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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all,

I am looking to buy a '78 GTS (my first Ferrari), and I have a couple of questions. OK, a FEW questions!

1) I am curious if this model Ferrari has any trim tag to indicate the color of the exterior or interior of the car?
2) Are there stampings or castings numbers on the engine to indicate if it is original?
3) The interior looks original (black), but there are carpeted areas on the left and right undersides of the dash that appear to be a light brown color. Is this normal or was the original color likely tan, but changed in the past except for these pieces?
4) The car seems to have an occasional "chirping" noise that occurs from (I think) the tailpipes especially during accelleration. It is remarkably similar to the "chirpy" sound from an old VW beetle with original exhaust. Is this normal?
5) Any recommendations on books with lots of technical info (I've got parts manuals on order!)
6) This is a ridiculous question (you have to see it and have more info I know), but is $17,500 a decent price for this car, providing that the body is entirely rust-free, the paint is an 8 of 10, the interior is a 7 of 10, no accident history, two owner, 90K :eek: miles, gold :-? exterior, black interior?

Thanks so much in advance for your help! Sound like a GREAT board!!!!!!!! I look forward to hangin out here often! :p

Michael Hampson
Marietta, GA
 

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Michael,

Sorry can't answer GTS-specific questions but you should get hold of this book (you will become an overnight guru!):
"Original Ferrari V8 - A Restorer's Guide" by Keith Bluemel (unsure how spelt)
ISBN 1-870979-78-8

Despite it's title it doesn't show you how to spraypaint, etc but goes into the fullest detail about how each model was specified, eg engine, trim, paint colours, tyres, badges, ID plates, etc, etc. It covers all V8 models from 308 GT4 to F40 and has lots on GTB/GTS variants. The only info missing is decoding the VIN number, but that is available elsewhere on the web.

The engine no is stamped on top of "vee" at cam-belt end. I don't know how to determine if it is a replacement, although the actual engine TYPE code should match your car model.

Good luck on the rest.
 

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Hey mhampson, have you checked out Ferrari of Atlanta and see what they think? I would see what they have to say but personally I think $17,500 is a pretty fair price given the miles and condition. That color combo would certainly have to fit your tastes because it's definitely unusual.

www.ferrariofatlanta.com
 

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mhampson said:
Hello all,
2) Are there stampings or castings numbers on the engine to indicate if it is original?

6) This is a ridiculous question (you have to see it and have more info I know), but is $17,500 a decent price for this car, providing that the body is entirely rust-free, the paint is an 8 of 10, the interior is a 7 of 10, no accident history, two owner, 90K :eek: miles, gold :-? exterior, black interior?

Thanks so much in advance for your help! Sound like a GREAT board!!!!!!!! I look forward to hangin out here often! :p

Michael Hampson
Marietta, GA
Michael,

Welcome to the forum. I can answer the following. Yes there is a metal stamp that will have the cavallino horse and the SN of the car. If Dirk see's this lets hope he'll post a photo (hint, hint).

There are two members which have bought a 308 recently. One from Washington state and I think he paid near this same price. There is also Dane that recently sold his blue 308. I'm not sure how much he got. I know that given the color this could reflect aprox $500 difference (not much). Of course this is a little high on the mileage which will reflect the price. Overall I think not a bad price.

As everyone will suggest, ask the sales person if you can have it checked by an independent mechanic.
 

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About the color tag, there should be one in the engine bay. It is a yellow sticker with a color code on it. This is the exterior color. I am not sure the interior color is noted anywhere...


Niels
 

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BTW, I don't think it is easy to determine if the engine is original. I think the engine numbers are not the same as the serial numbers, so 'matching numbers' do not exist with the 308 series. You can see if the engine TYPE is a proper one for a 1978 GTS, but the engine number itself can't tell you much unless you know which number should have been in there in 1978.


Niels
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you VERY MUCH for the info!!!

