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Help! Is this 1973 worth 4K

ptorlax18

Active member
Joined
Jul 28, 2006
Messages
32
Location
Deer Park, Long Island
Corvette
1986 Silver and Black Coupe
Hey guys i already have a 86 coupe im looking at this 1973 coupe the guy is asking 4k. it obviuosly needs a ton of work. it has no interior. its a 4 speed with 70,000 miles. im not sure if it has a 454 or a 350 im guessing a 350 but the guy hasent gotten back to me yet. Let me know what you guys think im new to the C3 world. Thanks Alot
 

bossvette

Gone but not forgotten
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May 19, 2003
Messages
3,233
Location
West Unity Ohio
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1968 1997
be sure the frame is solid check just in front of the rear wheels where it "Kicks up" thats about right for a project car but be prepared to spend a bundle to get it where you want it. If you can do the work yourself and spread it out over time you can have a real nice shark.
the 73 is a one year car with steel bumpers in the back and soft in the front, many feel it is the closest in looks to the show car which the C3 was designed from.
 

Pseudomind

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Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Messages
668
Location
Jacksonville, FL
Corvette
2002 MY Roadster
I am sure Bossvette knows more about this then I, as I am not really the mechanical type, but in my opinion, the answer is, "No!" Looks like a lot of either Bondo or poor fiberglass work was attempted. The drivers side front fender looks as if it has been shattered and is still coming apart. Of course this is just my opinion, maybe a few others will chime in.
 

fine69

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Joined
Dec 12, 2004
Messages
975
Location
Maryland / D.C.
Corvette
'69 Convertible Vette; '72 Z28 Camaro Rally Sport
Hey guys i already have a 86 coupe im looking at this 1973 coupe the guy is asking 4k. it obviuosly needs a ton of work. it has no interior. its a 4 speed with 70,000 miles. im not sure if it has a 454 or a 350 im guessing a 350 but the guy hasent gotten back to me yet. Let me know what you guys think im new to the C3 world. Thanks Alot

I'd say you're looking at $15K just to get the bodywork, paint, and interior up to par.

You'll want to know the condition of the engine, drive train, steering, brakes, electrical components, vacuum. Look for the obvious of course, like leaks, worn / cracked suspension bushings, etc. It would good to hear the engine run on a cold start. Ask the owner to pop the hood and feel the engine to check if it's warm. Then start the engine....

Also look for rust around the birdcage, and windshield header and pillars. If the interior is missing, it may provide you with an opportunity to get a close look at things.

If the owner is willing, ask to jack up the rear, check both wheels for excessive play. I understand replacing rear bearings requires an expert and can be costly.

Depending on the extent of the necessary (and elective) repairs and upgrades, adding to the $4K cost of the car, this is easily a project that could be in the mid $20K range.

Decisions... decisions.... spread out the costs over time to bring the old girl back, or pay the same amount and get a car that's ready to show?...

Good luck, and keep us updated on what you decide!
:w
 

BruceBed

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 3, 2003
Messages
398
Location
Southeast Pa.
Corvette
1973 White Roadster 2- top highly optioned
By the time your done with that project you could've bought an exceptional Vette and been done with it. Unless you want to or need to build a project- this looks like a money pit. Good luck whatever your choice is.
 

bossvette

Gone but not forgotten
Joined
May 19, 2003
Messages
3,233
Location
West Unity Ohio
Corvette
1968 1997
Having been a Hot Rodder for 40+ years the Idea of buying a finished car is foreign to me unless its a daily driver like my C5 (104,000 miles and counting) most of the enjoyment comes from working on the cars and seeing an old bucket of bolts come back to life. You asked if the 73 was worth $4000 and thats about the bottom price for a pre 76 C3 coupe project car; presuming the frame is OK. Try finding a Midyear project under $20,000 ;)

It will take a bunch of money to get it into "Show Condition" but if you want a Driver you can get serviceable parts from Ebay that the "Show Guys " sell.
I replaced the whole interior with a mix of new and old in my 76 for about $800-900 if you do the work yourself the enjoyment is hard to put a value on and your Wife will know you are out in the garage working on your "Girl" not out chasing them. ;)
 

ptorlax18

Active member
Joined
Jul 28, 2006
Messages
32
Location
Deer Park, Long Island
Corvette
1986 Silver and Black Coupe
hey guys thanks alot for some great advice. And for having my wife worry about me lets just say im not there yet . im a college student, but i am in love with vettes i dont know if can let this oppurtunity pass. me and my dad fixed up my 86 (we did all the work, interior exterioir brakes etc...)and that was in some pretty crappy condition so i was looking for a new mountain to climb. im still thinking it over but i will let you guys know. once again thanks alot for the info
 

ptorlax18

Active member
Joined
Jul 28, 2006
Messages
32
Location
Deer Park, Long Island
Corvette
1986 Silver and Black Coupe
update! just got off teh phone with the guy 3k for everything hasent run in a couple of years but the guys thinks a new carb and battery should do teh trick but he is also is throwing in teh fiberglass front bumber and a how carpet set for the interior what do u guys think now? im goin copy the vin # to see what is really in teh car. if im not mistaken its between teh hood and teh front glass...i hope bit of a long drive but really excited talk to you guys later
 

ptorlax18

Active member
Joined
Jul 28, 2006
Messages
32
Location
Deer Park, Long Island
Corvette
1986 Silver and Black Coupe
ok got the vin#1Z37J3S410533. now all i know from this is it has the smaller 350 with 190 horses because the 5th digit is a J. Is their any other info i can get from the #. and is this still worth 3k? thanks
 

Jack

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Joined
Dec 27, 2000
Messages
1,825
Location
Florence, SC (Timmonsville SC)
Corvette
71 War Bonnet Yellow VERT 71 BH Blue CPE (SOLD)
If chassis, windshield frame/pillars and birdcage are rust-free and not bent and car is mostly all there ... yes on $3K ... but it still ain't a steal at that.

