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View Full Version : Squirlly steering '62 Champ longbed



studeclunker
03-29-2007, 01:10 AM
Mr. Ed has taken to... wandering whilst going down the road. It's especially noticable if there's a raised ridge in the road or if I happen to allow him to graze the dots. I'm planning on rebuilding the front end. What should I be looking for?

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/december%2006/HPIM0234.jpg http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/56%20Parkview%20Wagon/56wagonleftfrontclipped-1.jpg
Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
Lotsa Larks!
K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
Ron Smith
Where the heck is Lewiston, CA?

StudeRich
03-29-2007, 11:08 AM
Ron here's my list of the most common causes of "wandering" from most important on down:

1. Play in STEERING GEAR!

2. Loose/worn reach rods ends/tie rod ends

3. Not enough Toe in (not enough negative caster will also cause this)

4. Bias Ply tires

StudeRich
Studebakers Northwest
Ferndale, WA

Roscomacaw
03-29-2007, 11:16 AM
Squirrly Steering - what should I look for???

Ron, if by chance you used ANY Acorn nuts when working on this truck, check to see that they're still in place![:0] If the squirrels have stolen them, it could lead to disaster! [xx(]

Miscreant adrift in
the BerStuda Triangle
http://images.andale.com/f2/115/106/906179/2006/12/7/truckonhill3.jpg

1957 Transtar 1/2ton
1960 Larkvertible V8
1958 Provincial wagon
1953 Commander coupe

kamzack
03-29-2007, 11:30 AM
Hey StudeClunk,
Having been involved in the total restoration of a 62 Champ, and a former owner of a 64 Champ(one of 1230), I've had enough experience with them to be dangerous. I'd start with the steering box and adjust the worm gear just a bit at a time. You'll see a nut with a center bolt that's slotted. Loosen the nut and turn bolt in a little at a time. I'd change the gear oil while you're there, calls for 90wt with a good ep package. Next, the obvious, tie rod ends on all components. Then check for kingpin slop by jacking wheels off the ground,check for movement top to bottom. King pins are not as difficult as they may appear to R&R. The trick is honeing the bosses after new bushing installation,so they go in without force, use a good quality litium complex grade 2 grease, do not over hone. This can be done with a reamer, but a wheel cyclinder hone reduces over cutting may take longer, but worth the effort and smoother. trial fit un til pins go in with limited effort. Studebaker changed Steering boxes for the 63/64 models as the 62,61,60 was a little weak.Also moved leaf spring shackles from front of axel to rear,lessening the shock to steering. Earlier Steering pitman arm moved side to side with output shaft pointing somewhat downward, which made steering a bit harder as time and use evolved. 63/64 pitman arm moved front to back, output shaft parrell to ground giving more push/pull torque. 63/64 had bigger brakes along with moving M/C to the firewall and incorperating a swing pedal assembly.If I was doing a Champ again, I'd install all new tie rod ends and kingpins for peace of mind. Replace leaf spring shackle bushings don't skip this step, they may look ok but new is better and you're already have it part this far,so. Lastly, I'd run radial tires, don't care who says what, radials won't climb ridges or give you the performance you've addressed. Hope this helps. I've stuck my neck out here before and gotten it nearly cut off, so, responders and readers remember what we learned when we were children,"if ya can't say anything good, Keep quiet". Golden rule applies to adults too.
Thanks for letting me share.
Kim

Roscomacaw
03-29-2007, 11:42 AM
Kim, I'm "neckless". Don't care.;) The 8Es (63-64s) had "improved" steering geometry and it truly WAS an improvement over the earlier arrangment. But that aluminum steering box was not meant for longevity. It's getting tough to find a useable one or even parts to fix one.
Too bad Stude treated their truck line like a stepchild in the end. They could've had a great line of trucks without too much investment. The Champs are nice, but underneath it all, they're still basically the 2Rs of 10 years earlier![:I]

Miscreant adrift in
the BerStuda Triangle
http://images.andale.com/f2/115/106/906179/2006/12/7/truckonhill3.jpg

1957 Transtar 1/2ton
1960 Larkvertible V8
1958 Provincial wagon
1953 Commander coupe

stuvw2mny
03-29-2007, 04:10 PM
This subject comes up time and again, usually followed with reams of advise about front end rebuilds. With many Stude vehicles now over 40 years old it is natural to do this, and many of them do suffer from some problem. And then there are the owners who just want the work (I wouldn't call it fun!) of rebuilding the front suspension. But, sometimes it is only loose bolts or mounts. So a first step is to check that everything in the front suspension is tight and greased.

I notice you said the vehicle was wandering, and that you didn't say anything about steering problems nor front-end looseness. Before (or after) spending tons of money and time on the front end, take a look at the rear springs, shackles and shocks. Most of them are worn out and new shackles and bushings go far to decrease road wander. Much cheaper and easier to fix!

Finally, radial tires!!!! Bias-ply tires are for trailers!!! (Unless you like listening to crystal radios.)

Roscomacaw
03-29-2007, 04:30 PM
Ahhh..... someone who speaks my mind. BEFORE you just throw money at it, find out WHAT is wrong with it. It may well be that 50 years have passed since this truck had this or that, new, in it's make-up. and then again - maybe not![:0]
I recently had a friend come to me for some good, used spindles for his Stude truck. I had 3 or 4 1/2ton front axles layin' in the "axle pile" out back. I went and took the first one that I found and hauled it to the shop for dismantling. I got a punch and hammer and drove out the first lock pin. I went to the other end and drove it's lock pin out as well. By now I'd handled both spindles and it struck me that they sure weren't sloppy like I'd expect them to be. I walked back over to the axle pile and tried another two axles to see what their knuckles felt like. THEY flopped around a good bit! Hmmmmmmm...
I hauled one of THEM to the shop and scavenged IT for parts. Wouldn't make good sense to dissect an axle that had nice, tight kingpins and bushings in it! Pete may want a transplant some day!

My point here is, tho I treated this first axle as if it had come from some tired old truck - SOMEONE had had it rebuilt before whatever fate befell the truck that ultimately led to me being custodian of this axle. Probably, I got it from a hot rod project. I will never remember because I've gotten several "donations" like this thru the years. It's like this Wagonaire that followed me home. Five years from now I'll have forgotten about it altogether.
Anyways, check to see stuff actually NEEDS replacing before ordering new pieces.;)

Miscreant adrift in
the BerStuda Triangle
http://images.andale.com/f2/115/106/906179/2006/12/7/truckonhill3.jpg

1957 Transtar 1/2ton
1960 Larkvertible V8
1958 Provincial wagon
1953 Commander coupe

studeclunker
03-29-2007, 10:52 PM
I agree whole heartedly, Mr. Biggs. The idea of this thread was soliciting what to look for. I've already jacked it up and looked at the linkage and various parts. The king pins look ok, the cross arms look a bit loose, but only a bit. There seems to be a bit of play from the steering box. The springs are completely shot, front and rear. In fact, the front springs were bowed the wrong way. I had to put overloads front and rear to push the truck back up to it's proper height. 'course, now it rides like an old 1ton. A real kidney bouncer, as my dad used to call them.[:0][xx(]

I'll look at the bushings for both front and rear springs. With the helper, or overload, springs taking a large portion of the weight, worn out bushings could allow too much play in the suspension. likely, it's a combination of things. This truck hasn't had proper maintenance in several decades, if ever.[}:)][V]

Does anyone know where I could get new springs for this truck? I know, dream on.[8] Still, one can hope...;)

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/december%2006/HPIM0234.jpg http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/56%20Parkview%20Wagon/56wagonleftfrontclipped-1.jpg
Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
Lotsa Larks!
K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
Ron Smith
Where the heck is Lewiston, CA?

John Kirchhoff
03-30-2007, 08:48 AM
Well Mr. Biggs, either no one else caught your acorn nut pun or they woke up on the wrong side of the bed. Personally, I thought that pun rated a 9.7 for creativity, a 9.4 for delivery and a 9.9 for corniness! Good job!

studeclunker
03-30-2007, 11:14 AM
Yeah, I caught it too, John. Actually, the bed of this truck was completely full of oak leaves when I took it home. It had spent twenty years under the same tree. Believe it or not, the tires were still aired up. I guess there's some advantage to the old tubed tires. I'll take it as a good thing that there were no acorns in it. So, it may be squirlly, but at least it's not nutty.

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/december%2006/HPIM0234.jpg http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/56%20Parkview%20Wagon/56wagonleftfrontclipped-1.jpg
Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
Lotsa Larks!
K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
Ron Smith
Where the heck is Lewiston, CA?

Transtar60
03-30-2007, 11:26 AM
Clunker,
SASCO can probably hook you up with springs for your truck.
Couple years back, I got new rear HD springs for my 8E12 from SASCO.
The way I read the parts books, the 8E trucks, the HD springs for 1/2tons are the standard springs for 3/4 tons,
so maybe it would be possible to build a Super Heavy Duty half ton using HD springs for a 3/4 ton. Course it would probably ride like a deuce and a half.

IF SASCO cannot help, check the vendors list, and/or do a google for spring manufactuers, Eaton Spring is one that comes to mind.
I bought all new springs for a 59 Lark from them.


http://racingstudebakers.com/coppermine/albums/userpics/10056/5E13%20Pic%203.JPG
3E38
4E2
4E28
5E13
7E7
8E7
8E12
8E28
4E2
59 Lark
etc

Roscomacaw
03-30-2007, 12:03 PM
Thanks John! I guess I know how someone like Jay Leno feels when one of his jokes bombs.[V]

I too, thought it was a zinger.[:0] I guess it didn't get much comment because the majority here wouldn't expect anything less from such a "nut job" as me.[8]

Miscreant adrift in
the BerStuda Triangle
http://images.andale.com/f2/115/106/906179/2006/12/7/truckonhill3.jpg

1957 Transtar 1/2ton
1960 Larkvertible V8
1958 Provincial wagon
1953 Commander coupe

Roscomacaw
03-30-2007, 12:06 PM
BTW, Clunk,
Somewhere around here, I have a "spec sheet" regarding Stude truck springs. If need be, I could come up with such so a spring shop could make new ones.
I've thought about havin' new front springs made for Pete. Last I checked, no NOS ones or repros were out there.

Miscreant adrift in
the BerStuda Triangle
http://images.andale.com/f2/115/106/906179/2006/12/7/truckonhill3.jpg

1957 Transtar 1/2ton
1960 Larkvertible V8
1958 Provincial wagon
1953 Commander coupe

mapman
03-30-2007, 02:38 PM
Since no one else has suggested the obvious I will.

Be sure to check the nut that holds the steering wheel.
Rob

studeclunker
03-30-2007, 07:35 PM
Well, the last time I saw the doc... Oh! You mean the nut on the steering collumn. Oh, yes, it's tight. I've already popped off the horn button as the horn was sounding inconsistantly. turned out the wire to the sponge was loose. I routinely check the steering wheel nut when the button is off. Besides I'm thinking about switching out the wheel and was checking fit.

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/december%2006/HPIM0234.jpg http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/56%20Parkview%20Wagon/56wagonleftfrontclipped-1.jpg
Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
Lotsa Larks!
K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
Ron Smith
Where the heck is Lewiston, CA?

nels
03-31-2007, 09:18 PM
I have a suggestion that is worth trying and has not been mentioned. I had a 62 swb pickup about 5 yrs ago. It was hard to steer and wondered on the road. I checked the components and all looked good with the exception of the pitman arm to steering shaft connection. It seemed a little loose. I checked the nut and it was as tight as it would go on the splined shaft. What had happened is the nut bottomed at the step at the end of the threaded shaft before it had fully secured the pitman arm on the tapered shaft. I removed the nut and added a thick washer that had an inside diameter larger than the outside diam of the splined section of the shaft, then reinstalled the nut and retorqued. This time it was able to push the pitman arm up the shaft the addition distance of the washer thickness. The difference was unbelievable!!!! The truck was now easy to steer and no more wondering around the road. Ask Mel and Dan Snow, they now own the truck. I often wonder if that particular problem was typical of all earlier Champs and may be the reason so many steer so hard.
It is worth checking!!

Tom B
03-31-2007, 09:24 PM
This probably is not the problem, but I experienced Squirly handling and found one rear tire was down to about 12 lbs air pressure. Just one more thing to check.

[img=left]http://www.alink.com/personal/tbredehoft/Bothcars.jpg[/img=left]
Tom Bredehoft
'53 Commander Coupe
'60 Lark VI
'05 Legacy Ltd Wagon
All three Indiana built OD cars

kamzack
04-04-2007, 05:54 PM
quote:Originally posted by Mr.Biggs

Kim, I'm "neckless". Don't care.;) The 8Es (63-64s) had "improved" steering geometry and it truly WAS an improvement over the earlier arrangment. But that aluminum steering box was not meant for longevity. It's getting tough to find a useable one or even parts to fix one.
Too bad Stude treated their truck line like a stepchild in the end. They could've had a great line of trucks without too much investment. The Champs are nice, but underneath it all, they're still basically the 2Rs of 10 years earlier![:I]

Miscreant adrift in
the BerStuda Triangle
http://images.andale.com/f2/115/106/906179/2006/12/7/truckonhill3.jpg

1957 Transtar 1/2ton
1960 Larkvertible V8
1958 Provincial wagon
1953 Commander coupe
I had heard horror stories of the 8E steering boxes snapping the shaft off at the box, when I took mine out I tried very hard to uncurse it.
Kim