Need Assistance Purchasing a Non-Computerized Vehicle

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posted on Apr, 11 2012 @ 03:49 PM
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Originally posted by Invariance
I recommend FORD. Not so much cars and station wagons as pickups, or broncos... (4 wheel drive)

In my opinion Fords are tough, easy to repair, and most older Fords have interchangeable parts... My pickup has a Lincoln parts LOL


Small electronic parts such as the ignition module can be reverted to their mechanical counterpart in early models. Whatever vehicle you get, consider getting the manual for it too ... unless you know about those things (mechanics)

I also highly recommend an older standard vehicle, as you can 'pop the clutch' to get them going, not so with newer models.

Good luck
edit on 11-4-2012 by Invariance because: can't speel today


Yes, I was thinking of something with parts that could be easily replaced. I can't do a pickup, though, because I need at least a second seat. I do like old trucks, I learned to drive in a '64 Studebaker and a '72 Ford, but they just aren't what I need right now. My other vehicle is a '96 Ford Explorer that was gifted to me; I really only drive it for trips where I need to take everyone.

See, I didn't know that you could replace electronic parts with mechanical parts. That is fantastic.

Yes, I was also thinking a manual transmission makes more sense. I was just interested in finding out what other people had to say about it.

Thanks for the input!
edit on 4/11/2012 by ottobot because: (no reason given)




posted on Apr, 11 2012 @ 03:54 PM
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Poor electrics on old cars is almost always bad earths, usually either caused by rust on an earth point, poor battery connections or quite often some 'helpful rats nest wiring bodge' held together with selotape, blu-tack, chewing gum, some cheese... (you get the idea) that the bloke 18 owners back from you did to get his in car glitter ball working (or similar).



posted on Apr, 11 2012 @ 04:44 PM
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Originally posted by Anon77
Poor electrics on old cars is almost always bad earths, usually either caused by rust on an earth point, poor battery connections or quite often some 'helpful rats nest wiring bodge' held together with selotape, blu-tack, chewing gum, some cheese... (you get the idea) that the bloke 18 owners back from you did to get his in car glitter ball working (or similar).


Thank you for this confirmation of the grounding point issue.

I am the car's second owner and purchased it from a Dodge dealer about 12 years ago; the car was a couple of years old at that time. It didn't start having the electronic issues until about 6 years ago, and the issues come and go. One thing that I find strange is that my taillights and rear blinker lights burn out a lot. I have to replace at least one every year. The right rear brake light has burnt out the most (4 or 5 times since I've owned the car).The headlights and front blinkers have never had an issue.

I definitely will check the wiring and grounds.
edit on 4/11/2012 by ottobot because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 11 2012 @ 05:15 PM
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You better know what parts you are buying for your car.
There are the common backyard mechanic parts ready available at a cheap price, but are not good quality and won't last long. And expensive high quality parts that will last a long time, another reason to find a site with real people who will share their knowledge and experience with you.
Buying a car that is already restored can be expensive as a new car.
When starting a project car , get a folder and save every receipt.
If you do the work yourself or have a mechinic get a spare car because you will have down time.
And get a repair manual.



posted on Apr, 11 2012 @ 08:54 PM
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Originally posted by ottobot

Originally posted by Anon77
Poor electrics on old cars is almost always bad earths, usually either caused by rust on an earth point, poor battery connections or quite often some 'helpful rats nest wiring bodge' held together with selotape, blu-tack, chewing gum, some cheese... (you get the idea) that the bloke 18 owners back from you did to get his in car glitter ball working (or similar).


Thank you for this confirmation of the grounding point issue.

I am the car's second owner and purchased it from a Dodge dealer about 12 years ago; the car was a couple of years old at that time. It didn't start having the electronic issues until about 6 years ago, and the issues come and go. One thing that I find strange is that my taillights and rear blinker lights burn out a lot. I have to replace at least one every year. The right rear brake light has burnt out the most (4 or 5 times since I've owned the car).The headlights and front blinkers have never had an issue.

I definitely will check the wiring and grounds.
edit on 4/11/2012 by ottobot because: (no reason given)


Ahhh, Very telling that you say the lights burn out regularly. That does sound like an earth issue but I would also be looking very carefully at the voltage regulator and the diode pack on the alternator. Measure the battery voltage when the engine is running. More than about 14 volts or under 12.5 (or any hint of AC voltage in the reading) and you've probably got alternator diode pack problems.



posted on Apr, 12 2012 @ 09:12 AM
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Originally posted by OLD HIPPY DUDE
You better know what parts you are buying for your car.
There are the common backyard mechanic parts ready available at a cheap price, but are not good quality and won't last long. And expensive high quality parts that will last a long time, another reason to find a site with real people who will share their knowledge and experience with you.
Buying a car that is already restored can be expensive as a new car.
When starting a project car , get a folder and save every receipt.
If you do the work yourself or have a mechinic get a spare car because you will have down time.
And get a repair manual.


Yes, everything you've said makes sense.

