What’s This Ford Fairlane Worth?

1963 Ford Fairlane field find

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Update 4/3/14 – Now we get to see what Doug’s Fairlane really is worth! He has listed it here on eBay and even took out a reader classifieds ad over there on the side of the page. The car looks good and we are excited to see what it goes for. Thanks Doug!

From 3/15/14 – A few days ago, reader Doug M contacted us about an idea for a new feature and we have to say, we love the idea! The title for his proposed feature, “What’s this Car Worth?”, describes the theme perfectly. Doug currently has this 1963 Ford Fairlane Sport Coupe parked in his shop and can’t decide whether he should invest more money into it or cut it lose to make room for other projects. Not being a Ford guys, he isn’t sure if it makes sense to fix all of the issues, just the major problems, or if he should just sell it before he’s in too deep. We aren’t experts on Ford Fairlanes, but with the collective wisdom of the BF community we should be able to give him a better idea of what it’s worth, if it makes sense to invest more money into it, and how to better present his old beater when it comes time to sell. We think this new feature type will be a great way for all of us to learn about what to do with our finds and projects. There are some ground rules though that we want to lay out beforehand so that everyone can have fun and learn together. The rules and more information about Doug’s car are right after the break.

Ford Fairlane sport coupe

For this to work we need everyone to share their knowledge, experiences, and opinions, but let’s keep things friendly and fun. So, please no one-liners calling this a “piece of junk”! If you think it’s worth x amount of dollars, please tell us why. Don’t feel like you have to limit your commentary to just the positives of this car. For example, being a six-cylinder car might be a negative mark against the value and is something we all want to hear about and discuss. Don’t feel that the conversation has to be just about valuations either, if there is something interesting about the Ford Fairlane that you want to share, please feel free to do so! If you have great memories or experiences with a Fairlane, please share. At the end of the day, this new feature type is about everyone sharing, learning, and having fun, so please keep that in mind. Now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to Doug’s Fairlane!

Dougs Fairlane

Understanding how this car came to Doug is important in advising him on what to do with it. We often get so tied up in just one aspect of valuing a car. For us it’s usually about what we paid for the car, but we often overlook the cost of fixing it. When you’re on a tight budget, you have to think about what a project is really going to cost in the end. On the initial investment front, Doug got lucky as he received the car in trade for unpaid rent. We won’t go into the exact amount, but so far he has more in repairs than what it cost him to aquire the car.

Ford Fairlane interior

Doug has already done a lot of work to his Ford, but has tried to keep his expenses to a minimum. So far he has drained the tank, changed the oil, installed a new fuel pump, filters, clutch, throw out bearing, ignition switch, and rebuilt the carburetor. He has the motor running well, but the brakes barely work and first gear doesn’t work at all. The right front fender was damaged when he got it, but he had a new fender painted and installed. The interior is in serious need of attention, but he has some parts for it. He has done some research on getting the transmission rebuilt and the interior redone, but isn’t sure where to go from here. The 3-speed will cost between $500 and $1000 to rebuild, but he wonders if it’s worth keeping it stock, if it would be better to install a different engine and transmission, or if he should just sell it with the bad gear.

Cleaned out Fairlane interior

The interior is one of Doug’s other major concerns. When he got it, it was full of mouse nests and one of the front seats was completely missing. He cleaned it out and located a replacement seat, but all the upholstery needs to be redone. Redoing the whole interior could get expensive, so he isn’t sure whether to tackle it or leave it for the next owner to take on. Since he isn’t planning on keeping it long term, he is leaning towards leaving it, but he knows the impact that could have on resell.

Fairlane in the shop

Most of us have been in Doug’s shoes when it comes to deciding what to do with a project. Even if it’s a labor of love, there is always that question of whether to restore or leave things alone. We are just glad that Doug trusted us to bring his dilemma here for advice. So if this were your project, what would you do with it? Would you do more to it or would you leave it as is and move it along? If you were to do more, what things would you focus on? If you moved it along, what would you do to make it an easier sale? Let us know and if you are curious what your car might be worth or would just like to get everyone’s advice on what to do with it, send us an email here at mail@barnfinds.com!

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. Beach Roo

    What is it worth? That is subjective with a project like this… It is a rare find. Personally, I would keep it as a project as it is rare in this configuration. What I would do first is look it up on a enthusiast web site to see if this car is as rare as I believe it to be…

    My best friend had a 63 Futura convertible in High School,,, We did a lot of work on it over s summer…Was a red one that looked a lot like the one Brad Pitt drove in Ocean’s 11…Unlike that car, it had good paint, top and interior Wasn’t much of a looker compared to my Mustang, but it was honest and fun to drive with the top down.

