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Weighing the pros and cons. Opinions wanted needed.

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    Weighing the pros and cons. Opinions wanted needed.

    Also ass kickings may apply if needed.

    Y'all seen me appear and disappear frankly because I'm a rollercoaster ride. I had a 2011 grand marquis that got fucked by a woman from Tennessee driving without insurance. My insurance company fucked me over so I got pennies on the dollar for it. (still made out ahead luckily enough but I still can't purchase what was lost damnit!) and right now I am unable to drive due to me having a concussion, and suffering the accident that happened on January 24th at 6:27 am. Yeah thats gonna be a date engrained into my memory.

    Anyways ramble and back story aside.

    I'm not panther less. However I got a car that is sitting there with a newer engine new exhaust. 1994 f150 motor h0 firing order with mustang fuel injectors. The car needs a new transmission, brakes and a harmonic balancer. I am wondering if a rusted car from this vintage is even worth saving or if I should cave in to what my family has been screaming at me just scrap the damn thing and get an aero like they want me to.

    Thoughts and opinions?

    Car guy side of me: How bad is the rust? Everything else good beside what you listed?

    Logic side of me: How bad do you really want to keep throwing money at a car that might not be worth the time?

    With what your car needs, it sounds like $1500-ish worth of work, depending on how involved you are in the repairs. Might be cheaper, might be more.

    I absolutely appreciate old cars, but sometimes there comes a day where you do have to ask yourself if it'll remain a reliable daily car. You need to be fair with yourself there. Sentimental attachment among other things make that hard, so your call is still your call. If you can swing two cars, find another Panther (or any car you like) that fits your budget and fix your Box properly. If you can't see what you can get out of your Box and put it towards your next vehicle purchase. A car you can fire up and trust to go wherever safely and reliably is important.

    My Cars:
    -1964 Comet 202 (116K Miles) - Long Term Project
    -1986 Dodge D-150 Royale SE (112K Miles) - Slowly Getting Put Back Together
    -1987 Grand Marquis Colony Park LS (325K Miles) - April 2017 + September 2019 POTM Winner
    -1997 Grand Marquis LS (240K Miles) - The Daily Workhorse & March 2015 + January 2019 POTM Winner


      Will it be a reliable car after the work you mentioned or is it unknown? Yes how rusty is rusty? What year?
      03 Marauder DBP, HS, 6disk, Organizer Mods> LED's in & Out, M&Z rear control arms, Oil deflector, U-Haul Trans Pan, Blue Fuzzy Dice
      02 SL500 Silver Arrow
      08 TC Signature Limited, HID's Mods>235/55-17 Z rated Cooper Zeon RS3-A, Addco 1" rear Sway, Posi, Compustar Remote Start, floor liners, trunk organizer, Two part Sun Visors, B&M Trans drain Plug, Winter=05 Mustang GT rims, Nokian Hakkapeliitta R-2 235/55-17
      08 Escape Limited V6 Auto, Beamtech LED headlight bulbs,


        I am sorry you lost your car in this accident and ended up with a serious health issue that I hope will not turn into a long term problem for you.

        The sad part is even if the other person had insurance they most likely would have been under insured like many people that drive along side of us everyday.

        At this point if I were you I would save up to fix what you have, but before you pull the trigger keep your head on a swivel looking for a affordable replacement car.

        If you like a box Panther better than the Aero stick to your guns and make it happen if at all possible.

        If your only option to drive a box is the box you own make a list of what time and money it will take to get your box in the condition where you will be happy with it.

        Find out just how bad this rust is and see if it is something you can fix on your own or at least address it where the rust will not continue to spread to structural pieces.

        If you can fix the Box just enough to make it road worthy this may buy you time while your searching for the right deal on something better.

        I had to bail on a low mileage 2000 MGM because of rust and other repairs that far exceeded my physical limitations and value of the car, unfortunately I hit eject button after spending-loosing way too much time and money on it.
        2007 Ford Crown Victoria LX Sport


          If you have the means (skills and money and time), and the current Box is structurally okay, I say fix what you have.

          If you don’t feel like messing with it, sell it and buy something else.
          1990 Country Squire - weekend cruiser, next project
          1988 Crown Vic LTD Wagon - waiting in the wings

          GMN Box Panther History
          Box Panther Horsepower and Torque Ratings
          Box Panther Production Numbers


            Rust is the worst thing one can fix on a car. With the cost of Panthers nowadays I'd just get another car.


