Classic Cars CandL

All Photos in this post by Maurice Buonsanti

Building a quality classic car collection is a labor of love. People pour their time (and money) into it an expensive but fascinating hobby, in order to share their pride for restoring, maintaining and driving something special. To get the most out of classic car collecting, immerse yourself in the culture. Read industry magazines. Check out the latest news on classic car forums. Also, attend car shows, which are the perfect places to meet like-minded hobbyists who share your affinity for vintage vehicles.

Starting Your Collection

Take a measured approach to classic car collecting. Do plenty of research before plunging in, potentially buying a lemon. In the end, what matters most is that you follow your passion. Here are a few tips to help get you on your way:

  • Follow your heart. An emotional attachment to the cars you collect is a must. After all; you will be invsting valuable time and hard-earned money, so be sure you choose the cars you love, not just the ones that are most popular or likely to quickly appreciate.
  • Drive what you buy. While it’s certainly nice to have a garage filled with great rides, pursue cars that will actually get you out on the open road, if showing off your ride is one of your goals .
  • Be patient. Building a quality collection takes time. Talk to other owners before making your first purchase and do some research online.

Make the Most of Auto ShowsCarCollectingCovina

As you start your collection, attend a few car shows. These will help you understand classic cars and may even connect you with fellow hobbyists. These are the people you’ll come to depend on when it comes to determining fair price so you can negotiate or helping you find rare parts.

Southern California, where C&L Auto Body is located, is a top destination for classic car enthusiasts. Several sites offer monthly calendars of events offered throughout SoCal and the rest of the state. For example, in Pomona, California on August 14th is the “West Coast’s Largest Swap Meet,” which brings together more than 20,000 car enthusiasts. Attendees display their vehicles in the event’s “Car Corral” and also buy and sell thousands of different car parts and accessories.

If you have a “short list” of cars that interest you, find out whether those cars will be on display. Talk to owners who have cared for and maintained similar vehicles.

Understanding the Market

Serious car collectors understand market trends, especially as they pertain to certain makes and models.

Understanding the market means looking in unexpected places. Jay Leno increased his already massive collection when the City of Burbank Fire Department gave him a 1941 firetruck that only had 11,000 miles on it. Previously owned by Warner Bros., then donated it to the City of Burbank, the truck was in storage for decades before someone offered it to Leno. This type of unexpected find makes all of the researching and saving worthwhile. Jay Leno advises, “The trick is; you can’t be a snob. You’ve got to be open to the weird stuff that has an interesting story.”ClassicCarShowCovina

“Barn finds” are a legendary discovery in the car collecting world, referring to the discovery of a neglected classic that has sat untouched and unappreciated in a barn or other secured area for years. An extreme example of such a find is a classic Tucker 48 found in an Ohio outbuilding. Numbered Production #1044, the Tucker was in extremely good condition. The current value of the vehicle is somewhere in the neighborhood of a$3 million, which fuels the hopes of barn-storming car collectors everywhere.

The “go-to” location for auto body repair and classic restoration in the San Gabriel Valley, since 1970, C&L Auto Body is known for our attention to detail, courteous service, and fair and affordable prices. If you select C&L to repair your car, our concierge service will help make your entire auto body repair process easy on you. We will even help you make arrangements for a rental car and deal directly with your insurance company. C&L Auto Body is owned and operated by the Buonsanti family, who strives to treat clients like family. Come by the shop 781 E San Bernardino Road in Covina, contact us via email today, call (626) 445-6630 or visit