Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 40 of 44

Thread: Cost to Rebuild a 259 V-8 These Days

  1. #1
    President Member Commander Eddie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Dundee, Oregon
    Posts
    2,853

    Question Cost to Rebuild a 259 V-8 These Days

    I am just curious if anyone has a good idea of what it should cost today to rebuild a 259 Cu. In. V-8 engine.
    I am thinking of just doing a freshening up with as little modification as possible and just replacing bearings, rings, etc.. This might even be a job that could be done with the engine in place. In other words, there is nothing wrong with the engine other than mileage (around 100K).
    Please include the cost of labor. I hope this is enough information.
    Ed Sallia
    Dundee, OR

    Sol Lucet Omnibus

  2. #2
    Golden Hawk Member DEEPNHOCK's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Brooklet, GA, USA. Planet Earth
    Posts
    17,659
    I have a good idea.
    Don't cut corners.
    It will cost you more in the long run to take shortcuts.
    Sure, it has been done on the cheap before...
    But the odds are against you.

    Look at this group of videos.
    Contact this guy. He can tell you.


  3. #3
    President Member warrlaw1's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Barrie, Ontario, Canada.
    Posts
    3,495
    Lots of vendors can supply what you need. S.I. lists components for a minor or a major rebuild. Have fun and like DIH says don't cut corners.
    Dave Warren (Perry Mason by day, Perry Como by night)

  4. #4
    Speedster Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Cape May, NJ
    Posts
    307
    I second those videos by Petes Garage that Deepnhock posted. Even if you are not planning a rebuild it is a great education on the Studebaker V8. Great quality I think it is like 10 half hour videos or something like that.

    I have watched each one more than a couple of times and still use them as reference from I tackle a job
    1960 Champ 1/2 Ton powered by 289/T98 SOLD Already thinking of the next one, Ill let you guys know when it time to help me find her!

  5. #5
    Golden Hawk Member StudeRich's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Ferndale, WA, USA.
    Posts
    27,050
    Your biggest challenge will be finding "the RIGHT" Machine Shop, the Quality, Classic Car knowledge and Prices of this part of the job vary wildly, the Parts are quite stable at all the Studebaker Vendors.

    I would ask John Lasseter in Lebonon OR who he suggests, as he rarely takes on a rebuild anymore.

    His number is in the SDC Roster, or email me for the number.
    Last edited by StudeRich; 01-31-2018 at 01:59 PM.
    StudeRich
    Second Generation Stude Driver,
    Proud '54 Starliner Owner




  6. #6
    Silver Hawk Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Spokane, WA, USA.
    Posts
    7,726
    I am thinking of just doing a freshening up with as little modification as possible and just replacing bearings, rings, etc.. This might even be a job that could be done with the engine in place.
    Yes, it's possible to CASO a 100,000-mile engine in the frame; it will still have worn cylinder bores, worn valve guides, worn cam and lifters, worn crankshaft, block full of rusty crud, but it will run somewhat better and burn less oil. BTDTNA and it would be difficult to pay anyone to tackle one of these today.

    I am just curious if anyone has a good idea of what it should cost today to rebuild a 259 Cu. In. V-8 engine.
    Define rebuild. What you considered above was a "rebuild" back when Studes were orphan junk cars trying to be kept running a few more miles/years. A greasy thumb owner could do all the labor himself, throw a minimum of parts at it, and be on his way after a long weekend. I did a few myself, because as a high school kid, I had no money and then very few Studes were considered worth the cost of a full professional engine rebuild.
    Please include the cost of labor. I hope this is enough information.
    No, not enough information. As mentioned above, I wouldn't know where to find anyone I'd trust who would take on an in-frame today, so labor there would be an unknown.

    A complete rebuild with the engine out, labor is in two parts. Most machine shops won't R&R engines, so it's usually necessary to find a general repair shop to pull the engine, removing all the accessories, replacing them and reinstalling the rebuilt engine and getting it running to spec. Finding a general repair shop who wants to take on the R&R of the engine is not as easy as it once was. They can make more money replacing parts on new cars.

