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Thread: My Half A$$ Studebaker Rebuild

  1. #1
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    My Half A$$ Studebaker Rebuild

    Hi folks! It would seem to be prudent to start a rebuild thread of my car instead of my incoherent ramblings of non thread subjects on my Vin Identification thread. So all my future posts, related to Studes or not should end up here. Full disclosure, I've never restored a car, can't weld, can't paint, can't do upholstery, but everything looks perfect in my mind, but probably not in reality. So here we go.

    I bought this car from a really nice guy, Jimmy in Central CA.


    He's helping me hook up the car to a come along. I saw the car on CL and the price was within my budget, so I called and bought it over the phone after a few questions. I had to arrange a Uhaul car trailer and get my truck ready and he held the car for me a week before I could get it. He had received calls after we agreed and was offered more to sell it to them. He told him no, the car is sold. He was raised proper and I really appreciated his honesty.

    As you can see, I had to buy a set of late model Jeep wheels to put on the Hawk due to sidewalls being blown out with dry rot. I thought about getting some bald tires and throwing them on, but this way seemed to save effort of breaking down tires and airing them up again.



    Finally home.





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    It has a fuel leak in the tank as I see a wet spot and fuel smell which eventually went away. I'm sure the tank is empty now. I was going to remove ii for a boil out and repair, but this is in the way.


    Welded in and I'd have to cut it out to get the tank out.




    It also has air(less) shocks and I hate to imagine what he towed with drum brakes.



    This was under the hood. As well as the oil filter.


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    So a quick check of things: It has old, but clean oil, no coolant, engine frozen, battery shows it was installed in 96, last registration also 96. 91K miles on the speedo.


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    It looks like you are in for quite a learning experience. One piece of advice if I might. Tackle the car in small projects with getting it running and brakeing first. Don't start tearing it apart en mas because it's easy to look at a pile of parts and get discouraged.

    BTW, you will get discouraged but taking small steps at a time will help moderate that and you will see progress. Take on the body last. With your limited skills currently, and they will improve with time, the brakes and running are doable. Once you have crossed that bridge, look over what you have and plan from there.

    In my mind, your first step is the car wash with a pile of change clean the heck out of it. A powerwash would work also.

    Welcome the this world. Done in small steps you will be rewarded by what you accomplish.

    Bob
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    So the engine could not be budged by hand and seems there are locking tabs on the crank pulley bolt that prevents a socket from being placed on the bolt. So I started charging the 22 year old battery and sprayed my ATF/Acetone mixture into the cylinders. I figured I have nothing to lose. 5 days later, I hook up my remote starter....


    https://youtu.be/bSMUtXQgCw4

  6. #6
    President Member Colgate Studebaker's Avatar
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    Welcome to the Stude world. This is the place to find information on just about anything related to Stude's. Bob gives you excellent advice, so don't be afraid to ask questions. Most questions have been asked several times in the past and this forum has a "search" option that you can search for info. It is the "advanced search" box in the upper right hand corner of this page. Most everyone on this forum is knowledgeable and freely gives advice that will be of help. Good luck and keep us up to date. Pictures are always welcome. Bill

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    Thanks Bill and Bob, it is good advice. I am in the gathering and puttering stage. Doing a little here and there. It's a long term project of which I am not in a hurry since in a couple years I will be retiring. This car was to be my retirement project if I get bored without 40+ hours a week of work getting in the way. My goal for this car is to make it a driver, not a show car, so I can be less than perfect on it. Since I know it has a fighting chance of actually running, I move on to trying to get it in running condition. As with any project car, it needs pretty much everything. As a former British car owner, I know it involves brakes, fuel (flushing, lines, pump, tank cleanup, repair, carb etc), cooling system, electrical. Body, as Bob recommends, last.

    I took the oil filter apart.



    This was in there..




    New filter elements.

    Last edited by Topper2011; 07-08-2018 at 12:47 PM.

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    I know this seemed like a silly idea, but it will make sense in a bit.



    When a door on a Studebaker falls off the jack when the last bolt gives, it hurts when it hits you in the head. I had to drill out all six on the door side and will have to do the same on the bulkhead side. All the bolts are oxidized welded to each other.



