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Over Restoration - BLING


Curti
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Is over restoration still alive and well at judged events like AACA, CCCA ,Amelia,PB etc. ?  IE. gloss polished frames, polished copper tubing , chrome where it doesn't belong , detail where it never existed. 

I know the Corvette guys cracked down on the extraneous Bling. The ACD club is making a serous run at it. 

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I do know that M.A.R.C. and M.A.F.C.A have upgraded the Model A Ford Judging Standards to do just that. For example if you read the earliest Judging Standard the chassis color was listed only as "Black". The standard for chassis and components now calls for, Satin Black, Semi Gloss Black and Gloss Black. Only up until a few years ago Gloss Black was used for every chassis part. The internet has done wonders for research. The more people have access to original documents, the more and more correct our restorations will become.

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1 hour ago, Curti said:

Is over restoration still alive and well at judged events like AACA, CCCA ,Amelia,PB etc. ?  IE. gloss polished frames, polished copper tubing , chrome where it doesn't belong , detail where it never existed. 

I know the Corvette guys cracked down on the extraneous Bling. The ACD club is making a serous run at it. 

 

While overrestoration is not penalized in AACA Judging, in AACA Judging, chrome where it doesn't belong is not overrestoration. That is incorrect restoration and deductions should be taken.

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Polished copper brake lines I think are specified in the guidelines as well. I always have judged chassis in the 5 shows I've done, because I'm young. I've yet to see an overdone underframe at an AACA event. Incorrect finish would get a points deduct in my scorecard. Most cars get little attention to the chassis. I see lots of dents and dirt and other things that are obviously more than what one gets from traveling to the show. Still, it's not typically an award killer, but I often end up giving a car it's most points (and it's not because I'm harsh).

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8 minutes ago, Frantz said:

Polished copper brake lines I think are specified in the guidelines as well. 

 

You are correct. I don't know as much about Chrysler products and have never seen any polished copper lines, so that one was not one that I thought of at first glance. From the AACA judging guidelines, "Copper brake lines are correct for Chrysler products of the early 1930's. These lines were painted black. Polished copper brake lines on these vehicles would receive deductions for incorrect finish."

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Funny thing about that....

 

When I was a little kid, my parents were actively involved with the Southern Ohio Chapter of the AACA. BOTH of my parents judged car classes at various events. The most prestigious event in our immediate area during the 1960's and early 70's, to the best of my memory, was the "Hamilton Parade." Mom and Dad judged classes there. I distinctly recall sitting on the floor listening to debates during judging meetings, as grownups discussed "over-restoration." Lots of angry discussion, and little agreement. I clearly recall one older gentleman, who was well respected by other folks, claiming that you should be able to see spot weld marks through the paint on body panels of any early Ford, including Model T's and Model A's (if I remember correctly). Anything else was "over-restoration." He went on to gripe about folks who filled in casting pits on cast iron components, like rear end housings, levers, etc. My dad agreed. 

 

Don't misunderstand me... I am not saying such arguments are right or wrong. Only observing that this debate has been going on for decades, and will NEVER end. 

 

Moreover, I used to be heavily involved in the world of collecting Chevrolet muscle cars...especially the Camaro. I was president of the United States Camaro Club (USCC), and produced our annual USCC "Nationals" event, including class judging. The worst thing about it was the arguments and bitter anger which was caused by competition for trophies which were made of imitation brass, imitation wood, and imitation marble. We hosted our annual Nationals event right in the parking lot of the Norwood, Ohio GM plant which built and assembled Camaros and Firebirds. During tours down the assembly lines, we began to learn that we should not ever use the words "always" or "never" when discussing cars built on an assembly line. No matter what "rule" you may quote...exceptions happened. 

