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Thread: Living the Dream - VIN 0628

  1. #1
    TNDMC Founder JBaker4981's Avatar
    Join Date:  May 2011

    Location:  Cookeville, TN

    Posts:    184

    My VIN:    628

    Club(s):   (SEDOC) (DCUK)

    Living the Dream - VIN 0628

    VIN 0628 is a March '81 build with an Automatic Transmission and Black Interior.

    Life Throughout the Years
    • Chestnut Fleet Rental, DE: (Aug '81- Unknown) The original owner of the car was Chestnut Fleet Rental, a vehicle rental company based in Delaware where it was used for a short time.
    • Thomas Crabtree, KY: (Unknown - Aug '86) The second owner had the car for a few years until he sold it to Carrol. There are only a few records of this owner in the documentation that I have.
    • Carrol Conrad, CT: (Aug '86 - Jan 2018 ) Carrol Conrad owned 0628 until his death in 2009. He purchased the car with somewhere in the vicinity of 10,200 miles on the odometer. He cared for the car greatly as he kept dozens of receipts and great maintenance records over the years. After his death, the car sat for many years until the family contacted Rob Grady and got it to his shop in NY where it sat for a while.
    • Tom Neiland, NY: (Jan '18 - June '19) Tom purchased the car from the family through Rob Grady in which the car was not running at the time. Tom spent the next 12-15 months restoring the car from the ground up and then posted it for sale on DMCTalk.org where I found the listing.


    A Little Bit about Me
    I'm 31 (at the time of writing) and am an IT Manager for a large Home Decor company. I live with my wife in Cookeville, TN and have been a DeLorean enthusiast since I was 5 or 6. At that time, I discovered the BTTF movies and fell in love with the fictitious looking Time Machine. When I was 7, my grandpa and I went to the old Walmart in Rivergate, TN where there was a Red DeLorean in the parking lot. Astonished by the fact that they existed, I was hooked. Later that year, my grandpa took me to a car museum in Nashville, TN to see a Batmobile replica and there was a '81 DeLorean with Black Interior and Manual Transmission. I was in love with the car going forward.

    As I started to grow, I joined the Entermyworld.com forums (now called DMCTalk these days) back in 2003 and started to meet and associate with owners and folks within the community. Went to DCS 2004 in Pigeon Forge, TN and to DCS 2006 in Chicago, IL and continued to meet the community and learn about the car. A few thousand posts later on the old forum and several tech sessions under my belt, I was in college and fell off the band wagon. Life Happens and the old forum crashed in 2011. I resurfaced, more social on Facebook Groups over the last few years and as I started my actual career in 2012, I started to get back into the community. Over the last couple of years, my desire to finally live the dream had become an actual goal of purchasing one in 2020.

    My Goal was a 1981 DeLorean with an Automatic Transmission and Grey Interior.

    Discovering the Car
    Tom posted VIN 0628 for sale in April 2019 on this forum and in this thread. In June, I was browsing the forum and came across the post for an Automatic with Black Interior. Reading the description, the massive list of everything that Tom had done to the car, and viewing the pictures 10x over, I felt that the car spoke to me. I saw his asking price and did the math.... shocked that I could afford it already. I thought, "It's not time yet" and I put the idea to rest. That idea of owning one and being able to afford it kept eating away at me for a week and I ended up discussing it with my wife. Fully supportive, she told me to just talk to the seller.

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    Tom and I discussed the car via PMs, texts, phone calls for nearly a week and a half. I was very intrigued and the thought of living the dream kept eating at me. My wife said "Do It". I thought that I had better wait. My mom of all people talked me into it. Her logic was simply this: If I don't purchase it now and enjoy it, then by the time we have kids and am in a position to buy one 10-20 years later, the cost would be far more significant due to the value appreciation. Her logic was sound IMO. We all know that in 2011, the $25,000 rule was still a thing. Less than 2 years later, the value jumped. Now cars like this are going for $40s - $50s on eBay. Ok, this is it.

    We arranged for Payment and officially purchased the car on June 26, 2019. A few days later, I had the car registered and insured in TN. At this point, I did not want to spend the $$$$ on transporting it down to TN so I decided to road trip it back home. Now to go get the car...

