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Old 25-04-13, 18:50   #1
VSExe
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VL Advice

G'Day,

I am looking at selling my daily and buying a VL Calais. I am on P's and no way I can afford fines for defects etc. So anyways, I wanted to ask for any advise on anyones experiences with buying VL's. I notice one thing to look for it the rust between the bootlid and the rear window, but is there anything else? Will cops hassle me all the time even if its stock as f***? I also always see VL owners complaining about it being stolen, whats the deal with that? why are people stealing vl's even when they aren't worth much? is there anyway to prevent it getting stolen(other then garaging it...not an option)? and is there anything else i should just know, before going out looking for a nice 86 vl calais?

Also, how much should the rough price for a stockish 86 vl calais N/A be?

Thanks for any help!!

-Luke
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Old 25-04-13, 18:56   #2
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$2,500 probably if it's in good nick.

Never understood why they are easy steal targets but I guess they're still a quick get away car.

I remember mine got broken into in 12 years ago. Can't believe they are still being targeted.
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Old 25-04-13, 19:16   #3
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Seeing as you're in Vic, don't be surprised to see them for minimum 5k, unless you're lucky. Look for rust around the front windscreen as well because its quite common
Because its n/a you shouldn't get hassled, especially if you leave it on the stock mags
They're commonly stolen because they are still desirable (especially Calais') in good nick and there are a lot of scumbags who like to take people's pride and joy

Btw if you're looking to go down the turbo route in the future, probably hunt for an 87 or 88 model because they came with water and oil lines for the turbo already drilled into the block, early 86 ones didn't so it just saves a headache

Good luck with the hunt mate, hope you find a good example
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Old 25-04-13, 21:29   #4
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If it's stock looking and you don't drive like a **** you'll have no police problems, and depending on where you live kind decides on the risk of theft - I've never had any problems with people trying to touch mine but around here it's considered a POS to what most people drive. And if treated right they are cheap to run/reliable mine's never had any problems. Look out for rust anywhere, dodgy odometer, make sure it sounds healthy and not blowing a lot of smoke.
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Old 25-04-13, 23:09   #5
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I paid $4500 no reg or rwc but was in very good condition , respray, no rust etc. this is my 3rd vl calais and never been hassled. 2nd one was a 355 stroker and had no issues with cops, just be smart when you drive it
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Old 26-04-13, 10:47   #6
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I've got a gold vl calais I bought to clean up and sell but it still needs a bit more cleaned up before I'd be happy to sell it
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Old 26-04-13, 11:36   #7
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i had a red vlc on p plates in vic.

paid 2700 rwc and reg

got 2 defects (1 because i was out watching skids in an industrial area and the second because i was heavy footed in a concrete carpark and squeaked the tyres.... TMU were 1 row over parking so they could go buy pies upstairs no joke.)

I was pulled over pretty much weekly but it was the usual "where are you going, where have you been, pop the bonnet, off ya go"

being a young p plater recently out of home in a new town i was out and about late at night a lot so police will gravitate to you but i never got in any trouble except for the 2 defects and TBH i asked for it.

in terms of theft vl's were at the top of the most stolen list for the better part of a decade. they are easy to steal and parts are easily saleable. I've just wrecked a vl wagon an SL and I made over $1000 pure profit and I kept a lot of parts from it. Plus it didn't have rims, turbo, calais gear etc.

kill switches and a decent alarm are a must have. also be careful where and when you park it.

anyway they are a piece of $hit so you have to love them. get RACV, they'll break down, attract idiots, "thats so clean bro, is it for sale? my cousins been looking for one for years. is it turbo? my uncle's workmates life partner has one that did 10's at calder in the 90's fully stock" trust me soooo many goose's in the VL scene.

But they have tonnes of character. you really have to love them. under my DP picture is a box saying car. click the link it will take you to my car's thread from when i was like 18/19. it goes through everything from mods to police attention, break downs, vandalism but all the god stuff like cruises with mates and everything else aswell.
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Old 26-04-13, 12:02   #8
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Look for rust between seals, ask if the head gasket has ever been done, listen for a loud fuel pump, loud diff, look for a sus odometer, avoid really worn ignition barrels/locks, check the interior light position (suggesting a cut 'n shut).