    I would be inclined to keep it as a restomod over a full restoration. Body looks fairly straight. But I do have questions: How are the floor pans? May be a bit tough to find replacements, but they can be made…Interior is the interior, it has to be re upholsand the door panels replaced. I would personally see if the tranny is salvageable… They were pretty robust in that car. I believe the 3 speed was the same one later used in the A series Mustangs (As most of the underpinnings of the Mustang were from the Falcon in 64/65). Is there a 3 speed from an old Mustang available? Might be less expesnive to locate one of those than the rebuild.

    I think it would be a fun project and the bones look good… As to what it is worth, that is subjective. Restored to the right buyer could bring some cash, but not tens of thousands of dollars. But to someone who had one growing up, the car could be priceless.

    There are some cool things that can be done with the engine… Even a 6 cylinder can have some

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    • scot

      ~ first, thanks to Doug M. & BarnFind for a fresh and interesting presentation of the general theme of our binding compulsion. we have all come to this site for similar reasons and how each of us view particular project cars and sharing our opinion has built the collective knowledge of a car-obsessed community.
      – Beach Roo begins the dialogue with the subjective nature of the Fairlane’s value. Doug is starting off in the red. bad debt, time and money to assess the problems, parts and labor to make it move under its own power. i see easily $1500 to $2000 spent to this point. if it were a Thunderbolt that would be nothing compared to final value, but its only a drop in the bucket so far as the expense of bringing the car to completion.
      – i’m on the fence, here. finish up the brakes, secure the front seat then reassess the project. we don’t know Doug’s area of expertise or perhaps the decisions might be more clear.
      – i’m looking forward to the opinions of other readers and to upcoming features. should prove to be a learning experience for us all.

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      • compuglobalhypermeganet

        ~ It has been made clear to me that mistakes in judgement are quite easy to make, however they’re extremely difficult to overcome.

        ~ There is no better money spent on a car…than the previous owner’s.

        ~ It’s probably useful to keep in mind that there’s a big difference between a cheap project car and a cheap project.

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  2. C Bryant

    Would make a good daily driver for around $3500. A lot of cheaper ones out there but more “toasty”.

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  3. Jim-Bob

    The thing is, there is a lot of missing information about the car that makes it difficult to decide what to do. We don’t even know exactly what engine is in it. That being said, it looks like a solid car to build from and I bet I can imagine a good setup for it.

    Since the transmission is toast, and a 3 speed, I would ditch it. I would also ditch the stock engine at the same time as the bellhousing pattern won’t work with the transmission I would want to use. What I would do is install the 5.0 engine and T-5 transmission out of a 1987-1993 Ford Mustang, right down to the EFI system and EEC IV computer (optionally, a modern stand alone EMS could be used). From there, I would swap out the stock cam for an E-303, the heads for an aftermarket aluminum set (I really like Edelbrock’s stuff because it seems well engineered), a set of quality headers that fit the chassis and possibly an aftermarket intake manifold. The exhaust would naturally be 2.5 in with a set of 3 chamber Flowmasters and a crossover pipe because a 5.0 Mustang with this setup is the best sounding engine I have ever heard. I would also go with a Centerforce clutch as the ones I have driven with T-5s have been much easier to live with than less expensive, heavier clutches. I would also try to use a T-5 clutch cable swap kit as is available for the Falcon and Mustang since it’s the only way to operate the pull type cable clutch from a Mustang.

    The suspension is a little more difficult to plan here simply because my knowledge of the Fairlane is not as good as it is for a Mustang or Falcon. However, I think they share a common front suspension setup (with differing track widths like with the Mustang and Falcon). If this is so, there are a few cheap upgrades that can make it slightly less awful. Number one would be to find a set of brakes and spindles from a Granada or Monarch. As those cars also share early Falcon underpinnings (as do the Maverick/Comet twins and the Versailles), the spindles are a bolt in swap. I would also consider the “Shelby mod” of moving the upper control arm by drilling two new holes in the shock tower and improving the geometry. Now for the rear suspension, I would continue to borrow from the 80’s/90’s Ford passenger car box of tricks and install a traction lok 8.8. There are several widths available, with the Mustang being the narrowest. This would require cutting off the trailing arm mounts and welding on new leaf spring perches. The rearend I would try to use is from the Lincoln Mark VII LSC, as it comes standard with disc brakes and, unlike the Mustang, 5 lug axles. Alternately, you could see if a Panther chassis (Crown Vic, etc.) has the same width as it has a much improved and larger set of disc brakes (after 1991) and can sometimes be found with a factory LSD too. With those, look for one with factory dual exhaust as they typically came with better gearing (3.27 vs 2.73, if memory serves). As an added bonus, using an 8.8 also lets you use the flanged driveshaft attachment to the pinion yoke, allowing you to possibly use a factory driveshaft (many possibilities here. install the parts and then go to the junkyard to measure everything from the cars I mentioned earlier to Aerostar vans, Ranger pickups and Explorers.) Using all these newer parts has the added benefit of making the car easy to service with readily available parts rather than sourcing rare pieces from the past that can take some time to find.

