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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
PLEASE PLEASE Look through all these pictures here!

So this morning I'm at a stop sign and and some raggety hick mechanic type in a bigass Ford truck decides to cut corners like Nascar and COMPLETELY doesn't see me at the stop sign. He cuts into my lane as he is turning onto my street. He's going about 20 mph, and it's a perfect head-on collision. BAM! His fault completely. I don't know how the hell the dumbass didn't see me! I was rolling up to the sign, check left, nobody. Check right, BAM! It's like he was driving in Europe.

Other than a headache the rest of the day, me and my passenger (a kid I take to school) were alright. I wanted to (and eventually did) cry on account of all of the hours of work my dad and I have spent on this old Saab. TONS of hours. This car's seen wreckage before, and granted, it wasn't wrecked this bad at all, but with hard work my dad and I brought it back to life. And some guy in a POS Ford rustbucket ends it's life again. The truck only got his bumper squashed back under his tire, a missing taillight, and a slight hood dent. Other driver was okay, too, and I guess that's what's important...

Does this spell the end for my beloved Saab? Has anyone restored a car in such mangled condition? It was my life's goal to hold onto this baby forever, really. My dad bought it new in 1983 and it only has accumulated 120,000 or so miles- still a young-un in Saab years. The car's been towed back and rested next to my barn. So much is wrong with it, so please look at the pictures. The shifter is stuck, too, in quite an irregular position I might add. From the windshield to the back, the car seems to be in remarkable condition. The front did it's job well and scrunched up, absorbing a lot of the blow. ;ol;

Any advice on what points to look at or how to approach this poor corpse?
 

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It looks salvageable to me, at least from a functionality point of view, the wheels look straight and true and the hood/radiator x-member (iirc) are easily replaceable. I'm not sure though to what extent the fender damage can be repaired (at reasonable expense/effort).

Overall Id say you could probably salvage it as a beater for not too much $, but it'd require a donor car's worth of front end parts to make it looking like new + metalwork and paint.

Always sad to see a fellow saab get wrecked :(
 

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The fenders, hood, bumper, grill can all be replaced. Check the drive tunnels, frame rails and front suspension mounting areas to see how damaged they are. Structural damage there might be a deal killer for me, but with a car that has that much history, I would try everything reasonably in my power to resuscitate it. Shifter is probably stuck because the engine/tranny got shifted. Broken motor mount maybe.

That sucks. Good that everyone is ok, but it still sucks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you so much for the replies, guys. They mean a lot. My dad is skeptical, but I think that there is hope with this Saab. I may not have all the money or time now, but I've got a full summer ahead, and we have enough cars at home to get around (including our 89 Turbo Conv). I think I'll just start by taking the whole front end apart, starting with the hood, crossmember, obliterated radiator, fans, turbo etc. I guess an engine pull would be inevitable, too, huh? I just figure if I'm gonna junk the car, might as well gut the front end first.

I think I love this car too much to give it up. And I think I could learn a whole lot by bringing it back to working condition. But if I also need a reality check, please don't hesitate to comment! :lol:

Again, I appreciate any advice or comments! ;ol;
 

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Glad to hear everyone is OK and sorry to hear about the Saab. Unfortunately, what you are facing is some extensive reconstruction. At the very least, you would need to replace the entire front end. To get an idea what this involves, you would want to replace the front fenders, the wheel wells, coil towers, the driveshaft tunnels/inner fender wall, the front lower cross memeber, the left and right bumper supports, the left and right lower longitudinal structural braces (running from the lower front cross member to the coil tower, and potentially the lower longitudinal braces which run under the floor pan. That would be about the minimum not including the bolt on parts which would include things like the hood, radiator, bumper, etc.

IMHO, as much as I know you would love to keep it, I think it's time to move on to another Saab. The amount of cost and effort required to replace all of those components is incredibly high and the skill required to restore the vehicle to a reasonably safe standard is also high. If you must, I suppose the best approach may be to get a solid body, make a fixture that provides some alignment points to the straight, assembled body, then cut the entire front clip from both vehicles. Using the fixture, you could then reattach the front donor clip to the rear of the car. If you can find such a donor car that it would be worth taking the front clip from, it may still make more sense just to use that body the way it is. If I had to guess, I'd think this would take a reasonably skilled welder perhaps 100 hours or more to do, then you still have the body work and repainting to do.
 

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With the inner fender & radiator core support damage,, most likely the frame rails are bent too. I would press the insurance company for the biggest payoff possible with the understanding you get to keep the car. That way you can tear into it to see how bad the hidden damage is. Glad to know everyone is all right. Who needs airbags when a car can take a licking like this & occupants walk away without injury. The fact that the windshield was not broken or cracked speaks loads to the integrity of the basic structure.
 

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That is a good hit and probably a write-off, sadly enough. Glad everyone is okay.

I would do some combination of what Peter Martin and Mmoe suggested. Negotiate a deal with your insurance company that allows you to keep the car. Then transplant as many parts as possible from the sentimental Saab to a new shell. Won't be exactly the same car, but maybe close enough. I fear the repair costs & effort will be too great to save her as she sits.
 

