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  • #16
    For those of you who want more details on the various Porsche-Studebaker cars, take a look at Dede Sewards' blog:
    https://dedeporsche.com/2012/11/03/p...ject-type-542/
    She certainly found a lot of the history and some good photos, including the stuff on my website, LOL!

    The strange positioning of the trunk lid was not done by Curtis-Wright or Studebaker. I don't think the Lark ever made it South Bend, just the C-W facility in NJ. The lid change was done by the last owner because the car overheated frequently. Curtis-Wright put the engine in the trunk behind an incredibly thick steel plate and installed a small Porsche vent in the trunk lid. The rear windshield was narrowed and 1/4" thick steel plates were used to replace the corners and stiffen the body. Apparently there was not enough air circulation. The car was never intended for production, just as a mule to eventually test Wankel rotary engines. They didn't get beyond evaluating how the car performed with the tiny 1300 cc Porsche engine, which certainly weighed much less than the Champ 6 with automatic that the car originally came with. Porsche's only involvement in this car was to sell C-W a used, rebuilt circa 1953 Porsche engine that they apparently had in a warehouse in NJ. I drove the car around the circle in my driveway on one day and noted that it didn't have any "punch", though it might have been interesting to try it on some winding country roads with the engine wound up. [Tom Walgamuth: you would have loved an opportunity like that!] When it was at my house, it didn't have the hydraulic brakes working, only the handbrake, and the dual Weber carbs gushed gas all over the place. I had to shut it down before it caught fire, and that would have been embarrassing. I was just babysitting the car for a few weeks until the transporter arrived to haul it to the Museum. However, the previous owner had driven it all over New England for many years before the car was donated to the museum, so it was roadable - or had been. I'm sure that getting the carbs rebuilt and installing some new wheel cylinder kits and brake shoes would have the car running just fine. I've dreamed about seeing it driving around at a meet in South Bend. I'll help raise the money.

    The small Porsche Type 633 car was an entirely different project.

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    Gary Ash
    Dartmouth, Mass.

    '32 Indy car replica (in progress)
    ’41 Commander Land Cruiser
    '48 M5
    '65 Wagonaire Commander
    '63 Wagonaire Standard
    web site at http://www.studegarage.com

    Comment


    • #17
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ID:	1711393Taken at the SNM this past May...

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      • #18
        This takes my memory back many years to when I was offered that Porsche powered Lark when it was "unearthed" in the warehouse in NJ. I didn't want it.
        Gary L.
        Wappinger, NY

        SDC member since 1968
        Studebaker enthusiast much longer

        Comment


        • #19
          I received the April issue of Collectible Automobile today and there's a nice article about the 542 project.
          Last edited by Bordeaux Daytona; 01-24-2017, 05:51 AM.

          Comment


          • #20
            Originally posted by garyash View Post
            For those of you who want more details on the various Porsche-Studebaker cars, take a look at Dede Sewards' blog:
            https://dedeporsche.com/2012/11/03/p...ject-type-542/
            She certainly found a lot of the history and some good photos, including the stuff on my website, LOL!

            The strange positioning of the trunk lid was not done by Curtis-Wright or Studebaker. I don't think the Lark ever made it South Bend, just the C-W facility in NJ. The lid change was done by the last owner because the car overheated frequently. Curtis-Wright put the engine in the trunk behind an incredibly thick steel plate and installed a small Porsche vent in the trunk lid. The rear windshield was narrowed and 1/4" thick steel plates were used to replace the corners and stiffen the body. Apparently there was not enough air circulation. The car was never intended for production, just as a mule to eventually test Wankel rotary engines. They didn't get beyond evaluating how the car performed with the tiny 1300 cc Porsche engine, which certainly weighed much less than the Champ 6 with automatic that the car originally came with. Porsche's only involvement in this car was to sell C-W a used, rebuilt circa 1953 Porsche engine that they apparently had in a warehouse in NJ. I drove the car around the circle in my driveway on one day and noted that it didn't have any "punch", though it might have been interesting to try it on some winding country roads with the engine wound up. [Tom Walgamuth: you would have loved an opportunity like that!] When it was at my house, it didn't have the hydraulic brakes working, only the handbrake, and the dual Weber carbs gushed gas all over the place. I had to shut it down before it caught fire, and that would have been embarrassing. I was just babysitting the car for a few weeks until the transporter arrived to haul it to the Museum. However, the previous owner had driven it all over New England for many years before the car was donated to the museum, so it was roadable - or had been. I'm sure that getting the carbs rebuilt and installing some new wheel cylinder kits and brake shoes would have the car running just fine. I've dreamed about seeing it driving around at a meet in South Bend. I'll help raise the money.

            The small Porsche Type 633 car was an entirely different project.

            [ATTACH=CONFIG]60362[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]60363[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]60364[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]60365[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]60366[/ATTACH]
            You got me figured out.
            Diesel loving, autocrossing, Coupe express loving, Grandpa Architect.

            Comment


            • #21
              http://studebaker-info.org/studepors...porsche08.html

              Comment


              • #22
                More here!
                https://56packardman.com/2016/07/05/...ed-by-porsche/

                Comment


                • #23
                  Originally posted by rkapteyn View Post
                  Note my response to this excellent article.
                  Gary L.
                  Wappinger, NY

                  SDC member since 1968
                  Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    It is interesting how the engines in the link show bolted valve covers, while the engine in E.T. Reynold's autobiography in the December, 1973 Car Classics magazine shows one with the valve covers held down with spring wire.



                    Craig

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                    • #25
                      And, for those who are a little more interested, here's some correspondence between the two companies.....

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                      '53 Commander
                      Art Morrison chassis
                      LS6 ASA/4L60E

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Originally posted by ralt12 View Post
                        And, for those who are a little more interested, here's some correspondence between the two companies.....
                        VERY interesting information!

                        Thanks for posting that! I'll bet RQ doesn't even have those letters in his collection!!

                        Craig

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Were those V6s metric or SAE? Why did the Porsche-Lark have a three part rear window with the corners painted over?
                          1963 Champ "Stu Bludebaker"- sometimes driver
                          1957 Silver Hawk "Josie"- picking up the pieces after an unreliable body man let it rot for 11 years from an almost driver to a basket case
                          1951 Land Cruiser "Bunnie Ketcher" only 47M miles!
                          1951 Commander Starlight "Dale"- basket case
                          1947 Champion "Sally"- basket case
                          1941 Commander Land Cruiser "Ursula"- basket case

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            Doug:

                            The rear window of the Porsche Lark had glass in the center and formed 1/4" steel plate at the corners. To fit the Porsche engine and VW Transporter transaxle in, a lot of the body and frame had to be cut away. To reinforce the body and frame and create a mounting surface, a big steel plate was added as a rear firewall between the engine compartment and rear seat. I think those steel "window corners" were welded to the firewall plate for stiffness. See my full notes back in Post #16 of this thread. Again, the Porsche Lark had nothing to do with the Type 542 being discussed here.

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                            Gary Ash
                            Dartmouth, Mass.

                            '32 Indy car replica (in progress)
                            ’41 Commander Land Cruiser
                            '48 M5
                            '65 Wagonaire Commander
                            '63 Wagonaire Standard
                            web site at http://www.studegarage.com

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Originally posted by 8E45E View Post
                              VERY interesting information!

                              Thanks for posting that! I'll bet RQ doesn't even have those letters in his collection!!

                              Craig
                              Those letters are from the Porsche Museum and were part of the Porsche exhibit at the Petersen Museum in L.A.
                              '53 Commander
                              Art Morrison chassis
                              LS6 ASA/4L60E

                              Comment

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