Get a new car or fix up my 1992 SC400? - ClubLexus - Lexus Forum Discussion

Notices
SC- 1st Gen (1992-2000)

Get a new car or fix up my 1992 SC400?

Old 06-26-18, 11:08 PM
  #1  
opisdfagjo
Driver School Candidate
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: nevada
Posts: 23
Thanked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Default Get a new car or fix up my 1992 SC400?

I bought my 1992 SC400 in 2015 from my neighbor whose dad originally bought it in 1992. It currently runs OK, but she didn't take very good care of it and it needs work. It currently has around 225,000 miles on it. Most were highway miles because she and her husband drove it to Utah. I think I put about 100,000 miles on it.
I tried to think of a list of things that need to be fixed and or changed and this is what I came up with:

- Paint: Clearcoat is peeling all over the car. There is heavy chipping on the driver door near the hinge where it used to get stuck when trying to open the door. There is also another big peeling/hole where the paint is coming off near the bottom of the passenger door. Like right below the lower part of the door jam. Also it was in a crash (previous owner) and the passenger side of the car paint doesn't match exactly. There are a lot of scratches and small dents from *******s hitting my car with their doors. There is also a stress crack on the front bumper.
- Coilovers: I'm pretty sure these are the original coilovers. My car is low and I don't like it. I have to go over bumps very slowly. I prefer the stock height.
- AC Compressor: I think my AC is leaking slowly because I usually have to recharge it every couple of months. It was converted to R134 by the previous owner.
- Fender: I rear ended an old lady at about 5MPH (I was pulling forward and looking at oncoming traffic behind me) and it bent the driver side fender more. I think both fenders were a little bent before I bought it but now they look even more bent. The front bumper is also bent and goes under the hood a bit on the drivers side of the car.
- Moon/sunroof: I think someone tried to break into my car via my moonroof because one day after work it wouldn't close all the way and it was working fine when I was driving. Now only one side moves while the other doesn't. And it is not completely flush, and it looks like a metal piece that redirects water flow is loose and can be taken out. If I try to lift it up only one side goes up.
- Cluster: The lights are all pretty much dead in my cluster making it extremely hard to see my speed, RPMs, temperature, and fuel. None of the needles work and the backlight is very dim on one side only. The other side is completely black.
- Sideview mirrors: These were glued in place by the previous owner. The passenger side mirror glue is gone now and sometimes if it's windy it blows my mirror into the closed position or the opposite way so that the mirror is facing away from the car.
- Control arms: I don't think these were ever replaced either.
- Engine gaskets/seals
- Windshield: My windshield has 3 or 4 noticeable chips in it.
- Power steering: I've had a bad power steering leak for a while now. It's gotten all over the bottom of my car. I keep meaning to get the Edelmann hoses but for the longest time I was just so busy with full time work and full time school.
- Window: The driver side window doesn't work sometimes. I can hear the motor starting I think but the window usually won't move more than an inch and I have to press the button and use my hand to push the window closed.

The interior is in decent shape. I took a set of fabric seats out of 1993 SC400 and swapped them with the leather ones in mine. I followed a diy door repair to fix the cracked door panels and it looks a lot better now and the door isn't lose and doesn't rattle at all like it used to. Some of the air vents are cracked and a piece of one snapped after I tried to remove an air freshener but other than that the interior is OK.
I like the car but sometimes I wonder if it's better to just get a newer model 1997-2000 SC400 or a completely different car.