    Then, there's machine shop labor; disassembling, cleaning, ordering parts, machining, assembling. Most general repair shops send out the engine to be rebuilt. You can choose to be your own general contractor and deal with both shops or leave it to one to be responsible for it all.

    Both labor costs are considerable, because most 100,000-mile Stude V8s are a greasy, nasty, crud-filled lump to remove, disassemble and get clean enough to begin whatever level of rebuild is chosen.

    Before removal, a half-hour spent in a pressure wash bay will leave the operator filthy, but will make the pull much less messy. Another half-hour back in the pressure wash bay with the removed engine will speed up disassembly.

    Bottom line - Most 100,000-mile Stude V8s are worn beyond Shop Manual spec in literally every area, but sometimes a lot of labor and $500 in parts, they can be patched up to go a few more miles.

    Is the car worth doing it right? The machine shop side of a full long-block rebuild to better-than-factory tolerances and all new wear parts/surfaces is $3000 at the least and $4000 to do it as well as it can be done. Any less cost leaves some work undone somewhere; the result will still probably give good service in a lightly used hobby car.

    It will be interesting and informative to read the experiences of those who've been there and done that recently.

    jack vines
    PackardV8

  7. #7
    President Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA.
    Posts
    4,775
    I'm going to take an approach which steals a bit from each of the above.
    Why are you freshening the engine? Does it not run? Smoke? Knock? It matters.
    It also depends on the use of the end product.
    Even a 100K Stude engine can live well if its not in every day use. Occasional weekend use will not demand a perfect engine.
    Now then, does it smoke a lot? Does it knock? If so, you'll need more serious work. If no smoking or knocking, check compression, or leak down, for each cylinder. If even within 5 to 10 lbs, you may be able to get away with a good clean out of the water jackets, and at worst, a valve job.
    Again, it all stems from intended use. A running Stude V8 that is not smoking or knocking and not going out on a cross country trip will usually go for as long as you keep the car, with regular upkeep and maintenance.
    This is just from my experience. When I used to drive my cars as daily drivers, I would do a rebuild at times and go through the entire engine. Now that I rarely use them at this level, I just want the engine to run well enough to have fun.
    A $5000 rebuild on an engine in a 62 4 door Lark that has rust and needs upholstery may not provide a good return on the investment. On the other hand, a $5000 rebuild in an Avanti may prove to be of great value.
    Perhaps your project lies somewhere in between. You decide.
    sals54

  8. #8
    President Member warrlaw1's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Barrie, Ontario, Canada.
    Posts
    3,495
    Geez, Sal, just gave me a flashback. I drove a 55 Coupe 259 3spd OD with a blown 1st gear as my only driver for five years. It drank so much oil I never needed to change it (lol) I went and went and went with only transmission issues. I was leaving the country and owed Mr. Transmission $200 so I gave him the car. I bet it still runs
    Dave Warren (Perry Mason by day, Perry Como by night)

  9. #9
    President Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    mass
    Posts
    3,496
    Most Studes can easily start out in 2nd gear with the V8 (re: auto cars)..... I think most in the shop will agree the weak link in the Stude V8 is not the lower end, its the valve train. And to mention the rocker assemblies.....

  10. #10
    President Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Above the Equator
    Posts
    1,649
    My second car (1976) had a 260 Ford with 148,000 miles on it. Like your engine it ran, but was showing its age. I replaced the main, rod, cam bearings and rings (simply honing the cylinders), lapped the valves and put it back together with new seals/gaskets. It ran fine for another 20,000 miles and I only sold the car because I needed better gas economy as we moved into the 80's. Most are stating you are looking at about $3,500 to do it well. But as others have asked will you ever recoupe that investment.

