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question about getting Camaro/

Camaro Discussions (NON-TECHNICAL)

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Bezanson88
Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 2:27 pm
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Hey all, don't know if i should make another thread but thought what the heck...why not. if you want you can combine this into my other post mod/admin.

My question is, now that ive set my heart on a 3rd gen camaro, i know they take work especially since the one i will probably end up getting will be cheap and thus requiring some form of work. Even though i still don't own a camaro ive been looking all over this site and thirdgen.org to get a good idea of common problems and fixes. My main question is do you think that even though i don't have a lot of any mechanical exp, i should still get a camaro, I've always loved these cars and i figured that i would sorta get my hands dirty with this car, im a hands on learner and pretty decent at problem solving. So i think i might be able to manage with some things. The only other thing is, i lack any form of what you would call a shop. I have a jack right now and some tools. So opinions or other options you feel like suggesting, lemme know. I guess i could save up more money and try to get a better deal but i would also learn this as a way to get to know my car and learn to respond to different situations accordingly.
Thanks in advance,
Steve
 

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mbrian56
Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 3:10 pm
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I love my camaro. They can be tough to maintain. If you have the money to fix it up well, than it's worth it but if not, might not be the best car for you. Plus if you ever get into an accident, it could be tough to find replacement parts for the car at a reasonable price. It's definitely something fun to drive though!! I'd buy the third gen if anything!!
 

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irocz85owner
Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 4:32 pm
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yea some 3rd gens are not in the best of conditions and they can be costly to fix up and maintain do to GM discontinuing the parts,places like year one and etc carry oem parts but theyre NOT cheap,when i got my iroc-z i didnt have that much knowledge on v8 cars i was into the tuner cars :oops: :dontknow: ,but im sure you learn alot by owing one and building it up good luck
my 85 IROC-Z-350 4 bolt main,700r tranny,B&M shift kit,edelbrock performer intake,holley carb,headman headers,magnaflow exhaust,charcoal/black interior,new paint and more this year

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Bezanson88
Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 5:15 pm
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yeah im not super naive, i know its going to cost money either way like all cars, just was curious to see other peoples opinions, cause there are some nice camaro's around for a decent price too, hopefully sometime in the near future i'll get mine.
 

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IrocTopless
Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 6:31 pm
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Any used car (especially 16+ years old) has the potential to need some or a lot of work. A cheap car may not be a bargain down the road but it can be a good learning experience. Finding one in decent shape and relatively low mileage can go a long ways to minimize the amount of work to do. If you can, find one that hasn't been through a gazzillion owners and possibly an owner with receipts of work done.

What kind of work on your car are you concerned about?
- basic maintainance (oil changes, replacing plugs & plug wires, filters, etc)
- general maintainance (replacing water pump, alternator, valve stem seals, etc)
- heavy maintainance (engine/tranny rebuild, total brake job, etc)

What do you want to do with your Camaro?
- Daily driver
- Fully restored original
- A Resto-mod

Give us a little background as to your expectations for this ride.
Is it just work to keep it on the road or do you want to do a lot more?
1989 Iroc-Z, 305 TPI, 5 spd, 3.08 diff My Car Domain Website
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Bezanson88
Posted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 7:02 am
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with regards to basic maintenance while i haven't really done that much am not to worried, with regards to more general maintenance while not something i would just jump into and assume i could fix, im not afraid of learning it as well i have some friends are that pretty mechanically inclined so. heavy maintenance would be the only problem as not only do i not have the knowledge i don't have the tools to perform such an action. I want the Camaro to be that of something i can enjoy and drive around in the spring and summer and fall and tuck away for the winter, me living in halifax i know that doesn't give me a lot of road time, but these cars are just so awesome that i could settle for anything else right now. so i guess that falls into the category of daily driver, with my original intentions being that of a late 80's early 90's iroc or z 28.
as well i tried sending an email to maritime camaro club, but i have yet to get a response from them so who knows about that, overall i just want a fun ride, that i can learn on, as well enjoy and not have to worry about paying thousands of dollars just to keep bare minimum running.
 

