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1989 Caprice Winter Beater

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  • 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

    Back in March, I bought a 1989 Caprice from the local salvage yard. My third car bought at a junkyard. It was super clean and fairly rust free compared other cars of its vintage in this area.

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    I looked at this car last fall when it showed up at the local salvage yard's car lot area. I thought it was pretty cool and cheap enough to be a candidate in order for me to stop driving my 50 year old iron during the salty road winter months. Then it vanished for months. I thought it was sold. Then it showed back up in the yard. I went to look at it seriously at this point. It ran fantastic, had brand new tires and new exhaust from cat back.

    I can't stand front drive econoboxes, but I didn't want something I would cry over if it rusted in half one day. This car seemed to fit in that box.

    I went back to test drive it, but found out the reason why the little old lady sold it to the yard was because it overheated and supposedly pushed out the freeze plugs. I drove it anyways because it was 5 degrees out. It wouldn't overheat in a short drive. It ran great. So, I bought it and handed over the $1100 asking price.

    I bought 2 gallons of used antifreeze, poured it in the engine, then drove it the 3 miles home. There wasn't a drop left in the engine by the time I got home, but the car didn't care. It ran and drove great.

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    Huskinhano and malibumonte78 like this.
    BS'er formally known as Rebeldryver

    Resident Instigator

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  • #2

    Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

    Not a bad little car..

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    • #3

      Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

      305 or a 350? I see a serpentine belt, anti lock brakes, cruise control, Fuel injection... oh man, Scott has embraced technology... what next?!!
      Flying south, with a flock of bird dogs.

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      • #4

        Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

        Can't wait to see the path this one takes!
        Patrick & Tammy
        - Long Haulin' 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014...Addicting isn't it...??

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        • #5

          Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

          Could have got a 90 Caprice a few years back for $700 but it just needed so much work it just was not worth it. Good score
          "I live for myself and I answer to nobody."

          -Steve McQueen

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          • #6

            Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

            Looks good! BTW - the Volvo is almost done so stand by for a wrap-up.

            Dan

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            • #7

              Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

              Great cars . I've had about 8 never paid more than 1200 for one . I as well bought one out of a scrap yard . I paid 200 for it and it came with no wheels or tires and no alternator .Interior was great and the body was great except for the paint . It was a nice burgundy color but it sort of had a wrinkle finish. I think the school system that scrapped it was ashamed of it after trying to freshen the exterior. I had another car just like it that had been in a wreak and was going to put its motor in the thing . But then curiosity got the better of me and I stuck a alternator on it and a battery. Thing fired right up drove great and the air worked . Get the rear seat bar off a car that came with it . Really helps in the turns . Good luck with it .
              Previously HoosierL98GTA

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              • #8

                Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

                305 or a 350? I see a serpentine belt, anti lock brakes, cruise control, Fuel injection... oh man, Scott has embraced technology... what next?!!
                The whopper of a 305 TBI with an snooze inducing 170 hp and the 2004R.
                BS'er formally known as Rebeldryver

                Resident Instigator

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                • #9

                  Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

                  Time to do a transplant Heir Doctor.... Click image for larger version  Name:	f08c193c551c94eb9d125e462508430d.jpg Views:	1 Size:	211.9 KB ID:	1200398
                  383 and a t56 aught to do it....
                  Last edited by silver_bullet; May 10th, 2018, 06:30 PM.
                  Patrick & Tammy
                  - Long Haulin' 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014...Addicting isn't it...??

                  Comment


                  • #10

                    Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

                    Those 305's...I liked em. I drove a few and they had as muc oomph as my car at the time (78 olds w/ 350)..if not more. I used my grandpas car a lot before I left for the service. 79 Pontiac sedan with 301. That car was a joy to drive, smooth as silk on the road and could cruise at 85 and still get decent gas mileage.
                    If you can leave two black stripes from the exit of one corner to the braking zone of the next, you have enough horsepower. - Mark Donohue

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                    • #11

                      Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

                      Pick up some cop car suspension parts, that could be a real fun car!
                      Tom
                      Overdrive is overrated


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                      • #12

                        Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

                        Kinda the route I was thinkin'!
                        Patrick & Tammy
                        - Long Haulin' 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014...Addicting isn't it...??

                        Comment


                        • #13

                          Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

                          OK, so I will admit I have never owned a "winter beater" At one point I did have an airport car but I digress.

                          Soooo, you buy a "winter beater" in May and work on it until October fixing, modifying, improving it?
                          Help me understand - I always thought you bought a POS that was just good enough to be reliable but not nice enough to care about.

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                          • #14

                            Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

                            Never had a winter beater.... I look for the potential in almost all vehicles... that Caprice has way too much potential as a sleeper to be relegated to beater status....BTW Allen, you know I can never leave well enough alone....
                            Last edited by silver_bullet; May 13th, 2018, 06:43 AM.
                            Patrick & Tammy
                            - Long Haulin' 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014...Addicting isn't it...??

                            Comment


                            • #15

                              Re: 1989 Caprice Winter Beater

                              low compression 305... begging for boost. Probably already has "gapped" rings...cast pistons... what could go wrong? grin.
                              Flying south, with a flock of bird dogs.

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