Corvette Central

Concept 57 - Trim

A '57 WITH ALL THE TRIMMINGS - Putting the Shiny Stuff On P-57
When we started with the brand new Concept '57 body by Corvette Central, we were several steps ahead simply because we didn't need to restore the body. We only needed to ready it for paint.
Paint is one of those items on a car that, while it's paper-thin when applied on the body, if the surface underneath the paint isn't properly prepared, the paint's appearance can go from stellar to stagnant in a heartbeat. Not only does the surface need to be ready but also the body panels need to fit properly to prevent paint chips and scrapes at the seams. Another aspect that is often overlooked is fitting all the required trim onto the vehicle BEFORE the paint is applied so that any necessary corrections can be made without having to re-do the painting process. It's much cheaper to make a change before the shiny surface is applied.
P-57 is currently at the stage of fitting all the required chrome trim and other necessities onto the body so that any corrections that must be made will be apparent now rather than later. Many of the trim parts are available through Corvette Central as their Exterior Trim Package (PN 750058), which not only supplies you with many of the necessary parts while ordering only one part number but you also save money purchasing them as a package!
The guys at Walden & Younger Corvette Restorations have been hard at work fitting all the body panels, chrome trim and various brightwork so that when P-57 goes to the spray booth, what's under that shimmering Onyx Black paint is as solid and smooth as it appears and will stay that way for years to come.
1. The gas tank opening required some sanding to make the tank slide in and out com­fortably, but now is the time to do the modifications. The original-style cover provided with the body will make this area look great once it's been painted.

2. Quanta supplied the fuel tank for P-57 and then it was modified to allow for the
newer fuel injection on our LS6 engine by Rock Valley. They installed the in-tank pump assembly with a line out and a vent line for the fuel injection.

3. After fitting all the body panels like the doors, hood and rear deck lid, it was time to start installing the trim. Since we didn't have a donor car to pick parts from, all our
pieces had to be purchased. This can be quite expensive, but if time is on your side, you should be able to find usable examples at the larger Corvette swap meets.

4 One of the styling cues found only on the '56 and '57 Corvettes are these fender scoops. Corvette Central is now offering these for both fenders and appear to be correct replacements. They are also included in the Exterior Trim Package.
5 Drilling all the necessary holes before painting will ensure that the repairs will be much easier should the drill bit slip or the holes need any adjustment after installation. While it takes a little more time to trial fit everything, in the end, it will make for on easier project.
6. One of the nice things about Corvette Central's '57 body is that the original pieces will work just like an original '57. While the wiring for the car will be done at a later date, drilling the holes for the courtesy light switches is, like everything else, best done before paint covers everything.
Exterior Trim Package Includes:
2 - 441108
1956-1957 Headlight Ring
2 - 201101
1956-1957 Front Crescent Bumper
L - 281030
1956-1958E LH Door End Cap without Hole
R - 281030
1956-1958E RH Door End Cap without Hole
Pair - 431036
1957L-1958 Hardtop Receiver Molding
2 - 291208
1957-1960 Side Flag Emblem (Show Quality)
2 - 491100
1956-1957 Tail Lamp Assembly
1956-1957 Rear Exhaust Chrome with Insulation
1956-1957 License Lamp Assembled with Fasteners
L - 201120
1956- 1957 LH Rear Inner Horizontal Bumper
R - 201120
1956-1957 RH Rear Inner Horizontal Bumper
1956-1961 Side Molding Mount Kit with Nut & Washer
2 - 291101
1956-1 957 Front/Rear Emblem
2 - 291102
1 956-1 957 Front/Rear Emblem Bezel
2 - 651005
1953-1957 Wiper Arm Chrome Spacer
1956-1962 Door Handle Assembly
2 - 441002
1956-1 957 Headlight Bucket
1953-1657 Grille Oval
1953-1957 Grille Oval Mount Retainer Plate
1953-1957 US Mode Grille Teeth with Mounting Hardware
1953-1 957 Grille Bar
1953-1 957 Grille Mounting Bracket
2 - 491090
1953-1957 Parking Lamp Housing with Wire and Brocket
2 - 491095
1953-1 957 Parking Lamp Lens Bezel
1953-1957 Parking Lamp Bezel Barrel Nut
2 - 491097
1953-1962 Parking Lamp Lens with Gasket      
1953-1957 Parking Lamp to Body Gasket
2 - 201106
1953-1957 Front License Bumperette  
1953-1957 Front License Bar Guide Stamped
1953-1957 Front License Bumperette Bolt 
1953-1957 Front License Bumperette Support U Bracket
1956-1962 Window Front Felt Runner with Stitching
1956-1962 Front Window Running Mount
1956-1967 Rear Window Runner Liner
Door Outer Reveal Molding Mount
1956-1957 Wheel Well Molding
L - 331125
1956-1957 LH Upper Fender Side Chrome Molding
R - 331125
1956-1957 RH Upper Fender Side Chrome Molding
1956-1961 Side Molding Ton Door
L - 331231
1956-1961 LH Lower Fender Side Chrome Molding
R - 331231
1956-1961 RH Lower Fender Chrome Molding
L - 331232
1956-1961 LH Upper Door Side Chrome Molding
R - 331232
1956-1961 RH Upper Door Side Chrome Molding
L - 331233
1956-1961 LH Lower Door Side Chrome Molding   
R - 331233
1956-1961 RH Lower Door Side Chrome Molding
1953-1957 Front License Bumperette Support Tube
Inner and Outer Deluxe Garnish Molding

7 Charles Younger is installing the cove trim included in the trim package from Corvette Central.

8 Everything on the rear of P-57 is included in the trim kit. The exhaust chrome, taillights, bumpers and Corvette emblem are oil standard for a '56 or '57 and P-57 will also wear a set of Fuel Injection emblems even though the fuelie unit on our car is only a year or so old.
9 Marking out and drilling for the vertical bumpers is much easier (and less nerve wracking) if done before painting.

10 The grille is supplied in the kit but must be assembled. The kit also contains the oval that surrounds the opening and the grille mounting kit necessary to install the grille.

11 You will have to cut openings for the door latches and the lock mechanisms on the doors and the trunk. Corvette Central offers correct lock sets that are keyed alike for the trunk, glovebox and doors with the correct keys included.

12 We needed to locate a windshield frame since there is none currently available in the aftermarket. We purchased ours from Grossmueller's Classic Corvettes but if you already have a frame, Corvette Central can repair broken tabs at the mounting points and they also have correct, dated windshields or, you can opt for a tinted unit like we installed in P-57.

13 As more of the trim work was installed, P-57 really started to look more like a car. With the dash and the Stuart Warner gauges installed, the cockpit is starting to look inviting!

14 Part of the body panel alignment process is to adjust all the latches and to ensure that items like the hood and doors will operate properly once the vehicle is painted. Also, you can see the new styled hinges that we opted to use on P-57. They are stronger than the originals, but a hole needs to be made for their installation. The '57's body is manufactured to accept the original style if you prefer.
15 With all the trim fitted, P-57 is standing tall and proud. Now it's time to go back into the shop and take it all back off, but at least we'll know that when it comes time to install it all after painting, it'll fit!

16 We caught P-57 owner Henry Younger sitting behind the wheel making engine noises, anticipating the day he can finally drive P-57. We let him get out and regain his composure before we snapped the photo.

Thanks to Corvette Enthusiast - Written by: Andy Bolig / Photography by: Walden & Young Corvette Restoration
Copyright 2006