    I have numerous so-called "collector cars" and don't drive them any furthur than 60 miles from home and typcally average 200-300 miles a year. For me I would NEVER recoupe the investment. Sometimes you are better off just finding a nicer car than trying to make better a tired one. In the end you have to decide.
    '64 Lark Type, powered by '85 Corvette L-69 (carburetor), 700R4, - CASO to the Max.

  11. #11
    Speedster Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    waukesha, wisconsin, USA.
    Posts
    318
    A complete engine kit with pistons will be near 2K. Add in about the same amount in Labor as a minimum. A correct rebuild will be 4 - 5K maybe a little more. A turn key engine will be 6K plus.
    james r pepper

  12. #12
    President Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Damascus, OR
    Posts
    1,485
    Call me before you do anything....
    Jerry

  13. #13
    President Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    840
    Quote Originally Posted by Commander Eddie View Post
    I am just curious if anyone has a good idea of what it should cost today to rebuild a 259 Cu. In. V-8 engine.
    I am thinking of just doing a freshening up with as little modification as possible and just replacing bearings, rings, etc.. This might even be a job that could be done with the engine in place. In other words, there is nothing wrong with the engine other than mileage (around 100K).
    Please include the cost of labor. I hope this is enough information.

    Back in 1970, my Power Hawk which had about 71K on the clock overheated badly from a lost freeze plug when I was some ten miles from home. I decided to try and make it back and about half way there the engine seized up. I abandoned the car. After a short walk, I found a phone and called for a ride home fully thinking that the engine was toast. Later, I called the family mechanic who sort of looked like Nikita Khrushchev and tolerated little in the way of nonsense.

    That evening I drove to his house and we took his car to rescue the hawk. When we got to the location of the he told me to start the car up and I protested that the engine was seized but he insisted that I try. Low and behold the car started right up! I ran it for a few seconds and shut it down and he proceeded to hook up a chain and we were off. After the car was safely in the shop, I went home. The next day when I went to the shop, he already had a new freeze plug installed and told me that most likely the pistons collapsed and the rings had likely lost most of their temper so the car would run but also consume oil. He suggested an overhaul consisting of bearings, rings, valve job. Being a CASO, I drove the car as it was for about nine months, gathered the parts that I needed in South Bend at a National Meet in 1971. Shortly after, I bought an Avanti which became my daily driver and just left the hawk in the shop. In the following spring of 1972, I bit the bullet and put the hawk on "stilts" and tackled the overhaul which took me a couple of weeks under supervision. I installed NOS standard pistons, moly rings, standard size main and rod bearings, rear seal, gaskets and head work with reground valves and stem seals. One thing that he insisted on was not to hone the cylinders.

    When the time came to start the newly "freshened" engine, it ran perfectly. I changed the oil after 100 miles, then again at 500 miles followed by 1,000 miles and 3,000 miles. Oil consumption was nil for the first two changes and perhaps a pint at the 1000 mile mark and a little over a quart for the 3k change. Even that rate of oil consumption dropped as I put the miles on. The car to this day doesn't smoke, use excess oil and has great oil pressure.

    His comment was that Studebaker used better materials and that was a major contributor to my "good luck." I believe this to this day and in so doing, I would never diss an overhaul at 100K provided the engine exhibits no major symptoms such as knocking etc.

    Your mileage may vary...

  14. #14
    Golden Hawk Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Wappingers Falls, New York, USA.
    Posts
    19,826
    Quote Originally Posted by Commander Eddie View Post
    I am just curious if anyone has a good idea of what it should cost today to rebuild a 259 Cu. In. V-8 engine.
    I am thinking of just doing a freshening up with as little modification as possible and just replacing bearings, rings, etc.. This might even be a job that could be done with the engine in place. In other words, there is nothing wrong with the engine other than mileage (around 100K).
    Please include the cost of labor. I hope this is enough information.
    What I read into this is that you have a reasonably good running Studebaker V8 and you are just a little "concerned" because it has 100K on it. I would just put new valve stem seals in, adjust the valves, install new core plugs after cleaning the water jacket and do a tune up with new ignition parts.
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
    Studebaker enthusiast much longer