Honestly, I am more interested in purchasing a car that has been well maintained than one that has been restored. I'm not particularly into "hot rods", so any car I purchase would likely just be a regular old car that someone has kept up the maintenance on. I've found several in my area for



posted on Apr, 12 2012 @ 09:17 AM
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Originally posted by Anon77
Ahhh, Very telling that you say the lights burn out regularly. That does sound like an earth issue but I would also be looking very carefully at the voltage regulator and the diode pack on the alternator. Measure the battery voltage when the engine is running. More than about 14 volts or under 12.5 (or any hint of AC voltage in the reading) and you've probably got alternator diode pack problems.


Excellent, thank you for the assistance in this matter - I figured it was all related, I just wasn't sure how.

I know I've got a voltmeter around somewhere that I've used when working on computers, and I'm pretty sure it goes up to at least 25v, so I will try to find it and make sure the leads are still good and try to measure how much power the battery is using.

Thank you kindly!



posted on Apr, 12 2012 @ 10:39 AM
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If you pay someone to troubleshoot an electical issue that could be a very big expense. The hourly rate to find a needle in a haystack will not be cheap. Ever look at a wiring diagram for a car.There can be several relays and switchs between point A and point B and a few connection points along the way and damage and/or bad repairs points any where in the wire it self.



posted on Apr, 12 2012 @ 11:42 AM
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Originally posted by OLD HIPPY DUDE
If you pay someone to troubleshoot an electical issue that could be a very big expense. The hourly rate to find a needle in a haystack will not be cheap. Ever look at a wiring diagram for a car.There can be several relays and switchs between point A and point B and a few connection points along the way and damage and/or bad repairs points any where in the wire it self.


Yeah, I know, this is part of the reason I want to learn to do repairs on my own. I hate to waste time and, therefore, money on diagnostics and repairs at a mechanic when I could do it at home and learn something valuable in the process.

I found the wiring diagram for my make/model and am looking at it to discern which wires are the most likely culprits. Narrowing it down this way will definitely help me to understand where/why the problems have occurred.



posted on Oct, 25 2012 @ 06:38 PM
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You want a pre OBD vehicle (on board diagnostics) I believe that was 1988? Your in the USA correct?



posted on Oct, 28 2012 @ 10:38 PM
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reply to post by Hr2burn
 


Yes, I am in the US. Ideally the vehicle would be early 1980's, but it really doesn't matter as long as I can learn how to take care of it and the parts will be relatively easy to find/replace.
edit on 10/28/12 by ottobot because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 5 2013 @ 04:16 AM
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Your best bet would be a 78-early 80's chevy impala or malibu, or nova wagon. If it has the 5.7 diesel (and by some miracle is still running) pass on it, horrible engine. What you want is the 5.0 (305 cu in) or 5.7 (350 cu in) V8. Those cars are well built and last forever. My grandmother had a 79 Caprice sedan with the 350 that had over 270,000 miles when parked, but still ran like a top, and yes, it had never been overhauled. Other cars to look for, if it's a Chrysler (or dodge or plymouth) the 318 (5.2 Liter) or 360 (5.9 Liter) are good engines, but for the most reliability find one with the 225 (3.7 liter) inline ("slant") 6. That is arguably the most reliable engine ever built by Chrysler. Avoid anything that fuel injected, as it most likely has some form of computer. AMC's are another choice, if it's in good shape with an inline 6, then it's a good buy, however their V8's were good too, if a little thirsty. As for Ford, you're best bet would be the 302 (5.0 liter) as it's nearly as common as the small block chevy.

If you find a GM product and the emissions sticker on the radiator top (this is a good way to find what engine it is btw) says 4.9 liter, stay away from it, that's the 301 Pontiac, it's a decent engine, but parts are hard to come by as it was only produced from 1977-1981 and doesn't share a lot of parts with the mainline Pontiac engines (i.e. 267-455). Also if it says 4.3 liter, and it's a V8, you'd be best to pass on it as well, it could either be the Chevrolet 267 (which isn't a bad engine, only pathetically underpowered, the same for the Chevy 262) or it could be a Pontiac 265 which is essentially the Pontiac 301 with a smaller cylinder bore and sharing the same hard to find parts as the 301. Either could be in nearly any GM car from the late 70s to early 80s as GM was fixing to go to a corporate engine and was trying different ones out, that's why some of them could also have the 307 (5.0 Liter) or 403 (6.6 Liter) Oldsmobile engines, which are good engines, and share most parts with mainline Oldsmobile V8's.

Hopefully I haven't confused you yet. If you want to know more, just ask. Also, If you live in a state that doesn't require emissions testing, you'll want to get rid of most of the smog junk as it really does no good and robs power and economy.



posted on Mar, 13 2013 @ 10:55 PM
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Any pre 1994 (for most manufactures) are good. before the OBD 1 computer comes into play. mid '90's are when computers are put into cars. Checking the car before buying.....open the hood and let the car idle on a flat, clean concrete surface for about 10 minutes. underneath the hood look for any kind of oil stains/leaks, rusty parts, frayed electrical or anything that could use replacing. while the car is is idle....move it forward after a little while and check the concrete to see if there were any stains...the more leaks, the worst it was. also mileage...however, with a vehicle without a computer system, its possible the owner may have rolled the odometer backwards. lastly, a manual transmission is ALWAYS better and more reliable than an automatic. (as long as you can shift, but a clutch isnt that expensive nor hard to replace)





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