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Thread: alignment of 1962 Studebaker

  1. #1
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    alignment of 1962 Studebaker

    Does anyone know if it takes special tools to align the front end on a 1962 Studebaker? I need a new set of tires and don't want to wear them out right away. I called a couple places and they didn' think they could do it.

    Thanks, Gene

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    It is not special tools, it is knowledge and apprehension. 99% of people working in car alignment shops have never worked on a king pin front end. You might do better asking in a truck shop. If a shop does not want to do it, appreciate that because they probably would not do a good job if they did do it.
    Gary L.
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    SDC member since 1968
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    If you have a shop manual, copy the pages they need to do the job right. Read them good so you can explain why they should too. Very important.

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    President Member bensherb's Avatar
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    Every time I've taken an older car to a shop for alignment, I've met with statements like "we don't have specs for that", one shop even told me "you can't align a VW". Heck, I took my 2001 Tundra to Goodyear for alignment; after their "aligning" it twice, it was no better than when I drove it in. Of course, they wouldn't give me my money back. I'm still looking for a competent alignment shop.

    I did align my VW, did it myself with a tape measure, a straight edge and a digital angle finder. Most my other old cars only have adjustment for toe-in so a tape works for them too, but these have much simpler front suspensions, than the more modern cars.

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    President Member christophe's Avatar
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    Any COMPETENT front end shop should be able to do this.
    Bring them all the info and tell them that caster and camber are adjusted by turning the upper outer pin with an allen wrench, after releasing the clamp and removing the rear grease fitting. All this is explained in thes shop manual.
    I enclose the specs.
    You can also do it yourself with simple tools. This takes some time but this is much rewarding.
    Nice day to all.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Gary and Christophe are correct. An alignment shop that does trucks can handle it and take the specs and a copy of the pages from the service manual that shows the how to. As stated, if they balk at doing it, go down the road. In my town of 35,000 souls we have an excellent shop that can handle about anything you drag in. A bit of searching should turn one up in most areas.

    Dave the owner of Gary's Alignment here put the alignment in my 83 Avanti with 8" wide rims and large footprint tires and it's dead straight on a flat road. He wouldn't do it until I rebuilt the entire front suspension, though.

    Bob
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    Thanks a Lot for all of your help, I appreciate it. One thing I don't know much about is all of the different models of Studebaker. I know Lark and Hawk, but K, P, and Y what are they? I have a Lark, what would that be called?

    Thanks, Gene

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    President Member RadioRoy's Avatar
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    The letters indicate the body style. W is a four door sedan, D is a two door station wagon, F is a two door sedan and so forth. Look on the firewall, on the right side of the car and there is a tag with large letters and numbers. Tell us what that says, please.
    RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

    17A-S2 - 50 Commander convertible
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    10G-Q4 - 51 Champion business coupe
    4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
    5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon
    56B-D4 - 56 Commander station wagon
    60V-L6 - 60 Lark convertible

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    President Member christophe's Avatar
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    You're welcome Gene.
    Here they are.
    Basically, K is for a hardtop Hawk. All other letters apply to the various Lark models (except for C which is a pillared Hawk).
    Wow, Roy. We hit the enter button at the same time!
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    Last edited by christophe; 01-31-2019 at 12:05 PM.

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    Darn guys, I got sidetracked, you wanted the numbers off of the firewall, sorry. they are 62SY4 and right below is 2549.

    Thanks, Gene

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drifter22 View Post
    Darn guys, I got sidetracked, you wanted the numbers off of the firewall, sorry. they are 62SY4 and right below is 2549.

    Thanks, Gene
    That is a 1962 Lark Deluxe four door sedan with a six cylinder engine.
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
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    Quote Originally Posted by RadioRoy View Post
    The letters indicate the body style. W is a four door sedan, D is a two door station wagon, F is a two door sedan and so forth. Look on the firewall, on the right side of the car and there is a tag with large letters and numbers. Tell us what that says, please.
    These (W & D) are not for 1962 models (F is).
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
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    When you have the front end aligned. Be careful that they tighten the tie rod ends, specifically the clamps. Mine were not tightened and rotated and after I had driven 200 miles to a zone meet i was trailing oil out of the recently rebuilt engines oil pan. I would have the tie rod swapped end for end just to be safe, even with a competent front end shop.

    Mark

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    Studebaker alignment

    Yesterday I took the Studebaker to get it aligned. After a bit the guy came and told me the lower control arm bushings were bad and needed replaced before he could do it. He gave me a price to do it; $857.28 for 2 bushings that cost $52.20, their price. Pretty steep I thought. AutoZone has them from $17.99 to $64.99. Does anyone know what I need and where to get it?
    My Lark has a 259 ci V8 in it, so I guess someone along the way swapped engines. I don’t know if that was a good thing or not.
    Mark you said: I would have the tie rod swapped end for end just to be safe, what would that do?

    I tried to post this last night and was almost done when my curser took off and would run backwards on every line till it was in the top left hand corner. I would put it to where I needed it, and away it would go again!! Have any of you guys ever had this happen?
    I fought it for awhile and then went to bed.


