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Advice on getting quotes for restoration

  • 18-04-2018 5:21pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 793 ✭✭✭ metricspaces


    I have a 1988 Toyota Starlet EP71 that has a fair bit of rust and I am considering getting it completely restored. I am looking for advice on what I should check for when getting quotes.

    Some of the things I have thought of so far, but any suggestions from people with experience of restores would be great!
    • Are rusted panels removed completely, or corrosion is just cut back to good metal and plates welded in
    • Is engine taken out
    • Is the complete car resprayed, or just the outside
    • Is car sealed underneath afterwards
    • How are panels treated before being resprayed (sandblasted, anti-corrosion paint applied)
    • How many years warranty on rust reappearing

    The interior of the car is perfect, and it is just restoring the body that I had thought of. But should I also be looking at other things like:
    • Engine cleaned up
    • Powder coating components


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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,156 ✭✭✭ w124man


    Are rusted panels removed completely, or corrosion is just cut back to good metal and plates welded in


    Depends on the panel and how much money you have!


    Is engine taken out


    If it needs to be to do work around it


    Is the complete car resprayed, or just the outside


    Depends on the work being done and how much money you have.


    Is car sealed underneath afterwards


    Yes if you want it undersealed and you have the money


    How are panels treated before being resprayed (sandblasted, anti-corrosion paint applied)


    Depends on the panel and the work being done. As for the paint used, it depends on the size of your wallet.


    How many years warranty on rust reappearing


    You are having a laugh aren't you?


    What's your budget? Cheap jobs are just that, cheap. Paint is expensive and quality paint jobs cost money. Panels are expensive and so is labour so be prepared.


  • Registered Users Posts: 793 ✭✭✭ metricspaces


    Thanks for the reply. Maybe I wasn't clear. It wasn't that I was looking for answer on here to those questions. I've never gotten a car reconditioned so I'm wondering what I should expect to be done so I can ask a garage that quotes me if it includes these things.

    I understand it depends on how much you're willing to spends. I'm wondering what's should be done for the basic minimum. And then what options are if i want to spend more.

    No. Not having a laugh about the warranty. One garage I got a quote from already told me the number of years warranty they would cover on rust reappearing.


  • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 4,749 Mod ✭✭✭✭ kadman


    Restorations are expensive procedures , and many a mans wallet failed to recover

    and was deemed to be terminal way before the finish line.

    Spend plenty of time researching from clubs ect, as to what the likely outcome

    would be on a venture. Rare cars may mean rarity of panels, which means further

    open wallet surgery.


  • Registered Users Posts: 793 ✭✭✭ metricspaces


    Thanks. Yes that makes sense to research as much as possible before diving in. If anyone has any pointers on my questions above that would be helpful.

    I'm hoping there are a few people on here who restore cars or have gotten their car restored and can give me some guidance.


  • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 4,749 Mod ✭✭✭✭ kadman


    Check your available budget, against what is available fully restored.

    You might buy cheaper than what it costs to have one restored.

    Panels could run into 1000's before any rust has been cut out. Some

    marques are just a money pit. And if you have to ask how expensive it is

    to get a panel handmade, then you are probably going to faint when you are given the price.

    Resto work is expensive, and then some.


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  • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 4,749 Mod ✭✭✭✭ kadman


    I have a 1988 Toyota Starlet EP71 that has a fair bit of rust and I am considering getting it completely restored. I am looking for advice on what I should check for when getting quotes.

    Some of the things I have thought of so far, but any suggestions from people with experience of restores would be great!
      [*]Are rusted panels removed completely, or corrosion is just cut back to good metal and plates welded in.

      Either, depends on budget. Whether you use a full panel, or a piece of one, you are still paying for a full panel.

      [*]Is engine taken out

      Probably will, to get proper access, for any fabwork, and rust prevention treatment in sections.

      [*]Is the complete car resprayed, or just the outside

      depends on your needs and budget.

      [*]Is car sealed underneath afterwards.

      Should be stripped, inspected and resealed. Depends on budget.


      [*]How are panels treated before being resprayed (sandblasted, anti-corrosion paint applied)

      List of rustproofing materials is too long, but again most of this depends on how deep your pockets are, and the overall brief.

      [*]How many years warranty on rust reappearing

      Until you get as far as the gate. You are never, ever going to get a claim here, at all.




      The interior of the car is perfect, and it is just restoring the body that I had thought of. But should I also be looking at other things like:
      • Engine cleaned up
      • Powder coating components

      Basically what you have already been told. Its a damn expensive thing to pay for.