    Decided to gut this door instead. It's an original door, the driver's is a replacement I'm guessing because of the green paint. I am planning on refurbishing the rubber bits, weatherstrips and cleaning and lubing all the mechanisms as they were pretty frozen. The driver's side hinge pins need replacing as the door never closed properly and slamming it isn't good for any part.



    Some rot I'll try my hand at fixing.



    and the reason for the door removal, access.

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    I'm a little motorcycle heavy and sold a pretty nice GS1100E to help finance the Studebaker.


    Jimmy's father, (the guy I bought the Hawk from) had this in his garage.





    I really want this bike and Wyatt is more than willing to sell it. It's a Suzuki Hustler 250. People used to race these in the day and it has a bobbed fender to emulate that. Being that I am in the CJMC (Classic Japanese Motorcycle Club), I have a fondness for old Suzuki's. Speaking of which, here is one of my Club Member's only "car"



    He drives it everywhere and I commend him.
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    Last edited by Topper2011; 07-08-2018 at 12:39 PM.

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    Roland,
    Congrats on your new challenge. I've always said this old Detroit (Southbend in this case) Iron just needs half a chance and will usually run with a few preparations which it looks like you have done. I would suggest using a remote fuel can for now until you can determine what lurks in that old tank. There is no point in adding contamination to your fuel system. As stated by Bob and Bill, lots of good info right here. Keep us updated and don't hesitate to ask questions. A shop manual will prove to be invaluable. Check out our vendors on the Studebaker Driver's Club website as you can obtain just about everything you'll need from knowledgeable suppliers at reasonable prices.
    Luck,
    Bill
    PS: I haven't seen one of those oil filters in decades.

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    Very cool.
    The man is a Buell fan too.
    Another orphan vehicle.

    Have fun with your build.

    Mike

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    Thanks Bill, yep I have a Service manual from Ebay and a catalog from Studebakers International. I also went to the Studebakers West Swap Meet.













    While I was messing with my transmission, I realized I only have neutral and second. I took the shifters off the transmission and could not budge the shifter lever for 1st and reverse. So it's locked up there and not in the column. I was able to get a reportedly good replacement at the swap meet.



    Why it's painted orange, I'm not sure, perhaps the previous owner was a Chevy owner and had some paint left over. I will repaint it black as Rich had recommended.

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    Decided to get rid of the rotted tires, too bad as they had plenty of tread on them and if the air had been kept up, who knows.


    I was able to get into the trunk through the back seat. Nothing more fun than to smell pee while crawling through a car sitting in a field for years. I can only imagine what critters made this car home.



    Goodies! Looks like I have a start on my disc brake conversion. I also discovered there aren't any hinges on the trunk lid nor springs. Anyone want to part with a set?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Van Veghten View Post
    Very cool.
    The man is a Buell fan too.
    Another orphan vehicle.

    Have fun with your build.

    Mike
    Thanks Mike, I went to Erik Buell's 25th Homecoming in Wisconsin in 2008 and he signed a poster for me as it was also my 25th Anniversary year as well.

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    I'm done!



    Actually, this was my inspiration. My sister gave this to me and it started the wheels turning in my head. I am so glad it wasn't a tri-five!





    Cleaning out a box in my garage I had when my father passed away in 2001 and we were cleaning out the house. I don't know if newer ones are still made in the USA, but this one is. I believe I bought this for my then girlfriend's 69 Mustang and never used it. Circa late 70's.

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    I picked these up a few weeks ago on CL. Mid-80's Cherokee 15 x 6.



    I plan on putting 4 wheel discs and hoping these should work. As it stands, I believe they are hitting the large rear drums without a spacer for the hub. Since the disc sit proud of the axle, it should clear.


  17. #17
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    That poor old GT sure has a lot rust for a California car. I have two Cali cars in the shop here, and neither has as much as a tenth of the rust you have there. The trailer hitch, if you want to remove it? A zip disc on an air-powered die grinder will cut that angle stock OK. Or a metal-cutting blade in a reciprocating saw. I just removed doors and hinges from a rusty '61 Hawk. I got most of the hinge screws out. The trick is to head the screw head cherry red with an acetylene torch, and then use the right Phillips bit in a ratchet handle as soon as it has cooled below red heat. It will either come right out, or the head will snap off (either of which was OK for my purposes).