    Cosmetically, I like how the body looks now. However, the interior really needs doing. I would leave the factory blue but re-do it with a reproduction interior kit. Given time and patience, this is a DIY job with a few special tools and materials (notably, hog ring pliers and hog rings-try Tractor Supply for these as they really are used with hogs!). For the wheels, yeah, I am a child of the 90’s and to me nothing works quite as well on an old musclecar as a set of Weld Draglites. However, they were never really intended to go round corners all that well, so I would also consider a set of modern reproduction Torq-Thrusts in 15×9 (or 15×8) in the rear and 15×7 in the front. I would probably go with 235-60 15’s up front and 275-50-15’s out back-depending on fitment and how closely the sidewall heights matched. And why yes… They would be a set of raised white letter BFG T/A’s!

    Now, I considered going in other directions too, like making it handle and stop like a modern car. Let’s be honest though-that’s simply not in the car’s character. Plus, it’s not a car that needs a ton of restructuring. I don’t see major rot and so there’s no point to cutting up a good original shell. It’s also more realistic to build a car from mostly junkyard and bolt together components rather than an orgy of fabrication that most of us have neither the time nor the talent and facilities to build. Instead I focused on making it drive better in modern traffic and making it easier to use and maintain on a regular basis. I prefer EFI for this reason as it makes cold starts better and decreases fuel consumption when working properly (which it mostly does in a well designed system like the Ford EEC IV). I also have a thing for bigger brakes as I feel it is one thing most classics desperately need so they don’t wind up smashing into the rear of a Toyota Yaris that can stop from 60 about 70-100 feet shorter. I would also use a big cooling system and A/C, as well as a nicely concealed stereo system, because they make the car usable and comfortable. There’s plenty of other details to consider too, but they are far too numerous to go into here.

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    • compuglobalhypermeganet

      ~ Who the hell turned 2 thumbs-down on this well reasoned opinion???
      You, Jim-Bob, obviously have a better history of experience and a clearer grasp on the planning process than I have.
      ~ Thank you for the insight.

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      • Jim-Bob

        Thanks for the kind words! I write posts like this all the time both here and at other sites too (I did a reimagining of the Honda Motocompo scooter on Japanese Nostalgic Car in the same sitting I wrote this Fairlane build). Not all of them are the same but they all come from my fertile imagination and ability to see how things can work and not just how they did work “back in the day”. I think that the hot rodders of the past would do what I do and try to use whatever technology is available instead of being confined to the “rules” we seem to have set today. So, I set out to figure out how to make something work as I want it to work and be what I think it can be. For example, right now I am learning all I can about 3D printing (and microcontrollers) so that I can build one over the summer and use it to make parts for my projects. This may not be the way it has always been done, but I think it is a great way to do it if it is available to you. (Look at some 3D printers on Youtube. You will be amazed and what can be built for $300)

        For this car, I saw a good daily driver and for me that meant a bolt in V8 swap from a 20 year old Mustang. I guess the down votes were from those who still fear EFI (or maybe 4 wheel disc brakes?). I don’t as only two vehicles I have ever owned came without it. I can tune carburators just fine but don’t prefer them if I can avoid it. If someone else likes them better then they will stick to them as there is no one right way to build a car (but there are thousands of wrong ones!). Sometimes though, it is fun to think outside the box and let your creativity and knowledge be your guide.

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  4. Craig Ogren

    I think a donor 5.0 mustang is the way to go with this car. I always liked this body style and I’m a Chevy guy. Just seems like it might be a fun driver

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  5. Bob mccaskill

    Jim-bob,pretty much said it in the first paragraph.these little Fords are fun to drive and extremely hard to find.yours is really a nice specimen.I would go with a mustang 5.0,5 speed.the interior is gonna be costly to replicate,but well worth it..all said,you will have one of the most fun cars you have ever driven.this is the light ,small ,version of the Falcon sprint.Very fast with the original 260,but a force to be respected with a moderate street/race 5.0..if you really want to have fun,put the three speed back in it and watch the performance..have fun.

