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mgedit
05-31-2012, 09:16 AM
My 56 TR3 came from California (black plate SYN 082) and was registered with VIN R55005626268 (which is an aluminum plate "added" to the car). The actual VIN is TS11537L (confirmed by Heritage Certificate). I read somewhere that some California cars were registered with a secondary number such as this, but in that case it appears it have been a supplement to the car's VIN to indicate that it was registered in California and indicating the year of registration. Anyone have more information to share on how car were registered in California in the 50s? I have my title changed to match this longer VIN but ideally I'd like to have the car registered with its TS VIN. Cheers, Mike

https://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r268/mgedit/VIN56TR3.jpg

cheseroo
05-31-2012, 10:29 AM
There are a number of situations where the California DMV will "re-VIN" a car. For instance, if the car was stolen -> recovered with VIN plate removed and later returned to road use. They just slapped another VIN on it and moved on to next in line. The early ones were rather plain but the later ones indicate that the CA DMV issued it. Remember that these cars were oddities as compared to Ford Galaxies and such plus times were different then so if someone had to verify a VIN and couldn't find it - "Gene! bring me one of those plates and some rivets" Another possibility is that a dealer attached an inventory stock# to the car and that has gone on to become the VIN. Reverting to the correct VIN will probably take some legwork but should be possible.

Black plates were issued in CA from 63-69. The CA plates for that car would originally have been a yellow background with black letters. SYN would have been issued in 65 or 66 so those are not the original plates to the car. FWIW, if you have both plates they do have value.

TR3driver
05-31-2012, 10:58 AM
:iagree:
Other states have a similar process, for example my Dad's TR3A bears a similar tag from the state of Indiana (except it didn't even have the corners rounded and has rusted badly since it had no paint or protective coating at all). One of my Stags was also re-VINed, since the old VIN tag was obviously tampered with.

But it was not a standard part of car registration in CA in the 50s. I have the old registration for TS13571L, and it shows the engine number. The car doesn't have any extra tags either (except some sort of rally plaque on the dash).

You are probably thinking of the "STC" tags that were used in the early 60s to indicate the "model year". Here's a shot of the STC tag on my Sports 6 (which was made in 63 but sold as a 65 model)
https://i258.photobucket.com/albums/hh260/TR3driver/Misc%20parts/STCcloseup.jpg

Geo Hahn
05-31-2012, 11:25 AM
https://members.cybertrails.com/~ahwahnee/STC.JPG

I had an 'expert' tell me that STC stood for 'Sold to Customer'. He didn't care for my suggestion that it might mean "Standard-Triumph Corporation".

I have heard it claimed by some owners (these were Healeys BTW) that California added digits to get a 10-digit VIN -- though the plate in question has 11 or 12 characters and anyway when I had my TR3A in CA they had no problem with the original commisison number.

mgedit
05-31-2012, 11:43 AM
Thanks for the input guys. Very interesting. Cheers, Mike

Darrell_Walker
05-31-2012, 05:47 PM
I have heard it claimed by some owners (these were Healeys BTW) that California added digits to get a 10-digit VIN -- though the plate in question has 11 or 12 characters and anyway when I had my TR3A in CA they had no problem with the original commisison number.

When my car was registered in California, the VIN listed on the registration was "66CTC...".

I don't know if they changed colors on the "STC" plates each year, but my STC-66 plate is/was red.

-Darrell

Celtic2
06-01-2012, 02:18 AM
The STC plate used by some states was a “Supplemental Title Certificate” plate and were not limited to Standard-Triumph. They were also used on imported vehicles from other foreign manufacturers. Evidence suggests these plates were added when a vehicle was re-designated as a model for a later year.

mgedit
06-01-2012, 09:17 AM
Thanks for the additional input. Great information. Cheers, Mike

Moseso
06-05-2012, 11:25 AM
I replaced the motor in my '65 BMW cycle in 1975 or 6. CA cycle titles carry both the frame no. and the motor no. The replacement motor was a brand new "replacement part" factory motor -- which came unnumbered. So I went to the DMV since the old number on my title no longer applied and they gave me an "assigned number." The number (DMV54106CA) was on a metallic self-adhesive sticker, which they stuck on my motor. Then they hit one end with a little DMV logo stamp for extra officialness, I guess. Future registration cards carried that motor number.

You can make out -- though not read -- the sticker in this photo. It's the blueish thing on the side of the motor.