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View Full Version : TR2/3/3A Possible TR3



GBRandy
09-18-2009, 06:02 PM
OK. This might be a bit out of my budget range, but what do you guys think of this TR3?

Black TR3 on eBay (https://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1958-TR3-RESTORED-BLACK-WITH-WIRE-WHEELS-OVERDRIVE_W0QQitemZ140346728183QQcmdZViewItemQQptZ US_Cars_Trucks?hash=item20ad511ef7&_trksid=p4506.c 0.m245)

Asking more so I can learn on what to look for than actual coaching on a purchase...but then again....

Don Elliott
09-18-2009, 06:19 PM
It's very similar to my black / red 1958 TR3A but the paint has been polished to a "flatter" finish than my 96 point concours TR. Mine has steel wheels. My engine compartment is a lot better in many ways than this one. Mine has been insured for $30,000 since I finished my restoration in 1990. I feel that mine is worth more than this one and I would never sell mine for under $30,000. But I would never sell mine. I'm the original owner.

He writes that the sills and floor pans were changed and painted.

Oddly he only shows one photo of the engine (from the good side?) and none under the TR.

Don Elliott
09-18-2009, 06:21 PM
And here is mine with the steel wheels.

Andrew Mace
09-18-2009, 06:53 PM
Oddly he only shows one photo of the engine (from the good side?) and none under the TR. Good news is that there is now a shot of the underside. Bad news is that it shows a chassis that looks to have been rather casually cleaned up before a quick repaint. It also shows some inexpensive "cherry bomb-style" mufflers...and mismatched tires on the rear!

The one wheel shot clearly shows a 48-spoke wire wheel. I don't have a problem with that, but I'm trying to figure out how or why he put "205/15" tires on those wheels!

Oh, and for $23,900 I'd expect a better-fitting boot lid, and....

TR3driver
09-18-2009, 07:40 PM
Looks pretty good, until you see the engine compartment.

A few nits:

The wedge-mount sidecurtains would only be correct for a very early 3A, but it appears to have the dash light rheostat, later style carbs, and later rearview mirror.

Gas cap is turned wrong.
Left side door mechanism is bent
Speedo doesn't return to zero
Engine was either overheated, or temp gauge doesn't work
Fuel gauge wrong
Double LTD studs on LH side also suggest mixed vintage parts.
The speedo cable should show in the under-car shot, where is it?

Of course there are lots of problems under the hood:
No battery hold-down
Radiator support missing
Radiator overflow tube missing
Carb vent pipe missing
Wrong generator (later replacement)
Incorrect fuel line from pump to carbs
Incorrect heater line from heater valve to firewall
Battery ground strap routed wrong
Could just be the photograph, but it appears to me that the thermostat housing is leaking

Way too much money, IMO, for so many visible flaws. My guess would be that the seller bought the car with the intention of making money on the "restoration", which means there will be lots more hidden flaws.

But that's just my opinion, worth only what it costs <<GRAEMLIN_URL>>/grin.gif

TR4
09-18-2009, 08:06 PM
It sure is pretty.

rustbucket
09-18-2009, 08:15 PM
FWIW, the car has been listed on and off on Ebay for over a year. Look at the other listings by the same seller, the seller is not an owner, it's a dealer. I can envision dealing with some sleazy leftover from Miami Vice...

"Hey Tubbs, should we take the Ferrari, or the Triumph to go make the drop?"

angelfj1
09-18-2009, 08:59 PM
GB: caveat emptor

There have been a number of Florida TR's listed on eBay, most of which have not been sold, but reappear occasionally. Just be cautious (like maybe wear a body condom).

DougF
09-19-2009, 06:44 AM
Brake lines appear to be painted. Engine block doesn't appear to have been painted. I also question the wiring harness.
For that money, I would expect much closer attention to details.

GBRandy
09-19-2009, 09:04 AM
Thanks everyone....especially Randall for the detailed list of issues.

I have seen this car on and off eBay and actually talked to the seller last spring. He buys and restores these things to re-sell. I am OK with that as long as the work is done right.

