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I'm looking at getting the body work done on my car, and I want to know about how much I'd be spending. My fiancee seems to think $1,000 to $1,500 for all that. I think she's mental. Here's a link to photos of all the damage to my car. Trying to figure out if I'm better off buying a $1400 car that the bodywork is finished on, and transferring my TCP suspension.

http://www.mercurycougar.net/forums/album.php?albumid=549
 

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You state, $1,400.00 for one with all the body work done, do you know HOW the body work was done?

Often a owner will BONDO, BONDO, just to sell the car, may be, maybe not.

Dale in Indy
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I gotta go look at it tomorrow. But I know how to find bondo on a car. Kind of.
 

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yeah um ur in way over1 1500 worth of body work aka, rust repair. some of your rust has been bondo'd already and thats just covering up a larger rust issue. 1000-1500 will cover one or two rust areas maybe and thats it.
 

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Doesn't look that bad though to make it worthwhile to buy another and go through all of the work to swap everything over unless you get a steal of a deal on another one.
 

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hmm...i hate rust more than anything but the amount of money spent on a cougar without rust these days is insane. I would take the car and media blast it and see what all you have. I say media blast because I hate taking a DA to the whole thing. I see it this way, you already have a car, to go out and buy one without much body damage or rust is gonna cost ya a lot. You need to make a budget and account that paint and body work will probably be the most expensive part on the car depending on how nice and shiny you want it to be. I'm doing all the bodywork myself on my car and I'm thinking it will be about $2500 when its all said and done (i get deals on supplies and do all the work myself.... Next you need to ask yourself....is it really worth the time and energy to fix what I have?....i ask myself that every day and I'm wondering if I am becoming mental because it seems like nothing ever is getting done. I hope i didn't discourage any just laying out there for ya.
 

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$1500 If your using decent products that'll bairley get you the paint supplies......
 

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x3 not even a down payment on a decent job...... I bought paint (BC/CC) and primer not long ago....nuthing fancy just black - $480 just for that. That doesn't include all the sandpaper/filler/sealer/etc. Now once you throw in some labor hours - you are in a new ball park. As I have said many times - a better car to start with is way cheaper than a car that needs a lot of help. Even if you do the majority of the work you have to account for your time in the greater scheme of things. Time is money....
 

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I would look pretty hard at the other car. The work around the rear window alone is scary to me...Drivers side rear quarter window.It looks like a mostly solid car though. How are the floor boards and trunk? I had similar patch area's on my 69's doors, that wasn't too bad. The area's that I thought would be an easy patch, turned out to require full rear quarter replacement. I had a 'spare' rear clip that my body guy is using. If you can do the body work, then it doesn't look that bad...If you are going to have to pay somebody, I would really sit down with a calculator, and run some numbers. When you start paying folks, it starts getting expensive. I'm looking at 2K for body work, and another 4 for paint..."Lucky" for me, I can do most of my own engine work...
 

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You are a zero short if you are going to hire it done. Even if you do all the work yourself you cannot touch the paint for $1400. And from looking at that quarter panel, you are going to find a lot of stuff once your strip all the paint. Gonna need some donor metal or intensive fabricating. Bondo is for finishing not for fixing.
 

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X4. You really can't afford to do just the body work much less the paint. Bad69cat said he paid $480 for his paint. I can tell you my supplies from PPG run about $160/gal for primer, $60 for catalyst, $300 SS urethane, $100 for catalyst after which there is reducer and hardener. Then $1500 for paint and breathing equipment. Buffing and polishing equipment ran another $550 before supplies. Good 120v welder was $400 on a special sale after which there is safety equipment and gas. CA labor rate between $80-100/hr. and generally slightly lower than repair shops. Just a quirk I've seen between body shops and repair shops. So this may give you and idea why $10,000 might be a closer estimate for Southern California. Oh, and they will be using water borne base coat and even though a water solvent it isn't cheaper than the old solvent based base coat of 2 years ago.

Either you need to do everything from fabrication to welding to painting or find a better candidate.
 

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I just "helped" a friend with his Dad's '56 Chevy Truck. They took it to 2 shops over the years and each sat on it for 2+ years. They got it back after the second shop had a fire and burned the right front side! I took it in and did all the metal work and got it in primer (1 year), then it went to someone else for paint, which was $8500, then I put it back together. All in all they spent about $25K, plus parts to have it restored. And that's about half what a commercial shop would charge.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Well, I looked at the other car. There is no rust that I can find anywhere on it. Even in the trunk where the quarter panels meet the trunk are solid. I looked under the car, inside the dash, it's totally rust free. And I talked him down to 1000. I found a teeny bit of bondo on the driver's door (using a magnet) and someone used some bondo to fill the seams between the body and the pot metal end caps. But that was it. I'm pretty well decided that this car is a MUCH better starting point. Now I have to pull all my suspension back apart. And the best part, the car is a block away from the shop that's doing my cage and turbos!
 

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If you can work him down to $800 take it! I am still a little weary on the bondo on the quarter caps to fill in the seams and door as that tells me that someone has had it for some repair or something earlier down the road and what was the quality of the work.

Other than that, if you know what you are looking for and it looks better than the one you have I'd do it for that price and you can always strip all the stuff you don't want off both cars and make your money back x5 by selling it all online. The last $500 1968 parts car I bought for a few things made me enough money to pay for my professional paint job.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I think they filled the seams to go for a smoothed look. And he won't go to $800. That much I know.
 

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The bondo in the seams between the end caps and the fenders and quarters WILL crack........
 

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Discussion Starter #18
It already has. I'm just going to dig the filling out of there and re-spray it flat black until all the major work is done.
 

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If it has far less rust, no major frame damage, and the roof is solid, buy the $1000 car. The rust holes in the roof alone will cost more than that to fix correctly. I have been working on a '69 with far less rust, but a bunch of body damage. The roof had dents and some rust and it has been a nightmare to get it right. Started last July and I'm finally getting the first real coat of primer on it this weekend. A shop would have charged at least $4-5K for what I've done.

Good luck with your project!
 
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