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  6. Brady Neros

    Looks like a nice dry car to start with. Toss a mild 289 in it, find a good used 3 or 4 speed for it, and put a new set of guts in it. You’d have a nice, unique little daily driver!

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  7. Wade

    I have one of these cars. If you want to do it on the cheap, swap in a mid 80s 3 speed with overdrive from a ford pickup. They can be had very reasonably (probably $100-300 max). They also bolt right up and require no mods to the trans crossmember.

    For the interior I would go to a place called Falcons and Comets. They specialize in 60s Ford interiors and cost the same as Macs. Get the seat covers and carpet set from them and clean up the rest.

    For the brakes, rebuild the back and do the Granada swap up front (spindles, calipers, rotors, and tie rod ends) or just rebuild the stock fronts. Swap the master for the Granada as well (direct bolt in) and the car will stop fine.

    Other front options would be a complete Mystang II front suspension conversion from Rod and Custom Motorsports if you want to spend $2500 for the complete kit. It is a really good kit but only do it if you plan to keep the car.

    As is it may be worth 3 to maybe 4k. Running and driving in stock form maybe 6k on a good day. Done nicely with some tasteful mods and a V8 maybe 12 on a good day.

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  8. Mike P

    My Dad taught me a valuable lesson that still applies to all cars, something is worth what someone is willing to pay for it. But I want to add to it, in the realm of cars, they are a big part of our culture and in the case of this group a part of our passion for life. One mans junk is another mans treasure, maybe because of an experience with a car, time of your life when you owned one hard to say what triggers it but most of us have it. I have a 57 t bird, I first saw advertised on the Tennessee Ernie ford show have no idea why I was only 7 at the time but it stuck and I bought when I was 20 still have it today at 64, also added a lot of incredible memories to my relationship with this car along the way

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  9. Graham Lloyd

    The 62 and 63 Fairlanes have always seemed to be an orphaned Ford. I’ve always liked them simply because my folks bought a 62 new and kept it until 1966.

    For whatever reason, when you do see one, it is either a well maintained original, a subtle street machine, or an absolute wreck. And they never appear too often. Just not a car that everyone wants for some reason.

    This one looks to be a nice clean slate for a subtle street machine. If Doug wants to put the time and money into it. Otherwise, since the engine is running fine and the tranny is the problem, find a replacement (they aren’t that hard to find), get it safe to drive (NAPA has all the parts) and just enjoy it. The upholstery might be a bit of a problem, but blankets can suffice for now.

    Value? Unfortunately not very much as far as resale. (couple grand?) But as a cheap, fun little car, keep the total cost under 4 grand to get it on the road and drive it for 3 or 4 years. By then the fun factor will outweigh the investment and the car will owe Doug nothing. Can’t beat that.

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  10. J.W.

    IMO this car in it’s current condition is worth no more than $1,000 because while the body looks good what it would take to restore to factory and car show condition would scare most guys away since not everyone has the talent or cash to pay someone to do it and while it has a following of car guys that I have seen on fordmuscle.com these guys do all their own work from beginning to end. Now that my opinion is out of the way I will explain what I would do if it were my car and I wanted to keep it or try to sell it no matter which the cost would be the same.

    Make it a daily driver that someone who wants and old car to just use as a work vehicle to save miles on his/her new musclecar or just a weekend cruiser that they could go to car cruises while not having to compete for a trophy.
    1. The floorboards look like they are salvageable with the exception of what’s under that console which if I’m correct you could ask around and find a friend or a bodyshop that would fabricate a new trans tunnel then weld it in while not cutting an opening for shifter until you know what your going to do with drivetrain.
    2. Now as far as drivetrain I would replace the current 6 cyl. and 3 speed stick with a 200 cu. in. 6 out of a later Mustang say 67/68 ( I had a 67 with 200 and it was plenty enough power for a cruiser ) and I would try to find one with the matching 3 peed automatic WHY because it would be easier to install without worrying about clutch linkage and you can buy most shifter parts new for early Mustangs plus another advantage to a automatic is more buyers as not everyone knows how to drive a manual transmission.
    3.The suspension I don’t know how many miles are on the car but if it sat in a field most likely the rubber parts are shot so I would rebuild the front end with what was mentioned before with a Granada conversion for the disc brakes which you could go hunt parts at a local pick & pull or there are kits out there for this where someone else has done the work for you then replace other rubber components up front such as tie rod ends etc. then check coil springs for sag and replace if need be maybe add a anti sway bar for extra stability cornering and new shocks, now the rear I would replace the rear springs and go thru the rear drum brakes and lines with all new parts, for a local cruiser the rear drums will work fine, now if you go with an atuo trans you will have to get the driveshaft shortened.
    4. Fuel system, sounds like you have that covered as you have drained tank and installed new filter while getting existing motor to run.
    5. Wheels and tires, those magnums look just fine and if tires are any good at all I would just sell with them on it.
    6.Interior, I’m not positive but I think you can get most if not everything you need from TMI.
    7. Wiring, now without seeing under the dash I don’t know if the wiring is a hack job or if the mice that were building nests used some of the wiring or not, if there’s one thing that will turn off most people besides rust it’s a hacked up electrical system, if it’s not butchered and all lights and accessories work that’s a plus if not there are companies that have replacement harnesses but only replace what needs to be to keep cost down.
    8. Exhaust, I would just go with a standard single exhaust system with either a stock muffler or a nice turbo muffler as you are going to try and sell the car as a daily driver not a race car.
    Now in my opinion you should be able to accomplish this for about no more than $3500 as most people throw away 6 bangers w/auto trans so they are cheap and if you do all the work yourself except the trans tunnel it could be easily done so with what you have in it and another $3500 I would say you could maybe get 6K to 7k to the right buyer but it will take awhile to find that right buyer as with any old car it’s worth what someone will pay.

