Classics a hit at auto swap meet - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Classics a hit at auto swap meet

November 21, 2004

- Real metal frames and chrome and paint shiny enough to see your reflection. These are traits of a true classic car, and enthusiasts have a checklist of things they look for before they buy one.

"The shape they're in, the way they look, the way they're painted, the interior. It's hard to find a good car," says Leonard Bishop of Hasty's Car Country.

Bishop spends most of his time on the road at shows like the 14th Annual Automotive Swap Meet.selling his boss's rare hot rods.

"He's real picky at what he buys because he wants the best of everything because that's what people want," Bishop says.

But, do more people want classic Chevy's like Hasty's '68 Camaro, or Ford's like Robert Oswalt's 1970 Mustang?

"To a true enthusiast it doesn't matter what it is," says Oswalt.

Oswalt turned his restoration hobby into a business 23 years ago. He gets revved up about all cars, but still admits that Mustangs are his first love.

"I always wanted one, but didn't get one until 1976 when I bought it for my oldest son," he says.

Over the decades he's owned dozens, some even more than once.

"I've sold this car three times," Oswalt says about his red 1970 Ford.

Each time Oswalt says he's made a profit.

Classic car dealers agree that's one thing that separates these old autos from new cars, they go up in value.

"In 1978 I bought my first Shelby. I paid a thousand dollars for it. Now they're $100,000," says Oswalt.

They may not have all the gadgets and gizmos of a car fresh off the assembly line, but these dealers say these oldies but goodies will never go out of style.

Four thousand vendors set up shop for the three day event making this year's Automotive Swap Meet the largest one ever in Moultrie.

Posted at 5:00 PM by elaine.armstrong@walb.com

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