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Projects Seeking advice on my first classic car purchase

Discussion in 'Traditional Customs' started by Qes, Mar 5, 2018.

  1. mercman@bulldog
    Joined: Mar 16, 2009
    Posts: 565

    mercman@bulldog
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    It was blue/w/flames when I purchased it in 2001, I late 2013 it was completely torn apart, all paint was stripped and all modifications redone. The cherry red picture is it today. Skirts are on it yet. Traditional is what is spoken here. Not trying to be rude, but,any diesel motor is not what this is about. It won’t be what is considered traditional. This message board is about enthusiastic pursuit of our hobby, and is serious but fun. Don’t be afraid to take a chance, it takes youngblood’s to keep this flame burning. Welcome to Kustomland


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  2. Qes
    Joined: Mar 5, 2018
    Posts: 26

    Qes
    Member

    Hey,
    Hahaha, it's a facebook

    Hello mercman@bulldog,
    You have a beautiful Mercury for sure!
    Not rude, at all, I just didn't know the spirit of the forums. x38 sent me to the rules/guide lines I missed :)

    Cheers :)
     
  3. David Gersic
    Joined: Feb 15, 2015
    Posts: 1,549

    David Gersic
    Member
    from DeKalb, IL

    So I’m thinking don’t buy anything just yet. Is there a local cruise night or car show scene you can get to? You need to make some new friends and start getting a feel for old cars. They’re nothing like a Grand Caravan.

    Don’t worry about power steering, don’t need it. A correctly set up manual isn’t hard to steer.

    For now, don’t think about engine swaps either, traditional or otherwise. You change the engine, you have to make the new one fit. Then rework the cooling system. Then wiring. Then the trans has to go, which means you’re changing the rear end, or adapting a trans to a closed driveshaft. And then you’re inside, working out how to piece together a shifter linkage. You’re not ready for that, and it doesn’t sound like you have the deep pockets to write checks and get results.




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  4. Squablow
    Joined: Apr 26, 2005
    Posts: 13,348

    Squablow
    Member

    While I agree with everything else you mention here, the Mercury already has an open driveshaft. 49-50 use an oddball Dana unit, '51 has a more standard Dana 44 style rearend.
     
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  5. wicarnut
    Joined: Oct 29, 2009
    Posts: 2,141

    wicarnut
    Member

    My advice would be, take your time, go to shows/cruises, do research on custom Mercury's , internet search for books, pictures, check out Mercury threads here and other sites. Once you determine what you think you like, shop various internet sites, currently 150 + for sale. I gather you are a young man not from a car family or experienced car friends for some guidance, that being said, IMO do not buy any form of a project, (projects take space, tools, skills and time) purchase a running driving car, the best car that your budget allows. Time is on your side, The Hot Rod/Custom car market is flooded now and will continue as us baby boomers age out, deals are to be had. Another piece of free advice I give any young man, finish school, get yourself in a trade, educated professional of some kind, life gets easier when you make $$$ so you can afford the extras like the car hobby.
     
  6. Qes
    Joined: Mar 5, 2018
    Posts: 26

    Qes
    Member

    Thank David Gersic, You know, you are probably right. We have car shows around Ontario.
    Some at our CanadianTire locations. There is one that is starting in May and happen every Saturday, I do plan to go, so I will look out for old Mercury's and their owners.
    If I get the green one near me for (asking) 9500, I would be able to afford 100 hours of labour at a reasonable shop rate and a reasonably priced motor (with some money left for unknown hiccups).




    Thanks wicarnut, I will definitely keep researching and learning.
    Yes, you are absolutely correct haha, my family isn't really into cars.
    Gotcha, getting a running example, it's good advice, thank you :)
    Oh, you are very perceptive, the few people I've connected with on Mercury's who are selling, are definitely senior citizens, thanks it's good news for the younger people who want to get into the hobby/lifestyle/self-expression. Thanks for the advice, I just turned 34 today (March 7th), I have a undergraduate degree in Fine Arts (Photography). Have some startup (pre-business) ideas that I want to work on, but I would love to own a Mercury to drive around in this upcoming summer (need some happiness in my life haha)

     
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  7. David Gersic
    Joined: Feb 15, 2015
    Posts: 1,549

    David Gersic
    Member
    from DeKalb, IL

    Don’t limit yourself to Mercuries. Go meet people in the car hobby. A guy building a deuce roadster, a shoebox, or a muscle car is still just a guy working on old cars. The details change a bit, but the tools and techniques don’t. And what he doesn’t know, or do, he generally has a buddy that knows a guy that does.