  15. #15
    President Member BRUCESTUDE's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Yakima, Wa, .
    Posts
    1,416
    When I rebuilt my 259 2 years ago the machine shop bill was almost $1,000: valve job including seats and guides, bored out, crank turned, cam bearings and core plugs installed, piston pins fitted etc. Add $125 to that to have the cam and lifters ground via UPS. Parts you can look up on any vendor's site; I always buy extras (tune up parts, hoses belts, etc etc) so it's difficult for me to add up!
    It's spendy, yes but well worth it to have a new Studebaker motor!!!!

  16. #16
    President Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    mass
    Posts
    3,496
    I'm certain that the $1K was shop labor only. Add parts ?

  17. #17
    Speedster Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Westbrook, MN
    Posts
    414
    not sure where you are but my son is a real gearhead and is located in Oregon city. He is an F-16 engine mechanic for the Guard. He is very busy so it could take a few weeks and he might not have time but it wouldn't hurt to ask. e-mail is tristan.s.cassel@gmail.com

  18. #18
    President Member BRUCESTUDE's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Yakima, Wa, .
    Posts
    1,416
    Quote Originally Posted by jackb View Post
    I'm certain that the $1K was shop labor only. Add parts ?
    I supplied the parts except valve seats......

  19. #19
    President Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    mass
    Posts
    3,496
    "I supplied the parts except valve seats"...... exactly: the cost of parts ?

  20. #20
    Silver Hawk Member JoeHall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Kentucky, USA.
    Posts
    5,801
    The last 289 I rebuilt was a little less than five years ago, and it cost $3000. That included machine shop labor for machining, install cam bearings, heads reworked, and cleaning. I did the disassembly and reassembly of the block. I would not let any local shop do the disassembly or reassembly, since there is too much they can screw up. As was, they still screwed up a couple of things I had to correct before reassembly.

  21. #21
    President Member PeterHawk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Buffalo, New York, USA.
    Posts
    574
    I am the owner of the engine rebuild on my 62 GT Hawk that Deepinhock mentioned in post #2. I searched for a turn key situation including removal, disassembly, machine shop work, reassembly, Dyno testing and reinstalling in the car. I also had some additional engine bay detailing done while the engine was out. The project was started in Nov and was finished in April so I did not have to pay storage during a Western New York winter. Pete was a very knowledgeable and professional person to deal with and I now have a lifelong friend. I think the video series on YouTube is very informative but if there are specific questions, I would be happy to address them. My contact info is on the back page of Turning Wheels.

    Peter Bishop
    Director,
    Northeast Zone

  22. #22
    Commander Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Pawling, NY, USA.
    Posts
    39
    You are talking of freshening up your 259. That can mean a lot of things usually skipping items that should be addressed. such as making sure the cylinder walls are straight, and that the deck height is the same on both sides, and cleaning the trash from the cooling jacket of the engine. I have been remanufacturing these Studebaker engines since 1960 and skipping items usually means doing the job over in a short while. If you are looking for a remanufacture of a complete run tested engine with the machining done by a shop that understands these old engines, Studebakers in particular, be ready to spend between $5,6K. Why? because placing the block in a washing machine does not clean the way one would want. These machines leave dirt in the water jacket and sludge in the oil cavities. Labor is a big part of the rebuild, If you want your engine to last longer the second time remanufacture it without skipping process or parts.

    Ted Jensen
    studepickups@optonline.net
    New York

  23. #23
    President Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Wimauma, FL, USA.
    Posts
    662
    By doing my own work except for machining, I spend around $2500. That is about $1000 for machine work which usually includes boring, decking, balancing, crank grinding, head work etc. The parts usually include pistons, rings, bearings, and gaskets. If the cam is out of specs, or the lifters are worn, add $250.

