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JRoberts
03-14-2018, 09:32 AM
What is a Caliper V8? Check it out here: https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/threads/1951-studebaker-commander-v8-convertible-survivor-barn-find.1049778/#post-11903424

BobPalma
03-14-2018, 09:40 AM
:) Joe, "Caliper V8" is a derisive term applied to the Studebaker V-8 engine when the accuser wants to emphasize his opinion that the engine was essentially modeled after the 1949 Cadillac V-8. :yeahright:

The idea was that Studebaker engineers used calipers to measure the Cadillac V-8 and then transferred those measurements to their own drawing boards. It's been awhile since I heard the term, but that's where it came from.

There are plenty of design differences between the two engines to refute this nonsense...but when it comes to derision, facts usually take a back seat. :mad: :cool: BP

52-fan
03-14-2018, 10:11 AM
"Caliper V8" That's a new one on me. I would have just assumed the writer couldn't spell.
BTW I did have to refute the "Studebaker copied Cadillac" myth while talking with an SDC member a few days ago. I was surprised he didn't know better.

jnormanh
03-14-2018, 11:51 AM
"Caliper V8" That's a new one on me. I would have just assumed the writer couldn't spell.
BTW I did have to refute the "Studebaker copied Cadillac" myth while talking with an SDC member a few days ago. I was surprised he didn't know better.

Surely Studebaker designed their own V8. It's also sure that they looked at the Cadillac and Olds V8s too, and saw some things they liked.

Yes, Studebaker designed their own engine, but they weren't blind to the GM engines. To put blinders on would have made no sense.

Along that vein, the famous Offenhauser (originally Miller) engines that dominated open wheel racing in the USA for 50+ years took inspiration from the 1913 Peugeot engine which Harry Miller repaired and maintained at Indianapolis and for a year or two thereafter. Miller didn't copy the Peugeot, but he certainly took inspiration from and improved on it.

We have no idea who invented the first wheel 7000 years ago, but we're still improving on it today.


http://www.azquotes.com/picture-quotes/quote-the-thing-that-hath-been-it-is-that-which-shall-be-and-that-which-is-done-is-that-which-solomon-87-36-66.jpg

WinM1895
03-14-2018, 02:27 PM
:) Joe, "Caliper V8" is a derisive term applied to the Studebaker V-8 engine when the accuser wants to emphasize his opinion that the engine was essentially modeled after the 1949 Cadillac V-8. :yeahright:

The idea was that Studebaker engineers used calipers to measure the Cadillac V-8 and then transferred those measurements to their own drawing boards. It's been awhile since I heard the term, but that's where it came from.

There are plenty of design differences between the two engines to refute this nonsense...but when it comes to derision, facts usually take a back seat. :mad: :cool: BP
Bob, when I pointed out the similarities of the Studebaker vs Cadillac V8 in this forum several months ago and that my dad (an Olds dealer) told me that GM sued, I was shot down by several other members that said Cadillac engineers actually assisted Studebaker in the design.

And, from what I remember reading in mags back then, the Cadillac intake manifold will work on a Studebaker, but the Studebaker intake manifold will not work on a Cadillac.

The Olds 303 cid V8 was introduced one month after the Cadillac 331 cid V8 and AFAIK, shares no design elements excepting both are OHV engines.

The 1955/56 Packard V8's resemble both the Studebaker and Cadillac V8's, but Packard didn't acquire Studebaker (in a stock swap) until late in 1954.

So, what engine (if any) did Packard copy?

TWChamp
03-14-2018, 02:28 PM
Geez........I thought by now everyone knew that Studebaker used AMC V8 engines. LOL

jnormanh
03-14-2018, 04:56 PM
So, what engine (if any) did Packard copy?

Unlikely Packard felt the need to copy anything. It's mostly forgotten now, but Packard was at one time a powerhouse of design and manufacturing.

V12s, V16s designed and built in-house for cars, aircraft, PT boats. Magnificent pieces of machinery. During WII Packard built V12* Rolls-Royce Merlins which powered P-51s. I've read somewhere that Packard, because of their superior manufacturing capability, was able to build that engine using 1/10th the man-hrs Rolls needed.

*During WWII my uncle was a P-51 Squadron leader, flying against the Japanese in China. While attacking a Japanese installation his plane took an AA hit in the engine. One distributor was destroyed, and both oil and coolant lines were severed. On 6 cylinders, and with no oil or coolant that Packard built engine continued to maintain 2000ft altitude for more than an hour and he landed back at base without a scratch.

