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Thread: New Studebaker addition to the shop

  1. #1
    Speedster Member SilverHawkDan's Avatar
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    New Studebaker addition to the shop

    I have been working on the Studebaker to Chrysler Torqueflight adapter and stopped by the post office to check my PO box. Got a nice surprise package from a fellow Studebaker guy. Decided to hang it in the car for now. Makes it look good I think.


    I will throw in a current picture of the adapter.

    I will make a post in the mechanical section as soon as the project is completed and verified as a good alternative.
    Dan

  2. #2
    Silver Hawk Member JoeHall's Avatar
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    Why would you wanna put a Torque-Flight behind a Stude V? Much easier to go with GM. Maybe you just like challenges?

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    Speedster Member SilverHawkDan's Avatar
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    Joel,

    Good honest question. First I have been building transmissions for street and racing for over 50 years and I can tell you that there is not one GM transmission that will even come close to the TQ. The new TQ with OD and lock up converter is a great fully programmable unit that works far better than any GM unit and is 5 times stronger and will out live the GM units. The small block Mopar 904 and 727 transmissions are an almost dead ringer bolt pattern wise with the Stude. It actually is an easy adaption and I cannot figure out why no one has done it before. Simpler and easier than the GM adaption in my book. The 2002 Dodge transmission I am using has a 3.07 low gear, dual overdrives and lock up converter which will allow me to run a deep rear gear without sacrificing highway speeds or mileage. It will also survive with my supercharged engine. It is fully programmable and is built for trucks so it is much stronger than anything GM ever made. So I think in my opinion it is the way to go. But of course that is just my opinion. If it all works out well I will be marketing the conversion kit later this year.

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    Speedster Member Noxnabaker's Avatar
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    Sorry I can't help agreeing to this, I've had loads of Chevys + Buick & Cadillac & I really liked them a lot but I've also had Chryslers, Dodges & Plymouths & they are better.
    Just now I'm having a MoPar small block on an engine-stand that I borrowed from a Studebaker friend & it only has a plate with holes in to screw the engine to & it's really irritating how close the holes are to almost work together!
    So if you just drill the alu in the MoPar gearbox & alu-weld/fill what's left of the rest it will be sooo easy...
    & yep, I've got a MoPar s.b. in my Studebaker, fitted really good, only tight by the starter & steering-arm but easily fixed.
    My guess why Studebaker went for Chevy engines is the price...

  5. #5
    Golden Hawk Member StudeRich's Avatar
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    I am of the same opinion, I have always known that the Ford AOD and especially the Overdrive MoPars actually work well and LAST.

    When did you EVER hear of a GM Automatic OVERDRIVE that lasted many years of medium hard, high mileage usage and still works?
    Maybe a few, but the Majority of them do not.

    The GM THM-350 and 400's have few problems, but that could NEVER be said of any GM Overdrives, you have to overbuild them to the hilt with lots of expensive non-Factory, Hi-Performance Parts, or just plan on many replacements.
    StudeRich
    Second Generation Stude Driver,
    Proud '54 Starliner Owner




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    Quote Originally Posted by StudeRich View Post
    I am of the same opinion, I have always known that the Ford AOD and especially the Overdrive MoPars actually work well and LAST.

    When did you EVER hear of a GM Automatic OVERDRIVE that lasted many years of medium hard, high mileage usage and still works?
    Maybe a few, but the Majority of them do not.

    The GM THM-350 and 400's have few problems, but that could NEVER be said of any GM Overdrives, you have to overbuild them to the hilt with lots of expensive non-Factory, Hi-Performance Parts, or just plan on many replacements.
    I had an S10 4x4 Blazer for a few years with a 4.3 V6 and a 700R4 OD automatic. I bought the truck from the second owner, who bought it when it was a year old, and we both drove it hard. When I sold it, it was 22 years old and had well over 200K miles on it, and was still going strong. The engine and trans had never had any repair work done.

    I've never owned any Mopars, but the GM automatic I had seemed bulletproof. Just my one time experience. I doubt that mine was the only "good" one.

  7. #7
    Silver Hawk Member JoeHall's Avatar
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    When the OP said TQ, I thought of a 56J I once drove with a 3-speed TQ behind the Packard V8. It felt near identical to another 56J I put a TH400 in, and drove over 40,000 miles.

    I did not, but should have known Mopar now makes TQs with overdrive and TC lockup, that is good news. A modern TQ should be comparable to their GM counterparts, kinda like the two 3-speeds mentioned above. The overbuilt design, meant to withstand mega horsepower does not interest me in the least though, in either GM or TQ.

    As for OEM, modern GM transmissions not up for the long haul, I believe millions of GM owners out there would argue with that. I have one in the 63GT now with nearly 100,000 miles on it, including about 20,000 we have driven it. Upon removal from the van it was originally in, I simply re-sealed it and installed it into the GT. So far, have had to add two pints of ATF. Not sure what more a person could want out of a transmission.