    • Registered Users Posts: 793 ✭✭✭ metricspaces


      Thanks. I think if I'm going to the effort/expense of refurb then it makes no sense to leave engine in I think?

      Quotes I'm getting are 3-4k so far. They cover
      * Engine out, doors off, interior out
      * Cut out any corrosion and weld in pieces (there's only 6 bad spots)
      * Apply anti-corrosion paint (no idea what kind)
      * Full respray

      The car still has factory seal underneath and it looks all good when I had it up on ramp. What would be the costs of stripping away the seal and reapplying?

      Regards powder coating. Where would you start and what would be priority? I'm thinking engine & wheel hubs to start as they're visible...but what next?


    • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 4,749 Mod ✭✭✭✭ kadman


      Sounds way too cheap.

      You need to see at least 3 previous cars done, and talk to the owners.

      "only 6 bad spots"........... and thats with the car untouched.

      Things tend to escalate quick, when bits are stripped


    • Registered Users Posts: 793 ✭✭✭ metricspaces


      What would you expect to pay for a decent job? (Engine out, cut out rust, weld, full respray)

      Just to add. The quotes of 3-4k were based on leaving the car with the garage for potentially a few months and they'd work on it basically on any down time they had.


    • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 4,749 Mod ✭✭✭✭ kadman


      As pointed out by a previous poster, decent resprays are a big lump of the budget.

      And you seem to be getting a respray, plus a lot of other work for small enough money.

      I,m not saying that its wrong. I,m saying its a lot cheaper than I,ve heard of.

      Like I say, do the research and see other work done. Dont commit until you,ve seen

      previous work.


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    • Registered Users Posts: 2,175 ✭✭✭ EPAndlee


      Restoring my 88 starlet at the moment. Non rusty panels next to impossible to find. If yours is an ep71 then even harder to find as there's only about 14 or 15 left in the country I heard. Really depends on the quality of work your getting done but would have thought 5k would cover a good standard of work


    • Registered Users Posts: 107 ✭✭ _ptashek_


      I'm assuming you're really committed to a full resto. Not a so called "botch job resto" - i.e. a few patches welded in, smothered with zinc primer and stone chip guard.

      Some practical advice from own experience, and knowing closely a guy who's been doing this for over 30 years:

      Start with defining exactly what you want done. List everything you can think of. Group the work i.e. body work, paint, interior, suspension, engine, gearbox etc. Then list in order of priority, with the things that you're OK not having done being last on the list. Do you want old parts rebuilt, or new ones installed? If new - OEM, or aftermarket? Can you do some of the work yourself?

      Make sure you know your budget to the cent, and add 25% to it as safety buffer.
      Accept the fact that a properly done full resto on anything but a top-tier classic will cost far more than the car is worth.

      Aside from that, no respectable shop will give you an exact restoration quote on paint and body work. It's just impossible without dismantling the car to pieces and stripping it to bare metal.

      I've seen such projects fly past the 3500 man-hour mark without warning... (just recently, a 230SL Pagoda @ 3850, and needing another 1000, at least, to be finished to concourse level). My own car took 2250 man-hours over 26 months, 380 of those hours was paint alone (from bare metal to polished paint work).

      This just isn't something you can get done properly for 3-4k. Ever.


    • Registered Users Posts: 33 ✭✭✭ GavFitz


      I have done a fair few restorations some finished some in progress, I strip the cars myself, windows, deals panels etc by myself or with the bodyshop guys and the paint and repair alone comes in about €3500 on average. (That's a Dublin shop, I believe its cheaper outside Dublin but I have no proof of that!)


    • Registered Users Posts: 793 ✭✭✭ metricspaces


      _ptashek_ wrote: »
      I'm assuming you're really committed to a full resto. Not a so called "botch job resto" - i.e. a few patches welded in, smothered with zinc primer and stone chip guard.

      Some practical advice from own experience, and knowing closely a guy who's been doing this for over 30 years:

      Start with defining exactly what you want done. List everything you can think of. Group the work i.e. body work, paint, interior, suspension, engine, gearbox etc. Then list in order of priority, with the things that you're OK not having done being last on the list. Do you want old parts rebuilt, or new ones installed? If new - OEM, or aftermarket? Can you do some of the work yourself?

      Make sure you know your budget to the cent, and add 25% to it as safety buffer.
      Accept the fact that a properly done full resto on anything but a top-tier classic will cost far more than the car is worth.