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I was recently hit as well and you can expect that to be a write off. My C900 is being appraised tomorrow with a whole lot less damage and I cannot see how it will not be written off.

SPGreg is correct in saying buy the car back. That is what I plan on doing and getting my 88 Vert top notch for summer.

Too bad though, these are great cars and the asshat that hit me gets out of her SUV and says atleast you didnt have a nice car. She can go out and purchase the exact same SUV from a used dealer lot but there are only two C900's for sale right now in AB an both are verts. I do not plan on replacing this car but driving my newer SAAB instead. With the amount of douche canoe drivers out there I do not want to drive a car that cannot be easily replaced.

Good luck my friend. I feel your pain. Buy the car back if it makes financial sense and transplant what you can.

Steady as she goes....steady as she goes.

Drew
 

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By normal standards that looks like its done for. But it sounds like you have a few things going for you. From the sounds of it you have a place where you can take your time and do it as a long term project. There is also a valid reason for putting the effort into it. If you are doing the work then it should be worth it.
If its any consilation I've been there:cry:



and the asshat that hit me gets out of her SUV and says atleast you didnt have a nice car.
I would not have handled that well...
 

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By normal standards that looks like its done for. But it sounds like you have a few things going for you. From the sounds of it you have a place where you can take your time and do it as a long term project. There is also a valid reason for putting the effort into it. If you are doing the work then it should be worth it.
If its any consilation I've been there:cry:



I would not have handled that well...
My damage is about 1/10th of yours but I was upset with her! At that point I simply requested her info, wrote it down and drove away. I just hope she gets what is coming to her. If you turn into someone there should be a price to pay! If you hit someone, there needs to be a price to pay.

I love these cars. Even with the rusty fender wells she handled it like a champ. I had no idea of the rust until she hit me and turned my fender flares into microwaved bacon.

I wanted to say again good luck to the OP and I can respect anyone will spend 50 plus hours in their garage fixing something that someone else did to them. I love these cars as I stated earlier, but sometimes it just does not make sense. People are inconsiderate asshats!

Good luck and safe travels!

Drew
 

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In my opinion, there is absolutly no point in carrying any optional insurance (collision, comp, etc) on a vehicle over 7 years old, and very little point on something over 5 years. The insurace companys will "total" it out for just about any damage. You are far better paying less and fixing it yourself out of the saveings. Most are based on "book value less deperation" which makes no sense as "Book value" IS deprecition. I have several vehicles, some over 60 years old. As much as I like my old trucks, I would never pay an insurance company to insure them (other then liability) as they WILL NOT repair them if damaged.
There is a company in Germany that makes new drive tunnels for the Saab, and if you are set on repairing, I would look long and hard at that area and replace if damaged.
 

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Do you know Kyle who is in the Bloomington area? If not PM me. Also if you do another 8V turbo, I can provide all of the pieces to add an intercooler to it ala the Euro market cars if you are interested. That includes a modified APC box from Group9!
 

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I was recently hit as well and you can expect that to be a write off. My C900 is being appraised tomorrow with a whole lot less damage and I cannot see how it will not be written off.

SPGreg is correct in saying buy the car back. That is what I plan on doing and getting my 88 Vert top notch for summer.

Too bad though, these are great cars and the asshat that hit me gets out of her SUV and says atleast you didnt have a nice car. She can go out and purchase the exact same SUV from a used dealer lot but there are only two C900's for sale right now in AB an both are verts. I do not plan on replacing this car but driving my newer SAAB instead. With the amount of douche canoe drivers out there I do not want to drive a car that cannot be easily replaced.

Good luck my friend. I feel your pain. Buy the car back if it makes financial sense and transplant what you can.

Steady as she goes....steady as she goes.

Drew
Which side got trashed? Maybe I'll bring you some pieces to fix :p

-------------

As for the OP's car, it is fixable IMO but it depends how nice the rest of it is. If the rest of the car was mint, I'd probably give it a try...
 

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In my opinion, there is absolutly no point in carrying any optional insurance (collision, comp, etc) on a vehicle over 7 years old, and very little point on something over 5 years. The insurace companys will "total" it out for just about any damage. You are far better paying less and fixing it yourself out of the saveings. Most are based on "book value less deperation" which makes no sense as "Book value" IS deprecition. I have several vehicles, some over 60 years old. As much as I like my old trucks, I would never pay an insurance company to insure them (other then liability) as they WILL NOT repair them if damaged.
There is a company in Germany that makes new drive tunnels for the Saab, and if you are set on repairing, I would look long and hard at that area and replace if damaged.
I would agree with that to an extent except that, depending on driver/circumstances, some Insurers will often quote fully comp for just a few £ more that TPFT (which I would always reccomend over TP only unless money is really tight), especially if you bump up the optional excess (makes no odds if you were prepared to go TP only anyway). That way you benefit from the Windscreen, PA and DOC benefits which come with the fully comp policy. On my 9k Aero, fully comp is £5 pa more than TPFT, the DOC is easily worth that to me alone.