    It is nice to have options though, and I hope the OP puts out such a kit.

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    Silver Hawk Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by StudeRich View Post
    When did you EVER hear of a GM Automatic OVERDRIVE that lasted many years of medium hard, high mileage usage and still works?
    Maybe a few, but the Majority of them do not.
    Rich

    You're better than that. This is GM country and there are a tremendous number on Silverado/GMC trucks running around here. My 2000 rusted out but never a tranny problem. Good friends 2002 1500 is still towing his 29 ft travel trailer all over and pushing 200,000 miles. The wrecking yards are full of them but mostly due to rust and wrecks. Very few go away due to tranny issues.

    An certainly trucks are much harder on them than cars.

    Am I a GM fan nope, like SBC's but not GM.

    My ride, just so I'm not branded a GM zealot.

    , ,

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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverHawkDan View Post
    I have been working on the Studebaker to Chrysler Torqueflight adapter and stopped by the post office to check my PO box. Got a nice surprise package from a fellow Studebaker guy. Decided to hang it in the car for now. Makes it look good I think.


    I will throw in a current picture of the adapter.

    I will make a post in the mechanical section as soon as the project is completed and verified as a good alternative.
    Dan

    Dan, I once sold a 54 Corvette, ser# E54S002001, is that it??

  10. #10
    Speedster Member SilverHawkDan's Avatar
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    If you have ever worked on all brands of transmissions then the quality of the shift between the GM and TQ is a lot better with the TQ. With the newer (1995 and up) hydraulic and electronic controlled transmissions you can program the shift points and using the throttle position signal even raise the line pressure to match more demanding driving situations. You can even set the speed and load settings to control the lock up feature. Transmission shops now offer cool kits to help make the TQ fit just about any application. While the debate about durability of the two transmissions rages on, as a builder I can tell you the TQ is better designed and built. But like the GM units there are years to avoid as both companies were trying to figure out how to make a better (insert cheaper) transmission that would make it through the warranty period without too many failures. My 2002 TQ looks just like the 1962 version on the outside of the front half with a bolt on overdrive planetary set added to the back half. They decided to use what had worked for them for years and just improve and modernize it instead of making and figuring out all the quirks of a whole new approach. So to each his own if the pre orders are any indication this kit when it becomes available will do well if and it is a big if I can find ways to keep the cost down as I know the targeted customers.

  11. #11
    Speedster Member SilverHawkDan's Avatar
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    I will check the serial number tomorrow and let you know. Did you live in California at the time as this car has never left California.

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    This Studebaker/Mopar transmission conversion is interesting, and as Dan has pointed out should prove to have several advantages.
    As far as the durability of GM's 700r4, over the last two decades I have racked up several million miles of hard usage without any transmission repairs or ever experiencing a single failure.
    My 2005 GMC Savana employed to haul my three food concession trailers, stock trailer and 30' travel trailer now has 587,654 miles on its original engine and transmission, neither having ever been apart.
    My previous 1995 Chevy G30 also exceeded 500k and was still running strong when I finally regretfully retired it and sold it off as the body succumbed to major rust.
    I believe what has allowed these transmissions to stand up to such long term and heavy use is the fact that all towing is religiously performed in D3, which is direct 1:1 drive.
    Once, early on with the '95, I accidentally towed about 20 miles of hilly freeway in O/D, and the tranny got so hot that heavy smoke was rolling off of it. Pulled over and looked it over, but had to get on to the next Fair. So I dropped it down into Drive and towed another 200 miles, figuring I was in for a trans replacement in short order. Did a fluid and filter change (fluid was burnt dark) and ended up putting another 350,000 trouble free miles on it.
    So. Three GM LWB work vans over the last 20 years, with the two in the drive right now having a cumulative 712,954 miles on them, with no trans repairs seems to be pretty satisfactory durability to me.
    I have little doubt that limiting towing to direct drive, either could reach a million miles. But that won't happen here in Michigan as the tin worms will consume them from the bottom up first.

    Have also owned four other 700r4 equipped daily driver family vehicles during this period, with no transmission problems ever.
    Now that I think about it, the only automatic I ever destroyed was the FoM in my '65 Cruiser, but at age 18 that was simply an opportune excuse to swap in that lusted for four on the floor.
    Last edited by Jessie J.; 03-16-2017 at 03:17 AM.

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    Speedster Member Quentin's Avatar
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    Is there a pre- electronic torque-flite with overdrive, a la the early GM T700 's?? (i.e bolt up and drive, no programming this and that). Cheers, Q

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    Speedster Member ndynis's Avatar
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    Off topic but is that a '56 Corvette in there? Great!

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    President Member acolds's Avatar
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    On the subject of transmission swaps has anyone tried or heard of anyone installing the Ford AOD transmission to the Studebaker V8 I have had better luck with the FOD than GM overdrive. Was thinking of working on using the AOD pre-computer controlled version which I have had with good results. Smooth shifting and long life in cars with weighted more than my Clipper and better performance levels than my supercharged 289. I would prefer to stay away from the added need for computer to control shifting and lockup the early Ford version did not need computer. The main advantage GM has is the number of units made I think Ford unit would be second most plentiful followed by Chrysler.

