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by StevenLA » Sun Jun 23, 2019 6:15 am

Good evening Gentleman !

I just bought a 1974 Interceptor here in Los Angeles, the car is in pieces, no engine or transmission.

The car has boxes of old parts and pieces. The car was registered in the US in 1975 and has the desirable wood dash.

Someone took the louvered hood and replaced it with a plain earlier hood/bonnet.

So the question where to begin , paint, interior, engine trans wiring ????

I have been offered an original used not rebuilt Jensen 440 engine and transmission for $3,500.Do I buy this engine/trans or as many of my friends have suggested buy a new 440 crate engine and trans which costs around $12,000.

This is all a little overwhelming for me as I usually buy running driving cars. Do I attempt to restore this car or sell it as is and buy another running driving car ?

My mechanic friend thinks that this car is an easy rebuild as the engine and trans is already removed and the body ready for bodywork and paint and the interior also removed.

Anyway thanks for any advice or comments.

Cheers Steven.
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by StevenLA » Sun Jun 23, 2019 6:21 am

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by Richard Calver » Sun Jun 23, 2019 6:38 am

>Do I attempt to restore this car or sell it as is and buy another running driving car ?
Buy another car.

>My mechanic friend thinks that this car is an easy rebuild
No Jensen is an easy rebuild. You won't get out of this for under $100K, unless you bodge it.
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by colin7673 » Sun Jun 23, 2019 7:52 am

While I do agree with Richard, it depends on what you want, you are lucky that your in the right country, Engnie and Gear box.
If you want to restore to your very own personal Jensen Interceptor, with updated and modern more reliable and fuel efficient components, then you have a good starting block, if you want to restore to original, then, personally I'd look for one that is road worthy and running where you could do a 'rolling restoration'
It does depend on how deep your pockets are
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by slotcarone » Sun Jun 23, 2019 12:28 pm

Good thing is the body appears original and rust free. That being said you have a huge undertaking there and realistically should only be done by a person/shop that is familiar with these cars. So much of the car needs to be done and there is a lot of mechanical bits missing from what I can see. I suggest getting yourself a running driving car unless you are ready to spend a few years and a ton of bucks on this one. If you have never driven an Interceptor these are really enjoyable cars to drive and own! :)
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by kenny38 » Sun Jun 23, 2019 1:16 pm

Dodge the bullet and send it to the crusher. The awful Calver is always right. If you are now fully aware that a good resto will cost circa $100K look for a top car and enjoy your life. It's too short to spend on this tarp dweller. Good luck. Kenny38 8)
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by Grant » Sun Jun 23, 2019 4:18 pm

ImageYears and years and loads and loads of moneyImage.. move it on sport and buy something you can driveImage, I thought you already had an early Mk3 No?Image
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by StevenLA » Sun Jun 23, 2019 4:47 pm

Thanks for all the great advice !

I agree this is a huge undertaking and requires time money and effort.

I have a friend that restores classic cars and to him it is not a big deal, as the engine and trans is American and out of the car.

The body is rust free and all the panels are there.The interior leather parts are not that complicated, we have plenty of upholster's here in LA.

We have a Jensen wiring expert here in LA that we know.

We can do it, the question is do we want to go down that road, as was said "life is to short"

Regards Cheers Steven.
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by kenny38 » Mon Jun 24, 2019 3:48 am

Dear Steve. There is a magnificent S1 for sale near you by Britarms (member of JOC) Asking $65K. Has great history. S1 better propersition in excellent order than a resto S2 costing you precious years of frustration and disappointment. Of course your mates can "do it" Anything can be fixed if enough loot is thrown at it. Be aware they are not in the business of refusing work from people with, hopefully, substancial resources. Be that person who gets the money thrown at you or send it to Grant for the steering wheel??? I repeat. Buy a very good car with all the work done and owner still going sleepless over the difference between what was spent and what he will get for the car. Do not be a hero or Chapter 11 beckons. Kenny38 8)
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by StevenLA » Mon Jun 24, 2019 2:40 pm

Dear Kenny,
Good morning and cheers mate !

Yes, the consensus is walk away from the car.

I just wanted to save the Jensen from the knackers yard.

I hate to see an interceptor abused and go to waste !!

Have a wonderful week to everyone and thanks again for all your sober comments.

Cheers Steven.
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by Dion » Mon Jun 24, 2019 5:36 pm

Another view. If you are not aiming for a "factory new" and correct Interceptor, or a 100% show car and do much/most of the work yourself (or know friends / cheap places) then you can have this car in a good decent running condition for far, far, far less.
Mechanics are relatively cheap, especially in the US. A used Chrysler 440 engine / 727 transmission should be much cheaper to find. Interior may be the biggest spending. You are lucky with the car having a rust and damage free body as this otherwise would be the bit that would be the most expensive.

We Jensen owners are not all alike - I do not care much for "as new" show cars, much rather see good used examples with the "incorrect" bit here and there. Good luck with it.
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by felixkk » Mon Jun 24, 2019 6:32 pm

If you have the sum mentioned to invest in a restoration over the next few years, and you have good and knowledgable mechanics/specialists, you‘ll know what you have and you can decide on the details. It’ll be your car through and through. You might spend more, but Jensens will only increase in value in the long run (unless everything goes down the drain). I‘m with Dion, but get the chassis done. Don‘t buy a car which looks nice but isn‘t restored from ground up, you may end up spending more. Go look at Britarms car...
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by BritArms » Thu Jun 27, 2019 5:48 am

First of all. Thank you to the people recommending he comes to see my car..Secondly their no way he can restore that car for $100,000... To have the painted correctly will be about $30,000..Interior $25,000..Engine and Trans rebuild $15,000 ( stock ) easy going up to $25,000 with upgrades.. Electrics $$$ ????...brakes , wheels tires..and on and on... I done a ground up restoration on a convertible 15 years ago..Cost then was $165,000 only to sell it 6 years ago for $75,000...
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by Chris_R » Thu Jun 27, 2019 9:56 am

I confess to being really puzzled by some of the numbers here. A paint bill like that equates to at least 600 hours work at £40/hour. Really? That's 15 weeks solid work @ 40/hours a week, without a break. I struggle to comprehend that. Of course it does depend what level of finish you want. A Pebble Beach Concours finish will of course take a lot more time (and therefore cost) than a respectable daily driver finish but a lot of people would be quite happy with the latter.
In the UK you can get a 727 transmission rebuilt for around £1,000. A friend has just had his 440 rebuilt for £1,700 plus the cost of parts by a very reputable person who does many Chrysler units. The parts costs (pistons, carb, manifold, billet roller rockers, cam etc. etc.) was about the same. Forged crank was extra. Around £6k - £7k tops all in including dyno time, not $15k. I do believe there are restorers around that really do take advantage and significantly overcharge for what they do.
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by kenny38 » Thu Jun 27, 2019 1:47 pm

If we keep pulling old heartbreak wrecks apart and throwing money around like Polish sailors on shore leave our cars will never be worth very much at all. All prices will be compared with hopeless restos. Am aware that some do come back from the "knackers yard" and are transformed in a way that only the new owner will profit. However the vast majority smack of constant self indulgence and perhaps the dreaded Aspergers which will only get worse. Doing up a shite heap is nothing more than modern self flagellation. there. Kenny38 8)
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