If you really want proper comprehensive cover on one of these cars, especially if the "actual" value is more that the book/market value is to go for an agreed value classic car policy. Bear in mind the agreed value is subject to negotiation and your position when agreeing negotiating will benefit from any receipts from restoration work etc. you have to justify the value you're stating.

One other thing, with any motor claim, especially if you have any intention of retaining the salvage, never let the damaged vehicle out of your possession until settlement terms have been agreed if at all possible, even leaving it at a garage to get the damage estimated. The chances of it getting trucked to a salvage yard the other end of the country and either getting inadvertently crushed or your having to pay return transport costs to get it back are high. Trust me, I work in the insurance industry (if that's not an oxymoron)!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Many months later...

Hello all, thanks for all your replies, they're very much appreciated! I'm just bringing this thread back from the dead in the hopes that I can bring this Saab back from the dead. Before I left for college in August, dad and I borrowed an engine lift and hoisted the engine out. What we saw didn't look too horrible, but not all that wonderful either. Here are a few pictures: (Sorry in advance, at the time I didn't take any overhead pictures of the engine bay for some Godforsaken reason.)

Totaled 1984 Saab 900 Turbo Engine Removal

The two rectangular-shaped rails in the engine bay (the frame, right?) were slightly bent... the one on the passenger's side (note: the truck that hit me came at a slight angle from the passenger's side) is noticeably, but not horribly, bent towards the driver's side. The driver's side "rail" looks almost perfectly straight, just some slight bend. However, the two engine mounting points in the back are quite mangled, at least the driver's side on is kind of wrinkled pretty badly. Could those "frame rails" be bent back, and those mounting points fixed? (I suppose I shouldn't ignore those messed up fenders, too...)

From what I've read and what people have told my dad, the best way (not cheapest, I'm sure) would be to find a whole donor front end, cut it off, and put it on this '84. Coincidentally, the '89 convertible (also shown in the album from that link) we bought keeps breaking down, and now we'll have to do a clutch job on it. Many times in exasperation dad just says "Eff it, let's chop the front end off this one and put it on the '84." :lol:

Yet if we took this approach, there are several things to think about: we have no welding experience whatsoever, so we would not be doing the dirty work for this step. How expensive and practical would it be to have the right guy chop a front end off a donor and weld it, straight and true, onto the '84?

Just to say, my interest in fixing the '84 has been renewed because the folks are looking to downsize and move out of the house soon, meaning they'll have to downsize their possessions... Among the non-working '89 convertible, we already have a new sedan and a pickup, so if this Saab doesn't get fixed by the end of Summer (when they expect to move out), then we can say bye-bye to the '84's old carcas. And if it does actually get fixed, my dad hinted that it would be MY car to own, essentially making it the first car I've ever actually owned (granted, I would have to contribute to fixing expenses, good old Dad :roll:).

But if this car ultimately gets fixed, it wouldn't be one of those sit-in-the-garage forever cars. Dad and I ultimately believe in driving cars, not letting them sit pristinely and untouched in a garage forever. It would be a daily driver, but it would be nurtured, and taken good care of.

Well, thanks for reading this long update! Since I'm at college for about 6 more weeks, not too much I can do about the Saab at the moment but ponder about it and hopefully prepare for Summer. Any advice or shared experiences is greatly appreciated! :cheesy:
 

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That car is destroyed.
Sure, with enough money you can straighten just about anything, but dude's insurance(if he has any) will probably offer you $1000 and call it a day. They will not pay to have that car fixed since it would cost far more than the value of the car. Give them body shop estimates and see what they say, but I don't see you getting more than a grand out of this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Details...

Sorry, I forgot some of the details, it's been such a long time: We got $2,000 out of it. They originally insisted $1500 but dad "insisted" (screamed, I'm sure) $2,000. Still, probably not nearly enough for what we would need if we were to fix it...

And just a note to those who may have skimmed to the end, this wreck happened about a year ago, April 13th. :p
 

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$2K is great for an insurance deal...kinda', although I would have sued the hell out of them for the headache.
Glad you didn't get hurt bad.
If that was 20mph, that could have been deadly any faster.
 

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Sorry, I forgot some of the details, it's been such a long time: We got $2,000 out of it. They originally insisted $1500 but dad "insisted" (screamed, I'm sure) $2,000. Still, probably not nearly enough for what we would need if we were to fix it...

And just a note to those who may have skimmed to the end, this wreck happened about a year ago, April 13th. :p
Maybe ask a shop, for $2k they could probably fix that :lol: Otherwise go buy a "porta-power" ram thing and get to work...
 

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Choices.....

Looking at the photos, my opinion is that the body damage to the '84 is so extensive that you should total the car. Body damage that extensive is very difficult to set right. I would put the effort into the '89 vert. Your vert body looks straight and clean. Mechanical issues can be sorted if you are patient. Just be thorough correcting each problem one at a time and work through all the problems with the car. I have bought many "problem" cars over the years and used this approach to end up with very reliable autos. Patience and thoroughness are the key. The $2k you got for the '84 will go a long way to sorting out the '89.
 
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