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Offline tjm73

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Buying a Pinto
« on: May 21, 2014, 10:11:08 PM »
So I recently went and took a look at this little gem. It's a 1973 Runabout hatchback. It's a recent barn escapee that hadn't seen the sun in over 30 years until just a couple days ago. She's wounded, but the rest of it is so clean and rust free it's worth repairing. Needs a quarter, a taillight panel, a new hatch, a rear bumper, and a rear valence. It's only got 56,247 miles. It's red and has a black interior that is in pretty nice condition except for the head liner has a couple small holes in it and the plastic around the rear wheel well and hatch area is broken from the accident. The current owner has a hatch and a couple little things for it.

The story goes it was hit back in the mid/late 70's and the owner didn't want to fix it. So the guy I'm buying it from bought it with the intention of fixing it and putting a V8 in it. He put it in his horse barn and never got around to it. He ended up getting into Harley's (he has 5, couple real nice ones too) and doesn't have the time or interest to do the Pinto now. I have the interest, the time and the space in my pole barn to do it. So I agreed to buy it.

The plan for the car is several fold. First, I have to repair the damage to the rear drivers side quarter. So the search for the needed parts begins with that. Second, That repair will entail mini-tubbing the car for larger wheels & tires. Third, I want to address the design flaw I feel all Pintos and Mustang II's suffer from. The front axle center line is too far rearward. It needs to be moved forward about 4 inches. In doing this, I will update the front suspension to the '74-up Mustang II/Pinto suspension. It will allow the use of easily obtained suspension parts. Narrow control arms, coil over suspension, etc...  I will also add a roll bar. This will address the chassis. Once the chassis is complete, I will move on to the drive train.

The current plan is the car will get a low buck, low tech GT-40P iron headed 302 with a blow-through carb single turbo mounted on the passenger side to allow for a passanger side exhaust discharge. It simplifies plumbing (as opposed to two turbos) as well as eliminating exhaust, steering, and master cylinder space issues.

A nice bonus is it adds power to the engine. I am a believer in higher compression with low boost set ups. You can build a low compression engine and pump a lot of boost. But this is more of a race engine method since off idle and low rpm response isn't as importent at the track with transbrakes and such because off idle isn't really much of a concern. Besides it makes the engine a little doggy on the street. Upping the engine compression ratio increases throttle response and engine effieciency on and off boost. It makes it more resposive on the mean streets and you get more power from less boost.

Here's some pictures.

The good..




The bad...




Worst case scenario once I get it home is I can't find the parts to put it back together. In that case, I will likely part it out so she can live on as a donor. But hopefully I can put her back together.

Offline jeremysdad

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2014, 10:51:54 PM »
No. Find another one, if you want one. That's a 'parts car' to us.

Offline tjm73

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2014, 09:31:01 AM »
I see you are a founding member. No offense, but I find it hard to believe you speak for everyone. You might consider it a parts car. I don't. Here's why.

First, you haven't seen the damage first hand as I have. It's actually not as bad as it looks.

Second, my brother, who ran my father's body shop for 20+ years and is a crash estimator by trade, estimates about a month of weekends to repair and get it to the point it's ready to be painted. I trust his opinion on the car.

Third, the guy I am buying it from is a body shop manager (actually my brother's boss) for a major dealer in my area. He knows it's repairable without much fuss. That's why he stashed it away for over 30 years as a future project.

Fourth, seeing as the car is essentially going to be back-halved this damage is rather inconsequentia l.

Fifth, you don't know what I'm paying for the car. It's cheap enough to seriously consider fixing.

So rather than condemn the car from Tennessee, sit back and wait to see what I actually do with it. I may well decide to part it out. That decision is not yet made. I still need to bring it home, put it in my barn to get it up on jack stands and inspect it in greater detail.

Offline Pinto5.0

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2014, 11:07:39 AM »
Having access to cheap, quality body repair puts you in a position 99% of us will never know. If you can save it by all means do so. I hate to see them parted out when they are clean.
 
