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Value and VIN

Old 11-20-2018, 04:17 PM
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Randy G.
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Default Value and VIN

A friend of mine has a C1 Corvette he purchased from an estate sale 3 years ago. The VIN on the title is screwed up, meaning it isn't a Corvette VIN but it has the right year and car in the title description. He hasn't been to the DMV yet to transfer title to his name, which could get sticky because it hasn't been registered in years and there is no VIN tag with the car. He may end up with a reassigned VIN tag sticker from the state in order to properly register it rather than an actual Corvette VIN plate I suppose. I'm going to crawl under it to see if I can read the VIN on the frame, but I already know it won't match the title.

He wants to make a restomod out of it with an aftermarket frame and an LS drivetrain, and he has the funds to do whatever he wants. My question is, should he look for a car with the correct title and a Corvette VIN tag or go ahead and do whatever it takes to title what he has and drop six figures into it? If it were me I would want a clean title car to start with. He's less concerned. My concern would be the ability to sell it at one of the auctions because they take title issues very seriously, and I would be concerned that there would be a major hit on the value.



.

What would you recommend? He likes the car, and it has great bones to start the project.

Last edited by Randy G.; 11-20-2018 at 04:18 PM.
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Old 11-20-2018, 04:27 PM
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BamaZR1
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I would check the frame VIN before I decided what to do with that car. Unless the frame is really rusty, you should be able to read it using a mirror and flashlight (after a little cleaning of the right spot).... I've even photographed frame VINs with this approach.

Last edited by BamaZR1; 11-20-2018 at 04:28 PM.
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Old 11-20-2018, 04:37 PM
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65GGvert
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What year is it, and what does "screwed up" mean?
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Old 11-20-2018, 05:01 PM
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Be careful when you find out the real vin#. If you tell the DMV and it comes back as stolen, duplicated, or something he risks losing the car. Many of these old cars have dubious pasts.
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Old 11-20-2018, 05:10 PM
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hope2
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Good chance someone is missing that C1. No one swaps VIN's for ***** and giggles. Got involved with a situation like that with a 67 435hp car. Had a Nova vin tag. Long story short, car was stolen 20 years ago and sat in basement of guy who had possession. FBI got involved, ugly.

Last edited by hope2; 11-20-2018 at 05:13 PM.
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Old 11-20-2018, 05:36 PM
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AZDoug
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To my knowledge, In CA, making a restomod has its own perils, it very well may get title with the year of build, or the engine year of manufacture if there is no VIN tag and screwed up title..
Emissions will also come into play.

All said and done, if you don't know the car is legit, i would build it first, get rid of the original frame and take it from there to get a CA assigned VIN, which he will get anyway. Tale plenty of pics during teh build, it makes it easier to get a VIN assigned. CA willw anta ll teh receipts so they know how much to screw him over on when he registers it.
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Old 11-20-2018, 06:14 PM
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Why not just return the car to the executor of the estate and start over?
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Old 11-20-2018, 06:21 PM
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Is he in California? If so, he's gonna get hit with penalties for not registering this sooner.

My take is that he will likely end up with a state-applied VIN. I don't think that matters so much on a resto-mod, as long as the car continues to be registered as an old car. It's only a problem in my mind if it gets registered as an SPCNS 2018, due to the various safety and smog issues that states usually ignore on older cars.

If I were him, I'd try to register it now, and only after getting it successfully registered as a real car would I then start the resto-mod work.


Originally Posted by desertpilgrim
Why not just return the car to the executor of the estate and start over?
I'd think the estate has probably been probated or otherwise closed by now.

Last edited by Duck916; 11-20-2018 at 06:22 PM.
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Old 11-20-2018, 06:23 PM
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Originally Posted by AZDoug View Post
To my knowledge, In CA, making a restomod has its own perils, it very well may get title with the year of build, or the engine year of manufacture if there is no VIN tag and screwed up title..
Emissions will also come into play.

