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Thread: New Member - '55 Studebaker E5

  1. #1
    Champion Member
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    New Member - '55 Studebaker E5

    Hello,

    I just recently picked up a 1955 Studebaker E5 truck to work on. It was was originally a straight six but now has what I am told is a '63 Studebaker V8. I still need to get the engine #'s and verify exactly what it is. I'm just getting started and wanted to see if anyone knows a good source for parts. I've wanted an old truck for quite some time now and am excited to begin working on this one. The Studebakers, in my opinion, are the best looking trucks from this era. Any help is appreciated! Thanks.

    driverside.jpgpassrear.jpgfront.jpgengine_1.jpg

    - Jason

  2. #2
    President Member
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    Hey Jason,

    Welcome! I don't know if this is your first Stude or not, but if it is, talk about starting out on the right foot! That is indeed a 63-64 engine. This link can help you find and decode your engine serial number, so you can know exactly what it came from.

    As far as parts go, there is a vast array of vendors who post on these forums. I think a few are even right in your neck of the woods. Studebaker International has a lot of NOS parts, and some reproduction/aftermarket parts. The Studebaker Swap page is a revolving classified ads page for Studebaker enthusiasts selling or looking for parts. Studebaker Vendors is sort of a portal to a bunch of parts vendors and suppliers. There are another million or so places I could send you, but that's a good start. Ask around here, too. The folks here are helpful. I got a great carburetor and a few odds and ends from fellow forum members.

    Again, thanks for popping by. Feel free to ask anything. I'm fairly new to owning a functional Stude, but the vast majority of people here are willing to help me with even the smallest issues. Last thought, if you haven't done so yet, join the Studebaker Drivers Club. Aside from getting a great monthly magazine, you also get access to a bunch of other resources, can join local chapters, and can access resources like the member roster, which is helpful when you get that guy who tells you "Call John Smith, he has what you need" but can't recall John's number to save his life.
    '63 Lark Custom, 259 v8, auto, toddler seat

    Visit my Studebaker-specific Blog - YouStude
    My "other" blog (Stude and non-Stude stuff) - Renaissance Jim

    "Your friendly neighborhood Studebaker evangelist"

  3. #3
    Speedster Member hawk58man's Avatar
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    Welcome to the Club..

  4. #4
    President Member Commander Eddie's Avatar
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    Welcome Jason to the world of Studebakers. I live a few hours down the road from you near Portland and am happy to let you know there are a number of Studebaker Driver's Club chapters in your area. The Northwest Chapter here in Portland will be hosting a Zone Meet in 2015 where you can meet Studebaker owners from across the entire Northwest region.
    You have scored a great truck! We will be anxious to watch your progress with it. Take advantage of all the assistance you can glean from this forum as well as many of the resources mentioned by JimC.
    I personally own a '61 Champ truck and love it. I drive it to work every day.
    Welcome aboard. Have fun.
    Ed Sallia
    Dundee, OR

    Sol Lucet Omnibus

  5. #5
    Silver Hawk Member jclary's Avatar
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    Hey Jason, welcome aboard. Hope your journey with your truck is as long and as much fun as mine.

    Below, is and example of how long mine has been. Just drove it to a meeting last night.

    Below, is a scanned photo of my wife and daughter taken in 1975

    Donnie&Niffy1975.jpg

    The next photo was taken with Jennifer driving the truck to a meet in 2009.

    Jen-July 4, 2009.jpg

    The meeting I went to, yesterday, lasted longer than I expected. It was dark when I went outside. When I turned on the lights, I realized one tail light has a grounding problem. Will have to fix that. It is the nature of these old relics...always some tinkering to do.
    John Clary
    Greer, SC


    SDC member since 1975

  6. #6
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    Thanks everyone for the info! I had a couple of other quick questions:

    1) Were the turn signals on top of the front fenders an option in 1955? Without those signals on top of the fender it appears there aren't any front turn signals?
    2) Ok, I know this is probably a dumb question but how do you operate the heater controls in the cab? I drove the truck from where I purchased it to a shop for a safety inspection with the heater on full blast in 90 degree weather and couldn't figure out how to turn it off.

