View Full Version : 1960 Lark VIII hard top with 259 3-speed/OD in Issaquah, WA

Mark L
04-29-2017, 04:04 PM
I went to look at this car today. I think it wouldn't take too much to get it running and back on the road, but I have too much on my plate right now, and I'd have to let it sit outside for a while before I could get to it, so I decided to pass on it so that I wouldn't ruin it. The owner allowed me to post the information. PM me if you want his contact information:

Asking price is $2,000. 1960 Lark 2-door hard top, 259 V8 with 3-speed/OD transmission. 61,000+ original miles. One family since new (more on that below). Standard steering and drum brakes all around. s/n 60V-5278, body 60V-J6 645. Sandalwood beige with maroon vinyl seats/door panels and black carpet. Split front bench with headrests and lap belts. Heater, but no radio. Windshield washer. Original owner's manual. It has a trailer hitch below the rear bumper.

Overall, the paint and interior are very good. Nice headliner and package shelf. The door panels look good and are not warped. The floors are solid and undercoated. I couldn't find any rust, and there were no blisters in any of the exterior sheetmetal. Just a little surface rust on the bottom of the drivers door and around the underside of the trunk lid lip. The interior of the trunk had no surface rust that I could see and still had the lining, original jack, tire iron, and cardboard cover over the spare. The doors have no sag.

The engine is not seized, but is currently not running. The insulation on the underside of the hood is partially pulled down/missing as if some mice had gotten into it. I didn't see any rodent damage to the wiring. The top of the grill mesh is pushed back towards the radiator, but does not have any sharp creases. The front left fender is damaged, but down low. The trim is good. The trim at the rear of the front right fender is bent outward at the end. The driver's and passenger door windows roll all the way up and down with no binding. Both rear windows only go down about a half inch before binding real hard, so I couldn't get them down. The driver's seat has some splits opening up in the vinyl, and the edges of the headrests are a little worn. The rest of the seats look great. There is some mold/mildew beginning to grow on the smooth surfaces (door panels, backs of the front seats, dash pad) from sitting closed up for so long, but it looks like it could be easily cleaned IF it doesn't go on much longer. The top of the dash pad is showing it's age from sunlight. The brake pedal goes to the floor with only the return spring providing resistance. The car still has bias ply tires, and they are mostly flat. They look like they are from the late 1960s. There is a hole in the muffler, and it looked like the exhaust pipe was misrouted on it's way up to the engine (it looked to me like it was suspended too low below the frame). Possibly some exhaust work was done on it in the past.

The car was last registered and driven in 2001. Regarding the sellers, the car was purchased new by the wife's grandfather in 1959 (confirmed by the low serial numbers). He stopped driving the car after he damaged the front fender when he was 102 years old :woot:! He passed a few years later. In all, it stayed in his son's garage for a total of 7 years after he stopped driving it. The granddaughter and her husband purchased it at 58,000 miles to keep it in the family. He said it fired right up after sitting for 7 years. They drove it about 4 years/3,000 miles, and it's been parked in their garage for the last 16 years. Doing the math, grandfather bought the car when he was about 70, averaged 2,000 miles per year, and stopped driving the car around 1990. Granddaughter mentioned he rarely took it out on the highway.

The sellers have their house up for sale and are moving to a condo. They won't have a place to park the Lark, so they are selling it. Houses are selling briskly here, so the house probably won't take long to sell (bottom line...the Lark needs to go).

If you buy it, you will need to trailer it home.

I've attached pictures, but some are dark. It was overcast today, and the lighting in the garage wasn't very good.

PM me if you'd like the seller's contact info.


Mark L
04-29-2017, 04:05 PM
Additional photos. Sorry about the poor quality:


04-29-2017, 04:27 PM
Looks like a heck of a deal, Sadly on the wrong side of the country for me. :QQ:

Mark L
04-29-2017, 04:32 PM
Yeah, it was real hard to walk away from this one. :( Too much going on, and our roof has been leaking. We have a roofer coming in the next few weeks to fix it. He gave us an estimate, but I felt I needed to save my cash if anything unexpected is found when the shingles are removed.

04-29-2017, 06:19 PM

Would it be OK for me to add this car to the online registry? Don't want to do it without asking.


04-29-2017, 06:24 PM
I should buy this car as I have the (nearly) perfect left front fender for it. It's any early take-off from a 1959 Lark (yes, the "Studebaker" script would need to be changed).

It's a solid, factory original front fender, with inner fender, headlight panel, undercoating, etc. No rust, even the color appears correct. It would be an easy bolt on switch.