    DeLorean Day - July 4th, 2019
    My mom and I have done many road trips for her home business so naturally she wanted to go with. We boarded our flight from BNA to MDW on the morning of July 4th. Our connecting flight from MDW to ISP was delayed by several hours. Tom picked us up at the Airport in Long Island and took us to his house where they had a fantastic dinner waiting for us. Tom showed me around the car, all of the items that had been addressed, and many more. I was smiling from ear to ear the entire time that we were there. It didn't feel real.

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    Tom and his wife are absolutely the nicest of the nice. Along with everything that was included with the car, they provided us with a spare alternator, belts, oil filter, tool kit, fuses and bulbs, original radio, sheepskin seat covers, and money for the drive home. We couldn't believe it and I still cannot thank them enough for their generosity and kindness. Absolutely the best people!

    At around 9:30pm, we headed out with the car packed up to begin our journey home. Unfortunately, our Holiday Inn in Long Island didn't have the best AC and neither one of us could sleep so we decided to throw our bags back in the car and take off around 11:30pm to see if we could hit PA before we were tired. We set off and the car drove amazingly well. Sometime after we got into New Jersey, my mom mentioned that she felt something drip onto her ankle. Then water poured onto her feet. Crap, I bet the drain tube was clogged. NY doesn't have the humidity that we do in the South so naturally there was no reason for Tom to ever run the AC on Max - 4 for two hours straight. For this fat guy though, I always run AC but not anymore. AC off and it was smooth sailing. We found a Hotel sometime around 2am and crashed.
    2019-07-04 21.58.28.jpg

    Day 1 - July 5th, 2019
    Awake around 10am, I went out try to clear the clog in the drain tube. No luck, nothing was coming out of the tube all though I could see where water had traveled out of it. I looked at the lower evaporator case under the dash and could feel where it was wet but could not visually see a source. I checked the fluids, we packed up, and off we went. Along the way, the temperature gauge was getting pretty warm but not up to 220. There was a point in time that I did look down and it was sitting on 220 for I'm not sure how long, but at that point, we only had less than 5 miles to go before our stop for the evening. We met up with some fellow DeLorean friends, Christian Dietrich and Paul Shoremount, for a great dinner at Texas Roadhouse in Winchester, VA.

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    After a great dinner, Christian and Paul looked over 628 and suggested using 'Water Wetter' which supposedly lowers the temps by 20 degrees. Why not! I want to get this home safely. We let my car cool and went to a couple of Autozone places. I picked up some 50/50 and Water Wetter and Christian, being the great guy that he is, bought it. Thank you again! Paul invited me over to his house to service the car some. My mom and I found a hotel, got checked in, and I went over to Paul's. We found the source of the AC Condensation Leak - A V Shaped nick in the lower evaporator casing, possibly from heels or another type of pointed shoe. We patched it as best as we could and also added Water Wetter to the cooling system. After vaccuming as much of the water out as I could, Thankful for the great friends that I have already met on this trip, I departed back to the hotel.

    Day 2 - July 6th, 2019
    Up and Out by 10am, We ventured home. Unfortunately, our patch work on the evap case didnt solve our issue, it only made a solid stream of water. The engine temps were noticeably better, hovering around 180. Both of us were dead set on finding a Waffle House for lunch and around 2pm somewhere down I-81 in Virginia, we finally found one... but they were full with a line out the door. Taco Bell it is then. When ordering, I looked back at the car due to folks taking pictures and noticed a river of coolant running away from the car. S**t. I was internally in panic mode and went out to the car. After we ate lunch, I spoke to Tom on the phone about the possibilities and we decided to run up the road to Autozone which was not even 200 yards away. I couldn't get the coolant bottle cap off, it took an act of God for myself and an Autozone employee to twist it off. The bottle was about about 1/3rd full so I added more. I am fairly certain that this was self inflicted.... I didn't put the cap on the bottle but only half way the prior night and I am sure that air got into the system.

    2019-07-06 11.08.57.jpg

    We got back on the road with the windows down, still sweating like two fat kids but the car was driving great. Temps were operating around 180 and we cruised home. My only concern was going up a very large mountainous stretch of I-40 which is an uphill climb for about 4 miles around the Harriman/Rockwood area. I was expecting the worst but I was getting familiar with the car and understanding how she was operating. She took the mountain like a champ even though her temps crept towards 220, it never it 220. Victory. We made it home around 6:45pm that evening. Both of us were glad to walk into a freezing cold house and the wife was shocked at how low the car was. The car was finally home... The dream was home.

    Life After the Voyage Home
    Since having it home, I have already swapped out and replaced a few things with the car including but not limited to the following:
    • DPI Fans with Fan Shroud
    • Dave's Fan Relay
    • Dave's Fan Fail Unit
    • Fan Circuit Breaker (20A)
    • Blue LED Door Lights
    • Drain Tube (re-routed for better flow)
    • Completely Patched the Lower Evap Casing


    The car has never ran better or cooler. The cooling system upgrades that I have already done are a huge help especially with our humid and very hot weather in TN. The A/C gets used every time I drive the car with no more water in the passenger floorboard. Though some issues have came up since purchasing the car, 628 is an absolute dream.

    Going forward, I will be documenting 0628 in this thread such as upgrades, maintenance, events, etc.

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    Last edited by JBaker4981; 09-18-2019 at 05:40 PM.
    Jesse Baker
    VIN 628
    Black Interior, Automatic
    TNDMC: TN DeLorean Motor Club

  2. #2
    Senior Member Riley88's Avatar
    Join Date:  Oct 2014

    Location:  Virginia Beach, Virginia

    Posts:    467

    My VIN:    5312

    all great upgrades and what a great story man!
    - OCT81 DeLorean DMC-12 Vin 5312 "DeLores"
    - 1978 Lotus Esprit S2 "Problem Child"
    - 1995 Mazda Miata Turbo "Happy Daily Driver"

  3. #3
    TNDMC Founder JBaker4981's Avatar
    Join Date:  May 2011

    Location:  Cookeville, TN

    Posts:    184

    My VIN:    628

    Club(s):   (SEDOC) (DCUK)

    Having Fun with VIN 0628

    Over the last two months of ownership, I have been having a great time with VIN 628 AKA 'LoriAnn'. Here are just a few instances of the ventures that this car has already taken me on.

    Old Theatre
    During the first month, the car was stored at an off-site garage that I was renting space in Sparta, TN which I have only been to a hand full of times. Through the many attempts that were made to fully seal the lower evaporator case with JB Weld, caulk, and roofing materials, I came to know a few roads that I've never traveled and essentially dubbed it my 'test course'. My Best Friend had not had a ride in the D yet and he said he'd come with to try to seal the case, re-route a new drain tube, and we'd ride around. At this time, I had pulled the passenger side carpet due to the condensed water but he didn't care. He fell in love with the car as I had. Upon pulling off of my usual test course, we stumbled upon a beatiful theatre called the Oldham.
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    TN DMC Meet Up
    Right as I purchased the car, one of our fellow members on here started a thread regarding Nashville owners. This prompted me to start a Facebook Group called TN DeLorean Owners where I met a few of our members. At the time, I do not believe that none of us had actually met one another. One of our members owns a Drive-In in Middle TN and their annual 80's movie weekend was coming up. He decided to show BTTF on one of the screens and we all decided to meet up. A total of four DeLoreans were in attendance and was the most that city ever had at one time as well as the Theatre. I was such a great time and always a joy talking with our fellow owners. It was pretty great to draw such a large crowd as well!
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    Cookeville Cars and Coffee
    Vintage Planet of Cookeville, TN hosts a Cars and Coffee morning every now and then. I decided to attend since it was literally in my back yard. She sure knows how to draw attention by just sitting there.
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    General Use
    While I am not Daily Driving the D, I do drive it a couple of times a week either for an evening cruise, run a couple of errands, or commute to the office (once every other week). While I am still very wary on my temperatures, voltage, and oil pressure and still watch them like a hawk, the more I drive it, the more at ease I am about it. One of the below pictures is from cruising on a hot ass day with the car running very smoothly, the other picture is my wife in the car right after we just loaded the entire rear shelf of the car up with groceries
    IMG_20190804_131939.jpgLaura and 628.jpg
    Jesse Baker
    VIN 628
    Black Interior, Automatic
    TNDMC: TN DeLorean Motor Club

  4. #4
    TNDMC Founder JBaker4981's Avatar
    Join Date:  May 2011

    Location:  Cookeville, TN

    Posts:    184

    My VIN:    628

    Club(s):   (SEDOC) (DCUK)

    Quote Originally Posted by Riley88 View Post
    all great upgrades and what a great story man!
    Thanks man! I am planning on replacing all of the relays with Dave's and am in the process of changing out all of the bulbs in the car to LED plus much more on the project list.
    Jesse Baker
    VIN 628
    Black Interior, Automatic
    TNDMC: TN DeLorean Motor Club

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  Nov 2013

    Location:  NYS

    Posts:    2,495

    My VIN:    4519

    Great thread!

