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What is the judging standard of the AACA?


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Hello All, I am not an AACA member. I am a member of the Cadillac and Lasalle Club. Their judging standard to strive for is the condition and authenticity of the car the day it left the dealership. Awards are issued according to score; so there can be more than one first place. What is the judging standard of the AACA? Are awards issued according to score or only to the highest score? I am just curious. No controversy. 

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I suspect that CLC judging was designed based on AACA Judging. 

 

The General Policy of AACA Judging is:

 

"The objective of AACA judging is to evaluate an antique vehicle, which has been restored to the same state as the dealer could have prepared the vehicle for delivery to the customer. This includes any feature, option or accessory shown in the original factory catalog, parts book, sales literature, or company directives for the model year of the vehicle. AACA accepts motorized vehicles 25 years old or older, which were built in factories and specifically designed and manufactured for transportation use on public roadways and highways. The end result of the accurate and honest evaluation of a vehicle by a judging team will be the proper determination of the deserved award for the owner's efforts."

 

You can find the complete judging guidelines here:

 

https://aaca.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/02/AACA_2022_Judging_Guidelines.pdf

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After skimming through the AACA Judging Guidelines it seems there can be multiple first place awards at one time. I always wondered how judges in the AACA can have knowledge of authenticity of so many classes. Some cars are rare and there may not be a lot of people out there to judge who know what is correct for them. I have judged a few times for the Cadillac Club and even for one make it is hard to get judges who know all the authenticity details. 

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Yes Tom, there can be multiple first place awards at each show.  Here is the section in the AACA Judging Guidelines that explains the scores required to win the various awards.

 

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Thanks, Tim

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Tom, actually the owner is the "expert" in AACA judging. If there is a question, then the team captain asks the owner for factory documentation. This points to one of the reasons why our AACA's extensive Library is so important. 

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Posted (edited)

Phillip, thank you for your post. That answers my question. That is very interesting. Because the Cadillac and Lasalle Club is a one/two marque club, they have gone about that situation the opposite way. The Club publishes Authenticity Manuals for each class. These are written by volunteer club members who have experience with cars in that class. They use factory period published information as reference. This is a big help to restorers and judges. 

Edited by Tom Boehm (see edit history)
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Keep in mind to win the award you are seeking you need to be within 10 points of the best car seeking the same award.  So even if you only need 380 points for a first place if there is a perfect score car (400 points) you need 390 or more for a first

.

Edited by Avanti Bill (see edit history)
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Having shown a '59 Cadillac in both AACA and CLC it is obvious that CLC judging is much more "nit picky" and I mean that in a good way. If you want your car as perfect as it can be CLC is great judging. We were nicked in CLC judging for having our battery backwards in the battery holder. 

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Marque judging is much more intense and detailed.  However if you want perfection in your car you use those judging sheets as work orders and sooner than later you will have a perfect car.

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13 hours ago, ted sweet said:

i have aaca senior cars get distroyed in single margue judging were date codes and part numbers are checked

The above statement is certainly correct but I have seen it go the other way too. I've seen Corvettes that had NCRS badges not get their awards in AACA because of the different standards.

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While I am not a Corvette owner I find it impossible to believe that a National or Regional NCRS Top Flight car would not pass muster with AACA Judging.  If this happened something was definitely wrong.  I suppose it is possible for some Marque judging to allow radial tires on cars that did not come with them under the "safety modification" category but none that I belong to allow such changes. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

For more information to your questions you can also buy a copy of the AACA Judging Guidelines.  If you're a member of AACA you can come to one of our meets and attend a judging school and get one of those books for free.  I've had vehicles judged in marque clubs and I've had vehicles judged in AACA.  Truth be told I see advantages and disadvantages in both systems, but more often than not, if you can get through the marque club's judging, in most cases, you can walk through AACA.  Generally speaking, tires, light bulbs and grease fittings will cost you a lot points.  If you have an older car, bolts with grade marks and spark plugs that don't have the black base will also put a hurting on you.  On an older car you also want to make sure that you don't have any plastic wire or plastic wire connections on your wiring harness.  You can lose a ton of points by everything that I've mentioned for a car that could be otherwise perfect.