 

Today I harbor deep dislike for judging. None of us know exactly how one individual car or truck left the assembly line when it was brand new. We may have very good information how we think MOST vehicles looked like when new, and we can use that knowledge to create standards which restorers must meet if they wish to win our trophies. But the facts are that any vehicle built on multiple shifts on assembly lines (often multiple lines in different factories) for periods of months or years saw many, many exceptions to "rules" that restorers try to state as absolute facts. 

 

Don't worry too much about trophies. Just ENJOY your old cars or trucks. 

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I wonder whether most restored cars of the

1950's and 1960's, though beautiful, have

incorrect engine compartments--and that the

AACA doesn't realize.

 

My 1961 Imperial is restored, and the engine

bay is very neat.  I saw an excellent original

1961 Imperial at a Walter P. Chrysler Club show,

and the painting of its engine bay (inner fenders,

firewall, and cross-members) was very

haphazard.  There was no neat delineation of

paint there at all, since that part of the car

was purely functional and wasn't designed to be shown.

Edited by John_S_in_Penna (see edit history)
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6 hours ago, lump said:

...The worst thing about it was the arguments and bitter anger which was caused by competition for trophies which were made of imitation brass, imitation wood, and imitation marble.... 

Today I harbor deep dislike for judging....

 

Your posting is compelling, Mr. Lump.

You could be writing editorials for a national magazine.

 

Most trophies at shows--local shows at least--

even when the trophies are 3 feet tall,

are full of particle board, vinyl, and plastic.

It would be shame to argue over something like that!

 

I leave judging to the people who want it, 

and even at Hershey, check "Do Not Judge"

on the registration form.  I enjoy sharing old cars

with an appreciative public, discussing them with fellow

car fans--and most of all, driving them.

Edited by John_S_in_Penna (see edit history)
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11 hours ago, Curti said:

Is over restoration still alive and well at judged events like AACA, CCCA ,Amelia,PB etc. ?  IE. gloss polished frames, polished copper tubing , chrome where it doesn't belong , detail where it never existed. 

I know the Corvette guys cracked down on the extraneous Bling. The ACD club is making a serous run at it. 

Curti: Take it from me that the "bling" still exist especially when you get to the Grand National Level. It appears to me as good as the judges are they are still "overwhelmed" with the "bling" and make it hard for an all original car to get within 5 Pt. of the Top Car.

JMHO P.S. Try to explain this to the judges before the judging started to point out some of the differences but to no avail. BTW-NCRS will take points off for this-the way it should be. The judges are only human and "THIS WILL INFLUENCE WHAT THEY SEE WHEN THEY COMPARE CARS"

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7 hours ago, lump said:

Today I harbor deep dislike for judging. None of us know exactly how one individual car or truck left the assembly line when it was brand new. We may have very good information how we think MOST vehicles looked like when new, and we can use that knowledge to create standards which restorers must meet if they wish to win our trophies. But the facts are that any vehicle built on multiple shifts on assembly lines (often multiple lines in different factories) for periods of months or years saw many, many exceptions to "rules" that restorers try to state as absolute facts. 

 

Don't worry too much about trophies. Just ENJOY your old cars or trucks. 

 

Agree.  Having worked in multiple assembly plants building different vehicles, nothing is absolutely the same.  Build processes are much more consistent in the last 20-30 years since robots have been doing much of the welding and other standard type of work, but prior to the 80's all of the spot welding was done by had by a worker with a spot welding gun in hand.  The worker would just start around a fender flange and start welding spots.  They were not always in exactly the same place on every vehicle.  The only thing consistent is that they were inconsistent in exactly the same placement.