    I was watching the listing of this car and knew somebody would be very satisfied with the purchase, knowing Tom had gone through it.

    Congratulations!

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  May 2011

    Location:  Burnsville MN-Moving to Kalispell MT. in June 20111

    Posts:    877

    My VIN:    2691

    stories

    We need more stories like this!

  7. #7
    DMC Timeless's Avatar
    Join Date:  Nov 2016

    Location:  SW FL

    Posts:    323

    Club(s):   (DCF) (DCO) (DCUK)

    Quote Originally Posted by SS Spoiler View Post
    We need more stories like this!
    For sure. Theses are the stories that will pass on to the next generation of custodians of these cars.
    ~LXA~
    Dunmurry | Stuttgart | Leipzig | Tochigi | Fremont | Bratislava | Sindelfingen | Kansas City | Oakville | Coventry

  8. #8
    TNDMC Founder JBaker4981's Avatar
    Join Date:  May 2011

    Location:  Cookeville, TN

    Posts:    184

    My VIN:    628

    Club(s):   (SEDOC) (DCUK)

    Thanks so much guys! I will keep them coming
    Jesse Baker
    VIN 628
    Black Interior, Automatic
    TNDMC: TN DeLorean Motor Club

  9. #9
    Senior Member Domi's Avatar
    Join Date:  May 2011

    Location:  France

    Posts:    2,445

    My VIN:    16951

    Club(s):   (DCO) (DOA) (DCUK)

    Thanks for sharing your story with really cool pictures

  10. #10
    TNDMC Founder JBaker4981's Avatar
    Join Date:  May 2011

    Location:  Cookeville, TN

    Posts:    184

    My VIN:    628

    Club(s):   (SEDOC) (DCUK)

    Oil Change Plus Additional Extras

    Oil Change Day

    Date: 09/21/19
    Mileage: 36,878
    Oil Type: Castrol GTX 20W-50

    Today marks the first oil change of VIN 628 under my ownership. The goal was to swap the original drain plug with an EZ Oil Drain Valve from Toby Peterson up at DeLorean Parts NW and change the oil and oil filter. The EZ Oil Valve was the toughest part of the job as I could never get it to index the way that I wanted (with the release at the 12 O'Clock position). After learning from my mistakes of pouring fresh oil way to quickly, I was able to complete the job and run the engine for about 25 minutes to burn off the spilled oil that I could not clean up.

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    Air Filter
    While the engine was draining, I swapped the air filter which really needed it. I ordered an Air Filter from DMCH and I believe that I am going to test out that washable K&N Air Filter that I have seen many other owners use. Anyway, I was hoping that I could remove the top half of the airbox without disconnecting the air intake but alas, I discovered two hinges that I wouldn't be able to get to without taking the entire thing out. Swapped the air filter and I am sure that the car is able to breathe a whole lot better.

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    LED Interior Dome Lights
    My original front interior dome light was trashed - It had multiple cracks in the assembly between the positive and negative connections and it intermittently worked. I ordered a replacement Dome Light from DeLorean Go which is an updated version. The three connectors are all next to each other as opposed to the original having two on one side and one on the other. I ended up finding a picture of a different dome light being used from a VW but the connectors were the same so I decided to wire it up in the same manor. If we popped an LED due to connecting it wrong, so be it.

    2019-09-20 16.38.22.jpg2019-09-20 16.38.27.jpg2019-09-20 16.38.39.jpg2019-09-20 16.39.02.jpg

    I also focused on swapped the rear dome light to LED but I never could get the dome light out of the trim panel... I believe it was either glued in by a PO or the factory glued it in (another super-early VIN quirk). I dropped the cargo net hooks and then pulled down the rear panel of the shelf followed by the trim panel itself. From this angle, it was still not going to come out of the panel... definitely glued in. LED Swapped, tested, and everything replaced.

    2019-09-20 16.53.04-1.jpg
    Jesse Baker
    VIN 628
    Black Interior, Automatic
    TNDMC: TN DeLorean Motor Club

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