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In great need for help on Vin and engine number Buick 1953

Guest joeybuick

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Guest joeybuick

Dear all,

First of all to explain my problem, is to tell you guys I live in the Netherlands in Europe.
I bought a 1953 buick super eight through a Belgian guy who imported it from California.
I received a title with my purchase.
In order to get a license plate here you need to pass a technical control and they will stamp the original VIN number in the frame if this has not been done yet.
Unfortunately on the US title the engine number has been use as the VIN number.
Therefor I need to proof that this engine number is linked to this body in order to get a license plate and go on the road.
In other words I need to proof that the Title I have is linked to this car, not just the engine. If not I can not get my car road legal.
Hereby all the information I have:

(vin number at door style) 47022232

Engine number (and also registered ID number on title) V1878315

ID plate at engine bay

1953 MOD 52
style no 53-4519
body BK9324
Trim no 50
Paint no 58

Hopefully somebody can give me some precious info in order to get my license plate



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To the best of my knowledge, it isn't linked. There were no VIN numbers yet on American cars in those days, and the car was usually titled to the engine number OR the frame number. It varied by state. A few states used both the engine number AND the frame number. They almost never matched each other. Body numbers often didn't mean much, and sometimes weren't even serial.


Could there also be a frame number on your title somewhere?


By the early 1950s, they probably could have used a body number for title purposes, and a few states did, especially on things like Nashes that didn't have a frame, but old ways change slow.


Linking engines to bodies as standard practice was still about 15 years in the future when your car was made.


If you have a title that matches the engine, that really is as good as it gets here in the USA. Of course today we would prefer that they always used the frame number, or the body number if it was serial, but I think using the engine number was more common.


I would contact the California DMV (assuming it is a California title), and explain the situation. Maybe they can help. It may be tough now that the car is already in the Netherlands. Best regards.

Edited by Bloo (see edit history)
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I would suggest that the individual who sold the car to you should be able to provide a bill of sale that lists both the engine number and the frame number. Hopefully that would allow you to register the car. If you need to identify the frame number by something other than the number on the number plate affixed to the driver's door jamb, I suspect the frame number is also stamped in the frame. I have personal experience locating such a number on a 1954 Buick, but not on a 1953. It is probably in a similar location.

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On 11/25/2017 at 5:29 PM, MCHinson said:

 I suspect the frame number is also stamped in the frame. I have personal experience locating such a number on a 1954 Buick, but not on a 1953. It is probably in a similar location.


If it is it's likely on the top of the  left frame rail aft of the rear kick up. Pretty much impossible to see much less read without removing the body. Years of accumulated dirt      and rust on top of the number doesn't help.  It sounds like your registration bureau needs to be informed that in the 50's American car manufacturers used different methods of serializing their cars. Some used engine numbers, some body numbers sometimes they matched often they did not. In other words  requiring  the engine  "link" to the body is a fools errand. Good luck. Could be a long road ahead for you...................Bob

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