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Thread: 77 Aspen wagon

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    Aspen and Volare Junior Member slantasaurus's Avatar
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    77 Aspen wagon

    Yesterday I finally had some time to work on the Aspen. By the time I finished (or gave up depending on how you look at it...) I was wondering if I should just cut my losses and sell it or keep moving on with the project.

    A little background, when I bought the wagon last month I noticed a few things weren't quite the way they should be. The passenger side of the bench seat was bolted in place of the drivers seat and the drivers seat was just loose in the car. OK, kind of weird but I guess they wanted the passenger seat to drive on because the vinyl wasn't splitting and stuff...I'll just swap them back the way they should be. Then I noticed that there were no seat tracks for the passenger seat...and somewhere in the process of switching the seats out the previous owner also removed the passenger side seat belt and buckle. WTF ?? Maybe he was planning to demo derby this wagon ?? Anyway, a few weeks ago I went to the local pick-n-pull junkyard and find an 88 Dippy SE (wow, I don't even remember seeing these when they were new, thought they were all stripper Taxi and Cop cars...) grabbed the passenger side seat track from the Dippy and went home. The outboard seat track drops in place just fine, the inboard track is WAY off. Then I notice there is a bracket riveted to the track and thought, "oh, that bracket needs to be turned around 180* and it should work fine". Well, its closer but still not right. The front hole is still a couple inches inward. So basically I was ready to give up...But while I was doing the seat swap I ran into my worst nightmare. The drivers side rear floorpan is gone, not just swiss cheese, its basically a little bit of rust clinging to the carpet pretending to still be part of the car. The passenger side floorpan has a few holes but isn't nearly as bad. While I was under the car I also noticed the trans looked very wet, so it looks like at least a pan gasket is in order...might as well replace the filter if I have to open it up.

    When I bought the car I was just figuring on going through the brakes (right front caliper sticks), rebuild the carb, and drive it. Now its looking like exactly the kind of project I really don't need. If I was going to go through a whole rebuild I would rather have another A body. Then again, I've always wanted a wagon (did I mention my name is Wagonrod ???) The rest of the car is very solid and just needs a repaint to look great. The floorpans really caught me off guard, I guess that's from being stored outside all its life and the weather stripping drying out in the FL sun and heat.

    Now the dilemma, should I try to find floorpan from another car or just get some sheetmetal and repair it the best I can? I'd rather do it right but I know nobody makes replacement parts for F bodies like they do A,B, and E bodies. Should I just cut my loses and wait another year until I can find an A body? I really like the wagon but I'm not sure my heart is in it as deep as the project is going to go to get it where I really want it to be. Anybody in FL with a really, really cheap 4 door car or wagon I could part out to build mine ?

    Just looking for some encouragement...

  2. #2
    Aspen and Volare Administrator White Aspen R/T's Avatar
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    Score some floor pans from F-body Jim in Arizona.
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    Aspen and Volare Super Member 76sassygrassVolare's Avatar
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    its always disappointing when something is in way worse shape than you thought. If your sure its just the floor pan rotten and everything else is fairly clean , like the front frame rails, then it may be worth forging on and repairing them. I understand not wanting to get into a big project you thought was a quick fix, and you gotta draw the line somewhere, but if just the floor pans I say carry on and stay positive

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    Aspen and Volare Junior Member slantasaurus's Avatar
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    The floorpan thing kind of caught me off guard, I just wasn't expecting it. The frame rails and everything else about the car is so clean I didn't even think about it until I was under the car. Being from Chicago I'm used to seeing rusty cars, F bodies are pretty much extinct up there.

    The other thing that surprised me was when I went to get an insurance quote. I was thinking the Aspen would be a cheap way to have a second car around and have some fun with. It's going to cost me $40 a month more than my 08 PT Crusier. I have full coverage on the PT and the quote I got for the Aspen was just basic. I never paid those kind of prices with my 74 Duster, of course its been several years since I had the Duster on the road and I'm in FL now instead of Chicago.

    I'll press on with the Aspen even though I know I'll never get out what I will put into the car, even if I tried to sell it now without investing anything. Well, I might be able to if I dropped in a 440 and sold it quick before it blew up the 7 1/4 rearend....LOL

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    Aspen and Volare Administrator White Aspen R/T's Avatar
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    Aspen and Volare Super Member 76sassygrassVolare's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slantasaurus View Post
    The floorpan thing kind of caught me off guard, I just wasn't expecting it. The frame rails and everything else about the car is so clean I didn't even think about it until I was under the car. Being from Chicago I'm used to seeing rusty cars, F bodies are pretty much extinct up there.

    The other thing that surprised me was when I went to get an insurance quote. I was thinking the Aspen would be a cheap way to have a second car around and have some fun with. It's going to cost me $40 a month more than my 08 PT Crusier. I have full coverage on the PT and the quote I got for the Aspen was just basic. I never paid those kind of prices with my 74 Duster, of course its been several years since I had the Duster on the road and I'm in FL now instead of Chicago.

    I'll press on with the Aspen even though I know I'll never get out what I will put into the car, even if I tried to sell it now without investing anything. Well, I might be able to if I dropped in a 440 and sold it quick before it blew up the 7 1/4 rearend....LOL
    Could get a quote from Hagerty Insurance , if your just using it as a cruiser they may be able to give you a better quote? You can get out of the car what you put into it if you consider the enjoyment you may get out of it. May sound cheesy but I believe there is a value in what you get out of the car personally, so what if it isn't worth what you spent on it if you re sell it, gotta be a value in enjoying it!

  7. #7
    Aspen and Volare Senior Member 7T8 Custom's Avatar
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    totally agree. Cant put a price on the enjoyment factor.

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