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  • Body / Glass: License Plate Restoration

    License plates on my Lark are looking somewhat tatty.
    Any recommendations for someone who performs license plate restoration service?
    sigpic1957 Packard Clipper Country Sedan

    "There's nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer"
    Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle
    "I have a great memory for forgetting things" Number 1 son, Lee Chan

  • #2
    Be aware that restored plates are illegal in at least some states.
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
    Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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    • #3
      I’m sure it’s also illegal in NJ. In NJ you can get your current license plates reproduced by the state for a reasonable fee. And I would consider that but...the new plates being issued now are not embossed, they are printed. Call me old fashioned but I think the new plates are terrible looking.
      I suppose they switched to the flat printed plate so the license plate readers / scanners the police and DMV use can read the characters easier.
      sigpic1957 Packard Clipper Country Sedan

      "There's nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer"
      Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle
      "I have a great memory for forgetting things" Number 1 son, Lee Chan

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by 57pack View Post
        License plates on my Lark are looking somewhat tatty.
        Any recommendations for someone who performs license plate restoration service?
        Are you referring to your regular state-issued plate or a special plate not tied to taxation. In Indiana, for example, we have only one state plate on the rear and that can be had with a myriad of special so-called non profit support plates. We now even have one for the Studebaker Museum. Just about anything goes on the front as long as it's not deemed improper. I have a restored 1950 Indiana plate right now and also have one from my home state of Wyoming. That's a 1950. The later was in mint condition but i had the Indiana plate air brushed by a talented friend. I understand that in California you can get a vintage plate of the year your car was manufactured in place of the state issued plate. No doubt there is a fee. Speaking of Wyoming, they still issue two plates so a non-legal plate would not be allowed there as do many other states.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by DWBookout View Post
          Are you referring to your regular state-issued plate or a special plate not tied to taxation. In Indiana, for example, we have only one state plate on the rear and that can be had with a myriad of special so-called non profit support plates. We now even have one for the Studebaker Museum. Just about anything goes on the front as long as it's not deemed improper. I have a restored 1950 Indiana plate right now and also have one from my home state of Wyoming. That's a 1950. The later was in mint condition but i had the Indiana plate air brushed by a talented friend. I understand that in California you can get a vintage plate of the year your car was manufactured in place of the state issued plate. No doubt there is a fee. Speaking of Wyoming, they still issue two plates so a non-legal plate would not be allowed there as do many other states.
          In answer, yes, these are my state issued license plates. I have had them since 1971. In NJ you can transfer plates from one car to the next. It is possible that if you received your new license plates issued in 1959 and have continued to renew your registration each succeeding year, you can still have your 1959 number. My Dad had BWV-550 on his car from 1959 until 1969 when he passed away suddenly.
          sigpic1957 Packard Clipper Country Sedan

          "There's nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer"
          Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle
          "I have a great memory for forgetting things" Number 1 son, Lee Chan

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by studegary View Post
            Be aware that restored plates are illegal in at least some states.
            Just out of curiosity, how would anyone know it was restored?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by my2R5 View Post
              Just out of curiosity, how would anyone know it was restored?
              Maybe they would look better than the original issued plates? Not unlike a restored Model T verses a then new Model T as it rolled out of the factory door.
              sigpic1957 Packard Clipper Country Sedan

              "There's nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer"
              Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle
              "I have a great memory for forgetting things" Number 1 son, Lee Chan

              Comment


              • #8
                Just don't tell them. In OH we are required to carry our historical tags in the car while using model year license plates. I know they are in there somewhere but nobody has ever asked to see them. My only legal problem ever in that car was convincing them that Stude really did use "I" for "1" on the serial number when I transferred the title.
                _______________
                http://stude.vonadatech.com
                https://jeepster.vonadatech.com

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by 57pack View Post
                  In answer, yes, these are my state issued license plates. I have had them since 1971. In NJ you can transfer plates from one car to the next. It is possible that if you received your new license plates issued in 1959 and have continued to renew your registration each succeeding year, you can still have your 1959 number. My Dad had BWV-550 on his car from 1959 until 1969 when he passed away suddenly.
                  OK. What about contacting your BMV or whatever it's called. Seems that others would have the same issue. I seem to recall that Minnesota has a similar policy. In Wyoming, where I grew up, car owners retain the same license number as long as they stay current but new plates are issued periodically. Plates are passed down generation to generation with certain plates highly prized. Not much else to do out there in the wild west.

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                  • #10
                    I believe California motor vehicle law states that there can be NO modifications to license plates. I think that includes repainting, refurbishing, etc., but as someone in this thread said, who is going to tell them? I would just make certain that the colors are absolutely spot on and the paint job perfect. That way it would likely never be noticed.
                    Howard - Los Angeles chapter SDC
                    '53 Commander Starliner (Finally running and driving, but still in process)
                    '56 Golden Hawk (3 speed/overdrive, Power steering - Running, but not yet driving)
                    '62 GT Hawk (4 speed, A/C, Power steering - running and DRIVING!)

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                    • #11
                      You might want to consider purchasing the correct year vintage plates rather than restoring yours. I purchased a set from Chuck's Plates. http://www.chucksplates.com/?cp=&ss=New%20Jersey
                      About $60 for a perfect set of 1957 Maine plates with the correct license tag for 57, proper numbering sequence. In Maine you can put on the YOM plates but need to carry the current year plates in case you're stopped. Has never been a problem although if I decide to scoot through the EZ Pass lane on the turnpike instead of paying the toll, how are they going to determine the tag number?

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                      • #12
                        Mark, That was a good deal on those Maine plates. I had to pay $50 just for the little aluminum 55 tag to put on my 54 Washington plate. I think I paid $60 for license plate.
                        Don Wilson, Centralia, WA

                        40 Champion 4 door*
                        50 Champion 2 door*
                        53 Commander K Auto*
                        53 Commander K overdrive*
                        55 President Speedster
                        62 GT 4Speed*
                        63 Avanti R1*
                        64 Champ 1/2 ton

                        * Formerly owned

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by ddub View Post
                          Mark, That was a good deal on those Maine plates. I had to pay $50 just for the little aluminum 55 tag to put on my 54 Washington plate. I think I paid $60 for license plate.
                          I was very pleased to find them, especially at that price. He has a good selection of plates from all states.

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                          • #14
                            This guy did a nice job on restoring my plates: http://www.mojoartworks.com/default.html

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                            • #15
                              I believe that YOM license plates, from the years we would be using, were plain old paint...no reflective paint, or glow in the dark, etc. modern plates. If proper paint and correct colors was used to restore them...who would know the difference?...

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