    I clean all oil galleries and water passages myself. Usually after a sonic cleaning they are not too hard to finish.
    78 Avanti RQB 2792
    64 Avanti R1 R5408
    63 Avanti R1 R4551
    63 Avanti R1 R2281
    62 GT Hawk V15949
    56 GH 6032504
    56 GH 6032588
    55 Speedster 7160047
    55 Speedster 7165279

  24. #24
    Silver Hawk Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Spokane, WA, USA.
    Posts
    7,726
    Quote Originally Posted by studepickups View Post
    You are talking of freshening up your 259. That can mean a lot of things usually skipping items that should be addressed. such as making sure the cylinder walls are straight, and that the deck height is the same on both sides, and cleaning the trash from the cooling jacket of the engine. I have been remanufacturing these Studebaker engines since 1960 and skipping items usually means doing the job over in a short while. If you are looking for a remanufacture of a complete run tested engine with the machining done by a shop that understands these old engines, Studebakers in particular, be ready to spend between $5,6K. Why? because placing the block in a washing machine does not clean the way one would want. These machines leave dirt in the water jacket and sludge in the oil cavities. Labor is a big part of the rebuild, If you want your engine to last longer the second time remanufacture it without skipping process or parts.

    Ted Jensen
    studepickups@optonline.net
    New York
    X2 and for true, Ted. We no longer take on any patch-work builds. For forty years, we rebuilt Stude engines without line honing, square decking, rod reconditioning, balancing, positive valve stem seals; and yes, they ran well and cost less. But when we gained the machinery to make every part as well as it can be done, it's amazing how much better, smoother, quieter, longer, more powerfully a rebuild can run.

    It's also amazing how much we found that had been overlooked or accepted in order to save a few bucks. As you mention, just getting the crusty/rusty old junk clean enough to inspect is a major hassle. Getting it really clean enough to reassemble can take hours. Since the labor to pull, disassemble, clean, reassemble, install is the same, it just makes sense to do the machining and interior cleaning as well as it can be done. What it adds to the total cost is a good investment.

    jack vines
    PackardV8

  25. #25
    President Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Corunna, MI USA
    Posts
    1,094
    Great thread. Given this information I guess as soon as the snow clears off I should load up that collection of Studebaker V-8s that have taking up space in my shop and drop 'em off at the local scrapyard, as there is no way that I'll ever be able to justify dumping 20+ k into rebuilding them. Just keeping the Cadillac, Mopar, and Chevy engines, which are rebuildable within my budget.
    Who'da ever thought. I can build me a Studillac for less than the cost of rebuilding the original 259.

  26. #26
    President Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Wimauma, FL, USA.
    Posts
    662
    Jessie,
    Very true. The big difference is in the cost of parts. For around $500 you can get a sbc rebuild kit. Also, you can buy a decent performing sbc crate motor for much less than $3000.

    But what would be the fun in that.
    Last edited by 64studeavanti; 02-04-2018 at 10:26 PM.
    78 Avanti RQB 2792
    64 Avanti R1 R5408
    63 Avanti R1 R4551
    63 Avanti R1 R2281
    62 GT Hawk V15949
    56 GH 6032504
    56 GH 6032588
    55 Speedster 7160047
    55 Speedster 7165279

  27. #27
    Silver Hawk Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Spokane, WA, USA.
    Posts
    7,726
    Quote Originally Posted by Jessie J. View Post
    Who'da ever thought. I can build me a Studillac for less than the cost of rebuilding the original 259.
    Not really. We build them all and Cadillac parts are slightly more expensive than Studebaker V8 parts. The only bargain is the Gen I SBC; parts for them are dirt cheap, about 1/3 of the same parts for a Studebaker V8. Machine work is the same, whatever the engine.