PackardV8
03-14-2018, 06:13 PM
During WWII, new factories were springing up, existing factories being repurposed and engineers were being shuffled around heavy industry on an "as needed" basis. Also, many engineering hours being billed on cost-plus war projects were actually being used to design the post-WWII OHV8s. GMs Boss Kettering believed 120-octane aviation gasoline would become the standard in passenger cars, because it allowed much higher compression and better performance and had his engineers working on designs for that. Engineers who worked together on one war project might end up back in two different manufacturers design studios after the war, but they had already shared many ideas, including the Kettering directives.

The 1949 Cadillac, 1949 Oldsmobile, 1951 Studebaker and the 1955 Packard are all Generation 1 Kettering designs. They share:
1. Very strong blocks and crankshafts, for the 12:1 compression which never came.
2. Air-gap intake manifold
3. Siamesed center exhaust ports
4. Shaft-mounted rocker arms
5. In-line valves
6. Rear-mounted distributor
7. Separate water pump manifold
8. Long, downward facing exhaust ports.

So yes, there were ideas borrowed and shared; but some ideas are just so right, many good engines share them. The latest GM LS engines designed more than fifty years later are still pushrod 90-degree OHV8s with inline valves.

jack vines
Obsolete Engineering Division
Mager Engine

JRoberts
03-14-2018, 07:22 PM
:) Joe, "Caliper V8" is a derisive term applied to the Studebaker V-8 engine when the accuser wants to emphasize his opinion that the engine was essentially modeled after the 1949 Cadillac V-8. :yeahright:

The idea was that Studebaker engineers used calipers to measure the Cadillac V-8 and then transferred those measurements to their own drawing boards. It's been awhile since I heard the term, but that's where it came from.

There are plenty of design differences between the two engines to refute this nonsense...but when it comes to derision, facts usually take a back seat. :mad: :cool: BP
Thanks for the information, Bob. I knew that a lot of folks think that Studebaker copied the Caddy V8, but had never heard the Caliper comment.

greyben
03-14-2018, 09:24 PM
It was my understanding that Studebaker hired some of the designers of the Olds/Cad engines. Also that this design team returned to GM for the Chevy V8. If this were the case they would indeed be Studebaker employees while employed by Studebaker. Studebaker hadn't designed an engine since 1939 and it seems unlikely they would have retained experts in the field on a permanent basis. In fact they never designed another engine after 1951.

56H-Y6
03-15-2018, 08:52 AM
Hi

Listen to Jack, he knows of what he speaks. So much of what is called copying is simply the cross-pollination of ideas that are best practices or feature which can not be improved upon in a particular design context.

It was less important in those years if the engine was copied from another maker than whether or not a carmaker had an OHV V8 available at all. As the public came view this new engine design as superior and desirable, those carmakers who did not get on board quickly enough were rapidly at a disadvantage in the market. Of course, I'm thinking of Pontiac and Packard here. Both were still fielding straight eights, then in their highest perfected states. For all their smoothness, quietness, longevity and acceptable performance, perception was reality and considered less desirable compared to the V8 available from price-comparable makers. Pontiac had the sales momentum, support and resources of GM to carry it over, Packard did not. The decision by the Packard BoD in 1951 to delay the introduction of the V8 beyond the 1953 model was just one of the critical mistakes that hastened the company's demise.

Steve

WinM1895
03-15-2018, 09:04 AM
Unlikely Packard felt the need to copy anything. It's mostly forgotten now, but Packard was at one time a powerhouse of design and manufacturing.

V12s, V16s designed and built in-house for cars, aircraft, PT boats. Magnificent pieces of machinery. During WII Packard built V12* Rolls-Royce Merlins which powered P-51s. I've read somewhere that Packard, because of their superior manufacturing capability, was able to build that engine using 1/10th the man-hrs Rolls needed.

*During WWII my uncle was a P-51 Squadron leader, flying against the Japanese in China. While attacking a Japanese installation his plane took an AA hit in the engine. One distributor was destroyed, and both oil and coolant lines were severed. On 6 cylinders, and with no oil or coolant that Packard built engine continued to maintain 2000ft altitude for more than an hour and he landed back at base without a scratch.
FDR originally asked Henry Ford (they hated each other) if he would build the RR-Merlin for the British.

