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View Full Version : Commanderanger- from the Man w/ the a/c 3R5 truck



53k
04-26-2010, 06:30 PM
Under the skin of this stock appearing '48 Commander lies the complete running gear of a Ford Ranger. The owner, Paul Thrush of Catlett, Virginia, is about the cleverest man I know. Several years ago he prepared his 3R5 pickup for our Potomac Chapter Route 66 Trip by putting a 10hp Briggs electric start engine, an a/c compressor and a condensor in a box in the bed of his truck so he could be air conditioned on the long trip (worked beautifully- we knew when he turned on the a/c as we drove from the puff of smoke from the Briggs).
About two years ago he decided to build a Studebaker car to his personal taste- not for show, just for his comfort. He found a solid '48 Commander with a bad engine so he just put the whole body right on a Ford Ranger chassis he had. He wanted the 40s look, but with power steering, a/c, cruise, etc, but wasn't interested in doing rod stuff. He completed the car last year, but was very seriously ill through the fall and winter (lung removed, pneunomia- intensive care for several months). A couple weeks ago he called me and said that he and Dorothy would come see us off at our Spring Tour starting point. Of course were delighted that he was well enough to make it out and he did. When he got to the meeting point I asked him if he would like to tour with us to our lunch stop, about 70 miles away, and he accepted. It turned out this trip was really his first time away from home since his health episode. It did him all of us a lot of good to see him back.
http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Commanderanger/2010%20Spring%20Tour%20025.jpg

Notice the neat job he did in moving the gas door from the rear of the left rear fender to the front of it.
http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Commanderanger/2010%20Spring%20Tour%20024.jpg

http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Commanderanger/2010%20Spring%20Tour%20006.jpg
http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Commanderanger/2010%20Spring%20Tour%20013.jpg
http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Commanderanger/2010%20Spring%20Tour%20001.jpg
http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Commanderanger/2010%20Spring%20Tour%20014.jpg
http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Commanderanger/2010%20Spring%20Tour%20015.jpg
http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Commanderanger/2010%20Spring%20Tour%20016.jpg

Paul Johnson, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia. '64 Daytona Wagonaire, '64 Daytona convertible, '53 Commander Starliner, Museum R-4 engine, '62 Gravely Model L, '72 Gravely Model 430

http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%20broken%20circle.jpghttp://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%201-1-08%20002.jpghttp://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%201-1-08%20004.jpghttp://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%201-1-08%20006.jpg

sweetolbob
04-26-2010, 06:35 PM
Paul

Generally the pickup frame conversions result in an arse high attitude. This one looks just fine. A nice conversion.

It's great that he's recovered so they can enjoy the neat ride.

Thanks for sharing.

Bob

http://i258.photobucket.com/albums/hh263/sweetolbob/P1000416.jpg?t=1227109182, http://i258.photobucket.com/albums/hh263/sweetolbob/IMGP0526-1-1.jpg?t=1271951000

Milaca
04-26-2010, 10:22 PM
I'm very impressed! I would never guess it sat on a pickup chassis. Looks like a perfect mechanical marriage!

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2736/4478293868_83da2fe493_t.jpg
Love birds...Red Hawks in mating season.
In the middle of Minnestudea

Gary1953
04-26-2010, 10:28 PM
I bet that could cruise at highway speeds all day long and be a great ride all the way.
Neat.


http://i98.photobucket.com/albums/l269/gsandes50/116-1-1-1.jpg
Gary Sanders
Nixa, MO
President Toy Studebaker Collectors Club. Have an interest in Toy Studebakers? Contact me for details.

Chris Pile
04-26-2010, 10:44 PM
Excellent!

Chris Pile
http://midwaystudebakers.tripod.com/

studegary
04-27-2010, 03:23 PM
I like the idea and it appears to be nicely done.

On my little notebook screen, it looks like a transverse V6. Are you sure that it is a Ford Ranger?

Gary L.
Wappinger, NY

SDC member since 1968
Studebaker enthusiast much longer

53k
04-27-2010, 03:45 PM
quote:Originally posted by studegary

I like the idea and it appears to be nicely done.

On my little notebook screen, it looks like a transverse V6. Are you sure that it is a Ford Ranger?

As is true of most modern drive trains, you can hardly see the engine for all the clutter, but it is mounted fore and aft. If you look closely at the first engine room picture you can make out one of the valve covers and the alternator is mounted fore and aft as well.



Paul Johnson, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia. '64 Daytona Wagonaire, '64 Daytona convertible, '53 Commander Starliner, Museum R-4 engine, '62 Gravely Model L, '72 Gravely Model 430

http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%20broken%20circle.jpghttp://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%201-1-08%20002.jpghttp://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%201-1-08%20004.jpghttp://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%201-1-08%20006.jpg

studegary
04-27-2010, 04:44 PM
Thanks Paul. My confusion comes from thinking that the first engine picture was taken from the front of the car and not the side which was the case.

Gary L.
Wappinger, NY

SDC member since 1968
Studebaker enthusiast much longer

Warren Webb
04-27-2010, 08:14 PM
I noticed the engine computer mounted in the firewall as if it were factory. Also see how he intergrated the Ranger instrument pod into the Studebaker dash!!! His workmanship is deserving of all praise....no, I take that back....it looks so good, I dont think you could praise him enough! Every photo makes it evident of fine work. I would be honored to be his helper.

60 Lark convertible
61 Champ
62 Daytona convertible
63 G.T. R-2,4 speed
63 Avanti (2)
66 Daytona Sport Sedan

53k
04-27-2010, 08:34 PM
quote:Originally posted by Warren Webb

I noticed the engine computer mounted in the firewall as if it were factory. Also see how he intergrated the Ranger instrument pod into the Studebaker dash!!! His workmanship is deserving of all praise....no, I take that back....it looks so good, I dont think you could praise him enough! Every photo makes it evident of fine work. I would be honored to be his helper.

Thanks for the very kind words. I will pass your comments to him and I'm sure he will be pleased. He is a very modest, soft-spoken man who has led a modest blue collar life. You could call him a CASO because he minimizes the expense and very cleverly utilizes things that wouldn't interest other people. If he pays anyone else to work on his vehicles it is only for machine shop work. Anything else he does himself including painting.
This picture was taken 4/23. Paul and Dorothy are in the middle.
http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Spring%20Tour%202010/2010%20Spring%20Tour%20019.jpg



Paul Johnson, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia. '64 Daytona Wagonaire, '64 Daytona convertible, '53 Commander Starliner, Museum R-4 engine, '62 Gravely Model L, '72 Gravely Model 430

http://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%20broken%20circle.jpghttp://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%201-1-08%20002.jpghttp://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%201-1-08%20004.jpghttp://www.frontiernet.net/~thejohnsons/Forum%20signature%20pix/Copy%20of%201-1-08%20006.jpg