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Thread: One piece 1957 chevrolet frames are not california frames

  1. #1
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    One piece 1957 chevrolet frames are not california frames

    The one piece frames that Chevrolet made in 1957 for the passenger cars are not California frames. They are just supplied from a different Chevrolet plant. Many1957 Chevrolet cars built in the Oakland CA plant do not have one piece frames. Same goes for the Los Angeles plant. One piece bumper's are a California thing, in case of a crash, they needed to separate the cars fast and the one piece bumper's allows the car's not to get tangled together in the event of a crash. Domenic

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    Registered Member chevynut's Avatar
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    In the same way that certain substances are known only to the State of California to cause cancer.
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    Registered Member WagonCrazy's Avatar
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    One piece bumper's are a California thing, in case of a crash, they needed to separate the cars fast and the one piece bumper's allows the car's not to get tangled together in the event of a crash.
    That's a new one to me. Never heard that before. That explains why every 57 in the state of CA has ONLY 1 piece bumpers? (which they don't...)
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    Registered Member BamaNomad's Avatar
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    After hearing all the different stories for 40+ years about 'california frames', west coast bumpers, etc.. I believe that both frame and bumper difference are simply due to 'two different suppliers'...

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    Registered Member carls 56's Avatar
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    anything is possible. where did info come from Domenic? thanks for sharing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by chevynut View Post
    In the same way that certain substances are known only to the State of California to cause cancer.
    I agree 100%, FYI my KCMO built 56 has a one piece frame and my 55 from the land of nuts, fruits and flakes has a two piece.

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    John Chamber's told me about the one piece frames, I personally have seen California car's without one piece frames, between going to Hershey for over 40 year's, and being a car nut about these type of thing's. And I can't remember where i heard about the one piece bumper's being mandatory in California ,so they could separate the cars quickly in the event of a crash. It may have been John Chamber's or possibly a good friend of both John Chamber's and me John Skinner. Mr. Skinner was a AACA judge for 25 year's and was very Knowledgeable with the TRI-FIVE Chevrolet's. Mr. Skinner died this past December 2018 . When we lose the old timer's, we lose the knowledge. The reason seam's to make sense, where you have a lot of traffic and time is of the essence .
    Last edited by nomad; 02-05-2019 at 02:24 PM. Reason: more information

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    Registered Member Troy's Avatar
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    My '55 was born in Oakland Ca. and it doesn't have a one piece frame, but does have one piece bumpers.

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    Registered Member WagonCrazy's Avatar
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    The reason seam's to make sense, where you have a lot of traffic and time is of the essence .
    'Splain please Lucy...

    Alot of traffic? In 1957? California has 10x the traffic today. We don't untangle them. They just bounce off each other. Bwa ha ha.

    If your logic holds, then why was there was a 2 piece bumper on the 70 Camaro then?

    I think that by 1957, GM found a metal stamping process that would yield a 1 piece full front bumper, rather than a 3 piece bumper. Faster and Cheaper. With the popularity of that model year... maybe they couldn't keep up with the 3 piece bumper volume, and found multiple suppliers?
    Last edited by WagonCrazy; 02-05-2019 at 06:36 PM.
    1957 Nomad- LS1/T56 on C4 chassis
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    I don't think there's any doubt that one piece and two piece frames were simply two different suppliers, and that they were used interchangeably at all assembly plants. I've seen non-scientific poll results at the two other trifive forums showing that Norwood cars had a higher percentage of one piece frames than other assembly plants.

    On the bumpers, what I've read is the one piece bumpers were required for cars sold in CA. Also in Canada and some New England states. But cars were built in CA for delivery to other west coast states with 3 piece bumpers. My theory on that is that requirement was a throwback to earlier cars (maybe the 30s?) that was already outdated by the 50s but didn't get changed/dropped until later. If you think about it, most cars after 57 had the one piece bumper anyway, and the 70 RS/SS Camaro was a unique styling exception that may not have fit the rule anyway.

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