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Old 01-15-2021, 06:12 PM   #1
dakota1820
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Default S series are getting harder and harder to find

I've been looking for a relatively clean manual s series and wow it's gotten extremely difficult to find them. Didn't used to be this hard. But even in the last couple of years it's become a major challenge I'm probably not telling anyone anything they don't already know but man it's getting tough.
Do you still see s series in your area? We see some around here every now and again they're either automatics or beat to hell it seems like. 😥
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Old 01-15-2021, 07:20 PM   #2
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

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Originally Posted by dakota1820 View Post
I've been looking for a relatively clean manual s series and wow it's gotten extremely difficult to find them. Didn't used to be this hard. But even in the last couple of years it's become a major challenge I'm probably not telling anyone anything they don't already know but man it's getting tough.
Do you still see s series in your area? We see some around here every now and again they're either automatics or beat to hell it seems like. 😥
I've got a local auction house that seems to like to bring them in from Copart. They are usually pretty beat, but sometimes they get some that look like they may be decent-ish. So many of them are the wrong combo for me, or need brake work and look like a raccoon has been living in it.

After completely doing the brakes on my SL2 last year, I have no desire to do more Saturn brake work, especially this time of year (in the driveway).

As it is, I am going to have to check my pads, as I have recently noticed I'm hearing the squealers touch, or the stainless slides/brackets rub. It really shouldn't be the wear indicators this soon, but maybe my pads were made out of semi-metallic Play-Doh.
...
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Old 01-15-2021, 07:27 PM   #3
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

I feel your pain I have a garage but it's not heated. Working on anything this time of year is miserable. I bought a 05 focus st recently always liked them but it need front struts and what not because the coils were broken along with a new Intake manifold. Sitting on the cold concrete doing the work was not very enjoyable.
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Old 01-16-2021, 12:46 PM   #4
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

Yup. They are getting thin in these parts...




Wonder why?

...
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Old 01-16-2021, 12:49 PM   #5
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

Quote:
Originally Posted by dakota1820 View Post
I feel your pain I have a garage but it's not heated. Working on anything this time of year is miserable. I bought a 05 focus st recently always liked them but it need front struts and what not because the coils were broken along with a new Intake manifold. Sitting on the cold concrete doing the work was not very enjoyable.
Time to invest in insulation and a woodburner...

..

My garage is so well insulated I can go three days without a fire and don't have to worry about the water pipes freezing - providing it doesnt get sub zero (f) out....
...
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Old 01-16-2021, 03:18 PM   #6
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

The first owner usually takes care of their car.
The second owner is a wildcard, based on their values, upbringing and I.Q.
By the time you get to the 3rd owner, they are stomping their cigarettes out on the carpet and ignoring oil changes.

The best we can hope for is finding a car that was owned by our elders, who passed things down to us with an understanding that we would treat them like an adult would treat them. We either do, or we snicker at the steal we got and proceed to call the car old crap and then immediately start to neglect it
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Old 01-16-2021, 05:35 PM   #7
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

I actually do plan on finishing the garage and insulating it we just moved a couple months ago. Got the opportunity to buy my grandparent's old house and I took it.

Yea most saturns I see are either automatics and are clean or or beat to death. A clean stick is getting to be like a unicorn where I am.
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Old 01-17-2021, 12:20 AM   #8
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

Crazy question but I am asking it. I've never owned an auto saturn. I always try to buy stick shift everything however atleast where I am stick shift saturn's are getting so hard to find. I however have found a couple clean saturn's that are automatics. Am I stupid to pass these up simply for purist reasons or should I stick to my guns and wait until one pops up?
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Old 01-17-2021, 01:14 AM   #9
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

You can wait or use autotempest to see how far you're willing to drive. A 300 mile radius (about a day's drive round trip) shows 4 older Saturn's in your area with a manual trans.

