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Discussion Starter #1
I am feeling I am not sure what. Frustrated? Kind of defeated? It seems the list of parts never stops. I have bought 3 engine blocks to get 1 good one. Interior trim I wanted original so I bought some that needed work have more into it than new. I had a lead on getting hubcaps refurbished only to find out the guy doesn't do that anymore. My seat needed new backs as it had apolstry on it and when I tore it down it had been sitting outside and was beyond repair. The " PERFECT HOOD" needs work. I could go on but am beginning to wonder if I really have it in me to do this. Feeling like giving up but I have come so far. What would you Do? I know most would say buy a better car but beleive me if there is a next time I will do that. Sorry gor the long rant but feeling defeated.
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Think of the finish line and keep on rolling it will get done, don’t cut corners and take your time, enjoy it while you are doin it, you will be very proud of all the hard work you put in 👍🏻 KEEP ON CHUGGIN ALONG
 

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Discussion Starter #4
You`ve ticked a lot of boxes off your list, sounds like progress to me, buying/swapping or trading for parts is still moving forward, you tend to forget how far you`ve come
Thanks for that word of encouragement. I have checked off a lot. Still a ways to go.
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Don't be discouraged. Nearly 14 yrs ago i bought a supposed 90% complete 57 sport coupe. I found that it was more like 90% still to do returning everything back to bare metal and start over. It took me 4 yrs of 4000 man hrs work I approached it as "eating an elephant one bite at a time". I made a rule that at least one task had to be done by the time I went in at 11pm each day. Needless to say many tasks got redone after checking them after many months. What you will find is your skill level will increase so does your standards 😉
At least you are asking advice so you're way ahead of most. Check out ebay unfinished projects for evidence.
 

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Hang in there. Building a car from the ground up is an enormous task. I have wasted money on parts over the years trying to save a little, but end up spending more later because the parts didn't cut it. I've found it's cheaper in the long run to spend the extra money and buy the good stuff from the get go. Buy once, cry once. I still have a ways to go one my car, but take it one project at a time. A trip to the Trifive Nats is a great motivator if you get the chance. I hope you stick with it. That 55's counting on you to get her back on the road.
 

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I feel your pain. EVERYthing about my project has been harder/took longer/was twice as expensive as I'd anticipated. As you mentioned, I'd buy a better car were I to do it again.

That said, there are two things I try to keep in mind to keep me on task: first- enjoy the journey; anyone can simply buy a car; it takes some real perseverance to build one. Concentrate on one area at a time, where possible. If time spent in the garage feels like drudgery, it's really not worth it in the long run. Secondly, (and it sounds like you have experienced this!) is that be very mindful of where you try to save money; "good deals" can easily cost more money (and time) in the long run.

Bonus point: sometimes you gotta walk away from it for a little bit
Hang in there!
 

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A word of caution, don't buy parts before you need them. You will either change your mind about using them, or they won't fit and can't return them, or the warranty will expire before you know they are bad.
 

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I Know the feeling you have.
10 years ago this last September I thought that with a little work I would have a driver. I drove it into the barn and there it still sets. One fix led to another necessary fix to another leading to fixing PO fixes. Then parts, parts, parts with high shipping costs even when combining orders. Some parts installed (windscreen drain tubes) need to be reinstalled due to deterioration. Due to health haven't been able to do hardly anything for the last 2 years. When the new garage is insulated, planning on moving the car to there where it will be warm and maybe I can get the gumption up again to work on it.

Good luck with yours --- and keep on plugging along!!
 