Security: have a fuel pump kill switch installed ($60), store in a millitary facility.
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Old 26-04-13, 18:55   #9
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the ignition barrel are one of the weak links when it comes to vl's as they wear quickly(same with beamers)
iv got 2 kill switchs in mine 1 under each side of the dash
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Old 26-04-13, 19:18   #10
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you wont get defected if its stock looking

mine is clean as hell with just a LE front skirt, bobtail spoiler and grill and its factory height and 14 inch alloys aswell as mudflaps and stock exhaust

always display your p plates on the outside of the car if you in nsw, dont drive like a **** and make sure all your brake lights etc work

i have never been pulled over apart from being waved into RBT stations, and half the time they dont even wave me in
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Old 29-04-13, 09:06   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TUR30 View Post
the ignition barrel are one of the weak links when it comes to vl's as they wear quickly(same with beamers)
iv got 2 kill switchs in mine 1 under each side of the dash
Don't announce where your kill switches are lol..
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Old 29-04-13, 20:34   #12
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WOW, thanks for the reply everyone! After arguing with my old man for hours and hours, I may have to back out of buying one. He says they aren't safe enough as they don't have ABS or a driver side airbag. So unless either of those can be installed easily(cheapily) then i don't think Ill be able to buy one. Can someone define "killswitch"? I was under the impression that the killswitch was the red tab on the outside of the car i see on all the show cars making like 400 killa wasps ( )

I know this is the vl discusion area, but while I am here... Im think vs calais upgrade? whats people thoughts? It must have abs and an airbag though(and p legal)

Thanks guys!
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Old 29-04-13, 21:09   #13
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VLs aren't all too safe when you think about it, my parents weren't happy about the 80s spec safety when I got mine. It's really up to you if you want to take a risk with them or not, personally I like the feeling of being more in control and not having ABS. I don't think you'd be able to install airbags at least not in a way that'd make it worth bothering.

And a killswitch is a device that stops people being able to start your car without shutting it off, just a precaution for thieves. Usually just cuts out fuel or something so it wont run.
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Old 30-04-13, 10:36   #14
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I know safety is an issue, more so these days with most modern cars wrapped in cotton wool but you have to decide whether you want a sensible car that will save your life but blend you into the crowd - or an 80's Australian icon that is interesting, head turning and for the most part servicable.

A kill switch is a device spliced into a circut of your choice, generally ignition or fuel pump and when armed, will render the car inoperable. The idea of a kill switch is to hide it like the holy grail and tell no one.

A VS calais is fine in my oppinion, the VS introduced more safety features as well as the modernised ecotec engine over the VR's Buick engine which is generally more appealing in terms of reliability/economy/power from what I know, I might be wrong. A red over silver VS Calais with leather would be great!

PS: Vicroads states that some Supercharged variants are P plate legal provided you have submitted your application. It's very simple, I hold a permit - they approve them under no prejudice it seems. Check this out: http://www.vicroads.vic.gov.au/NR/ex...4AC2356E20.htm

Good luck

Last edited by Stock_87; 30-04-13 at 10:56.
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Old 30-04-13, 17:54   #15
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VS's are good also early VT's and vx's are bvecoming accesible.

The VS would be better value for money generally. the quality of build was excellent whereas early VT's are shocking. A VS Calais has airbags and ABS, IRS i believe even traction control on some late models?

Also check out some of the VS statesmans which are pretty cheap nowadays. some of the base model VS's still had live axle diffs and minimal safety features. They're a fine first car. I learned to drive in one and my first car was a TS Magna of the same age.

On that note check the $$ to features ratio of a KJ verada (magna)

under 6 grand -

cruise control / electronics / manual dhift auto box / ALL WHEEL DRIVE! / 125.000km
http://www.carsales.com.au/dealer/de...k&sort=default

same price with LEATHER and SUNROOF and awesoem km's
http://www.carsales.com.au/dealer/de...k&sort=default

these are an absolutely excellent car especially for the cost. try finding a VS calais with leather / roof and under 150,000km for 6g. they handle well, decent on fuel, more than enough power and theres a good forum for them with lots of support in tuning and audio (AMC = australian magna club)

This would be my first car if i had my time again.
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Old 28-05-13, 19:08   #16
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Okay, So what ended up happening...
My (now) ex-gf took all of my money out of my account after we broke up and now I am dead broke.... f**k me right?

So the new goal. Fix/clean up my vs and keep it as a daily. Then buy a vl as a project. Need some advise on this aswell... Im into drifting(as in i enjoy watching it, and would like to give it a go) more then burnouts, So no sure whether to go with 3lt turbo or injected 5ltr or do something different like a 185i from a vs clubby or something... what would be better for drifting? I don't want to much power and I would prefer to keep it more or less, as un-defective as i can. I know more questions come in to play after the engine/power is chosen, like drivetrain, tubbed etc etc. Not sure if it would be a track only car or just a defective street car... thoughts? is it worth sacraficing its roadworthiness to get more power, better looks and better drifts? just un sure in general

and yes, i will be getting the money back of my filthy wh*re of an ex gf, dw about that

cheers guys
-Luke
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Old 29-05-13, 18:27   #17
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What a bitch!! Just had to say that.

