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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 07-19-2006, 05:15 AM
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Default Would you buy a Contemporary still?

I think I may have found a seller, and just wanted to know if there's really a problem with parts if something goes wrong with a used Contemporary. I know of Don Borders or Greg Lanier at Image Auto Works in Indio, CA. as a parts resource, but I'm not sure if they're still in business. I would imagine the drivetrane could be handled by my local competent Ford FE & tranny folks.... Just looking for the hidden downside thoughts.... Thanks,
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Old 07-19-2006, 05:22 AM
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Contemporary was one of the best kits on the market. I wouldn't have any qualms about buying a used one.

Jeff
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Old 07-19-2006, 05:44 AM
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I'll second what Jeff stated above. Contemporary, is a top notch cobra replica.


Bill S.
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Old 07-19-2006, 06:28 AM
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I bought John Macmahon's FIA Contemporary. Outstanding car. I was not too concerned with the fact that the company is not around. Afterall the parts that make the car run, steer, and get the power to the ground are available allo over. The quality of Contemporary is great and there detail to the originals is great. Good luck.

Stu
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Old 07-19-2006, 06:50 AM
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Contemporary was a great replica shop in their day. From what I have seen, it appears that quite a few examples in the North East were Chevy powered. You have to drive the car to see how it handles and having a knowledgable current Cobra owner along would be advisable. ERA and Contemporary duked it out in the early days... Nice body and fairly accurate round tube frame. All the suspension parts are Jaguar if memory serves. Inspect all the chasis and running gear underneath. Check the wiring for corrosion and function. The engine and trannie are safe bets for easy fixing or parts. Look the body over well for stress cracks and signs of neglect and abuse. If you are buying the car from a current owner, get a sense of how obsessive he is... the more the better IMHO. If you get alot of Duhhs and I dont knows.... then the owner is a driver and I would suspect the care of the care was entrusted to others. Check the brake fluid as a good and accurate marker for care.... dark = neglect.

If you look at my Bibliography and go to the magazines section and then have your browser (EDIT, find on this page) "contemporary" you will find most all the magazines that have reviewed or discussed that marke.

Since you are in GA, there are quite a few Cobra owners down there who I am sure can provide a knowledgable set of eyes for you. If one is or was a Contemporary owner then all the better.
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Last edited by REDSC400; 07-19-2006 at 10:14 AM..
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 07-19-2006, 06:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stush
I bought John Macmahon's FIA Contemporary. Outstanding car. I was not too concerned with the fact that the company is not around. Afterall the parts that make the car run, steer, and get the power to the ground are available allo over. The quality of Contemporary is great and there detail to the originals is great. Good luck.

Stu
Stu,

I'm glad that you're enjoying the car!


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Old 07-19-2006, 07:41 AM
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I live here in Atlanta and owned a Contemporary that I did a ton of work on. Feel free to call me to discuss if you would like - I'll pm you my phone numbers.
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Old 07-19-2006, 09:22 AM
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Cobra Make, Engine: -Sold- Contemporary 427S/C # CCX-3152 1966 427 Med Rise Side Oiler, 8v 3.54:1 Salisbury IRS, Koni's.. (Now I'm riding Harleys)
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Most Contemporary components were from known vehicles, Jag provided most of the suspension pieces. The nice thing is Jag made very few changes from 1960-1975 and many parts are interchangeable, many of the small parts were locally sourced from other vehicles very common to parts stores. My car was built 18 years ago and has 23,000 miles on it with no significant wear or parts failure. My ball joint boots (rubber) are tired and were easily obtained from a Jag parts source for $12. for the ball joint rebuild kit.

The rear end is Salisbury (Jaguar) but they used the Dana 44 pumpkin and are very common. Transmissions were almost always toploaders and are easily repaired or replaced. I've never seen a Contemporary with a chebbie engine but engines are any Ford or Chebbie small block or big block. Electrical parts are generally Lucas from original or aftermarket parts sources (same as AC, MG, Austin, etc).

I love my car and while I plan on an alloy bodied car I plan on keeping this one in some incarnation for a very long time. I'd buy another if I needed to replace it.
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Old 07-19-2006, 09:33 AM
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Some were more factory built that others, up to and including rollers. Check "home built" units for quality.

Later cars had a coil-over spring option for the front end. Early had torsion jag.

Well built car, loved mine.
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Old 07-19-2006, 09:36 AM
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Would I buy a Contemporary Still?

Only if it came from North Carolina...

  #11 (permalink)  
Old 07-19-2006, 01:35 PM
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I can't wait to get mine.... about twenty days or so. Just in time for October Cobra Rally down at Sebring in Florida. Hope to spend some time at performance driving school before that. I know they handle much different then BMW's with multi traction control.
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Old 07-19-2006, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neverwouldof
I can't wait to get mine.... about twenty days or so. Just in time for October Cobra Rally down at Sebring in Florida. Hope to spend some time at performance driving school before that. I know they handle much different then BMW's with multi traction control.
Keith,

So I can definitely mark that car as SOLD in the ad?

If so, congrats, I left a message for Fred but haven't heard back from him.

Just to let you guys know, Keith just bought the very last factory built Contemporary and probably one of the best. It has a monster 427 SO in it and Alcon brakes with lots of other top shelf goodies!
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Old 07-19-2006, 04:06 PM
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I like the looks of Ernie's pineapple juice still, but first back to the Contemporary question. I am the second owner of my machine and have done a fair amount of work on it over the past three years, so I have gained some knowledge on just how good a car it is. I initially purchased it because of its reputation of being well built and the detail work being close to the original. Being one of the last Contemporaries built, it had many improvements, including chassis stiffening and four wheel coil overs. After three months I broke the 390 FE motor, so it now sports a Shelby 427, large spline top loader and upgraded XKE suspension, including Watts linkage. While there are a number of good Cobra replicas out there, I am still pleased with my choice. If I would have had the bucks, I probably would have gone with a Kirkham. My next choice would've been an ERA, probably an FIA. But every time I fire up my beast, I still get that special thrill! Rich
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Old 07-19-2006, 05:09 PM
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Buy the CCX,

Contemporary driveline parts are via Jaguar, my power is Ford, and body is accurate enough to buy accessories from ERA, Cobra Restorers, etc...... I have yet to be in a bind without direction. Worse case the cars are so simple you can just update. Second, this sight is a resource for any problem you might face.

FYI, my Ford dealer will not touch the car. Like an old Harley, it is due to Toploader and Cleveland. No doubt FE's will be similar issue. Just find a good Ford rodder, Jaguar restorer, or reference specialty places like David Kee and FE Specialists. If you bought a 1960's car you would have the same issues.

I would like to put together an owners resource guide for Contemporay Classic guys. Wouldn't it be nice to have owner names, email, phone numbers, and details of cars in binder form? If you think so, please PM me information and I will begin the task. May take some time but it might be fun for all of us.

Best of luck on your CCX quest!
Jeff
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Old 07-19-2006, 06:23 PM
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