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Chassis Number and Partial Chassis Number Locations — by John Chatley

Paul Goldzung's Chassis Number Location List

I would like to recognize Paul Goldzung's article in the 1994 356 Registry magazine, Vol. 17, No. 6, documenting all of the chassis number locations he found on D #85643, including those written in crayon, pencil and chalk. View a PDF file of Paul's list here.

The complete chassis number on a Convertible D can be found in the three usual 356 locations: the driver-side door hinge post cover plate, the plate on the trunk floor by the passenger side of the gas tank and the main chassis number location stamped into the trunk floor (bulkhead) between the gas tank and the battery box. Additionally, Drauz stamped other parts on Convertible Ds with the last two or three of the car's chassis number, which I will attempt to detail here. [Note: the 356 chassis number is now commonly known as the "VIN" or Vehicle Identification Number. The VIN numbering system did not come into existence until 1982, so Porsche never used it during 356 production.]

Drauz did some things differently compared to Reutter-built coupes and cabs of the same timeframe. Some Ds have the hood hinge mount ("front deck hinge strap") and the trunk hood latch tongue ("front deck latch finger tongue") both stamped with the last two or three chassis number digits, while other Ds may only have the hood latch tongue stamped and not the typical 356 location of the hood hinge mount.

I have found these stamped locations on a Convertible D—photos below with captions above each photo:

Full chassis number:

Stamped into the center trunk floor (bulkhead)

I.D. plate with color code riveted to driver's door hinge post cover

Chassis I.D. plate riveted on trunk floor next to gas tank, passenger side

Partial chassis numbers using the last 2-3 digits:

Door hinge covers, backside bottom

Door hinge cover, front side (no VIN)

Doors, inside metal surface, under interior panels

Close-up of door, inside metal surface

Trunk hood latch tongue

Driver's side trunk hood hinge attaching mount with numbers (sometimes)

Driver's side trunk hood hinge attaching mount (often not numbered)

Rear engine lid, bottom of weather shield (not in usual 356 location at corner of rain tray)

Rear engine lid locking tongue (occasionally)

no photo yet

Front bumper, center of inside lower lip, looking down from in front of the car

Rear bumper, center of inside lower lip, looking at the back of the bumper with it off the car

Front & Rear bumper mounting brackets, outer surface of all eight pieces between body mounting holes & bumpers

Front brackets

Rear brackets

Windshield frame, center inside groove for glass & rubber seal

Windshield frame, under the top left latch (occasionally)

Windshield posts, base to cowl (occasionally?)

Windshield posts, base & mounting pin (occasionally?)

Windshield posts, beneath window weather seal rails

Left post

Right post

Top frame over passenger door, facing the driver

Top frame rear-most bow, center, facing rearward (covered with fabric)

Top frame over passenger door, close up

Rear cowl cover trim strips (3) (alum. interior pieces covered w/ vinyl or leather)

Rear cowl cover trim strip, close up

Interior Door Garnish Rails: some Conv. Ds had these "door caps" stamped under the upholstered cover

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