    Now I will give you my experience on this subject so you know I’m not some internet blowhard, I’ve owned 4 GTO’s 66/2 67s/70, my wife is a Mustang nut she has owned 4 a 67coupe / a 78 Cobra / a 95 GT and now a 70 Mach1, we have also owned a 68 Chevy 4×4 and a 73 Ford Bronco with a 351 W. Now all of these cars we bought running but heeded work either body or mechanical and in some cases both except for the 78 Cobra and the 95 GT which the wife bought new. Now I don’t buy cars to make money I buy them restore as much to original as possible but with safety upgrades in mind so my wife can drive them with out worry then we drive them for a few years then sell them for a modest profit to start a new project. Well now the 70 Mach1 was purchased for her as a 25 wedding anniversary present 8 yrs ago, I bought it off the internet for 14K thinking it was a nice daily driver and a car she could take to a few car shows without much work, was I wrong after seeing rust bubbles around rear quarters and then having paint stripped we ended up replacing half the sheet metal then since I never expected her to want to sell it I went balls out on upgrades, new painless wiring / AOD trans / 4 wheel disc brakes / MSD ignition / upgraded cooling system because it has A/C and a color change of interior with a nice sound system, total investment with cost of car 53K, now after three yrs showing it and numerous trophies she wants another first generation Bronco to daily drive plus take to some shows BUT the Mach1 was appraised at 45K but we can’t even get the 42K we put as a reserve in an auction so I do know what it takes to be conservative when it comes to doing a old car. Sorry for the book I wrote but I feel you need to be informed on what I have done plus know my opinion on what you are trying to accomplish.

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  11. Bryan Cohn

    As he received the car as payment for a debt, shouldn’t we guess the end result is he wants to sell the car to recoup his losses. As it a car he has the potential to make even more than the debt, which leads to the questions of what to do. I think its safe to assume Doug has no plan to keep the car.

    With that in mind we go back to basics. A car that can be driven sells easier than one that can’t. Thus its gotta have some kind of front seats. I think I’d bolt in the ones he has, toss a styling blanket or two over them and call the seating fixed.

    Brakes are kind of required in order to drive so I’d fix them. The question is full brake service or bare minimum to make it stop? Sticking to the theme, fix what is wrong so it stops and call it good. As they are brakes Doug might spend a little more here as it might be worthwhile to install new hoses and we all know they’ll be cheap. A through brake inspection will tell him everything he needs to know.

    For the gearbox I’d try to find a good used one or rebuild the one in the car, but do so be only replacing the bad synchro or gear and new gaskets/seals. None of this all new bearings/throw parts at it just cause nonsense. The goal is to make it have all the gears work, not shift like the newest T-56. It is after all a 50 year old 3 speed.

    Its now a sellable classic that should sell if advertised right and honestly. Since we don’t know the debt its hard to say if Doug will come out ahead or not.

    Many will say what I’ve outlined above is dishonest or not right, etc. Not true at all. I tried to look at it from the most practical point of view which is the owner recovering his debt as cash as quickly and cheaply as possible while selling the car as an imperfect but drivable piece. Throwing piles of money at it for engine/trans swaps, new interiors etc do nothing to ensure speedy recovery from the debt and the hours invested have value as well. Time is money.

