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View Full Version : stubaker front end or 49 ford front end?



bosshoss61
12-01-2013, 05:52 AM
I found this one on Craig's list in Des Moines. Sure looks like a 49 ford borrowed the bullet from Studebaker. :)30050

57pack
12-01-2013, 06:53 AM
For a great comparison, watch the movie
Stand By Me. Great scene of a 1951 Studebaker
and 1949 Ford racing side by side down a
country road.

tbredehoft
12-01-2013, 08:23 AM
There is a story there, but since I've only heard it third or fourth hand, I'll hope someone closer to the heart of it will relate it. Yes, they are related.

GinettaG12P
12-01-2013, 10:19 AM
There was a story in Turning Wheels that revealed that Bob Bourke had a hand in designing both the Studebaker and the Ford grilles.

Jerry Forrester
12-01-2013, 10:44 AM
I found this one on Craig's list in Des Moines. Sure looks like a 49 ford borrowed the bullet from Studebaker. :)30050
But the Ford bullet nose was a year earlier than the Stude bullet.
That's kind of like saying Cadillac copied Studebaker's engine design.

Jessie J.
12-01-2013, 11:53 AM
Not Bourke himself, but one of his co-workers on the Loewy design team that Bourke helped arrange to work after hours on the design of the upcoming new Ford, and whom Ford afterwards hired.
(he would have certainly been out of a job at Loewy Associates and Studebaker following this anyway)

He 'borrowed' and employed the bullet theme that was still being explored at Studebaker.
Thus, although the 1949 Ford was first to introduce this 'bullet' theme, it was drawn from Studebaker's design studio.
This has all been quite well documented.

studegary
12-01-2013, 12:06 PM
The 1949 Ford was primarily designed by Robert Bourke to aid a fellow designer that was going to lose his job with Loewy Studios. Bob Bourke and Holden "Bob" Koto helped this guy with the design that pretty much became the Ford design. The guy did get a job at Ford from this effort. The work was done after hours at the guy's home (kitchen). Moving the taillights from vertical to horizontal was the biggest change in the design.
I can't think of the other designer's name just now. There was a thread/topic about him here on this Forum recently.
That is why the '49 Ford and the '50 Studebaker had similar "bullets". They were designed by the same guy.
I have found that some of the "history" on this, particularly what has been put out by Ford folks, differs from first hand accounts.

Jessie J.
12-01-2013, 12:22 PM
Bob Bourke was around for a long time after this, and to the best of my knowledge, never claimed nor took credit for the 1949 Ford's design.

It is difficult to impossible at this late date to determine whom it was at those after hour kitchen design sessions that drew what lines.
Ford having accepted the design, made little change other than rotating the taillights from vertical to horizontal.

studegary
12-01-2013, 12:44 PM
Bob Bourke was around for a long time after this, and to the best of my knowledge, never claimed nor took credit for the 1949 Ford's design.

It is difficult to impossible at this late date to determine whom it was at those after hour kitchen design sessions that drew what lines.
Ford having accepted the design, made little change other than rotating the taillights from vertical to horizontal.

Bob Bourke was never one to blow his own horn. You had to get to know him and be in a long conversation at a bar or over dinner before you got anything that mattered out of him. I have seen him sit at a dinner table and sketch the '49 Ford and talk about it with me. He did give "Bob" Koto a lot of credit for his work on this endeavor. He really liked the other designer, as a guy not as a designer, and tried hard to get him employment in the field.
I have an audio recording of Bob Bourke discussing designs, but I am not going to dig it out now.

Jessie J.
12-01-2013, 02:27 PM
There is a very informative thread on this subject on H.A.M.B naming names and whom and how. http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=770745&highlight=bob+bourke&showall=1

studegary
12-01-2013, 03:13 PM
There is a very informative thread on this subject on H.A.M.B naming names and whom and how.



