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The Fist of Goodness
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Detroit
Posts: 5
New guy intro/what to look for?

Hello everyone. New to the forum, so I thought I'd take a moment to throw out a quick intro and seek a little advice. I'm 44, and have worked in the auto parts and/or service industry in one capacity or another since I was 17 years old, back in the Eccentric Eighties. In those years, I've owned, restored, modified, raced and worked on several different types of motor vehicles...and I've gained a wealth of experience, yet still manage to learn new things and improve my skills with each new project.

Currently, I'm on the lookout for a decent 924 or 944 (non turbo variants) to perform a 'practical restoration' on. By that, I mean not a concours, factory-correct restoration, but rather a comprehensive mechanical and cosmetic restoration (or 'restification' in some circles) aimed at producing a relaible and attractive 'driver' for interstate road trips and daily driving duties.

A friend owned a 1979 model 924, and I had a little experience with that car, enough to know that checking out the condition of the clutch and transmission is essential when inspecting a used one for sale, but I was wondering what other specific areas of concern are there in relation to buying a used 924 or 944 these days? Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated, and I thank you in advance.

Cheers!
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Old 06-25-2012, 08:43 AM
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Incorrigible
 
ditch68's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Elgin, AZ
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Welcome!

Here is a good, comprehensive overview of what to look for, right here on this site:

Pelican Technical Article: 944 Buyers Guide...

Good luck, you will love these things.

Jeff
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1988 951 all track modded and angry, 2002 Boxster

'88 924S, '65 912/911, '86 951, '79 924, '85 944 N/A, automatic - all gone.
"It makes me sad. Our cars were meant to be driven, not polished" - Ferry Porsche while surveying a concours field.
Old 06-25-2012, 09:14 AM
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Proprietoristicly Refined
 
John_AZ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: ~Carefree Highway~
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Hi,

I owned a '79 924 as well as a '77.5,
There are many owners who can help here and on the "official" 924 & 931 forum--
924Board.org :: Index

I now own the '87 & '88 924S.

Pelican has a "Tech Info Center" button on the top bar that has a lot of new buyer information.

My best advice is to get any car you are interested in checked with a PPI pre purchase inspection.
Information in the "Tech Info Center"

It may cost $150 or so but you are too green not to do it and take for granted what the PO previous owner claims.

A 924S or 944 early or late series may only cost $2000 to buy---the parts cost will be double.

I really enjoyed learning from the early cars and found they were underpowered -'77.5 & 79 924.

The 931 turbo is a great car but finding a decent project and parts is getting hard.

The 924S and 944s are all over the place and many being parted out. So parts are easy to get and usually cheap.

Read
Clark's Garage Home Page for more info.

GL & welcome
John
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1988 924S 77K July 2017 ...+ 1987 924S 145K DD (+15K est. bad odometer)

Last edited by John_AZ; 06-25-2012 at 09:26 AM..
Old 06-25-2012, 09:24 AM
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The Fist of Goodness
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Detroit
Posts: 5
Thanks for the pointers and links. Much appreciated!
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Old 06-25-2012, 10:26 AM
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Location: Northern Virginia
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From a financial outlay standpoint, finding a "nice" 924 or 944 might be better than saving a few $$ up front by finding one needing a lot of work. I only mention this because unless it is a very rare example , the resale value won't support huge investments. At least not yet.

Good luck on your search!
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1970 914-6
Past:
2000 Boxster 2.7, 1987 944
1978 911SC, 1976 914 2.0, 1970 914 w/2056
Old 06-25-2012, 05:07 PM
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+1.

I got an 86 turbo for half it' s value, but have spent the last 3 weeks nonstop correcting issues. Lucky for me the parts I needed were available used and local. But I have done an immense amout of actual manhour labor on ot ( if I had a shop do the work with new parts and rebuilds I would likely be approaching the double the purchase price level)

I only bought this particular car with its issues because I am mechanically inclined, and have the tools and motivation, and the car I wanted was very specific in that I wanted a black 1986 Turbo with black leather interior, and that was not negotiable for my personal desires.

If I just wanted a 944, and didnt have such specific tastes, I would not have bought this particular car.

Buy the absolute best car you can afford, with good records and sorted mechanicals. You will be FAR better off than finding a "fixer - upper".

Jeff
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1988 951 all track modded and angry, 2002 Boxster

'88 924S, '65 912/911, '86 951, '79 924, '85 944 N/A, automatic - all gone.
"It makes me sad. Our cars were meant to be driven, not polished" - Ferry Porsche while surveying a concours field.
Old 06-25-2012, 05:57 PM
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Non Compos Mentis
 
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Soggy NorthWest.
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I would no longer consider an early 924. Their engines are underpowered and lack the refinement of the 924S/944 engine, and even in pristine condition, their values are very low.

In your position, I would probably hunt for a 944 S2. They are about the best daily drivers of the 944 family, as they have gobs of low-end torque, near the power of a turbo, but with no turbo lag. Also, the turbos are geared so high that they are not as much fun when in traffic, and the turbos are more complicated from a maintenance/repair standpoint.

For an ultimate hot-rod, however, the Turbo is the only place to start!

The 968 is a great car- An equal to the 944 S2, but parts availability will be an issue if you need any body panels or other 968-specific parts.
All the other cars in the family share the majority of parts, so they are plentiful.

My current daily driver is a 2.5 litre 944S. Turbine smoothness, far better power than an 8-valve 944, yet still gets 30 mpg on the highway.