    You are going to need a welder. One of those $110 wire-feed jobs from Harbor Freight will get the job done, but not in the neatest possible way. If you don't have an air compressor, and some air tools, add that to the list. Five horsepower, cast iron, oil-lubricated compressor is ideal. Avoid the oil-less ones; they are very noisy, and don't last.
    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

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    Quote Originally Posted by gordr View Post
    That poor old GT sure has a lot rust for a California car. I have two Cali cars in the shop here, and neither has as much as a tenth of the rust you have there. The trailer hitch, if you want to remove it? A zip disc on an air-powered die grinder will cut that angle stock OK. Or a metal-cutting blade in a reciprocating saw. I just removed doors and hinges from a rusty '61 Hawk. I got most of the hinge screws out. The trick is to head the screw head cherry red with an acetylene torch, and then use the right Phillips bit in a ratchet handle as soon as it has cooled below red heat. It will either come right out, or the head will snap off (either of which was OK for my purposes).
    You are going to need a welder. One of those $110 wire-feed jobs from Harbor Freight will get the job done, but not in the neatest possible way. If you don't have an air compressor, and some air tools, add that to the list. Five horsepower, cast iron, oil-lubricated compressor is ideal. Avoid the oil-less ones; they are very noisy, and don't last.
    Yes, I'm surprised as well. I bought a Rover P5 3 Litre many years ago. I bought it from the son of the original owner. It had spent most of it's time in Pasadena and had sun rot of the rubber and interior. Once that happened, any amount of rain can come into the interior and rot the floors. The Rover only had two small spots of rot when it was stripped to bare metal. Never had an accident. I never did complete that car, but it was a running driving car. I did pick up a welder awhile ago.




    And my crappy welding with it.






    You should see the photos of the welding I left out. I did finally get rid of my 30+ year old Ingersoll Rand oiless compressor. I punished it on a frozen engine and needed a new piston assembly, about $49. I went for an oldie.



    1969 and runs well. I don't think I'll run out of air with this one. It's weighs a ton though.
    Last edited by Topper2011; 07-08-2018 at 02:04 PM.

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    I wouldn’t run it with the gas line connected - you’ll suck all the debris out of the tank through the entire fuel system & certainly plug up the carb.
    as for the trailer hitch, cut it off and get that tank out for a proper cleaning
    i once bought a mint 1981 VW Cabrio with 18k miles. It was an estate sale & the car had sat for many years. I Charged the battery, put gas in it & $1,000 later after a complete rebuild of the entire fuel system, it ran fine.

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    Shop shop manuals can also be found very reasonably at Rock Auto

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    Great project. It’s a lot to chew off for your first Studebaker. All the advice above is good. Tackle small projects first. It’s easy to get overwhelmed. I’m surprised Carl let you take his picture! Keep up the good work and take lots of pictures.

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    Quote Originally Posted by abkco View Post
    Great project. It’s a lot to chew off for your first Studebaker. All the advice above is good. Tackle small projects first. It’s easy to get overwhelmed. I’m surprised Carl let you take his picture! Keep up the good work and take lots of pictures.

    He told me if I want to take a picture of the shop, he would charge me. If I took one with him in it, he would pay me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chartrain View Post
    I wouldn’t run it with the gas line connected - you’ll suck all the debris out of the tank through the entire fuel system & certainly plug up the carb.
    as for the trailer hitch, cut it off and get that tank out for a proper cleaning
    i once bought a mint 1981 VW Cabrio with 18k miles. It was an estate sale & the car had sat for many years. I Charged the battery, put gas in it & $1,000 later after a complete rebuild of the entire fuel system, it ran fine.
    I will be using a can and hose to feed a new fuel filter to the carb when I get a chance. I'm sure it will be loud on one side as the header pipe is broken off. I've got to get it out of the garage in case it goes wrong of course.

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    Since I have gotten the build sheet from the Studebaker Museum, I am happy to say it has everything it was ordered with. Engine number matches and all the accessories match. It's a 4bbl V8 with 3 speed overdrive, white walls, TT, Desert Tan, reclining seats, tinted glass, PCV, undercoating, Climatizer, "RUSH" "SOLD" Ship Via ML NYC CBQ DRGW SP Milpitas Conv Destination Napa, CA

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    Climatizer:





    Passenger side floor with pin holes.





