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Projects Careful what you buy...

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Tom Noller, Nov 28, 2015.

  1. Tom Noller
    Joined: Nov 14, 2015
    Posts: 55

    Tom Noller
    from Iowa

    A few years back I bought an older BW T-5 five speed and bell housing thru an online ad. Paid the guy about $700 for what he said was a tranny that needed nothing. I had a project in mind and hoped to use it fairly soon. The project went on a back burner and we eventually moved east.
    I took the T-5 to a good local shop and they had a look inside to find stripped gears and worn parts that would need replacing. Also the bell housing was from a Chevy truck, although the guy had said it came from a Camero. I'm embarrassed to say how much I've spent on that "deal" since, but I suppose I do have the satisfaction in knowing it's fine now and good for years.
    Hard to know what's good & bad when we buy like that. The tranny turned okay and shifted smoothly on the garage floor back then, but of course it wasn't supplying power to wheels under a load.
    Have you had a similar situation you're willing to, uh, confess?
    Model T1 likes this.
  2. indyjps
    Joined: Feb 21, 2007
    Posts: 3,576


    I pulled the running sbc from my daily driver, no issues, just swapped in a bigger better sbc.
    Sold the heads, the guy had disassembled them, magnafluxed and they were cracked, not really believing it, since they were driving a week before, I told him to bring everything back. Same heads, I had gasket matched them and recognized the grinding work. I gave him his money back. Sometimes shit happens.

    Bought a car with some master sculptor mud work, that cost a lot.
  3. In your profile you neglected to fill in your location but why would you buy a 5 speed on line when they are readily available in most locals.

    As far as getting burnt on a purchase I suspect most of us have bought a pig in the poke at one time or another,you just lick your wounds and move forward. HRP
  4. weps
    Joined: Aug 1, 2008
    Posts: 504

    from auburn,IN

    we had a spot at a swap meet years ago. A buddy had a trashed M22. Good case, and still good for "Parts". He had a sign on it that said "For parts only" and maybe 50$ price tag (Back when these were more common;)) pretty much as soon as we unloaded, some guy wants it, and its gone.Cool, less junk to take home. Another friend is walking thru the show and spots the same trans at another booth, for parts, 200$ well, we must have sold it too cheap, whatever.
    By the end of the day, the trans had traded hands at least 4 times, and was a "good running transmission" 450$o_O
    slack, Fixxxr, falcongeorge and 5 others like this.
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  5. indyjps
    Joined: Feb 21, 2007
    Posts: 3,576


    Unless I can drive the car the trans came from, I just consider any used trans a core that needs built.
    Travis T, jazz1, kiwijeff and 5 others like this.
  6. slowmotion
    Joined: Nov 21, 2011
    Posts: 3,050


    Used parts, calculated risk. If it's a flat out lie, or misrepresented, that's where it gets dycey. It's also where do your homework & check it twice comes in. Sometimes ya get just plane screwed.
    One of my sons just recently took it up the ass on a used welder. Didn't do his homework, no recourse.
  7. Inked Monkey
    Joined: Apr 19, 2011
    Posts: 1,594

    Inked Monkey

    What's the difference between a Chevy truck and a Camaro bell housing?
  8. I'm afraid in the world we live in today there are many who do not prescribe to honesty is the best policy and selling their wares on line they can claim the product is perfect when the don't know or care as long as they make a sale.

    They also know that a product sold on line is extremely hard for the buyer to seek restitution. HRP
    racemad55 and thirtytwo like this.
  9. when i buy a used motor/transmission/rear end i never listen to what the seller is saying and assume they are just cores for rebuilding...and pay accordingly

    never buy a used carburetor

    i wonder , if they are in such good condition why did they take them out?
    ace5043 likes this.
  10. prpmmp
    Joined: Dec 12, 2011
    Posts: 990


    I believe the Camaro bellhousing has the Ford t-5 pattern, and puts the trans at a angle. Pete
    choptop40 likes this.
  11. Kinky6
    Joined: May 11, 2003
    Posts: 1,765


    The '80's IROC Camaros had a bell that was twisted, or laid over about 17-20 degrees towards the drivers side. Reduced the hang down on the tail shaft, gave it more ground clearance. I've got one if anyone's looking. K6

    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
  12. Used standard transmissions have to go cheap for me to buy them. I bought an M20 here a year back, based on photos and it looked okay. Got the side cover off at home.. it was quite okay inside and about $200 less than the going price.
  13. The Hamb classifieds are not immune to deals gone bad but I believe 99% of the sellers are stand up guys,that's not the case on the on line sale sites. HRP
    warbird1 and da34guy like this.
  14. vtx1800
    Joined: Oct 4, 2009
    Posts: 844


    I had a SBC 400 Block that I spent quite a bit of time cleaning up to take to the swap meet, sold it, the guy set it down and looked (much closer than I had) and found a crack in the side of the block, no idea how I missed it. I gave him his money back and still feel bad for selling a bad block, even though I didn't know it and gave the money back:( On the same note I've bought tires and a garage door opener and got screwed on both of 'em.
  15. Why buy used tires, ya can see they are no good, and why is a guy sellin a used garage door opener? Cause it ain't no good.
  16. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 43,456


    It's easy to get ripped off on stuff that's "magic" like transmissions, bodywork, electric stuff, etc. Many guys won't take the effort to learn about this stuff. But once you learn how to do the work yourself, it's not magic any more.
  17. Mike51Merc
    Joined: Dec 5, 2008
    Posts: 3,786


    A lot of the time the seller doesn't even know what their selling because they got it used in the first place. A good friend of mine always says "Inspect what you Expect".
    slack and vtx1800 like this.
  18. vtx1800
    Joined: Oct 4, 2009
    Posts: 844


