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  #16  
Old 12-21-2005, 02:12 AM
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Location: Phoenix AZ
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I made profit parting out a 420SEL with a broken timing chain...

I don't intend to part with my 300SD... perhaps ever... but if I did, I do believe it would fetch more than the $1500 I paid last year. Gen-2 15" rims/flush lamps, astralsilber/black leather, AZ rust free car... seems like a $2k plus example... I turned down the offer to trade it for a 1989 300SE even up, and that SE was very nice.

My Pagoda fever dates back to 1987. Dad bought a '65 then, it was burgundy (original paint)/tan Tex, white steering wheel, slimline whitewalls. God, I loved that car (I was 11 at the time)... he thought about letting me use it in HS but sold it when I was 15.

I like to think I would have treated it with respect but somehow I think that driving that to high school would have been Ferris Bueller's Day Off... every day...

BTW he came out about even on the 230SL, too...
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  #17  
Old 12-21-2005, 10:14 AM
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Location: Southport, NC 28461
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I see you (RA) live in the FL Keys. Not the best location to store an expensive old Benz for an investment. I very recently saw a nice 220SE on auction that had been flooded up to the dashboard in Saltwater during a hurricane...the seller lived in Key West.

Perhaps the auto's insurance or homeowner's flood insurance would cover the loss, but I would not be comfortable with the price they would offer for a total loss?
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'84 300D ~90k
'82 300SD ~171k
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  #18  
Old 12-21-2005, 10:49 AM
Ra_ Ra_ is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: The Florida Keys
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken in NC
I see you (RA) live in the FL Keys. Not the best location to store an expensive old Benz for an investment. I very recently saw a nice 220SE on auction that had been flooded up to the dashboard in Saltwater during a hurricane...the seller lived in Key West.

Perhaps the auto's insurance or homeowner's flood insurance would cover the loss, but I would not be comfortable with the price they would offer for a total loss?
I saw that Ken. They are asking $5K. Insane.

They lost about 20,000 cars down here.
I've been here 20 years and that's the first time we had a storm surge like that.

I got my SDL 3 days before Wilma hit and I don't usually evacuate...
but I headed North that time.

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  #19  
Old 12-21-2005, 10:54 AM
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Location: Kansas City, MO, USA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hatterasguy
I could probably flip my 300SD for $800-$1k. I cleaned it up a bit and it runs and drives well enough. I may to in the next year or so.

I paid $500 for it plus about $300 worth of stuff to get it running and registered. If I sold it for $1k I would just make a couple of bucks.
What about the hours of labor you've put into it? May not be much, but if you include all that would you still have made a profit? Perhaps you'd just break even.

My Euro 500SEL was nothing but a money grabbing POS. I just had bad luck on that car. I bought it with a slipping 4th gear. I replaced the transmission with one from an '89 420SEL with just 112K miles that got totalled in an accident. Less than 1,000 miles later, that transmission died. At that point I decided to part out the car but many different people who promised to buy parts just didn't keep their word(s). Then I thought about parting it out and selling the parts to forum members as well as on eBay, but I landed a big contract for my business and simply couldn't waste my time on that. So I sold the entire car on eBay at a huge loss... when I add the property tax I just paid on the POS, the losses come up to a grand total of $2,080. My calculation may be flawed though, as that figure includes the cost of car registration, titling and insurance while I owned the car. But to me, I had to let go of the car not by my own accord but due to the mechanical failure in the car, so those are included in the loss.

On the other hand, I've made money on two old diesels (1981 300CD, 1982 300SD) I bought at auctions and re-sold on eBay without spending even $0.01 on top of my purchase prices. I made $600 on the first and then $710 on the second. Then I could have also made money on a 1984 300D with 186K miles I saw on sale for $800 but I decided to let a forum member have it (Anyone interested in a $800 '84 300DT?)
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1988 Mercedes-Benz 560SEL, 89K miles - daily driver
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  #20  
Old 12-21-2005, 10:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ra_


NOW THAT'S SOMETHING!!
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  #21  
Old 12-21-2005, 02:13 PM
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It is possible if you get on the right side of the depreciation curve

