Oct. 7, 2014 7:43 a.m.

In 2012 I took a new job which entailed us moving up to Maryland. After a house search that took longer than it should have we finally bought a place in August of 2013, sold our old place in South Carolina the same month, and moved most of our stuff up north.

But we still had two storage units in SC with stuff we just couldn't fit in the big moving trip...one storage unit was household stuff, and we managed to get that moved up this spring. The other unit was a good chunk of my car stuff.

This weekend we went back to SC to visit friends and family and brought a trailer to haul the car parts storage unit contents up to our new home. Holy crap. The stuff I had stashed in there- at least 7 fenders, 4 quarter panel section, 6 or 7 engines, a bunch more engine parts, 4 transmissions, 4 rear axles (including one I couldn't even identify!), a front end, several bumpers and other miscellaneous trim and body parts, glass, at least two dozen radiators (!!) and boxes and boxes and boxes of smaller parts. Most of it's Volvo 122 Amazon and P1800 parts, but there's Mopar stuff there too (I had a '63 and '64 Dart that I have now sold) and and a few parts we took off of our '75 LTD LeMons car.

I realize now even more than before that I probably have more spare Volvo parts than I could ever need. When I part a car, I save everything- every little bracket, plastic piece, etc. If it's in any kind of salvageable condition, it gets saved. But it's gotten to the point where it needs to find others who will use them.

Anyone want to set up a vintage Volvo parts selling warehouse with me? ;-)

Powar SuperDork
Oct. 7, 2014 7:45 a.m.

Maybe we could make it a Swedish specialty shop and I can add all of my Saab parts to the mix. Argh.

Spinout007 UltraDork
Oct. 7, 2014 8:25 a.m.

If it's any consolation, we cleared out a storage unit earlier this year that was full of parts pulled from a single Fbody. It has been an astonishing learning curve on selling parts, but I will say I've pulled more $$ out of it than I ever dreamed I would.

Stealthtercel
Oct. 7, 2014 8:30 a.m.

I was going to say you could call the business "Inadvertent Parts Depot," but I guess those initials have been taken....

Oct. 7, 2014 9:01 a.m.
Powar wrote: Maybe we could make it a Swedish specialty shop and I can add all of my Saab parts to the mix. Argh.

Sounds like a solid business plan to me.

hobiercr Dork
Oct. 7, 2014 9:04 a.m.

Joe Lazenby at Susquehanna Spares might take some of that off your hands. He is a good guy and helped me out on some stuff I needed.

In regards to starting a Volvo (and Saab) parts selling warehouse, I'm in. Disassembling cars and helping people keep theirs on the road sounds way more fun than my current gig.

Rob_Mopar SuperDork
Oct. 7, 2014 9:32 a.m.

I have a buddy into '64 Darts. Depending on what you have leftover I could put you in touch with him.

Oct. 7, 2014 9:55 a.m.
hobiercr wrote: Joe Lazenby at Susquehanna Spares might take some of that off your hands. He is a good guy and helped me out on some stuff I needed. In regards to starting a Volvo (and Saab) parts selling warehouse, I'm in. Disassembling cars and helping people keep theirs on the road sounds way more fun than my current gig.

I'm in the process of parting out a 544 now, a 122 in the garage getting put back together for sale, and 2 or 3 other 122's that probably are too rusty to be restored that should be parted.

Oct. 7, 2014 9:57 a.m.
Rob_Mopar wrote: I have a buddy into '64 Darts. Depending on what you have leftover I could put you in touch with him.

a good (non rusty, non dented) right and left front fender, two lower front valences, a nice '63 grille, two sets of the headlight trim rings, and boxes of other stuff. I also have a set of those Schumaker 318 to 360 K frame adaptor mounts for a B body.

Oh, and a convertible top frame for a 63/4.

Ian F UltimaDork
Oct. 7, 2014 10:22 a.m.
volvoclearinghouse wrote:
Powar wrote: Maybe we could make it a Swedish specialty shop and I can add all of my Saab parts to the mix. Argh.

Sounds like a solid business plan to me.

Other than the established competition: aforementioned Susquehanna Spares (in PA), irollmotors (in CA), Don T (in NY), etc. At least for old Volvo bits. I'm less familiar with old Saab stuff.

In all seriousness, if the goal is to mainly unload it and getting some cash would be a plus, combine resources, load up a trailer and get a space at Carlisle during the Import show. The guys who really go there to sell can do well.

EvanR
EvanR Dork
Oct. 7, 2014 1:37 p.m.

I made a sizable income in the late 90s and early 2000s breaking Volvos (mostly 240s) for parts. I had a good reputation, both on eBay and the online Volvo community, for selling good parts at fair prices.