All said and done, if you don't know the car is legit, i would build it first, get rid of the original frame and take it from there to get a CA assigned VIN, which he will get anyway. Tale plenty of pics during teh build, it makes it easier to get a VIN assigned. CA willw anta ll teh receipts so they know how much to screw him over on when he registers it.
Doug
This is a very good point. In CA, it has become very difficult to register a new build as an 'old' car without proper documentation (factory VIN number installed). There is a chance that the car could be built as a resto-mod with aftermarket everything except the body, and would have to be titled as a 2018 or 2019 model (completion date of build) and therefore, have to comply with emissions regulations for a late-model vehicle. Much safer in the long run to start with a car with an intact original VIN, even in bad shape. No emissions hassles and no hassles at time of resale, either. It will still be titled as the same car is was when new, decades ago.
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Old 11-20-2018, 06:30 PM
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Dan Hampton
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Seek the advice of an attorney.
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Old 11-20-2018, 07:01 PM
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If I'm reading your post correctly, the title has a vin number but the car does not have a vin plate on it to match title. If you had a vin plate to put on car which matched the title, no problem. So, you know what to do, right.
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Old 11-20-2018, 08:19 PM
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65 Pro Vette
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Is the title at least a Corvette’s title? Was it just a number or letter off from being a Corvette’s title? There are a lot of titles out there that the S for St. Louis is a five by mistake that’s an easy fix. If it’s not a corvette title he has problems.
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Old 11-20-2018, 08:19 PM
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68hemi
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DO NOT involve the DMV until YOU have your ducks in a row.
Start by finding the hidden V.I.N. on the car. With this info CALL state law enforcement and tell them that you are looking at purchasing a car that has no title and ask them to see if they have any record of the car ever being stolen. If you get an all clear on that then contact the people that make reproduction V.I.N. tags and see what their policy is for creating a new tag with the info they require. Once you have the new tag installed take your paperwork to a DMV office (AZ is a bordering state for the OP and does not have all of the penalties for not being register for so long) get a title in your name and then you can transfer it to you home state if you like.
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Old 11-20-2018, 08:26 PM
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65hihp
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This looks like advice from a car salesman, not an attorney.
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Old 11-20-2018, 09:27 PM
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If you'll answer my earlier questions, we can work on it. What year, and how is the Vin on the title "screwed up"?
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Old 11-20-2018, 09:32 PM
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68hemi
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Originally Posted by 65hihp View Post
This looks like advice from a car salesman, not an attorney.
Indeed it is.

I spent most of my life in the car business and have seen every title/V.I.N. problem there is to see.

If you don't know what the situation is with the car you first have to determine if it is indeed yours.

Then unless you want to suffer the financial hit you will take on the car if you let the state issue a V.I.N. for the car I suggest you follow my suggestions.
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Old 11-20-2018, 09:38 PM
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Robert61
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I registered mine as soon as I got it. There's is no way no how I would spend restomod money on a questionable title. Nor would I make or have made a fake, duplicate vin tag. There is a current thread about auctions where one of CF's more informed members says the auction houses are getting tougher on vin plates. That's just me.
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Old 11-20-2018, 09:44 PM
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desertpilgrim
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Originally Posted by Duck916 View Post
Is he in California? If so, he's gonna get hit with penalties for not registering this sooner.

My take is that he will likely end up with a state-applied VIN. I don't think that matters so much on a resto-mod, as long as the car continues to be registered as an old car. It's only a problem in my mind if it gets registered as an SPCNS 2018, due to the various safety and smog issues that states usually ignore on older cars.

If I were him, I'd try to register it now, and only after getting it successfully registered as a real car would I then start the resto-mod work.




I'd think the estate has probably been probated or otherwise closed by now.
The sale was made while under the supervision of the probate court - bad VIN =s bad sale; void it and get out of this $$$$ pit now.
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Old 11-20-2018, 09:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Duck916 View Post
Is he in California? If so, he's gonna get hit with penalties for not registering this sooner.
I don't doubt ANY silly law that someone says CA has, but how can this be a problem? For example, what if you were a baller with a fancy mansion, and the car sat in the huge living room as a conversation piece for many years? How can the state penalize you for not getting tags when it's not even on the road?
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Old 11-20-2018, 10:02 PM
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68hemi
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Originally Posted by 65GGvert View Post
If you'll answer my earlier questions, we can work on it. What year, and how is the Vin on the title "screwed up"?
QUOTE FROM THE 1ST POST
" The VIN on the title is screwed up, meaning it isn't a Corvette VIN but it has the right year and car in the title description." AND there is no VIN tag with the car.

I would say that the title is screwed up but generally not to the DMV unless it doesn't match the V.I.N. tag. Most of the people at DMV offices are pretty clueless about these things unless there is a red flag. They don't check to see what an old Corvette V.I.N. should be unless there are other questions. So, with this car not having a V.I.N. plate they are definitely going to have a problem with this car. Before you go to the DMV you better have a V.I.N. tag on the car to match the title unless you want to end up with a state issued V.I.N. and that will be after more BS which could include a bonded title and a long waiting period. This is at best because if they determine the car was stolen and still has a cloud of ownership the current owner is going to lose the car.

The car will require a new title from one of the states that offers this service first, then a new tag and all of this only if the car has never been reported stolen in which case I would want nothing to do with the car. The current owner should have check that before he bought a car without a V.I.N. tag.

Regarding another post here about "getting a fake V.I.N. plate, It would not be a fake but rather an original type REPLACEMENT tag. The people that make them are scrutinized by federal law and will require the correct paper work from the state it is going to be issued in.
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