    There's a guy locally who will rebuild a 350" SBC long block with used rods and valvetrain for $995. The same CASO job on a Studebaker V8 is $1995. So no one is saying it's a requirement to spend $3K-$5K on a Studebaker rebuild; just that those who do have that much better engine.

    jack vines
    PackardV8

  28. #28
    Speedster Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Westbrook, MN
    Posts
    414
    20 years ago I rescued a 58 Packard from a grove. It's engine was stuck. I pulled it dismantled it replaced a couple pistons from the junk box under the old workbench and put it back together with JC Whitney parts I had stockpiled in the 70's. Did the valve job myself and replaced thin valves out of the same juck box. Did buy a carb kit but that is all. Don't think I spent $100 on it. It ran great and is a great cruiser still!

  29. #29
    President Member swvalcon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    princeton mn
    Posts
    2,764
    Jeffry Having the no how to do the work yourself and a stock of parts helps. About the same time frame I went to a swap meet and bought some parts and then used what I had in stock and built a 377 chev drag race motor that made just over 450 hp on the dyno. and ran 11.30's in a 2800 lb car for about $1200. So it can be done but not by everyone.

  30. #30
    Silver Hawk Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Spokane, WA, USA.
    Posts
    7,726
    Don't think I spent $100 on it. It ran great and is a great cruiser still!
    Quote Originally Posted by swvalcon View Post
    Jeffry Having the no how to do the work yourself and a stock of parts helps. . . . So it can be done but not by everyone.
    For true. But the question is how much would either of you charge a walk-in customer to R&R and rebuild an engine for him?

    If anyone asked me how much it cost to build the Packard V8 in my E12 truck. I could say, "Nothing, because I had all the parts on the shelf and did all the work myself." The reply would naturally be, "Well, for that price, I'll take one!" So the answer should be, "Your cost to build one like it is $4,000."

    jack vines
    PackardV8

  31. #31
    Commander Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Pawling, NY, USA.
    Posts
    39

    hope you will not do this

    Quote Originally Posted by Jessie J. View Post
    Great thread. Given this information I guess as soon as the snow clears off I should load up that collection of Studebaker V-8s that have taking up space in my shop and drop 'em off at the local scrapyard, as there is no way that I'll ever be able to justify dumping 20+ k into rebuilding them. Just keeping the Cadillac, Mopar, and Chevy engines, which are rebuildable within my budget.
    Who'da ever thought. I can build me a Studillac for less than the cost of rebuilding the original 259.
    Jessie: There are other ways of keeping the cost down. Often I remanufacture engines for people but not to the extent of a complete. Usually a long block and the person uses their own water pump, carburetor, fuel pump, distributor and so on. If you are more curious read an article I wrote for Turning Wheels, July 2014. Name of the article is "why does it cost so much to rebuild a Studebaker engine?"

  32. #32
    Speedster Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Westbrook, MN
    Posts
    414
    Much of the expense is the Machine Shop. It is like walking into the Chevvy dealer and asking if you need a new car!!!! Of course you do!! Parts are more 'cause they built a zillion Chevs and and Fords and a handfull of Studebakers. If you have any aptitude it is not difficult to do a ring and valve job. You need a table saw; carefully clean the head and lay it on the saw table. You can check for any wobble at all and use a fuller gauge to probe between head and machined surface of the saw table. You need a decent micrometer. Practice with it. Cranks are often reusable with out machining. I've had good cranks trashed by shops. You need to have the cam bearings installed by a mechanic with the proper tool ( don't try to scrimp by not replacing them) One of the biggest things is getting those darned galleries clean If the shop cleans your block they won't be clean enough. I use a shotgun cleaning rod. I have a friend who is a retired tractor mechanic and he has a valve ginding machine. Be sure you don't grind exh. valve too thin; they'll burn out. Keep it clean! Cannot over stress going slow and Plastigage. Doubl e check everything. Blocks can often be reused. Check bore with a new comp ring squared up with a piston. measure gap with a feeler gage. Install piston without rings to check wear ( with feeler gage) You'll need a ridge cutter and a ring compressor to install pistons. Don't forget to hone cylinders-the rings might not seat. Lube pistons with ATF. Use K_W Copper Coat on headgaskets -be generous with it. Follow shop manual exactly. Retorque. Unless you live right near the end of the world you will be able to find an SDC member to help. Join AACA ; you should be able to make a gearhead friend or two amonst these nice folks. It gets more expensive to fix old cars with every passing year; we should be helping each othe out as much as possible.

