Odometer reset to zero after full restoration. - Vintage Mustang Forums
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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 09:24 AM Thread Starter
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Odometer reset to zero after full restoration.

I saw a classic 1970's Yamaha 50cc moped for sale on eBay and it has had a full nut and bolt restoration. It is basically like brand new now. So I am reading the description and looking at the pictures, and I notice that the odometer has been set back to zero. Well it is showing just under 3 miles now as they have ridden it a little since. And in the text it says ultra low mileage, 3 miles since restoration. Not sure if the speedometer was restored or replaced with an NOS one.

So basically I was wondering where people stand on this. The vehicle does not matter what it is, bike, car, etc. The above is just what I happened to see.

In the UK it is an offence to wind the odometer back, but I am not sure what happens in the situation where an odometer breaks and needs to be replaced with a new one. In the days of mechanical odometers, it was a common thing with dodgy used car dealers to wind the miles back on a car and replace a few things like the gear stick knob, pedal rubbers, etc and pass it off as a lower mileage car.

When I say wind the miles back, I do not mean like in Ferris Bueller's Day Off with the Ferrari and leaving it running in reverse. It is just a term and I mean taking the odometer apart and doing internally.

I had a similar'ish situation with my motorbike and my speedometer broke and was unfixable as the delicate spring for the needle had snapped. So I purchased a used one on eBay and fitted that. But before I fitted it, I took it apart and set the miles exactly to what my old one had. How I feel about what I did is that I am being honest and not trying to deceive anyone with a different mileage. It is hard to wind the miles back now in the UK as for a long time our yearly inspection logs the mileage, so you could only wind it back to the mileage of the last inspection at the most.

To me the mileage of a vehicle does not matter as long as it has been looked after, regular maintenance has been done and it has not been neglected. And especially with an older classic vehicle, the mileage is almost irrelevant and the condition of the car ( paint, rust, etc ) is more important. I could not care less about an old Mustang having 200,000 or more miles on it. I guess with newer vehicles the mileage does matter, but I never buy newer vehicles to have that worry. I think a well maintained and looked after car wears its high mileage with pride. Who was that guy on YouTube with the million mile Lexus LS400?

This reminds me of a joke. A man is trying to sell his car. His friend asks him how it is going. He says he is having trouble selling it because of the high mileage. So his friend says he should wind the odometer back and then sell it. A few weeks later they meet up again. His friend asks him if he has sold the car yet. And he says that with the lower mileage he decided keep it.

Jeremy.
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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 09:46 AM
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It the case of the moped, that sound like legit miles, if the thing has been completely rebuilt, I wouldn't have an issue with that. I might be more suspicious of a car that has really low miles that don't make sense.
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 09:55 AM Thread Starter
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This is the bike if anyone is interested. These things make pretty decent money now. When you turn 16 in the UK, you can only ride a bike of 50cc maximum. And before a certain date at the end of the 1970's, 50cc mopeds were not restricted and could do 40 - 50MPH. After this date, they were all restricted to 30MPH maximum. So the older mopeds were the hot ticket for some extra speed at 16. And now they make good money to enthusiasts.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/YAMAHA-FS...N/323834600563
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 09:57 AM
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When I built my GT350 I basically had new everything- engine, trans, rear axle, etc. The body was obviously original albeit 1/2 or more new sheetmetal on it, but for the most part- all mechanicals and suspension were new. I set the speedo at 0 when done since it was a 'new' car again to me. I don't plan on selling the car, but if I did, I'd disclose that info anyway. In Iowa, once the car hits a certain age, the mileage is exempt anyway when buying or selling per the actual registration process. IMO it doesn't really matter what the mileage says on a complete rebuild or a new build speedo. I've actually set new speedo's and especially Dakota Digital speedo's to 0 several times, but all during complete restorations- not just speedo replacement. I do agree that it's not right to roll back miles when selling newer cars, but with these old cars who knows if the clusters have been swapped out, broke, or rolled back already anyway, right? MTC anyway..

