Author Topic: Jan's 1958 Corvette  (Read 169 times)

Surfermike

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Jan's 1958 Corvette
« on: March 20, 2018, 09:41:13 am »
There is one slight correction I'd like to address in Mark's book pertaining to Jan's 1958 Corvette that he sold to Jim Blanchard in August 1963. It was advertised as a black hdtp (hardtop). Starting with the first generation of Corvettes, 1953-1962, all were convertibles. In 1956, the first auxiliary hardtop was offered as an option. This meant that the owner would fold down the soft top under the back deck lid, and then attach, or bolt on this hardtop. Since it was the same color of the car body, it looked like one complete car. Usually in the summer, the hardtop was removed and stored away. Now your car was back with a choice of you keeping the folding top up or hidden down for nice weather driving. The car was never converted to a soft top - it always had one. In Jan's ad, hdtp meant his black Corvette came with the optional hardtop. Sting Rays of 1963 -1967 gave you a choice of convertible, also with an optional hardtop, or a coupe (one piece body) that both J&D had.

Mark A. Moore

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Re: Jan's 1958 Corvette
« Reply #1 on: March 20, 2018, 02:27:22 pm »
Right, but Jim damaged the hardtop with a body sander in 1972. The paint had begun to blister and he went too far with the sander. So around 1978 he purchased and installed the complete hardware for a soft-top. "The holes for this top had never been drilled behind the seats, but I felt justified in adding it as my personal comfort was involved."

The car was originally white with red interior. After it was damaged in the Bel Air Fire of '61, Jan had it refurbished and painted black.

Jim began restoring it in 1980. He saved the hardtop with multiple layers of gel coat and block sanding. He painted the car red with white fender coves.

Surfermike

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Re: Jan's 1958 Corvette
« Reply #2 on: March 23, 2018, 09:30:04 am »
Thanks for your reply Mark. I can't believe the amount of work Jim did to make Jan's car look stunning. Restorers put a lot of effort into restoring old Corvettes by using original or reproduction parts usually down to the correct nuts and bolts. Jim started this resto work before it became very popular. Not many people wanted an old 1958 Corvette then. Especially if it needed a lot of work! One thing I would like to ask Jim if he's reading this, why didn't you go back to the original color of the car? Yes, the red looks beautiful, but most restorers try to keep their cars like it came out of the show room. I'm happy that Jan got to see his car again after Jim finished it. Where are all of the rest of Jan & Dean's Corvettes? I'd love to know who's driving them now.