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1958 Chevrolet Corvette Restoration- Long Road Travelled

Updated: Aug 19, 2022

A lengthy amount of time, but time well spent!

1958 Chevrolet Corvette showing the side of the car with large white-walled tires.

1958 Chevrolet Corvette (media by JC)

This week, I enjoyed seeing my friend’s fully restored 1958 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible for the first time since its return. Purchased in 1977, it has toiled away in his garage for 44 years. Sure there were the occasional small trips, but the unit was in serious need of some TLC.

The group of us had heard the story of this 1958 Corvette Fuelie and my friend’s mission to have it restored. After 20 years of stories, it was finally time. Two years ago, he and his wife took it upon themselves to have the unit picked up from his garage and delivered to the restorer. The original plan was to do the restoration themselves, but this was going to take the expertise of professionals.

Over the years, the vehicle was returned to primer gray as they had not quite decided on a color. In 1958 Chevrolet offered this vehicle in 8 possible colors – Tuxedo Black, Snowcrest White, Signet Red, Silver Blue, Regal Turquoise, Panama Yellow, Silver, and the color my friend decided upon Charcoal.

A larger racing engine had been dropped into his current ride, and it would need to be removed and replaced with the standard 283 Cubic Inch 290 horsepower V-8 (Fuel Injected/Fuelie). The 1958 Corvette was four years into its production, and it had undergone a makeover. This was the first use of quad headlights. The body of the car was lengthened by 9 inches over previous model years. The body of my friend’s car would need some severe repair (pictured).

1958 Chevrolet Corvette body prior to being worked on.

1958 Chevolet Camaro Body (media by JC)

1958 Chevrolet Corvette body prior to any work to restore.

1958 Corvette Side View (media by JC)

The restoration was a daunting task, and the pandemic exacerbated it. There were several dates missed, parts were delayed, and labor became hard to find. I recall preparing to see the finished vehicle at a car show earlier this year only to find out its completion would be delayed even longer. If I was getting impatient, you could only imagine how the owners were feeling.

It is amazing what the finished product will do for a person’s overall mentality. Even on the day it was delivered, we were discussing how frustrating it was he had not received the car yet. When it showed up in his driveway, all of the frustration washed away and a sense of euphoria set in. This is what he welcomed into his home.

1958 Chevrolet Corvette nestled away in its climate controlled booth.

Washboard Hood Treatment 1958 Corvette (media by JC)

1958 Chevrolet Corvette parked on a driveway with sun shining down.

Wide Whitewall Tires

1958 Chevrolet Corvette side-view.

Convertible (media by JC)

1958 Chevrolet Corvette red interior.

Restored Red Interior (media by JC)

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