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Restoring vs. Customizing: Understanding the Needs of Your Classic Car

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Sometimes people have a tendency to take on a classic car project a little prematurely.  It’s not to say that it is a bad idea to buy such a car, in fact quite the opposite.  Owning a classic car has multiple benefits and excellent aspects that go along with it.  The only variable is that sometimes people dive in to the experience a little too soon, or at least before they do significant research in the area.  Committing to a classic car is a pretty big deal.  It’ll rack up either dollar signs on outgoing checks or time on one’s clock, or a combination of both.  It is an immensely rewarding experience, but those who tackle it with knowledge and understanding of the field first always have a better overall experience.

First up, people need to understand the difference between restoring a classic car and customizing a classic car Big, big, big difference here.  A classic car is going to have certain needs that you will have to meet.  Even a fully restored classic car will have more needs and maintenance projects that go along with it than a regular car will.

Restoring and Customizing; The Sky is the Limit with Classic Cars

If you have to restore a classic car, then that means that the car needs major work done on it to get it up to tip top shape and looking and performing the way it did when it was in its prime.  This can be a pretty big effort, both time consuming and costly.  A lot of times, people will prefer to buy already restored classic cars which have been brought up to mint condition externally, internally, and under the hood.  A restoration project literally involves anything from minor repairs on a car to a complete rebuilding of the car from the ground up.

Customizing a classic car is an entirely different prospect.  Customizing a classic car involves taking certain actions with the car or putting certain upgrades into the car that all ultimately go forward and make the car more unique and more appealing to the owner.  Upgrades are things that go above and beyond the basic, normal factory specifications of the car.  Upgrades are things like aftermarket exhaust systems, aftermarket air conditions, electronics, etc.  Power steering, power windows, doors, breaks, all of these would be upgrades to a classic car.  Buffering padding around the entire interior of the car to reduce loudness at high speeds is also a common upgrade.

Once a car is restored, it can then be upgraded.  Or, while a car is in the process of being restored, custom upgrades can be added to it.  This is probably the best time to address these upgrades as the car is already being worked on and put together.  Especially for things like sound dampening, this is best put in before the interior is redone, as removing the interior upholstery to install sound dampening is quite costly and difficult

The sky is quite literally the limit when it comes to working with classic cars.  It really is.  People can do whatever they want to them, and they can restore them and customize them to any degree that they see fit.  The important parts to remember are that anything that is done is more valuable than not doing anything at all, and will increase the value of the car appropriately.  Furthermore, restoring the car is far more important and is a priority over customizing.  Restoration comes first, as this is what makes the car the car so to speak, and customizing comes later as an added bonus or to give it certain, exciting features and looks to it.  All in all though, both steps and both looks are quite fun and quite enjoyable to be a part of, just so long as the person doing the restoring and the customizing has the time, energy, and money to engage in it.

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