The Luftwaffe was bombing their plants on a daily basis, so they needed as US manufacturer to build them, as Merlins were used in Spitfire's and other British planes.

Ford agreed, but for whatever reason, FoMoCo ended up passing. Supposedly Henry Ford could not read a blueprint, FoMoCo's meager engineering staff looked at them, said no.

When Packard received the contract, they made so many design changes that the engine is referred to as the Packard-Merlin. The valve covers have the Packard script on them.

Packard built a new building on the north end of their plant on East Grand for Merlin production. This building was recently restored and leased to a company that stages events.

This building, even though part of the complex, was not included in the sale of the plant to Arte Express.

The Packard plant, as some of you may know, is the largest industrial ruin in the world.

btw: I remember reading somewhere (possibly in Special Interest Autos), that the Cadillac OHV V8 was running on test stands in 1936. The plan was to introduce the engine in 1942, but because of the war, production was delayed until after the war, then was pushed farther ahead to 1949.

8E45E
03-15-2018, 09:28 AM
It was my understanding that Studebaker hired some of the designers of the Olds/Cad engines. Also that this design team returned to GM for the Chevy V8. If this were the case they would indeed be Studebaker employees while employed by Studebaker. Studebaker hadn't designed an engine since 1939 and it seems unlikely they would have retained experts in the field on a permanent basis. In fact they never designed another engine after 1951.

I don't believe Studebaker hired any ex-GM engineers. Studebaker's own engineers, notably, Eugene Hardig tore down the 331 Cadillac engine and used it as a basis for design of the Studebaker V8.

That is one thing I'll never quite figure out was why Studebaker's sales went down in 1951 with that brand new V8 after their phenomenal 1950 sales year. They were the only independent with a thoroughly modern OHV V8 engine and an automatic transmission option which was totally up to industry standards for the time. I know many credit the Korean war with the success of the 1950 models, but the new Commander and Land Cruiser should have kept the sales momentum going.

Craig

WinM1895
03-15-2018, 09:32 AM
How many vehicles did Studebaker sell in 1950, 350,000?

I read this sales figure was based on the fact that people were afraid auto production would be ended due to the Korean War, like it was in February 1942.

Supposedly the 'bullet nose' was a horrid seller on used car lots, then there was the collusion between the Big 3 to junk the independent trade-ins if they were 3 or more years old.

One thing I like about this forum, people here know their stuff! I'm a member of a Ford truck site (ford-trucks.com) that has over 650,000 registered members.

IMO: 99.9% of these members don't know diddly-squat about the history of FoMoCo!

bezhawk
03-15-2018, 10:00 AM
Ford Motors sued the govt after the war for the allies bombing their factories in what became Nazi Germany. Of course these factories were used in production of war goods pitted against the allies. Ford won the law suit, I will always keep this in mind when making a vehicle purchase.

WinM1895
03-15-2018, 10:27 AM
Ford Motors sued the govt after the war for the allies bombing their factories in what became Nazi Germany. Of course these factories were used in production of war goods pitted against the allies. Ford won the law suit, I will always keep this in mind when making a vehicle purchase.
FoMoCo: The Dagenham plant assembled vehicles for the Brits, the Cologne plant assembled vehicles for the Germans.

In the ETO, the Allies and the Axis were driving Ford trucks, while the Russkies were driving 'lend leased' Studebaker trucks.

studegary
03-15-2018, 01:05 PM
How many vehicles did Studebaker sell in 1950, 350,000?

I read this sales figure was based on the fact that people were afraid auto production would be ended due to the Korean War, like it was in February 1942.

Supposedly the 'bullet nose' was a horrid seller on used car lots, then there was the collusion between the Big 3 to junk the independent trade-ins if they were 3 or more years old.

One thing I like about this forum, people here know their stuff! I'm a member of a Ford truck site (ford-trucks.com) that has over 650,000 registered members.

IMO: 99.9% of these members don't know diddly-squat about the history of FoMoCo!

343K cars for model year 1950 and 269K for model year 1951. No subsequent years came close to that.
A better comparison is to look at Commanders alone. There were 73K for 1950 and 124K for 1951. To me, this 70% increase indicates that the OHV V8 was a big help.