Should I keep it or get something newer or something in better condition? I'm not even sure I have thought of everything that needs to be fixed/replaced.
opisdfagjo is offline  
Old 06-27-18, 09:11 AM
  #2  
atoledo
Rookie
 
atoledo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: MA
Posts: 65
Thanks: 0
Thanked 6 Times in 6 Posts
Default

^^^ Completely agree with kitabel.....You could spend 5k and still not be as happy with it than just buying a clean 97+.
atoledo is online now  
Old 06-27-18, 11:07 AM
  #3  
ThomasGS4
Lexus Fanatic
iTrader: (19)
 
ThomasGS4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Big D
Posts: 9,089
Thanked 73 Times in 56 Posts
Default

If you aren't emotionally attached, get another one.
ThomasGS4 is offline  
Old 06-27-18, 07:14 PM
  #4  
opisdfagjo
Driver School Candidate
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: nevada
Posts: 23
Thanked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Default

Yeah there's no emotional attachment. I paid $1000 for it and it really hasn't given me much trouble until last summer.
opisdfagjo is offline  
Old 06-27-18, 08:49 PM
  #5  
ThomasGS4
Lexus Fanatic
iTrader: (19)
 
ThomasGS4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Big D
Posts: 9,089
Thanked 73 Times in 56 Posts
Default

Originally Posted by opisdfagjo View Post
Yeah there's no emotional attachment. I paid $1000 for it and it really hasn't given me much trouble until last summer.
You put 100k miles on a car you paid $1k for. That's a great investment. Unload this one and get a newer one.
ThomasGS4 is offline  
Old 07-01-18, 02:01 PM
  #6  
slappy96
Lead Lap
 
slappy96's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 468
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

All good advice given the things going on with the car. I actually just made the opposite decision mainly because I can't answer no to the 26 year emotional attachment question...
slappy96 is offline  
Old 07-04-18, 12:39 AM
  #7  
CELSI0R
Lead Lap
 
CELSI0R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: NJ
Posts: 599
Thanked 55 Times in 48 Posts
Default

The main parts I would say to keep are the fabric interior pieces, like the seats. Those a really nice to have, in my opinion; not to mention, rare in SC's (even though they're more common in Soarers).

I would also keep any useful engine components, like the airflow sensor and any new parts, as well as electronics (like the dash cluster), so you have spare parts for another SC or to sell.
CELSI0R is offline  
Old 07-04-18, 01:15 PM
  #8  
opisdfagjo
Driver School Candidate
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: nevada
Posts: 23
Thanked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Default

Originally Posted by CELSI0R View Post
The main parts I would say to keep are the fabric interior pieces, like the seats. Those a really nice to have, in my opinion; not to mention, rare in SC's (even though they're more common in Soarers).

I would also keep any useful engine components, like the airflow sensor and any new parts, as well as electronics (like the dash cluster), so you have spare parts for another SC or to sell.
Yeah I really like the fabric seats they're a lot more comfortable than the leather ones and they don't get worn as easily. I bought them from a scrapyard for $30 and just rented one of those upholstery cleaner vacuums and they look good.
And the needles and lights on the cluster are out, isn't it expensive to get that fixed? That's why I was looking at a later model like a 97-99.
opisdfagjo is offline  
Old 07-05-18, 10:32 PM
  #9  
CELSI0R
Lead Lap
 
CELSI0R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: NJ
Posts: 599
Thanked 55 Times in 48 Posts
Default

From what I've read and seen online, the cluster needles can be expensive to replace if you send it to a professional, but it's not bad if you do it yourself. It just takes a lot of patience, careful soldering, and time. Here is a video I have bookmarked, in case I ever buy an SC. I prefer the earlier models for simplicity reasons, but the later models are quite nice, too.

Still, it may be nice to have the cluster for spare parts, in case pieces like the bezel are the same on your newer SC. That part may have been changed, but I'm not sure.

Also, that's great with regards to your seats. I have the fabric seats in my LS, and I too like them very much.
CELSI0R is offline  
Old 07-06-18, 01:20 PM
  #10  
SCDual
Driver School Candidate
 
SCDual's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: California
Posts: 44
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

Depends. How much you like the car. If your motivated enough no matter the condition of it the end result is all that matters. But if you want to be like everyone else. Go ahead and buy a nice new clean coupe and then mod it up.

But it to be recognized, I would consider keeping the car and building it. Then you will feel better about the accomplishment you made by basically restoring a classic car.
SCDual is offline  


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Quick Reply: Get a new car or fix up my 1992 SC400?


Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

© 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
 
  • Ask a Question
    Get answers from community experts
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: