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Low miles, one owner 67 BGT [NC, USA]

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stuntflyr Avatar
stuntflyr Chris McMillin
Catalina, Foothills, USA   USA
I don't get it. But, my wife always says, people act this way because there is so little at stake!

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lbcnut Avatar
lbcnut James Woolf
Grass Valley, CA, USA   USA
1964 MG MGB
1967 MG MGB GT "Grampers"
Hold on guys, Mike was not aware until this morning about any of this. There are always multiple sides to a story and I certainly am not entitled to the car no matter how much I tried or care about it. I don't think Mike had any ill intent here. I don't understand what transpired but so it goes. I will admit it is tough thinking its "available" only to have it snatched away again within hours, but if you're willing to take a couple minutes out of your life to read my sob story, you'll see that has been this car's curse on me for quite a long time. Yes, I am pissed about how this played out, but it is just a car after all. Just for those that will say money talks and bullshit walks, when my dad talked to the owner today it was already sold and I was not offered a chance to make an offer, so it's not like that...

Here's a little backstory on it for you guys, just to show how ridiculous we can get over piles of metal on wheels that don't even run...

When I was 13 or 14 my dad picked me up from Boy Scout camp and tossed a "Practical Classics" magazine at me that had some how-to article on BGTs, and with a smirk told me I should read it because I might need to know about fixing one up. As we drove home I found out that while he was driving our old rattletrap Magnette around, a guy in the neighborhood stopped to talk about MGs, and mentioned he had one at home, would my dad like to come look at it? So my dad goes over and finds this car. This is back in 2003-2004 or so. It's all original, one owner, been sitting in a garage for 10 years at that point, and the owner is "thinking of downsizing" and finding a new home for the car. I made several visits, he was never willing to name a price or seriously talk of letting the car go, but we stayed in touch.

Fast forward a year or two, I'm 16, have a job, have saved some money, and have stayed in touch with the owner. He lives right in my neighborhood less than a mile away and I ride my bike by his house and stop to chat occasionally. This is 2006 or so, and back then it was nuts to pay more than $1000 for a non running MGB, but even then I knew this one was special, so I put $2000 in cash down on his basement coffee table, what I felt was a very strong offer at the time, and he said he wanted to sell the car, but he was still just too attached to it.

A year or two later I bought a nice solid, presentable, running and driving OEW 67 GT from Bob White/"joemamma" for $3000 (I only mention this price because I think it puts my original offer in perspective, prices are obviously different now over a decade later). I still have that car to this day. I spent all summer working like a madman on that rig when I should have been researching sex, drugs, and rock'n'roll like any normal level headed teenager. Hindsight is 20/20.. I digress, but when I was done, since it was almost a twin to this car, I drove over to the owner's house and took him out for a ride in it, hoping to convince him I was worthy.... The owner and his wife would even come eat at the restaurant I worked at in high school occasionally, and we always talked about the car.

Still, the car was not for sale, but he was "thinking about downsizing" soon. I offered over the years to get the car running, but it was always poor timing for him. He also at the time wanted to paint the car, which in my mind is pretty much a criminal act to an original paint car, so maybe it is a blessing in disguise that we never got it going, because its stayed as it is.

Once I went off to college I continued to visit him on Christmas breaks, up until about 2 years ago when I moved to California full time, but even then, my dad and mom would keep in touch when they saw him in the neighborhood.

Way back when I was 16 and had made my cash offer, I asked him in front of his wife if he would at least give me first right of refusal to the car when he was ready. They both readily agreed, and I always made sure to renew that agreement over the years. He always agreed but there was always some hesitation. I was told I was "too young to appreciate it", or I "didn't have a garage to keep the car safe", or that I "probably couldn't afford it because I was fresh out of college".

The last time I talked to him in person he told me that Jeff Lane of the Lane Motor Museum had told him that it was worth 10k even though he hadn't seen pictures of it. I tried to politely explain that 10k was a little optimistic, but hey, what do I know, I'm just a kid. The fact that I was a kid who judged NAMGBR concours, grew up reading Clausager's Original MGB at night under the covers, and had owned somewhere around 60-70 MGs by that time didn't seem to matter to him. Do I sound bitter yet? Oops...