The problem is the logistics of getting a non-running car shipped cross country in a short time-frame.


Mark L
04-29-2017, 06:49 PM
62Champ, I didn't mention anything about the registry to the seller. Right now I think your options would be: A) add it to the registry sans any current ownership information, or B) hold off to see if anyone from the SDC buys it. Either way, we've captured the numbers and we know it exists. That's part of the reason I wanted to go see it (plus see how much work it needed).

dpson, even though the tires are flat, I think they will hold air long enough to get it on a trailer (the rear tires were really low, but not completely flat). The emergency brake was set, and it probably rolls and steers. A shipper would charge extra for a non-operating car, but for $2000 + shipping, it still may be a deal for a Lark that only needs to have a fender replaced to complete the body work. The couple lives less than a mile from exit 22 on I-90.

04-30-2017, 08:20 AM
Looks like a great find, on the wrong coast. But then again maybe that is why it has survived. I dont want this comment to be interpreted as nit picking, but in your engine photo it appears to have more than 2 nuts holding the valve cover and that would lead me to believe that at least the head has been changed to pre 1960. Just thought I would point it out in case a purist is interested. If it were closer, I would buy it.

04-30-2017, 08:54 AM
but in your engine photo it appears to have more than 2 nuts holding the valve cover and that would lead me to believe that at least the head has been changed to pre 1960.

1960 V8s started out with the four bolt valve covers, and at some point, they switched over to the two bolt covers they kept through '64.

Mark L
04-30-2017, 11:01 AM
I did try to get the engine serial number, but I couldn't make it out, and I didn't have anything with me to clean the area.

T.J. lavallee
04-30-2017, 11:41 AM
Sure seems worth fixin', drivin' and showin'. Love these first generation Larks and especially the Hard Tops and convertibles. This one will be a great addition to a collection or considering the low price, a great entrance into the Studebaker hobby. I doubt it'll be available for long!

04-30-2017, 12:02 PM
That Air Cleaner and what we can see of the Carb. looks to me like it has the Optional WCFB Carter 4 barrel, it would not necessarily HAVE to have Dual Exhausts, but could have been ordered. :!:

Mark L
04-30-2017, 03:20 PM
It currently only has a single exhaust. The muffler has a hole in it, and the pipe from the engine back to the muffler is hanging low, like it's damaged or misrouted.

04-30-2017, 03:22 PM
Thanks to 62 Champ for telling me something I did not know about the 1960 V8 engines. I own a 60 and have looked at many others and this is the first time I have seen this style of valve cover. You learn something every day.

04-30-2017, 03:32 PM
Thanks to 62 Champ for telling me something I did not know about the 1960 V8 engines. I own a 60 and have looked at many others and this is the first time I have seen this style of valve cover. You learn something every day.

This information is in the Chassis Parts Catalog. 2 bolt style valve cover used on and after engine V-466,487.
(60V starting engine number V-454,701.)

04-30-2017, 04:38 PM

Tried to send a Pm for information.-Bill
425 413 3958
206 788 7655

Mark L
04-30-2017, 08:24 PM
Bill, I sent you a PM with the info. I also called one of your numbers and left a message.

cultural infidel
05-02-2017, 01:55 PM
Thanks to 62 Champ for telling me something I did not know about the 1960 V8 engines. I own a 60 and have looked at many others and this is the first time I have seen this style of valve cover. You learn something every day.

Yup, learned this one myself about a year ago when I ordered gaskets. I have the early 60 4 bolt version on my wagon as well.

This looks like a solid find for someone. Wish I had the extra cash to splurge on it. The wife would love it.

Mark L
05-07-2017, 07:59 PM
edit - still available.

Mark L
05-12-2017, 06:55 PM
I spoke with the seller today to see if he needed us to pull his ad, but he said the Lark is still available. He said he was able to air up the tires, get it out of the garage, and get it cleaned up. Still not running, but it rolls.

They had multiple bids for the house and selected a winning bid. They need to be out no later than June 30.

Mark L
05-17-2017, 10:17 PM
The seller emailed me today to let me know the car has been sold. A local friend of his bought it. His friend is not a member of the SDC. I told the seller to have his friend contact one of us if he needed anything.

05-18-2017, 12:29 PM
Thanks Mark!

I seriously did some numbers crunching yesterday to see if I could afford to go get this and get it home. My wife would have a kniption, but I want to make sure we save the cars like these, as all original and unique as the 2DHTP is.

Keep us informed if it comes up again.