View Full Version : Frame Vin Missing First 1 or 2 Characters

07-01-2012, 11:52 AM
Greetings all. I bought a partial restoration a few months back knowing the vin tag on the A pillar had been lost. Per a post I saw here before I bought the car I knew the vin as stamped in the frame in 2 locations. I finally pulled the body today using an engine hoist and found the 2 locations the vin had been stamped in. My issue is both the vins start with 57B#######, there is no A,B,C,D preceding the build year, "V" marking is much less of a concern. I have had the 2 locations soaking in muriatic acid for over an hour and no extra character has appeared. Does anyone have an suggestion on what to do? Should I allow the locations to soak over night? What if the first/second characters were never stamped due to a factory error?


carls 56 (RIP 11/24/2021)
07-01-2012, 12:30 PM
i'm not sure you will find numbers in front of that 57 on the frame stamp. 57B means a 57 made in baltimore as you already know. saw on a show they sprinkled power on and took a magnifying glass to look at it after they dusted it off.

07-01-2012, 12:41 PM
Think that powder is called magnaflux...lik checking engine parts for cracking.

07-01-2012, 01:21 PM
no letters in front of the 57 on the frame...that's the way they made em.

07-01-2012, 02:42 PM
Thanks guys, that makes my day knowing that. One last question, how is the car designated between the various models then, such as 150, 210, Bel Air, & sedan delivery?

07-01-2012, 04:42 PM
Just to be sure, C57heaven is correct. The frame number begins with the year. No "V", or "A, B, or C".

07-01-2012, 05:41 PM
Thanks guys, that makes my day knowing that. One last question, how is the car designated between the various models then, such as 150, 210, Bel Air, & sedan delivery?

Hope this helps.



07-03-2012, 08:07 AM
I hope you can get by your DMV without a VIN tag. So many of the frames on these cars have been changed out that I'd be surprised if they allowed you to use that VIN in the first place. I assume you checked with them before you bought the car? Good luck!! ;)

07-19-2012, 02:40 PM
CNut has a point here.
Case in point: my nomad DOES have a VIN tag on the A pillar, and that will take precedent with our DMVs in California. But if it didn't have that or if for instance the car was stolen and the vin removed (once the car was recovered by law enforcement), they might shoot for plan B and check the VIN number on the frame.

My nomad has a different frame than what it was built with originally. The VIN # ain't gonna match. to keep a negative situation from happening, i'm going to smooth up the frame VIN before I paint the frame. If anything, I'll put the vin# from the A pillar on the frame before I paint it, in another location. probably illegal (technically)...

You really do need the VIN from the A pillar to get it registered, or your gonna have some work to do with your local DMV to convince them of what that car really is.

Busted Knuckles
01-06-2013, 08:39 PM
my 56 has a vin tag up on the cowl on the passengers side also is this normal

01-06-2013, 08:42 PM
Busted knuckles, that's not a VIN tag, it's a cowl tag. It only contains model, paint, and interior information and no VIN.

01-07-2013, 06:45 PM
I thought you said the frame was Baltimore. Frame could have been switched.
Two tags under hood sounds like a Canadian body.
just in case....
Canadian Cowl Tags and Serial Numbers;
57's came with two tags, but they were both small ones, usually found either side by side, or one above another on the firewall under the windshield wiper motor.