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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Fellow owners,

First time I'm getting some work done on my new 1967 firebird. I'm new to the classic car club and wanted to see what you all though about this quote.

Attached the quote to my post.

Thanks.

Scott
 

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I'd say, do the work yourself and save 3 G's. Nothing there that an average person could not do. I believe your mechanic is saving to send his kids to Harvard or Yale.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm pretty good with my hands, but I don't know the first thing about working on car engines.

In all seriousness though, just looking to find out if this is fair or not. They told me those are "book" rates, but I assume it will end up less when all the work is done at once.
 

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WTF! They charge more labor to rebuild a carb than to replace an oil pan gasket? I call BS. Also, they charged full labor to do the water pump, and fuel pump...makes no sense since they had the whole front of the motor apart to do the timing chain cover gasket! RIP OFF!
 

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Guys, Scott just said he isn't mechanically inclined. Of course he could save the money by doing it himself, I'm sure he knows that.

All the prices for the parts look reasonable to me. I have a few problems with the labor on the quote. First, you can buy a newly rebuilt carb for what he's charging you to rebuild yours. Not saying you'd want to do that, I don't know anything about your car's condition and there's no reason to do that, but just sayin'. My guy charges around $150 for a rebuild, plus the kit. It takes him 2 hours tops to rebuild one, then call it another hour to adjust it on the car. The timing chain cover and water pump require some of the same disassembly and I think he's a bit unreasonable with that time as well. Also pretty steep on the oil pan gasket imo.

Overall I think he's charging you around 8 hours more than what I think is reasonable for this work as a whole. He's billing each individual job as it's own project, but a couple experienced guys should be able to knock all that out in a long day, easy. Say two guys, 10 hours each, 20 hours. Also his hourly rate is pretty steep compared to what I'm used to seeing. It might be the norm where you are in MD.

I don't know what your relationship is with this shop, if it's someone you trust to do the work right and stand behind it, you may think it's worth the premium price. I would recommend you ask around, find another well recommended shop in the area and get another quote.

Some of this though is just what you're going to run into when you're paying someone else to do the work for you and if wrenching on cars isn't your thing, then you gotta pay someone to do it for you.

Good luck, let us know how it turns out and get us some pics of the car!
 

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Actually about par for just going into a shop.I know some of us have all done this stuff but just think back what a PITA it is to replace a timing cover gasket!I personally would have just waited till the engine needed a rebuild or replacement.Working on a pan gasket in a first gen virtually means pulling the engine.I know some will say you can get them off but the diff from doing it in and out,I would just get the engine on a stand and get at every part with much more ease.JMHO,Tom
 

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while the parts pricing may vary from place to place they do not seem high.......

i do think you need to ask about the labor on the waterpump and fuelpump since they are pulling the chain cover of any way....

8 bolts on the WP and 2 on the FP is not very complicated so in my opinion they should shave that 400 off.
 

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I just Feel the labor is hi, if that a what people charge 150+ per hour I think I need to go back to mechanic work and open my own shop

Labor has apparently doubled since I was a Buick tech in the late 90's dealer charged $75 per hour then
The rate in the estimate he posted is $95 / hour. For the east cost, near Washington DC/Baltimore, that is probably not too far out of line. But 1.25 hours to change a t'stat looks excessive. That is something I would certainly do myself. Most of the labor hours seem at least 50% or more higher than they should be.
 

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I agree that it is pretty high... again the Thermostat housing was one that threw me too.... its two bolts and a little coolant mess, take you half hour tops with absolutely no experience.... in addition ditto the double dinging you on other labor charges... to get to timing chain the water pump will be off anyway... there should definitely be some consolidating there....

and don't expect them to do that after the fact... I would bet money on them not charging any less than quote..... You can but a good period correct carb already rebuilt for that kind of money...

the oil pan gasket is a pain, cause you probably have to lift motor to get it all... so that by itself would be about right... but it seems they are stacking everything instead of combining....

Get another opinion... get a shop manual... start looking at what you can do.... The motors are not super complicated.....

Good luck....
 

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Get on You Tube- most can be learned by following the video- Much you can do yourself- trust me. Ask around there are more good mechanics that charge a lot less than them- they have a lot of overhead to cover, plus they know you know nothing;-)
 

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I would think $3,500 could go a long way towards a BluePrint 430 HP 383 stroker. If you don't have a numbers matching car, look at crate engines from Summit Racing / Jegs / etc...
 
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