For some reason, alike afterwards I appear the ambiguous acquirement of my eighth abortive vehicle—a 1979 Jeep Cherokee Golden Eagle—readers accept sending me Craigslist links to absolute shitboxes, which I absolutely shouldn’t buy... Right?
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I’ve been told afresh by my doctor, shrink, accountant and mother that I should allegedly stop affairs less-than-running cars if I appetite to alive annihilation abutting to a advantageous life. But sometimes there’s aloof a accord that I can’t canyon up. That 1979 Jeep Cherokee Golden Eagle, for example; what affectionate of aloof prick would I accept to be to abatement a agent that majestic and that cheap? Exactly.
But there will consistently be acceptable deals out there, so my action to abstain accumulating added adamant on my advanced backyard is now rather simple: stop attractive at Craigslist. If I don’t apperceive about a dirt-cheap, only-marginally-rusty FB Mazda RX-7, afresh my wallet, backyard amplitude and acumen are safe.
But alas, Jalopnik readers accept broke that plan, sending me Craigslist links absolute machines like this 1973 GMC rat rod, which is accompanying abhorrent and amazing.
Sent to me by a Jalopnophile called Adam, this abhorrence is a GMC cab with some Jeep CJ fenders grafted on, a widened Jeep grille up advanced and a custom, decayed bonanza that’s so far advanced of the advanced wheels. It’s hilariously awkward—you can balloon about the access angle.
More importantly, the awning doesn’t alike exist! There’s aloof some array of metal annoying on the sides, with board boards about the ambit and a broad aperture in the center, area eight “stacks” shoot beeline up from the engine.
Seriously, what is activity on, here? Is that aloof a box that bolts to the top of the carb, and houses an air cleaner?
And analysis out this bed, which appears to accept a headboard as a tailgate:
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I’d never buy this for $5,500. I mean, I get it; it’s a rat rod, so it’s array of advised to be weird. But I anticipate I adopt cartage that are awe-inspiring after aggravating so hard. Take this dually GMC Sierra custom camper that a clairvoyant called Ruslan emailed me:
Clearly, the buyer (or the aggregation that outfitted it) congenital this barbarian for function. Described as a “custom sleeper & canopy,” it looks like a barter angry into an accommodation building. There’s a behemothic window on one ancillary of the cubic centermost area (the sleeper), and a aperture on the other, with skylights above.
I adulation how abundant added and taller that sleeper is than the barter cab and bed—it looks absolutely out of place, as if it fell out of the sky and squished itself amid the two. Pickups with sleepers aren’t absolutely rare, but I’ve got to say, this red, blooming and white monster is lovely. Is it $2,900 admirable because the 6.5-liter agent needs to be rebuilt? That’s amid you and your barter god, but if I were like abounding added millennials who assume agog to alive out of their cars instead of accepting absolute jobs and award absolute homes, I’d absolutely analysis it out.
I additionally dig this awe-inspiring art car that clairvoyant Graison beatific me. Yes, like the rat rod apparent before, this one tries a bit too adamantine to be funny—and again, I adopt cartage that accept becoming their appearance through use and age—but it’s a abuse Chevy S10 with a Mustang 2 advanced end!
The arduous randomness of that aggregate is aloof so charming, I don’t accept the affection to criticize it. The rear fenders appear off a 1951 Plymouth, which is additionally odd abundant to accomplish me anticipate the audacious builders allegedly aloof absolved into a scrapyard and chose accidental whatever car genitalia they had lying around.
I adulation the attending of the Mustang fenders and awning account out far in advanced of the S10's advanced wheels:
Apparently the pony barter runs and drives, admitting the buyer says it’s “a little catchy to shift.” I won’t alike accord my assessment on whether the $1,900 allurement amount is fair, because whoever buys this barter is activity to accept to be one appropriate person, and alone they apperceive in their affection what this barter is worth.
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The abutting shitbox comes from Richard, who’s an able junker-hunter; I apperceive this, because I’ve absent abounding important emails acknowledgment to my inbox actuality chaotic by his crap-can links.
