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The Cavalier

Wes

Founder & Admin
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🌸 FM of Yamatai
🎖️ Game Master
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As many of you know, on April 20 I was in a car accident where I was taking a left and some young guy with a Dodge Charger (having more horsepower and less patience, I guess) came up and tried to pass me and the utility truck behind me on the other side of the road, resulting in my front left corner of my car getting hit. Thankfully there were no injuries, but I'm not a rich dude and my car was a cheap old Chevy Cavalier which means the value is low in the eyes of the insurance company, which declared my car a total loss, paid me a couple thousand, and hauled it off. With help from my deal-hunter mom, I got a new car that's decent and way nicer then the old Cavalier. You'd think this would be the end of it...but maybe not.

Out of curiosity, I tracked and found where the old car ended up, which is in a nearby salvage yard, where it was being sold under a salvage title in an auction. There was no minimum bid. No one else had bid on it. The car seems like it could be repaired fairly easily to be drivable, and it's available cheap at auction, and the parts are cheap. I know more about the car than any other bidder, like that it has a good engine, good interior, etc. A plan started to form in my head...what if I just bought the old car back cheap and fixed it up over time as my beater/backup car? Since I have a new car already I could take my time and spread out the expenses so I could afford it. I might even be able to do it for well under $1000.

I was wondering if some of you guys are into car repair or car buying and are interested in seeing more of this story. If so, I can go into more detail about how the post-accident claims process worked, how I'm hoping to get the car back, and how to fix the damage, and how to get a "rebuilt" car title. Also, this thread is going to be my notes to self where I post useful stuff I found like links to the car parts I need, YouTube videos on how to fix the damage, etc.
 

Wes

Founder & Admin
Staff Member
🌸 FM of Yamatai
🎖️ Game Master
🎨 Media Gallery
The Damage

20210420_130131.jpg

So it looks like the damage is:
  • Left fender
  • Front bumper fascia
  • Energy absorber (styrofoam bumper filling)
  • Left headlight
  • Possible strut/Wheel alignment
  • Please not the axle lol
 

Wes

Founder & Admin
Staff Member
🌸 FM of Yamatai
🎖️ Game Master
🎨 Media Gallery
I'm trying to basically do this as cheap as possible. This is not trying to create a perfect example of the car, I just need it to be safe. If I can order parts and install them myself, I'd like to do that.

Here's some helpful looking videos I found:


 

Wes

Founder & Admin
Staff Member
🌸 FM of Yamatai
🎖️ Game Master
🎨 Media Gallery
Copart is a huge multi-national company that primarily operates large lots of salvage vehicles and auctions them off, primarily to I guess businesses who fix cars and/or source car parts. After the insurance company totaled my car, I had to send the car title to Copart to get my payment from the other guy's insurance company (AAA). In the paperwork for that there was a lot number, and I went to Copart's website and sure enough, there was my car, sitting in the salvage yard.

Okay, so if you want to fix your wrecked car, and have the means to do so, don't do what I did and lose the car to the insurance company. If I want my car back I have to win it at auction and there's fees and crap associated with that. But you still see some cars sold at Amazing prices. Basically Copart is close to dumpster diving for cars. There's horribly wrecked cars, cars with trash or syringes in them, cars that mice destroyed, and cars with insane odometer readings. But you can also find some diamonds in the crap. In the case of my car, I know it's a good car with a fine engine, which gives me an advantage. But at the same time, the reason the car is there is the nominal repair costs are higher than the value of the car. After watching cars sell I think my old Cavalier will sell for around $350 at auction, so let's break down the costs:
So the pre-repair costs are likely to be $708

And after the car is repaired it will need:
  • $100 inspection fee (unless I use the free government one that takes weeks)
  • $118 registration fee
So, parts and labor aside, that's $968, which is not bad for a working driving car.

Trying to figure out the cost of repairs, though...
  • Washer fluid reservoir: $119
  • Front fascia $159 (Amazon)
  • Absorber $40 (Amazon)
  • Fender: $100 (Amazon, when it's available)
  • Fender liner: Holy shit, less than $2 on Amazon
  • Headlights: $40 each (2)
Parts Total: $420

So far we're looking at $1468, potentially higher if there's strut damage or if someone else really wants the car.

As for labor, I'm hoping to do a lot of it myself. Honestly it looks pretty straightforward and I've always wanted to fix a car (even if body work on a bunch of plastic panels wasn't exactly what I had in mind). Then I got to take it into for SOME sort of work at a certified rebuilder for legal purposes (fix struts, align wheels etc).

Does that look reasonable or should I just let it go?
 

Commissar Farzi

Well-Known Member
Honestly, I don't think it'd be worth sinking the time, effort and money into hoss.

And why are you posting this here? Shouldn't this be on Craigslist?

Also: Vroom Vroom.
 
Last edited:

demibear

Staff Member
🎖️ Game Master
Character Forum Mod
It might be worth the effort if you can sell it for a higher price in this chip shortage market. But honestly, I would just let her sail the car river styx and be someone else's problem.
 
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