So few people know how to drive a manual, they usually don't get snatched up too fast unless it's a rarer sports car that attracts enthusiasts.

https://www.autotempest.com/results?...ansmission=man
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Old 01-17-2021, 01:19 AM   #10
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

Yeah I've been using it. So only one of them is actually a possibility 2 aren't available one was actually an automatic if I recall correctly. I've searched within 500 miles and have came up empty. Around here the minute one goes for sale if it's decent it's going quick even being a stick. It's kind of crazy because it's backwards ass of what logic would be. You'd think the autos would sell quick and the sticks would sit a little bit but that doesn't seem to be the case 🤷
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Old 01-17-2021, 06:00 AM   #11
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

dakota1820; I totally understand your issues as I shared your thoughts when I bought my Saturn.
Thoughts on S-series getting hard to find: I love older cars and have owned a bunch and my idea of fun times is spending the day at the PickNPull. Twenty years is the magic number. I've seen it over and over with different brands and models of cars. Twenty years after manufacturing stopped is when it starts getting hard to find used cars of that brand and model. You can still find them, but wow, what a difference in numbers available. Just as you observed. At twenty years those cars stop circulating in the used market and start going to the crushers and boneyards. Sad but true. Everything has a beginning and an end. Circle of Life stuff . . .
Saturn S-series stopped production in 2002. We are right at the twenty year mark. Actually over 20 years for the majority of the Saturn S-series produced.
= = =
"Crazy question but I am asking it. I've never owned an auto saturn ... I always try to buy stick shift ... however have found a couple clean saturn's that are automatics. Am I stupid to pass these up simply for purist reasons ..."
= = =
my opinion. You are being stupid to pass these up. Beggars can't be choosers. I thought the same as you. I wanted a SOHC stick wagon. Very hard to find. Saw some clean DOHC auto wagons. Stumbled across a super clean 2000 DOHC auto wagon for $800 with 105K miles with zero rust, nice interior, and just a bunch of little silly stupid stuff to fix. I love my wagon. No regrets.
= = =
Lessons learned that might help you. I have owned and driven both stick and auto. The autos are getting much better over time. Traffic in all the metro and suburban areas is getting horrible. Too many people and too many cars _everywhere_. Honestly I love the auto and no longer want a stick for metro areas. Having to constantly shift because of traffic is no fun. Still love sticks but no way for metro areas. The Saturn auto is really good and it's easy as pie to downshift and upshift from 3 to D. I do it all the time.
= = =
If you must have a stick get one from the boneyard and throw it in the back of your garage for a tranny swap for a rainy day. That's what I did. I have a MP2 and a MP3 that I got for a few bucks at the boneyard in the back of my shed. But the auto has worked out so well I am pretty sure I am staying with the auto. For sure in metro areas.
= = =
I advise that if you can get a nice clean auto Saturn -- AT A GREAT PRICE -- jump on it. A tranny swap is not that hard. And you might learn to love the auto . . .
If you can get a nice clean auto Saturn at a great price -- and if there are more of these around as you stated that increases the odds you can negotiate or find a great price -- that is a smarter strategy than overpaying for the exact model you want -- the stick Saturn -- and accepting a higher mileage car because you really want that model. Add in the fact you can't find one.
= = =
If you have a hot brunette making eyes at you don't be stupid -- take her home with you! Forget about the redhead she wasn't that into you anyways ...

Last edited by CaptainBlood; 01-17-2021 at 06:07 AM.
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Old 01-17-2021, 07:39 AM   #12
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

I feel like you're right. Kinda a don't look a gift horse in the mouth kind of deal. I'm a purist I love a manual but I think I'd be stupid to pass up clean autos in search for a manual.
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Old 01-17-2021, 02:33 PM   #13
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

Mine is an automatic, and it's fine. I've kind of eyed Saturns looking for a stick, but that wouldn't be my top priority.

I want no/low rust, first. Then DOHC, power windows/locks, an interior that isn't trashed, and hopefully doesn't need immediate brake work.

I drive mostly highway, and I don't want the lower power of the SOHC engine.
...
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Old 01-17-2021, 05:09 PM   #14
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

Quote:
Originally Posted by dakota1820 View Post
I actually do plan on finishing the garage and insulating it we just moved a couple months ago. Got the opportunity to buy my grandparent's old house and I took it.

