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6hk71400
06-19-2017, 11:35 PM
Seeing a few posts about beaters and one of the finest got me to thinking: what is the lowest car on the Studebaker food chain?
I think everyone is pretty much in agreement of the R1,R2,R3,R4 models, President Four Season Roadster or and Classic Car Club Studebaker but what do you consider the absolute lowest model Studebaker?

Would you past up a 1953 Studebaker 4 door Champion? Let's say no rust dry but still usable interior and a free engine. How about a 1958 Champion 4 door with an automatic?

As the pool of cars that can be saved dwindles, are we going to let them go? Now of course a shell of a car that would let another Studebaker live again is not what I am talking about. Would it be better to let the lower cars go to the rat rod modified etc group? Again, how many will end up as a project in pieces to do a frame off the 57 Scotsman that stalls and will never be on the road again.

10 years ago I had an R1 4 door cruiser with the gauge package but several people sniffed at it and said "Oh it's a 4 door" The car came out of Bakersfield from the dealer that specialized in Hi Po Studebakers.

I know we can't save them all, but the bread and butter cars were for years what kept Studebaker going.

Thought?

Bob Miles
Tucson AZ

parts
06-20-2017, 12:03 AM
Bob

I see all manner of low end cars being saved here in Tucson. I was parked by a young guy with a 63 Falcon 4dr and a 71 Buick Wagon..a couple of 4 door Corvairs..things I would not even look at except as a winter beater back in Chicago,, I was always 2 door guy for American cars..(Jaguars 3.4 or 3.8 sedans are always in my mind). I think the young guys ar so used to 4 doors from all the newer cars that they dob't think of them as we did.
I haven't seen a Scotsman or any 4 door Studes at all newer then 1950 in town. I always liked Conestoga 2 doors and wanted to make (horrors ! ) a restomod
http://studebakerconestoga.com/members/1954_Thiele.jpg (The Studebaker Conestoga Owner Registry )
Do you ever get out to Little Anthony's car shows ? Every two weeks on Saturday evening. A couple shows ago there were 5 Studebakers..)out of the 150 or so cars). My 53. and friend who just got a 54 coupe and a Hawk and two trucks..it was like unusual as I am usually the only Stude at these type shows..
Mine needs me to rebuild the power steering leak,,and the idiot who designed my home UH ME..made a west facing garage,,

113* today,,

6hk71400
06-20-2017, 12:13 AM
I was out there today for a board meeting. I unveiled the chapter website that went live at 9am this morning. One of our member's cars is like yours only maroon and is featured on members cars page on our website

I haven't be to Little Anthony's in some time but will try to make it out there. It is not too far from the house. We are also planning an outing to a new restaurant called Even Stevens. New place that is in a former Studebaker Dealer. More to come on our website.

So thinking about the 53 4 door I may go look at it but only before 9am in the morning.

Thanks for your input.

Bob Miles
Tucson AZ

parts
06-20-2017, 12:21 AM
I saw the maroon on your new web site..the Tourmaster and President also. Very sharp cars,, A friend told me about Even Stevens just last week.

Milaca
06-20-2017, 12:23 AM
To me, a 1958 Champion Scotsman is the lowliest of all Studebakers and I have no desire to ever own one, but I appreciate the persons that keep theirs on the road.
As for 4-door sedans, I happen to like the 1953-55 and the 1959-1965 4-door sedans but I prefer them with a V8.

nwi-region-rat
06-20-2017, 01:11 AM
To me, a 1958 Champion Scotsman is the lowliest of all Studebakers and I have no desire to ever own one, but I appreciate the persons that keep theirs on the road.
As for 4-door sedans, I happen to like the 1953-55 and the 1959-1965 4-door sedans but I prefer them with a V8.


So.....if you find one......I'll gladly take it..... My first choice car...make a real sleeper out of that....

sals54
06-20-2017, 01:40 AM
My vote would go to a 62 4 door Lark, 6 cyl 3 spd w/o overdrive. Sorry for owners of said machine, but its just my opinionations.