    Actually it was supposedly new in the box, I didn't inspect it close enough, found that it had been dropped on the corner, eventually I got the board that was damaged and it works great today. I've purchased several other used ones and they are all still working. I'll not buy any more tires though.
  19. 29moonshine
    Joined: Dec 30, 2006
    Posts: 1,280


    i bought a motor [ that ran good when pulled] and was freshen up and painted.$1200 later it ran good. a friend called it a krylon rebuild. now anything with moving parts is a core
  20. porknbeaner
    Joined: Sep 12, 2003
    Posts: 41,063


    Anything I buy I expect that it will need to be rebuilt and purchase accordingly. Then if it doesn't need to be rebuilt I am happy as a duck. :D
    slack and kiwijeff like this.
  21. G-son
    Joined: Dec 19, 2012
    Posts: 560

    from Sweden

    Never been "attached to another object by an inclined plane, wrapped helically around an axis" (screwed, that is) when it comes to car parts, but I've bought other stuff that didn't match the description.
    Nowadays I go by what I can see myself, not what the seller says - talking to them serves the purpose of getting friendly to make the best possible deal, and to analyze if they know enough to lie convincingly or if they simply don't know enough about what they're selling to know how bad shape it's in.
  22. 57JoeFoMoPar
    Joined: Sep 14, 2004
    Posts: 4,268


    Used parts are a complete crap shoot in my opinion, and even sometimes when they come from a supposedly reputable shop. Unless my hands are in it, or it comes from a source I am very familiar with, it's just a calculated risk.
    I've had both good and bad luck myself.

    I bought a $200 305 that came out of an older 85 Chevy station wagon. We drove the wagon around, it started easy and ran smooth with good oil pressure, and we pulled it into the shop under it's own power and pulled the engine. I immediately installed that engine in my 67 C/10, and it seized to a grinding halt in about 50 miles of highway driving.

    On the other hand, I took a free 302 Ford that was sitting under a welding bench, cleaned all of the metal debris out of it, installed it in a 63 Fairlane, and that engine proceeded to run for years of daily driving of 600 miles a week.

    You win some and lose some.
  23. 49ratfink
    Joined: Feb 8, 2004
    Posts: 17,332

    from California

    I bought some tires at a swap meet that looked good until I had my buddy mount them and they had a shitload of ice pick looking holes in the sidewalls.... got a good price on them though:(
  24. luckythirteenagogo
    Joined: Dec 28, 2012
    Posts: 1,240

    from Apex, NC

    Not too long ago I was on the other end of the stick. I was selling an OT stereo receiver and speakers. They were old, but still worked and I was pretty much giving them away. So a guy comes over, checks them out and listens to them while he tells me he knows everything there is to know about sound equipment. He was happy with them and bought them. The next day he sent me a message telling me I ripped him off because nothing worked. I will not sell something as something it's not, and everything worked fine the night before! I told him to bring it all back and I'd refund his $30! He told me he was too pissed about it and it wasn't worth coming back for.
  25. Hackerbilt
    Joined: Aug 13, 2001
    Posts: 6,230


    Years ago I sold my uncle my 1981 Eagle SX4 AWD of my favorite "regular" cars of all time.
    We lived next door to each other so he left it in my yard for the summer and when he took it to use in the fall the torque converter was cracked and spilling fluid everywhere!
    From when I parked it to when he picked it up two/three months later...converter somehow history!
    I paid for the new converter and he and his son put it in that weekend. (I was building my new house at the time.)
    Man...did I feel bad but I'm really glad it wasn't a stranger!!!
    He knew I would never rip him off, but it was certainly a nasty coincidence how it all happened the way it did!
  26. On the flip side, I bought an old 250ci motor and auto trans out of a falcon that had been sitting for 15 years. Dropped it straight into my '63 falcon after bolting on a new water pump, changed the oil and threaded in some new plugs.....4 years later and it hasn't missed a beat, although I did swap out the trans (it started slipping)......for a free one.
    Hackerbilt likes this.
  27. I did buy used tires once, looked newer, no cracks, DOT was about 9 years old, but all 4 had bad flat spots and after a month of driving I couldn't take the vibration anymore. Lucky I'm cheap and only spent the price of 1 new tire for all 4. On the other side I bought a 327 for $50 and when I got home, took off the valve covers and it had roller tip rockers, screw in studs with pushrod guides all on stock style world product heads.
  28. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 16,176


    A truck bellhousing has a registration center bore of 5-1/8". A car bellhousing has a registration center bore of 4-11/16". Several companies make a spacer ring.

    A Camaro bellhousing, from the mid-late 80's has about a 15º tilt to the mounting pattern.
  29. bchctybob
    Joined: Sep 18, 2011
    Posts: 1,630


    I bought a running 401 Buick with a B&M Hydro from a friend of a friend. He had already pulled it when I got there to pick it up. (1st clue) Back at my shop I started it up in the back of my truck and it had a nasty noise like something was hitting the pan - damn. So I hoisted it up and pulled the pan. The factory pan baffle had come loose on one side and had sprung up to hit the counterweights. I thought, "oh good, I'll weld it back, re-install the pan and try it again. No more noise until I shut it off - then it squeaked. Squeaked! WTF? So I split the engine/trans and put it on a stand to investigate - two spun main bearings. The crank was junk. Upon further inspection, the cam was flat as well.
    Like some of the others, I'm not big on buying used engines, trans, or 3rd members these days - they are basically cores.
  30. choptop40
    Joined: Dec 23, 2009
    Posts: 3,432


    Bought a 89 suburban with gm replacement 350 with 20.000 miles , drove it home , parted it out and got a darn nice motor...I only buy em running....funny though I've sold a bunch not running....I'm honest so never a problem....

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