 

In several of the marque clubs you'll know your exact score and you can dispute points deductions.  In AACA they won't divulge your exact score, you can't dispute the points deductions but they're more lenient and they only have 10 minutes to judge your vehicle. 

 

When Early Ford V8 Club spent two hours and I got a score of 995 out of 1,000 points, I could've disputed their deductions, but in either case it was still a win and the judges worked hard to get the 5 points they took from me.  When I got to VIrginia Beach in May, the judges had 10 minutes to judge the truck, I knew it was correct, it was clean and I wasn't worried about it.  When we rolled out of Virginia Beach, the truck had won its' award.

 

 

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Edited by ex98thdrill (see edit history)
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With regard to the knowledge base of the judges, I am always amazed at the depth of knowledge that exists on the field.  Judges are placed on teams often based on their own request, which of course is based on their familiarity with particular vehicles.  Other judges prefer to gain experience on different vehicles.  It is a team effort and judges often learn from each other and wiork with their team captain closely when evaluating a vehicle.  AACA also offers "Continuing Judges Education (CJE) at each national event.  Subject matter experts and experienced judges provide instruction to others who wish to learn more about particular vehicles or even the process of judging.  Behind the scenes there is an administration team checking and double checking everything for accuracy.  They somehow manage to get all the "paperwork" done and entered into the data base and still have enough time left to freshen up for the evening banquet or BBQ where award are given out.  Recommend you join AACA and look at joining the judges on the field.  The Guidelines explain everything.   Hope to see you at Hershey.

Terry

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  • 2 months later...

So we are all Car buddies here, you help me ill help you!! 

Gary I just went thru this at fall hershey with so many questions and concerns , the folks in AACA are great my neighbors at the show whom were competing for the same awards ,and even the folks in a differant class behind me helped me so much, along  with a fellow I met decades ago on the CLC . PM me and I give you my cell to chat. Our car took a Junior at Hershey and I am excited about getting it to Gettys burg PA for the next show near me.

 

I do want to bring it to a Cadillac event and I can use all the advice I can get ,but there are none in resonable travel time till 2024 .Iam regret full as memebers of our local NNJ Cadillac club made the trip to the last national in  Chicago and I  did not . Iam  Looking forward to taking to you, I order the AACA judging guide and was lost. After entering my car in the Hershey show I now better understand the Judging guide. I compete in another venue, (not car related) and I am an  expert in that feild and when the folks ask me how to get started I  say the best way is to bring your gear  enter the match and all your questions will be answered as all of the Range officers and other compeditors will walk you thru the match . I took my own advice for Hershey and entered and learned as I went. I have a 1967 Deville Convertable I just recived my authenticity guide from the CLC and thankfully I have not found any great concerns on my car except for the Tires. I cannot find a corret 900-15  bias ply tire for my car and I have sent a request out to the Judging VP to ask for clairification on with the current availability of tires what will be my best  option to avaoid an 8 point deduct (I have the original spare) Rech out I love to talk cars 

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I would also recommend attending a Judging School at the next National you attend (always on the day before the show) or at the Annual Meeting in Williamsburg VA in February.  This two hour class will give you a better understanding of how AACA judging works on the field.

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3 hours ago, 61polara said:

I would also recommend attending a Judging School at the next National you attend (always on the day before the show) or at the Annual Meeting in Williamsburg VA in February.  This two hour class will give you a better understanding of how AACA judging works on the field.

This is a great recommendation.  At the Judging School, you also have the opportunity to ask questions to get a better understanding for what is needed.  To attend the Judging School, you do not need to judge at that meet. 

However, if you want to find out even more information, I would also recommend judging at that meet.  When you do judge, they offer Continuing Judges Education sessions the day of judging where you can take a special session on an array of subjects to learn even more.  

Tim

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22 hours ago, 61polara said:

I would also recommend attending a Judging School at the next National you attend (always on the day before the show) or at the Annual Meeting in Williamsburg VA in February.  This two hour class will give you a better understanding of how AACA judging works on the field.

And yes I am taking this advice also and look forward to the judging school and voulennteering to help out at the next shows I attend 

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