Jett289
06-20-2017, 01:58 AM
I'm thinking the first year of the Scotsman was a very cheap car with no options . Didn't they just have one sun visor for the driver ?
Even went as far as just having dual headlights mounted in the not so nice quad headlight buckets. I'm always interested in seeing these cars at the shows and they seem to get a lot of looks . Plain and simple !!

StudeRich
06-20-2017, 02:28 AM
I'm thinking the first year of the Scotsman was a very cheap car with no options . Didn't they just have one sun visor for the driver ?
Even went as far as just having dual headlights mounted in the not so nice quad headlight buckets. I'm always interested in seeing these cars at the shows and they seem to get a lot of looks . Plain and simple !!

NO, if it had Quad Headlight Pods without the 4 Headlight option (2 headlights) it would be a '58 Champion (with Fins).

The '57 and '58 Scotsmans were very much alike, no fins etc. with subtle minor changes like Round Taillights, a New Grille and later '58 models have no Fresh Air Doors in the Fenders like their nicer '58 brothers, the cooling Air enters through the Grille.

The whole POINT was to be CHEAP, Cheap, cheap, the LOWEST priced full sized American Cars, yes a right Visor and Armrest and Rears were optional, as were 2 speed Electric Wipers, but a simple Box Heater was Standard, so they could advertise it as "Factory Equipped", not stripped! :D
The Headliners were not Vinyl or Cloth, they were a Burlap course material that appeared to be Gunnysack.

You got Body Color PAINTED Hub Caps and FIVE Tires and Wheels... STANDARD! :rolleyes: Including a one model only, lay down Spare! :ohmy:

The Optional "Champion Custom" type body side moulding Kit included a Gas Door Guard, Door Handle Guards, and the spoked type (Hawk) Wheelcovers if you wanted it to be SUPER Fancy!
That was how the Dealer Dad worked for equipped some of them, so I am not sure if ALL Dealers did the Wheelcovers with the "Package".

StudeRich
06-20-2017, 02:45 AM
I am with Sal on the '62 Lark 4 Door, Deluxe 6 Cyl. being the worst looking, it was STILL a Great running Car just not those ridiculous long rear doors with the long, leaking air and water, rattling windows. :(

Sorry owners.

64918 Not even CLOSE to as Ugly as a Pontiac Aztec though! :mad:

8E45E
06-20-2017, 07:34 AM
The whole POINT was to be CHEAP, Cheap, cheap, the LOWEST priced full sized American Cars, yes a right Visor and Armrest and Rears were optional, as were 2 speed Electric Wipers, but a simple Box Heater was Standard, so they could advertise it as "Factory Equipped", not stripped! The Headliners were not Vinyl or Cloth, they were a Burlap course material that appeared to be Gunnysack. You got Body Color PAINTED Hub Caps and FIVE Tires and Wheels... STANDARD!

The Scotsman was made too cheap in many places, where it did not stand up; the cardboard door panels being a prime area. Once they got wet for the first time, they would wrinkle, and remain that way. A layer of vinyl covering them or thin steel like in the trucks would have made them hold up better.

Craig

64studeavanti
06-20-2017, 08:37 AM
Not sure what lowest on the food chain means, but in my opinion, the least desirable is 59 & 60 Lark 4 door, flat six and 3 on the tree. Not that these were necessarily bad cars. But they made so many that they have little value. This is not unlike the grocery getters of other makes.

DieselJim
06-20-2017, 08:49 AM
To me, a 1958 Champion Scotsman is the lowliest of all Studebakers and I have no desire to ever own one, but I appreciate the persons that keep theirs on the road.
As for 4-door sedans, I happen to like the 1953-55 and the 1959-1965 4-door sedans but I prefer them with a V8.


