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Thread: 1969 sprite - good deal??

Discuss the Austin Healey Sprite and the MG Midget. Two different but similar cars sometimes referred to collectively as the Spridget.

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    Member jmayzer's Avatar
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    1969 sprite - good deal??

    hey guys

    found a 1969 sprite for sale and well...how about i just post the craigslist link:

    https://pennstate.craigslist.org/cto/4539063289.html

    i'm still waiting on more photos from the seller greg (anyone on here know him?) but i just wanted to see if anyone thought right off the bat if this seems like a good deal. it does to me from the research i've done so far but i'm definitely still the new guy in the spridget game

    if i end up going to look at it, what are key points to watch out for? or even better, anyone on here in the williamsport pa area want to tag along/meet up with me there to look?

    jake

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    Luke Skywalker Gerard's Avatar
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    I have a far better '68 one for sale, but I'm on the west coast.
    Gerard
    http://gerardsgarage.com/
    1960 Bugeye Vintage Racer #50
    1960 Bugeye (partially restored)
    1960 Morris Minor Pickup
    1964 Morris Minor 4 dr Saloon
    1970 Austin Mini (for sale)
    1946 Austin 10


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    Jedi Warrior 58Custom's Avatar
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    Rust and bondo covering up rust is #1. Appears to be an original red car, look for spots that appear better than other areas which might indicate newer paint (possible repair). Check the floor pans for rust and the forward spring mounts. also the battery tray is frequently corroded so check that. It's missing the smog pump, look for other modifications.

    If you have never driven a Spridget before be aware that they have straight cut first and reverse gears without synchros and that they howl a bit when using them but that 2nd, 3rd and 4th are "normal" and should operate smoothly and relatively quietly. It is a small unibody car and you will hear road noise but listen for grinding or whining noises when moving. Is the electrical in good shape and not modified? Things like added relays for the headlights is cool if done correctly but wads of wires hanging down from the dash is not. Might want to bring a voltmeter to check the charging sitch.

    Drive straight and true? Any play in the steering? How is the top? Why the pliers in the passenger seat? Is that a boot behind the seats? At the price it should be decent. Gauges work? How does the engine run? Heater core good? Heater blower work? Wipers? Stalk switches OK? Turn signals cancel normally cuz those things break?

    $4600? Better be in good running shape with a good body and everything working. If that is the case, might just be a pretty good deal.

    I wonder what that pipe looking thing is next to the vent tube next to the radiator.
    ____________________
    1969 MG Midget, A15, 5 speed

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    Obi Wan
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    I think that is a pretty fair price for this area if the car is straight and no major rust issues. I bought my '69 last year in New Market, MD and paid more than that for a car in what appears to be similar condition. I'm over in Damascus, MD, out I-70 to Exit 68, if you want to get a look/see at my '69 so you have some frame of reference when you check this one out.

    Edit: Even though I paid more, I also got a pretty fair cache of spare parts and technical support from the seller to go along with the car.

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    Yoda
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    Typical rust area's to examine very closely are the bottom of the A post, front bottom of the rocker's,behind the rear wheels, over the top of the rear wheel's and the floors. Bring a piece of cardboard or wear old clothes so that you can crawl under it and look it over carefully.

    To me, any rust is a deal killer...especially at that price. Then, of course check out the mechanical's.

    Kurt.
    65,66 Midget
    57 Berkeley, MGA
    Working on quality rather than quantity

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    Member jmayzer's Avatar
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    gents,

    heres an update: more photos from the seller.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Yoda
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    Not good pictures of where the rust normally occurs. I forgot a typical spot and that is the front lip of the hood. Not a really good picture but I would suspect a spot to the right of that photo. I'll bet the steering wheel is cracked under the cover. Perhaps, I'm too cynical. The only way to really know is a close up look but it still seems a little high priced even if perfect. Take a look at E-bay past sales to get an idea.

    Kurt.
    65,66 Midget
    57 Berkeley, MGA
    Working on quality rather than quantity

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    Obi Wan
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    I think if the car is sorted out well mechanically, the price does not seem unreasonable. It's not perfect by a long shot, but would still make a fun driver, again, if it is good mechanical condition.

