[DML] Re: Drive the dream?
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[DML] Re: Drive the dream?

Let me tell you an abridged version of my DeLorean purchase 2 years
ago when I was 28. I currently own an August '81 (3231) auto. I had
desire to own a DeLorean for many years and like you couldn't fathom
the idea of actually owning one until much later in my life. My
brother for Christmas one year surprised me with the re-printed
Stainless Steel Illusion book which rekindled my fire and started me
searching the bay area Craigslist. I knew I was going to be rewarded
with a hefty tax return and wanted to see what the market was like.
Now, I'm a fairly handy guy. I'd managed to restore a VW beetle from
the ground up by myself and have always maintained and repaired my own
vehicles (Fords, mainly.) At this point I had a functional set of
tools (including air tools) and a garage. 

I happened across this particular DMC on CL with the asking price of
$10,000. The vehicle had not been started or driven since 1985. It had
been stored indoors (thankfully) but had within the past 6 months of
my acquisition been moved outdoors into a parking lot. The car was
completely original save for the Craig stereo which was missing. The
windshield was cracked and at one point the passenger main window had
been broken when some kids wanted to steal said Craig stereo. The
passenger side glass had been replaced by a local shop, but the
toolbooth window was off the track. Both door hydraulics were shot and
the driver's door latch was jammed. The passenger door handle was
snapped off, and the headliners were toast. Other than that, the
interior was in good shape save for some mildew. I don't think anyone
had been in the car for over a year when I got there. The deciding
factors were the mileage - 4,858.9 original and the fact that the body
was almost flawless; maybe a small ding or 2 on the hood. I had to
have it.

I had read a few articles on DMCNEWS about what to look for with frame
rust and whatnot, but my knowledge of the DeLorean mechanicals stopped
at this point and I was only relying on my own collective automotive
skills. Regardless, It was love at first sight. Some negotiations and
I handed over $7,500 for the vehicle and brought it home on a rented
car trailer one sunny February afternoon.

Since this is an abridged version of my story, let me outline what the
car ended up needing to give me a safe reliable daily driver. Aside from
the windshield, I purchased the parts from the various DeLorean
vendors and did
all the labor myself in my garage. All in all, I would estimate that I
spent close to 40 hours of time on the following project list.

* new windshield
* full tuneup (plugs, wires, cap, rotor, air filter, fuel filter, oil
* Auto trans flush, filter, gasket.
* entire fuel system. (18 years of sitting produced some lovely
substance in the fuel system) New fuel pump, special-T fuel baffle
kit, fuel accumulator (crow's foot sockets a necessity) fuel
distributor (used from a junkyard volvo = $26 - new DMC = $400+ ) Fuel
injectors (from said junkyard volvo) - warm up regulator.
* all new radiator hoses
* Stainless header bottle
* all of the factory DMC suspension recalls
* all new electrical relays
* all new fuses
* metal door handles
* optima battery
* LockZilla (with the wireless keyfob)
* Special-T fan fix 2X2
* all new door, louver, hood struts
* Door to roof seals
* replacement trip odo reset shaft
* Rebuilt both window motors (almost had to replace both)
* Install TOBY trailing arm bolts
* Pioneer cd headunit
* trunk release cable
* bleed brake system
* evacuate, and charge AC system with R-12
* headliners
* new tires all around - GT qualifiers - love them.
* re-solder taillight boards
* rebuild AT trans computer and relocate to engine compartment - Note,
this was accomplished with $5 in electronic components and have
suffered no further ill effects.

All in all, This encompases about $5,000 worth of parts and none of it
is labor. If you had to factor labor in, I could see all of that list
costing close to $10-12k. Again the key is whether or not you have
tools and knowledge to do labor yourself. Some of those items took
hours and hours (figuring out the tricks to the toolbooth windows for
example.) Working with the doors above you is tough. I had those doors
apart for weeks at a time. 

Now, most of the things on that list are absolutely necesary to create
a SAFE and reliable vehicle that you can drive. If you have the
talent, patience, and a place to keep her, I say go for it! I hope
this info helps

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