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  1. #1
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    Default 1981 Two tone paint colors

    Hi everyone. Let me introduce myself, my name is Scott and live in Florida but I'm originally from the UK.

    I have just bought my wife a 1981 Corvette and there is something I have to find out. It presently is Silver (code 33) over Charcoal (code 39) but the trim code says it should be code 33 Upper and 33 Lower with code 39M for gray stripes. The build sheet and window sticker I received from The National Corvette Museum states the vehicle has option codes D84 (custom two-tone paint). I cannot find anywhere that states there was an option to have a silver upper and lower color that is a two tone. I'm looking at possible painting the car and would like to do it the correct color. So my question is has anybody else seen a two tone car that is not the usual 4 colors listed in the Black Book? It would be nice to know if it is a rare car.

  2. #2
    Member Vettehead Mikey's Avatar
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    Hi Scott-

    My books as well as

    Corvette Action Center | Model Center | C3 | 1981 Corvette Center | 1981 Corvette Production and Performance

    show the combination of 33 upper and 39 lower as being a standard combination for '81. Two tone paint quantities are not listed for '81 but the same colour scheme for '82 shows around 1200 having been built.

  3. #3
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    Thanks Mikey,

    There is the big NCRS show at Old Town in Kissimmee Florida this week, I guess I'll have to ask there also. It just seems strange to have a two tone trim code on the build sheet but the car be one color. I think someone has painted the charcoal on the bottom at a later date. The mystery goes on!!

  4. #4
    Moderator bill81vette's Avatar
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    Welcome to CAC!!!
    I wonder if someone has painted the half of the vette that is charcoal.....
    you might want to check out the l-81 registry,and register your '81 as well.....
    it too has all the color combos that were available in'81
    good luck!!!!!
    Bill and Gail...save the wave
    NCRS member 42415
    1981 St.Louis car #2735
    all matching numbers

    born Sept 18,1980
    Cruisefest 2008
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    Without Trucks......
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  5. #5
    Member Vettehead Mikey's Avatar
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    I'm now a little confused as to what colour your car is presently painted. Does it look like this:

    1981 Chevrolet Corvette C3 Production Statistics and Facts

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vettehead Mikey View Post
    I'm now a little confused as to what colour your car is presently painted. Does it look like this:

    1981 Chevrolet Corvette C3 Production Statistics and Facts

    That's a 78 Silver Anniversary (why it's on the 81 page is questionable) but is similar to the 81 2-tone. On that page there is the D84 code as well as your paint codes (just no numbers of how many were built). Post up some pictures.
    Welcome to CAC!

  7. #7
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    Member 6880 Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sd81 View Post
    ...the trim code says it should be code 33 Upper and 33 Lower with code 39M for gray stripes. The build sheet and window sticker I received from The National Corvette Museum states the vehicle has option codes D84 (custon two-tone paint)...It would be nice to know if it is a rare car...
    That is correct and your colors are probably stock. For reasons known only to GM, the first color is listed for both upper and lower, then the second color. Upper and lower refer to the surfaces above and below the belt line. It is my understanding the two tone cars were first completely painted the primary color (in your case, silver). After the silver had been baked, the charcoal (second color) was sprayed.

    D84 is only the RPO code for two-tone paint; it does not specify the colors. Original paint codes are here: http://www.corvettepaintcodes.com/

    Reminder, the paint codes above are for base coat/clear coat enamel and are about 40 years old. Your paint supplier may be able to use the original codes to match colors for the newer paints.

    Silver/Charcoal 82. 81s would have looked the same.



  8. #8
    Administrator Yoda's Avatar
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    I am not sure that the above 82 is a Silver/Charcoal Grey Metallic... to me it looks more like 24/26 Silver Blue/Dark Blue it probably is just the color from my computer

    Here are two photo's from our L81VetteRegistry Members of a
    1981 Silver/Dark Blue Metallic (33/38M)
    and another Members photo of a
    1981 Silver/Charcoal Metallic (33/39M)



    Just for information the 1982 Code for Silver/Charcoal was (13/39)

    Good Luck, and as for being rare... they are all rare to some extend, esp. the longer they survive.. I have documented ONE RARE 1981 Corvette and that one is a SPEC PRIMARY 1981 that we can DOCUMENT... I have had about 30 or more of the rarest 1981 to register at the L81 Vette Registry.... That would be THE CODE 24 1981 Corvette so far I have not received nor has anyone authenticated the ONE AND ONLY Code 24 Dark Metallic Blue 1981 Corvette ...

    Enjoy your car and enjoy the

    Bud
    "Quality, not quantity"
    "The American people will never knowingly adopt "SOCIALISM." But, under the name of "LIBERALISM," they will adopt every fragment of the "SOCIALIST" program, until one day America will be a "SOCIALIST NATION," without knowing how it happened.
    (Norman Thomas, U.S. SOCIALIST PARTY CANDIDATE PARTY presidential candidate 1940, 1944 and 1948)


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    I hope this sheds a little light on the matter. Here's a copy of the build sheet and some pictures of the car.











    I am currently replacing the brakes so I couldn't get it outside to take better pictures.

  10. #10
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    B is the model year code for 1981
    07C July, third week of the month (C)
    101915 your consecutive unit number.


  11. #11
    Member Vettehead Mikey's Avatar
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    Great Scott! the car looks great, Scott.

    Looks like the original paint to me. Very nice.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vettehead Mikey View Post
    ...Looks like the original paint to me....
    I agree. If it were mine, I would think long and hard about the repaint.

  13. #13
    Moderator bill81vette's Avatar
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    1981 dark blue metallic

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    I agree with Mike!!!!
    Bill and Gail...save the wave
    NCRS member 42415
    1981 St.Louis car #2735
    all matching numbers

    born Sept 18,1980
    Cruisefest 2008
    Cruisefestous 2009
    Cruisefest 2010
    Cruisefest 2011
    Cruisefest2012



    Without Trucks......
    You would be Hungry,Homeless and Naked!!!!!!



  14. #14
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    I've found a few other silver/charcoal cars and the trim codes on the tag are the same as mine. That clears up the mystery.

    As far a repainting there are a quite a few blemishes and places where the paint is thin. There is a paint shop that's local that only do Corvettes so I'll see if they can do just the parts I need doing.

    Thanks everyone for the comments and help. Next job is to finish the brakes (waiting for a caliper to be sent to replace the defective one that came in the kit) then get the wheels on and drive it.

    Scott

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