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View Full Version : VIN laws, welding in original VIN to repair panel?



sigtauenus
07-10-2006, 08:35 AM
Hi guys,
Any advice on how to manage a patch panel repair involving the VIN number? I'm talking 68 Mustang here. The official VIN is on the dash just inside the windshield, riveted in place, but there is another stamped on the fender apron you can see with the hood raised. If I cut out the fender apron and replace it, can I butt weld in a small square that includes the original VIN? Since the VIN is also located on the dash there would be no discrepancies as they would match. This is legitimate, ie, no hanky panky changing VIN from one car to another.

I am located in VA, and have been unable to find anything about this at VA's DMV website.

Blaze9t8
07-10-2006, 12:02 PM
I did a '66 Mustang and was able to work around the vin stamping on the inner panel. Don't remember what I all replaced but it worked out that the vin stayed in the factory position.

SamG
07-10-2006, 08:37 PM
While that is not the 'legal' VIN...moving in to the replacement panel could still be frowned upon. Dont get me wrong, It happens every day in restoration shops all across the country. Heck, dynacorn is selling replacement Camaro bodies and calling them 'repair panels' so you can transfer your VIN legally (as long as you have permission from your DMV of course ;^)

However...if you could replace the panel without ever removing the section from the car...who could ever fault you? In other words, replace the entire panel EXCEPT the flat piece that the fender bolts. Maybe butt weld the new piece in right on the (almost) 90 degree bend where the apron turns down into the engine compartment. I wouldn't hesitate to do the repair that way...the VIN never left the car...I repaired/replaced the metal around it.

There's certainly ways to work around your dilemma.

Len
07-10-2006, 09:21 PM
Excuse me for hijacking this thread but someone asked about 3M Bristle Disks the other day and I remembered you used them but I forgot what you said about them. Check out the thread HERE (http://autobodystore.com/forum/showthread.php?p=13469#post13469). I would have quoted you only I forgot what you said :confused: I think it's an age thing.

55chevrolet
07-11-2006, 04:43 PM
I had this very situation a few years ago. I contacted the Ohio State Patrol and was directed to an inspection center a few miles down the road. For $50 they offered to reinstalled the vin tag AFTER a through inspection including examining the hidden vins(and filling out the needed documents). I never had to got hat route, but was relieved to know the was a process for this.

I'm sure every state has a similar program. They all have to deal with rebuilds and home built cars.

strokedpony
09-07-2007, 01:08 AM
I have a 68 Stang as well and I am also replacing the left front innner fender your talking about. I am going to cut out the old vin for myself, but i am stamping the VIN on the new inner fender myself. You can get a metal stamping kit from Harbor Freight for about ten bucks and it will pass for the original as long as you stamp the characters strait. You can also cut out the old vin and scribe your new inner fender and weld it in. To my knowledge Va does not check for this VIN. Do you have your Va. Title? If so, there is nothing to worry about because they have no reason to check it. They did not look at my car when I transferred the title and got plates. No worries.

Jay H 237
09-11-2007, 07:25 PM
I have a 68 Stang as well and I am also replacing the left front innner fender your talking about. I am going to cut out the old vin for myself, but i am stamping the VIN on the new inner fender myself. You can get a metal stamping kit from Harbor Freight for about ten bucks and it will pass for the original as long as you stamp the characters strait. You can also cut out the old vin and scribe your new inner fender and weld it in. To my knowledge Va does not check for this VIN. Do you have your Va. Title? If so, there is nothing to worry about because they have no reason to check it. They did not look at my car when I transferred the title and got plates. No worries.

This is the same thing I'll be doing with the VIN that was on the inner apron on my 68 Mustang. The top of the original inner fender where the VIN was wasn't easily salvagable so I replaced the complete panel with a repro and didn't save the old. I got the stamps from MSC, including the special character used at the beginning and end of the VIN so it will look original.

Although I'm not saying anything to the DMV (with some of the individuals there the less they know the better) it is legal here in CT to remove and replace/restamp the VIN for "repair and restoration work". It is illegal to move the VIN from one vehicle to another (rebody) but I'm reinstalling/restamping the original VIN back into the original car.

SHOWCAR FINISH
09-12-2007, 02:09 AM
I don't think anyone has ever even checked the vin on my dash, but I did buy from the dealer and it's a 2001. I don't understand the point of all this. Is this for restoration purposes or theft issues??? I guess for restoration it makes total sense. Just trying to figure out why.

Lost in NJ
09-12-2007, 06:53 PM
Easy answer.

The only legal VIN on the 68 Mustang is the one riveted to the dash. All the others are just decoration. If you touch the one on the dash you need whatever from your state to keep them happy. Most guys dont bother as it is just too much hassle and they only care if there is a 'problem'.

Keep in mind that hot rod guys are doing something very illegal in most states. They are legally building a new car out of parts. They can not legally use the original title. All the police I have talked to have no clue about titles and vin laws.

Incidentally, the 65-67 Mustangs have the legal vin on the drivers side inner fender. The other stampings were just done because they could and are inconsistent. Some cars have several stampings all over and others just have the one.

They have also messed up the Mustang vins. I had one early (oct 67) 68 Mustang that was 100% original including the build sheet. The right most digit was a 4 instead of a 9 and the title and door showed a 9. This car did not have a vin on the dash and all the numbers matched an Oct 67 build. I have also seen a 66 factory 6 cyl with a C code on the fender and a T on the door. In one of the mustang magazines they interviewed a factory worker. He said one day he accidentally marked 6 cars with the same vin.

Then there was the police officer. He came to my house with a curiosity. His 68 mustang conv has a lot of 67 features like the side scoops and interior. The door data plate, which is mark as not a legal vin, was correct for a the 68 title it was registered with. The legal 67 vin was on the inner fender. It seems someone switched some parts off a 68 to which they had the title and registered it. I never heard what happened to the car. He never reveled if he ran the 67 vin on the inner fender.

Personally I would not try to restamp. I would cut out the old vin and weld it in. You will never get the stamping right and it will be obvious. The exact correct stamps are not easy to find.

56Ford
09-12-2007, 07:34 PM
Like these guys who have a '31 Model A Coupe street rod with a new frame, glass body etc... and they title it as a '31....

I don't see how they could. legally..... as the motor number is the "VIN" and it's stamped on the original frame and original engine.- which these seldom match since motors got changed out often.

I would NOT attempt to restamp... it's very obvious to a person 'in the know'

In FL you can restamp the original number-- but it has to be done in the presence of law enforcement.

SHOWCAR FINISH
09-12-2007, 11:35 PM
Thanks guys.