    - Jason

  7. #7
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    Thanks everyone for the info! I had a couple of other quick questions:

    1) Were the turn signals on top of the front fenders an option in 1955? Without those signals on top of the fender it appears there aren't any front turn signals?
    2) Ok, I know this is probably a dumb question but how do you operate the heater controls in the cab? I drove the truck from where I purchased it to a shop for a safety inspection with the heater on full blast in 90 degree weather and couldn't figure out how to turn it off.

    Here's a photo of what they look like:
    1-39953.JPG


    - Jason

  8. #8
    Silver Hawk Member jclary's Avatar
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    The control that says "Water" should be pushed all the way in. Looks like yours is. It is very likely that the water valve cable is broken, not adjusted properly, or the heater water valve on the engine is broken/missing/ or replaced by another that is not controlled by the cable. After all these years, that is not unusual. Look under the hood at the hoses going from your heater to the engine. Somewhere there should be a shut-off valve. Also, if you have the factory heater, there is a door under the dash that needs to be closed. If it is open, you will get hot air.
    John Clary
    Greer, SC


    SDC member since 1975

  9. #9
    President Member 62champ's Avatar
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    From the photo under your hood - the climitizer water on/off valve is located on the passenger side of the water pump manifold - and it looks like it has no cable running to it. As John pointed out, it is probably stuck anyway and feeding the unit hot water - it doesn't care what the outside temps are. You can quickly fix it by putting a loop in the system and bypassing the climitizer.

    Signal lights were an option on trucks right up through 1960 on the 1/2 and 3/4 tons. If you do have signal light there should be something handing of the left side of the steering column.

    Good find and good luck.

  10. #10
    President Member Commander Eddie's Avatar
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    You may also be able to shut off the valve by simply pushing down on it from the top. You will see it slide closed. You will not be able to operate the heater from inside the cab until you get the cable reconnected to this valve.
    Ed Sallia
    Dundee, OR

    Sol Lucet Omnibus

  11. #11
    Silver Hawk Member
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    You scored, my new friend! There are those of us, myself chief among them, who are of the opinion the '55 V8 is the prettiest, best truck Studebaker ever built.

    Have fun and guaranteed here you'll get all the answers to your questions and some advice you didn't ask for but should consider the source. About the only change I'd make if you gave it to me is to put some real truck tires and wheels on it.

    jack vines
    PackardV8

  12. #12
    Speedster Member
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    E 5's

    Welcome .....
    E 5's are the best......
    Enjoy your project....

    Jeds 55
    Attached Images Attached Images

  13. #13
    President Member Deaf Mute's Avatar
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    You can also join the gang on the Studebaker Truck Talk Forum. Check it out at: http://www.network54.com/Forum/23885/ Truck parts are not all that hard to find... I wish my project looked as good as yours does!

  14. #14
    Golden Hawk Member
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    It was required to have Parking Lights on all Cars and Trucks, so yours WERE in the Fender behind the Headlight Rims which are missing.

    Front Turn signals could have been in the Parking Lights or separate, on the bumper or on top of the Fenders.

    The 1955's were 6 Volt Positive Ground, someone has converted possibly some, maybe all of the Electrics to 12 Volt Negative Ground, and changed the generator to a Chrysler Alternator.

    The 3 Heater Controls are simple to operate. The Left one Marked "AIR" is just a 2 speed Fan switch, twist to the right for High and Low speed.

    The Center Knob is turned right for Defrost (Windshield) and Left for Floor air flow.

    The Right Knob is pulled for the amount of Hot water you require, but as mentioned the Cable is gone.

    The Lever under the dash (moves forward and back) is for Fresh outside Air vs Recirculate Air for extreme "Alaska" type Weather you turn off the outside Air. There are left and Right Fresh Air inlets on the firewall for Summer Cooling that slide open.

    55Truck2.jpg 55Truck6.jpg
    Last edited by StudeRich; 08-10-2013 at 06:10 PM.
    StudeRich
    Second Generation Stude Driver
    Proud '54 Starliner Owner



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