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  12. Brian

    I would never advise anyone who doesn’t absolutely love a car to attempt a restoration. The fact that he is so unsure of what to do with it points to the car, at some point and in some condition, being for sale. If you decide to restore, make sure your ready to commit to the end (yes, its going to cost way more than you expect and likely more than it’s worth) and either be prepared to hold onto the car for at least 5 years afterward, use it and enjoy it, then sell it knowing that your enjoyment of using it was justification for the time, effort, and money that went into it. There is almost no way to set a tight budget and stick to it in automotive restoration. There is always something that will blindside you and blow a budget out of the water. Look at your lifestyle also, does your spouse support and encourage this restoration? Do you have young children with whom you’d prefer spending your time off with as opposed to wrenching in the garage? Can you realistically afford to invest 10-20 thousand dollars into this restoration? If the answer is no to any of these, go ahead and move the car to someone who can restore it. I don’t recall reading about the owner’s automotive know how (or maybe I just missed it), but if he has to “farm out” alot or most of the work, I’d say forget it. There isn’t alot of profit on reselling this car if its sent out for a restoration. If the object is to sale, I’d just get all the pieces back on the car so it’s complete and try to get it running, if not driveable, and sell it or trade it for something newer, like a Honda or Toyota, which are much, much more flipper friendly.

    As for selling it as is, the value would be somewhere between the value of whatever it was traded for (how much you have invested) and the book value, or less if he got alittle to excited about the trade. Car restoration is hard, often times expensive work that is never really complete as is the nature of machines. It’s best to know what your getting into so you will be happy with the process and the final product.

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  13. Kevin

    According to Hagerty’s valuation tool the average 63 Fairlane 6 cylinder is worth 11k, and even a number 3 is worth $4400. Considering that a number three is either a parts car or a car that needs everything I’d say this is a number three. While I find 4400 to be a bit of a stretch i things 3500 is more realistically is. That being said, 63 Fairlanes can be very, very cool and in my mind as cool as any 65-66 Mustang notchback. I don’t see any issue with putting some money in it. I’d try to find a nice running 289, 4 speed setup. Should be able to find a complete drop in setup for 1500-2000 maybe. I’d leave the paint as is for now – it kind of has a cool patina going on. The interior needs a full stock restore though. I’m not sure how available and cheap the kits are but maybe 2000? Bottom line is its a nice solid car and if you can keep it under 10K you surely won’t get hurt.

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    • Doug M.Member

      Kevin, This is the owner…. lots of great advice, in all these posts, but yours fits the best with what I might be thinking…. and is one of the few that offered pricing info. Thanks so much for your input! …and yes, an interior runs about $2k… and I love small 289’s with a 4 speed!

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  14. Tim H

    I think the key is that Doug is not planning to keep it. Make it run, drive and stop because that makes a big difference in price and sale-ability. Then do what is cheap. Throw some carpet, seat covers, clean it, shine it up and then let the next owner decide on mods.
    All my cars are modified and I bought them for less then half of what it would cost me to build them.

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  15. John

    Value is in the eye of the beholder with these cars. I agree that in its current state, its not worth more then 1K, but then end result could go for a few dollars more. A friends of mine brother’s Earl and Joe Blasingame restored these and the little Ranchero along with the 60 series VW wagons. The value of these cars were in their love of them, but I think the time they spent together working on these was where they found their true value.

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  16. Adam Alward

    my buddy has a 64 fairlane and its red on red car from factory its a 289 with factory 4 speed it needs restoration its complete and hes asking $4500 its never been restored needs a rear quarter and 2 floor pans and maby a trunk panso there u go so i think if the car in the pic is a 6 cyclinder car all together i think is worth about $2500 – $3000 the way it sits. it looks decent

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  17. Kevin Sneed

    I have a ’69 Fairlane 4 door with the in-line six. Not exactly a desireable collector car, but that’s not what matters. I love it. I love to drive it, and I get a lot of thumbs up and comments from people. It makes me feel good, and that’s all that really matters.

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  18. sunbeamdon

    Most interesting variation on the usual BF posting; that it is getting as many, long winded, and thought-out responses says you (we??) are onto something! Keep it up!

    I’m a Ford kinda guy, so the car interested me. But, love is in the eye of the beholder, however, all I behold is a bucket of cash goin’ down the drain. This car has only modest “special interest” appeal and, without more info, not a lot of value here.

    I do like the “floor board”!

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  19. David G

    Soft spot for the 63 Fairlanes since my first car at 14 y.o. was a 4-door one with a 221 V-8 (the very FIRST SB Ford v8, introduced in the 1962 Fairlanes), altho in $40 junkyard grab condition when my Dad grabbed it for me as a Christmas present! 63 is a great year for the Fairlane imo, still has the baby fins (unlike 64) but not the goofy wraparound 59 Edsel-ish Headlight bezels of the inaugural 62 Fairlanes. And this one’s a Sport Coupe to boot, wow! Whatever he does with it, it’ll be a nifty car but i, as always, vote for as close to authentic as possible since these cars were really great in Detroit-built form – look really super when sporting the upgrade FoMoCo spinner wheel covers available for them back then…

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  20. Rancho Bella

    Before I was a Lotus guy…..I was a Ford guy……….oh’ wait…..Elans’ have Ford blocks and trannys………guess I’m still a Ford guy.

