglass and bodo repair with steel wool pads, he mixes laquers and enamels, and cuts corners at every opportunity. Also, many custom vettes became customs due to a severe collision, fire, water damage, theft recovery etc, where it was cheaper at the time to "customize" the car than put it back right. Look at the story behind yours in fact. It appears that the headlights have been smoothed over. The truth is that at one point in time the owner was either frustrated with inop stock units, or the car was hit. Rather than fixing the problem they went the route of doing away with them. This is not a bad thing, but one of the reasons they become "customs".

There are some customs out there that have been done right. I hope to put mine in that category when complete. That is well thought through, no cost spared, no stone overturned cars that are custom with a purpose. That is, they don't just look good but they drive and handle better than a stocker. Those bring money. The others are just half breeds or compromises due to budget, time, etc. We have all seen a custom vette that looked great going down the street, but was a rat hole on the inside. Or, a "numbers non matching" high horse power beast that looked like it was ready for the scrap heap on the outside. This is what most people think of when they hear custom, and automatically are not willing to spend as much as they would on an all original car.

In the end it is worth what you pay.

I don't think I would part for a peny under $50K when I finish mine. Would I ever get that? Who knows? Who really cares? Some people spend their money on booze, parties, golfing, sports, movies, collectables, etc, but you have choosen to pursue the Corvette legacy. Keep your receipts in the event the car is ever stollen or totalled out, but don't ever add them up! You never get back out of one what you put in, so enjoy the ride and welcome to the club.
Anthony don't get freaked out about value. In the end its what someone will pay for a car when its for sale.
You will find people called purists that will never accept a custom. I can see there side being valid. We have an NCRS event in Florida every Janurary & the cars there will take your breath away. Its like stepping back in time & visiting a new car showroom for the years they represent. Some of these cars have been restored & no expense was spared, taking them completely apart & making each piece as close to a new car as possible. These Vettes are incredible & their value is justified.
In the end it will be what makes you happy & the amount you want to invest. I salute folks like Chris above. He has undertaken a total restoration to a level that will make his car better than any 69 ever made. It will be a 69, but done his way. Improved,refined & made to be an exceptional Corvette.
The folks here are pretty forgiving when it comes to customs. As are most in the real world. My local Vette club proved that to me when a few I know are diehard purists, accepted my custom 68 & even ask me to be sure & come to the shows as customs have always been a part of Corvette history.
Your 69 is unique but you liked it enough to buy it. Its nasty lookin in black & when you raise that hood you will hear WOW!
My Vette!!!

Thanks Black Thunder and 69MyWay...I did buy the car because I liked it...and I'm very happy with what I have. I can't explain how I feel when I think about all the good times I'm gonna have with it, but then again I don't have to. I'm 20 years old; I've got a sweet car that's all mine and it'll take a helluva piece of machinery to stand up to it. Life is good! Down the line when I have the time and money I'll purchase another and make her just like the day she rolled out of the factory in Bowling Green if I feel like that's what I want to do...otherwise I'll just drive her to my heart's content. I'm glad that I found this site...I'll see all of ya'll at Shark Fest Labor day. I'll be there with colors flyin.:w

I just want to know where you're going to put the 5" er? :D

.......... Nut
Good question...

First of all, I have to say that is one GORGEOUS baby you got there, Anthony!

I've wondered the same thing (check out this thread if you haven't already - http://www.corvetteactioncenter.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=1713 ).

I believe that if a Vette is well taken care of, it won't depreciate. Also, a Vette is one of the only cars that you could get at least most of your money back out of if you HAD to. I'm hoping that day will never come for me!

Have fun!

I was reading through the thread that you told me about, and I got to the post talking about the 188 454/425 convertibles and I realized that I wouldn't be happy with a brown everything stock car. What's the point if you don't have something that you can enjoy every part of? So it's worth alot of money, oh well.
I guess you can say I'm not a purist.

One of the many reasons I bought my 79 was the fact it was not numbers matching. I wanted the car to be how I wanted it. As for value personally I would pay more for a much faster non numbers matching vette then a in need of help stock one.
Three quotes for yea “It’s your car do to it to make you happy non other people.” “ Stock is just a go starting point.” “Faster is always better.”
69MyWay said:
Keep your receipts in the event the car is ever stollen or totalled out, but don't ever add them up!

How true Chris, how may times have we seen adds that read "sacrifice for $17k, $23k in receipts." BTW, I liked your assessment Chris.

- Eric

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