I've got my eye on a 66 that has about 30K original miles on a 283 motor with a 2sp PG. The car has minor surface rust and everything else is in great condition. Paint is good from 10 ft away and no major oxidation or rust. Trim is all there...some pieces could use resto parts. The guy is also giving me certain extra trim and tails that he intended to put on. The asking price is right and now I need to make a decision.
My question to all the members with kids: I love my kids and I love my cars. I have not had a project in a long time and I've had this itch to work on something for the past 3 or 4 months. It's an itch that has not gone away and I think having something in my garage will help. I would like to stay on a budget of about 6K to get it roadworthy and mods (keeping the stock motor for now). That would be ideal. My question is... how did you all prioritize or justify (I know the family is my #1 priority) working on a car and keeping the spouse (wife) happy.
We are middle class, wife is a stay at home mom, I own my house (mortgage)...this purchase will not put us in financial peril. Perhaps I've already answered my own question, but has anyone here regretted buying and fixing up a car at too young an age? I am 34 by the way. Any advice is appreciated...
Had mine since 18 yrs old that was back in 1975. Used then as daily driver and fixed, repaired and restored through the years as time and money allowed. Learned an awful lot by owning this car and having to learn how to fix just about everything. Many years of fun, swap meets, car shows, junk yards, etc. Great learning experience, also great if kids can be involved. Many more parts are repro'd at this point so you can restore as you see fit.
Just as info, car is just about fully resorted back to original. Unfortunately, it spends most of its time in my garage on a battery tender next to my Harley on its battery tender.
1966 Impala SS
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I can tell you from experience, there are few things in this world that feel as good as owning and driving a car you personally have restored, and done right. I did my first at age 30, and have done several since. The first time you win a major award is a pretty big thrill, also.
Your brain needs a break from saving for retirement, college money for kids, mortgages, spouse, yard work, job, etc.
Getting this car is a good diversion to keep you sane. Get the kids involved and you the kids and the car can grow up together and bond with the car. You will make new friends in the hobby to help you along the way.
I spent many a late night working in my garage on a project car. Some nights the wife didn't like it because I put the car first. I told her at least I wasn't in a bar drinking or running around. I was just right here in the garage. Gives a guy a lot of time to think also.
I agree with everyone, keep the wife happy first (easiest way is buy her a nice new car, LOL). It also helps if she likes the car that's going to keep you away! I'm 36, restoring an old impala, maintaining a newer Cadillac lowrider, washing my wifes new car and keeping up my daily driver. Wish I had more time for everything, but taking the family on a cruise for ice cream and to the beach helps keep the wife and 3 kids involved. Good Luck!
Thanks for all the input guys! I figured no one would object to my ideas. The comment that hit most to home was getting away from all the "life" crap. I've got $ going into retirement funds, I keep the yard clean, even if the dog does use it as his personal toilet, and the wife is happy with her minivan (I traded in my Cadillac STS-V for it...DOH!). So I decided to pull the trigger and if all works out, I will be picking up the 66 on the 22nd.
Good luck with the '66. I bought a '66 SS 396 convertible over the summer. I looked for one for 5 months before the right car for me became available. I owned one back in the day and thought it would be fun to have one again after almost half a century.
Keep an eye on the budget of money and time. Those late nights alone in the garage are good therapy and the weekends with the kids helping out is great fun. You will bust a few knuckles, swear a lot and say you hate the car when the work is difficult. In the end there is always a sense of pride and accomplishment when a task in completed.
I'm on my 9th year of resto. on my 68 vert. Like Larry said at least you could find me in the garage. Yes its taking longer than most restos. but it a hobby that I always liked but keeping a balance is the key. For me its a great stress relief from everyday crap. As long as I can spend a few dollars on it once in a while its worth it. After all once I finish--and it's never really finished-- I would have nothing else to do.
Nice car, nice wheels dadstoy. I'm having a running debate with my wife who sez leave the 14" wheels and SS hub caps the way they are, original from the past. I think I want 17" wheels like yours and put in front disc brakes. I can't have both unless I leave the original drum brakes.