    Driver's side.

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    Those calipers and brackets "appear" to be 68-69 Mustang, They are a bit too much for a Studebaker, That's why I went to the GM intermediate calipers.

    There is somewhere ONE set of brackets that will fit those calipers and brackets, but I do not know where!

    Jim

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    President Member TWChamp's Avatar
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    As far as welding, get rid of the flux core wire and buy a bottle of gas. All welds will be at least 10 times nicer without even trying.

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    I have an air compressor, motor and tank that looks like yours. I bought it used in the early 1970s. I thought that it was a homemade unit, but perhaps not. Right now, it needs a drive belt.
    Gary L.
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    SDC member since 1968
    Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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    Quote Originally Posted by TWChamp View Post
    As far as welding, get rid of the flux core wire and buy a bottle of gas. All welds will be at least 10 times nicer without even trying.

    Yep, that's what I keep hearing. I will before I start welding floors in the Hawk.

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    Quote Originally Posted by studegary View Post
    I have an air compressor, motor and tank that looks like yours. I bought it used in the early 1970s. I thought that it was a homemade unit, but perhaps not. Right now, it needs a drive belt.

    It's a Sears compressor.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Topper2011 View Post
    I know this seemed like a silly idea, but it will make sense in a bit.



    When a door on a Studebaker falls off the jack when the last bolt gives, it hurts when it hits you in the head. I had to drill out all six on the door side and will have to do the same on the bulkhead side. All the bolts are oxidized welded to each other.



    Decided to gut this door instead. It's an original door, the driver's is a replacement I'm guessing because of the green paint. I am planning on refurbishing the rubber bits, weatherstrips and cleaning and lubing all the mechanisms as they were pretty frozen. The driver's side hinge pins need replacing as the door never closed properly and slamming it isn't good for any part.



    Some rot I'll try my hand at fixing.



    and the reason for the door removal, access.
    They told you not to take it apart. Don't wanna take advice after asking for it +++++++++ Take the money from the motorcycle sale and buy a decent GT. At best you have a parts car. cheers jimmijim

    e
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Anything worth doing deserves your best shot. Do it right the first time. When you're done you will know it. { I'm just the guy who thinks he knows everything, my buddy is the guy who knows everything.} cheers jimmijim*****SDC***** member

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    Quote Originally Posted by Topper2011 View Post
    I'm done!



    Actually, this was my inspiration. My sister gave this to me and it started the wheels turning in my head. I am so glad it wasn't a tri-five.
    What did you do to your sister to make her so angry?
    Anything worth doing deserves your best shot. Do it right the first time. When you're done you will know it. { I'm just the guy who thinks he knows everything, my buddy is the guy who knows everything.} cheers jimmijim*****SDC***** member

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    Well then, it seems as though we have a hopeless dreamer here doing his very best to patch together a car that a long time ago would have been regulated to the scrap heap. I can see myself in a similar position in my near future, so I applaud you for progressing this far. However, don't give up, even though there will be times you most certainly will feel like doing so!
    Jake Kaywell: Shoo-wops and doo-wops galore to the background of some fine Studes. I'm eager and ready to go!

    1962 GT Hawk - completely finished in driveable condition.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TWChamp View Post
    As far as welding, get rid of the flux core wire and buy a bottle of gas. All welds will be at least 10 times nicer without even trying.
    Quote Originally Posted by Topper2011 View Post
    Yep, that's what I keep hearing. I will before I start welding floors in the Hawk.
    If doing extensive gas welding on the floor-pan you will need to install bracing in the door openings to forestall heat induced shrinkage. I didn't, and when I finished all my weld work, i discovered my door gaps had shrunk by about 1/4"!!! Had to slit my nice floor and use a hyd. ram to get things back where they belonged. Made for a lot of unneeded work to fix my fixings.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jimmijim8 View Post
    They told you not to take it apart. Don't wanna take advice after asking for it +++++++++ Take the money from the motorcycle sale and buy a decent GT. At best you have a parts car. cheers jimmijim