    Shows are good places to meet people. Get some flyers for other shows. I like driving events more than static shows, but having some of each on the calendar is good.

    Too bad you’re not local here. I’d introduce you to a few guys. I’m hoping to get back on the road soon, now that the snow is letting up and the air no longer hurts to breath.



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  8. KustomKreeps
    Joined: Jan 7, 2016
    Posts: 301

    KustomKreeps
    Member

    Good on ya for going four door. Im a fan of more-door late 40s to early 60s cars. mids 60s to mid 70s i personally prefer coupes.

    As David Gersic said dont limit to Mercs. Sure they are cool and I haved loved them from the first time I saw "Grease" as a kid then "Gone in 60 seconds" but really they look way better with a chop and a four door can be a huge expense and can be hard to get right.
    Have you looked at 48-53 Hudsons? Cheaper than a Merc and look chopped right from the factory. I personally think the four door step down hudsons are some of the best looking more doors stock. And you will have something a little bit different with racing pedigree. yes i have one so im a tad biased.

    What ever you get best of luck. Save up. Even once you get it you will want a few grand just to play, drive it, get to know it and fix those little issues you had not thought of. Basic electrics, rubbers etc still add up fast.
     
  9. David Gersic
    Joined: Feb 15, 2015
    Posts: 1,549

    David Gersic
    Member
    from DeKalb, IL

    A friend cruises with his family in this cool Hudson four door.

    [​IMG]

    As with all cars, it’s a work in progress, but he’s having fun with it.



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  10. level2526
    Joined: Feb 14, 2009
    Posts: 35

    level2526
    Member

    The good news is four door cars are easier to find and to afford. I bought one about a year ago. They are susceptible to rust issues in the rockers. Do yourself a favor when you do look at one. Get under it and inspect it real good. If you can get it on a lift to do inspection. I'm dealing with replacing inner and outer rockers and it's not fun and it's expensive. Good luck.


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  11. LS engine swaps are pretty much uncharted territory in most old cars. You have to be up on your fab skills and electrics if you want to go with fuel injection, etc.
     
  12. goldmountain
    Joined: Jun 12, 2016
    Posts: 452

    goldmountain

    Kevin, I am 5' 4" also. My '47 Plymouth is chopped about 4" and visibility has never been a problem. However, my mom who was a lot shorter, felt clostrophobic because all she saw at eye level was dashboard!

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  13. goldmountain
    Joined: Jun 12, 2016
    Posts: 452

    goldmountain

    Just remembered. The Barris brothers and Bill Hines were short guys. We fit where those overgrown gorillas don't.
     
  14. Have fun, you are about to enter the best hobby in the world. Get yourself a set of tools and add to it as you go. Canuck Tire has wrenches etc on sale all the time. Princess Auto also has affordable tools for the beginner.Paying someone to do routine maintenance gets old really quick. You can learn to weld and do bodywork , even Painting is within reach as you learn more skills.Keep posting, there is a great resource on this board...the people.
     
  15. atomickustom
    Joined: Aug 30, 2005
    Posts: 3,126

    atomickustom
    Member

    A lot of genuinely good advice here!
    The most important points are the ones that keep getting repeated: take your time and get what you really want, buy cautiously and carefully, and get a car that is fully functional.

    It can be hard to be patient. Lord knows more than once I ended up buying something different than what I set out to find, and as others have stated it never works out because it wasn't what I really wanted. On the other hand, sometimes you just see a car and fall in love. Going to car shows is a great way to see a lot of cars and meet some car people, but not a great place to buy. Almost all cars for sale at car shows are overpriced. The best deals are always from local ads or word-of-mouth or something you happen to drive past on your way somewhere.

    My mother was 5'3" and she had no problem driving my 100% stock original 1954 Pontiac 4-door. The original seats in these old cars sit pretty high and upright. You should be fine, but sit in someone's Mercury if you can just to make sure. Once the front seat has been changed everything is totally different.
     
  16. Qes
    Joined: Mar 5, 2018
    Posts: 26

    Qes
    Member

    Hey Everyone,

    Sorry, I have been awol, I just think I need to save up more money or wait until I have a very well paying job! But if I see a deal, it would be hard to stop me from purchasing :)

    Thank everyone who messaged/replied!
    Hope everyone is having a great Spring Season!

    Cheers,
    Kevin H.
     
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