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Should I invest in a paint job?


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I'm a newby, so please be patient with me.


I have a 1993 Del Sol S, base model, automatic, no options, 139,000 miles. Mechanically, no problems. Still runs like a top. The car is completely stock. There's only one small spot of rust on the underside of the passenger's side rear wheel well. The interior is in great shape. Sure, the seats and carpet are a bit worn, but no splits, stains, rips, tears, etc. The rest of the interior looks showroom new. The exterior's finish, however, is bad. I took the winter cover off the car a couple of weeks ago and found that the clearcoat is popping-off all over the hood and trunk.


I contacted a local guy who has painted several classic cars for the show circuit. He has a superb reputation. He works out of a home garage with a full set of equipment and a hoist. He will give the car a new paint job - a simple black - for $3,200 as a "winter project" to keep him busy. He refers to the prospective paint job as "show quality".


So the big question is: Do I invest the money? Or sell the car for what I can get, then buy another with original paint and in great shape? Or just give it up because I'll never get insurance to cover $5,000 or so ($3,200 for the paint job + the car's estimated current "for-sale-sign" value of $1800) on a 1993 car?


I do love the car (and adore Hondas in general) but am not a rich guy by any means. This is a HUGE expense for me. Also, I have no idea what an appraiser would book the car at with the new paint job. Any opinions are appreciated more than you know! -Bob

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Honestly, no car is worth $3200 in paint alone unless it is a show car. Chances are a generous portion of his cost should be to fix the rust. Keep in mind that civics/del sols rust from the inside on the rear wheel wells. So if you see rust then it is considerably worse then what you can see. If his price is not to fix the rust then that price is going to go through the roof.


You will be hard pressed to find any del sol with good quality factory paint since the newest del sol on the road is still a 14 year old car now, especially living in a midwest state same as I do. Midwest winters tear up these 90's hondas.


If his price included cutting out BOTH rear wheel wells and fully replacing the sheet metal - no filler, then the $3200 price is seems pretty fair if he really is good. If you really love your car and plan on keeping it then the money spent will not be wasted. If you have him document his work and record pictures your car is worth more then what KBB says it is. Del sol values for cars in quality condition vastly exceed book prices. A simple method to insure your vehicle is to ask the insurance company to value it based on locally available replacements: i.e. 0 rust del sols with perfect paint and low miles. they won't find anything.


Sorry for the long winded response.

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i never crashed this one, bought it that way :) and havent had a single problem since i left the east coast, i think they hand out licenses there via cereal boxes.

(knocks on wood)

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