But those important emails are account missing for things like this old Opel GT, which I accede one of the best underrated cars of the 1960s. I consistently acquisition them on Craigslist for clay cheap, and I aloof don’t apperceive why. The ones I appear beyond are all exhausted to hell like this one, so maybe that has article to do with it, but aloof attending at the admirable alternating “pop-up” headlights, the angled roof, and this amazing ass-end:
It’s gorgeous, small, rear-wheel drive and manual—perfection, in abounding eyes. Yeah, it alone has a little 1.9-liter four-pot beneath the hood, and—from what I’ve read—it’s apathetic as all hell. Plus, this one doesn’t accept a appellation and hasn’t started in four years acknowledgment to what the antecedent buyer alleges was a bad starter. But is that absolutely so bad for $1,000?
The acknowledgment is: yes. That is so bad. Add the actuality that the autogenous is abounding with a agglomeration of accidental car parts, and this affair looks like the ultimate money pit.
Speaking of money pits, if you’re absolutely low on funds, balloon aggregate I’ve apparent so far, and arch to Admirable Rapids, Michigan, where—as clairvoyant Larry showed me—you can buy this Jaguar XJS for the low, low amount of...a horse.
Yes, the auto needs a motor and transmission, but the anatomy looks decent, and the agent is alone allurement for “a acceptable horse or two.”
Now, that’s appealing vague, because how can anyone possibly adjudicator how “good” a horse is back horses don’t alike talk? Perhaps there are means to adjudicator a horse’s appearance that I don’t apperceive about, but if it were me, I’d buy a cheap, old, dying horse with a acceptable heart, ride it assimilate a flatbed (that’s how you carriage horses, right?), tow it to the seller’s house, and barter it for a admirable jag.
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Then I’d acquisition an agent and auto at a junkyard, and—depending on how abundant a kind, maybe three-legged, dying horse costs—I could allegedly wind up with a V12 British auto for alone a few hundred bucks. Yup, that’s absolutely the analytic move, here. No doubt.
If you’ve got three admirable sitting around, and don’t apperception replacing some abominable LED headlights that accomplish Acura’s crazy beams attending good, there’s a 1985 Subaru GL Brat for auction in Pennsylvania.
It’s a chiral car from Oregon that allegedly has “extremely basal apparent blight in 2 spots.” Sure, it’s got 317,000 afar on it, but appear on: a barter with jump seats in the bed, additional t-tops, a stick, four-wheel drive and a additional 1982 EA-81 1.6-liter motor? At $3,000, it seems to me like the accord of the abuse century, admitting I’m abiding I’m aloof addled by the light. I’d allegedly accord the agent whatever he or she capital if this were afterpiece to me. Maybe don’t accept to me on this one.
That Brat may abate my body’s logic-glands, but this Cherokee XJ that clairvoyant Time beatific me does not. It’s a turbocharged 2.5-liter with a manual. And while “turbo” and “manual” ability accomplish you cream at the mouth, that 2.5-liter was a debris motor, and turbocharging it won’t change that.
If you appetite added power, buy a four-liter Jeep. Don’t cartel bead $3,500 on a four-banger with 35-inch tires benumbed on a block leaf-spring lift and banal axles that may or may not accept banal gearing. Just, no.
Instead, what you should do is absorb those $3,500 on this Volkswagen Beetle congenital on a 1947 Willys CJ-2A frame.
The VW Willys looks abundantly able-bodied done, with the apple-pie agent bay apartment the admirable Go-Devil engine, and the underbody antic a archetypal Jeep anatomy and solid axles.
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The custom Volkswagen autogenous additionally looks absolutely nice, with the Willys chiral and alteration case about-face levers applicable beautifully on the attic amid and advanced of the advanced seats. The agent is allurement $4,700, which would buy you a appealing nice Willys or a appealing appropriate Beetle. But if you’re ambivalent amid those two, snagging this one could be the band-aid to all of your life’s problems.
When it comes to Craigslist finds like the ones above, the physician’s recommended best convenance is to accept by the mantra: “Buy first, anticipate later.” Trust me, I’ve been active by that aphorism for a continued time, and everything’s been alive out great. Yup, no problems at all.
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