Two things killed my business...

a) Scrap metal prices went through the roof. Every moron with a trailer was scouring the neighborhoods for junk cars, lowballing the owners, and hauling them straight to the scrapyards. Those $100 junkers I was buying went up to $250, and it seriously ate into my profits.

b) Specialty pickers. People were seeing what Volvo parts were selling for, and what the DIY junkyards were charging for the same parts. Guys like that had no overhead and little need for storage space, and could/would undercut my pricing.

All that having been said, you are in a slightly different boat - but I suspect you have a good reputation in the online Volvo community like I did. If you're not in a major hurry, you can sell what you have piecemeal and make a few dollars. Just be aware how small the pre-240 community is, and take your time.

Oct. 7, 2014 1:46 p.m.

My experience has been that a lot of people have a very inflated idea of what scrap is worth. I have haggled hard to get scrap 122's for under $250, since the whole car only weighs a bit more than a ton. People either think scrap prices are higher than what they are, or the cars weigh more than they do.

Sure, you can piece down a car and scrap out aluminum pistons and wheels, radiator, and battery for more $$$, and I do, but that all takes TIME. Time = $$.

In the end, though, the scrap shell is worth more now than it used to be, and most of the valuable parts (except the engine) don't usually weigh much. I figure I'll still get $100 to $150 out of a parted out car for scrap.

I'm not in a huge hurry- I've been collecting this stuff over the past decade and it's all moved up here now to my sheds. I do have some online reputation, a 100% ebay feedback, and I try to charge reasonable prices. My biggest problem is finding the time to sell- listing, taking pictures, dealing with enquiries, etc. It's a full time job- and I already have one of those. I've thought about hiring help and splitting the profits, but my general experience has been that folks who have the time to help out have the time for a reason.

Sine_Qua_Non HalfDork
Oct. 7, 2014 2:32 p.m.

Only problem is the expensive shipping cost. Nobody wants to pay the shipping cost anymore since gas has gone up. As someone else mentioned, taking it to a car show is going to be your best bet in getting rid of stuff aside from possible local buyers.

plance1 SuperDork
Oct. 7, 2014 7:01 p.m.

I could have used some of your parts....

I made the mistake of thinking I could save money by changing the fuel filter and the fuel pumps on my 940 turbo. Big mistake, all of the bolts were rusted...I couldn't get anything loose so I was under my car with a hacksaw for about a week now. I ended up taking the banjo fitting at the filter to autozone where I promptly broke it. I then learned that volvo does not make or stock this part but I embarked upon a never ending search for it anyway. A mechanic took pity on me and gave me a similar fitting from a mercedes but unfortunately after putting everything back together I now have leak...some who are more knowledgeable then me (everyone) think I may have cracked this fitting. So tomorrow I'm going to take it off and check it out. Hopefully its just the copper washers. Working on cars sucks. Working on cars with a lack of parts sucks more. Having parts, even if you have to transport them, does not suck.

Mad_Ratel New Reader
Oct. 7, 2014 7:24 p.m.
volvoclearinghouse wrote:
Rob_Mopar wrote: I have a buddy into '64 Darts. Depending on what you have leftover I could put you in touch with him.

a good (non rusty, non dented) right and left front fender, two lower front valences, a nice '63 grille, two sets of the headlight trim rings, and boxes of other stuff. I also have a set of those Schumaker 318 to 360 K frame adaptor mounts for a B body.

Oh, and a convertible top frame for a 63/4.

I know a guy with four darts... he's in fort mill, sc. Could probably have used ALL your parts...

Oct. 8, 2014 7:35 a.m.
TheDeafElectrician wrote:
hobiercr wrote: In regards to starting a Volvo (and Saab) parts selling warehouse, I'm in. Disassembling cars and helping people keep theirs on the road sounds way more fun than my current gig.

Its VERY easy if you have A: space B: tools C: space D:tow rig(optional) and E: space

P.S.: If it sells for less than 20, I toss it if it does not fit in a padded envelope. People like seeing "Free Shipping" on the ad on the bay. If it doesn't fit those criteria, it tends to not be worth the space it takes up or the drive to the P.O.

Well, I have all of the above. but I still need F) Time.

You and Sine make valid points about shipping. I don't tend to bother with smaller stuff, or I'll lump it together in one eBay listing to sell for more. Another option, if you have a bunch of smaller stuff, is to have all the options go at once, so at least you can combine trips to USPS. Of course, then you end up with one guy who paypals you right away and demands his part immediately, and another guy who lollygags and doesn't pay you for 3 or 4 days. But if you have 8 or 10 auctions, you can usually get away with only 2 or 3 trips to USPS. And USPS will do home pickup now, if you have a home scale and packing materials and such (I do)

It is very nice to have parts. I just picked up another 122 wagon, and it has needs, but just about all of the hard parts are things I have like 4 of already. Were I to have to go to someone and buy the parts individually, it'd cost me hundreds in shipping, but all I have to do is go to me shed and pick them off a shelf.

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