Owning a Parts Car: Smarter Than I Thought

After the timing chain failed on our first Saab 900 at 198,000 miles, I stripped it down and sold quite a few parts on eBay. The parts that didn’t sell have been stored in our garage and basement for several years. Why save these parts? I thought it wise to save some of the parts for future needs. Come to find out, that was a pretty good idea.

Tonight I replaced the driver’s side seat belt buckle on our ’88 Turbo. That part was one that I had saved from the blue 900. The repair job wasn’t particularly difficult. (In fact, it was a lot easier than removing the seats out of the ’90.) Four bolts and an electrical plug and the seat was out. Three more bolts later and I had the center console lifted and the old buckle replaced.

After completing the job, I found a non-working part that I don’t have in stock. So, I visited www.thesaabsite.com to see how much it would cost. While I was looking, I came across the price for the belt buckle I had just replaced. How much do you think a new belt buckle would cost for a 1986-88 Saab 900? The convertible seat belt buckle for those years sells for $50. But for some odd reason this one would have cost me $250. Yikes!

A fellow stopped by the house this afternoon to offer me $75 for my ’90 parts car. He said he wanted to take it to the scrap yard. I took his number but told him I still had a few parts to pull off of it. After tonight’s experience, I think I’ll keep it a little while longer.

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