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They don’t build them like they used to.

Kern Dog

Life is full of turns. Build your car to handle.
FBBO Gold Member
Local time
5:10 AM
Apr 13, 2012
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Granite Bay CA
We have all heard people say this.
That phrase is most often spoken to describe how new things are of lesser quality compared to old stuff.
In the case of cars, yeah… they certainly do NOT build them like they used to.
Newer cars are really complicated and it seems that service isn’t even considered when they are built. Spark plug and oil filter access can be difficult. Starters and alternators buried so deep, you have to pull the engine to get to them.
New cars have a tremendous amount of plastic, wiring and sound deadening material.
As a favor, I scrapped this:


2007 Saturn Outlook AWD. Zero resale value. Lost title and it hasn’t ran in 8 years. Check out the amount of non recyclable interior stuff.



Seats, carpet, door panels, headliner…
It is believed that you can cut a car in quarters and bring it in to the recycler.
The places up here state that the pieces have to be small enough to “not resemble a car”. They have said this more than once so I suspect that it is verbatim from some regulation.
Sometimes the scrap yard has an operational magnet, sometimes it isn’t working or is otherwise busy so that means hand unloading.
That means the pieces have to be small enough to lift by myself…


Sawzall time!

They still take about anything around here.
My son packs derby cars with anything and gets "tin price" for the carcass.
This will be fun. Those and their Chevy and GMC cousins weren't bad vehicles. That have the straight 6? They ran forever with very few warranty issues I understand. There were transmission issues. 4L60E if I remember. Something any transmission shop could fix and update the weak original parts.
I bought 15 blades and used every one.
A little story on that: the stores keep Sawzall blades locked up now. The clerk has to open the cage. I didn’t see the blades I usually get. These were Milwaukee brand but the teeth per inch was too high. They dulled out too quick and cut slow.


I needed more aggressive blades like the ones made by Diablo.
I worked my way through though.


I pressed on..

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This works WAY faster and the leftover pieces don't resemble anything. Cleanup can be a bitch.

Different rules for each State. No title meant that it had to be cut up to get any money from it. The prior owner is recently widowed so I’m just helping her out. The local junkyards didn’t see any parts value for the seats or drivetrain. Dual overhead cam V6. It developed some electrical issue where it would randomly shut off and not restart. The owner took it to several dealers that couldn’t duplicate or fix the problem.
About the time I was at this point:

She found the title.
By now, I figured that I might as well follow through.
I pushed it indoors to finish.

A lot of the car just unbolted. Nothing was rusty so a lot of it just came apart.

The V6 is aluminum so I’ll tear it down. Aluminum is about ten times the value of steel and iron.
Lots to sort through here… aluminum and wiring.


With the title, I can get full value for these.


Cutting up a classic Mopar is easy work compared to this tank. This was also unibody but the frame rails were much thicker. There were multiple crossmembers. The thing weighed almost 5000 lbs According to some online sources.
I told the wife that I should have just worked a part time job and donated the money to this woman instead of spending the time to cut it up.
It is loaded for the first trip. All steel this time, next trip will be the converters, aluminum and wiring.
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The “ They don’t make them like they used to” applies here. Look at the thickness of the boxed rockers.


There is foam injected in some areas.


Must be for sound?

This one will be easy:


I mean, look at how thick the rails are here.

So, the 64 dollar question is…..

How much time was invested and what did you get for it all?
Too much time!
The owner lost her husband so I offered to get rid of this thing and get her as much as I could. I’m not getting anything. I’m giving her all the money.
It could add up to $1000.
It developed some electrical issue where it would randomly shut off and not restart. The owner took it to several dealers that couldn’t duplicate or fix the problem.

They don't treat the elderly properly.
They hate to work on older vehicles.
They only want to sell their new stuff.
The engine is half under the windshield. One head is fully buried. I don’t know how you’d change the spark plugs in this thing.
I would be saving some of that rust free steel for future fabrication needs.
I just spent over $450 for 2 small sheets and a couple 2" angle lengths. More than double what it was 2 years ago.
Send me one of those comfy bucket seats. The one on my tractor is about to snap in half
(fake Chinese John Deere looking thing that it is...). :)

Serously, it appears you have a little time on your hands - and an abundance of energy.
We need to learn how to use such powers for the good of Mopars, not sludgebucket Saturns. :thumbsup:
Around here they cube them,put the cubes in the shreader and the machine sorts it all out,start to finish, done in fifteen minutes.
The “ They don’t make them like they used to” applies here. Look at the thickness of the boxed rockers.

View attachment 1445003View attachment 1445002

There is foam injected in some areas.

View attachment 1445004
Must be for sound?
View attachment 1445010

This one will be easy:

View attachment 1445011

I mean, look at how thick the rails are here.

View attachment 1445012
The foam injected into frame rails isn't just for sound, it improves strength and torsional rigidity substantially, sometimes up to 300%. This isn't the light stuff you spray in your walls to seal up cracks, it's a heavy high density foam.
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