Honestly I felt that he was just very attached to a the car, understandably so, and that he would most likely never let it go, but always have kept it in the back of my mind that surely one day I would get the call... Time has taken its toll on the car significantly over the years. When I first saw it there was no surface rust on it... It has not moved out of that garage in at least 24 or 25 years, the flat tire has always been flat, the doglegs had started to do the typical bubbling when I last saw it, and the paint has worn away even more.

Anyways this is getting too long, but writing this has helped because I did have a weird attachment to this car, and am super bummed not to have even had a chance at it. I mean, it's not often you get to find a car like this literally a mile from home and it stays there hibernating as you grow up.

When I saw the ad posted here last night I almost crapped myself. I thought no f@#&ing way. I am disappointed that the owner didn't keep his word, but it is his car, and his choice to make. I think he will always see me as a "kid" that is not responsible enough for the car and that is not my problem. Maybe I should cut my hair so I don't look like such a damn hippie though....

I'm lucky to have some cool cars and there are always others out there but I'm sure you guys can understand how this particular rig will always be "the one that got away"...

I hope Mike has a lot of fun with it and I've already told him to let me know when he's ready to get rid of it. I've waited 14 years, another decade won't kill me...

P.S. Mike, if what I heard numbers wise is true, please let Peter know that silly long haired kid would have given him more... moon

wyatt Avatar
wyatt Silver Member Wyatt W
penguin point, drift ice, Antarctica   ATA
...ok James, thanks for the explanation and sorry you didn't get it, but if I am reading this right none of us had really a chance at it...been there done that with a nice piece of rural property years ago,made an offer, full price on it but the realtor who listed it and I I made the offer thru bought it instead... confused smiley

as a side note, on the TRexperience a similar senario has played out, a TR guy listed a 58 TR3 for an old fella(76) who can't drive it anymore for medical reasons.The lister explained how it was a 2 owner from new and all ways a S Cal/Az car all its life and basically original,and he was the mechanic of record, he suggested a price or BO, plenty fair....several guys expressed interest,damn straight they did as I did too. Well I made my offer and it was accepted without any brew ha ha back and forth or BS wrangling from others with better offers. The deal was done fair and square and the lister did not try to play games with me or anybody else, nor did he try to buy it out from under me.....
So any ways James, when you grow up,cut yer hair and realizes Triumph TR3s rule and are the name of the game, maybe we'll talk...smoking smiley

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wrightgcbuilder Avatar
wrightgcbuilder Dan Wright
North Platte, NE, USA   USA
Always two sides to the story, but this just doesn't make it any better. I feel for you James.

jewar Avatar
jewar Silver Member John Warlimont
Abbotsford, BC, Canada   CAN
Thanks for the background, probably most of us have had the same thing happen to us. Back in the day, lost a couple. I am sure that when Mike posted he had no intention of buying the car for himself.


wyatt Avatar
wyatt Silver Member Wyatt W
penguin point, drift ice, Antarctica   ATA
...seems that he did

"Again, I am selling this on my neighbor's behalf. I would snap it up myself if I had the space and time to dedicate to this intact survivor - hell, I might pull the trigger if none of you knuckle heads can give him a fair price! grinning smiley

PM me if you have any questions... I will try to answer to the best of my ability.

Serious offers will be relayed by me to the owner ASAP."

he gave the ad two days, not much time to get the best price (a fair price) for a car is it...2 days??eye popping smiley

what ever..??? I'm out.

Benny Avatar
Benny Ben E
San Diego, CA, USA   USA
This hobby teaches you a lot about human nature. In the last 10 years, I’ve been promised “first dibs” on two exceptional Cortinas by aquaintances, only to have them quietly sold out from under me without a word.

A car that’s on BaT right now is being sold by someone who I’ve considered a friend for the last 4 years. I was told just last month that the car would “never be sold”, and was under the distinct impression that I would be the first to know if that changed....but then it popped up on BaT without a word. Now I’ll have to bid against every other swinging dick if I want to own the car. My “friend” might make an extra $5k (he’s wealthy to begin with) but his pride and joy might now go overseas instead of across town, or may even go to someone who beats the sh*t out of it.

People are funny....

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2019-02-09 03:05 PM by Benny.