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I know exactly how you feel, and in hindsight I'd have never taken on my current project, and would instead have bought one that was further along, or even finished already, and modify it to what I like.
Mine isn't a Tri Five currently, but my '39 Chev coupe. Almost everyone who saw it when I bought it just shook their head and said something like, "What were you thinking when you decided to buy this?"
What I was thinking might be close to what you considered when you bought your Tri Five. It was exactly what I'd wanted for many years, and the price was extremely cheap....for good reason!
My particular car was so rotted out that when you closed the doors the whole side of the car moved in and out as it swung freely! And except for a beautiful frame, everything from about 4" down was rotted away! If it was free it likely wouldn't have been taken by a lot of people!
I became quickly aware of how overwhelmed I was with the project, but also figured I paid so little for it that I considered it a learning process, and likely not something I couldn't sell and get my money out of, or part out and be even if I did. But I began selling excess parts, buying repair panels, and removing and replacing bad sheet metal. It was a long slow process, and some days it seemed like I made backwards progress when I installed metal, and then cut it loose to readjust it, and make it right. There was more than a few times I regretted taking on the project, and that wasn't helped by friends sending me emails with links to identical cars for very cheap prices, that were running, painted, and looking very good!
In the end, (which I'm close to, but not done.) I now have a car that's 100% solid, and no rust at all. It's also brand new engine, and upgraded trans and front/rear suspension. And I love where it's at now!
All I can say is don't quit on it! You're overwhelmed by the project, but if you continue on with it you'll reach a point where you look at it and smile knowing you got it to that point. And if you give up, you'll remember that with a bad feeling inside.
I love being at the point I am now, and having my friends who thought I was nuts, now saying how amazed they are to see it where it's at today.
Just one thing to add. Work on it every chance you get, even if it's only for 30 minutes or an hour! If you walk away from it for long, it's easier to stay away, and get discouraged. The more times you spend a little time on it, the more your attitude will stay positive, and the more you'll want to keep going.
 

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You have to go some to beat my frustration I bought my 56 in Jr high with the intent of fixing it up to drive to high school. That did not happen 28 years later it did happen. My 55 a much bigger project was only 5 years after I recovered from 56.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I know exactly how you feel, and in hindsight I'd have never taken on my current project, and would instead have bought one that was further along, or even finished already, and modify it to what I like.
Mine isn't a Tri Five currently, but my '39 Chev coupe. Almost everyone who saw it when I bought it just shook their head and said something like, "What were you thinking when you decided to buy this?"
What I was thinking might be close to what you considered when you bought your Tri Five. It was exactly what I'd wanted for many years, and the price was extremely cheap....for good reason!
My particular car was so rotted out that when you closed the doors the whole side of the car moved in and out as it swung freely! And except for a beautiful frame, everything from about 4" down was rotted away! If it was free it likely wouldn't have been taken by a lot of people!
I became quickly aware of how overwhelmed I was with the project, but also figured I paid so little for it that I considered it a learning process, and likely not something I couldn't sell and get my money out of, or part out and be even if I did. But I began selling excess parts, buying repair panels, and removing and replacing bad sheet metal. It was a long slow process, and some days it seemed like I made backwards progress when I installed metal, and then cut it loose to readjust it, and make it right. There was more than a few times I regretted taking on the project, and that wasn't helped by friends sending me emails with links to identical cars for very cheap prices, that were running, painted, and looking very good!
In the end, (which I'm close to, but not done.) I now have a car that's 100% solid, and no rust at all. It's also brand new engine, and upgraded trans and front/rear suspension. And I love where it's at now!
All I can say is don't quit on it! You're overwhelmed by the project, but if you continue on with it you'll reach a point where you look at it and smile knowing you got it to that point. And if you give up, you'll remember that with a bad feeling inside.
I love being at the point I am now, and having my friends who thought I was nuts, now saying how amazed they are to see it where it's at today.
Just one thing to add. Work on it every chance you get, even if it's only for 30 minutes or an hour! If you walk away from it for long, it's easier to stay away, and get discouraged. The more times you spend a little time on it, the more your attitude will stay positive, and the more you'll want to keep going.
Any before and present pictures would help me with the motivation factor. Thanks.
 

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1956 2dr HT's (1 Belair, 1 210)
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GCDC7,

I've had my own discouragements with my '56 210 HT project. One thing that has helped me be/stay interested is watching Youtube project & first start vids. Besides learning things from time to time, the enthusiasm can be infectious.

