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Re: hi

Subject: Re: hi
From: "John T. Blair" <>
Date: Sun, 10 Oct 1999 09:38:30 -0400
At 02:16 AM 10/10/99 EDT, Casey Simpler wrote:
>Hi, my name is Casey Simpler, I am 16 years old, and live in Longview Texas, 
>and just saw a Bricklin for the first time.  I love these cars, and I want
>purchase one. 


Glad to see a young man interested in these cars!!!!  We need young blood
in the club and coming into the car hobby.

>1.  Are Bricklins somewhat reliable?  This will be my only car and I need 
>something that will not break down very often.

They are as reliable as any other used car, and a reliable as YOU make it.
Keep in mind when you buy a used car, you are buying someone elses problems.
This means a couple of things: 
1. You will need a mechanic that you can trust.  To find the best mechainc 
   in your area look in a mirror!  You are the only one that cares!  If you
   don't have any tools, or any mech. knowledge now is the time to start 
2. If you do your own work, you can look at doing a job right since all you
   are paying for is parts.  In other words, if you are going to put a new
   caliper on the right front wheel, get 2 and do both wheels,  If you need
   to change the dist. cap, replace the cap, button and plug wires, etc.
   This will help make the car MORE reilable.  If you only do the min.
   to fix the initial problem, it will surface in a short time do to failure
   of another part in the same system.
3. If you don't do your own work, expect to spend about $500 everytime you
   take it to the shop.  If you only have to have the car worked on a couple
   of times a year, it is cheaper then payments on a new car.

>2. Why is the mileage so low on all of the cars for sale in Classifieds?

    A lot of people purchase them, and then for one reason or another had
problems with the car and parked them.  Some people were speculating, hoping
the car's value would skyrocket.  But NOT all Bricklins have low milage.
In many cases a low milage car can be worse than a high milage car.  A high
milage car has been driven and many of the problems worked out.  The low 
milage car was parked because of a problem and that problem still exists.

>3. How many miles should I try to find one with?  I am very concerned with 
>the price(under $6k-$7k).

    The price you pay will depend on several things, NOT just the milage:
over all condition, repaires needed.  If the car does NOT have air doors,
deduct $1500 to do the conversion.  You can get a driver in your price
range.  The next question is how long do you want to keep it?  You may
drive it for several years, then have to restore the car, or start by 
restoring the car and then driving it.  I would suggest that you drive the
car for at least 1 year if you can.  You will need the memories to help 
you over the rough spots during the restoration.  I've never driven mine,
and I've owned it since 88, been restoring it since 95.

>4.  What kind of mileage do they get?  I will be driving around town alot.  
>And will probably be putting quite a few miles on it.

Approx. 18 mpg.  If you truely want a driver, you can increase this some by
putting in a hotter cam, a better carb, a new rear end, and or and AOD

>5. Would you recommend a Bricklin as a good daily driver? 

I hope so!  I'm planning that for mine.  For a young fellow like yourself,
you can figure that you will be in a couple of accidents as your driving
skill are honed.  The Brick. is a VERY safe car.  You can't ask for much
more in safety.  The area you are going to have problems is getting insurance.

>6. What are the insurance rates on them?  I will be paying the insurance,
>I will definately want full coverage.

It will be pretty expensive because of your age.  My guess based on my #1 son
is about $1500 or so a year!  Not trying to discourage you, but you might want
to think about only driving your parents car and be on their policy for a 
couple of years.  This will reduce the cost.  But if you have 3 drivers and
3 cars, then one of the cars will be "assigned" to as a full time driver and
your rates will go through the roof.  When my son started driving, my rates
went for $450 a year for my wife and I on 2 cars to over $900 a year for my
son to "occasionally" drive either of our cars.  Good grades is a real plus.
If you are an honor student you usually get a nice discount.  For my son
it was $125 a year!  After 2 years, you are supposed to get a small break
based on your driving record.

As to "full coverage" this is a missnomer, if you are hit (say only requiring
 a new fender - $400ish) the insurance co. is going to want to total the
Currently it is very difficult to get insurance of an older car for what it
worth.  Insurance companies have what they call "Actual Cash Value"
This means they don't care what you have in the car,  they go by the worth in 
the Blue Book.  Unfortunately, the Bricklin probably hasn't been listed since 
77 and the ins. co. will tell you that ANY car that is 25 years old isn't
more than $200!  I've published an article about insurance companies in the 
last Brickline (quarterly magazine for the club - Bricklin International - 
which I suggest you join).  I'm hoping to do at least one more.  I'm also in 
the process of trying to find insurance for my car.  When it is on the
road, I 
will have about $15,000 in parts for the restoration, and 1500 hours
working on 
it.  I will value the car around $16,000.

>7.  Is there anything else I should know about them?

Read the FAQ on the web page.  Try to find someone in your area with one.
Where do you live?  I might be able to help you find one in your area.  As
pointed questions as you can think of them.  General questions like those
here are hard to answer as they cover a lot of ground.  For long conversations
about things, call someone that owns one.  You can get more info quicker on
the phone than here on the net.

Hope this has helped Casey.  Don't give up the dream.  You can get one, it
can be made reliable.  If you do the work, you'll learn a lot, generate some
skills and have fun and meet some nice people.


John T. Blair  WA4OHZ          email:
Va. Beach, Va                  Phone:  (757) 495-8229

              48 TR1800    65 Morgan 4/4 Series V (B1109)
71 Saab Sonett III (71500840)    75 Bricklin SV1 (0887)    77 Spitfire


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