That is an interesting read that appears to be a copy of something that someone else wrote/published. I did not notice a credit given, but the poster is from KY as Jessie J. is. Is the poster you or someone that you know or are related to?
Dick Caleal is the name that didn't immediately come to mind for me. He is the guy that was going to be let go by Loewy Studios and used the design to get a job at Ford.
I know that Caleal's daughter has been pushing for a lot of credit for her father. I can understand that, but keep in mind that she was not even born when these events took place.
I wonder if the writer of this article knew any of those involved or just pieced together things that had been written before or used second hand, or further, information.

Jessie J.
12-01-2013, 03:27 PM
That is an interesting read that appears to be a copy of something that someone else wrote/published. I did not notice a credit given, but the poster is from KY as Jessie J. is. Is the poster you or someone that you know or are related to?
No, I am in no way acquainted with that poster, only read this recently.
Hadn't noticed where the poster was from until your mention. No 'collusion' in play here.


Dick Caleal is the name that didn't immediately come to mind for me. He is the guy that was going to be let go by Loewy Studios and used the design to get a job at Ford.
I know that Caleal's daughter has been pushing for a lot of credit for her father. I can understand that, but keep in mind that she was not even born when these events took place.
I wonder if the writer of this article knew any of those involved or just pieced together things that had been written before or used second hand, or further, information.
I note that the initial model fashioned by Caleal, and through Walker presented to Ford show no indications of any 'bullet' nose, nor do the relatively expensive 'in house' full size clays subsequently developed from that model.
This to me strongly suggests that Bourke's well known 'bullet' nose was not at all any part of the original Caleal 'kitchen table' design.
And was a feature added on very late in the development of the 1949 Ford line.

And I must add, as a life long admirer of Robert Bourke's designs, I would perhaps be the among those most passionate about giving him credit for the 1949 Ford's grill design (which I very much like) and which I do believe was 'borrowed' to some degree, but in light of the evidence turned up, I must doubt that it was part of Caleal's presented design in 1946.

If it was '99%' Bourke's design, it did NOT contain whatever % it would be that comprised the infamous bullet grill.
The photo evidence indicates that someone suffered from a faulty memory.

Bullet
12-01-2013, 05:27 PM
57 Pack, that is my Studebaker in the Stand By Me movie, also the same one in my signature avatar. The movie company rented the car from me for $500, gave it a paint job (I was just ready to paint, so all primered when they got it) put in an ultra cheap vinyl upholstery and gave the car back to me. My wife, young daughter and I watched the filming of "chicken scene" Still have the car, owned it now for 37 years.

Mark

p.s. a majority of the filming was done around Eugene and Brownsville OR. Brownsville has a yearly salute to "Stand By Me" in August each year.

studegary
12-02-2013, 01:30 PM
Bob Bourke quotes (speaking about the 1950 Studebaker): "The first thing we came up with was the spinner-nose for 1950." The feature began earlier than the Tucker - during the War. "The spinner nose front end was developed to compete with a new front end that Ex had done." "Ex's front end was closer in concept to the '49 Ford approach or similar to early 1941-1942 design perspectives I had done during the period I worked for him. Loewy desired something more distinctive at the time. As manager and chief designer, it was my job to reflect Loewy's wishes. There was a competition, management picked the Loewy design over Exner's for production. The spinner would not have reached production if management had picked Ex's job instead of the Loewy job. Management would listen to Loewy, but he was never in a position to insist that management produce any given design."

This design was presented to management in 1947 for the 1949 model. Management decided to build the 1949 as a facelift to the 1948 model and make 1950 the year of a larger design change. Of course, insistance on using the old cowl and other things watered down the designers' idea for the 1950 model.

In speaking of Bourke and Koto relative to the 1949 Ford design, I am referring to the overall design and not simply the bullet nose. For example, Bob Bourke was disappointed that his vertical taillights were not retained for production.

Designers do not work in a vacuum. They often work with others or use ideas from others. For example, Bob Bourke told me that his inclusion of the swoop on the side of the 1953 was lifted from Duesenberg. It was added to prevent the possibility of drumming of the door panel. I guess that Studebaker no longer considered it necessary after Loewy left as it was eliminated with the 1957 models.