AzMarc Avatar
AzMarc Platinum Member Marc F.
Phoenix, AZ, USA   USA
1963 MG MGB "Fixty Three"
1980 MG MGB
Wow what a story. I do believe that someday James will get the car.....

Walk on air against your better judgement - Seamus Heaney

Check out

SpitfireJim Avatar
SpitfireJim Jim F
Telford, PA, USA   USA
The car hobby has trumps all and cars are now collectibles...

Feel bad for you James...but you handled it well.

Even ten years ago I felt much more loyalty and comraderie in this hobby. Look at how many cars on BAT are ‘recently acquired’ After prior long term ownership
I often wonder how many owners sell a cherished car under the impression it’s going to its next great home...only to be sold on bat a few months later for a tidy profit

miatadon Avatar
miatadon Silver Member Don Scott
Calistoga, CA, USA   USA
I sympathize with you, James. I have fallen in love with a few cars, ones that were just what I wanted, me ready to buy, only to hesitate a bit, usually due to personal issues (wife's health) that prevented me from acting quickly enough. And poof, the car or cars are gone, sold to someone else. Such "lost cars" are ones that I would be unlikely to ever find again in that condition at that price. But in these situations, it's my own circumstances that cost me the purchase, rather than a seller's actions.

GILMGA Silver Member Gil Dupre
1962 MG MGA
1974 MG MGB GT
Probably Mike will flip it to James I hope.


GeorgeOhr Nonya Business
Yes, confused, USA   USA
James, you are much more of a gentleman on your worse day than I am on my best.

Kuddos to you my friend; karma will makes things right. Rest assured; all here have taken notice of your integrity.

That’s being said, I will offer food for thought for Mike’s actions.

Perhaps he just came to his senses? He didn’t know about James. Maybe the PO forgot about James (he is old) or maybe he still looks as him as a kid. The PO seems to have pulled the rug out more than Mike.

That being said; I believe that when Mike decides to part with it, he should be as much of a gentleman as James has shown to be in this thread.

I can’t think of a better “new” caretaker than James once Mike decides to move on....whenever that should be. I also believe Mike needs to leave a letter with the title that has James’ contact info and instruction to contact James should something happen Mike and it’s time for the car to go to a new home.


I can’t even begin to express how impressed I am with you!

(And I’m VERY stingy with compliments..)

winking smiley

tampaguy Avatar
tampaguy Jack Shea
Elgin, OR, USA   USA
I first laid eyes on this 67 GT Special in 1973. I asked the owner if it was for sale ?, he replied “No but you can have first shot when I do decide to offer it up !”. Finally brought it home in 2014. Patience pays off.

047ECD3E-63EC-4315-9DAC-2CB780F98383.jpeg    44.1 KB

Triumphant66 Avatar
Triumphant66 Kent C
Richmond, VA, USA   USA
1956 Austin-Healey 100M "ParisieM"
1963 MG MGB
1964 MG MGB "Nanette"
1966 Austin-Healey 3000 BJ8    & more
I'm with Wyatt on this one!
And I've met James. He would hav been the ideal next caretaker.

Sad ending.


My first LBC: 1969 MGB purchased in July 1977 in Richmond, VA somewhere in the Fan District. OO get in touch?.

mhubbard Avatar
mhubbard Mike Hubbard
Charlotte, NC, USA   USA
Hey fellas. Wow, this thread really grew legs! First off, I never meant to mislead anyone. Thank you, James, for adding some sense of balance and perspective to the tone this thread was taking. My intention was to help the owner find a broader audience for this splendid - but neglected - car. At the time of my posting, I was unaware of any past promises or commitments made by the owner and everything I wrote was as true to the letter as I knew it to be.

All this chatter about trolling and karma is ridiculous. If you (with the exception of James) feel you deserve an “explanation” - you’re mistaken. All you need to know is that I was marketing this as a kind gesture to find this car good home... and in the course of the events that followed, the owner made me a deal I simply couldn’t refuse. Sorry, but I won’t go into more detail than that here as my parents always said it was impolite to talk about money.

Again, James, thanks for adding balance to all of this. I’m sorry if you felt jerked around any. Feel free to reach out to me any time.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2019-02-10 03:49 PM by mhubbard.

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