frenchyd
frenchyd UltimaDork
8/3/21 4:29 p.m.

That car you found?  Are you going to restore it or race it?  Here's how to figure it out.  


IF YOUR UNDER 90  Both choices are open to you. Paul Newman was racing at LeMans 24 hour race well into his 80's I've raced with guys well into their late 80's. Most impressive was a guy who dug his old race car out and in the winter drove it down to the Bahama's  raced at speed weeks and drove it back home.  He was 87.  Not towed, drove!  No windows,  top, heater or anything approaching civilized. 
    Now about money.   A good paint job is Uber expensive even if you do it your self.  ( that's major time consuming)   Then there is the cost of chrome plating. 
       

buenavides1
buenavides1 New Reader
8/9/21 7:24 p.m.

You have a point but at the end of the day, it really depends on the owner's plan for the car. 

Tim Suddard
Tim Suddard Publisher
8/10/21 10:25 a.m.

You should rent a race car before you build one. A lot of people have spent time and money, only to realize racing is not their thing.

frenchyd
frenchyd UltimaDork
8/10/21 10:43 p.m.

In reply to Tim Suddard :

Sorry , I first started racing back in 1962 and have raced since.  I started this,  was interrupted and then got completely locked out of finishing it.     
    

frenchyd
frenchyd UltimaDork
8/10/21 11:14 p.m.

Back to the post, the cost of a good restoration is typically going to be multiples of its market price.
    While skilled DIY guys may be able to approach or even exceed a professional shops workmanship, generally the highest bids go for cars with a known pedigree. 
   Race cars tend to sell based on their on track performance / reliability.  
     Then there is what your goals are.   If you're a poseur. Just would rather sit around and talk about performance. Then by all means please do that. I understand the word poseur has pejorative  connotations.  I don't mean to be.  

     A racer can have the same pejorative  connotations.   Yes, vintage racers tend to be both.  We love to have our cars beautiful and nicely restored.  And we can because of the 13/13 rule. In other words Vintage racing is No contact!    We may drive our cars to the limit. But we are required to be in control.   
      Look, even show cars eventually get scratches, garage rash, trailer rash.  And Vintage race cars get that.  But maybe those will buff out or can be touched up.  Or maybe it's covered with vinyl?  Whatever. 
    When we go out on the track, we are simply enjoying the car. Not set records. The history of the car is already written. Maybe it's a tribute car, a nod to past fame. Or. A composite of various cars of the past?  

      The advantage of Vintage racing is the motivation to update or "cheat" really is gone.   The history is already written. We know Newer will be faster.  So we don't have to buy the lastest trick of the week. Or cutting edge anything.  Yeh, you show up with modern improvements and others see you, expect a quiet conversation explaining what Vintage racing is about. Gentle encouragement to keep to the spirit of the rules. 
     

frenchyd
frenchyd UltimaDork
8/11/21 10:23 a.m.
buenavides1 said:

You have a point but at the end of the day, it really depends on the owner's plan for the car. 

Absolutely.  My thought is that a restoration isn't the only thing to do with a car.  Older cars usually don't make good daily drivers. And sitting in a garage waiting for the occasional car show  to have people nit pick details such as if original  screws were Reed and Prince or Phillips Head.  Or how many points to deduct for the blade of grass stuck in the tire tread. 
     There is a joy on a race track. Exhilaration over a friendly dice.  When a competitor dented the back of his multi million dollar Ferrari, David Love just had it repaired.  It still brought a record price when he passed away and his heirs sold it. 
    That was because in 5 decades. That was the only time it had been hurt. Thanks to the No Contact rule. 
     

ddavidv
ddavidv UltimaDork
8/12/21 6:27 a.m.

You also should get your medical done before making that decision. No sense building a car you can't race. Fortunately I sold mine before I developed problems...at 55.

frenchyd
frenchyd UltimaDork
8/12/21 1:01 p.m.

In reply to ddavidv :

That's a valid consideration. But really shouldn't you have gotten a medical check over before you bought it?  I mean do you really want your heirs to inherit a pile of parts, should something happen to you either way?  
I have a CDL.  That means doctors think I'm safe enough to pick up and deliver 500+ kids daily for the next couple of years. But some doctors won't sign off on a  race license because it says right on the medical form dangerous activity. 

Tom1200
Tom1200 SuperDork
8/15/21 4:23 p.m.

I've know more than one person who stumbled upon their condition through a race physical. One of them was a runner, the Doc noticed something ever so slightly abnormal, they had no outward signs of anything till they got an EKG. 

Most regular physicals do not involve EKGs.

dougie
dougie HalfDork
8/16/21 11:05 p.m.
frenchyd said:
buenavides1 said:

You have a point but at the end of the day, it really depends on the owner's plan for the car. 

Absolutely.  My thought is that a restoration isn't the only thing to do with a car.  Older cars usually don't make good daily drivers. And sitting in a garage waiting for the occasional car show  to have people nit pick details such as if original  screws were Reed and Prince or Phillips Head.  Or how many points to deduct for the blade of grass stuck in the tire tread. 
     There is a joy on a race track. Exhilaration over a friendly dice.  When a competitor dented the back of his multi million dollar Ferrari, David Love just had it repaired.  It still brought a record price when he passed away and his heirs sold it. 
    That was because in 5 decades. That was the only time it had been hurt. Thanks to the No Contact rule. 
     

Ditto.....If you like to drive fast, race it. I raced when young and took many years off while raising a family. Having a classic street car was fun, but it didn't fill the desire to go fast again on the track. So I bought a dedicated car for the track and have enjoyed 15 years of road racing throughout the US and figure I've got 20+ years left. I've had some good dices with some pretty special cars.....

frenchyd
frenchyd UltimaDork
8/17/21 4:04 p.m.

In reply to dougie :

If you race it, they will come.  My field of dreams.  If you look at my heading. That field of cars is probably close to 200  million dollars.  I know the 2 Ferrari's sold for over 100 million.  
But it's sure not about money.  The guys in that race were really nice people.  Lent me parts,  gave me advice, friendly to chat with, Gentlemen to race with. 

   Then at the award ceremony on the air craft carrier  I met their wives. A very friendly bunch of Ladies with absolutely no pretense even though some obviously came from a long line of blue bloods. 
 When I grow up that's exactly how I'd like to be.  Or maybe in my next life?  

frenchyd
frenchyd UltimaDork
8/17/21 4:09 p.m.
Tom1200 said:

I've know more than one person who stumbled upon their condition through a race physical. One of them was a runner, the Doc noticed something ever so slightly abnormal, they had no outward signs of anything till they got an EKG. 

Most regular physicals do not involve EKGs.

I get annual check ups and semi annual ones because I drive a school bus.  A race physical is more about explaining sports car  racing to the doctor than anything.  I suppose it helps that I'm often so relaxed waiting for the race to start that once  strapped in I frequently take a little nap to be woke up by the glorious   sound of open exhausts . 

frenchyd
frenchyd UltimaDork
8/18/21 8:22 p.m.

Vintage Racing affords us older  racers once more a chance to live on the edge, doing something we enjoy without the need to prove ourselves.

     A restoration, even a perfectly done restoration affords others the opportunity to blindly criticize your best work at no risk to them but can be horribly embarrassing to the restorer.  
    Racing on the other hand allows you to define success and enjoy life on your own terms. 

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