    Gene
    Gene Shambaugh

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    Quote Originally Posted by studegary View Post
    That is a 1962 Lark Deluxe four door sedan with a six cylinder engine.
    My Lark has a 259 ci V8 in it, so I guess someone along the way swapped engines. I don’t know if that was a good thing or not.
    Yes, No, Maybe. The V8 cars have stiffer front springs and larger brakes. Does your car seem to sit too low in front?

    I would have the tie rod swapped end for end just to be safe,
    Mark . . . what would that do?
    If the ends with the clamping bolts are under the oil pan and if the front end shop doesn't tighten them with the bolts on the bottom, the bolts can scrape a hole in the oil pan.

    jack vines
    PackardV8

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    $800 for labor for the bushings does sound a bit steep but they do need to drop the control arm with spring pressure on it, remove the control arm, push out the old bushings, push in the new ones and reinstall against spring pressure. Double that for both sides. Eight hours @ $100/hr might account for that procedure. I'm not sure what the service manual would say but it would be a couple of hours per side I'll bet and that's not with a 70+/- year old suspension.

    If you do decide to do the repair, have the upper ones done as well, you've already paid for most of the labor but check around first to see if another garage may be less expensive.

    I guess that's why I have a polebarn full of tools to not pay for those repairs. Bob
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  17. #17
    Golden Hawk Member StudeRich's Avatar
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    $857.28 for TWO Lower "A" Arm bushings with installation? That's only ONE Side!

    THAT is just crazy, if 2 are bad it needs 8, not 2. That's 4 Lower and 4 Upper and the Upper are the MOST likely to be needed due to more movement and wear.
    StudeRich
    Second Generation Stude Driver,
    Proud '54 Starliner Owner




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    Yes, No, Maybe. The V8 cars have stiffer front springs and larger brakes. Does your car seem to sit too low in front?
    No, Jack, it sets ok, looks good to me.
    Well, I guess I might as well do it all, Thanks, Guys!
    How do you keep all of those Studebakers going Roy, this one keeps me busy. I have a barn with a hoist in it, but a friend has his Gator on it waiting on parts.

    Thanks for your help. Gene

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    Hi Gene,
    Another notation for you would be "do you have radial tires installed?"
    Have your guy compensate for the switch to radials from the original bias ply specifications as they track entirely differently.
    Luck,
    Bill

  20. #20
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    What Jack said. I had a hole dug into my oil pan by the lose bolt/clamp. Not fun or nice on a recently rebuilt engine.

    Mark

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    800.00 for 2 bushings is just plain ridiculous. That is so insulting. Freaking rip off Rat Bastars. 400.00 for the bushing replacement on both upper and lowers is a fair price. Labor only but you possibly may be able to do better but I doub't it. Recently I had 2 wires that I wanted soldered onto a model train track power clip. I only have use of one hand and needed it done. Went to a place that installs custom sound equipment in vehicles. I kinda figured bout 5 bucks and a tip of another 5 ought to be sufficient. Before I went there unannounced I made sure I had a 10 dollar bill. Well, as I first pulled up to the store, an employee I suppose after seeing my wheelchair in the MAGA mobile truck bed gave me curb service. I didn't ask for a price for such a menial request cause I didn't want to seem like a tight arss. After waiting in my truck a couple minutes, here he is at my door. me says "Well sir, thank you very much" "How much do I owe you? 20.00 he says. I previously thought to myself that he was gonna possibly gift me as I would still have given him 10.00. I gave him my debit card. I wouldn't go back there If they were having a buy one get two free sale. Don't matter as I am broke now till the beginning of next month. cheers jimmijim
    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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    Almost no one knows how to do it. Now days it is all computer gizmos and the guy doing it knows zip. I decided with Ceci's 62 and with my 64 just to do it myself. I do have a gadget to check caster. It takes a mason line and spacers to check toe in- and patience. Both of them are perfect!( You could maybe use a good non-harbor freight level to check caster.)

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    GEE, jimmijim I'm sorry that &*#@ Ripped you off like that!! Some people are so greedy now days. I got her on the hoist now and the front tires off, but it's going to take me awhile as I have to many things going now, but I'll keep in touch. Does anyone know where I could get a set of bushing for the front of this? I just been finding a couple here and there, haven't bought any yet.

    Gene

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drifter22 View Post
    GEE, jimmijim I'm sorry that &*#@ Ripped you off like that!! Some people are so greedy now days. I got her on the hoist now and the front tires off, but it's going to take me awhile as I have to many things going now, but I'll keep in touch. Does anyone know where I could get a set of bushing for the front of this? I just been finding a couple here and there, haven't bought any yet.

    Gene
    Google Studebaker Vendors but there are a number I use and they will have all the parts including rebuilt kingpins. Studebaker International - Indiana and Stephan Allen - Florida but there are more than that. We are lucky to have the parts support that not many old orphan brands enjoy.

    Get a Service Manual and also enjoy and learn from Bob Johnstone's excellent collection of Studebaker and Avanti projects and repairs over the years. http://www.studebaker-info.org/rjtechdec2017p1g.html

    Bob
    Last edited by sweetolbob; 02-14-2019 at 08:33 AM.
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