JoeHall
03-15-2018, 03:16 PM
Caliper, in this context, is maybe old English?

TWChamp
03-15-2018, 04:47 PM
343K cars for model year 1950 and 269K for model year 1951. No subsequent years came close to that.
A better comparison is to look at Commanders alone. There were 73K for 1950 and 124K for 1951. To me, this 70% increase indicates that the OHV V8 was a big help.

Studebaker beat Ford and Chevy by 3 and 4 years respectively with a modern overhead V8, so I agree that they should have really kept increasing the sales, instead of the steady decline.

BTW, when did Chrysler come out with their first OHV V8?

60ragtop
03-15-2018, 05:03 PM
Studebaker beat Ford and Chevy by 3 and 4 years respectively with a modern overhead V8, so I agree that they should have really kept increasing the sales, instead of the steady decline.

BTW, when did Chrysler come out with their first OHV V8?

1951. 180 hp, 331 c.i.

swvalcon
03-15-2018, 05:13 PM
Tom. 1951 as the first hemi.

TWChamp
03-15-2018, 05:23 PM
OK, thanks guys. I was thinking the hemi came out in 52 or 53. Good to learn something new each day.

bob40
03-15-2018, 05:30 PM
I don't believe Studebaker hired any ex-GM engineers. Studebaker's own engineers, notably, Eugene Hardig tore down the 331 Cadillac engine and used it as a basis for design of the Studebaker V8.

That is one thing I'll never quite figure out was why Studebaker's sales went down in 1951 with that brand new V8 after their phenomenal 1950 sales year. They were the only independent with a thoroughly modern OHV V8 engine and an automatic transmission option which was totally up to industry standards for the time. I know many credit the Korean war with the success of the 1950 models, but the new Commander and Land Cruiser should have kept the sales momentum going.

Craig

If Eugene Hardig tore down a Caddy engine to use as the basis of the Studebaker engine wouldn't that add credence to the claim "Caliper V8"?

studegary
03-15-2018, 09:03 PM
Caliper, in this context, is maybe old English?

Why do you suppose that? Caliper, as a linear measuring instrument or comparative tool, is often used to transfer dimensions from one item to another. That is the reference used here.

JoeHall
03-16-2018, 12:12 AM
Why do you suppose that? Caliper, as a linear measuring instrument or comparative tool, is often used to transfer dimensions from one item to another. That is the reference used here.

Guess I am not the sharpest tool in the shed, and maybe just a bit more of a common person. I woulda used simpler words to accuse one party of copying another. In this case, the alleged copying involved a lot more than linear measurement.

WinM1895
03-16-2018, 12:26 AM
Studebaker beat Ford and Chevy by 3 and 4 years respectively with a modern overhead V8, so I agree that they should have really kept increasing the sales, instead of the steady decline.
Lincoln 317 cid Y block introduced in 1952, 279 cid & 317 cid derived versions also installed in 1952 F8/F9 trucks. Ford/Merc Y blocks introduced in 1954.

What sounded the death knell for the independents was the Ford Blitz of 1953/54. In an effort to regain the #1 sales position, "The Deuce" shipped truckloads of new cars to dealers whether they ordered them or not...and the dealers had to pay for them with cash when they arrived.

It wasn't too long that every Ford dealers sales lots were choked with new cars and in order to get rid of them, dealers were forced to sell them at huge discounts, some dealers selling them for what they paid for them.

The independents had nothing to counter this Blitz with, the independents also suffered because it cost them more per unit to assemble a car than GM, Ford & Chrysler.

By 1954, Studebaker was bleeding red ink, Hudson was basically out of business due to awful sales of the Jet, plus they had lost their body maker.

Packard was in the same boat because Briggs was also their body maker, but Chrysler bought Briggs in 1953, then told Hudson & Packard they'd make bodies for them in 1954, then they'd have to find another body maker or make their own.

Hudson merged with Nash to form AMC and we know what happened to Studebaker and Packard.

55 56 PREZ 4D
03-16-2018, 02:17 PM
FoMoCo: The Dagenham plant assembled vehicles for the Brits, the Cologne plant assembled vehicles for the Germans.

In the ETO, the Allies and the Axis were driving Ford trucks, while the Russkies were driving 'lend leased' Studebaker trucks.

What is ETO ?

StudeNewby
03-16-2018, 02:31 PM
What is ETO ?

European Theater of Operations.