First off if the lock smith damaged the lock and or the column you need to ask him for his insurance company info as he is responsible for the damage he does to the car. As for the front end work, Are you plaining on doing the work yourself?
Hello Jamie: I have tried to call the locksmith who worked on the car (Jim) and his younger employee (Rick, who I believe is the one who ruined the column). I told Jim about the situation and what the mechanic said about the damages. He said he would have Rick get back to me. This was on Wednesday and so far no response. I did try to call Rick's number first and his phone was temporarily disconnected. So, I don't believe they will be of much help.
I am not planning to do the front end work myself. But I want to take one step at a time. I want to buy the ignition/column parts myself and bring them to the mechanic to fix. From there I want them to advise me about what part needs replacing on the front driver side regarding the air ride system. If it is just a strut assembly or air bag which seems to be anywhere from $100-200, I would replace that instead of spending the money converting to coil springs.
This is not my personal car but a car I helped a young man buy and he made unwise decisions (two speeding tickets a week after obtaining the car, two more tickets for then driving without a license). He moved to Milwaukee, sold it for way too cheap and it landed back in his lap since the guy he sold it to never put title in his name. The new owner was car jacked and shot so the car landed in an alley and then towed to the impound where we took it out. We did this because we didn't know if the current owner had money for all that this involved and it still was a pretty good car from what we could see at the tow lot.
DO you have an ebay account? There are many great deals on good used parts such as the steering column. There are also so great deals on new air bags for the front and rear of your cart.
Is the owner ok? I hate to hear about people getting car jacked and even worse if they where shot. If you need me to look up the parts on ebay for you I would be glade to do so, but you will have to be the one to bid on them .
I do have an email account. I don't mind looking on ebay for parts. Is this standard procedure with mechanics (will they allow a customer to bring in parts so they don't have to pay the standard markup by the shop) ?The owner is OK, we worked it out to return some money to him for what we felt he should receive. He was shot three times in the thigh and buttocks but has recovered. He feels very fortunate.
I know the car is worth at least $2000 if I make the repairs. But at this point I just don't know what "surprises" will come up as we are in the midst of having it fixed. It's like a house remodel...you only planned to change the sink but when problems arise then you may have to change the faucet, the counter, the base cabinet, the floor.......thanks for your offer to look on ebay. That is fine if you would like to do. All I am certain of right now is the need for a used steering column and maybe a used ignition.
Here is a link for a column for your lincoln needs if you have a column shift. IT will cost you less then $75.00 with shipping and it has a key with it.