View Full Version : Parade Participation...a little apprehensive.

05-19-2016, 09:17 PM
Tonight, at our monthly "Faith Riders" meeting, I was asked to bring my truck to participate in our local upcoming Armed Forces Day parade. They want to use my truck to place our magnetic Logo signs, and carry a banner. I've had this truck for over forty years, and driven it to countless shows, and cruise-ins. What I have not done, is entered it in parades. Last fall, I had it in our little parade jaunt through Maggie Valley, N.C. that has been part of the great fall meet. But, not much outside of our Studebaker world. Traditionally, this is a pretty well attended event, with lots of participants, and a fairly long route with lots of attention.

I was flattered when asked if I would bring the truck, and agreed to do it without hesitation. However, after the meeting, I'm having second thoughts. I'll have to find some time to check everything very carefully. Make sure the master cylinder is full, brakes are good, oil, coolant, etc. The last thing I want to do is have the truck falter, and have to stop and raise the hood in front of all those people.:oops::QQ: It's been raining for a couple of days. I almost hope it keeps raining and they have to cancel:ohmy:...but...being a combat veteran myself, I know it is for a good cause.:) I just don't want to embarrass myself, or discredit Studebaker because of my lousy mechanical skills:rolleyes::o Wish me luck...I need all I can get.:)

05-19-2016, 09:39 PM
I drive our fire company's 1938 Mack pumper in parades from time to time.
I keep a close eye on the temp gauge as she tends to warm up.
It has a pump throttle which I can operate without engaging the pump. When the temp gauge goes up I just increase the Rpms to kick up the engine fan. Brings down temp but makes more fan noise.
Maybe install an electric radiator fan connected to a toggle switch.
If temp goes up, flip the switch.

05-19-2016, 09:50 PM
I have been invited to bring our truck, a '47 M5 to several parades.
I found out that while you are setting in line waiting for the go sign, the engine should be shut off.
......When you are moving in the parade.....DON'T shut the engine down........IT will increase the temperature.......And cause problems...........Good luck, enjoy the festivities........

Skip Lackie
05-20-2016, 08:07 AM
Some parades move at too slow a pace to make driving a stick shift vehicle with a normal rear axle ratio convenient -- ie, lots of clutch in and out in first gear. Lots of wear on the clutch and your left leg, and a tendency to overheat. If you have a 4.88 axle, you may be able to just idle along in first gear. I don't like automatics much, but they're better for parades.

05-20-2016, 08:25 AM
One of the earliest "add-on" items I put on my plain little truck (around 1975) was a manual throttle. Not only is it great for warming the engine on a cool morning, but on the few excursions I've made into the "flat-lands," it makes a pretty convenient poor man's cruise control. However, it's best use is for idle control. I've found that on very hot days, if you bump the idle up in slow traffic, the engine cools better. There's a "sweet spot" for optimum cooling. I've also found that if you bump it up just a little beyond the sweet spot, it can interfere with the overdrive kicking in when lifting the accelerator. It is a "feel" that comes with experience. I've decided to pull the overdrive cable out for the parade, so there will be no freewheeling.

Today, it is cold, rainy, and blustery. Unless the weather breaks, there might not be a parade.

Mark L
05-20-2016, 05:29 PM
It might be a good idea to see if the parade organizers require you to carry freakishly high liability coverage. I thought I'd get some applications for our chapter to participate in local parades, but the organizers usually want EACH driver to have really high coverage, plus absolve the organizers and just about every citizen of any responsibility if anything does happen (ie, throttle sticks wide open and a Studebaker lunges through the crowd, backfire causes horses to stampede. etc.).

Driving a vehicle in a parade is so much fun (I'm serious, I've done it before and it's a blast), and it would be a great way to get a Studebaker in front of a large audience. Just make sure you understand your responsibilities before you agree.

05-20-2016, 06:19 PM
I have run my 60 T Bird convertible in Parades. I was afraid of overheating, and an 'Old pro' told me to take the thermostat out. I did and have done it for every parade, and no overheating but it does get warm from time to time

05-21-2016, 07:06 PM
WOO HOO! The parade went off without a hitch! The little Stude ran like a "Champ." The first pic was at the staging area. I was right behind the Chick- Fil-A Cow, with folks dressed in Cow suits walking alongside the float. In the second pic, the lady in the red pants was giving little stuffed cows to folks along the route. Somehow...as seen in the third pic...one ended up on my dash. After about a mile, I finally found a break in the crowd to take the pic of the truck's reflection in a store window.

It was a great experience. The truck was a big hit, and you could hear folks making positive comments as I approached. The fun part was the often heard "OH LOOK!" as I got close enough for them to notice the little pedal truck mounted on back. I was surprised at the size of the parade, the crowd, and the length of the route. If they would block off traffic, waive me through the lights, and provide such special treatment every time I visit...I'd go downtown more often.:!:;)

54354 54355 54356 54357

Chris Pile
05-21-2016, 11:08 PM
Well done, John!

05-21-2016, 11:19 PM
Very good job John! :!:

Is the sign on the door about the "Faith Riders" or does it mention Studebaker?

05-21-2016, 11:29 PM
Very good job John! :!:

Is the sign on the door about the "Faith Riders" or does it mention Studebaker?

Yes, the sign on the door is for our chapter of the Faith Riders. They are magnetic signs. The three chrome "Studebaker" ornaments on the hood, and the huge lettering on the tailgate more than mention Studebaker...they say it with style.:!:

Still...you occasionally hear someone ask, "Did they really make trucks?":confused:

Mark L
05-21-2016, 11:34 PM
Outstanding! Parades are so much fun when the lawyers aren't around. I'm glad you decided to go ahead and participate.

05-21-2016, 11:50 PM
I had to look around in my files for a pic showing it from the back. This is a pic my wife's cousin took when I stopped by on the way back from picking up a bag of chicken feed. I think the tailgate lettering leaves little doubt regarding who made this truck.;)

05-22-2016, 05:43 AM
Or who owns it , as the license plate frame states ;)