Older blog entries for biffhero (starting at number 2)

a _little_ car news

12 Apr 2000

Called the DMV to talk to them about tags and plates for the car. As usual, I waited until all DMVs in California were closed except one which was forever long ways away from our home, but what does that matter for the phone stuff?

I called them up, and asked what I needed to do to get tags and a title. The helpful lady asked if it already had a California title. It does not. She said that I had to bring it over to the DMV so they could look at it. I mentioned that it didn't run. She asked me how I got it to my house, and when I told her that I had had it towed on a flatbed, she said that I could have it towed down to the DMV. Hrmm... _That_'s probably not going to happen, so I asked her for alternatives. She told me that a Highway Patrolman could verify the car for me, but that would cost money. But it would probably be less than a two way tow job. argh.

However, the fellow who teaches my Sunday School class used to be a cop in Santa Cruz (just accepted a job with Santa Maria PD) and his brother-in-law has some sort of law enforcement ties. I think I will ask around church tomorrow and see if either of them are able to do this mystery verification for me.

14 Apr 2000

I opened the driver's door, sat in the car. Brian climbed in the back after I opened the door for him. I found a key holder with two keys on it. I tried them both in the trunk with no success. I now have two of each of the keys, which is good. I also found some more documentation.

There was a 1970 Chiltons. In case you don't know, Chilton's is _the_ book for working on automobiles. Trust me. Walk into any shop and say, "Do you have a Chilton's on `name the year and model of your car` that I can look at?" I was kind of dismayed that it was for 1970, and the page which had a marker in it was for a Buick, but when I looked closer, this Chilton's was not just for one make or model over a few years. It was for a lot of cars from 1963 - 1970. Yes, the Lincoln Continental was there from '63 - '70. This is good, very good. I now have detailed instructions on how to take things out and put them back. This is very good, especially since I tend to have a few parts left over when I put things together.

There was also some more interesting documentation. There was a warranty card and a card which they used for the new buyers when they picked up their cars. I now know the name and address of the lady who orignally bought the car. I am kinda bummed that the warranty coupon for 24,000 miles on up was in there. Owell.

That was all that I did yesterday, not a whole lot.

It is just after midnight, but I need to get into here what happened the next Monday at work. I posted an email to <foo>@valinux.com with a subject line of "I bought me a car!". I got some good responses, here is a summary:

(oops, 36 emails in that thread, have to cut it down some)

Kevin Collins: Dragan said: "Why the hell would anyone buy a car like that?", He doesn't understand the lure of a 63 Lincoln with suicude doors...

Two congrats, one request for a ride to SVLUG, one description of it as a boat, not a car, three more comments on suicide doors.

I had to convert the 430 in^3 to Litres for Marc Merlin, and it comes out to be 7.04643580. Dragan of course was too practical, saying that 7.0 Liters was 1.0 MPG, and that it was unsafe in an accident and a few more boat comparisons.

I even made the mistake to leave the original ebay information in the page which I showed everyone at VA. The _wonderful_ Scott McNeil even tried to buy the car, thinking that I was joking about buying it. Heh....

9 April 2000

So then, the following Sunday, I was able to go get it. I drove up there with a friend, and the flat bed driver was happy to get on the road. I gave the fellow his cash, bought a center link from him for $100 and bailed back to Milpitas.

That day was full of admiration, checking out the colors of the paint in the sun. It is dark dark blue, you can only tell it is blue when the sun is directly on it. Drug a damp rag over it, got it looking a bit better. I guess I will have to figure out where to put it. It isn't as long as the Honda Odyssey, though. It looks longer, but it isn't longer, so there. :-P

I also looked inside a bit, saw the windshield in the back seat, grabbed the service manuals, and perused them a bit.

We couldn't get the trunk open, we aren't sure how the mechanism works. One of the keys goes in the trunk and turns, but nothing happens. I think that the button needs to be unlocked and then it should pop out, so that I can push the button, and get the trunk open. It is kinda bugging me, since I am hoping for an air cleaner in there.

12 April 2000

I talked to Tony at work a bit about it, he is all for pulling the engine and doing a complete rebuild on it. I am not sure. My dad suggests just trying to get it running. I know I don't have the $$$ for the rebuild kit right now. Tony _did_ offer me his engine stand for until July. I don't think I could finish the rebuild that quickly. He also mentioned that some places could turn around a rebuild in a weekend, and I really wish I had the $$$ for _that_.

I got home and decided to mess with it a bit. Had to find a battery somewhere, couldn't find one. Ah, take one out of the Cutlass, but it is to painful. I am not going to take the battery out of the Odyssey, so what to do? I know! I pulled the Cutlass over to the Continental, and hooked up jumper cables to the battery cables. Which ones? Oh, the wiring diagram told me.

Hey! Now I can move the front seat!!! (electric and all that) This thing might work someday after all!

