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Topic Review (Newest First)
02-22-2007 10:44 AM
Magnus_Jager Hmm so you would also have to deal with getting a title on a junked car for the 77. That may not even be possible depending on what the junk yard did. In NY if it was multi-listed (may not be right term. they bulk list all the vehicles on the yard) it can never be titled again. If they separately titled the vehicle it can be sold whole and registered. Looks like that is not case there or they would have had a flag on the VIN.

You will make life more difficult using the vin, and potentially make it less valuable, and possibly subject it to more emissions (don't know difference on 75, and 77).

I'd probably take whatever I can use, and put it in the 75. Keep the 75 titled as one. Make it look like your sister's. Maybe even recover the seats, etc. Then it is a part of BOTH of you not just hers.
02-22-2007 07:47 AM
KenCam I have a clean title for the 75.
I do not for the 77 (my sister's car). I did call the DMV to check it out before I pulled it out of the field and they said there was nothing flagged on the vin. I was told that the man who put the car in the field used parts from it for his race car and that he had picked it up from a junk yard.

There is nothing special about either of the cars as far as I know. They are both baseline Camaros. The 77 had a 305 and the 75 has a 350. The 75 is a #s matching car but nothing special.
02-22-2007 05:31 AM
Magnus_Jager I guess my basic question would be does this gain any value other than sentimental by switching the vins? Does the 77 have rare options? If it's more common the motivation for fraud is to a degree mitigated.

The honest bodyman, and his client had completely different reasons most likely.

The question is, "Is there an intent to defraud?"

You do have titles for both vehicles right?
02-21-2007 05:08 PM
xntrik I understand you motivation.

If you have both titles it is no big deal to show that the 75 is not stolen, etc. You could also prove this with an abandoned car title search through your sheriff if you don't have the title, and you could get one. They are both 30+ yrs old...

As I suggested you can apply either title VIN to the vehicle if done correctly.

You just want to CYA in case it comes up in the future.

Go for it!

You know if you changed one part at a time, sooner or later the entire car would be different. Like a 32 roadster.. is it or isn't it the original titled car?

If it were a crop dusting airplane, all they do is fly to the overhaul center, swap data plates and logbooks, and fly away in a new airplane with the old numbers on it. Yes it is legal.
02-21-2007 03:23 PM
KenCam I'd like to thank everyone for their insight.

I really don't want to break any laws and it would be nice to have an exempt car. (not that it is emissions laws are strongly enforced in KY) However, I really feel strongly about the car having the proper vin#. I wouldn't ever sell it. I probably wouldn't even drive it that often. I even plan on scaring my son into not selling it from beyond the grave.

I'm actually not sure how anyone would ever know, except you fine people. I mean I'm not talking about just changing the vin plate. The plan was to switch either the entire firewall or the top plate containing the vin tag, defrost vents, windshield wiper mounts... (I'm rambling and probably creating logic to justify what I want to do)

I still haven't had a chance to make any calls yet.
02-21-2007 12:13 PM
Originally Posted by paulo 1
As a honest and dedicated restorer,to me the main body is just another part.
Originally Posted by paulo 1
I am not in the States but it would be illegal here too.

Reminds me of a discussion on vette motor stamping from a while back...
02-21-2007 11:33 AM
OneMoreTime I agree with Ponch and Farna..I woudl build the 75 in honor of my sister..paint it and detail it like the 77 was..and do the dash plaques deal..

In the veterans area we do this to commemorate a fellow that was lost..

02-21-2007 10:35 AM
farna I agree with the last statement. Build a replica of your sisters car using the 75 and whatever parts you can from the 77. There isn't much point in transferring the VIN plate if you have the title for the 75. If you did use the 77 VIN plate once you apply for a title it will have your name on it.

