November '15

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122 The Shop November 2015 hoT Rod & CuSTomizaTion R estoring Chevrolet Corvettes is a good business. Corvettes are relatively easy to restore and there is a good market for restored Corvettes. It is not too difficult to remove a Corvette body, and fiberglass doesn't rust. The Corvette chassis is fairly robust and simple to work on. The availability of reproduction parts is very good. Vintage Corvettes sell regularly and many of them bring high prices. This adds up to a good return on investment for shops specializing in restoring Corvettes. On the other hand, repairing a 'Vette body does require a certain level of expertise in working with fiberglass. Some regular body shops will not work on Corvettes, period. If the car is a rare model that needs to be restored authentically for maximum value, a shop may have difficulties coming up with original factory parts. Shop owners joke that these are made of "un-obtanium." CORVETTE SPECIALISTS Corvettes are spoken of in terms of design "generations" such C1, C2 and C3. There are shops that spe- cialize in one generation such as the early C1 "straight axle" cars. Other shops focus on the "shark" cars of the late 1960s and early '70s. There is probably at least one specialist for each Corvette generation. Kevin Mackay of Corvette Repair Inc., ( is known for his very specialized efforts in tracking down famous Corvette racing cars and restoring them to sell to serious collectors. Other shops are known for building Corvette resto- mods. At Nickey Performance (www.nick- in St. Charles, Illinois, John Tinberg specializes in Corvette gassers. There are shops that specialize fantastic PlASTIC Shops can do well with 'vettes. By John Gunnell David Burroughs has meticulously restored Corvettes and now runs a service to authenticate the history of rare models. Corvette parts and accessories are easy to find. Mike Yager even supplies shopping carts to car owners attending his Corvette Funfest show.

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