Mice and Rust: 1964 Chevrolet Corvette

Some restoration projects can be simple, while some are harder, and a few get thrown into the “too hard” basket. This 1964 Corvette is going to require a lot of work, but there seems to be a fair amount of interest in it. It is located in West Chicago, Illinois, and listed for sale here on eBay.

The appearance of the Corvette is less than inviting. A previous owner had apparently decided to prepare the car for a repaint in the 1970s, and this is as far as he got. The car was originally finished in Silver Blue, and traces of this can be seen in various areas around the car. While he doesn’t provide any photos, the owner does state that the frame has extensive rust issues and that the doors do not open. While these two facts may not be related, that combination doesn’t sound particularly promising to me.

A 327ci V8 engine and 4-speed manual transmission are fitted to the car. The engine isn’t the original unit, as it was also replaced in the early 1970s. The Corvette is also fitted with power drum brakes. The news on that front may not be great. The owner states that he hasn’t attempted to start the engine, as mice have taken up residence in the air cleaner and carburetor.

While the dash, wheel, seats, and door trims look fairly reasonable, I’m not so sure about what I believe is an 8-track player on the top of the dash. It looks like an aftermarket unit that’s been bolted there, and there may be some damage to the pad as a result. The other issue to deal with is the fact that the mice that were resident in the air cleaner have sent their cousins to live inside the vehicle. Apparently, they’ve done a lot of damage that isn’t really visible in the supplied shots, and anyone who has tried to restore a car that has had mice living in it will be able to tell you two facts: The smell is pretty awful, and it is also very hard to get rid of.

As I originally said, in spite of all of the problems, this Corvette appears to have sparked some interest out there. At the time of writing, there have been eleven people actively bidding on the car, and this has seen bidding rise to $18,575. So, with the original engine gone, issues with rodent damage, and also what the owner admits are extensive rust issues, potentially this isn’t going to be an easy restoration. Does this fit into the hard category, or would you place it in that “too hard” basket?


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  1. healeydays

    If you aren’t looking at keeping it original, modern frames can be bought, so a rusty frame isn’t the end of the world. With such a frame, you can also update the front end making the car handle alot better. As for the rest, it can all be replaced or fixed…

    Like 9
    • Thomas A. Zebrasky

      I restored a similar car and used a new chassis frame to replace the rotten frame easy enough. I thought I was done. To my surprise there is also a steel cage windshield and front bulkhead frame bonded to the various main body panels that was also rusted beyond repair. Although I finished restoring the car and spent way more than I figured to replace the inner cage and rebond all panels I will never do that again.

      Like 1
  2. Rick H.

    If I had deep pockets and this particular car was on my bucket list, I would buy it and send it to Fantomworks Garage to have it restored. I’ve seen some beautiful Vettes come out of that shop.

    Like 3
  3. MB

    $3,000 – $5,000 for the body and miscellaneous. Tops. Scrap the rest.

    Like 3
  4. CoffeeJoe

    Restore? Hell no. Ya know what a 63 Corvette rides like? Resto mod that beast. Update the suspension, the running gear, and put the classic body on it. Beautiful car with a good ride.

    Like 10
  5. Blk63vette

    Yeah I know what a 1963 Corvette rides like I got one. It rides much nicer than my 1965 C10. This will be a restomod. Clear title you are ready to go. I think it will sell over 20k no problem

    Like 7
  6. MFerrell

    “Basket case” C2’s like this one are depressing. All they do is tell me that I can’t afford a C2…

    Like 7
  7. ben dobreuenaski

    Hi HO Hi HO it’s off to the wrecking yard we go.

    Like 1
  8. JohnC

    Unfortunately, unless you are a wizard with the necessary skills and tools this car screams UPSIDE DOWN.

    But that said, Im like so many of you, I can see myself leaving the light with a huge smile on my face. If I was serious about this car, the current bid is the most Id pay for it, $18,000. And Id do it knowing it will be all up hill with a couple ways to go. I own a C5 and the up keep on that thing is nuts.

    Have to see this Vette up on a lift and then decide the best plan of attack.

    As long as the rodents havent got to the wiring, I breathe a big sigh of relief and move forward on a bid.

    You have to draw the line somewhere on price unless money not an issue, which would make you the exception, and not the rule.

    All that said, DAMN right Id love to own it.

  9. gbvette62

    I’m usually somewhat negative in my comments, about a lot of the Corvettes that come up on here for sale, but I’m not going to be on this car.

    I don’t find the mice to be an issue. Is anyone who’s really serious about properly restoring a car, going to restore it without rebuilding the engine, or replacing the 55 year old wiring and interior?

    The rusty frame doesn’t bother me either. A brand new stock 64 frame can be had for $5000, and with all the resto-mods being built, there are plenty of used original frames out there for $2500-$3500. If someone is looking to build a resto-mod, bare frames start around $10,000. Overall, I think it looks like a pretty complete, straight and original 64 to me.

    With 4 hours to go, and already over $20K, I wouldn’t be surprised to see this car get into the mid twenty’s. That’s not to say that someone trying to restore it, won’t be upside by the time they’re done, but that’s the case with almost any car you try to restore.

    Like 3
  10. Gaspumpchas

    Somebody just bumped it up to 20,200…..Like GBvette said, you could fix it, plan on changing the frame and a complete resto. If you are doing the work could be a great shark, Good luck to the new owner!!



    Like 2
  11. leiniedude leiniedude Member

    Ended: Dec 17, 2018 , 8:49PM
    Winning bid:US $21,289.00
    [ 30 bids ]

  12. plwindish

    Good luck to the winning bidder as he or she will need luck, hard work and a ton of money to get this one back on the road.

    Like 2

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