So.....if you find one......I'll gladly take it..... My first choice car...make a real sleeper out of that....Saw a 55 4 door in Desert Valley Auto Parts in Maricopa Az. last week from the road. Don't know anything about it.

BILT4ME
06-20-2017, 09:19 AM
When people ask about my Lark, I typically describe it as the "Ford Escort" of Studebaker. Lots made for a low price car and low desirability, basically a throw-away car.

I love my Lark BECAUSE it's different AND few others collect them. Yes, I still like to grinch and moan because no one makes T-shirts or pins, or cool "stuff" that depicts the Larks, only the Avantis and Hawks and GT Hawks.

I have to agree that any Lark 59-62 4 door, flat six, 3 on the tree w/o OD (poverty pack) is the least desirable of the model. They were also some of the highest quantities made (StudeRich chime in here to confirm....) so the highest production numbers mean the lowest "perceived value" on cars.

On the Hot Rod Power Tour this year, the Wagons are coming out of the woodwork so to speak. Wagons are the big popular thing to create an LS something powered XXX Wagon that will run 13's in the quarter, but leave them stock plain so they are sleepers and have "patina", even if you have to manufacture the patina. (Yech!)

Real patina takes YEARS to develop, and little money.

The manufactured patina takes DAYS to develop and LOTS of money.

Right now, if people want a cheap car, buy the 4-door Larks from 59-62, yank out the engine and driveline, install an LT4, with a 700R4 and a Ford 9" rear with a Detroit in it, and you'll be golden. Pull the frame and reinforce (or replace it entirely) and clean up, change it to a 4-link with bags and a FatMan front suspension with R&P steering, slam it with bags on all four corners, then some 20's with rubber bands on solid painted wheels and you'll be right in style. Install some Dakota Digital Gauges.

Leave all the rust holes big enough to throw a chicken through.....

If you haven't seen it, look up RoadKill Hot Rods.

Bordeaux Daytona
06-20-2017, 10:16 AM
'61 Larks are the Rodney Dangerfield of Studebakers, No Respect. :(

RadioRoy
06-20-2017, 06:43 PM
Not sure what lowest on the food chain means, but in my opinion, the least desirable is 59 & 60 Lark 4 door, flat six and 3 on the tree. Not that these were necessarily bad cars. But they made so many that they have little value. This is not unlike the grocery getters of other makes.

The value would go down further if that Champion six was coupled to an automatic transmission.

JRoberts
06-20-2017, 07:14 PM
Over the years I have seen several '59-'60 Lark four doors that I would have loved to have. Those cars with a V-8 (a Studebaker is plenty good enough) and manual tranny, can be quite the performance car.
My '65 Cruiser is not what I was looking for at the time, but it was a one owner car (My uncle bought it new) and I wanted to keep it in the family. It's 283 has been modified a bit and it has a 700r4 transmission. It has Turner discs on the front, quick steering arms, oversized sway bars front and rear. It has been lowered a bit. It handles great has quite a bit of power, or at least enough for what it is. I originally had begun to look for a nice two door post to be outfitted like the Cruiser is now, but I really think the Cruiser was my better choice. I can easily take all three of my granddaughters for a ride, it performs great and there are not many four doors around (of any make) like it.
I see more and more classic four doors on the road. They traditionally are less expensive than their two door cousins, they are available and well....why not a four door?:!:

jclary
06-20-2017, 08:04 PM
As far as "less than desirable"...the disposable, and easy to discard cars, I would nominate "fleet" cars. Seems as the nation transitioned from its wartime economy, not just Studebaker, but other car makers engaged in some fierce competition for large orders of utility fleet vehicles to supply local, state and federal government agencies. Basic utility vehicles, with cut down or deleted ornaments, dog dish hubcaps, no radios, etc. I have seen some of the stripped down Studebaker former fleet cars that did not even have a dome light.