Just understand that to the average Pinto guy like me there are $500-1000 in parts needed & $2500-5000 in bodyshop expenses to put that car back on the road. A clean, low mileage Pinto that needs nothing can be had for what I'd spend paying a shop to do the repair & paint on that car.
 
 It's unfortunate but my reality & many others on here I'm sure is that finding a clean shell for under $1000, painting it ourselves for a few hundred bucks or Maaco if there's a sale & stripping that car for parts to assemble it would be our only viable option.
 
I'm trying to find a shop to hang an NOS quarter on my 71 & so far I've been either ignored or quoted prices that are double the $600 purchase price of the car. All I want is the quarter hung & roughed in. I can finish it & paint it myself. Even at that I'll spend $2500 by the time it's painted which is enough to buy a pretty nice running, driving Pinto.
 
I envy your access to cheap body/paint work. If I was in your shoes I wouldn't have 4 cars at my house needing painted. 
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Offline dga57

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2014, 11:21:06 AM »
I see you are a founding member. No offense, but I find it hard to believe you speak for everyone. You might consider it a parts car. I don't. Here's why.

First, you haven't seen the damage first hand as I have. It's actually not as bad as it looks.

Second, my brother, who ran my father's body shop for 20+ years and is a crash estimator by trade, estimates about a month of weekends to repair and get it to the point it's ready to be painted. I trust his opinion on the car.

Third, the guy I am buying it from is a body shop manager (actually my brother's boss) for a major dealer in my area. He knows it's repairable without much fuss. That's why he stashed it away for over 30 years as a future project.

Fourth, seeing as the car is essentially going to be back-halved this damage is rather inconsequentia l.

Fifth, you don't know what I'm paying for the car. It's cheap enough to seriously consider fixing.

So rather than condemn the car from Tennessee, sit back and wait to see what I actually do with it. I may well decide to part it out. That decision is not yet made. I still need to bring it home, put it in my barn to get it up on jack stands and inspect it in greater detail.


I agree wholeheartedly!  The damage isn't all that bad, really... especially since you have connections in the collision repair business!  To have a clean, rust-free, 56K mile '73 Pinto, I'd say the repair work is well worth the investment!  Have fun with your project!

Dwayne :)
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Offline Pintosopher

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2014, 11:45:05 AM »
Although we can agree it's (Just) a Pinto, keep in mind some basic history. Back in the late 50's and early 60's a rusty Porsche Speedster or Cabriolet would not be worth a full collision repair and repaint. Now with classic values approaching $600K for the rare versions when completed, and even more for the Carrera Furhmann 4 cam versions , It's not too much to understand that there are now metal fab shops building all unibody pieces for these cars. Once the market develops, Historical cars are worth the cost to restore and Rebuild.  Even BMW has almost 90 % of the parts in the Plant in Germany to complete a 1972 2002 tii sedan.  Labor of love aside, Play the long game. Most who do will win out! ;D

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  Wishing I had bought the C&D Imsa Pinto racer ,even when it was listed at 30K  :o
Yes, it is possible to study and become a master of Pintosophy.. Not a religion , nothing less than a life quest for non conformity and rational thought. What Horse did you ride in on?

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Offline dick1172762

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2014, 04:18:53 PM »
No. Find another one, if you want one. That's a 'parts car' to us.
      I agree 100%.  (FIRST)Because the early (71/73) Pintos do not have a rear sub frame, when hit as hard as this one has been hit, the car will be warped and fixing it will be a chore.  (SECOND)Parts are very hard to find for an early Pinto like the rear bumper and valance panel.  (THIRD)Engine parts are even harder to find for a 2.0L engine.  Get your self a 74/80 Pinto and put all the good interior parts in it.  I've done what your trying to do, and by the time its fixed, you'll hate the sight of it.
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Offline cannonball

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2014, 01:18:47 PM »
      I agree 100%.  (FIRST)Because the early (71/73) Pintos do not have a rear sub frame, when hit as hard as this one has been hit, the car will be warped and fixing it will be a chore.  (SECOND)Parts are very hard to find for an early Pinto like the rear bumper and valance panel.  (THIRD)Engine parts are even harder to find for a 2.0L engine.  Get your self a 74/80 Pinto and put all the good interior parts in it.  I've done what your trying to do, and by the time its fixed, you'll hate the sight of it.