If I had the choice, I would buy a 180sx or cheap s14. Weld the diff and have fun on the track and ONLY use it for the track.
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Old 10-06-13, 17:07   #18
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re - VLs

Quote:
G'Day,

I am looking at selling my daily and buying a VL Calais. I am on P's and no way I can afford fines for defects etc. So anyways, I wanted to ask for any advise on anyones experiences with buying VL's. I notice one thing to look for it the rust between the bootlid and the rear window, but is there anything else? Will cops hassle me all the time even if its stock as f***? I also always see VL owners complaining about it being stolen, whats the deal with that? why are people stealing vl's even when they aren't worth much? is there anyway to prevent it getting stolen(other then garaging it...not an option)? and is there anything else i should just know, before going out looking for a nice 86 vl calais?

Also, how much should the rough price for a stockish 86 vl calais N/A be?

Thanks for any help!!

-Luke
Yeah, the main thing with them is to check for rust around the front & rear windows, also around the boot seal & inside the boot, also the high pressure pumps are known to fail on them when the fuel tank is run below 1/4, cause - a broken hose in the fuel tank from the return line barb to the swirl pot , a radiator place would be able to cut the tank open and fix this problem.

Head cracking was a major problem with the RB30 engine in the VL's, I have never experienced that in the VL's I've had, just make sure the coolant overflow bottle level is always maintained and that the cooling system is properly bled, NEVER check the water level at the radiator cap.

Yeah, I don't know who would be interested in stealing a VL Commodore these days, I mean, the later Commodores aren't immune to that ,they are just harder to steal, if anyone can retrieve a key code for a particular Commodore (i.e. VS onwards) , they can steal it, VL's are just easier to steal, I've had my first VL broken into in 2001 but no one has ever stolen it, I've had my VY SS Commodore broken into but no one has ever stolen it, maybe they only pinch a persons car if they're an asshole, I don't know !!!!

Yeah the cops do tend to hassle people driving a VL ,particularly P platers for some reason, I kept my second one as a sleeper so it never draw too much attention from the cops, even though the engine wore an R33 Skyline head and went like hell, just had the usual 16 inch mags, FE2 sports suspension and 2.5 inch cat back mandrel bent exhaust system (minus resonator) , 3 inch cat converter.

People noticed it sounded different to other VL's so they knew it wasn't a stock RB30,yeah, a bit different they thought, once I bought the VY the cops pretty much leave me alone apart from the occasional RBT.

Don't expect too much from a VL these days because they are a 25 - 27 year old car, the latest Holden Cruze will match it in performance and a stock V6 VE Commodore has more power than the VL Walkinshaw with the EFI 5 litre V8 in it.

That's the sort of question I've been asking myself, why would a cop pull over someone in a VL but not a Cruze or a VE Commodore?

You could probably pick a decent one of them VL's up for $1000 now.
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Old 11-06-13, 19:34   #19
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^Your for the tip.
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Old 11-06-13, 23:50   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RB30DEVL View Post

You could probably pick a decent one of them VL's up for $1000 now.
No chance in hell you can pick up a decent VL for a $1000. Good luck finding a half decent N/A one for under 4k
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Old 12-06-13, 14:19   #21
fleas
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Was gonna say the same thing.
It's No wonder that some tools ask for 2k on ebay or carsales for a POS.

- Also why semi-decent ones go for 5k and up, sometimes even more.
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Old 14-06-13, 05:49   #22
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Considering that your changing cars because of financial reasons, id opt against a VL and go for a far safer, more powerful and reliable commodore.

It will cost you less in the long run. Not saying you will buy a dud; car parts break down over time not just from every day use.

If you decide on a later model and your a few bucks short of getting something nice, just push home the safety issue to you dad might work.

your parents may be different to mine

I remember talking cars with my step dad LOL
I borrowed 3,200 for a calais, working 3 days a week at $280 a week
I had to sign a contractual agreement with my my step dad that consisted of:
A $100 establishment fee (Dont know why...id already established he's a %^&$)
have the money payed in full by a certain time (14 weeks to pay it off) or face being charged 20% interest on total amount
Plus general interest
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