      Aside from that, no respectable shop will give you an exact restoration quote on paint and body work. It's just impossible without dismantling the car to pieces and stripping it to bare metal.

      I've seen such projects fly past the 3500 man-hour mark without warning... (just recently, a 230SL Pagoda @ 3850, and needing another 1000, at least, to be finished to concourse level). My own car took 2250 man-hours over 26 months, 380 of those hours was paint alone (from bare metal to polished paint work).

      This just isn't something you can get done properly for 3-4k. Ever.

      Thanks for the detailed reply! Yes, I definitely don't want a cheap "botch" job.

      Just to give some more info. This car is driven every week and it has passed the NCT every year. This year it failed on 5 rust issues on primary structure. Mechanically the car is sound - so I don't need any parts rebuilt.

      I've already replaced lots of the parts anyhow (head gasket, radiator, master brake cylinder, suspension, brakes).

      If I was getting work done on parts, it would be just to make them look nice (engine\head cover itself is a bit rusted, wheel hubs rusted).

      Really it is just the body of the car that needs addressing. With this in mind, is 3-4k really that low?


    • Registered Users Posts: 793 ✭✭✭ metricspaces


      GavFitz wrote: »
      I have done a fair few restorations some finished some in progress, I strip the cars myself, windows, deals panels etc by myself or with the bodyshop guys and the paint and repair alone comes in about €3500 on average. (That's a Dublin shop, I believe its cheaper outside Dublin but I have no proof of that!)

      Thanks! So my quotes of 3.4k sound fair based on what you say? The only difference is you strip the car yourself, whereas I'll get the garage to do it?


    • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 4,749 Mod ✭✭✭✭ kadman


      I,m currently working on my own resto on this car.
      It looks like its just been finished, looks great in the pic. Its not,
      its before, and the bottom 12" is red rotten, and had to be replaced with new metal, but not readily available.

      [IMG][/img]RpAOD1c.jpg

      The window seals alone for front , back and 2 sides rear without the doors cost me 400 euro. Plus the cellulose, because I,m not equipped to spray 2 pack isocyanates was in the region of another 300 euro.

      Thats why I am amazed at your low quote for 3-4k.

      jSabUKE.jpg

      At the outset car may appear brilliant, but when the stripping starts, thats another thing.

      As already pointed out, its easy to pass what the car is really worth. And if you have structural repair issues you need to know that the place doing your work is a SQI and his work will pass the nct. Thats why you need to see previous work, and chat with customers. If your man is genuine, then this wont be a problem.


    • Registered Users Posts: 793 ✭✭✭ metricspaces


      Nice car! Yes the seals are not something I considered. If they are currently good can you take them off and put them back on again? Or once you take off it's not possible to get them back on?

      The garages I've gone to so far for quotes don't specialise in restorations. So I think I'll visit a few that specialise in this area. Maybe the quotes will be higher there (and possibly for a good reason as you are pointing out!).


    • Registered Users Posts: 107 ✭✭ _ptashek_


      Really it is just the body of the car that needs addressing. With this in mind, is 3-4k really that low?

      Even just for body work and paint, 4k ist extremely low in my opinion. You wouldn't get a quality job for that money even in Eastern Europe where the labour rate is 4-5x lower than in Ireland.

      Once that underseal is stripped, you're bound to see some extra "monsters" and costs will escalate. PM me and I can share some pics from my own car, it'll nicely demonstrate the point :)

      It may be just better doing a proper fix to the visible rust and leaving it at that. Each to their own as they say, but a Starlet may not be worth the effort and expense.


    • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 25,535 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Dades


      Definitely seek testimonials from the previous customers of any quoter you consider.

      My neighbour's brother had some crowd turn his W123 to shít over the course of a few months "restoration".
      It'll never be the same again. The shutlines... paint job... seals... all botched.


    • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 4,749 Mod ✭✭✭✭ kadman


      Nice car! Yes the seals are not something I considered. If they are currently good can you take them off and put them back on again? Or once you take off it's not possible to get them back on?

      The garages I've gone to so far for quotes don't specialise in restorations. So I think I'll visit a few that specialise in this area. Maybe the quotes will be higher there (and possibly for a good reason as you are pointing out!).

      It was a beautiful looking car in the previous picture,

      But this is what was lurking beneath the back passenger wing. And no panels were available.

