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Many Corvette owners don’t bother to wave anymore.But in the interest of increasing the level of cooperation among our Corvette brethren, we bring you this essay called:

“How to properly execute a Corvette Wave 101”

The author, known only as bones_191, sets the stage for the three typical waves when two Corvette drivers pass in opposite directions by telling us three major things to look for while driving a Corvette: speed traps, Supra Turbo and Mustang HO drivers, and wild game like deer that can shatter a Corvette body if hit at speeds like, say, oh 140mph.

  1. The first and most critical of three major requirements to do the wave, he says, is possessing a Corvette.
  2. Next you’ll need a blue-tooth headset for your cell phone to keep your hands free for the wave, and finally
  3. You’ll also be responsible for the timing and crispness of retort while waving. Here’s where things get complicated in a hurry.
WAVE #1: The first kind of wave is performed during a brief window of opportunity to establish the motions required. This window, he says, can be calculated using the following formula. Speed + Acceleration per second multiplied by 2, then by adding the numbers in the sum – (with any three digit number, the first two digits are considered the first number, and the third digit is the second number); then, by subtracting 9 from this number, and then dividing this sum by 4, you will have a relative window of time to perform the wave. Got all that? More importantly, your response and that of the approaching driver must be simultaneous, requiring practice by both parties to get the timing and feel down pat. “As the window of opportunity, per the above formula increases or decreases, you will need to change the speed your arm sweep accordingly, for maximum effect,” the author says. “The retort and snap should be quick and confident.”
WAVE #2: The second type of wave is the simplest, he says, and is performed at a stop light. Once the angle of degree is achieved, he writes, simply nod your head in an upward jerk-type motion extending your chin slightly, then resuming the starting point of the nod, slowly turn your neck back to a natural driving position. “That’s it,” he says. “Just remember; never do this nod in a downward, chin-tucking fashion. Always extend the chin and nod upward. By reversing this nod, your wave will show weakness and may be construed as an insult rather than its intended meaning.” And we wouldn’t want to send an insult to our fellow enthusiasts, would we?

From the August/September 1969 issue of Corvette News

Ever since Corvette No. 00001 first met Corvette No. 00002 on the road, their drivers saluted each other with waves. Today, unfortunately, this grand and glorious tradition is wavering. WAVE WHEN YOU PASS ANOTHER CORVETTE!

There's one item of standard equipment that comes as a pleasant surprise to every new Corvette owner. It's an instant wave of recognition he or she receives when he meets one of their ilks on the road. The first time it happens, they will be taken by surprise. He immediately thinks:

  1. He has been mistaken for Sterling Moss. 
  2. His lights are on.
  3. He just giving your "The Village's Salute" (the bird).

Soon, however, the new Vette owner anticipates, indeed even relishes, encountering other Vettes as he drives. During this period, he experiments with his waves, running the gamut from the gaping "yoo hoo" to the ultra cool "two finger flip." He perfects his timing, making sure he affects neither a too-early wave, nor the jaded "oh brother" too-late variety. Determined not to be one upped, he even develops a defense mechanism for non wavers, usually settling on the "Wave"? My hand was just on the way to scratch my head" approach. (This is especially useful when you're not driving your Vette, but you forget, and like a dummy, you wave anyway.)


Indeed, one of the most perplexing problems facing a would-be waver is what to do when driving next to a fellow Vette owner. Passing him going in opposite directions is one thing. Greetings are exchanged, and that's that. But what happens when you pull up next to a guy at a light, wave, nod, smile and then pull up to him at the next light, a block later? Wave again? Nod bashfully? Grin self-consciously? Ignore him? Or take the chicken's way out and turn down the next side street? If you're expecting an answer, you won't find it here. Sad to say, some questions don't have any. SAVE THE WAVE!

Girl-type Corvette drivers also have a unique problem: to wave or not to wave. This miss or misses who borrows her man's Corvette for the first time is immediately faced with this quandary. Should she wave first and look overly friendly, or ignore the wave and look like a snob? Most ladies who drive their own Vettes prefer to suffer the latter rather than take a chance of being misread. For this reason, all girls are excused for occasionally failing to return a well-meaning wave. So are new owners who are still learning the ropes.


There is no excuse, however, for a guy who refuses to return the wave, not out of ignorance, but of arrogance or apathy. While this type of behavior is the exception to the rule, it seems a few owners of newer models refuse to recognize anything older than theirs, while some others simply won't wave, period. Boo on them. These ding-a-lings don't seem to realize that they are helping to squash a tradition that had its beginnings back when most of us were still driving tootsietoys.


Wave "Rules"

by Dan Woomer, Lost Caravan Corvette Club

The Corvette Wave is an integral part of the mystique and culture of the Corvette owner experience. Corvette owners who wave at fellow Corvette owners when they pass on the road, show a mark of recognition that you are among the elite group of intelligent people who are driving America's True Sports Car. And as a member of this elite group, you should be recognized for your poise and intelligence. So for those who don't know the five simple Corvette Wave rules, here they are:

There is no excuse for not waving at your fellow Corvette owner.

Although most Corvette owners have the class and understanding to accept when their wave is not returned, not waving is a serious breach of proper Corvette etiquette.

Whoever sees the other Corvette first, starts the wave.

There isn't any rule about who waves first. This is simple; if you see another Corvette, wave!

Rules 1 and 2 apply to both sexes.

As far as who starts the wave, it doesn't make a difference if you are a man or women. Rules 1 and 2 apply.

Any type of wave is okay.

Whether you shoot a big wave up through your open Vette top, out the window, or a quick salute with your hand on the steering wheel, any wave that can be seen by the other Corvette driver is okay. However, this does not include any style of jester that can be interpreted as obscene or insulting. Remember, Corvette owners are a class act; while someone might have been rude or stupid to you, try not to return the favor. (This is a tough rule not to break with all the stupid drivers who manage to get a driver's license.)

A late wave is better than no wave.

If you suddenly realize that a Corvette driver is passing and waving at you, get a wave off as soon as possible. The other Corvette driver may see your wave in their rear view mirror and realize that you where just a little late in getting your wave going. Although missing the timing of your wave is a "goof," getting off a wave that the other Corvette driver has a chance to see can acceptably cover this slip-up.

So you can see the underlying concept here is simple: Wave at your fellow Corvette owners, whoever they are, whenever you see them. This will show you are a person who understands the full measure and etiquette that comes with your proud ownership of a Corvette.

Save the Wave!