  16. #16
    Speedster Member Noxnabaker's Avatar
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    My wife had a Chevy with o.d. automatic & we always take good care to change oil & filter in good time but one day the gearbox seriously started to sound as if someone had thrown in stones in it. So we called the US car graveyard where we always go because it's close & they have everything & every US car & about 30 just like hers, but they were out of gearboxes!
    & asking around people we know who really knows US cars we sure understood that it's not unusual.
    We've also had Fords, AMC & so on but gearbox trouble only with GM.

    In my Studebaker there's a o.d. automatic from our old -89 Dodge van, running fine & pulling trailer &/or caravan.

    So why do we buy GM? Because of the same reason as the whole world does it:
    they're everywhere & not expensive.

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    You didn't say Nox, but is your Mopar transmissioned Studebaker still powered by a Studebaker engine? or a Mopar engine?
    Did you use the same method of adaption that Dan is showing here?

    edit; took a bit of searching but I located your old post.
    I only used MoPar engine, gearbox & rear axel!
    Last edited by Jessie J.; 03-16-2017 at 11:22 PM.

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    This adaption thread is of particular interest to me as I presently have a complete Mopar 833 4 speed o/d (3+o/d) manual set up and an extra o/d tranny all gathering dust under the work bench, and a 360 & TF sitting in the bed of my M-5.
    If I can ever find the time, the easiest method for me will be to fabricate a simple plate adapting the Mopar manual trans to Stude bell housing, or I may just drill the Mopar bolt pattern onto the large mounting faced truck bell housing that I picked up at the South Bend spring swap meet.
    As all of my late models are ho-hum equipped automatics, I prefer sticking with the old school 'three peddle' tradition in my just for fun ride, perfectly happy that it will drive like a (bit antiquated) 1960s automobile, but fully synchronized and with o/d.

    With 4 Studebaker's + three 'extra' Stude V-8's, a Chevy 350, Mopar 360, dual-quad and tri-power 390, 425 & 500 Caddy engines and trannys already on hand, my build options are many, the bummer being limited time to play.
    Last edited by Jessie J.; 03-17-2017 at 12:37 AM.

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    Dan, i think it is great , but i am on the old side , 904 727 , i like the early ones push bottons , when i was growing up street raceing withh a poly 318 , i took in my class fords& chevys on, beat most of them, in the 60s those were the days , i also had a 62 gt hawk 4 speed tt, that took some on to it done well also , i love the old tork flight trans,dannyo.

  20. #20
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    I'm not up on the newer Chrysler automatics, but I can assure you that the torqueflites of the 60s, 70s and early 80s gave our family dependable, trouble free service for many hundreds of thousands of miles in various Chrysler built cars of the day. The shift quality was always good too, quick and positive. I think developing an adapter to fit these transmissions to a Studebaker could only be a good thing.

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    Speedster Member Noxnabaker's Avatar
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    Jessie J #18; if you can get into Racing Studebakers & the non-Tudebaker-powered section my car is there as "Josephine, a MoParistic sedan".

    & if you measure you'll soon find out what fits best.
    I've had a Cadillacs with 429 & 472 & they all have their problems but if it's just a hobby car that doesn't matter ofcourse.
    I've always used my cars all year, even winter (aslo the -50 Windsor & -46 Chevy truck), & as Studebaker engines are fewer here I had to make a quicker fix & I did & I'm really satisfied exept that I'd rather have a 360 since there's hills here & horsepower = gas while torque helps you up...

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    Speedster Member SilverHawkDan's Avatar
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    Quentin, Yes there are non overdrive with lock up and then the later units were overdrive with lock up and hydraulically controlled (no computer) and then everything went computer controlled. The hydraulic controlled units work good and there is a company that makes a neat kit to help make it programmable to some extent. It is a good choice and the one I was planning on using before I got the "free" 2002 six speed transmission.

    - - - Updated - - -

    ndynis, No it is a 1954 model.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverHawkDan View Post
    I will check the serial number tomorrow and let you know. Did you live in California at the time as this car has never left California.


    Mine was an East coast car, restored in late 60's, sold in 1971, whereabouts now unknown..

  24. #24
    Speedster Member SilverHawkDan's Avatar
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    The Corvette is number E4S001819

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    I'm also following this with interest. My only comment about the O.D. chrysler trannys is that anyone with a 2nd generation ram truck knows it's not if, but when the tranny will fail....usually around 120,000. Mine did (as well as several of my friends too) & I do not abuse my vehicles.

    My interest is in adapting a tq to my '54 Kaiser Manhattan.
    Mike Sal

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    Not sure what 2nd gen is, but my 98 cummins has close to 200,000 with no trans problems. This is with hard use - pulling a goose neck horse trailer and at other times a 6,000 lb truck camper in the bed.

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