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I've seen a lot of over restoration being passed up in the AACA now, I think , more than ever. At one recent AACA meet I saw several Model A Ford trucks and cars painted in incorrect paint schemes, paint on trucks polished out to a mirror shine, varnished bedwood, pinstipped wheels and even wrong interiors with first place awards! I've also noticed some other vehicles with liberties with high awards. On the other hand, I know of members who have lost points due to sloppy factory welds and toolmarks left as is on some restorations just because the judge didn't like the way they looked. I know that on my '36 Dodge, there are many of these types od blemishes that I'm going to leave in simply because that's the way they came. I attribute judging erros to fewer knowledgeable judges or a relaxed judging system. I know that all judges can't be an expert on every marque or model but I don't think that the judging is as precise as it was decades ago. It seems common practice today for restorers to take more and more liberties with their vehicles and being rewarded for it just because it may look nicer than the original, but I think if organizations like the AACA , MAFCA, MARC, CCCA or any historical preservation group doesn't maintain a high level of authenticity, we are going to continue to lose the real historical value to these vehicles! JMO

Edited by jpage (see edit history)
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I'm 33. So the newest cars permitted in the AACA were new when I was 9 years old. Sure I remember them, but that's far too young to remember showroom details for me (coming from a non-car enthusiast family). I want to see more folks my age, and younger folks too, but we will never have the experience you do on a car from the 1950s or 1960s. I decided a few years ago to try judging as a way of participating in the events. I love the history of autos and while I lack the real experience, I'll go out and say I'm probably better versed in auto history than a vast majority of folks my age. It's a passion for me, which I can't really fully explain even to myself. I feel many folks in the AACA take the award badges with a sense of pride more than as a "trophy". Sure, there are trophy hunters here, but I think the discord comes from the folks who spend years accumulating knowledge to best restore their car to original. Many times those of us who don't quite have the time and money to invest may simply forget that we aren't the cars first mechanic, and parts have been swapped over the yeas because they work, not because they were originals. A 60 year old part and a 65 year old part both look right to someone who doesn't know the difference, and other than if we researched the car ourselves, it's likely that describes most of the judges.

When 5 judges approach a car we each have a job. Prior to taking off points for anything we don't know to be wrong we check with the owner. We give the owner a chance to defend his car with documents. A good explanation can be accepted as well at the judges discernment. The challenge is in time, resources, and a reasonable amount of trust placed in the owners hands. If every point on the vehicle were questioned, it would take a day per car, at the very least. Anyone who has put the time into a proper restoration knows this because you had to research the whole thing while putting it together. Should this be painted body color or black. Should that fuel filter have that bowl or a different one. Was that shade of red offered in 1968. Do you want us standing there checking out the internet to fact check your car? Every single detail is historically correct or not. Even the exceptions to norm represent a true or false existence. If there was never a purple model T with pink stripes, than it never happened. If one was produced, then it did. So it's practically impossible to know everything and we judges look or obvious incorrect parts and defects which don't require owner verification, and we ask about the purple T, which if you brought it to the show like that, there is a good chance you have some sort of documents, or else didn't know what the AACA was all about. So I guess what I'm trying to say is, the owner/restorer is the cars biggest judge. You have to use every resource available for you to make it right. I've yet to have an owner come up and say "I tried doing everything right but found out I did this piece here wrong" while judging. That's what should happen, but that's not realistic to expect. A few years ago I was checking out a car at Hershey and it was after judging, and from a class I hadn't judged. Just admiring a car, you know. The guy was talking about some things on the car and saw my hat and asked if I was judging. I said not, and he proceeded to show some things under the hood that were wrong, had been for years, but worked just fine for him, so no attempts to correct seemed intended. It was wrong, but it's still both a nice car and one that generally is preserving history, just not 100%

If the clubs purpose is of historic preservation we have to check ourselves sometimes. Ingrain in ourselves that we are not seeking awards, but recognition of a correctly preserved or restored car. It should be our pride to do everything as correct and well as we can, and for the sake of that mission, acknowledge where we fell short. I'd much rather see that car on the field with the wrong parts than not see it at all, but the wrong parts should be shown to be wrong. Not to bring up a sore subject, but it was always one of my irks with the museum as well. I had a shop teacher tell me the "the wrong lube was better than no lube at all", and that goes with restorations as well. But it's of equal value to know what the right lube is, and where you have the wrong stuff, so others don't see and teach themselves that wrong is right. I'm young, so I have to trust you guys have done your homework to make your car right, or else we are going to be doing a long google search together as we verify each and every part.

