Howdy cats, so my kinda weird but cool hermit-y lady neighbor has a late-model convertible bug that’s been under a torn tarp being overgrown by Japanese maples. I’ve been curious about the car but not enough to ask her about it - besides I hardly ever see her out even if I wanted to. Last night my wife tells me she is calling St. Vincent de Paul to come haul it away. This obviously peaked my interest. A late model bug isn’t exactly the project I was looking for but for the right price ...

Anyway, we go knocking on her door asking to see it. My guess just seeing the exposed few bits and general shape was mid-’70s. She said it was a ‘78. Strike one for a CA project car. I would not want to deal with a car that required smog passage. As I started to crawl around and expose the panels, I noticed theree is mild surface rust but no holes on any external panel. When she parked it (it had “engine troubles”), someone had cut the top and over the years since the failing tarp let in all the rainwater San Diego manages and the rear of the floorpans on both sides have rusted through. Strike two but not a deal-breaker since replacements are cheap and I need to brush up on my metal working skills, anyway.

Now to the price. I’m pretty sure I can pick this thing up for $500 but, the question is, should I? The rust remediation and restoration needed are not the troubling bits, it’s dealing with getting it to pass smog and having to keep it stock so it can continue to do so.

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What do y’all think? Run away? Dive in?