Buying first LC asking for community's help.. (1 Viewer)

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Nov 11, 2020
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Lynchburg, VA
I found a listing for a 40th Anniversary and I may pull plug on it just with prices being all over the place and me being such a newbie with LCs want to make sure I am making the best purchase possible.
I am trying to find a link to it, but its on Facebook which I can't access at work.. yeah ugh
anyway its a 97 40th with 233K on it. Just had new head gasket done. Looks great, I will need to get images of the underside

the bad: needs paint job on hood, rest looks good.
front seat doesn't work (bad motor?) how hard are they to source?
sway bar links need to be replaced
left ball joint needs to be checked (that is what seller told me)
asking $10,500 I really like it and looks good.. just want to know you guys' take on the info I have since you all know a lot more about them than I. Thank you in advance!
 
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If you really like it and it looks good then what's holding you back. In my opinion that is expensive. Another forum member might say that's a hell of a price. It's up to you to decide, it's your money.
 
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Well that is the thing, I am not sure if its a good price or not. To be honest I have been looking at RHD Diesels and they seem to be running close to $20k So this seemed low to me.. BUT I am not really sure what a fair price is for these in this condition. The same one could be $5k or $15k I can't wrap my head around it. I guess basically I was looking for if its a decent price, if I should be concerned about the issues it has, etc.
 
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Time is money. You can spend your entire life looking for the right cruiser or the "best deal" and not find it. I spent almost a year looking for mine when I finally pulled the trigger. It was not at the low end of the scale but it was rust free. I could have looked another year to save 500 to a 1000 bucks but why? I would not be enjoying the rig and continue to spend countless hours looking for one. SO, if it is in overall decent condition and it fits in your budget, buy it. Stop messing around looking for a better deal because, just like stocks, a better deal may never come along...
 
Joined
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Location
Lynchburg, VA
Time is money. You can spend your entire life looking for the right cruiser or the "best deal" and not find it. I spent almost a year looking for mine when I finally pulled the trigger. It was not at the low end of the scale but it was rust free. I could have looked another year to save 500 to a 1000 bucks but why? I would not be enjoying the rig and continue to spend countless hours looking for one. SO, if it is in overall decent condition and it fits in your budget, buy it. Stop messing around looking for a better deal because, just like stocks, a better deal may never come along...
You are absolutely right! I am bad about searching and searching and researching to death everything.. but when it comes to vehicles rarely pull the trigger. I know an LC is what I want.. and I assume from your reaction you see no red flags in the description I gave of the vehicle.. then i should probably jump on it and get to building what I want.
 

leonard_nemoy

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I found a listing for a 40th Anniversary and I may pull plug on it just with prices being all over the place and me being such a newbie with LCs want to make sure I am making the best purchase possible.
I am trying to find a link to it, but its on Facebook which I can't access at work.. yeah ugh
anyway its a 97 40th with 233K on it. Just had new head gasket done. Looks great, I will need to get images of the underside

the bad: needs paint job on hood, rest looks good.
front seat doesn't work (bad motor?) how hard are they to source?
sway bar links need to be replaced
left ball joint needs to be checked (that is what seller told me)
asking $10,500 I really like it and looks good.. just want to know you guys' take on the info I have since you all know a lot more about them than I. Thank you in advance!

I wouldn't believe anything the seller is telling you because 80 series do not have ball joints. The seller obviously doesn't know a thing about 80 series.

Does he have any proof that the head gasket was replaced by a reputable mechanic?
 

Comet

Knower of little, master of less.
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@leonard_nemoy hit the nail on the head regarding ball joints. Post up your location. Look at the clubhouse section and approach the one local to you for help. Eyes on the prize will make for a better experience. Head gasket is different than valve cover gasket. If the seller says the ball joint is bad, ask him how much blinker fluid it burns between changes? Truth be told, neither items are in use on an 80 series. Google Slee Offroad 80 Series Newbie Guide. Look up Otram (Ryan) on youtube. Jump in, the waters fine.

In addition, my ‘97 has 340,000 miles and is currently under the knife. I would not part with it for less then $12,500.
 
