How To Remove And Repair The Pinstriping On Your Imperial

 


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Tip from Rolland about 1981 Imperial Pinstriping:

On the side of the car:

The pin stripe follows the sheet metal bend line of the rear quarter, the door and the fender. They are located 3/8" below the bend line. On the rear quarter if you extend the metal bend line behind the rear quarter window the start of the pinstripe will just touch that line. At the front fender the front of the pinstripe begins on the front fascia 8 1/4" in front of the line where the fascia meets the fender.

On the trunk lid the pinstripe is 1/2" below the bend line where the trunk bends from near horizontal to near vertical. It follows this line onto the quarter panels. The pinstripe starts downward just 3/8" from the outside edge of the quarter panel and continues to 7/8" from the bottom of the trunk lid. The distance from the edge of the quarter panel is 3/8" at the top and changes gradually to 1/2" at the bottom of the quarter. The bottom pinstripe on the trunk stays 7/8" above the lower edge of the trunk lid until 1/4" from the license plate trim.

All dimensions are to the outer edge of the stripe. The narrow stripe is closest to the metal bend line.

Are you using the factory decal? I used a general purpose tape from a local parts house. It is very close and the ends are similar to the original. However the quality is not too good. The ends tend to peel and I have had to reglue them. The tape I used is approximately 5/16' wide. The wide stripe is about 1/8' wide, the space between the wide and narrow stripe is about 1/8' and the narrow stripe is 1/16''.


Question from Wayne (1965 - 1966):

Is the pinstripe pattern the same on the 65 and 66 Imperials?

I thought they were, but when I looked at the Photo Archive book on the 64-68 Imperials, I only saw one picture of a 1965 Imperial with a pin stripe. On page 64, is a photo of a 65 Imperial at the Chicago auto show. The pin stripe is shown above the body side contour line.

One page 118 of the same book, a 1966 model is photographed with the pinstripe below the body contour line.

If the photo on page 64 is correct for the 1965 Imperials, then it would appear that the 65 pinstripe did not end with a V at the end - because the pinstripe is above the "crease" in the sheet metal.

Replies:

From Greg:

I checked out those pictures you mentioned Wayne in the Photo Archives. I overlooked the one of the Imperial at the Chicago Autoshow because the stripe was so faint in the picture I didn't even see it. In my showroom brochure for '65, the black LeBaron shown on the second and third pages ('centerfold') clearly shows the stripe with the stylized arrowhead ending at the rear. The location of the stripe is below the crease on the sides and hits the door handles toward the bottom third of the handle. It appears to be a little thicker or heavier looking than the one on the '66 in the Photo Archives.

Kenyon Wills has already good naturedly berated me for even thinking of applying vinyl striping to this car after taking the restoration to the point that I have taken it. So I guess I'll at least try and see if there is someone out there who is capable of painting the stripe on instead of applying tape. I wonder if there is such a person out there and I wonder what that will cost? Kenyon and his 'powers of persuasion'!

From Mark:

Most cities have someone who can do this. Look in the phone book under custom cars. They will usually have a pinstriper or know of a good one.

Also, most new car dealers have pinstripes come around regularly and they will will know of good ones locally also. My Brand X van had a very good custom hand-painted stripe from the dealer when I bought it. I negotiated the price out of the drive-out. But, they wanted only $120 for it.

From Paul:

The correct pinstriping for the 1965 Imperial is very clearly shown in the 1965 Imperial sales brochure. It appears on the shot of the black LeBaron. If you have the large sized brochure it is easy to see. It has been a really long time since I looked at that brochure, but I seem to think that the large brochure also includes a side view of the Ghia Limousine, and that it has the striping as well. Obviously longer, but in the same design.


Question from Greg (1965):

Was looking at my '65 Imperial brochure last night and noticed the black LeBaron featured in the front had a pin stripe down the upper side of the car. Back then it was more than likely painted rather than taped like today's cars. I did not notice any of the other models with the stripe. I looked in my Imperial Archives book ('64 thru '68) and also did not notice any stripes on the '65 cars pictured. Was striping an available option for all models or just the LeBaron for '65? The paint refinishing on my '65 Crown convertible is not far from being finished and I was thinking about recreating the nice looking stripes I saw on that LeBaron in the brochure. Any suggestions?

Replies:

From Chris:

The paint stripes were hand painted - supposedly all striping in the mid-60's was done by one man who used to do it for Chrysler in the 30's.

If stripes were offered on LeBarons in '65, they could be gotten on Crowns, by special order if nothing else. I know they were standard on LeBarons in '66 and a regular option on Crowns.

The single stripe runs about 1" below the crease on the upper fender. It is about 1/8" thick. It ends in a sort of check mark that is almost identical to the character line seen on the hoods of so many 30's Packards. The lines of the check mark are about 1/16" thick. The IML page on the "Popemobile" shows this stripe nicely.

Doing a stripe in the same color as your interior would be quite stylish!

