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Front end damage/bent engine cradle

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#1
jcl17

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I’m looking at buying a ‘99 SM that was involved in a front end crash. The owner disclosed that the engine cradle was bent and subframed damaged. He said it is still driven at track days (not races). Not sure how he can do this if the engine is actually not lined up straight??? Anyway, I think the car can be picked up for a song as a parts car at worst. That said, I’d love to get it back up and running as it was once a very fast car (multiple NASA win history) and is a pro build. What could possible be involved in fixing said problems? Can it be drivable again? If car is “trackable now” can I replace the subframe/engine cradle and get new motor mounts and consider it ready for inspection again??? Any advice is appreciated. My mechanical knowledge is very low as I’m new to SM and racing. Thanks.

#2
FTodaro

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To me the front sub frame is the engine cradle, so the sub frame itself can be replaceable inexpensively. The question would be is the damage limited to just the sub frame. If the entire front end is twisted it may be able to be straightened.

 

If it were me and you were serious about buying the car, i would ask to have it looked at first, go to a frame shop, buy two hrs of rack time to put it on a frame rack and have them measure it that will tell you how bad off it is and what it will take to make it straight.


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#3
davew

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Look for any wiggles in the firewall, floor or trans tunnell. If there are bends in any of these places, the tub is junk. I think all of would agree that when the tub is bent, the car should not be repaired. Might be a good parts car, but without pix it is hard to say.


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#4
jcl17

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I think it’s toast but still taking advise. Have pics but how do I post? I couldn’t find a thread instructing how and my pics are too large to upload.

#5
Johnny D

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I think it’s toast but still taking advise. Have pics but how do I post? I couldn’t find a thread instructing how and my pics are too large to upload.

 

If you post your pic any place online you can post the link here. Photobucket, whatever.

Also up above ^^^ you have your own Gallery to post to.

 

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#6
Tom Hampton

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You can post them to the gallery.  Gallery may also have a size limit, I don't recall.  Or you can host them on photo bucket (I assume that's still a thing), or somewhere similarly public...and then link here. 


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#7
Tom Hampton

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Johnny beat me to it....yet another race I got outspent!


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#8
Jim Drago

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I’m looking at buying a ‘99 SM that was involved in a front end crash. The owner disclosed that the engine cradle was bent and subframed damaged. He said it is still driven at track days (not races). Not sure how he can do this if the engine is actually not lined up straight??? Anyway, I think the car can be picked up for a song as a parts car at worst. That said, I’d love to get it back up and running as it was once a very fast car (multiple NASA win history) and is a pro build. What could possible be involved in fixing said problems? Can it be drivable again? If car is “trackable now” can I replace the subframe/engine cradle and get new motor mounts and consider it ready for inspection again??? Any advice is appreciated. My mechanical knowledge is very low as I’m new to SM and racing. Thanks.

I know the car, the damage is pretty bad with buckled tunnel on both sides and floor and a very poor repair to pass side rail.  I would spemnd my money elsewhere.  Someone like myself could buy that car and repair it correctly, but it is not worth the price. I would tub another car and swap parts

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#9
jcl17

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Let me know if this works I think you all are right but let’s confirm this is a parts only car.

http://s1259.photobu...jcl171/library/

#10
jcl17

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FYI I bought a clean one owner pro built ‘95 with a trailer last week and this car would indeed be a parts car but would be nice if it could be made to race again instead and sold to a race partner without spending too much money.

#11
davew

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Once the tub is damaged, the cost of repair exceeds the value of the repaired car. Plus you will never know if it straight untill you try to allign it. then you will never know if it handles well untill you actually race it. Big gamble if it does not work. Not any savings if it does work. No good reason to try.

 

I have seen at least 2 cars come through the shop that had been improperly repaired from damage like this. Some a-hole wanted to make some money off his mistake. Sold cars stating they where good cars, only to find that they paid good money for a parts car. I feel bad for the buyer. But I can't stand the seller.

Buyer be ware

 

dave


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#12
jcl17

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So can you tell by the photos that the tub is damaged? Jim is this the car you were thinking of? The seller doesn’t know much about the car or is conviently playing coy. I did messsage and discuss the car with the original owner (we all know him) I’ve had a lot of contact with seller and he seems like a decent guy but maybe not so informed. The car is once again on eBay. If the car is bent and has cracked subframe, I’d think he could be liable for a crash. That and we all (the seller included) have a duty to ensure we all are safe drivers/owners. I simply want his 4.3 rear end and having other spares won’t stink but only if price is very right. Poor guy. I think he paid $16k for it recently but maybe someone knows more.

#13
Tom Hampton

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That crack in the floor seam on the driver's side?  Seems like a pretty hefty hit.  That's some significant bending and tearing pretty far from any designed crumple zone---the footwell is not supposed to move. 

 

Its hard to imagine how that much stress could be transmitted that far into the unibody without f-ing up something in between. 


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#14
Walter Vetter

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