    e
    The amount I got for the cool GS1100E muscle bike won't pay for an interior for the Hawk.
    Yea, I know. My brothers had always told me to stay away British Cars, but no, I didn't listen. I ended up with 5 of them. 4 out of 5 didn't run when I got them, they did after not much effort and left running. I bought my 1956 Willys pickup, not run for 10 years. Two weeks later, I had it running. Yep, I replaced the brakes, changed all the lines, added a dual circuit master, changed out the T90/D18 trans for one with the BW overdrive. Attended quite a few Willys America Open House BBQ. I'm not completely talentless, here's my 1971 Suzuki Stinger the day I picked it up.














    I won 1st place in this show, Auburn 2014. Not that I think my Hawk will follow, just that I can be pretty determined when I want to.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimmijim8 View Post
    What did you do to your sister to make her so angry?
    I didn't upset my sister, but my wife sure is upset with my sister for igniting that thought.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jessie J. View Post
    If doing extensive gas welding on the floor-pan you will need to install bracing in the door openings to forestall heat induced shrinkage. I didn't, and when I finished all my weld work, i discovered my door gaps had shrunk by about 1/4"!!! Had to slit my nice floor and use a hyd. ram to get things back where they belonged. Made for a lot of unneeded work to fix my fixings.

    Well noted, thanks!

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stude Shoo-wop! View Post
    Well then, it seems as though we have a hopeless dreamer here doing his very best to patch together a car that a long time ago would have been regulated to the scrap heap. I can see myself in a similar position in my near future, so I applaud you for progressing this far. However, don't give up, even though there will be times you most certainly will feel like doing so!
    I believe if enough of the car is there, they can all be saved. I've had British cars and subscribed to Practical Classics Magazine. The cars in those articles would make my Hawk a concours winner. Those people in the UK aren't afraid of a little rot. I sold a couple of Brits from the Midlands a couple of MGB's a 73 chrome and a 77 rubber bumper. I showed them the crack of doom and the rotted doglegs and they laughed. They told me a 4 year old Escort has more rot than that. Well, if those Brits aren't afraid of a little rotted metal, this determined American isn't either.

    Speaking of dreaming, my inspiration of taking on this project. I present Rusty, one of my favorite threads on The Hamb.


    https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/...rtible.779564/
    Last edited by Topper2011; 07-09-2018 at 09:02 PM.

  39. #39
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    Good for you Topper2011 ! Keep it up, those of us that start with something others are afraid of know the trials and in the end, satisfaction that can be had. My Sunbeam Tiger looked much worse than your Hawk and after making sure it stopped and ran, drove it from 83 until 91 when the left front suspension broke and fell off in the driveway!!!! Know what I did ? Ran in and said" hey Karen, now we can really fix it up, cause it finally broke !" I sold it in 2010 and last I knew of it , it was on a turntable in a high-end showroom for sale....guess I "fixed it up" pretty nice ! Can't do the rough ones anymore because of health and location, sure miss it, but hooray for you ! I'll be following along waiting to see the end. Oh yeah, the bikes are little, but folks haven't experienced "hard to do or hard to get parts" until they do one of those rascals...done that too !

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Topper2011 View Post
    I believe if enough of the car is there, they can all be saved. I've had British cars and subscribed to Practical Classics Magazine. The cars in those articles would make my Hawk a concours winner. Those people in the UK aren't afraid of a little rot. I sold a couple of Brits from the Midlands a couple of MGB's a 73 chrome and a 77 rubber bumper. I showed them the crack of doom and the rotted doglegs and they laughed. They told me a 4 year old Escort has more rot than that. Well, if those Brits aren't afraid of a little rotted metal, this determined American isn't either.

    Speaking of dreaming, my inspiration of taking on this project. I present Rusty, one of my favorite threads on The Hamb.


    https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/...rtible.779564/
    It's possible, here's a shot of my 54K when I dragged it home in the early 90's with missing floors, a lot of missing lower sheetmetal and braces also. Took a number of years, MIG wire and a couple of sheets of 18 ga metal but came out pretty well.

    54 stude rough2.JPG 54 done.JPG

    The only problem is it now is second fiddle to a couple of Avanti's. Bob
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