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3 hours ago, Frantz said:


When 5 judges approach a car we each have a job. Prior to taking off points for anything we don't know to be wrong we check with the owner. We give the owner a chance to defend his car with documents. A good explanation can be accepted as well at the judges discernment. The challenge is in time, resources, and a reasonable amount of trust placed in the owners hands. If every point on the vehicle were questioned, it would take a day per car, at the very least.

Frantz: I concur what you said above but differ when you indicate "If every point on the vehicle". When you have to be within 5 points of the Top Car (Grand National)>EVERY SINGLE POINT IS CRITICAL!!! Something has got to give and it comes down to this:

1)Change the requirement of being within 5 Points to a more realistic number. Or

2)Take more time in Judging and get input from the car owners to a more degree.

Yes you give the owner the right to defend his car but no one is giving you the input of taking points off the improper over restored cars that are explained above. (eg:Gloss Point vs. Semi Gloss)

Every-time you let this slide the original car has a more difficult time of getting within the 5 point threshold.

Of course this is JMHO--Larry

It comes down to this: It not the points taken off of your car but the points that are not taken off the Top Car.

Edited by llskis
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I don't disagree. I was speaking from a "what happens" perspective. I think if we spent more time on the cars, far fewer would be eligible for awards. Not saying it's a bad thing, and certainly giving out awards like candy is not a mission we embrace. Unrestored cars frankly shouldn't get many awards per the standard. I see very few that shouldn't lose something on a good majority of their parts, and you can't take off fractional points, so by the standard of less than showroom, that would be a point deduct per item. After 60 years the stuff isn't perfect. Heck, the 25 year old cars look shabby next to a 400 point restored car. That's where the value of HPOF shines. I'd rather own a worn but original car myself. And the standard for restoration is wrong means full deduction, so less awards there as well.

Given the time, I see the value of more interaction. Perhaps a peer review would be helpful where other drivers in the same class are given an opportunity to "flag" items they think are wrong, and then the owner given the chance to defend it, it would have to be helpful and not spiteful. The system we have though works very very well given the constraints of the shows. You should definitely give judging a try to see what it's all about. It's not perfect, but given the unrealistic idea that the judge should be a subject matter expert on what they are judging (which is not how AACA guidelines are set up) I think it's both fair to owners of the cars and inviting to get folks involved without a huge burden of knowledge being required.

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I was having coffee with a friend who is working on a 1956 Plymouth station wagon. He was talking about the poor quality of the original build. In particular the unpainted inner surfaces of the dashboard where rust was creeping out around the edge of the gauges , his work on that particular day. I observed "So, you might consider most Chrysler products are over restored.". "Definitely!" he replied.

 

Interesting coincidence.

Bernie

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I have both original and street rod cars.  I attend several shows each year and the difference in the judging is seamless between the two.  Bling and hi gloss paint gets most if not all the awards.

i agree with John_S_in_Penna.  I'll take "Darn, that's really a nice car" from a fellow car fan anytime.

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It is just as important to guard against "under restoration". Folks seem to love semi gloss paint because it hides a lot of flaws. I would wager that semi gloss is used in as many or maybe even more places where it doesn't belong than is gloss paint. "They were never that shiny from the factory" is another of those chestnuts that may or may not be true depending on the car. Many cars were indeed that shiny from the factory. Don't confuse poor restoration with authentic restoration. There is a difference.

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Two quick ones: #1. A awesome brass Model T Roadster had little press chatter marks in the fenders, which was common in late run stampings,  When the owner was complimented on the correctness he was offended because "He paid for perfect".