For what it's worth, I really don't recommend any automotive resto project for a full-time student ... not for newlyweds or recent parolees or recent military inductees either.
 
T

tx73vette

Guest
Hey prolax here is the breakdown on the vin #

1. first digit 1=Chevrolet
2. second digit Z= Corvette
3. third & fourth digit 37= 2 door coupe
67=convertible
4. fifth digit engine codde
L48= J
L82= T
LS4= Z
5. sixth digit 3= 1973
6. seventh digit S= St Louis Mo.
7. Last digits Represent production numbers (starting number was 400001/up


Look at this web site it is dedicated to the &3 Vette just click on the link

http://temp.corvetteforum.net/c3/vette73/


Hope that this helps you and keep us posted okay?
 
G

GaryS

Guest
Like others have said, this is going to be a real challenge. IF (big qualifier here) you have a garage, the time to work on it, the money to work on it, the know-how to do MAJOR fiberglass repair, interior work, paint, suspension, engine, transmission, etc, etc, and the frame and birdcage are good then I would go for. Of course, I am cheap and would offer no more than $2000. I like working on cars and could bring this car back and I have all of skills, time and money to do it. On the other hand, I agree with the others and would put the money into a better car. I would rather repair/restore than start with a basket case like this.

Just my opinion.
Gary
 

69MyWay

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Joined
Jul 3, 2001
Messages
4,364
Location
Auburndale, Florida
Corvette
1969 Killer Shark
It looks like a fun project. You need to make 100% the frame right in front of the rear tires along the outside edge is not rotted away. If not, you have some decent stuff to work with there.

If you do all the work yourself and intend on having a quality car when done, expect to set aside about $21K extra. That might sound shocking, but it adds up fast. Example:

$3,000 Paint/body supplies/chemicals/misc parts
$3,000 Interior - carpet/gauges/seats/dash/panels/trim
$1,000 Misc wiring
$5,000 engine rebuild/radiator/hoses/fuel lines/belts/accessories
$3,000 Suspension trailing arms/bushings/steering/springs/alignment/brakes
$2,500 nice wheels tires
$2,500 weatherstrips/trim/misc small body parts/locks/handles, etc.
$1,000 misc/radio/wires/clamps/fluids/tools/trips to and from....

If you are going to pay for the work to be done....you better get a second mortgage on your house and quick while the rates are still low!

I love projects like this, but all to often I see people that start with good intentions then turn an otherwise buildable car into a pile of scrap parts.

Good luck with your decision.
 
K

Kritter

Guest
Ah heck, from the pictures that isn't bad. You can make it a real nice daily driver. Believe me I took a basket case 73 I got with buckets of parts and now it is sweet. Not numbers matching but still really fun, afforded me the ability to put a 700R4 overdrive tranny in. I think the numbers in the post above are really high, I have $7500 total in mine including body work and paint that I did myself. Now it took me the better part of 5 years to do but it is a hobby. Some things that you HAVE TO FIX - go, stop, steer, and no fires. Brakes Calapers, Master Cylendar, fuel tank wash/coating, then make her look respectable. Fiberglass work is much easier than metal reworking, not real expensive either, and doesn't take a whole lot of special tools. As stated in other posts, you'll have to have a place to store/work on it for a long time if your $$ challenged.

Good luck, oh PS I paid $2K for mine.
 
Joined
Apr 29, 2001
Messages
2,141
Location
Rio Rancho, NM
Corvette
1981 HD Suspension; ZN1 Option
I think that Bossvette has a point. This "project" requires some motivation behind it, and making it a father-and-son project has great advantages:

...1973 Project Vette...$3,000 Dollars

...sharing only part of the initial cost....$1,500 Dollars

...value of a restored 73 Vette $22,000 Dollars

...completing the project along a loved-one...PRICELESS

What a 1973 Vette is worth is in the eye of the beholder. Having the unique experience and opportunity to share it with your Dad, cannot be priced! It won't matter if it takes 2, 4, or 6 years to complete. You both can look into the past and be happy to share this experience.

Call it Family Therapy! Plenty of people spend fortunes in psychology treatment when all it would take is to open new communications channels with one's father or mother or sibling.

I agree with Jack as well. Luckily, a Dad/Son project is not in his list of "don't".;)

GerryLP:cool
 

bossvette

Gone but not forgotten
Joined
May 19, 2003
Messages
3,233
Location
West Unity Ohio
Corvette
1968 1997
...completing the project along a loved-one...PRICELESS

What a 1973 Vette is worth is in the eye of the beholder. Having the unique experience and opportunity to share it with your Dad, cannot be priced!

GerryLP:cool

:upthumbs thats the truth, I would give anything if I could get my kids off the computer and out to the garage. :eyerole

the 73 is a one year car and its value will increase as the other so called "more desireable" years go up in value

but the time spent together working on a project is the key.
 

The73vetteman

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 13, 2003
Messages
339
Location
Michigan
Corvette
'73 L48 4spd
1. always buy the best vette you can afford, and

2. don't expect it to be an investment.

That said, I think the values of '73s are rising, tho nothing like the '68-72 cars, and if you take your time and do the job properly in 5 years you could have a $20k car. If you have to pay others to do the work for you it's going to cost more than $20k, but if you're resourceful and handy with tools you may get away with less. I think the biggest single item is paint - guys here talk about a reasonable paint job costing $5k - which is why I'm thinking of taking auto paint classes at my local community college.

Good luck!

J
 

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