My issues is / was relates to the price versus what I am looking at. for $24000 it better be right. I am still learning the tiny details and the list Randall put out suggests I still am not certain on what I am looking at.

Shiny black paint, red interior, overdrive....makes a guy drool.

The underside looks like it was sprayed quick to look good and one wonders if the car is black becuase you can blast the underside and it all matches.....

It helps to have others look at a car and tear it apart for errors, omissions and flaws....I learn a ton that way.

Thanks for the input gentleman. I appreciate it.

Number_6
09-19-2009, 11:06 AM
Be very careful with this one. As others have said it looks like one that has been listed on and off for a couple of years on eBay.

TR3driver
09-19-2009, 02:37 PM
I am OK with that as long as the work is done right. But that is exactly the point : These cars are not worth what it costs to restore them "right". There are too many people restoring them as hobbies and then selling them for whatever reason ... to make money on a restoration you have to either start with a car that was very cheap for it's condition, or cut corners.

Mickey Richaud
09-19-2009, 02:44 PM
I am OK with that as long as the work is done right. But that is exactly the point : These cars are not worth what it costs to restore them "right". There are too many people restoring them as hobbies and then selling them for whatever reason ... to make money on a restoration you have to either start with a car that was very cheap for it's condition, or cut corners.

Yep - sold mine a few years ago under that scenario. I "lost" a bunch of money on it, but the experience I gleaned from it, and the fun I had restoring and driving it a few years can't be valued. Again, some of us aren't in it for profit.

NickMorgan
09-19-2009, 02:51 PM
I don't want to say anything libelous, but I would be very cautious. This seller seems to buy a lot of rough TRs and most of them seem to end up being repainted black. He has actually listed about eight this year and this one has only been on once before. That doesn't mean that the cars are no good, but there isn't a lot of profit in a TR3 if it is rebuilt properly.
This is also the seller who sold a TR250 to someone in Europe who posted on here once he received the car. He was very disappointed how much filler was in the car.

Andrew Mace
09-19-2009, 07:07 PM
But that is exactly the point : These cars are not worth what it costs to restore them "right". There are too many people restoring them as hobbies and then selling them for whatever reason ... to make money on a restoration you have to either start with a car that was very cheap for it's condition, or cut corners. :iagree:

...although there is one scenario where one might make quite a bit of money restoring something like a TR3: be the restorer but NOT the owner, and have the owner keep you supplied with negotiable checks or currencies. :devilgrin:

You might be able to do it as an owner/restorer, but likely as not you'll end up calculating at least your own hourly labor rate at something like $.008 ....

prb51
09-21-2009, 01:39 PM
His cars always 'look nice' and they are always painted black if he paints them. He has a great body man obvioulsy as black shows up issues and all car nuts know this (so does he).
How any body issues are dealt with is anyones guess, bondo, patch etc.
I do note on the cars he has shown underside pics of that there is always overspray where it should not be and his lift has black paint all over the lift arms from this practice.
I would never touch any old Brit car without an inspection by a pro if I couldn't be there to do it myself.
Remeber ' no apparent rust ' is legaleeze for ' you can't see it and neither could I '.....

Don Elliott
09-21-2009, 07:15 PM
If anyone paints all his restored TRs black, he can show any photo from any TR he might have ever re-done (or not) and you won't know be able to tell from that photo.

You have to see the car for yourself or find someone who is willing and honest to go look at it for you.

TR3driver
09-21-2009, 07:25 PM
You have to see the car for yourself or find someone who is willing and honest to go look at it for you. IMO, that is <span style="color: #CC0000"><span style="font-weight: bold">always</span></span> true, no matter how nice the photos look.

Been a few years ago now, but I made the mistake of making a deposit on a car through the VTR classifieds. Photos appeared to show about what I wanted, a 'barn find' in need of reassembly and freshening, but without major rust problems. When I got there to pick the car up, I discovered that one fender had literally rusted away from the rest of the car, and there were several rust holes larger than half dollars. I could have thrown a baseball into the spare tire well, and hit the rear axle! "No rust perforations" indeed!

Never did get my deposit back, either.