We are moving forward in on our 1963 Corvette project as we proceed to interior removal. The interior of the 1963 Corvette is rather simple in nature; it only has two seats, a dash, center console, and some carpet. We started by removing the seats first, then removing the center console. There are a few cover panels in the 1963 Corvette (kick panel, quarter panels, and console vent panels) but all of these had previously been removed from our vehicle. Next we removed the steering wheel, gauge cluster, glove box, radio, and the other miscellaneous items on the dash. Next we removed the dash itself. This is a little tricky, but not difficult. There are a set of five pop rivets on each side of the dash that need to be drilled out, then a set of bolts that hold it to the “birdcage” (the metal frame work that provides structure to the passenger compartment, the 1963 Corvette was the first year of this) – these bolts are under the lower windshield trim. Once these are removed the dash will be loose minus one last item. Where the dash intercepts the console below the radio, a fiberglass tab glues the dash to the body. A little wiggle and the tab pops free. Now all the goodies under the dash can be removed one-by-one. Once again, I can’t stress these enough, pictures, pictures, pictures! Now the carpet can be removed, door panels taken off, door components removed, and any other interior components removed.
At this point the vehicle is just about ready for the body to come off. First though, the glass will need to be removed. Check the glass date codes – if it is original glass in good shape – don’t be a hero, call someone to remove it. Also, the stainless trim around all the glass is not the easiest to remove; it is best left to a professional if you don’t know what you’re doing. After the glass is removed and the car has been gutted, it’s time for the body to come off the chassis.
As a side note: On the production line for the 1963 Corvette (and other years) each car had a job number. As the cars were assembled, the job number was marked on various parts of the car. One spot to find that number is on the doors behind the door panels. If you look in the gallery, you will find the number on our doors (we highlighted the numbers with chalk for easy visibility).