Live Auctions

Special Salvage Yard Morning


Every once in awhile, I come across a special salvage yard. That was my experience recently when I was in a rural part of North Carolina. We had come in search of an engine/transmission combination for our future race car (more later) and was surprised to find a yard where the owner resisted crushing the older cars they receive. He’s an ex-racer and really enjoys old cars himself, and tries to keep them as long as possible before crushing them. I really enjoyed the trip, and spent a good hour just walking through the yard with my son-in-law, happy to see that parts were being saved for the future. Unlike a lot of yards around here, the owner is open to selling complete cars as well, and some even have titles. It was a very eclectic inventory, with both domestics and imports, although the majority of the older cars were domestics. The cars and truck above are only a small sample of what was there.


One exception to this rule was this Rover 3500, which was happy to donate it’s engine and 5-speed transmission to our future race car, after having been in the yard for three years without them selling a single part from the car. This attractive hatchbacks were only imported to the US for one year, 1980, although they were much more popular in Europe, despite numerous quality control issues. The 3.5 liter aluminum block V8 is the same engine that powered numerous Range Rovers and other British cars after the design was purchased from GM in the 1960’s. The yard owner had the engine and transmission ready to load for us, helped us get it loaded and then turned us loose to walk around the yard at our leisure. What a nice way to spend a morning!


Another unusual find was what I think is a Chevy SportVan–I’m sure someone can correct me if I’m wrong. Despite looking horribly rusty, upon closer examination it was mostly surface rust. Regardless, there were plenty of parts for someone interested.


In addition to the dogs roaming the yard (surprisingly friendly), there were other inhabitants as well. For some reason, these particular spiders seemed to like Hondas and Acuras to build their webs. We were careful not to disturb them; I believe this particular species is harmless anyway but I didn’t want to find out the hard way! Take a look at the rest of the pictures and identify what you can in the comments!


  1. Mark E

    I consider this to be one of the lost joys of my childhood, spending Saturdays wandering the junkyards with my father. (I’d almost always have a few badges or emblems to add to my collection when we were done) Sadly there are NO salvage yards within the county that I live in now. In some ways the EPA has reduced the quality of life…

    Oh and re: those yellow & black spiders, I vividly remember how they spun webs about face-height (for a first grader) in the wheat field behind our house! ^_^

  2. wynkin

    Beautiful Wasp Spider (Argiope bruennichi) the reason for the distinctive zigzag is unknown,but it may attract insects or easily seen by mammals so they avoid breaking the web.

  3. JW454

    I’ll take a shot at a few of these.

    #1 68’~72’ Chevrolet C10 – 1971 Monte Carlo 2 dr. – 66’~67 Pontiac tempest 4 dr. sedan
    #3 68’~69’ Chevrolet Sport van
    #4 Scary looking spider
    #5 1987 Ford Crown Victoria – 1964 Chevrolet Chevy II 4 dr. sedan (I think it’s a ’63 but the windshield says ’64 so…)
    #6 1966 Chevrolet Impala 4dr. Sedan – late 70’s Chevrolet Camper Special Pick-up
    #7 1969 Pontiac Bonneville 4 dr. sport hardtop
    #9 1972 Pontiac Lemans w/ an incorrectly placed GTO emblem (may have the GTO Appearance option too)
    #10 1971 Chevrolet Chevelle Malibu 4 dr. sedan
    #11 1968 Pontiac Executive 4 dr. Sedan

    My best guesses so if I’m wrong, let me have it.

  4. Ed P

    My father’s cousin owned a auto scrap yard. In the late 60’s he told my father he had to sell the older stuff to scrappers due to taxes on the oldest cars. I don’t know if this was only in Maryland, but it was an effort to clean up the landscape. I wonder how many cars went to the crusher because of this?

  5. Pete

    I have a chevy c-20 that sure could use that bed if the conditions are right? Where is this junkyard located?

  6. Barzini

    I had high hopes for the Desert Car Kings show that revolved around a massive junk yard. Instead of focusing on the interesting aspects of the business, it was just another car flipper show with manufactured drama and a lot of yelling.

  7. Darrell

    I live in eastern N.C.,where is this yard??? I also like to walk through them. Will you share??

    • ricky west

      West Auto Salvage 5307 NC Hwy 11 N Bethel NC 27812 PH#252-825-1248 open 8-5 m-f 8-12 sat

  8. Steve

    Being new to this site, I’m curious why the address or contact info for these yards is never included?

  9. Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

    I’m more than willing to share :-). West Auto Salvage, Bethel, NC–you can find them by googling. Tell Ricky I said “Hi!”

    • Steve

      Thanks! Fewer and fewer yards keep the old ones around anymore. Appreciate it.

      BTW I’m gussing everyone has already read this, but the funniest salvage yard visit story ever is here–

  10. Chuck Foster Chcuk F 55chevy

    The Porsche 944 is probably the hardest to guess the year, but it does have the very desirable Fuchs wheels, and looks pretty complete. I had never seen that Rover, neat looking for a 4 door, I have the same engine in my 1980 TR8, the original carbs/intake get changed out a lot for 4 barrels.

    • Jeff Staff

      I noticed those wheels as well….definitely worth some moola.

      • Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

        Jeff, there were three more black ones in the hatchback. He was eager to sell anything from the 944…

  11. Jeff Staff

    Jealous. Summer Saturdays automatically become beach days in our house, so I’ve been on hiatus. Looking forward to getting back out there when the fall weather arrives.

  12. roger

    I sure could use the front axle out of that chevy G10 van.

    • ricky west

      ill sell it Roger $350.00 plus tax complete from wheel to wheel including steering gear and linkage picked up here

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