I took drivers ed in high school in the early 1960's. The car was a '59 flathead six Plymouth with dual controls. It did have turn signals, (of course), but very little else. I believe it was Plymouth's version of a fleet car. Sometimes, I wonder if the companies competing for the order, were more interested in keeping the competition from getting the business instead of making a profit on the sale of the cars. Perhaps banking on selling maintenance parts to make up for the margin on the cars. You would see these cars with cheap rubber mats instead of carpeted floor coverings, painted headlight, taillight rings, etc.

64V19816
06-20-2017, 11:02 PM
Very few plain Jane 1965 and to a lesser extent 1966 models survived low numbers made, bad resale and that "chevybaker" thing Hardig's unique adaption parts made sure a lot of chevybakees made parts car status

Scott
06-21-2017, 12:46 AM
I don't know, Sal. This one looks pretty nice.
64939
http://topclassiccarsforsale.com/studebaker/302604-1962-studebaker-lark-4-door-hard-top.html

My vote would go to a 62 4 door Lark, 6 cyl 3 spd w/o overdrive. Sorry for owners of said machine, but its just my opinionations.

sals54
06-21-2017, 01:34 AM
I don't know, Sal. This one looks pretty nice.
64939
http://topclassiccarsforsale.com/studebaker/302604-1962-studebaker-lark-4-door-hard-top.html

Yeah... I'll have to admit that one is pretty. My comment was for the general state of said model. The vast majority of them are run down, beaters. Thats why they chose it for the smog commercial back in the day, and isn't it the model they dropped off a building?

HOXXOH
06-21-2017, 02:02 AM
I once had a '63 2-dr 6 cyl, 3 speed (no OD),with cardboard door panels, no back seat, one sun visor, no radio, no heater, no glove box, and not even one emblem or script on the exterior. It was a perfect candidate for car show competition, since there wasn't much there to deduct points from. It ran well and had no damage of any kind. The biggest problem was I didn't have, nor could I get without great expense, a title. It was abandoned and the State (nor I) had any way to contact the owner. The State wanted a $2000 bond to hold for 6 months before they'd issue a title, so I dismantled it instead.
It was painted battleship grey that reminded me of a military purchased vehicle. I remember driving a bare bones '57 Chevy during my Army service in the early '60's, so maybe this was an ex Navy vehicle from the nearby Navy Air base that closed about 1966. Do any production records show military purchases?

showbizkid
06-21-2017, 02:25 AM
I once had a '63 2-dr 6 cyl, 3 speed (no OD),with cardboard door panels, no back seat, one sun visor, no radio, no heater, no glove box, and not even one emblem or script on the exterior. It was a perfect candidate for car show competition, since there wasn't much there to deduct points from. It ran well and had no damage of any kind. The biggest problem was I didn't have, nor could I get without great expense, a title. It was abandoned and the State (nor I) had any way to contact the owner. The State wanted a $2000 bond to hold for 6 months before they'd issue a title, so I dismantled it instead.
It was painted battleship grey that reminded me of a military purchased vehicle. I remember driving a bare bones '57 Chevy during my Army service in the early '60's, so maybe this was an ex Navy vehicle from the nearby Navy Air base that closed about 1966. Do any production records show military purchases?

with the exception of the paint color and the 6-cyl., sounds like my '63 Standard.

GrumpyOne
06-21-2017, 12:22 PM
The value would go down further if that Champion six was coupled to an automatic transmission.


My old Lark was a '63 four door six cylinder automatic with a cracked head but totally rust free.

