Region: NWR/Oregon; ICSCC
Car #: 70
Year : 1991 Posts: 1111
I will offer the counter advice from my colleague in Atlanta. There are benefits, and detriments, either way, whether you build or buy. If you build, you can make it exactly as you want it; it will fit you, and have the things you consider important. If you do the build, you will know your car very, very well, and you can decide exactly what you think should be replaced with new parts and what parts don't need replacing.
If you buy someone else's car, you will get a car ready to go (presumably...), for a price that should be considerably less than the cost of building your own. But you also will be buying a car with unknown problems, which has been raced hard, and might have been put away wet on more than one occasion. You probably will spend a good deal of money over the first couple of years of ownership replacing worn out parts (I certainly have).
I firmly believe that, if you're in this for the long haul, there is not a large difference, over time, in the cost of buying vs. building. There are other tradeoffs, but long-term cost isn't one of them, IMO.
I am perfectly happy with having purchased another racer's used car, since he's a good guy and the car was ready to race immediately. My son is perfectly happy with having built his own.
Car #: 87
Year : 1991 Posts: 520
My son and I built his car. It was a great experience. We both learned a ton about the car. Three to four years ago the build cost us less than $10K including $3K for the donor/hardtop - and he finished top ten in points in WDC Region that first year.
It can be done.
Go for it.
BTW, we're from Cherry Hill. Any help or questions just ask.