restoration humour


My rearend needs a stud and two nuts.
Founding Member
Feb 26, 2002
North Carolina
Classified Ad Translator

Here is a guide to help you decode the real truth behind those classified car ads.

"What the ad says" - "What it actually means."

Must sell - Before it blows up.

Many new parts - I'm sick of dumping money into this broken down heap.

Appraised at $29,000 - By me.

Frame-off Restoration - The body actually rusted right off the frame.

Needs Front-End Alignment - Some serious frame-straightening wouldn't hurt either.

Same Owner For Last 20 Years - I'd never dream of selling it unless it was as bad as it is.

Must See To Appreciate - It's a scientific mystery as to how a car with bad valves, a cracked block, and no bands left in the transmission can still get to the end of the driveway and back.

Needs Minor Work - Needs significant work.

Needs Nothing - Except a tow truck.

All Original - Except for the tunnel ram intake, Pro Stock hoodscoop, KMart sunroof, fender flares by Bondo, Krylon paint job, hurky air shocks, mohair upholstery, Pep Boy stereo, and pawn shop wheels.

Ready To Restore - After 8 years of abuse on the drag strip and 20 years in a yield exposed to the elements, it is ready to be restored.

Easy Project Car - Completely disassembled, bring boxes!

Minor Rust - Don't sit down!

Minor Rust - Major rust you can’t see.

Minor Rust - I though I had it all covered with bondo, but you can still see some rust.

Low Mileage - Only 170,000.

Faster than a 'Vette - A Chevette.

Convertible - After driving under truck.

Runs Great - Too bad it doesn’t roll.

Third Owner - To see the light and get rid of this piece of junk.

Nice Stereo - To overcome exhaust noise.

Good Investment - Can't be worth much less.

California Car - And has been since it arrived from Cleveland three weeks ago.

Numbers-Matching - The price in my ad matches the number of dollars I'd like to get for it.

Original Hemi Engine - Just installed it last week.

Authentic - To bad the VIN doesn't match up.

Fast - Compared to a Geo Metro.

Looks Great - In dim light.

Always Garaged - That's because it would never run long enough for me to get it out of the garage.

Needs Paint - To cover rust.

New Paint - Beautifully covers rust.

Solid as a rock - Rusted solid

Clean - I will vacuum up the 6 month old French Fries 10 minutes before you see the car.

Over $20,000 Invested - And that was just to get it to run.

Restored, With 0 Miles - Won't start.

Restored, With 2 Miles - Won't stay running.

Older Restoration - First owner washed it.

One Owner - I couldn't even give it away.

Fully Loaded - Seller is too.

All Options - 8-track player.

95% Complete - Can't find the other 5%.

95% Complete - Everything except the engine.

Low Miles - Ever since the odometer was turned back.

Only 59,000 Miles - Actually 359,000 miles.

Rare Model - One of only 500,000 made.

Good Transportation - It's ugly as sin.

Must Sell - Before the law finds seller.

Must Sell - Need bail money.

Must Sell - My wife just bought new furniture; again.

Sure to Appreciate - Yeah, that's why I'm selling it.

Summer Fun - Roof leaks in winter.

Summer Fun - Won't make it to fall.

Reliable - Don't leave the neighborhood.

Clean - Homeless dude at 5th and Main did the windows.

Runs fine - I was going to say "runs excellent" but I had a last minute attack of conscience.

Daily Driver - 400 miles a day.

Only Driven Sundays - Sunday is race day.

Engine Rebuilt - Engine degreased to look it.

Doesn’t Smoke - No oil to burn, or 90wt oil.

Trans. Rebuilt - Fine sawdust used to make it quiet.

4 Speed Gearbox - 5th gear is dead.

Engine Blueprinted - I don't know what that means either.

Hurry, Won't Last - Neither will the car.

Needs some body work - Was side-swiped by a Winnebago.

New Tires - Retreads years ago.

Or Best Offer - I'm guessing at the price here.

Well Maintained - I occasionally changed the oil.

Well Maintained - Oil changed every other leap year.

Drives Like a Dream - A nightmare.

No Time To Restore It - Can't find the parts.

Never Smoked In - Unfortunately, that's the best thing I can say about it.

Needs Minor Repair - Doesn't run.

Needs Minor Overhaul - Needs engine.