      [IMG][/img]5Of6avk.jpg

      I had to make this repair, and 15 panels underneath you cant see,

      UmQ57Ka.jpg

      on this corner only.

      So you dont really know what needs extensive repair, until the stripping starts.

      I just popped up these pics to show dont judge the book by the cover.

      As has been suggested, maybe just deal with the nct requirements at the moment. And then take a long hard look at the resto costs.

      Your resto man wont know whats there until he starts digging, and then your price go up dramatically.


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    • Registered Users Posts: 33 ✭✭✭ GavFitz


      You'll get the paint done for €3500, I'm on my third resto in the last 4 years, testimonials and shop around. Duff motors painted a sierra for a friend of mine for €3600 recently, did a decent job too.

      Again, that's without them having to strip it, the car arrived to them stripped, windows out etc.


    • Registered Users Posts: 3,690 ✭✭✭ Neilw


      GavFitz wrote: »
      You'll get the paint done for €3500, I'm on my third resto in the last 4 years, testimonials and shop around. Duff motors painted a sierra for a friend of mine for €3600 recently, did a decent job too.

      Again, that's without them having to strip it, the car arrived to them stripped, windows out etc.

      Very same as I did, I stripped the car completely and left it on for paint then.
      Paid a similar price too, I reassembled the car after it was painted.

      My car didn't need any significant metalwork but you could easily rack up the same amount again in panels and labour.


    • Registered Users Posts: 8,548 ✭✭✭ JohnBoy26


      Where is the rust?


    • Registered Users Posts: 793 ✭✭✭ metricspaces


      JohnBoy26 wrote: »
      Where is the rust?

      Three door sills. In the corner where the door meets the body. It's isolated to a hole of about 2cm diameter.

      Panel at back bumper. Isolated to a straight line of about 1cm x 8cm.

      Under drivers footwell (no idea how bad until underseal comes off)


    • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 4,749 Mod ✭✭✭✭ kadman


      Quote might make sense now, if its only fitting 2 new cills, and bumper mounts.


    • Registered Users Posts: 793 ✭✭✭ metricspaces


      Theres surface rust in other places and corrosion. For example the lip inside the wheel arches has corrosion, a few mm.

      I fotgot to mention too that the corner of one door is corroded with a 2cm diameter hole and bubbling around it. But this is secondary struture.


    • Registered Users Posts: 793 ✭✭✭ metricspaces


      I'll get some more quotes. But I'm a bit lost as to what to do.

      I could just get welds done to pass NCT. Will be just a few hundred to fix. But I'll end up doing this every year or two if i keep the car. Plus it's not like i can get just the welds sprayed to blend in with 30yr old paint work so it'll eventually look like a patchwork quilt.

      On the positive I'll not be spending 3-4k and it'll just be a jammer so i won't care about it getting damaged.

      I could go for full refurb. But there's a risk the price may escalate beyond 3-4k and then there's other costs like if i want to sand blast and powder coat wheel hub & engine. Then once it's perfect i won't want to park it anywhere near another car lol

      I know you'll rarely make the money back that you put into a refurb and it's not why I'm doing it, the car has sentimental value. But if the car was 100% it would be worth in the 3-4k bracket and price will only rise going forward. So it may not be a bad investment (if done properly)?


    • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 4,749 Mod ✭✭✭✭ kadman


      Rust is in no way sentimental.

      Unless you cut it all out, it just keeps giving........more,

      year after year. Sentimental values cost, so be careful.


    • Registered Users Posts: 793 ✭✭✭ metricspaces


      kadman wrote: »
      Unless you cut it all out, it just keeps giving........more,.

      Yes. So I'd need to be sure any refurb is a 100% good job with all rust cut out and then the panels prepared & treated properly (I've no real idea what this entails).

      If I paid 4k and had rust appearing a few years later that would not be a good 4k spent.

      If i decide to go the full refurb route i guess all i can do is find a good garage that has happy customers who got refurbs a few years back.


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    • Moderators, Category Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 58,891 CMod ✭✭✭✭ unkel


      I have a 1988 Toyota Starlet EP71 that has a fair bit of rust and I am considering getting it completely restored.

      I take it the car has sentimental value? If not, restoring it is just money down the drain for a car that will never have any value reflecting the money you spend on it.

      I had an EP71 myself, a 1.3, NCTd and running very well and I gave it away for free to a nice young gentleman member of the travelling community who asked about it a few times :)

      "Wind is Ireland's oil" - An Taoiseach, 25/05/2022



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