View Full Version : Opinions WANTED: Nearing Fork in the Road

02-05-2010, 03:34 PM
First of all, I am not happy about this decision, as I have been working rather diligently the past year and half toward this project, and I have hit the inevitable fork in the road. So I am going to try and make the most out of the situation, and let you guys debate what I do with what I got.

Basically, I need to get out of the university and get a job for the next year and continue saving for grad school. My bank, the school and the government have worked tirelessly to screw me out of my hard earned pay. Thank you shit economy, I like having my credit limit yanked out from under me.

I picked up a GT-S for about $500 that was running rough, rusted out rockers, loose sway bar, shit wheels, and one working headlight with only 150k miles. $200 for a new headlight motor, oxygen sensor, sway mounts, Toyota side-skirts and fiberglass has her running fine. Throw in that it's a hatchback, with a working sunroof, climate control, nice bucket seats, ABS, power assisted rear breaking and has an All-Trac hood; I can't just let it go. Even if reselling will be much higher then the initial $700 put in.

So here is the dilemma, I was prepping the GT-S for V6 3VZ-FE surgery, I have all the parts sourced and priced. It is now too risky to proceed with this. If something goes wrong, which is the case with any project, I'm further up shit creek. Worse still, I am using my broken off antenna for a paddle.

It also looks likely that I'll be heading back west to California for either school or work. My GT is in fabulous condition, as I was planning on selling her after the frankenstein project. But at 227,000 miles, I am asking for trouble. Engine is newer, but pretty much EVERYTHING else is original. My steering pump is slowly making my car sound like an old WWII deuce-and-a-half.

Here are the options I have presented to myself:

ONE) Sell the GT-S. I figure I can at least, at LEAST, get $1,800 after I paint and clean her. Then I pray my GT limps another few thousand miles west. After all, she put up with 2,800 miles in 4 days over New Years...

TWO) Inject the GT-S with yamaha steroids and hope I win the lottery to complete the project. Sure California will terminate me for driving a unique setup, even if the gas mileage is better, and the engine newer. I can sell my GT for probably about the same price, and I'll have another few years of tinkering on a ticking rust time bomb without proper care.

THREE) Swap GT-S parts onto the GT, upgrade what I need on the GT, and sell the GT-S. A rust free body with some GT-S bonuses, is better then no money and a dead project right? Bigger fog lights, a vented hood, climate control and bucket seats look right at home on a coupe.

FOUR) Upgrade the GT-S for cheap. Spend maybe $1,000 on suspension, new transmission and body work. I can take things off my GT and then sell it as a great, rust free car with almost 230k!

FIVE) Sell both cars and drive a questionably clean All-Trac that will not get proper care because of budget.

SIX)Duct tape both cars together like Red Green and make my own "Hummer".
Red Green makes a Hummer out of two cars. (http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x7x3ui_red-green-makes-a-hummer_fun)

SEVEN) Sell both cars, hitchhike, and become another story for Keith Morrison on Dateline

EIGHT) Sell both cars, and buy a 1984 Porsche 944 Turbo, from the year I was born, like I should have done 2 years ago when I had to choose between Toyota reliability and the sexiest $1,200 car I have EVER seen. Yes, it was red, with tan leather interior. I just knew, I would never have the money to keep a "classic" car. Insurance sucks when you're under 25... Now that I'm older...

NINE) Electrical fires? Insurance fraud? You must be joking, right?

TEN) Glue on an invader body kit to the GT-S, paint an old coffee can chrome, use it as my exhaust tip, and krylon touch my vinyl interior, oh let's say, yellow. Can I get a holla for my glowing rust underbody?! I'll then shave a pattern into my hair, and hit on cougars at Lane Bryant. I'll rebadge the car GT-Sex and stare longingly at it from outside the fence at the city impound.

ELEVEN) Not sure, ask again later


THIRTEEN) You decide...


02-05-2010, 05:23 PM
GT-s final answer!

02-05-2010, 08:58 PM

02-05-2010, 09:48 PM
ONE) The second best option imho. But you may want to fix your known issues before they become worse...

TWO) In my experience hoping to win the lottery is not a good strategy.

THREE) Sounds like a lot of work.

FOUR) This is viable, and leaves the door open for a V6 swap when you are ready.

FIVE) Possible, but it pulls in a 3rd car with unknown condition. Is an alltrac the dream car?

SIX) Sounds interesting...

SEVEN) Or buy a bicycle

EIGHT) lol, if you thought maintenance was bad on the Toyotas...

NINE) err....


ELEVEN) Is time on your side?



02-05-2010, 10:29 PM
That gave me a good laugh.

Not too sure what you should do though, I hate rust and don't really care for coupes.

I say sell one and use the money to swap in a 3SGTE with the other.

02-06-2010, 09:59 AM
Sell both and buy something you dont want to fix up and will make a long drive(Civic, Protege, Corolla, Yugo????). The reason I say that is cause then you cant get yourself in trouble later financially and you will have something reliable to get around in.

The thing is, finding another GT-S may be difficult, but not impossible, so cut the losses now and re-attempt when in a better spot.

Just my 2 cents.

The Captain
02-06-2010, 02:13 PM
Fourteen: Sell both, buy basic reliable cheap transportation. Go back to school, then get a job that pays big bucks, buy Princess for $25,000. Done.

