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RWD 19xx-1984 DeVille and Fleetwood,
1985-1996 Fleetwood and Brougham Forum Discussion, Question from First Time Buyer in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; Originally Posted by K2013 Cool story.....Thanks.:: Yes HUF, neat to hear your history...thanks for sharing. I really love the international ...
  1. #46
    talismandave's Avatar
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    Re: Reply

    Quote Originally Posted by K2013 View Post
    Cool story.....Thanks.::
    Yes HUF, neat to hear your history...thanks for sharing. I really love the international aspect of Cadillac Love!

  2. #47
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    HUF
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    Re: Reply

    Quote Originally Posted by talismandave View Post
    Yes HUF, neat to hear your history...thanks for sharing. I really love the international aspect of Cadillac Love!
    You are welcome. Keep us updated. Be careful with old Northstars. They have a known headgasket issue. Very expensive fix.

  3. #48
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    Question Reply

    Quote Originally Posted by HUF View Post
    You are welcome. Keep us updated. Be careful with old Northstars. They have a known headgasket issue. Very expensive fix.
    I have heard the horror stories of that, but the sad reality is that if I'm not able to find a decent Fleetwood or B Body in time, I might just have to compromise with one of the 1994-1995 4.9 cars (a Deville, or maybe even something on the other end of the spectrum with sufficient legroom, like an Eldorado) or even a northstar. If a northstar has already had the headgasket problem fixed, can it come back again?

    I'm hoping it doesn't come to that though; these are really tough to come by around here, and with the rusty 1994 Fleetwood out of the equation, I've got nothing local to test drive. Funny story though, I actually saw a 1995 Fleetwood back in December on Craiglist (before I knew what they were worth and how hard they were to find) a couple hours away from home, but it was a decent looking vehicle with low miles and the seller desperately needed to sell and was only asking $1500. I called on that one right away when I got home, and it was still available, but with a catch: The car had been smashed badly since it had been posted in november on the drivers side door while the driver was slowing to back into a driveway, someone drove by too close at 60 miles per. The car might be available in Febuary for $500. Supposedly the seller still drives it to work daily as is, but has to get in and out of the passenger door. At this rate, I'm almost tempted to see what would be involved to repair that kind of damage. If that were to become an option in Febuary, would anyone recommend that, or would it be too costly to fix completely?

    ::

  4. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by K2013

    I have heard the horror stories of that, but the sad reality is that if I'm not able to find a decent Fleetwood or B Body in time, I might just have to compromise with one of the 1994-1995 4.9 cars (a Deville, or maybe even something on the other end of the spectrum with sufficient legroom, like an Eldorado) or even a northstar. If a northstar has already had the headgasket problem fixed, can it come back again?

    I'm hoping it doesn't come to that though; these are really tough to come by around here, and with the rusty 1994 Fleetwood out of the equation, I've got nothing local to test drive. Funny story though, I actually saw a 1995 Fleetwood back in December on Craiglist (before I knew what they were worth and how hard they were to find) a couple hours away from home, but it was a decent looking vehicle with low miles and the seller desperately needed to sell and was only asking $1500. I called on that one right away when I got home, and it was still available, but with a catch: The car had been smashed badly since it had been posted in november on the drivers side door while the driver was slowing to back into a driveway, someone drove by too close at 60 miles per. The car might be available in Febuary for $500. Supposedly the seller still drives it to work daily as is, but has to get in and out of the passenger door. At this rate, I'm almost tempted to see what would be involved to repair that kind of damage. If that were to become an option in Febuary, would anyone recommend that, or would it be too costly to fix completely?

    ::
    Depends if the frame/ body is damaged. If its just the door, the door can be replaced, but it sounds like the pillars or floor may be damaged.

  5. #50
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    Re: Question from First Time Buyer

    K2013,

    Deadlines and car buying do not mix well. I am sure there will be great deals ahead. Have you considered a FL Fleetwood? You could check out ebay sellers with 100% or even FL craiglist.

  6. #51
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    Re: Question from First Time Buyer

    That would be a sweet way to get a good deal if the damage is minor enough and if the car is worthwhile to begin with. Wouldn't hurt to go look at it and do your usual thorough inspection. Snap a lot of pics and see what you have to work with. Better to check and rule it out if it is too bad or be ready to make a decision when he is ready to sell. Even if it never comes for sale in Feb, look at it as good practice and a way to learn more about the cars in general. Practice makes perfect!

  7. #52
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    Re: Question from First Time Buyer

    Crossing fingers and toes the right car comes your way. Life is too short to compromise, get what you really want, do whatever it takes to make it happen!

  8. #53
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    Re: Question from First Time Buyer

    I think I would stick to rear wheel drive instead of the Eldo just because they are so much easier to work on.
    I guess it may just be what you learn on, but they seem easier to me at least.
    Way back cadillac kevin posted about looking at the older square body Cadillacs. You can often find a lot of car for little money on them.

  9. #54
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    Re: Question from First Time Buyer

    At $500, I'd get it as a parts car for your next purchase. Maybe even throw $350 in his face and see what he says. Even if you had to Dukes it out the window, you'd still love it.