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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 10:05 AM Thread Starter
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I imported my 69 Fastback from the US in the early 1990's. It was just a regular 302, non power drum brakes, standard interior, etc. But someone had fitted a Mach 1 woodgrain instrument cluster and passenger clock cluster. So I have no idea if the mileage is genuine or not. But I did not care. The car was virtually rust free with sound mechanical, good engine and gearbox and pretty decent paint. That is all that mattered to me. Suspension bushes, ball joints and other bits and bobs, I can replace with ease.
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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 10:22 AM
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It's essentially very illegal to roll back odometers for purposes of defrauding someone. Other than that it's not a big deal on stuff that qualifies as antique. Some states have laws that vary a bit though.
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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 10:39 AM
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I don't know about other states, but where I live (Nebraska) you sell the car with an odometer statement. You basically certify that either the odometer is correct, OR it doesn't reflect the actual mileage and you list what the actual mileage is, OR it doesn't reflect the actual mileage and the mileage is unknown. The point is, as GypsyR says, it's illegal to try to defraud the buyer with an inaccurate odometer, but things break, get replaced, get reset when a vehicle is rebuilt, etc. As long as everyone knows what the truth it, there's no problem.
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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 11:03 AM
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Most later model Ford vehicles using analog type odometers have a feature that will prevent most odometer rollbacks. When someone attempts to roll the numbers back, they do not line up correctly, one or two of the numbers will be out of line. With an un-tampered odo, the numbers are all in line.
With a digital odometer, you can send it back to Ford with the vin, and get it reset.
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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 11:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaleB View Post
I don't know about other states, but where I live (Nebraska) you sell the car with an odometer statement. You basically certify that either the odometer is correct, OR it doesn't reflect the actual mileage and you list what the actual mileage is, OR it doesn't reflect the actual mileage and the mileage is unknown. The point is, as GypsyR says, it's illegal to try to defraud the buyer with an inaccurate odometer, but things break, get replaced, get reset when a vehicle is rebuilt, etc. As long as everyone knows what the truth it, there's no problem.
I know NY and SC have the same/similar statements.

Anyone ever used Dakota Digital? I have a set for my C10 and 68 Firebird in boxes in the garage waiting to go in.

I'm going to start those vehicles at zero. Both will be installed when the rebuild motors go in. The Odometer on my C10 broke several years ago. Sometimes it doesn't move, sometimes it starts rolling and moves a few thousand miles at a time . It had "77K" when I got it. I know I've rolled it over (way before it broke), and I'm positive it had 177 or 277K on it when I got it... it was wore out.

When I bought my 68 firebird some of the interior was apart and the dash was out. I can't remember the mileage, but when I got it home I realized it was a 68 Camaro gauge cluster, as firebirds never had the "tic tock Tach" option. So who knows what the real mileage is on that car...

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Last edited by 65 Pony; 06-19-2019 at 11:14 AM.
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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 11:23 AM
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Pretty sure the odometer police have an office adjacent to the mattress tag police


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post #11 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 11:25 AM Thread Starter
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I previously had a 1979 5.0 Mustang Pace Car which I sold about 6 years ago. It came to the UK from Switzerland where it was sold new. The odometer was in KPH and not MPH. So when it got registered here, the reading went into the system as miles. It had just over 50,000 kilometres on it, so even in miles it was very low for a 1979 car.
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post #12 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 11:46 AM
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Pretty sure the odometer police have an office adjacent to the mattress tag police


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post #13 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 12:19 PM
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I've got a friend who worked at a Chevrolet dealership in his youth and he tells stories of rewinding the odometers on their cars for resale purposes. Things like that bother me, but if somebody can show proof that a car underwent a full restoration and is in like-new condition, I wouldn't be too bothered by it.

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And not nearly enough time

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post #14 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 12:42 PM
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My 65 shows 70k on the odo. Ive owned the car for 4 months.

The PO owned the car 14 years and stated that he put 10k on it.

So what I have is a 54 year old car that shows 70k on the odo and zero documentation or proof that it was rolled over 0, 1, 2, 3, 4 ,5+ times, or even proof that it is the original odo.

Based on the information that I have, I am the second owner and the miles are original because I have no proof that my claim isnt false.

My car must be worth 50k.........at least!


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post #15 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 08:58 PM
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Here in Texas the odometer reading is EXEMPT on vehicles that are more than 25 years old.
On a car that has been rebuilt I doubt that anybody cares what the original mileage was. If somebody is in the market for an original, low mileage car then yes, the mileage may be a concern. In that case it is up to the buyer to examine the car and decide if they think the indicated mileage is actual.


Anybody looking for an original, low mileage Mustang? Here's one for sale.
https://www.garagekeptmotors.com/veh...5-ford-mustang
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