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Joined
Nov 11, 2020
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@leonard_nemoy hit the nail on the head regarding ball joints. Post up your location. Look at the clubhouse section and approach the one local to you for help. Eyes on the prize will make for a better experience. Head gasket is different than valve cover gasket. If the seller says the ball joint is bad, ask him how much blinker fluid it burns between changes? Truth be told, neither items are in use on an 80 series. Google Slee Offroad 80 Series Newbie Guide. Look up Otram (Ryan) on youtube. Jump in, the waters fine.
hmmm and he has a a ih8mud decal on the back.. Hes in NOVA, looks like he posted another 80 too so he should know something about them.. not giving me a lot of confidence now. I asked him about it not having ball joints (to clarify .. hopfully.. what hes talking about, maybe he means knuckle I don't know) and asked if it has service history. Seems like he has another for sale but looks a bit rusty.. good ARB bumper though
 
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hmmm and he has a a ih8mud decal on the back.. Hes in NOVA, looks like he posted another 80 too so he should know something about them.. not giving me a lot of confidence now. I asked him about it not having ball joints (to clarify .. hopfully.. what hes talking about, maybe he means knuckle I don't know) and asked if it has service history. Seems like he has another for sale but looks a bit rusty.. good ARB bumper though
Buy both for a reduced price and you have spares. Prices have gone up on 80's over the past year, especially the better examples, so the longer you wait, the more it will cost down the road to buy one.
 
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Indiana
If it's on FB Marketplace, you and 50 other people are probably thinking about buying it. The body looks good. It does have visible rust on the rear bumper. Interior has usual wear.

If it has had the head gasket done and he has the receipt, you should hurry and buy it before someone else does.

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If you need a good shop to check it out, contact Ironpig off-road in Fredericksburg. They may even have one or know of one for sale.
 
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An inspection for rust is essential. I shopped N. VA for a year or two and rust was common on the 80s I looked at. I'd expect more suspension bushings than just the sway bar(s) but you never know what may have been replaced already. I'd also expect some paint issues on the roof and other top surfaces but maybe it is just on the hood.

The seat problems are likely just the seat gears/caps if the problem with the seat is sliding forward/back on the rails. Tilt/etc. could be motors/etc.. If it's the gear caps you can get replacements here:


I vote to take your time and keep learning. Prices are rising but you should figure out what you want and what you may be getting yourself into before you make a commitment in my opinion. If you don't know about the seat issues and common fixes already, for instance, then you may not know other common issues/fixes with these. Also, is there a particular reason you were shopping for RHD diesels? I know they are novel/cool but that's a fairly different type of rig to be shopping than this 40th. I personally think a low/no rust ODB2 1FZ 80 is hard to beat if you live in the US. Buying a larger or secondary fuel tank if you need more range is probably less $/hassle than dealing with a RHD vehicle that was never available in our market. Adding a WitsEnd Turbo can resolve power shortcomings if you run into them. There are benefits/trade-offs with most setups though and each can make sense in the right situation.
 
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Nov 11, 2020
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Lynchburg, VA
If you need a good shop to check it out, contact Ironpig off-road in Fredericksburg. They may even have one or know of one for sale.
Thank you! Yeah I have heard a lot of good things about IronPig.. they are a bit from me and I have heard Independent4X4 in Ashland is good.. unfortunately still a drive for me.. nothing much here in nowhere VA.

Thank you @jpoole! I kinda figure most suspension components and bushings will need to be replaced.. As far as RHD Diesel.. I mainly wanted the diesel.. my buddy has a Diesel GWagon and I love it.. better MPGs maybe but other than that it was just the diesel. I have moved away from that some as the MPGs are not as significant as I originally thought nor is the availability of parts. I do a lot of trail riding and TAT Trail stuff, but nothing that I am ever too far from a gas station. Although I plan to go out west at some point so the range may come into question.
I had not come across the seat issue as of yet.. so yes that is new to me.. but I think I have read enough to know a lot of the problem areas or common maintenance issues in these.. that being said I learn best from having it and being hands on... but you do make a good point..
 

LandLocked93

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Also for consideration, how much more are you willing to spend on it once you have it?
$5k is a comfortable amount.
And that isn't for add-ons. You may not use all that on baselining.
But you might if you don't baseline, spend half on accessories, and need a tow truck in the middle of nowhere just twice.
 

desmocruiser

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It seems $10k is about the minimum price of admission these days for a decent high mileage 80, even more if locked and rust free.

As mentioned earlier, expect to add $5k or more (depending on how many threads you read) in the next few months taking care of a few things!

Good luck and enjoy! I really like the Sage 40th!
 

FMC80

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$5K? Ha. I blew through that even before my 80 was delivered :flipoff2:

I think 10.5 is relatively fair given the market. If it’s clean and rust free with a few bumps and bruises, I’d buy it and wouldn’t think twice.
Did you mention if it’s locked? That would also play a factor in this decision.
 
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$5k huh.. and that is just getting it back to baseline. Doesn't seem unreasonable and probably worth it to me for piece of mind. Cuts into build budget haha,

It is not locked which is one of the reasons I am on the fence.. if it was locked I would be more inclined to jump on it. I think its more the question of maintenece that has been done on it and price.. but seems to be a decent price for what it is. I am going to try to go look at it if I can get up to NOVA this weekend. Thanks for all the help everyone, definitely is appreciated!
 

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