You'd be better off to make a plaque with the 77 VIN and title (if you have it -- should still have your sister's name on it?) or a photo of your sister and/or the original car, and a plate saying it's a replica built to honor your sister's memory. The VIN and title won't matter in any case -- no one remembers that the VIN was hers, they remember the car itself. If it looks like her car and people recall it, that's all that matters.

As far as legality... if you own both cars, and you're not doing the swap to circumvent some kind of law (such as emissions -- if 75 is exempt and 77 isn't, you'd have a hard time convincing a cop/judge that wasn't your intent...) or sell a stolen car, I'd do it without saying a word to anyone. Someone has to have reason to complain and bring charges. The only way that might happen is if you're involved in a wreck. The insurance company could claim the car was illegally operated and therefore your policy is invalid. But they would have to know about or have reason to suspect the swap.
02-21-2007 08:47 AM
poncho62 If the 75 is better and you have a title, it only makes sense to go with it...I know the sentimental attachment is there, but you can put as much of your sisters car on the 75 as you can....Only you will know the difference.
02-21-2007 08:16 AM
KenCam I know what I'm doing is a bit crazy. The body of the 75 is pretty nice (except around the back glass) and I have the title for it. My sisters 77 is a complete disaster and I don't have the title. The 77's body is way too far gone. If I were to rebuild it (not that I have the knowledge to do so) I would end up with pretty much everything new except the firewall. I thought switching them would be an easier solution. Especially since I was going to have to buy a parts car anyway.

I'll try and call about it today.

Hey paulo1, I was under the impression that there is a vin# on the front frame. I haven't found it yet but mine is covered in undercoat and rust. I could be wrong.
02-20-2007 06:07 PM
paulo 1 I just swapped VINs between 2 Camaros.One of those cases where the main body on one was so much better that economically it was the intelligent thing to do.Both cars belonged to the same client.Actually 3 Camaros.We made 1 out of 3.And to tell you the truth,I do not fell bad at all.As a honest and dedicated restorer,to me the main body is just another part.In this particular car the whole dash can be unbolted and transplanted.I am not in the States but it would be illegal here too.And these cars do not have VIN codes stamped elsewhere.
02-20-2007 04:08 PM
poncho62 Which body are you using?

That is what I would be going by............the firewall is only a small part of the main body.
02-20-2007 03:56 PM
xntrik QUOTE

....replace the VIN tag if such removal and replacement " reasonably necessary for the repair...".


There's the phrase. REASONABLY NECESSARY.

Can you take the plate out of squashed car and weld it into a good car of a different year?........ mmmmmmm?

Please post back on this thread and let us know what you find out. I am curious about KY.

Down here you have to have both titles and submit them to the state for retitling as one vehicle.
02-20-2007 03:41 PM
KenCam Thanks for the info!
I will still call the KY HP to get more info but you have set my mind at ease.
02-20-2007 03:35 PM
Originally Posted by KenCam
It will be as close as I can make it.

Thanks for the reply. I will make the call.
Contrary to popular belief, it is NOT illegal under Federal law to swap a VIN tag if you are either the owner or a repair shop and the VIN tag movement is reasonably required for a repair (and of course you need to legally own all the parts you're swapping). The applicable federal law is Title 18 of United States Code, Chapter 25, Section 511. You can read it for yourself here:

There are a lot of double and triple negatives in the text, but the bottom line is that it is illegal to swap VIN plates with the intent to commit fraud. The legal owner of the vehicle or a designated repair shop IS allowed to remove and replace the VIN tag if such removal and replacement " reasonably necessary for the repair...". I had a long talk with the vendor selling the repro Camaro bodies at Carlisle last summer and as a business owner you can bet he has had his lawyer research this in detail.

Think about it this way. Say you own a brand new GM pickup and a tree falls on the cab. You can run down to the GM dealer and buy a brand new body-in-white cab. This new cab does not come with a VIN tag - you must swap the one from your old crushed cab. One caveat is that state law may override federal in this instance, so be sure you know the requirements in your specific state.
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