From Wayne:

On the 1966 Imperials the pinstripe was standard on the LeBaron, and optional on all other models. The pinstriping was done by hand with paint, not with tape.

I would assume that the pinstripe was an option for 1965. If you know someone with a dealer trim selection book, they could confirm this for you.

The door handle on the '64-'66 models has a groove just before the lower edge of the door handle. I think the pinstripe looks nice when it is aligned with this groove.

From Paul:

Pinstriping was standard on the LeBaron in 1965, and was available/optional on the Crown models. I don't remember if it is listed that way in the sale literature, but it was available upon request. The pattern used on Imperials through 1967 was very distinctive, and is not easily duplicated with tape.

From Gene:

According to the 1965 Imperial Order Code List: LeBaron paint stripe is listed as a No Cost option, available in all exterior colors. Customer may omit the stripe if so desired. I see no mention of painted stripes available as an option for Crowns. (84-380-8658-REV. 10-64) I agree, stripes painted on look good. My '65 vert does not have stripes.

From Roger:

The pinstripe on the '65 LeBaron was standard and was, indeed, painted. Chrysler found a man who had hand-painted the stripes on Chryslers of the late 30's who was still working there. He took up his brush and painted all the Imperial stripes for the next several years. I believe the striping was optional on Crowns.


Question from Wayne (1965 versus 1966):

Is the pinstripe pattern the same on the 65 and 66 Imperials?

I thought they were, but when I looked at the Photo Archive book on the 64-68 Imperials, I only saw one picture of a 1965 Imperial with a pin stripe. On page 64, is a photo of a 65 Imperial at the Chicago auto show. The pin stripe is shown above the body side contour line.

One page 118 of the same book, a 1966 model is photographed with the pinstripe below the body contour line.

If the photo on page 64 is correct for the 1965 Imperials, then it would appear that the 65 pinstripe did not end with a V at the end - because the pinstripe is above the "crease" in the sheet metal.

Replies:

From Greg:

I checked out those pictures you mentioned Wayne in the Photo Archives. I overlooked the one of the Imperial at the Chicago Autoshow because the stripe was so faint in the picture I didn't even see it. In my showroom brochure for '65, the black LeBaron shown on the second and third pages ('centerfold') clearly shows the stripe with the stylized arrowhead ending at the rear. The location of the stripe is below the crease on the sides and hits the door handles toward the bottom third of the handle. It appears to be a little thicker or heavier looking than the one on the '66 in the Photo Archives.

From Roger:

The Imperial pictured at the '65 Chicago Auto Show is the LeBaron d'Or Show car, not a production example. It was a dark green (an enhanced Sequoia Green, I believe) with 24K gold trim. I don't remember if the bumpers were also gold plated.

Somewhere, I have an article from Automotive News ca 1965 that tells of the man who hand-painted the stripes on the Imperials. Also, I have pictures of an original, unrestored '65 LeBaron that I saw at Desert Valley Auto Parts in Phoenix a few years ago that shows exactly how the car was striped. I'll dig them out for posting on the site, as it would they would be useful as a restoration guide. As our darlings were striped with human hands, there are bound to be some variations, depending on whether your car was striped before or after lunch on or on a Monday or Friday.....:)


Question from Anthony (1967):

Does anyone know if the 1967 Model year Imperials from the factory came with "pin-striping" on the sides I have a bet with "the bodyshop/restorer" that they did! He says they didn't.

Replies:

From Elijah:

You win. Take a look at this ad . The factory pin striping is clearly visible in this original ad for 1967.

The LeBaron got a different style of pin-striping than did the Crown.

From Ed:

The '67 has the pin stripe running through the door lock cylinder ending just before the rear bumper. The LeBaron has a slight dip in the lower stripe just ahead of the rear bumper.

From Roy:

You can find out what color they were on from the code plate under the hood.

From Eric:

Yes they did. I’ve had a '67 and '68 Imperial and both had identical dual stripes.

From William:

Seems that it's possible they did as factory equipment, BUT it might depend on the model and related trim level. As if LeBarons did and Crown's did not, for example. This is one place were the factory Data and Color Book and/or a sales brochure would come in handy. I do recall that '67 New Yorkers had factory, two stripe, pin stripes, so I suspect some Imperials probably did too.

From Chris:

While the pinstripes were standard in 1967, they could be deleted when the car was ordered. The stripe code on the data plate would be V9X, X being the code for a delete option.

My '67 is a factory delete-stripe car, so it never had them.

From Bill:

I have a 67 4-dr sedan with original paint etc. Has buff pin stripes on cream body. They end just short of the fender ends. Were put on at the factory.


Question from Don (1967):

Does someone have the pinstriping spec (location/width) for a 1967 Imperial Crown convertible? My car is ivory with burgundy interior, so should I use burgundy for the stripe?