Thanks so much for helping out. I am freaking out wondering if I'm making the right decision, and am supposed to wrap up the deal this afternoon!!!

Keep the responses rolling in!!!

Michael
 

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this is the plate that shows the vin number in the engine bay
that's from a 308 GTBi US version

and about the color, just like Niels said there's another plate in there that gives the color code
 

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Michael,

Looking into things a bit more, I don't think you will find a VIN number (the 17-digit ZFF.......... number) on a plate on the car, as I think they only started around 1980. The car should have a metal plate on the RHS of the engine bay which gives the vehicle TYPE code (should be F106AB) and a chassis number. The chassis no. should be an odd no. somewhere in the 24000 - 28000 range for 1978?

The only way I can think of vetting the engine is to check the plate fixed in the vee at the top of the block at the RH end. It should have the type code F106A (or AB?) and a number. I don't know what range of numbers would correlate to 1978 but anyone here with a car around that age should be able to give you an idea. Any other type code means that the engine has come from another model (eg GT4).

While you're checking numbers, the chassis number shaould also match a stamping on the top RH chassis rail adjacent to the engine-bay plate, and also the plate fixed to the topside of the steering column.

I think the yellow paint sticker mentioned by Niels may be on the underside of the engine compartment lid.

Good luck :D . If really unsure, remember that these models are pretty freely available and something else will come along soon.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Well, I bought it!

Thanks so much for your help. :D I checked the engine stamping (actually casting) and it was F106AE which is right according to the owner's manual. There is also a stamping (or was it cast... I can't remember) that reads 01517. I assume it's an engine serial number of some sort.

The paint color metalized sticker (I see now that it is mentioned in the manual) is blue with a silver background and has a handwritten code of 633.4.015. I guess that's the code for gold. The tag also has some Italian on it "Salchi" and "Questa Vettura e Stata Verniciata" and "Con Smalto" followed by the written code. I guess this is the original tag. Looks like it.... according to Babelfish, the sentence reads "This Car and Be Painted with enamel". "Salchi" must be the paint brand used. Cool!

All of the chassis number stampings were the same 29453 on the steering column, frame rail next to the engine, and door jamb.

I'll start delving deeper tonight. I hear it calling my name from the basement right now!! :p Whoohoo! I have achieved another childhood dream!!!!!!!!

Gotta go! :green: :green:

THANKS!
Michael
 

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Although not for GTS 308s, maybe this can be informative: http://www.308gtb.de/

The Bluemel book gives a F106AB engine type, so the E probably stands for another market? It is not mentioned in the book.

The color code you mention I cannot find but most probably it will be Oro Chiaro. The interior code should have a VM code and black is VM8500 and tan or cream are VM4208 and VM3997 respectively.

Seen this colour just once, very special!

Looks like it is an honest car, enjoy!


Niels
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Yep. It's mine!

Dj, yes, it's mine now! I drove it home this afternoon (it's 7:00 PM here now). I'll start tinkering with it tomorrow. There are a lot of little things that need attention.

Niels: Is the interior code printed on the car anywhere? It's not on the tag that has the paint code on it. I would like to know if the interior is the original color.

My manual lists the F106AE as the engine code, so it must be for U.S. cars. Interestingly, I was interested in a basket case a couple of years back which was an '83 GTSi and it was also the same color gold.

Michael
 

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Looks like a nice car! - Like you say, what an unusual color, I'm not sure I've ever seen this on another Ferrari, but it looks good.. Congratulations on the new arrival!

Dermot
 

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Wow! Congratulations - good to see a classic shape in an unusual colour - it looks excellent.

Welcome to the party!!
 

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Welcome here :D

For some very strange reason I didn't read this post untill now. Looks like you bought yourself a very nice car. Thanks for sharing the pics and s/n of the car. Hope to see you here more often.
 

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Michael

i'm guessing that your location is in the US??

too bad for me, i would love to see that color in person and take tons of pics :green:


BTW you wouldn't happen to be in monterey next year?
 
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