    ’63 was pivotal year for the wonderful Ford small block V8. In ’63 Ford was making 260’s and 289’s at the same time. ’63 was the first HiPo 289 in a Fairlane.
    As for this one? it needs a bunch. $1500.00

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    • David G

      Make that 221s, 260s, and 289s since the 221 was production from 62-63 only…

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  21. DT

    Location,Location,Location……..transportation can add up!

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  22. ConservativesDefeated

    I am not interested in restomods. To someone like me, the value of this car is in its originality. So to maximize it future potential value, I would rebuild the tranny and sort out the interior to orignal.

    They are only original once. And by that I mean built as they came from the factory

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  23. Art M

    If it was mine..and I was going to keep it, I would swap in a later model Ford pickup 300 6 cyl, with the 3 speed,,,run a single exhaust, and do the brakes, to get some stopping power. Nothing radical. A couple of blankets, for the seats, bigger rad, fix any holes in the floor and drive it. I like the magnum wheels on it, and if the tires are beat, replace them with wrecking yard tires..

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  24. Roland Doucet

    Any car from that era is worth restoring. If not for the antique value and return on your money, then for the experience of fixing, owning and driving a piece of American history. I’ve attended many cruise nights in the last few years, and the folks who show up in Grandpa’s six cylinder all-door sedan get as much enjoyment as the dude who drives in with his ’67 Corvette Sting Ray.

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  25. Don Andreina

    I have zero experience doing up a car, but I have owned a few and none of them were under twenty years old. Every car I have bought that has had work done on it would have been sold to me at a loss. I cannot stress that last sentence enough.

    The best advice I can give you is to consider from the buyer’s POV and work to that. Your own labour aside, do the mathematics on this. Work backwards from what you can actually sell this for, it may be more beneficial in the long run to sell this with minimal work than to go the whole hog. These cars get better money here in Australia than the US prices being mentioned here, but of course transport plays a part. If you are prepared to transport it, there are also enthusiasts in countries like Sweden who like US metal. Big upfront investment for you, but worth the mention.

    If you are in no immediate need of the cash, and have a place to store this, you will save money just waiting for the right parts to pop up at jumbles or online.

    This site is populated by very passionate car people many of whom spend time on their cars just because they love doing the work themselves, but in the end you are trying to recoup a debt. That should be your rule of thumb. Good luck, Doug.

    This should be an interesting series, Josh and Jesse. Unless a vehicle pops up that I have actually owned, I will be sitting back and just reading the advice of others. But when it comes to the money side of this game, all those who submit for this series need to take any passion out of the equation. Some of this advice would appear a bit obvious, but when it comes to cars, many lose all sense of rationality.

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  26. jim s

    this is what a $300 back lot special looked like after i was done driving it. the signed title would be on the dash. i would have drained the gas tank, not that there would have been much in it because as soon as the transmission started going south i would only have filled it to 1/4 tank. those wheels would not have been on the car as i would have already sold/repaced with steel, but if i had not then the car would have been left setting on brake drums/frame. i only cared that they were safe, could get me where i need to go and cost less to run then a car payment. i would already had my next $300 car ready to go. now this car can not be even a daily driver with out a lot of money been spent. it does not have a frame ( untibody i think), has rust and i could go on. also i see that the AMC twin stick sold for $2275 and it ran maybe. love to look at this but would not spend money on it. sell it as is to someone who is in love with it.

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  27. Scott B.

    I have a ’62 Fairlane 500 with a 351 Cleveland 4 speed and bucket seats. That one is a Sport Coupe so I wouldn’t sell it for less than $1000, maybe more. If the rear frame rails are solid It would be worth rebuilding but would probably be nice to use a 5.0 w/efi and a C4 or 5 speed. A friend has a ’66 Mustang with the 5.0 efi and 5 speed and 2.73 gears and gets 26 mpg highway. The rear leaf springs are inside the frame rails and it will fit a 10 inch slick or wide tires with Argent rims (14×7) without modification! My 351C barely fits after grinding off the extra tabs on the manifolds. A 351W would fit better but there are many stroker 302 kits cheap now so I would use one of those and make it fly! Remember the rearend is a few inches narrower than a Mustang. If you want, put in a older Ford “smooth” 9 inch from a 57-59 Fairlane. It’s the narrowest stock 9″ you’ll find. Finished value should be high just because the Sports Coupe is rare.

