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Studio updates.

Nuts, Bolts, Details & Dings: NCRS Top Flight Judging

Today, I visited B&G Auto Repair in Rahway, New Jersey for something pretty special and very different.  I've attended Chrysler Carlisle Nationals the last few years and I wish they had judging like this! (Although, I realize that would take a huge amount of time.)  My friend Jack recently acquired a 1972 Chevrolet Corvette LT-1 from the midwest and like his previous Corvettes, wanted to get this one certified with the NCRS "Top Flight" award.

What is NCRS? Well it stands for National Corvette Restorers Society and was founded in 1974 with the sole purpose of recognizing cars that are restored or preserved through the Top Flight Judging process.  To earn the award, the car being judged must score a 94% or higher based on a total 4500 points.  The judging includes a multitude of different inspections.  Exterior, Interior, Chassis, Operations (lights, horn, wipers, etc) and Mechanical.  Almost 22,000 Corvettes have been judged and roughly 16,000 have actually passed.

Based upon the inspection, at least two judges will go over the entire car from tip to toe.  Things like hoses, clamps, visor decals, spare tires and factory spare floor jacks are carefully examined to verify their authenticity.  Nothing is missed here.  Doors are opened, gas caps are checked and even rubber bump stops for handles under the removable tops are examined.  In Jack's case, the new gas cap he installed was considered 'over-restored' by the judges though it was period correct.  These guys don't mess around.

The Corvettes in the room being examined vary from a first generation C1 to a pair of late model C4's.  It was impressive to see the judges do their jobs, the cars themselves are still rather original.  Some even showing signs of their life since rolling off the production line wearing scars in their fiberglass bodies but a car is only original once! The 1954 Inline, Blue Flame six cylinder was a treat, how often do you ever see a C1 in a color other than white?

In the end, Jack's LT-1 passed and is now NCRS Top Flight certified!  Now I know what goes into serious concours-style judging.  I had a great time seeing these cars today and hope you guys enjoy the photos below.

--RS

Ronald Schendorf