Personally, I don't buy anything with rust. Craigslist has 'em all the time. Search southern states. While GTS's are cool, an alltrac is a better investment over time. There out there if you look. For know I'd keep the most reliable one.

02-06-2010, 08:08 PM
I would sell both and buy something reliable and newer, then get a project later when you have the funds/space/time for the project once again and buy what you want.

02-06-2010, 08:15 PM
Chaos and I had a real close 'come to Jesus' meeting several years ago. However, she still ran, and she got my entire family (me, the wife and the Booger) where we needed to go. As such, she more than earned her place in our lives.

That is why now, even though I have other cars that are more comfortable and/or more powerful, Chaos is the apple of my eye.

Ask yourself, does either of your cars hold that spot for you, or is it just the 'Celica' nameplate?

If it is the car itself, make it work.

If it is the Celica nameplate, sell them, buy something reliable, and then, after your life is settled and you can afford it, buy your project and allow it to become the apple of your eye.

02-07-2010, 01:21 AM
Personally, I don't buy anything with rust. Craigslist has 'em all the time. Search southern states. While GTS's are cool, an alltrac is a better investment over time. There out there if you look. For know I'd keep the most reliable one.

Honestly, my GT has been ridiculously reliable. I have put a ton of work into, not money, but work, and I know the platform inside and out now. It really seems strange to sell something I spent so much time working on, not something I spent a lot of cash on. I feel pretty confident in doing just about anything mechanical in the street, which is where a majority of the work has been done...

I hate rust as well, but I am ok with rust that doesn't involve major structural damage. Body rust, I can cut, clean out and weld in a fix. I have access to welding equipment, and I am a trained artist.

Eventually my education in architecture will pay off. I have lived all over the country, and I don't use my cars for commuting. They are for touring and joy rides. A few summers ago at 200k miles, my GT did the 7,000 foot climb over the mountains north of LA on the I-5. Blew up the mountain, breezing past much newer cars, scattered about, overheating. I have been really impressed with these little cars, they are not to be underestimated.

If and when I head back to California, hopefully in a couple months, I will be back to cruising the 101, the backroads in Monterey county, and scenic highway 1. I trust that both cars can make the trek from the work that has been done. I have two months. I will put some more work into the GT-S, before I make my final decision. If I find an All-Trac in that time, I will certainly pick up option FIVE. Especially after the reply from Import Tuner (http://www.celicatech.com/forums/showthread.php?t=45714).

02-11-2010, 01:13 AM
I've thought about this, and this silly underrated, overlooked platform, has been hella reliable, time and time again for me.

I have set a budget for my GT-S to make it tour-worthy for $1000. Anything extra must stay inside the budget of $1,500, my expected sale price for the GT. The GT really is in crazy nice condition for a car it's age. It's only two problems are a noisy power steering pump and lack of an AC conversion. Paint is fantastic, body is almost perfect, and there was only a little rust in the spare tire well. I of course neutralized that rust and primered it.

The motor only has 135k miles on it with all new sensors, hoses, belts and gaskets. When I sell it, it will have a new set of tires and 16" BBS RX II wheels refinished in grey. I am debating selling the All-Trac hood, as I feel having it in SoCal makes me a theft target...

If I strip the GT-S and find it to be a frightful mess, I will gladly sell both!

02-11-2010, 08:31 AM
never sell your ol faithful

ive done this thrice now with regret,

sold my 35 dollar truck, even though i made 1265 off of it im still kicking myslf for it

sold my camry, then my 91 stx blew a headgasket a month later,then a bunch other stuff went wrong

sold my corolla when i bought the 6th gen, i miss 4 doors but the 6th gen is nicer, but my rolla ran like it had a brand new engine or something in it, the 6th gen has its days, even though its getting better so this one is a toss up

02-11-2010, 08:56 AM
I agree; no real point in getting rid of someting that you know works and putting your faith in something you're leaving to chance. You've obviously proven the GT can make that kind of trip, and from the sound of it will probably last you longer.

02-12-2010, 04:37 AM
so yeah keep ol faithful or if u can keep both so u aint gotta start from scratch, if not keep the best one

case in point cannon sold his 6th gen to me, few months later his car craps out, later on craps a trans, meanwhile the only critcal things i replaced on this car is the alt, wheel bearing and battery but ive put 24,000 miles on the car in less than a year.

03-30-2010, 12:49 AM
Tomorrow beings the official GT-S project, phase I, restoration. I am getting some 22 gauge low-carbon sheet steel and brazing back on the rocker panels and missing body work. I'll open up a new project thread with this in there so I can keep it organized. Thanks again for all the feedback, this is going to be one hell of a summer!

Phase II will be reserved for the manual transaxle / radiator / brake upgrade.

Phase III will be V6 goodness.

Phase IV will be for twin turbo build / weight reduction.

Phase V will be for lambo doors / MASSIVE 6 foot wing.

I imagine I won't actually get to twin turboing this car, but we'll see how life treats me in the next few...

03-30-2010, 04:42 PM
Phase V will be for lambo doors / MASSIVE 6 foot wing.

This should be first, that'll add at least 50hp!

03-30-2010, 05:43 PM
Something like this HAS to add 100hp. AT LEAST.