Tom P 1988 Chevrolet Corvette 35th Anniversary 2dr Coupe

We can fix it!

My story starts out with my first Corvette a 2000 Convertible. I am hooked. To say I became an instant convert was an understatement. My family knows how much I love my Corvette so one day my brother calls me to say he has found the perfect project car for us to work on together a 1988 35th Anniversary Corvette. He said I found it in Autotrader magazine it has some damage to the front but we can fix it and the best part is it only has 1,900 original miles. I said give him a call and see if he still has it and if he does arrange a time for us to go and take a look at it. He calls back and says what are you doing on Saturday. I said probably going to look at a Corvette right! We drive from my home in Southwick Ma to Quincy Ma about a 1:45 hour drive. The car is in an industrial building under a tarp. We pull the tarp away to see what looks like a brand new car except for the fact that it has t-boned a small pole dead nuts in the center of the front license plate. We look to see if the motor was also hit and it wasn't. That probably would have been a deal breaker for me. We look the whole thing over and ask the owner the story. He proceeds to tell us that he bought the car several years earlier from a nurse who had moved from Houston Tx to work in Boston. She needed a car she could drive all year round so she sold the Corvette. This gentleman didn't register the car right away as he was very busy building his business and the car sat for a couple of more years in his shop. One day he decides to take it out and go for a ride. He is leaving his friends house and gets on it and loses control and hits a sign pole. The car sat for several years while he decided if he was going to fix it or sell it. In the end he decided to sell it. We got the car loaded on a flat bed and hauled back to my garage. When we started disassembling the car we realized there was a lot of hidden damage we did not see. I took the car after it was disassembled to the Chevrolet Dealer in town and he put it on the frame machine to weld on new front frame extensions and sure everything was perfectly straight. It took me about a year to get all the parts since I was pretty fussy about using used parts. The car was essentially like new so only like new parts were going on it. That made the job of sourcing parts 10 times harder. There was one part that was not available anywhere on the planet, the front bumper moulding. It is white and only used on the 35th Anniversary Edition Corvette. After searching every site on the internet, including E-Bay it simply was not to be found. I was advised to buy a black one and paint it white. I said no way. I'll wait until I find one somewhere. Well as luck would have it I am walking around the swap meet at Corvettes at Carlisle and out of the corner of my eye I spot something long and white protruding from a cardboard box. I make my way over to the box and eureka there are 6 of them in the box. I pull out two of the best ones and walk over to the guy under the tent and asked how much for these two. I figure I'm buying a spare. He looks at me astonishingly and said where did you get those? I tell him there is a box of them over on the lawn. He proceeds to tell me how rare these are and tells me he didn't even know he had any left. Seems he had bought them years ago when black ones were unavailable so he could paint them black and finish cars. Since they were so rare the price was 5 times what you could buy a black one for so I went home with just the one I needed. I found a brand new GM hood at a Cadillac dealer in Houston, I found a new front hood emblem (only used on the 35th Anniversary Edition) on Ebay and paid way too much! Once I had all the parts I decided that the only way to make it all look perfect was to paint the entire car. My son-in-law owned a body shop and his dad was an expert painter so I had the car sent to them to be fully disassembled and painted. It had to look original and like a car with only 1,900 miles on it. As you can see in the picture it came out awesome. It has about 3,600 miles on it now and I only drive it to local car shows. Chevrolet only made 2050 of these and mine is number 1644. I have a 2006 Z06 which I love too but this car fits me like a glove!

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