If you care at all about resale value, stick with a late 944, a 944S, or 944 S2.

For a track monster, get a 951, and then get a bucket of ice water ready to cool down your checkbook.

You're in for a lot of fun. .....Along with a few bloody knuckles.
Old 06-25-2012, 06:53 PM
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Once you get a basic car, you'll be lucky to find one that has repair history and records that you can really trust. I may sound like a cinic (sp) but after buying 3 of these great cars, I've paid my dues and learned a wealth of technical info and skills, mostly from interfacing with the others on this and "other" forums. Now I have a great little car that's mechanically sound, fun to drive and since I've done all the work myself, I can trust it to be reliable (except an electrical glitch you can't predict but can prepare for with extra relays). Don't be afraid to share your problems here because for those of us that read these posts religiously, we all learn the ins and outs of maintaining and repairing our babys. It's kinda like a "brain trust".
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3 944's, 2 Boxsters and one Caman S, and now one 951 turbo. Really miss the Cayman.

Some people try to turn back their "odometers." Not me. I want people to know 'why' I look this way. I've traveled a long way and some of the roads weren't paved.
Old 06-25-2012, 08:11 PM
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The Fist of Goodness
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Detroit
Posts: 5
Good and solid info from all! One thing I was wondering about is the quality and reliability of 924 and 944 Porsches with (gasp) automatic transmissions? I can't recall ever seeing one, in 924 or 944 form, but supposedly they are out there?!

The only reason I'm considering an automatic, is so that all family members can drive it, if desired. No sense getting EXTRA clutch-replacing experience if you can help it! (Did a clutch job on my friend's old 1979 924, and it still haunts my dreams and nightmares!).

Any tips or warnings related to automatic-equipped cars?

(Resale value is a non-issue for me, I'm looking for a fun, affordable car and I extract my value from my cars by enjoying them, so when I'm finished with them, they don't owe me anything!)
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Old 06-26-2012, 08:52 AM
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I have changed a couple of early 924 clutches and did not have any trouble or nightmares.

The automatic has a rubber flex disc that will cost you $1200 +- for the part alone.
If you buy a used automatic get a lot of sleep because you will have migraines when you see the automatic repair bill.

The automatic on the 944s is a 3 speed.
It is a very good commuter car if you spend an hour each way and do not like to shift.

The entire clutch Sachs kit is about $550 or less and yes it will take a couple of weekends of work.

If you buy an automatic, expect your resale price to be half of the purchase price you paid---AFTER you replace the $1200 automatic flex disc.

John
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1988 924S 77K July 2017 ...+ 1987 924S 145K DD (+15K est. bad odometer)
Old 06-26-2012, 09:41 AM
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The Fist of Goodness
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Detroit
Posts: 5
Ha Ha...the clutch job itself wasn't too bad on that old 924, more a case of dealing with issues like rounded off bolts, broken parts and other side-effects of neglect and abuse.

As far as doing repair work goes, I'm pretty capable of handling most tasks. In the past, I've built project cars from the ground-up...and I even owned and worked on a Corrado, so nothing can scare me now!

John - good insight there, concerning the flex disc issue. I wouldn't be too concerned about a part that needs to be replaced, it's part of used car ownership and the automotive hobby in general, but is it something that fails often and needs constant replacement?

Again, resale value is a moot point. I've long since given up on dealing with the hassle of selling cars, so I just don't do it anymore. I buy what I like it and use them up, or trade them off to friends and such.
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Old 06-26-2012, 10:05 AM
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Non Compos Mentis
 
Join Date: May 2001
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My brother-in-law had a 924S with a slushbox tranny for a short while. The tranny makes a very big difference in a 944's driving dynamics, because these cars are more fun at higher rpms, yet the auto tranny shifts at low rpms for fuel mileage. Really takes the fun out of the car.

When driven hard, you get the higher rpms, of course, but for some reason, the car just doesn't have the same "fun-to-drive" aspect as the same car with a manual 5-speed tranny.

YMMV.
Old 06-26-2012, 04:08 PM
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[QUOTE=Wedge of Night;6824007

The only reason I'm considering an automatic, is so that all family members can drive it, if desired.

If you decide to go into an auto keep away from the 944s,since Porsche never offer neither the 951 or S2 with an auto your only option will be the 968 Triptonic which is faster than a S2.You can get a 968 Cab trip pretty easy,finding a trip Coupe will be a little harder but will worth it.Btw the triptonic was available during the complete production of 968 from 92 to 95 but started their life earlier with the 994 & kept on going with the Boxster so you got a transmission which has proven to be very realiable & fun to drive.
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83-944 show room -sold___New ride 93-968 with SC steering wheel-ROW signal ligths- Susp M030 mods lowered,Porsche VA springs- Adjustable struts - Bilstein inserts - Bilstein sport rear -LSD -riding on Cup 1 wheels 17x8 frt 17x9.5 rear road contact Falken 452/ 225-45 ZR Front 255-40 ZR Rear -- Motor Mods /chip /K&N / mod air boxe just love the handling & power
Old 06-26-2012, 04:11 PM
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I need to check Craigslist more often.
Here is an '86 944 with an automatic I think "box A"??



John
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1988 924S 77K July 2017 ...+ 1987 924S 145K DD (+15K est. bad odometer)
Old 06-26-2012, 04:50 PM
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