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Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 1,837
The price quoted is a large multiple of the current value of the truck.
The end product will be 10 X harder to sell at all than it is now or restore, the number of people who want it is much smaller.
I agree, the only hope of getting your money back on a sale is DIY.
The biggest loss: run out of money, or change your mind mid-stream.
Is that truck the one you really want?

Some of the most successful con artists seemed like really nice guys at the time.

The IRS is a giant headache to install and adjust many times, and has minimal effect on ride quality for the price.

Joined: Nov 2020
Posts: 342
I've only been in this field for a year , but based on what I've learned I do not think that budget is unrealistic.
You stated that the finished truck could "easily" be sold for a price that would recover your expenses. That is not realistic. Forget about getting your money back - just decide if you want that build.
You are clearly apprehensive about the situation. I think that you should give serious consideration to alternative courses of action. Maybe you want to drive your patina special as is. If is is still original , it would be easy to sell ... take the proceeds and couple it with 2/3 of that build budget and buy a resto-mod that is street ready. Let someone else take a bath.

You stated that you were "shocked" at the proposed price , and that you felt it to be "outrageous". You clearly don't want to work with that guy - you don't trust him. (Through no fault of his , I might add...)
Formulate and follow Plan B.

Last edited by Waveski; Sun Sep 05 2021 01:29 AM.

Age 68 is not too late to start hot rodding , right?
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 9,216
Sir Searchalot
Chuck does like and trust the shop. It's just sticker shock and asking for some plane B"s. I think we are repeating plan B's.

Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 10,377
Look for another truck which is already done the way that you want it. You should be able to find one for less than $30,000 with a most of the way decent paint job.
Keep your old truck as a putting around, daily driver.
Who in their right mind only has one of these trucks?! smile

Joined: Nov 2020
Posts: 342
Originally Posted by 52Carl
Who in their right mind only has one of these trucks?! smile

Who in their right mind HAS one of these trucks!!??? (Insert smiley face emoji here if I used emojis , which I don't.)

Age 68 is not too late to start hot rodding , right?
Joined: Apr 2020
Posts: 183
Professional procrastinator
All good valid points. As a lifelong self employed business owner the only red flag that has not been specifically identified is one of the first that struck me. If the shop specializes in this era trucks they should know them inside and out. There are not many differences or surprises in what needs to be done. It should all be work they have done before. I would think that after an hour discussion you would have had the ballpark estimate before leaving the shop with a more detailed written estimate via email within a couple days after specific parts prices are checked. That estimate should have an expiration date and should include a proposed timeframe for the work to be done. A couple weeks to get the estimate that should be a no brainer? I am thinking the time management skills of this shop/owner are questionable. That speaks to the delays and way longer time period that people have talked about. Maybe you can research on yelp about this shop, plug the shop name into websearch and see if any reviews pop up. Asking the shop for references will only get you names of their most satisfied customers. My .02, find one done that you like as you will likely be frustrated at the delays and lame excuses that follow.

Last edited by Twin Jimmys; Sat Sep 04 2021 02:31 PM.

1947.2 GMC 1/2T panel
1947.2 GMC 1/2T long bed
1948 GMC 1/2T pick-up

Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 25,647
Kettle Custodian (pot stirrer)
A lot of the consulting work I do is performinfg pre-purchase inspections of astronomically-priced resto-mod vehicles for overseas buyers. Even when the asking price is two or three times the quote you've been given, I'm amazed at the generally poor quality of the work that's been done by a "professional" hot rod shop. Some of them look good, but the modifications that have been done are downright dangerous for anything other than a car show trailer queen. I looked at an early 1950's Chevy 3100 with the full custom treatment- - -crate engine, OD automatic transmission, independent front suspension, 4-link rear suspension, full custom interior and electronic gauge cluster, and a custom steering column. The asking price was $90K to a potential buyer in France. I found a bad engine oil leak caused by the fuel pump hitting the front crossmember and cracking the pump housing, and a steering system that tried to lock up every 1/2 turn of the steering wheel due to universal joints getting into a bind. I documented the problems in my report, and I don't know if the sale happened or not. I got paid very well to drive 200 miles to do the inspection and file a report, so what happened after that is none of my business.

I'd suggest you find a resto-mod truck that somebody else has taken the financial hit on, and offer him a little of his money back. There's plenty of them out there!

"It is better to be silent and be thought a fool than to speak and eliminate all doubt!"
Abraham Lincoln

Cringe and wail in fear, Eloi- - - - -we Morlocks are on the hunt!

There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.
Ernest Hemingway

Love your enemies and drive 'em nuts!
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 3,196
I wouldn't do it, Chuck. Based on what I've seen, you're standing on the edge of a deep money pit. Like Carl said, I would look for one somebody else has done and buy it if you think that's what you really want. I believe with whatever you have tied up in your truck already plus $30,000 (which will turn into 35,000, then 40,000 then who knows what) plus all the other stuff you'll have to pay for, you'll wind up exactly like a fellow I know. He started out thinking what he wanted would cost around $18 to $20,000, but before it was over, he had shot $60,000+ right down the drain. He ended up with a mismatched bunch of used and poorly rebuilt junk scavenged from who knows where that shakes and rattles like an old buckboard at any speed over 40. I doubt he could get $15,000 for it and he's convinced he'll have to part it out to sell it. If somebody like Jerry saw it, they'd tell the buyer to run fast and far. Looks good when it is parked, though. Good luck!


1952 1/2 ton with 1959 235
T5 with 3.07 rear end
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,763
Well, I’ve read each and every one of the replies. Some of you said the $30K estimate was in the ball park. MiraclePieCo and JoeH said it was cheap and to jump on it before the shop changed it’s mind. A couple of you should be counselors because you figured me out real good and saw that I am apprehensive about this build. Twin Jimmy’s said some things about the shop that I had thought but had suppressed, like not having good time management skills which would result in build delays. But it was Bartamos, Jerry, Panic, Waveski, 52Carl and Jon G who influenced me the most. They all told me, in so many words, to not do the build and to come up with a “Plan B”. Jerry, I’ve decided not to buy that gallon of Vaseline, and to start looking for a truck that’s already built and on the road. It just makes sense, and will assure me that I won’t spend more than I should on something that’s really only intended to be a toy played with on the weekends. Bartamos laid it out real logically and everything he said makes sense, so I’ve decided to take the majority’s advice. I’m going with Plan B.

Thanks everyone so much for the comments and for being honest with me. I’m going to sleep better tonight!

1950 Chevy 1/2 ton (all original)
1951 Chevy 1/2 ton (future streetrod)
1941 Chevy coupe
1938 Chevy coupe streetrod
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 1,837
jump on it before the shop changed it’s mind

They don't have to. The estimate is not binding.

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