FWIW, I have found a number of 'I wish I would have seen that before I bought this car' on my 210 HT, but at the end of the day, I still love the ****. Alot of my current project list consists of unturding it.

Happy New Year and best wishes,

Gotta56forme

PS: Is your GCDC7 name a nod to a guitar chord progression? I ask because (electric) guitars are my competing interest
 

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Discussion Starter #15
GCDC7,

I've had my own discouragements with my '56 210 HT project. One thing that has helped me be/stay interested is watching Youtube project & first start vids. Besides learning things from time to time, the enthusiasm can be infectious.

FWIW, I have found a number of 'I wish I would have seen that before I bought this car' on my 210 HT, but at the end of the day, I still love the ****. Alot of my current project list consists of unturding it.

Happy New Year and best wishes,

Gotta56forme

PS: Is your GCDC7 name a nod to a guitar chord progression? I ask because (electric) guitars are my competing interest
Gcdc7 is definitely not guitar cords. Only musical talent i have is i am told I have perfect pitch an a good voice. I actually did voice lessons as a kid and music is a HUGE part of my life. I love to sing.
 

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Any before and present pictures would help me with the motivation factor. Thanks.
I'll dig some up, I recall seeing your post off and on since you started, I've always said " if he ( you) can do it, I can". As far as being discouraged, I think it's safe to say" we've all been there( or will be)" I've owned my 56 since jan 1977, so in almost every situation, there was only - previous owner- me to blame, so I've had a few " why did I ever start this thing" moments as well. Good luck, will dig up some photo' s for ya.
 

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Any before and present pictures would help me with the motivation factor. Thanks.
Here are some before and after. I had a number of people saying "what were you thinking." This was my very first car purchased in 1965 and driven in and around New England. About 10 years ago, finally decided to get serious in its restoration which started in my garage. It took 7 years. I started by stripping it down, and photographing the process. My "go to" mechanic took on the project, (he did restoration mainly of older British vehicles). He did allow me to assist where I couldn't get into too much trouble, but under his eyes. The 55 has been "done" for 3 years now. Still a few minor tweaks to do. Remember this was a New England 55 stored for a number of years in my fathers dirt floor barn in NH..
 

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There have been some great points made here. The encouragement received on this forum is beyond measure. Anyone who has completed a build will will tell you of the satisfaction of doing it themselves. But this route is not for everybody. There is no shame in recognizing when you may be in over your head. I am not in any way indicating that this may be you. But for someone who has reached that point, I can tell you there are options. I ultimately decided to cut my losses on a never ending and overwhelming project and purchased an older restoration that was in need of updating and a fair amount of freshening up. Over several years I was able to take this car to another level beyond its original restoration all within my capabilities and finances. I am slowly getting this car closer and closer to the car I have envisioned in my dreams. For me, I just needed different starting point. Only you can decide for yourself if you are comfortable with your starting point. I think you already know that you have all the support of everyone on this forum no matter what you choose to do.
 

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Any before and present pictures would help me with the motivation factor. Thanks.
Here's a few before:











And as it sits today:











When I started this project I'd never done more than small patches in bodywork. Never done any upholstery work. At the end I taught myself how to do major metal repairs to floors, rockers, tail panel, and bought a sewing machine and learned to sew up all my interior.
I'll end by saying I'd never take on all this again. But I would take on any part of it again. It was just all of it together that seemed overwhelming in the early beginning of the car build. 18 months so far, thanks to covid and plenty of time to work on it!
There's a 36 page build thread in the "Non Tri Five" area here. Of course it's not done yet, but hopefully will be by this summer!

 

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I bought a rolling shell with a new motor and trans. No seats no dash parts or column. no wiring. Well any way I have bought and bought and bought parts. It does get frustrating But mine is starting to look like a car again. Still a long way to go but it is almost where i can drive it around in the yard. Just keep chipping away at it you will get there.
 
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