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Old 02-24-2015, 10:37 AM   #1
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Default Buying a Torsen ... Dilemma

Ok so I have been talking with a guy who has a 3.9 Torsen swap (Well known member on here and on my local Miata FB page... not saying any names out of respect for his privacy) and we agreed on a price a couple weeks ago. After ironing out a few more details we ended up agreeing on him dropping it off at my business in NJ. He had plans to come to NJ from NC (where he now lives), because he had an old friend that was buying a bunch of stuff and he was delivering it up here anyway. I sent him a $300 deposit last week, and he was going to be coming last Friday 2/20 or today Tuesday 2/24. Well apparently life happened and some personal things came up, so he will not be coming up here this week. I will be calling him after work today to see if we can figure something out.

Here is where the dilemma comes into play. I found a totaled 01' like 20 minutes from me, 107K miles with a running motor, 6 speed, tan leather interior, 4.1 torsen, etc... Looks like an excellent parts car. I already spoke to the guy, and he told me he could take $1000 for it (Originally listed at $1500). Problem is, I really had my heart set on getting the 3.9 gearing to match the 6speed I already have in my car. The benefit of grabbing the parts car would be that I could sell off the remaining parts and essentially have a free torsen. OR I could keep some spare parts laying around in case I ever need anything and basically only paying an extra $250 over what I am paying this guy for the 3.9 swap ($750)...

What would you do?!?! I am in NO way of being concerned about getting boned by the guy with the 3.9. Everyone who I have ever talked to about him has had nothing but nice things to say. I really wish him the best and hope everything he has going on turns out Ok.
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:43 AM   #2
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3.9>4.1
That said, things change when you're comparing the 4.1 at half the cost or none of the cost.
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:56 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by 18psi View Post
3.9>4.1
That said, things change when you're comparing the 4.1 at half the cost or none of the cost.
The other option I was considering was to leave the deposit with this guy (Kinda risky depending on how long it lingers) And install the 4.1 for now... buy the 3.9 when this guy is ready and swap it into my already installed housing sometime down the road... sell the 4.1 swap
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:58 AM   #4
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Yeah, spend the money to be satisfied with your gearing. The more stuff I buy, the more I realize the slight (relative) monetary difference is worth it when you get what you really want. Buyer's remorse that you're reminded of every time you drive is not worth saving a few hundred.

Do you want the hassle of parting a car? Do you really need the spare parts or is it just a thought? I'd get that initial setup I want (you want) and install it with none of the other fuss.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:04 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by BTMiata View Post
The other option I was considering was to leave the deposit with this guy (Kinda risky depending on how long it lingers) And install the 4.1 for now... buy the 3.9 when this guy is ready and swap it into my already installed housing sometime down the road... sell the 4.1 swap
totally not worth that much work, unless you're bored and love doing a ton of work for very minimal differences.

I mean if you want to part an 01 and make some change that's cool, but if you're gonna swap the rear and want opinion on which one is better, the 3.9 wins every time
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:05 AM   #6
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I would buy both then sell the 4.1. At the price you're getting the 3.9 for, you could probably break even.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:45 AM   #7
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Yeah I know know... Like Vlad is saying, I really dont want to pull a car apart like that right now... Too much stress dealing with that BS. $750 is a fair price to have a 3.9 swap dropped off to me. Hopefully things work out for the best so we can still make this happen. It's not like I need the torsen this week or anything so I guess I dont mind waiting if it ends up being a few more weeks
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:50 AM   #8
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Gotcha. That is a good deal IMO. The best deal I've found on a 3.9 was $900 for the diff, housing, axles, driveshaft, and subframe, but I had to drive a few hours to get it.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:58 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Monk View Post
Gotcha. That is a good deal IMO. The best deal I've found on a 3.9 was $900 for the diff, housing, axles, driveshaft, and subframe, but I had to drive a few hours to get it.
Wow... Yeah I really really don't want to miss out on the 3.9 and I feel like the price is awesome, especially considering he is willing to drop it off to me.

Part of me really wanted to grab that parts car because I'd most likely end up on top $$-wise but the more I think about it, the more I dont want to deal with all the aggravation that comes along with parting out a car lol
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Old 02-24-2015, 01:17 PM   #10
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Really for a grand. Just buy that totalled car and pull the drivetrain, the seats, and any non bent suspension parts and scrap the rest and you'll double your money with like a weekend of work.
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Old 02-24-2015, 01:17 PM   #11
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An '01 may be a 4.3, 4.1 were on NA's. '01 Brochure shows 3.9 with 6-speed, 4.3 with 5-speed

Last edited by exexx; 02-24-2015 at 04:52 PM.
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Old 02-24-2015, 02:23 PM   #12
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If I was close by I'd be all over the wrecked NB for $1000 in a heart beat. Making money with a little work vs. spending money wins every time.
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Old 02-24-2015, 02:44 PM   #13
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It kills me that I found this totalled car now... In October I bought a 1.8 for $850...what a ripoff
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