Author Topic: Value of '79 Trans Am k-code rusty  (Read 1042 times)

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Offline tpearson996

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Value of '79 Trans Am k-code rusty
« on: October 31, 2016, 05:18:06 PM »
Tried making an account over at Trans Am Country but I guess their site is down lol so anyway hello all.

I work for a tire shop out in the country. Southern Idaho. I was out fixing a tractor tire one day and drove past a farm and saw a neat old trans am just sitting out in the open. Caught my eye immediately, white with snowflake wheels, just gorgeous.

I went up to the house a few days later and asked about it, the man who owns it wasn't there but his wife says he wants to sell it. I gave her my number for him to call but he hasn't in over a week. Got to thinking about it and I don't know how much these are worth.

I got the vin off the car, it's a 1979, k code 403. T-top. Passenger side door is extremely dented, there's little rust spots all over. Hole in the windshield, hood scoop is gone and he has a coffee can over the carb with a cement block on top of it. Who knows how long it's been sitting, so there's definitely been some rain and moisture gotten into the interior through the windshield, and I don't know how effectively a can and block can protect an engine lol.

Down here in Idaho we have some pretty hot summers, but it can get wet and cold in the fall and winter seasons.

I want to know how much I should offer for it. I don't plan on doing too much to fix it up, I'm wanting to build a tough little 383, get a good tranny, some subframe connectors and beefing up the rear end. Fix up the interior a bit and keep the exterior rusty, make it a sleeper to putt around in.

Ita not letting me attach images with my phone but I think all you need to know is it's been out in the weather for god knows how long, the engine is kind of exposed, interior exposed, pretty rusty. If you need pictures I'll try again.

According to the vin, not a rare model at all, it's one of the ones that was most manufactured.

Any opinions? Thanks.


Offline Aus78Formula

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Re: Value of '79 Trans Am k-code rusty
« Reply #1 on: November 01, 2016, 12:38:07 AM »
If rusty already, then what you can't see is likely to be worse. And given that it's been parked in the open for years, it's obviously of little value to them even when better condition. Offer to tow it away. The engine is ruined, likely, and if tossing it then doesn't matter, likewise the missing scoop is of no use on a chev engine. So yes, I'd say it has next to no value in condition you report. By acting too keen they are already increasing what they thought they get rid of it for. Turn up with a trailer and point out nothing but the terrible points, could take a while. Could build a tough little 403 but I guess you already know you wanted to follow the crowd.
« Last Edit: November 01, 2016, 12:39:44 AM by Aus78Formula »

Offline tpearson996

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Re: Value of '79 Trans Am k-code rusty
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2016, 01:39:04 AM »
Thanks for the reply, good to know I don't need to offer much. Like I said, I'm not going to work too hard on making it pretty. Don't know what you mean by "follow the crowd though  ;D

Offline Aus78Formula

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Re: Value of '79 Trans Am k-code rusty
« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2016, 01:55:49 AM »
Yep, as you can imagine, the body is rusty, it has leaky t-tops, so the interior is also rusty and mouldy and sun damaged. When you repair these pieces you replace them so damaged pieces have next to no value to any one generally. The engine and electrical and any mechanical parts are likely also in need of replacement or rebuild so no real value there either. At the end of the day, the main value is if it still has original motor and pieces, which it may not, and even if it does, is just a 'nice to have' feature at times. But if you plan to replace, then that has no value to you either and limited when parted. So offer what you would for a rusty shell with pieces that you need to strip off and throw out. Of course that's not how I bought my own car, but should have!

Offline tpearson996

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Re: Value of '79 Trans Am k-code rusty
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2016, 02:18:10 AM »
Yes sir, I'll fix what needs fixing. Probably everything under the car, front end, rear end and suspension, besides the engine and drivetrain. Then new windshield obviously, new seals, goop up the t-tops real nice   ;D door hinges if I find they sit funny. Electronics, etc. make the interior bearable at least for awhile.

For a sleeper I don't need her to be pretty. She's pretty anyway, she caught my eye from a good distance away lol.

What do you expect I could get from selling the pulled engine and tranny, and maybe the rear end?

Offline Aus78Formula

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Re: Value of '79 Trans Am k-code rusty
« Reply #5 on: November 01, 2016, 04:52:14 AM »
Rear ratio is  probably the selling point, or what makes it limited in appeal, besides disc brakes.  The engine is likely no good, unless you can get it to kick over, it's just a core. But there's also Firebird specific brackets and similar that can be hard to track down. I'm not sure there's really a market for a running stock engine that is in unknown condition, no one will be looking for one to drop in like that, more the fact it isn't already junked or possibly has stock bores that make for a good candidate for rebuild. I'd hold onto it regardless in case plans change or the next guy chooses to rebuild it. It's worth more kept than the low amount you'd get for it.