Removed the entire drive line, installed a low mileage 259 automatic with a 3.07 TT rear with up graded front springs, air shocks in the rear and it was a "movin' machine!" I hate to admit as to how many motor mounts that I broke using the "floor it" first gear start! Had the timing advanced as far as possible using premium gas. Of course premium was about 98ยข back then... And, if you kept your foot out of it, mileage of 24mpg was possible!

riversidevw
06-21-2017, 12:38 PM
As far as "less than desirable"...the disposable, and easy to discard cars, I would nominate "fleet" cars. Seems as the nation transitioned from its wartime economy, not just Studebaker, but other car makers engaged in some fierce competition for large orders of utility fleet vehicles to supply local, state and federal government agencies. Basic utility vehicles, with cut down or deleted ornaments, dog dish hubcaps, no radios, etc. I have seen some of the stripped down Studebaker former fleet cars that did not even have a dome light.

I took drivers ed in high school in the early 1960's. The car was a '59 flathead six Plymouth with dual controls. It did have turn signals, (of course), but very little else. I believe it was Plymouth's version of a fleet car. Sometimes, I wonder if the companies competing for the order, were more interested in keeping the competition from getting the business instead of making a profit on the sale of the cars. Perhaps banking on selling maintenance parts to make up for the margin on the cars. You would see these cars with cheap rubber mats instead of carpeted floor coverings, painted headlight, taillight rings, etc.

Similar recollections from 1959-60 of a truly wretched bare-bones '57 Ford six sedan owned by the school district and used for driver training at the high school in Manhattan Beach, CA. Dual controls, three on the tree and basic lights. Nothing else. Obviously a "low bid" situation. Despised by everyone who dealt with it. Instructor/assistant coach not a car guy, thought it was "maybe a '49." Local Ford dealer decided to donate a loaded new '59 Galaxie 500. Only thing that prevented a generation of Mira Costa grads from boycotting Fords for life.

That awful Ford fleet clunker left me with a bad attitude towards 3-speed column shift cars, unless attached to something really interesting like a 352 V8 or a nine main bearing straight-eight.

greyben
06-21-2017, 12:42 PM
About 1986 I purchased a '63 Standard 2 door with OD. The previous owner had just had the engine rebuilt, but then gave up. I upgraded the interior so at least it looked decent inside. The outside was a little rough. The first thing I noticed about the car was excessive body roll on even slight turns. It was built without a front stabilizer bar. A stabilizer from a V8 fixed that. It was a pretty unmemorable car, but it got good gas mileage and even with 6 passengers and a trunk of luggage it had no problem running 70 on the freeway. I think a Standard would rate lower than a Scotsman. I wouldn't mind having one to drive a round today.

8E45E
06-21-2017, 02:24 PM
I once had a '63 2-dr 6 cyl, 3 speed (no OD),with cardboard door panels, no back seat. It was painted battleship grey that reminded me of a military purchased vehicle.

That's too bad it was parted out, as it sounded like it was an interesting, special-order Stude.

Craig

JoeHall
06-21-2017, 02:40 PM
Six cylinder Studes most always have front suspensions that are in real good condition. Everything, except the anti-sway bar and springs will swap directly over to a V8 Stude. So they are a good source for V8 front end parts. Though I know lots of folks are fond of their six cylinder Studes.

Scott
06-21-2017, 04:07 PM
The plus side of sixes is that you can often get them cheaper and the sheet metal is generally the same as the V8 cars, so they look just as cool. If you're at a car show the car is sitting anyway, so who cares how fast it can go??

T.J. lavallee
06-23-2017, 12:42 AM
Frankly I don't consider any Studebaker a "bottom feeder." I find them all fascinating.

sals54
06-23-2017, 12:59 AM
Yeah... I'll have to admit that one is pretty. My comment was for the general state of said model. The vast majority of them are run down, beaters. Thats why they chose it for the smog commercial back in the day, and isn't it the model they dropped off a building?

I just checked youtube... and sure enough... it was a 62 4 door they dropped off the building. A Mobil ad promoting safety. Funny thing though, the car had Avanti wheel covers.

Blue 15G
06-23-2017, 08:13 AM
Frankly I don't consider any Studebaker a "bottom feeder." I find them all fascinating.

I agree with T.J. I like the "loaded" Studebakers, the cheap models, and everything in between!