                           #2  I saw a 1955 T-Bird with 8,000 miles in an estate.  Looking under the hood the judges would have croaked,  No fancy paint job, just 1955 Ford production finishes.  It was nice to see how they were really made.

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A question was poised to me by the current president of the ACD club.  If there was a Corvette for sale  a thousand miles from you, that  you were interested in buying and it had recently won Bloomington gold; would you feel it necessary to go there to inspect the car?  My answer was quick and sure, No.   IF there was an Auburn speedster for sale that had just won a first senior at the ACD Labor day reunion , would I feel it necessary to inspect it. The answer is yes.  That is because the judging standards and guidelines are not up to snuff. Those Corvette judges are tough, as they should be. NO BLING !  As I stated in my first post the ACD club is addressing that issue. This is because people still want to fill in the factory welds with bondo, etc. It is so much easier to over restore the car that it is to do the research.  

 

For all judged cars at non marque meets It is VERY difficult for the judges to be experts on all of the makes of cars. For that reason when I attend those meets and have the car judged, I have the grill badge on the front seat to let those judges know that the car won a first senior at the national ACD judged event.  I personally have been building Auburns for 25+ years. My hobby is to build the car back to the condition  is was on the dealer showroom floor after dealer prep.

Over time, I have purchased low mile original cars, that have only been maintained. They are time capsules and a treasure trove of obscure details. For me, the fun is in the building. Correct restorations enhance the value of a car, just like fine art.

I always have my cars judged,  and I judge. For me, it is a learning experience !

Franz, I applaud your interest and tenacity.

Restorer32, Having been on this board for a number of years I am confident you know of which you speak.

JPage  I agree !

46 Woodie  YES, Model T's and A';s  have definitely raised the bar . That is a good thing.

 

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The only problem I see at the events I judge at is many judges are just too critical in their judging areas.  Maybe it is because of seeing many over restored cars on the fields and then they come up on one that doesn't have as much bling.  At every Judging school they emphasis to judge fairly and not be over critical, but on every team I've been on I always see that individual who is very very critical of something.  Personally I like to see all types of cars, the bling type and the normal home garage restored car, and I consider each one when I judge.  As to the criticism of the judges that is often given, I agree with others that say you can't know every car. In the years I have been judging, and like I said it has been a few, but not as many as others, I've judged, mid 1950's cars, early 1930's cars,  early and late muscle cars, and a mixed batch of vehicles from Messerschmidt, mid teen cars and motorcycles. My cars that I own are a 1920's era cars and a 1971 British Sports Car, so it's impossible for me to know what every car was like coming off the assembly line.  It interesting that I have a copy of a silent movie made in 1923 of the Durant car plant in Toronto, Canada. It shows them painting the touring cars on the assembly line with paint coming out the end of a garden hose. Excess paint is going into the troft below. Do you think that paint had runs in it and thin spots? How about them parking the cars on the room to let the lacquer paint dry. Think there was bug spots.  As long as it's not a blatant error, this should be considered when judging.

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Re: visible spot welds on auto bodies. Ford pickups and vans from the sixties and seventies were spot welded in such a way that the spot welds were visible around the wheel wells. These spot welds were NOT visible on the showroom floor, they developed "dimples" as the vehicle was used. They could be quite visible after several years if the truck had a lot of use. Not so much if the truck had low miles or was babied and not used hard or heavily loaded.

 

I take from this, that a vehicle restored to showroom condition should not show the spot welds.

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Having set up the "platinum class" for a national club, I also agree with Lump and no longer judge (for that matter I also put up "display only" signs and a few times have had a contest to so how many "incorrect" things people could find.

 

Seemed like many of the top cars were there to add $$$ to the sales price. The major problem I have seen is inconsistency in judging, to really judge a car takes a team and time which is rarely available.

 

Perhaps am a bit jaded since I went to GMI during the muscle car era and saw much of what was done both on and off the assembly line (e.g. many super duty Pontiacs were listed as having a 2bbl-389. The 421s were installed separately.