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  28. rusty

    I think more importantly as this is a great idea and Jesse is offering this service that the owner of these question and answer cars should when they sell them pay Jesse to put it on Readers Classifieds..its only $20 once you list it on say Cl and he links to your advert..

    seems fair.

    disclaimer: I am not associated to Jesses’ fine blog..I’m in aussie and also have no helpful knowledge to impart on these wonderful Yankee cars but think both Doug and Jesse are onto something..I think it fair to say perhaps as doug came up with this idea he may get a free listing on Jesses’ Free Clasifieds…

    but i’d like to see the owners inject more to the comments though.as many are having troubles assessing when there is missing info.

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  29. Doug M.Member

    @ Rusty, I am the owner of this car… thanks to ALL for their great ideas and suggestions! The 5.0 conversion comments seem to rule, but the variety of insights is awesome. I had stayed out of the exchange, not wanting to hound with bits of trivia along the way, but your comments on owner interaction could actually add some more interest. If I had added along the way it would be: motor size is a 170 six cylinder (the smallest one), floor boards do not have any rust issues, blue paint, except for a little surface area to clean up… the matt floor liners are still in place and look like rusty floors, the average mustang 3 speed does NOT line up with this early model… those who know here locally confirmed that, and that’s about all…
    My conclusion (since I have several other projects going, and the upside price point seems to be so close to my projected costs) is to put the seats back in, and peddle it as-is to someone who wants to do the fix-and-keep to their own specs… Thanks for all the great comments! -Doug

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    • scot

      ~ your input is appreciated, Doug. and best of luck!

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  30. John S

    Be patient. I ended a project to soon and regret it terribly. What’s it worth? As a fun hobby, priceless. As it sits, 3,000$ USD. Once completed with love and attention to detail, priceless.

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  31. BxK

    If the intent is to not keep it very long, I would say clean it up real good and make it drivable.
    Fix the brakes and mount the seats. Don’t worry so much about replacing the upholstery. At this point you don’t know which way the new owner will want to go with it. Pop the cover off of the transmission and see if you can figure out what is wrong, might be an easy fix.
    Running and driving, I would try to get $3000. Make it dependable = ask for more.
    I love old cars, I would have a hard time parting with it.
    Good luck, Have fun.

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  32. Barry Thomas

    Knowing he’s never going to get his money back, this has to be a love or leave project. I like the restomod opinions. I wasn’t a big fan of the ’63, but my 2nd car in university was a buttercup yellow/tan buckets ’64 Fairlane 500 Sport Coupe that I bought in ’69. The 1964 had a nicly smoothed out rear end. Remember when cars rusted? Well my front fenders started bubbling shortly after I bought it. Then engine problems. My dad sold it for me, but didn’t make sure the ownership was changed. We found this out, when the police called about a hit and run. And as they say, that’s a story for another time. Thanks for letting me reminisce.
    Barry Thomas’ “Wheel to Wheel” blog

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  33. okiedude

    Why is there no copy in the Ebay ad? I realize “A picture is worth a thousand words”, but 55 pictures and zero copy doesn’t really work for me. Am I missing something?

    Like 0
    • rusty

      yes you are missing something…okie there is plenty of copy

      not sure how you could miss it but at least you made me look.

      Doug…looks good…good luck and I am glad you included a readers classified here.

      cheers from downunder.

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      • okiedude

        That wasn’t there yesterday when I looked?

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  34. Quinton B

    Did anyone get the email about this? I never did..

    Like 0
    • Jesse JesseStaff

      Our system only sends out emails when we first publish something, not when we do updates.

      Like 0
  35. Pete Loeffelbein

    What I recommend is to sell for enough to get what you really love. Are you watching the Last Man on Earth? He married what he assumed was the last woman on earth, not too attractive and definitely weird. Then he met the second to last woman on earth, Mrs Don Draper. It’s like that. Why invest in something that isn’t really what you want? Someone out there is dying to have this car. Make it safe and drive-able, i.e. reliably start, stop and license-able and like what someone else said, list it on a Facebook page or website that specializes in these cars. I had a 62 Mercury comet station wagon and that thing was a blast. Cheap, easy to work on, and very drive-able. My dad was into mustangs so we had spare ford parts, (plus he worked auto salvage). He found a new bench seat, great carpets and a full set of factory wire rim, spinner wheel covers. I had a lot good times in that car but I don’t want another one.

    Thanks for this forum.

    Like 0

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