Needs Major Overhaul - Phone the junkyard.

Car Cover - To help keep out rats.

Always Garaged - Embarrassed to leave it outside.

Looks like new - Just don't try to drive it anywhere.

Rough Condition - Too bad to lie about.

Family Owned - Driven by 6 teenagers.

Restoration Started - The rest of the car has been in boxes since 1992.

Fully Restored - Nothing original.

All Original - I never had anything fixed, adjusted, or replaced.

Desireable Classic - No one wants it.

Rare Classic - No one wanted it, even when it was new.

Stored 20 Years - In a farmer's field.

Ran When Stored - But doesn't start now.

Never Apart - Bolts too rounded to loosen.

Smog Exempt - DMV doesn't think so.

Tags Till Next Year - Stolen year sticker.

Excellent Gas Mileage - It's slow.

Project Car - I can't figure out how to finish it, and I doubt you will either.

Moving, Must Sell - Off to jail, need bail money.

No Disappointments - Once you hand me the cash, I promise I won't be disappointed.

Loaded with Options - None of them work.

Loaded with Options - Each one more troublesome than the last.

Burns No Oil - It all leaks out.

Rebuilt Engine - Cleaned the spark plugs.

Drive It Away - I live on a hill.

Drive It Anywhere - Within 10 miles.

Rare Option - Because the factory never offered it.

Motivated Seller - Motivated to get the hell out of town.

Lots of Potential - To drive you insane.

Engine Quite - Uses 90-weight oil.

Parts Car - Beyond repair.

Immaculate - Recently washed.

Concours Condition - Recently waxed.

95 Point Car - You think that is impressive, you should see the points on my driving record.

Show Winner - Once got third place in the 1983 Eastern Iowa Star Trek Convention - but that was before the rust got really bad.

Other Interests Conflict - Spouse's ultimatum: "Either that #!!@&## thing goes or I do!"

Ten Commandments For The Car Collector

1. Thou shalt not read thy Hemmings on company time, lest thy employer make it impossible to continue thy car payments.
2. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's car nor his garage, nor his battery charger.
3. Thou shalt not store thy car out-of-doors except for the wife's Toyota.
4. Thou shalt not deceive thy wife into thinking that thee is taking her for a romantic Sunday drive when indeed thou art going out to look at another car.
5. Thou shalt not love thy cars more than thy wife and children.
6. Thou shalt not despise thy neighbor's Edsel, nor his DeSoto, nor even his '47 Plymouth.
7. Thou shalt not tell thy spouse the entire cost of thy latest restoration, at least not all at the same time.
8. Thou shalt not promise thy wife a new addition for the house and then use it to store cars.
9. Thou shalt not allow thy sons and daughters to get married during the car show season.
10. Thou shalt not buy thy wife a floor jack for Christmas.

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My favorites

Don't forget:
rust free! (no charge)
Original condition..(ain't fixed nuthin' ....ever!)
Restoration started..(dissassembled)
restoration nearly complete..(I didn't lose too many parts when dissassembled)
Was told it was off of a Shelby....( by an idiot, I know better, but he DID tell me!)
Excellent restoration project..(EVERYTHING is broken, rusted or missing)
Never had time to finish...(300 years!)
Runs like a bat out of hell...(Funny burnt hair smell, lots of squeeks, most people are repulsed by it, ugly as hell)
Email with any questions.(So I can lie in a non public forum)
Lots of spare parts..(didn't know where they went, might even be Pontiac parts)
Solid...(unable to start restoration, see above. Or rounded off the heads of all the bolts)
Must sell..(police red tagged it a week ago)
You must pick up..(I ain't getting my tractor stuck again) Don't ask how I know this one.
Lots of NEW parts..(still didn't make it run better, i give up)
New sheetmetal ready to install..(shame it doesn't fit)
Taken off of a Shelby....(honest, it was sitting right there on the trunk!)
My Moms car...(Got 27 tickets in it too.... age 55....speeding, evading arrest...crashed it into a house, license
revoked, need bail money)
Clear title...(you just need to find the 3 kids of the guy I got it from, before he died, and have them sign a few papers)
Restored part..(painted)
excellent restored part...(painted, no runs)
concourse restored parts...(painted the right color, no runs)
I could do this for a while. Most of these have actual truth behind them.
Bruce (TX)