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    Obi Wan Sarastro's Avatar
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    The pictures really aren't good enough to evaluate it, but I'd still go out on a limb and guess that it's priced about right, as long as there are no surprises.
    Steve Maas
    1966 Triumph TR4A, undergoing restoration: http://www.nonlintec.com/tr4a
    1952 MG TD, restoration completed 2014, sold 2016: http://www.nonlintec.com/mgtd
    1960 Austin-Healey "Bugeye" Sprite, sold 2010: http://www.nonlintec.com/sprite
    1967 Porsche 912: http://www.nonlintec.com/porsche

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    Yoda
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    On second thought I guess I have to agree that the price probably isn't bad. Figuring where its at in the country I'm just not expecting a car without rust problem's.

    Kurt.
    65,66 Midget
    57 Berkeley, MGA
    Working on quality rather than quantity

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    Luke Skywalker Gerard's Avatar
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    Quote Originally Posted by nomad View Post
    On second thought I guess I have to agree that the price probably isn't bad. Figuring where its at in the country I'm just not expecting a car without rust problem's.

    Kurt.
    I agree, none of the problem areas are shown, and not much to be seen under the bonnet, boot and interior. I'm pretty sure that's a dash cap on the dash too.
    Gerard
    http://gerardsgarage.com/
    1960 Bugeye Vintage Racer #50
    1960 Bugeye (partially restored)
    1960 Morris Minor Pickup
    1964 Morris Minor 4 dr Saloon
    1970 Austin Mini (for sale)
    1946 Austin 10


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    Yoda Jim_Gruber's Avatar
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    Jack up the front and shake the wheels. See back of Moss Catalog. You're trying to see how tight the front end is. Ask if Front Suspension has even been rebuilt and get a description of what was done. Were fulcrum pins or Kingpins replaced? Shocks replaced. Getting Front Suspension right typically $600-$1,000 to get it dialed in right, shocks replaced, major suspension kit, etc. After engine / tranny that will be you next expense to do it right.
    Jim Gruber - Tampa/Riverview FL
    Bugsy I - '68 Sprite w BE Bonnet - Gone but not forgotten
    Bugsy IV - '60 Bugeye - 1,275+.040 and a 5-Speed - CA Car - 2nd Owner from new -

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    Obi Wan
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    Jmayzer came out to check out Baby Blue this morning, since my Sprite is a '69, too, and I could show him the trouble spots that everyone here described. Even if the one he's looking at right now doesn't work out for him, after letting him take a quick spin Baby Blue, I have no doubt that we'll have another Spridget owner in our midst. These cars will get you addicted faster than any illegal substance.

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    Member jmayzer's Avatar
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    well gents, it fell through. went up and met with the guy today and this car was in even better condition than the photos showed. a lot of surface rust and the paint would definitely need some work but mechanically totally solid. a JOY to drive. just couldn't work the guy down to a price that i could afford. told him to keep in touch of course if he reconsiders. i'm the closest he's gotten to selling it yet. but no fret here! i'm not giving up...i'll get my hands on one of these little roadsters eventually. cheers.

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    Yoda HealeyRick's Avatar
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    Just be aware that finding a never rusted Spridget on the East Coast is rare and paying more for one initially will be cheaper than all the rust repair you'll have to pay for on a car with a lower buy-in.
    Rick

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    Yoda Jim_Gruber's Avatar
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    I sold my '68 Sprite with a BE Bonnet, all mechanicals thoroughly sorted, Miata Seats, a 1098, Rib Case, fair paint, but sound mechanically for close to that price range 18 months ago. That is not an unrealistic price for a Spridget as Rick has stated on the East Coast/ You may want to rethink on that one.
    Jim Gruber - Tampa/Riverview FL
    Bugsy I - '68 Sprite w BE Bonnet - Gone but not forgotten
    Bugsy IV - '60 Bugeye - 1,275+.040 and a 5-Speed - CA Car - 2nd Owner from new -

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    Jedi Warrior CLEAH's Avatar
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    Jake, I certainly understand if it is an affordability issue, but box Sprites are getting a lot more respect and prices are only going up, albeit not at the rate of Mk 1 Sprites. Just something to consider. Fun drive, wasn't it?
    Hugh
    1965 BJ8
    1958 AN5


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    Member jmayzer's Avatar
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    Re: 1969 sprite - good deal??

    SO much fun, hugh!!

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