 

My point is for many cars just having someone able to judge "properly" is difficult.

 

So I prefer to just have fun with mine & add what I feel needed (e.g. all of my cars have radial tires, halogen headlamps and hands-free phone capability) for my comfort & safety.  My choice.

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5 hours ago, padgett said:

Having set up the "platinum class" for a national club, I also agree with Lump and no longer judge (for that matter I also put up "display only" signs and a few times have had a contest to so how many "incorrect" things people could find.

 

Seemed like many of the top cars were there to add $$$ to the sales price. The major problem I have seen is inconsistency in judging, to really judge a car takes a team and time which is rarely available.

 

Perhaps am a bit jaded since I went to GMI during the muscle car era and saw much of what was done both on and off the assembly line (e.g. many super duty Pontiacs were listed as having a 2bbl-389. The 421s were installed separately.

 

My point is for many cars just having someone able to judge "properly" is difficult.

 

So I prefer to just have fun with mine & add what I feel needed (e.g. all of my cars have radial tires, halogen headlamps and hands-free phone capability) for my comfort & safety.  My choice.

 

How is this parallel the investment quality of gold in post #2 ?

Edited by Curti
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When I was a service rep, I remember looking at cars from the late 70's/early 80's that the paint was so thick on the doors that they had "icicles" dripping from the bottom of the doors.  There were NO PERFECT PAINT JOBS on anything that is more than 25 years old today.  This was because the technology, paint, and the processes were not as good as they are today. 

 

Between the late 80's to about 2000 there was an extremely large improvement in paint quality where today is would be hard to find much wrong with any paint job on any car from any plant.

Edited by Larry Schramm (see edit history)
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I have done restoration work on a few GM cars from the late 20's to early 30's and can tell you that I've seen many instances of out of spec (what we believe to be correct spec) things done on original cars. In almost every single car I've done interior work on, I've found many times shoddy work, especially where it wouldn't be seen easily. When I pull original interiors out I've found many screws put in badly to the point that they were hammered home. Bent and flattened out on the heads. I've found pieces of wood not joined per spec, extra pieces added where they shouldn't have been. Wiring nailed right through and the nails left in the wire. I just bring this up as many try to restore even the substructure to perfection when in reality, many were not even close to what some have come to believe.

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10 hours ago, chistech said:

I have done restoration work on a few GM cars from the late 20's to early 30's and can tell you that I've seen many instances of out of spec (what we believe to be correct spec) things done on original cars. In almost every single car I've done interior work on, I've found many times shoddy work, especially where it wouldn't be seen easily. When I pull original interiors out I've found many screws put in badly to the point that they were hammered home. Bent and flattened out on the heads. I've found pieces of wood not joined per spec, extra pieces added where they shouldn't have been. Wiring nailed right through and the nails left in the wire. I just bring this up as many try to restore even the substructure to perfection when in reality, many were not even close to what some have come to believe.

This is very true. There was little if any quality control . It got better over the years and is pretty good now.  If there is a bolt missing in a fender of a 20's 30's car, put the proper one in. By proper I mean,  is the bolt a 'high hex' or a typical hardware store item .  If the bolt was originally parkerized then parkerize it. Not chrome, not polished.  NO bling

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Try working on a Rolls Silver Ghost. We did a 1920 Locke bodied Phaeton. The door hardware from one side to the other was nowhere near interchangeable. Even the door wood varied a half inch or more from one side to the other. The hardware had obviously been made to fit the poorly made doors.

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4 minutes ago, Restorer32 said:

Try working on a Rolls Silver Ghost. We did a 1920 Locke bodied Phaeton. The door hardware from one side to the other was nowhere near interchangeable. Even the door wood varied a half inch or more from one side to the other. The hardware had obviously been made to fit the poorly made doors.

 

I can only imagine the horrors of a custom bodied car. The guy on the left side didn't know what the guy on the right was doing.  

