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My Little Woody Willy - How to save thousands a year.

Get your mind out of the gutter. This is about my 1951 Willys steel woody wagon.

SSo here are the facts. If you have a regular car with a regular insurance company than you insure your classic with full insurance for very little a year. In my case It cost me only $226 a YEAR with one of the two classic Insurers. No restrictions. I have included the PDF of the quote so you can see the actual coverage and cost. Basically it has to be your second or more family vehicle. You chose the value and coverage and that is what you are rated at. When I joined the local car club I was amazed that many of the 300 members drove what are called RetroRods full time. These are older cars that have been retrofitted with Power steering, brakes modern engines, AC etc. These vehicles can also already have those things. Such as 60s chevy etc.
So you can save thousands on insurance and have a vehicle that APPRECIATES in value. It also typically costs less to fix. So the car club members have a bare min insured modern car with lets say State farm. Many don't even drive them. They then have one or more classics up north and down here. Some trade or sell and buy different ones for fun every so often. Sure you could get caught up in spending way too much on the vehicle or be smart and buy one some classic restorer has spent way too much on and sells it as a loss. You can see from my pics that the Willys is not a show car but my daily driver. It has a 70s olds lower front end. You know 8 cyc, automatic, PW steering PW brakes. I paid about 3k and have about 2k more in it. I insured it for 7k. It is worth about 10k. I will up the value this year to 12k.
If you are thinking of doing this I recommend you join the local car club. Ask for advice from the kinda folks that drive what you may want. The whole insurance thing changes when the vehicle is about 30k. There are no restrictions. Oh yeah the registration is under $50 a year too. Don't be dumb and buy a muscle car and get 8 miles a gallon. I live 10 mins from work but I have driven the Willys 150 miles in one trip many times. I put a real nice hitch on it and pull all sorts of stuff. I also have a small carb and get decent millage. I just wish it had a better trans for better millage. It doesn't have any safety equip but a 70s or newer vehicle will.
You should be able to click on the images and get a larger one.

I spent some money on dressing up the engine area and on the suspension. I also changed to headers (better millage) and smithy mufflers. It sounds great but not loud. I also have a local mechanic that knows everything about these old cars and is cheap to fix things. This isn't my first rodeo. I have owned several 50s chevys cars and trucks. A 47 Hudson truck and an old Porsche. My next vehicle will be a convertible for fun drives. And if I ever get rich than my dream vehicle is a 36 terraplane convertible. One of the most beautiful things ever made.

Tell me if this doesn't get your juices flowing.

If anyone knows more about this whole insurance thing please post it.

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Comment by M Cosmo on October 14, 2010 at 2:23pm
Gus. I think you should check with Hagerty Insurance for your classics. My chevy truck was 200+ with state farm and it would have only been 129 with Hagerty for better insurance. State farm valued the truck at a few hundred. and Hagerty at what I set of 8k. Oh yeah I wish I had that 52 benz. Check out an vintage Chevy Apache truck with a retro rod engine. It might just be the ticket.
Comment by Gus Cabrera on October 14, 2010 at 10:30am
When we first came to this country, we rode the bus. The first car my Dad bought was a 1948 Ford, 2-door Coupe in perfect condition. That was in 1955. He paid $50.00 for it (no misprint). He then bought a Pontiac station wagon circa 1950 figuring it was better suited for a family of 4 soon to be 5. After that it was a 1954 Ford station wagon with a V-8 engine followed by a 1958 Chevy Biscayne with air-conditioning. The last classic car was a Pontiac Tempest. After that we bought a 1952 Dodge pickup. I personally owned a 1968 Chevy Biscayne (I think), a 1952 Mercedez Benz (still kick myself for selling it) and a 1980 Volvo station wagon that was a few years from becoming a classic.
As for saving on insurance, we decided to self-insure the casualty part since we can replace either of our vehicles with about $3,000 for one and maybe $8,000 for the other so we only carry liability and medical. This costs us $266.00 per month compared to the $450.00 per month we used to pay. The high cost has to do with moving violations that were not supposed to be flagged due to not going to court, but the authorities did it anyway. It may also have to do with being in the New Orleans Area-high crime rates, hurricanes, potential flooding, etc. If it were not for the fact that I have to have my F150 V-8, I would definitely downsize as to vehicle and I love the idea of a classic of some sorts. It never ocurred to me to retrofit older vehicles with new engines, etc. I also really like the idea of joining an auto club. Good job Michael.
Comment by Earl ward on October 8, 2010 at 4:53pm
nice I have a 68 mercedes 200 D just waiting for me to spend to much on. one obsession at a time.

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