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Author Topic: Advice please  (Read 513 times)
Jack
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« on: September 01, 2022, 09:43:31 PM »
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G'day everyone, I am new to the club and keen to purchase an FC. Just wanted to get some thoughts from those who have done it all before. 

Essentially I want to end up with a custom FC to drive about once a week. It needs to present well but I don't intend to show it.

From my research so far, it looks like I can spend $45-$50k to get one that is complete or buy something that needs work for $20k - $30k.

I have a pretty clear idea about colours, so either I need to buy it already painted in colours I like (red/blue and white), or have it resprayed. I am pretty sure I would like to have front disc brakes and a red or grey motor with mild cam, extractors and an upgraded carbi. I don't have the time to be tuning the car regularly, so a simple set up that will be reliable is needed. I am leaning towards a 5 speed gearbox.

With three teenagers at home I won't have time to do huge amounts of work on it, so I am pretty sure I need to buy something without too many rust problems. I would enjoy customising the interior with a console etc. 

I am going to struggle to come up with $45k now, so I can either wait a while or buy something cheaper and make the above changes over time, but I don't have any idea how much money or hassle is involved in the the changes I have laid out above. Any advice on the cost and dramas associated with engine upgrades, gearbox changes, new paint and interiors would be much appreciated.

Thank you,

Jack 



 
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mcl1959
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« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2022, 07:17:10 PM »
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Wow, where to start is always a difficult problem.
Firstly, buying something already modified can be a problem if is has no engineering. I would steer away from this unless the seller can provide a report.
Disc brake front end and red motor are a tried and true combination. There have been thousands built over the years and the formula is straight forward as long as you keep up to date with requirements.
Manual is harder to do than auto because of clutch master cylinder issues, but solutions are out there.
Personally I think you would be better with an auto. Iíve built an FC with a Celica 5 speed and an FE with a Trimatic.
Definitely donít buy a car that you want to change the colour of. Getting a car resprayed now is not for those on a tight budget.
I would be looking to buy the best body you can find unless you are a panel beater / spray painter who can do most of the work yourself.
Have you driven a stock FC?   They are not that bad to drive and a lot of fun can be had without being modified. Outings with car clubs offer support with possible break downs and problem solving.
So recommendation.    Buy a stock car in a colour you like. Make sure engine is in good order and give it a go before deciding to go down the modified route.

Ken
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Errol62
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« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2022, 08:46:32 PM »
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Sound adviceÖ.


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Glenn 'Stinky' Stankevicius
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« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2022, 08:53:21 PM »
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I tend to agree with Ken, but remember it is also a seller's market so if you really want an FE or FC be prepared to compromise and jump on any good thing when it presents itself, they ain't getting any cheaper!
Not to boast but I have stock and modified cars, driven both locally and interstate/long distance for Nationals or Club Runs and I wouldn't rate one over the other aside from the modified car being more fun on private property.
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ARL
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« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2022, 03:35:03 PM »
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Thanks heaps guys, much appreciated. Good point about getting the best body I can find to avoid a lot of difficult bodywork and painting. 

I have driven a stock FC recently, it was a great experience. My son loved how comfortable the back seat was! I must admit though, the drum brakes were quite an experience. Combined with no seat belts and steering that tended to drift about, it really kept me on my toes. I was surprised at the torque down low, it had no trouble getting out of corners in 3rd.

That particular car needed rubber seals all round, they were in a terrible state. It had been resprayed from the original in a nice colour, but closed door only, which detracted from it a bit.

For me seat belts, front discs and good steering would be a must. 

Cheers
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Fraze
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« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2022, 07:25:18 AM »
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Seat belts are a must! Disc brakes - I dunno,! I have an FC sedan and An FB ute on their original drums. I have fitted VH 44 brake boosters to both cars and the brakes are fine. Remember these cars are over 60 years old now and will never equate with a modern car. If you want modern car performance then buy a modern car. Re steering my cars used to get the wanders at speed. I found that paying particular attention to caster, camber and toe in , good quality tyres and tyre pressures solve that. I run 34 psi on Maxxis. Tyres on both cars and there is no wandering. A bonus is light( well, relatively) steering at parking speeds. My cars can run with modern traffic, and stop, with no problems at all. Cheers, Fraze
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Errol62
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« Reply #6 on: September 06, 2022, 07:53:41 AM »
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As long as you arenít racing, late braking or riding them down hill, drum brakes work just as well, but the EJ onward duo servo seem to work better, need less adjusting, and are less inclined to grabbing.


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mcl1959
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« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2022, 07:55:13 PM »
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Steering wander should be one of those jobs you describe as being able to do yourself. Apart from the fixes mentioned re tyres and settings, a steering box reco is not too difficult to do if it is worn.
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Errol62
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« Reply #8 on: September 06, 2022, 09:33:45 PM »
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$500 buys a brand new worm shaft and nut assembly, bearings, sector shaft and bushes. The bushes are a bit tricky and have to be reamed once installed. So best not to touch them unless they are worn.

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ARL
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« Reply #9 on: September 07, 2022, 02:17:58 PM »
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Thanks for your input guys, much appreciated. It sounds like my experience of the drum brakes and steering wasn't a good indication generally. Good to know these things could be improved without much trouble.
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RET
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« Reply #10 on: September 08, 2022, 09:01:15 PM »
+1

Once upon a time, if you put discs, or an auto, or a red motor, you were forced to put your car on full rego, which makes having a hobby/occasional use non-original car an expensive proposition. Fortunately in the last few years NSW have introduced the Classic Vehicle Scheme, which means that - for the price of wearing the sort of number plates you see on graders and street sweepers - you can use your modified car 60 times a year for a fraction of what full rego costs. It's about $100/yr, no green slip required, but you do need to remain a financial member of your club, and they may have rules about participation.

All that said, modifying a car almost certainly requires obtaining an engineer's certificate, which in turn means meeting any requirements that engineer may have, as well as the base regulations set out on the RMS website, sometimes known as "VSI06 Light Vehicle Modifications". That includes things like heater/demister, seatbelts, collapsible steering column, and more. Expenses can add up quickly.

So I would agree with some of the other correspondents here - unless you are lucky enough to find a modified, currently registered (in NSW) car that is close enough to what you want - you might be better off sticking with something original. Steering that wanders, or brakes that don't stop you properly are both problems that can be fixed without spending a fortune.

cheers
RET
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ARL
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« Reply #11 on: September 09, 2022, 02:41:39 PM »
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Thanks RET, you advice is much appreciated. I feel like I will now avoid a few of the pitfalls in getting started. 

Cheers
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fcute
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« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2022, 03:06:27 PM »
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A good read. I think discs are a must up front. My ute had drums all around okay for a once a week drive but any more you soon get, well I did sick of anticipating other drivers moves. If you are planning long drives and you go the stock route expect it to be a long drive.

It looks like you aren't so good don't rush in good cars do come up. As already said if rusty stay away the more you dig the more you will find and might easily outweigh the purrchase price of the car to fix, same for paint.
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