Auburn speedsters are a custom bodied car from the factory. The fenders were made individually to fit the car. I have original fenders that are lap welded on one side and butt welded on the other. 

There was a black 38 Chevy that had a red pinstripe on one side and cream on the other. 

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Even '32 Packard convertible bodies can differ by 1/4" or more in size from one side to the other. Currently working on an all original '48 Buick Woodie. One of the cutouts for the door hinges, which were supposed to snugly hold the hinges, was cut about 1/4" too large on one side of the car. The factory simply mounted the hinge and filled the gap with something resembling bondo and varnished it along with the wood. Worked on a '49 Bentley where two cutouts in the body, necessary for top iron clearance, were obviously chopped in the finished body with a hammer and cold chisel.

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Curti your Chevy comment reminds me of going down to the Chevy dealer as a kid in the 70s - at one point dad was in the market for a new pick up so we went a few times and I saw a couple of Chevy models with GMC tailgates.  I have read, as I am sure a lot of have, restoration accounts of coachbuilt cars with big differences side to side - bodywork, fenders, etc.  The Snyder Packard with the French body comes to mind.

 

Had a friend once put his mid year Corvette through the NCRS process.  The judging took place at a Chevy dealer back lot on a Saturday afternoon and took several hours, I believe they had less than 6 cars in all.  I have to believe they have their stuff together with that process...  Bear in mind reams and reams of documentation and restoration guidance is available on those cars - not unlike our Model As...

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Hey Curt;

    The funny thing is that since I've been judging, I have not been assigned to Judge the cars of the 20's, let alone a Durant, which you just don't see much of at shows.  I did Judge a car from the Teens this last go around, but just have been assigned to Judge everything else.  I know from my study of Durant products and other Durant Motors Automobile Club member's cars that it's kind of a joke among the members that you can't really say something wasn't original on a Durant model. I don't think they had build sheets and we sometimes have found mismatched headlights, or items on a car that was not supposed to be on that model.  I think they'd send the parts runner up for two headlights and what he grabbed went on the car. We even have one 1928 model Durant that was supposed to have an oil filtrator (early type of oil filter) put on it, has all the mounting areas on the block but the block was never drilled through and the filtrator was never installed. You can tell by the original engine paint in the area. Yep quality control just wasn't there.

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5 hours ago, Steve_Mack_CT said:

down to the Chevy dealer as a kid in the 70s - at one point dad was in the market for a new pick up so we went a few times and I saw a couple of Chevy models with GMC tailgates

 

I worked for a Dodge dealer in 74-75, when Chrysler employees just did not care, ... Some new car stuff was beyond belief..

 

Body fit was awful, water leaks in car and trunks, nearly100 spare fasteners (screws/nuts/bolts) dropped on the bare floor before carpet was installed, and foot wear caused holes on those raised bumps in the carpet.  Yes, I counted the spare fasteners on one carpet job!

 

Worst case of a customer enduring Mopars pi-- poor workmanship:  One zero degree winter day, a small, meek looking guy in a suit, came in with a wrecker driver, stood at the service desk looking frozen to death.  He meekly described why his late model Dart got towed off the interstate during predawn commute...  He had a flat tire on the highway, opened the trunk to get spare and jack.  The trunk had leaked so much summer rain that the spare tire well was now a block of solid ice.  He explained in agonizing detail on how he spent an hour chipping ice to get the spare tire out.  He went to put it on the car, and it was the wrong bolt pattern.  Darts/Valiants used the small 4" bolt circle wheels on cheapie models with drum brakes, and the better models had the 4.5" pattern for disc brakes..

 

The service manager was biting his tongue to not bust out laughing...not at the customer, but at the never ending idiotic mistakes made by Mopar.  Mopars were absolute garbage in those years, if you got a real bad one, you switched brands forever.  I'm sure the big three were all alike in those awful years.

 

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