View Full Version : 51 V8 Oil Pan

01-20-2006, 07:49 PM
Can anyone tell me if an oil pan from a 62 259 V8 will work in place of the oil pan on my 51 Commander? I tried to patch some pin holes in the bottom of it today and all I do is make it leak worse. I am working on the car with the engine in it, so it is hard to tell if there are clearance issues. I know The 62 pan is slightly flatter on the bottom and the oil drains from the rear instead of the middle. Also if I am not mistaken it holds 1 quart less oil. Anyone do this swap before? If so what are the issues?

01-20-2006, 08:39 PM
I don't know if it will physically fit or not, but in any case you will have to R&R the pan, even if just to have your old one brazed up. I think you will have to remove the bellcrank from the center pivot and maybe even drop the center pivot out of the frame to gain clearance to do this.

good luck


55 Commander Starlight
62 Daytona hardtop

01-20-2006, 09:03 PM
The pan will fit. You will need to drop the center pivot to remove and replace the pan. Don't take the steering apart, or you will have to realign the front when you are done. You may have to change from the early oil pump to the later one, as I don't think the oil pickup fron the early pump will fit. Just use an oil pump and pickup from a 1955 or newer engine, everything from the block down. It's a better pump anyway, and easier to work with.

01-20-2006, 09:22 PM
Wacker is right on there, Stude used 3 different pans. The early 51-54
pans are 7 1/4" deep and 7 1/2" X 15" in sump. The 55 up pans are 8 1/4" deep and 7 1/2" X 9" in sump. There is a difference in the pump and pick up too. So you will need the newer pump and pick up too. And then the R motors are another story.

01-20-2006, 09:36 PM
And the c/K models in 53 used a different pan; shallower with a longer sump. You can't drop a 51 coupe engine into a 53 coupe without changing the pan, oil pump and dipstick. Same goes for swapping a Lark V8 into a C or K.

01-20-2006, 09:54 PM
If it were my 51 Commander (I do have one, coincidentally) I'd get the old pan repaired at the local machine shop and keep the setup stock if your pump functions near specs. IMHO I don't think mongrelizing your lube system will result in sufficient benefit to justify the process. (Brakes, probably another matter...but at least that mod should be more obvious and easily spotted by subsequent owners or mechanics.

I make this point because a prior owner had mods done and didn't tell me-- the results were scary and almost spectacular.

51 Commander State Sedan

Kittanning, PA

01-20-2006, 10:05 PM
The pan is going to be off anyway. Get it very, very clean and very dry and either braze or JB Weld, or a combination.

01-21-2006, 12:13 AM
If this is the first time you have pulled the oil pan on a 51, there are a few things to watch out for. Remove the center pivot completely. This is kind of tricky - there are 4 bolts with nuts at the corners, but there is also a grease zerk facing aft in the middle. The zerk must be removed before the unit will come out. The best way I've found is with a deep socket through the access hole. Incidently. this zerk is often missed when lubing the car. I think Ray (Studeman) has rebuild instructions on his website if you need them. The big shoulder bolt that holds the center arm needs to be removed completely, you can't just loosen it up. The pivot is grooved and the shoulder bolt fits into the groove. Then just pull the front steering apparatus back and off to one side. You will also need to remove the starter and the exhaust crossover. After that, it is pretty straight forward. Putting it back on is the fun part! Getting it on so it doesn't leak is a trick, but it can be done.

01-21-2006, 08:16 AM
Sorry I did not make myself totally clear. I have the pan off already. I was patching with braze and the bottom is so thin I keep making more leaks.Thin from rust that is. Any suggestions other than the shop manual for reinstalling the pan.

01-21-2006, 04:13 PM
Where are you at Kurt? If you are close to L.A. I could help. But the more braze that you put in there the worse you will make it for me to repair.

01-21-2006, 08:33 PM
I am in central IL Thanks anyway. I did finally did get it to stop leaking. After I brazed I coated it with JB weld, and that did the trick. Any tips for reinstalling?