You can make money on these cars if you are selective when you buy them and if you do your own work. I bought a 63 300SE coupe (which looked similar to this http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1969-MERCEDES-280SE-SUNROOF-COUPE-RESTORED-GORGEOUS_W0QQitemZ4599215414QQcategoryZ6329QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem ) in Germany in 1970 for $2500 and drove it a couple of years and 30,000 miles before selling it for $2700 in 1972. I bought it from the dealer in Karlsruhe and it was in excellent shape. It had been an executive "perk" car for a paper company in Hamburg that was traded in as soon as it had been depreciated out. It had new tires and a new power train installed by Mercedes around 50K km prior to my acquisition so if you go on purchase and sale price I made money. If you add in oil changes, gas and general maintenance I lost money but I did get to drive the car 2 years and around 30K miles without any depreciation. If i had bought a new Mustang for $2,500 in 1970 and driven it 2 years and 30,000 miles I would have been lucky to get $1,000 in a trade for it in 1972. Of course if there had been any major repairs all bets would have been off but that is where being selective comes in.
Basket cases can be pretty good if you buy the right car and are good at estimating everything you will have to do to a car to get it into perfect condition. When I sold the 300SE coupe I picked up a 66 Jaguar E-Type with a perfect body and a dismantled motor for $800. I went into this as a business deal with a friend who was a mechanical genius who knew Jags. The car cost around $6,000 and first owner was a rich kid who drove it till the clutch wore out around 65,000 miles before trading it in. The dealer sent it to an incompetent mechanic for a clutch job (which takes about 20 hours on that car because you have to pull the motor out to do it) The mechanic was either too dumb or too cheap to replace the throw out bearing (which is graphite and wears down along with the clutch disc and must be replaced) so he welded a piece of a bolt on the rod between the slave cylinder and the fork so that the clutch would disengage. He welded too much on and ended up with a clutch that rode all the time. The second owner bought the car from the dealer for $3,500 and drove it a few months before the the thrust washer spun and the engine blew up. When that happened the second owner towed the car home and tried to fix it himself. So when we picked it up it consisted of a bare body, block and head with parts in 23 warehouse boxes which we threw into a horse trailer and brought home. Three months and $400 later we had a car that we could have sold for around $3,200 with a $2,000 profit but I decided to keep the car because I was 22 at the time and it ran like a scalded rat. If you are unfamiliar with the car here is what one looks like http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/David-Ferguson-restored-E-Type-now-available-for-sale_W0QQitemZ4598773067QQcategoryZ6277QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem It was a poor man's Ferrari. So my wife and I tooted around in that car for 15 years before I spent about $6,000 and did a complete restoration on it. About that time the stock market crashed and crazy people started buying collectible stuff. One day I was driving it around and a guy offered me $30,000 for it...and that's when I paid off my house and bought my 230SL. If you add up all of the money I spent on gas, oil, tires, etc. and insurance and property tax, I probably made a little money on it but not as much proportionately as I would made if I had flipped it after four months. Of course if I had bought a Corvette in 1972 my trade in in 1988 would have been a lot less than $30,000.
I have a friend who scours the countryside for perfect Mercedes cars to buy, fix up, drive for a few months and sell. There are a lot of them out there...cars whose original owners are very wealthy who serviced them at the dealer and kept them in garages. He buys them, keeps them in his 8 car garage, has them detailed and sells them after a while as museum pieces to discriminating buyers. He does it as a hobby because he loves the chase and the process of bringing them up to showroom condition and he loves driving a different classic Mercedes car every 6 months. I am quite sure that he makes good money on every car he touches.
The big thing about Mercedes cars is that if you are mechanical and selective you can drive a beautiful car for a whole lot less than the average person spends for his "ride". Think about it...Right now as I write this there is a guy sitting in a car showroom signing the papers to buy a $45,000 SUV that is going to be worth only $15,000 in 3 years. If he invested that $30,000 in something that that is not going to go Poof in the next 3 years he would really have something!
I just bought an 86 300SDL for $1,500 which is going to be a museum piece in a few months when I finish with it. Everything is close to perfect about it except that it has a cracked head and the transmission leaks a little. I am estimating that my total cost for the car when completed will be less than $6,000 including a new "22" head, new transmission seals and about 40 hours of my time. If you think about it, $6,000 is a lot less than the first months depreciation on that SUV and somewhere around 5 years from now the SDL will run better and be worth more. Of course it is hard to avoid depreciation on any new car. Looking through the records for the SDL I can see that the car was sold new in September 1986 (probably for over $48,000 tax and all) and sold to the second owner by a dealer in September 1988 for $29,000. So that is around $20,000 in depreciation when you figure that the original owner probably traded it in for a couple thousand less than $29,000 the second owner paid for it.
So the message is to know as much as you can about these cars so that you can get into the right one at the right time in its depreciation cycle. Thats where this excellent web site comes into the picture!
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  #22  
Old 12-21-2005, 03:09 PM
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not counting labor (or the miles I put on it) - I broke even selling a 240D that I converted to run on WVO.

It was definitely the WVO conversion that added the value to that car!
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  #23  
Old 12-21-2005, 03:28 PM
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Bought an 84 500 sel on ebay for 3K. Changed all fluids, drive belts, timing chain and guides. Sold for $4500. Broke even.
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  #24  
Old 12-21-2005, 03:41 PM
123 123 is offline
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the only car out of all mine that sold for a profit was my 240TD which i bought for 900 and sold 20,000 miles later for 1,100. the biggest loss i made was on my w124 300d which i bought for 1,550 and sold a couple of motnhs later for 1,000...
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  #25  
Old 12-21-2005, 04:50 PM
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Well, in 2000, I bought a 1983 300D with 157k for $2550.00. Since then I have, in just parts, spent a little over $1000.00. I have recently sold it for $3500.00. So basicaly I almost broke even. I only sold for hopes of this particular 300GD. Still waiting on this guy to get back with me.
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  #26  
Old 12-21-2005, 04:51 PM
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I haven't tried to sell one of my MB's....yet.
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  #27  
Old 12-21-2005, 06:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by braverichard
What about the hours of labor you've put into it? May not be much, but if you include all that would you still have made a profit? Perhaps you'd just break even.
If I include my time I would probably almost break even if I got $1k for it.
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  #28  
Old 12-21-2005, 06:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hatterasguy
If I include my time I would probably almost break even if I got $1k for it.
CORRECTION:

"If I include my time, I would probably almost break even if I got $20K for it."


There, now that's more like it.
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  #29  
Old 12-21-2005, 06:28 PM
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We are talking about the SD now! I have only a few hours into it. I spent 2 hours yesterday waxing and cleaning it and spun on another set of fuel filters. Now I will just turn the key for the next 3 months. I think I last washed it in Oct. Next wash is schedualed for April 1.


I would need to sell the SDL for $30k to break even.
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  #30  
Old 12-21-2005, 06:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hatterasguy
We are talking about the SD now! I have only a few hours into it. I spent 2 hours yesterday waxing and cleaning it and spun on another set of fuel filters. Now I will just turn the key for the next 3 months. I think I last washed it in Oct. Next wash is schedualed for April 1.


I would need to sell the SDL for $30k to break even.
OK, I forgot all about that one.

I'd need to sell the SDL for something about $15K and the SD for about $9K to break even if you include the labor.

Well, maybe the new one will be the charm.
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