so do later pinto,s have rear chassis legs i was very surprised when i looked under my 71 and its just a floor pan back from the front rails no wonder they folded on impact,
also there is the most massive amount of parts available to super tune the 2,.0 ohc mtr over here in england its an engine that has been used in all sorts of race situations over here you can get aolmost 22hp from it a great torquay rev happy engine simple buy from us like we buy v8 stuff from you boys

Offline tjm73

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2014, 12:02:15 PM »
      I agree 100%.  (FIRST)Because the early (71/73) Pintos do not have a rear sub frame, when hit as hard as this one has been hit, the car will be warped and fixing it will be a chore.

First, you haven't seen the damage first hand as I have. It's actually not as bad as it looks.

Fourth, seeing as the car is essentially going to be back-halved this damage is rather inconsequentia l.

Initial inspection is the car is otherwise strait. We'll see once home. Perhaps next weekend. Back-halved means who cars about no rear sub-frame rails. The back-halving will add them.

Offline Pinto5.0

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #9 on: May 29, 2014, 09:41:18 AM »
Tubbing it solves 95% of potential issues if there is damage out back. At that point you just need to hand a quarter & tail panel & make it one color.
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Offline tjm73

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2014, 09:49:40 PM »
She's home!

Offline dga57

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #11 on: June 18, 2014, 11:54:15 PM »
Be sure to keep us updated on your progress!
 
Dwayne :)
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Offline dianne

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #12 on: June 19, 2014, 08:12:23 AM »
Be sure to keep us updated on your progress!
 
Dwayne :)

Yeah, I want to see pictures of the car as it undergoes restoration!
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Offline 74 PintoWagon

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #13 on: June 19, 2014, 08:15:41 AM »
Yeah, I want to see pictures of the car as it undergoes restoration!
Ditto that..
Art
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Offline bbobcat75

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #14 on: June 19, 2014, 10:13:55 AM »
more damage then I would be willing to work with but time and money are my issues!! at the end its Your Decision!!    I for one would find another clean shell and do a complete swap!! and sell that shell to another for a demo or race car!  just my 2 cents!!
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Offline 74 PintoWagon

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #15 on: June 19, 2014, 11:18:15 AM »
Guy I used to work with did body work on the side and he was an artist, he'd look at that and say "ah, piece a cake".. LOL..
Art
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Offline dga57

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #16 on: June 19, 2014, 07:16:36 PM »
I'm not a professional, but I HAVE done some bodywork in my day and the car really isn't that bad.  There are going to be a few parts that need to be rounded up, but it's not really a big job.  I think he's going to end up with a very nice little car!


Dwayne :)
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Offline 74 PintoWagon

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #17 on: June 19, 2014, 09:31:50 PM »
I wouldn't doubt it, it is a learning curve though..
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Offline dga57

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #18 on: June 20, 2014, 12:53:43 AM »
I wouldn't doubt it, it is a learning curve though..

True... but don't forget, he has body shop connections! 

Dwayne :)
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Offline 74 PintoWagon

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #19 on: June 20, 2014, 07:30:44 AM »
True... but don't forget, he has body shop connections! 

Dwayne :)
Yeah, and that makes things even easier..
Art
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Offline bbobcat75

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #20 on: June 20, 2014, 07:38:44 AM »
the only thing I don't understand is that its a quote low mileage car - and want to keep as - but yet going to mini tub the car?! to go thru all that work I would find a way!!!!! better shell and start off with good! strong steel!!   but good luck!!    my dad always told me your can polish a turd!! but it will always still be a turd!!! 
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Offline tjm73

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #21 on: June 20, 2014, 11:23:40 AM »
I never said it was low mileage. Just that it had only 56K-ish. I also never said I was going to restore it to stock. I am going to pull out the damage and tub it. So an otherwise solid but crunched slightly car is perfect to start with.