              I view boxes more as classics as I get older. Unless it's been thoroughly gone through I wouldn't want to DD a box anymore. Hell even aeros can be sketchy DDers anymore. If no sentimental value to the box I'd say move on.
              Chris - A 20th Century Man \m/ ^.^ \m/


                the rust is cosmetic actually. The car is a 1986 and the engine I put in it is from a 1994 f-150 and I already put on headers a new exhaust and went with a Lincoln ECM for the HO firing order. The underside of the car is remarkably fine.. its just the rockers are starting to get holes and theres dents and stuff. Things that I have replaced on the car is a long list.
                Powersteering pump,
                Tires and rims.
                Fuel filter.
                Fuel pump (gave it a mustang racing pump because that was actually cheaper and could handle ethanol gas compared to a Chinese roll the dice pump)
                The 1994 f-150 engine (with 94k miles on it) was gone over with a true roller timing chain (after I saw the original engine had its original timing chain and some how lasted 220k miles without exploding) New gaskets, new plugs, new headers, and synthetic oil
                I also installed a new exhaust I welded up by taking an aftermarket replacement exhaust and combining it with half of a mustang H pipe to meet up with the headers. The result was a very quiet car. A bit Frankenstein but hey it worked great.
                I also put on a new starter after it stopped turning over but I know for certain its a damn cable that goes from the solenoid that goes to the battery.
                Oh yeah and the heater blower was the replaced.

                The transmission shifts lates but the fluid is off color and theres crap floating in it. I know it overheated when the original engine's timing advanced and it bent a rod. So I put an external cooler on the car for the transmission.

                Frankly if I had to throw money at it I'd get a suped up transmission From monster transmission throw in synthetic fluid and try to fix the damn body since thats what everybody is squawking at me about.

                Finding boxes here in MN is impossible. Actually finding any decent used car is nigh impossible, so its a matter of known versus UNKNOWN. I know what this car needs and since this box has the 302 and the AOD it means that finding parts meant for the hot rod/ Ford Mustang/muscle car crowd is a borderline joke.

                I am dismissing the idea of "You're putting more into it then its worth" because Frankly I could never sell this thing because nobody wants these damn things.
                I have a sentimental attachment because this car seldom let me down and even took on a deer at 60mph and only suffered a headlight bezel breaking.

                I religiously maintain my vehicles and I don't skimp out on crap because its not f*cking worth it.

                the box in my mind has the advantage of simplicity. No power windows. No traction control, no ABS. To most this is negatives but considering I know how to drive this car (been through blizzards and survived while everybody who was telling me I was going to die, ended up with in a ditch with their FWD cars)

                I don't know if its sentimental or the realization that I'll never be able to find another comfortable full on frame, RWD, V8 car with disc brakes, manual windows, Fuel injection, and only power steering. I'll give it a good look over and try to pry myself from the sentimental gambit that I am battling.

                Either way I won't be driving for awhile and I am getting money from both my insurance company AND my short term disability from work.

                I inspected everything and the car is solid. Just the only thing I need to really figure out is how to deal with the dents and missing granny trim... which is tough because finding that trim is impossible.


                  Ugly & dented cars make people think twice about hitting you, maybe they think, holy shite this guy's got nothing to lose! Sometimes drivers are more polite and let you in on the freeway (as long as you demonstrate you have a working gas pedal and aren't going to hold them up at all)

                  Don't bother fixing the rust. Fix the car and drive it when you're cleared to drive and healthy, and then keep your eye out for a body swap candidate. Seriously, some cars end up with rusty frames and the bodies (while not perfect, actually look decent). Or somebody loses the grommet on the transmission cable, burns up O/D, and you can buy those cars all day long for $500-1000.

                  You could eventually end up finding a no-rust gorgeous '80-87 or even an '88-91 body to swap on (and replace the body mount bushings at the same time). It might not be as expensive as you'd think.
                  Slicktop '91 GS HO 4.30 rear. '82 Mark VI Tudor HO, '90 F-150 XLT, '62 project Heep, '89 Arizona Waggin' and '88 donor in PA, getting combined.


                    So it sounds like your current config isn't terrible, and was in running order before you got your other car. Best part is, you know what you've already done and you're familiar with the car, so working on it is easier.

                    Rebuild the AOD (toss a wide ratio kit in there for a bit more go off the line), fix the brakes, and put a balancer on. Ignore the cosmetics for a while. I'm sure it could be considerably worse compared to some shitheaps I see rolling around.

                    My Cars:
                    -1964 Comet 202 (116K Miles) - Long Term Project
                    -1986 Dodge D-150 Royale SE (112K Miles) - Slowly Getting Put Back Together
                    -1987 Grand Marquis Colony Park LS (325K Miles) - April 2017 + September 2019 POTM Winner
                    -1997 Grand Marquis LS (240K Miles) - The Daily Workhorse & March 2015 + January 2019 POTM Winner