  33. #33
    President Member TWChamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    Minneapolis
    Posts
    3,602
    In addition to what Jeffry said, I have a framing square that I use to check heads. When I worked at the auto machine shop, I set my framing square against the head bar, and found it was perfect, so I set the square aside and only use it for checking heads and blocks and manifolds for flatness.

  34. #34
    President Member
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Oklahoma City
    Posts
    556
    I certainly would not try a freshen up with the block still in the car. When I was in high school, a friend and I "rebuilt" a ford 390 in a 67 Mustang without pulling the motor. Rings and rod bearings. Took the heads to a machine shop for a valve job. Nothing was cleaned. Engine ran well enough, but he sold it shortly thereafter. Definitely not the solution if you plan to keep the car. As others have said, not every block needs decked. Not every set of heads need skimmed. However, on ANY engine I want to be perfect for many years of trouble free service, I have the block decked and the heads trued. I have checked many used SBC blocks for square, and only found one that was dead on.

  35. #35
    President Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Corunna, MI USA
    Posts
    1,094
    To read some of these posts Studebaker did such a lousy job of machining their V-8 that it was a pure miracle that any of these engines stayed together even long enough to make it to the dealerships, much less instill owner satisfaction, and brand loyalty for decades and hundreds of thousands of miles of use.
    Personally I tend to doubt that Studebaker's factory machining was significantly worse than that of any other competitively priced make.
    Certainly meticulous and time consuming precision 'blueprinting' benefits any 1950s engine. But it is NOT a requirement for attaining "factory new" performance, and a level of satisfaction commensurate with the original owner experience.
    In my case, it is quite inconceivable that I'll ever put more than a few thousand miles a year on my Studebaker's. I wouldn't want to, because of the frequency of required maintenance, and that I employ disposable brand Xs to beat to death as daily drivers.
    My Daytona with its R-3 headers and Don Simmons 2 1/4" stainless 'straight through' exhaust gives a very satisfying rumble while cruising about, and pedal down pins us to the seat up to any legal speed. Not competing in the Pure Stock Muscle Car Drags, a 'stock' stock, as originally factory assembled engine, serves plenty well enough for me, as it has for the last 50+ years.
    The 169 in my M-5 still runs and hasn't been apart once since 1954, no need. (actually it wasn't "apart" even then, just sheared the shaft on the oil pump ...which I still have.)
    Last edited by Jessie J.; 02-07-2018 at 11:13 PM.

  36. #36
    Silver Hawk Member JoeHall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Kentucky, USA.
    Posts
    5,801
    Quote Originally Posted by Jessie J. View Post
    To read some of these posts Studebaker did such a lousy job of machining their V-8 that it was a pure miracle that any of these engines stayed together even long enough to make it to the dealerships, much less instill owner satisfaction, and brand loyalty for decades and hundreds of thousands of miles of use.
    Personally I tend to doubt that Studebaker's factory machining was significantly worse than that of any other competitively priced make.
    Certainly meticulous and time consuming precision 'blueprinting' benefits any 1950s engine. But it is NOT a requirement for attaining "factory new" performance, and a level of satisfaction commensurate with the original owner experience.
    In my case, it is quite inconceivable that I'll ever put more than a few thousand miles a year on my Studebaker's. I wouldn't want to, because of the frequency of required maintenance, and that I employ disposable brand Xs to beat to death as daily drivers.
    My Daytona with its R-3 headers and Don Simmons 2 1/4" stainless 'straight through' exhaust gives a very satisfying rumble while cruising about, and pedal down pins us to the seat up to any legal speed. Not competing in the Pure Stock Muscle Car Drags, a 'stock' stock, as originally factory assembled engine, serves plenty well enough for me, as it has for the last 50+ years.
    The 169 in my M-5 still runs and hasn't been apart once since 1954, no need. (actually it wasn't "apart" even then, just sheared the shaft on the oil pump ...which I still have.)
    The block and heads are just chunks of iron. So I'd think, after trillions of RPM, and hundreds of thousands of heat cycles, they may contort a bit. So, since technology is available, and does not cost that much, it just seems a good idea to check the block deck and heads for straightness, upon rebuild. Unless the motor is in a trailer queen, or other vehicle not likely to ever see another 5,000 miles in its lifetime.