Let's shine a light on a couple things. The car rolls like it's a year old. Brakes are not seized to the drums/discs. after sitting in a barn since '79. Hard to believe. When we went to roll it off the trailer into my pole barn I said to my brother how are we gonna stop this thing before it hits Dad's trailer? And he said push the brake pedal and see if we have brakes. It still had brakes. Bottoms of the doors are rust free. Engine compartment is rust free. Interior is 95% perfect. All the glass is perfect.

The bottom of this car is so clean that the factory gas tank (at least I believe it to be the OE) is still in it and still has the US Steel markings on it. The inner rear wheel well housing is virtually undamaged despite the mashed appearance of the outer quarter. A come along and a couple chains will straighten it out and a new quarter will make it all better.

A few guys have passed judgment on the car with nothing but a couple quick shots I've thrown up. If you don't like it or think it's worth doing anything with.... please move along and enjoy another thread.

I am hoping to wash it this weekend and get it up on a set of jack stands I have to take more/better pics of it.

Offline chrisf1219

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #22 on: June 20, 2014, 12:47:48 PM »
hello tjm73 while some of us look at that as too much work( myself included) and using it as a parts car you see it as a good start. for most us us the cost of a body shop fix would be too costly.since you wish to tub it cutting up the back end might not be hard for you cause you have use of a body shop. good luck on your car. chris ps what state are you in?
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Offline tjm73

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #23 on: June 20, 2014, 02:03:20 PM »
I'm in New York. An hour or so East of the Buffalo end near Rochester.

Yes, if I didn't have the knowledge and experience of my brother (over 20 years in auto body) and his willingness to help me, this would be out of my reach as it sits.

While I don't have access to a body shop per say, I can turn part of my pole barn into a makeshift body shop when the time comes.

Offline dga57

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #24 on: June 20, 2014, 02:09:48 PM »
Well, for whatever it's worth, I totally believe in this project.  Personally, I would rather see it restored to stock, but it's your car and your decision... I'm just happy that it is being saved.  Much, much, much too nice a car to be parted out.  I wish you the best of luck in this endeavor and am looking forward to seeing your progress!


Dwayne :)
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Offline Reeves1

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #25 on: June 20, 2014, 09:21:21 PM »
Ugly Yellow is in much worse shape & I'm "fixing" it.

Go for it !

Offline blupinto

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #26 on: June 21, 2014, 08:58:31 PM »
I'm with you, tjm! I'd rather see it saved than stripped. I also have to agree with Dwayne... I like stock better. All you can do is follow your heart. It's so refreshing to see somebody believe in a car enough to bring her back to life. I wish you the very best of luck! And no, your car is NOT a turd.

One can never have too many Pintos!

Offline tjm73

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #27 on: June 21, 2014, 10:32:27 PM »
Lots of people would argue that all Pintos are turds. I guess I like cars that are turds then.

I like the shape of the Pinto, the simplicity, the fact they are rear wheel drive, and that they are lightweight.

On another note...... I measured my engine compartment last night out of curiosity.

Top of Engine Compartment = ~38.5" Max Width
Frame Rail (in to in) = ~25" at widest, ~24" at narrowest
Bottom of Oil Pan to Top of Air Cleaner = ~24"
Firewall to Radiator Support = ~29"

I will have a few parts that eventually will end up for sale. Like, for example, a 52K mile 2.0L with 4 speed and all the front suspension parts.

Offline Reeves1

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #28 on: June 22, 2014, 05:20:17 AM »
Quote
all the front suspension parts.

?

Only part I can think of that is changed for V8s would be the springs.
Plus rotor, calipers & hubs if using the Wilwood kit.
What plans have you ?

Offline tjm73

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Re: Buying a Pinto
« Reply #29 on: June 22, 2014, 10:11:28 AM »
I plan to cut the entire front suspension out, move the axle center line forward about 4-6" and replace it with '74-80 parts so I can buy narrow control arms and drop spindles. The later front end parts are just much better supported in the aftermarket.