Yea most saturns I see are either automatics and are clean or or beat to death. A clean stick is getting to be like a unicorn where I am.

A suggestion....

Do NOT drywall.

Use OSB on the walls and ceiling.


1. On overhead - you can use all the insulation you like - and don't have to worry about it sagging out from the weight of insulation.

2. On walls.. It makes it easier to hang stuff wheteever you like it...
...
Currently owned
93 SC2
96 SC2
97 SL2
98 SL2
99 SC2
01 SC2 x 2 yellow
02 SC2
02 SL2 auto
02 SL2 5 sp
parts
2 94 SC2 parted out
2 96 SC2
98 SC2 - rusty frame minus engine.
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Old 01-17-2021, 05:26 PM   #15
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

That is an interesting but very good suggestion. Never would have even thought about it. That's what I'll do. I don't know that I'll do the ceiling right away which I do realize it'll be better if I do. Currently the ceiling is open and has beams going across for storage and stuff so I don't know that I want to comolet seal that off. However if I just insulate the walls that'll probably help quite a bit I would assume.
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Old 01-18-2021, 01:06 PM   #16
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

Quote:
Originally Posted by onlinebiker View Post
A suggestion....

Do NOT drywall.

Use OSB on the walls and ceiling.


1. On overhead - you can use all the insulation you like - and don't have to worry about it sagging out from the weight of insulation.

2. On walls.. It makes it easier to hang stuff wheteever you like it...
Is the garage attached to your house? I haven't fact checked this but I don't believe OSB or Plywood has a sufficient fire rating for use in interior spaces attached you your dwelling. You may run into some red tape with insurance and such. Double check before you do anything.
...
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Old 01-18-2021, 01:17 PM   #17
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

Saturns are have been harder to spot here for a few years now. Seeing a wagon is of course harder still. I am in the south, so it's not like they are rusting out and being abandoned. Personally , I do think it's a bit of looking at the calendar and saying "this car is old". As soon as a big repair comes up (like the water pump fails), they sell it. Then that next person treats it like a disposable car. A mechanic at a local dealer said every saturn he sees is beat to heck, I was a little surprised he didn't realize the value of a car despite the appearance.

I wonder if you can check state car registration records by make/model?

Also finding slim pickings at the scrap yards, I only look once or twice a year just for curiosity. Most of the stock is 3rd gen and rarely ever a manual.

A local buddy says that people here really don't want stick shifts, so they are lower priced and harder to sell.
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Old 01-18-2021, 02:43 PM   #18
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

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Saturns are have been harder to spot here for a few years now. Seeing a wagon is of course harder still. I am in the south, so it's not like they are rusting out and being abandoned. Personally , I do think it's a bit of looking at the calendar and saying "this car is old". As soon as a big repair comes up (like the water pump fails), they sell it. Then that next person treats it like a disposable car. A mechanic at a local dealer said every saturn he sees is beat to heck, I was a little surprised he didn't realize the value of a car despite the appearance.

I wonder if you can check state car registration records by make/model?

Also finding slim pickings at the scrap yards, I only look once or twice a year just for curiosity. Most of the stock is 3rd gen and rarely ever a manual.

A local buddy says that people here really don't want stick shifts, so they are lower priced and harder to sell.

There is what looks to be a clean wagon near me for sale has 140,000 miles for 2,000 my only hesitation has been that it's an automatic. I absolutely hate automatics. That being said I can't help but think I am being to picky since saturn's are getting pretty hard to find.
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Old 01-18-2021, 02:54 PM   #19
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

I'd buy an automatic in a heartbeat. But then a few hundred heartbeats later I'd have swapped in a manual.

As much as I like the wagons, and appreciate my coupe, I think the sedan is the way to go. More parts are available just because they built a lot more.
...
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Old 01-18-2021, 03:41 PM   #20
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Default Re: S series are getting harder and harder to find

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I'd buy an automatic in a heartbeat. But then a few hundred heartbeats later I'd have swapped in a manual.

As much as I like the wagons, and appreciate my coupe, I think the sedan is the way to go. More parts are available just because they built a lot more.

How hard is that to do?
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