  37. #37
    Commander Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Liberty Missouri
    Posts
    87
    Much easier if you remove the engine. No need to be leaning over the fenders and trying to avoid head injury imo. I'm doing. a 289 right now that was running good but developed a knock which turned out to be a failed rod bearing. Has over 100k. Doesn't appear it was ever disassembled before. I have the heads and crank at the machine shop right now. The valves and seats were really hammered and the valve guides were a bit loose. Studebaker International has the best prices on parts except for gaskets. Had the thin head gaskets which didn't come with Felpro set. My cylinder walls were still good with very little wear or taper so I plan to hone and re-ring. Biggest surprise was how plugged up all the water passages were. It's no wonder it ran hot. I expect it had too much stop leak or something added. Agree with others about not short changing the job. You really won't know until it's torn down and inspected

  38. #38
    Silver Hawk Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Spokane, WA, USA.
    Posts
    7,726
    Biggest surprise was how plugged up all the water passages were. It's no wonder it ran hot. I expect it had too much stop leak or something added. Agree with others about not short changing the job. You really won't know until it's torn down and inspected
    Agree; it typically takes a full day to clean the typical 100Kmi+ Studebaker engine. First it has to be cleaned enough to disassemble, then disassemble, remove all the core and threaded plugs, clean the mud out of the water jackets and oil sludge out of the heads, block, rockers, cam bearings knocked out. The parts have to be clean enough to go into the pressure washer (don't want a bucket full of mud and grease going in the tank), then inspect all the parts to determine what can be reused and what must be replaced or remachined.

    Has over 100k. . . . My cylinder walls were still good with very little wear or taper so I plan to hone and re-ring.
    Congrats on being able to save the $500+ for boring and new pistons. That is very unusual and someone must have been diligent about air filter and oil changes. The Shop Manual says no more than .005" taper and we've never seen a 100Kmi+ Studebaker V8 have less than that.

    FWIW, we're building an R2 and the owner told us the bore had no ridge and wanted to reuse what he thought were original pistons. What we found was at some time in the past the ridge had been reamed out and new pistons and rings installed; the bore actually has .012" taper. Eyes are OK for a quick inspection, but the Sunnen dial bore gauge doesn't guesstimate.

    We could save the low-miles R2 repop STD pistons, but finding a block to put them in with less than .005" taper would be the difficulty. Back in the CASO days, we'd have knurled the skirts, hit the bores with a hand hone and driven it another 10 -20,000 miles. That build would have been down on power, smoked and used a little oil, but would have run fine by the standards of the bad old days and certainly preferable to parking a Stude for lack of funds for a full remanufacture.

    jack vines
    Last edited by PackardV8; 02-08-2018 at 02:24 PM.
    PackardV8

  39. #39
    President Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    1,426
    Back in 1995 I had the engine in my Avanti completely re-built (engine out of car).....cost me $3,000.00........have had zero issues with about 30k miles since the re-build. Have no idea what that same job would run in 2018?

  40. #40
    President Member Deaf Mute's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Eldridge, Iowa , USA.
    Posts
    1,814
    Remember the day (1960 era) when you could get the valves ground on your 232 for $16.00? It was $1 a hole back then..... and a gallon of blue DuLuxe enamel was $10.00. I was making 50 cents an hour bagging groceries and 55 cents an hour in the body shop.
    Now I am living on Social Security & a gallon of reducer cost me over $30 last week.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •