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'59 Registry Reunion #3: TonyK Finds His '59

CHEV66JB

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 18, 2003
Messages
475
Location
Northeastern MD
Corvette
'59 Corvette #5366
In February of 2004, I had the opportunity to speak with a CAC member, "TonyK", regarding his '59 Corvette- He mentioned how he sold the car sometime around 1980, and always hoped one day to find out where she ended up, in hopes of being able to buy her back. Last location he'd heard it wound up at was either in MN, or in the vicinity of the mid-west somewhere. The car he owned was car #6490.

As of this week, doing my routine searches across the Web, the car managed to pop up on eBay. And its location? Jackson, Missouri (just where the prior owner had heard thru the grapevine it ended up at). TonyK has reached out to the current seller of the car, and is hoping to at least speak with the current owner to provide them with the history on the car, as well as possibly make arrangements to re-acquire the car one day.

This event was another exciting moment for me, as it has helped to reconnect yet another '59 Corvette with traces of its past. In this particular scenario, TonyK even mentioned to me that the prior owner of the car before him was Ron Kapps (sp?) of the NHRA.. Talk about history!!

I'd like to thank the staff of CAC for helping this reunion take place, specifically Tom Bryant for helping to think "outside the box" when TonyK's contact information was no longer being displayed. As I've said before: '59 owners, just give me a little time- sooner or later I'm going to find out about YOUR '59! Stay tuned..

Best Regards,

Jim
 

TonyK

Member
Joined
Nov 8, 2000
Messages
7
Location
Everett, WA USA
Corvette
1998 Medium Pearl Purple convertible
Jim,

Thanks a bunch, it was a real surprise to check the email this morning to see you've found out something about my old 59. Figured I'd take the time to fill you in on a little history that I know about the car !

I bought this car in 1973, from Ron Capps who at the time worked a wrench for Chacha Muldowney, but lived in the NW, I think. The car was here anyway. We purchased the car through a freind who belonged to the Majestic Corvette Club of Seattle, back then, for $1,500 as an investment with what was suppose to be my college money. Needless to say there was no college, but thats another story. The car ran great, it had a built 327 in it, with 4" I-beams in the from axle, to be a future "Gasser", but didn't make it to the track. The interior was rough, but all there. The front teeth where missing, and had a hard top, no softtop at the time.
At 14 I was the talk of the town. I'd go out and start it up from time to time, even attempted to drive it up the long driveway we had. But the next day it didn't start. Figured my father fixed it, so I wouldn't be tempted to drive it around the lake I grew up on, Lake Serene in WA. So I started tearing into it. I knew little or nothing about cars, and back then there was no internet. I think Al Gore was only 18? hahaha
So I stripped the car, pulled the engine, and started bugging the local Chevy garage for parts and info. I stripped it to the frame, sandblasted it, repainted it with Imaron Black, rebuilt the front end, rear end, brake lines, gas lines, transmission, found a motor/block my grandfather had lieing around, I'm sure was a 1962 283 block. Took it to some engine guy in Seattle, and had it balanced and borred to 1959 specs. The idea was to put a dual carb setup on the car. When I finished the chassis, I took it into the Chevy garage at the time in Lynnwood WA, and had them double check all I had done. Needless to say for a novice car person, I did a pretty good job. Only one King-pin needed to be replaced. The original car was White with Red interior. And it had never been wrecked as near as I could tell. I stripped the paint down to the glass and was getting ready to paint it. But suddenly I was 18, free of school and my dad wanted his garage back. Can't blame him really. So the car went into storage. A year or so went by, when I sold the car to Ronald Becker in Mt. Vernon for $4,500. That was the last I saw of the car.

Now some 27 years later, here she is. Not the colors I wanted her to be, but nonetheless, a beautiful car. At the time restoration was not what I had in mind, other then to keep her basically stock. I wanted her to be a pacific ocean blue flake, with pearl white inserts, True Spoke wheels, low profile, with White leather interior, and a pearl white top with white soft top, under the cap and dual quads.

Funny when I was 16 I wanted to drive her. Dad said if I could afford the insurance I could. Guess what in 1975, insurance for a 1959 Corvette for a 16 year old, would have run $2,250 a year. Funny part is its about the same price today for a 16 year old. 31 years later.

I have pictures somewhere of the build, and some paper work too. I had put $8,000 in her at the time, and when I sold her to Ron, it was just a stripped body on a great frame with a beautiful engine and rebuild to the point. Still a lot of parts and work to put into her.

One strange thing was that during the stripping process, I found a zippo in one of the door gunnels. There is no way anyone other then a assembly line worker could have lost it in there. There is an access hole in the gunnel, that I opened and moved the body around and heard something in there. After a day of mirrors and air, I found the zippo. So anyone out there who built these cars, knows of a assy line worker loosing a Zippo let me know. That's around in some box somewhere with the other Vette stuff. Once I find it all I'll scan and post the photos here.

Today I have a 98 Medium Amythist pearl, (stock color) convertible, with some light mods and Nos. One of 153 convertibles that year in this color according to some reports. And no she's not for sale either. I want them both frankly.

Enjoy all !

Tony
 

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