Crack! What was that sound? "Heather, you can laugh at me any time now.", I says. There went the windshield. Argh! Argh! Heather helped me carry the (now worthless) windshield into the garage. *sigh*.

Back to the car. All four headlights work. High beam and low beam works properly.

That was as far as I got, it was getting dark, Brian was running around the place, and we needed to get inside.

I bought a car.

I bought it on ebay, of all places.

I bought it on 1 April, 2000, about 9:30 in the evening. We had just gotten home, and I thought about looking for an excursion on ebay. I found some, but didn't need an excursion _that_ badly. Besides, when I get an excursion, I plan on getting the one that I want.

So I bumped into this thing called "regional ebay", where the auctions were in your area. I got to looking there, and found a car. It was a 1963 Lincoln Continental, dark blue. There were only 15 minutes left in the auction, so I tried to call my dad. I couldn't get ahold of him. My folks were on a vacation with Heather's folks, in Yuma, and guess what, only one phone line. They were probably online, so we tried the cell phone. Doh! it was turned off.

I ran over to Zach (my neighbor, has some old cars, works on them himself)'s house, and said in the kitchen window, "'63 continental", what do you think? "Oh, you could probably get 2 or 3 thousand for that.", he says. I said, "There are 15 minutes left in the auction, come see what you think of this."

So Zach came over, and read the description. He said, "I would go for it, up to $2,500." The bid was at $2,052 at that point, but time was running out. So I put in a bid for $2,077, and a follow-on bid for $2,127, just in case someone bid over my bid by the smallest increment possible, $25.

After my bid was placed, I paged the guy, and he called me back right away, and we talked about how I could get the car.

Here is the description of the car from the auction.

THIS AUCTION IS BEING RELISTED DUE TO A DEADBEAT BIDDER WHO WITHDREW HIS BID ON THE LAST DAY OF THE AUCTION. Please DO NOT bid if there is even a SLIGHT chance that you can't follow through, I don't need the aggravation.

So, once again... I am selling my 1963 Lincoln Continental as an unfinished project car. When I bought it, it was running great except the transmission was slipping a little, and there was a major exhaust leak from a warped manifold. I drove it around for awhile and took it off the road to fix it up. I was very gung-ho for quite some time. I lost interest and then moved from Pa. to Ca. I had the car shipped out here when I lost my storage in Pa. I now need the space, and have no motovation to finish this project.

I have close to five thousand dollars wrapped up in this car (including the purchase price), and just want it out of my life. I am selling this with NO RESERVE!

Let me tell you a little bit about what has been done to her. The transmission has been fully rebuilt (I have the receipt - $860). It has brand new correct size tires (from Coker tire - $600), new carpeting (from Baker's - $300), new brakes, wheel cylinders, and hardware all the way around, the heads and exhaust manifold mating surfaces have been machined to ensure a leak proof joint, the valves were lapped and valve seals replaced at the same time. That is just some of the major items. When I bought this car, it had recently been treated to a complete stainless steel exhaust system ($1200 from Baker's). This vehicle is not currently running, and will need to be shipped to it's new home. Here are some of the things that have kept me from finishing this project (pretty minor stuff) besides my general loss of interest. The distributor has to be rebuilt and installed, the trans cooler lines need replacing/modifying. It needs some coolant hoses replaced. I'm sure there are some other minor items that I can't recall (it's been three years since I've laid a wrench on it). The windshield is cracked, but I have an extra one that is perfect. The leather on the seats is cracking (but not split) and needs some conditioning. This car has all of the power options, but does not have a/c. All of the power items were working when I parked her. I also have some extra window motors, and some other misc parts (I think I even have a car cover somwhere). A few other things... the color is a deep dark blue, it has been repainted along the way, could use a new center link, and the springs are a little sprung.

This car is in overall decent shape, but I have neglected it for far too long, and have fell out of love with it. Please give her a new home and get her back on the road. Or at least cannibalize it and get another Lincoln on the road.

If you are seriously interested in bidding on the car, and have any questions, you can page me xxx-xxx-xxxx. I will be away from the 22-28 and unable to answer any pages or emails. Feel free to email me anyway, because I might have access to a computer. Please do not page me after 9p.m. P.S.T. The car is located in Oakland, California.

AUCTION TERMS - Car must be picked up within 14 days after end of auction. 50% of final price must be received within 3 days after auction ends in the form of a money order or certified check. The remaining 50% must be paid at time of pick up. Please do not bid if you will not follow through. I really need to move this vehicle into a loving home. Once again THERE IS NO RESERVE! Thanks, and good luck. NO DEADBEAT BIDDERS!

So, that's the end of what happened that first night. I owed some guy $2,077 for a car I had never seen, and didn't know how to get it down here or how bad of shape it was in. owell. I have some pictures that I will link to here, when I figure out how. They were posted by the seller, so you can see exactly what I saw on that night.

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