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tehsocks
Posted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 7:33 am
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I find camaro's pretty reliable. Yeah ive only owned mine for 5 months. but it was owned by a guy who didnt care much about it, only cost me $1500 and had 203xxxkm's have put almost 7000km on it since then.

And i can say that i havent had a single problem with it, just needed an oil change and a fan belt.(about $50) Nothin mechanically wrong with her, nothing is wearing out badly that i know of other then my tires :lol:

I use mine as you can tell 7000km in 5 months... alot
to school, to work, etc...

I dont think the repair/matinence costs will hurt you with a camaro.
85 Camaro Z28 - 305ci 5.0L carb, auto - Stock

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Bezanson88
Posted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 9:11 am
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tehsocks wrote:
I find camaro's pretty reliable. Yeah ive only owned mine for 5 months. but it was owned by a guy who didnt care much about it, only cost me $1500 and had 203xxxkm's have put almost 7000km on it since then.

And i can say that i havent had a single problem with it, just needed an oil change and a fan belt.(about $50) Nothin mechanically wrong with her, nothing is wearing out badly that i know of other then my tires :lol:

I use mine as you can tell 7000km in 5 months... alot
to school, to work, etc...

I dont think the repair/matinence costs will hurt you with a camaro.


awesome i guess ill just have to watch out for what i buy and such, i will for sure not go into a deal blind i have many much more mechanically inclined friends who i will bring along to examine the deals and make sure the guy is not hiding anything from me that could cost lots of money.
 

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IrocTopless
Posted: Thu Jan 17, 2008 8:18 am
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Another option which I recommend to anyone buying any used car, is not only to test drive it, but to take it (if possible) to a trusted mechanic for a quick inspection for any potential problems. If the seller has problems with that, I'd be very suspicous.
1989 Iroc-Z, 305 TPI, 5 spd, 3.08 diff My Car Domain Website
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Bezanson88
Posted: Thu Jan 17, 2008 7:25 pm
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yeah for sure, its what i plan on doing anyways, just to know what sorta life expectancy i got before i drop a bunch of money into a car.
 

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RSCAMAROGUY91
Posted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 6:28 am
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Yeah, Camaros are not too bad to keep up. Everything except for heavy maintenance (Engine overhaul, tranny ,etc...) is fairly easy. I had to replace my water pump, and if I'm not mistaken I had to pay $30-$40 for a new one. As far as Z/28 v.s. RS I'd say the RS will be mostly what you find. There are Z/28's out there, but they didn't make any where near as many Z/28's as they did RS's. This is especially true if you want a 350 Z/28. If you can't find a Z/28, and you find a really nice RS, get the RS. There is no shame in getting the RS, unless you get a V-6 model, then I wouldn't brag a whole lot (No offense V-6 owners). I've got an RS with 305 & 5-speed, and it has all the performance I need for now.

As far as body panels go, you can get GM parts, but they are friggin' high. A stock steel RS hood is around $800 new. You can find these parts though. When a guy smashed into my front end I found all the parts I needed in used but as new condition for $800. So, if you have to find these parts there out there as well. GOOD LUCK!!!
1991 RS Camaro with a fresh 355 ci Small Block with several mods.
 

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zchris87v
Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2008 6:39 pm
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So far, I've had relatively little problems with mine (knock on wood). That's also because for 175,000 miles, it was taken care of and never ragged out. If you can find one that was owned by someone with a family, who bought it when they had a family, chances are it hasn't seen punishment. I was really amazed at how clean my car was when I was looking at it. I'm able to go under the hood and come out with my hands still clean. And I doubt it was ever cleaned up, as my cousin told me his plans for the car were to buy it and drive it until it died, and he wasn't going to spend a cent on an oil change/repairs/etc. Luckily, I got to it in time. Granted, it's nothing to envy (V6 and auto), but it's a great running car that turns some heads.