  10. #55
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    Re: Question from First Time Buyer

    Well put!

    ...and actually a great idea. A good practice car to learn where everything is and make sure working on an old Cadillac is for you. When you are done and fall in love with it, which is inevitable, you strip it for parts. You can probably sell parts here to other members and finance your next car!
    Bro-Ham, Bro-Ham, K2013 and 1 others like this.

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    Lightbulb Reply

    Interesting thoughts; I kind of chuckle picturing the idea of driving to any public place and climbing out the window. I also got to thinking that I could extend that dreaded deadline if push came to shove by getting an easier to find "compromise car" (like the similar looking, but not quite as cool Deville or the tiny and sporty Eldorado), and drive that until I can find a quality vehicle for a good price. The plus side to this is that in two years (maybe sooner), my sister will be in the exact same situation I'm in, and I could just sell her my "compromise car" and have effectively bought myself plenty of time to find a good vehicle without this kind of time pressure looming over me.

    Another thing that makes the project more difficult is that my parents shot down the idea right away of me flying to a southern state to buy a vehicle and driving back, which greatly restricts the number of Craiglist sites I can scout.

    I sure hope I can find something or that something comes up with that cheaper Fleetwood that got smashed. I'll look at it if I get the opportunity, but that is a long way to drive for a "fixer upper". At any rate, I'll keep you guys posted and will put up some pictures if I find anything local.

    ::

  12. #57
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    Re: Question from First Time Buyer

    If you get a compromise car get one that you would want to have for a while. You're going to end up sinking money into it fixing it and keeping it on the road which will just make it longer until you can get what you really want.

    The ideal thing to do is if you can't wait any longer find a car like that Fleetwood you pictured and get it checked out by a garage and if it's road safe or doesn't take much to get it that way buy it for a good price like $1,500 and drive it until a nicer one comes up. Then you can either sell the junk one at a bit of a loss to get it outta there or use it for parts for yourself and sell what you don't want to others.
    talismandave and talismandave like this.

  13. #58
    Mark 78 Coupe is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Question from First Time Buyer

    Hey guys, I am wondering if we are jumping to conclusions too soon here on the Fleetwood in question. Certainly the reinforcement bar behind the bumper looks rusted, but really, is the rest of the frame really that bad? All northern cars have some frame rust, don't they? At least all of mine have. What we have failed to do here is advise our newest friend to do what I always do when I look at a car like this. First, get it up on a lift at a service station. These frames seem to rust through the most behind the hump for the rear axle. They also seem to rust out where the rear control arm attaches to the frame. I have seen several like this at the junk yards up north. Get a good up close up look at the rust and determine if it is just surface, or going through. I find the best way is to give any suspect spot a good whack with a small sledge hammer. If the frame is really toast, parts of it will certainly fall off. If it is just surface rust, all you will do is dislodge that rust, and the metal underneath should still be sound and solid. Certainly any competent mechanic should be able to assist with the diagnosis. Unless the frame really is bad, he may be passing up an otherwise nice looking first car-certainly much better looking than my first one!

  14. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark 78 Coupe
    Hey guys, I am wondering if we are jumping to conclusions too soon here on the Fleetwood in question. Certainly the reinforcement bar behind the bumper looks rusted, but really, is the rest of the frame really that bad? All northern cars have some frame rust, don't they? At least all of mine have. What we have failed to do here is advise our newest friend to do what I always do when I look at a car like this. First, get it up on a lift at a service station. These frames seem to rust through the most behind the hump for the rear axle. They also seem to rust out where the rear control arm attaches to the frame. I have seen several like this at the junk yards up north. Get a good up close up look at the rust and determine if it is just surface, or going through. I find the best way is to give any suspect spot a good whack with a small sledge hammer. If the frame is really toast, parts of it will certainly fall off. If it is just surface rust, all you will do is dislodge that rust, and the metal underneath should still be sound and solid. Certainly any competent mechanic should be able to assist with the diagnosis. Unless the frame really is bad, he may be passing up an otherwise nice looking first car-certainly much better looking than my first one!
    The pictures of the right frame rail/ floor and picture of rust on the body at the bottom of the doors also has me concerned. The frame looks really rough (I would try the small sledgehammer test) and there isn't much left of the body either. While it may not fall apart in a year or 2, it would not be wise to purchase it, as in a couple years it would be nothing more than a parts car. I doubt it would pass inspection being that rough (you'd need gas tank straps for sure, and would have issues trying to find somewhere to mount them)

  15. #60
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    Re: Question from First Time Buyer

    Hard to say. You may be right.

    It is really hard for me to look at it and not think long term. I guess it is easier to look at the one with the side caved in as a temporary (couple year) car than it is the first one he looked at. In actuality everything said in the last few posts could be applied to the original car. With the exception of the fact the original one is ready to go now.

    Even if the frame is badly rusted, it would probably last a couple years. While he is driving it, and repairing it, if he decides it is the model he wants, he will have time to search for a keeper.

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