Replies:

From Leslie:

Having just finished having my car painted, I'm getting ready to have it re-pinstriped. As I understand it if your car was a light color it had a black pinstripe and if it was a dark color it got white Stripes. I however have never liked this combination.

My car is the factory default color "Haze Green" ;-) With a White Vinyl top and Green Interior it originally had a black stripe, but I will be going with white.

From Roy:

Pinstripes on '67 Imperial Crowns are one eighth inch over one sixteenth inch separated by one eighth inch, centered on the door lock, running from about one inch from the leading edge of the front fender nose to just shy of the rubber pad of the bumperette in the rear. Le Barons had the check mark design mentioned earlier, just before the stripes terminate. You should be able to determine the original color of the pinstripes from the car’s data plate.

From Dave:

I know what you mean. The black stripe on the Haze Green almost looks like an afterthought. I was thinking even a medium to light gold stripe would have looked better. But the white stripe with your white top...yeah. I went out and measured before I saw Roy's reply. He's right. And as I was looking I was amazed at the condition of the painted on striping on ours. It has been shedded since new, but with the chasing and bumping of cows over the years on my father-in-law's farm, and the owies getting painted only where they needed it afterwards, all the pinstriping looks new. Looks like at least they taped off the striping where they needed to paint. I know the whole car has never been repainted and the striping looks the same front to back.


Question from Dave (1967):

The black stripe on my Haze Green '67 almost looks like an afterthought.  Was it originally factory applied or dealer applied?

Replies:

From Chris:

According to the '67 Color and Trim Selector, a black stripe was the only stripe color offered with Haze Green, regardless of interior, UNLESS the car had a vinyl top in a different color. So if the car has a white vinyl top (or canopy if it's a Crown Coupe), it would have a white stripe. The Chestnut vinyl top color (4-doors only) was not offered with Haze Green, so basically the choices are as follows if you want to be correct about it:

No vinyl top: Black stripe. Black vinyl top: Black stripe. White vinyl top: White stripe.

And then there is always the delete option (as mine was built): No stripe.

That's what the factory did... what you choose is up to you!

By the way, the stripe dimensions were (top to bottom): 1/8" thick upper stripe 3/32" gap 1/32" thick lower stripe

LeBarons start as two parallel stripes in front and have flared little flourishes in the lower stripe near the rear. Crowns are just two nearly straight lines that never meet at either end. All stripes start at the very front fender edge a hair below the upper body side character line (the crease that runs through the door lock cylinders) and end at the rubber spacer for the rear bumperette.

From Don:

I have gotten two specs on strips, which is right for a 1967:

top stripe 1/8    1/8 

gap 1/8     3/32 

lower stripe 1/16     1/32


Question from Jack (1981):

Does anybody know an easy way to remove those faded factory tape pinstripes on my 1981?

Replies:

From Phil:

Most body shop supply stores carry a device called a Pinstripe remover wheel. It's a kind of cloth covered bit that you put in a power drill, then basically buff off the stripes. I've also just slowly peeled the pinstripes off, as long as the vehicle was in the sun , to soften the stripes. This can require patience, cause the stripes usually break and come off in small chunks, and will leave adhesive residue behind. I usually use a little "Gum-Out" or lacquer thinner on a rag to remove the residue, but only on faded original paint. It will remove paint from previously touched up areas, and is mainly a quick way to get it off before paint work. If you care about the paint, slowly working the residue off with some wax would probability be your best option. Wd-40 works surprisingly well too, as long as you don't intend to paint afterward.

From Rob:

Most of the paint suppliers sell some kind of aerosol to remove the tape stripes. I know that Sherman Williams does. But most people just use a heat gun (not too hot) or hair dryer to warm them up & them peel them off.


Question from Kurt (1981):

Can't find part number for heather pinstriping (deck lid) for my '81. Anybody got a part number or the decal itself?

Reply from Dick:

T073 VD2 is the number you want. It is in section 23-800 of the parts book.


Question from Davis (1983):

Does anyone know where I could find an original tape pin stripe kit (in red) for my 83. My car is in otherwise excellent original shape, but the pin stripes are terrible. I do not want to paint pin stripes on, since that would not be original.

Replies:

From Neal:

I had the same problem when I repainted my Cordoba back in '95. The tape stripes aren't available at all, and mine were probably just as unique as the Imperial - they start as little daggers at the front, and make an abrupt angle downward at the tail end of the car. The old tape stripes were chipped and the clear portion discolored so it was really apparent that they were tape stripes. I had real paint stripes put on which mimic the old ones, and they look terrific. I think that's the only way to get what approaches the factory look.

From Ed:

I agree with Neal. In fact, I think that painted-on stripes look BETTER than the original tape stripes, which often show the edges of the appliqué as they age and get chipped pretty easily. I consider myself a "purist" with regards to originality of my old cars, but when it comes to something like this, then I go for the easier (and better) option--the painted-on stripes--rather than trying to hunt down a really expensive set of NOS stripes that will be of uncertain quality due to their age anyway.


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