And I think you came to the right place for 3rd gen questions, as it appears we have more 3rd gen owners than anything else here.
1991 Camaro RS (Coupe, 3.1L V6, 700R4 auto)
1988 Camaro RS (T-tops, 5.0L V8, 5-speed)
1996 Nissan Altima (2.4L, 5-speed, 33+ MPG)
1987 Jeep Wrangler (4.0L, 5-speed, fully waterproofed interior, 4" lift, 33x12.5R15 Pro Comps)
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RSCAMAROGUY91
Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 8:56 am
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Yeah, as long as you find a solid one owner you will be o.k. That's the deal I found. A friend of my dads had the car, and his wife drove the car everyday, so I figured that she probably didn't hurt it to bad. What you have to do is, is find one that if it does need a little TLC then you can afford to do it. I mean don't pay a lot for a car that is need of paint, exhaust, tires, etc... On the other hand if you find a car in great shape, it would be o.k. to pay a little more for it because it shouldn't need as much work. I'd say get the one that would need a little more work because that way you can get in there, and get your hands dirty, and learn about your car. I just rolled over 167,000 this week and so far I've got the stock engine, transmission, and clutch. I've still got the original rear end, but I took it out and changed it to a different rear end. good luck
1991 RS Camaro with a fresh 355 ci Small Block with several mods.
 

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jasonnikki
Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 3:48 pm
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I know that prices are going to go up on replacement parts (as previously mentioned), but i wouln't say that these cars are really that costly to repair. When i bought my 88 camaro it had 2 owners before me; both were 16 year old girls. One of those owners wrecked it twice. It still had the original sparkplugs, tires, and belts( for 16 years!). It was the text-book definition of abused. To repair the car i had to get:

Passenger side fender
Passenger side door
Belts, spark plugs, ect..
Tires
Hood
Radiator support
Alternator
Passenger sideskirt
Rear strut bars
and countless other misc parts

And as for mechanical experience: I needed help to learn how to change spark plugs. But from there I learned everything I needed to know on my own by trail and error. And to date I have a perfectly restored 88 camaro: having spent about 4500 dollars on it total (including the cost of the car). So it's really not that out of reach for someone who has no experience and a tight budget. I'd say go for it. But I would also say that you need good connections at a trustworthy local junkyard, good luck!
 

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zchris87v
Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 4:02 pm
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jasonnikki wrote:
But I would also say that you need good connections at a trustworthy local junkyard, good luck!


And it doesn't hurt to know all the local parts store employees by name :lol:
1991 Camaro RS (Coupe, 3.1L V6, 700R4 auto)
1988 Camaro RS (T-tops, 5.0L V8, 5-speed)
1996 Nissan Altima (2.4L, 5-speed, 33+ MPG)
1987 Jeep Wrangler (4.0L, 5-speed, fully waterproofed interior, 4" lift, 33x12.5R15 Pro Comps)
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RSCAMAROGUY91
Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 8:08 pm
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zchris87v wrote:
jasonnikki wrote:
But I would also say that you need good connections at a trustworthy local junkyard, good luck!


And it doesn't hurt to know all the local parts store employees by name :lol:


That's never really helped me that much. I got to know several of the parts people pretty good, and for some odd reason I never could get any deals. :?
1991 RS Camaro with a fresh 355 ci Small Block with several mods.
 

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zchris87v
Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 8:29 pm
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Well I don't mean deals in general, just help with stuff. Like I got a battery from a guy I knew, and for some reason the one I got didn't match the one that was in the computer. So the guy did something where he was able to claim it was faulty, even though it was out of the warranty period. Then the whole deal I mentioned before about getting the wrong bulbs from a different store, where the store by my house just took them back after I'd had them for a few months without me having the receipt. So not special "deals", but just general help with stuff like that.
1991 Camaro RS (Coupe, 3.1L V6, 700R4 auto)
1988 Camaro RS (T-tops, 5.0L V8, 5-speed)
1996 Nissan Altima (2.4L, 5-speed, 33+ MPG)
1987 Jeep Wrangler (4.0L, 5-speed, fully waterproofed interior, 4" lift, 33x12.5R15 Pro Comps)
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RSCAMAROGUY91
Posted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 9:18 am
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O.K. I see what your saying.
1991 RS Camaro with a fresh 355 ci Small Block with several mods.
 


 

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