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Perception of what a Studebaker Looks Like

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  • Perception of what a Studebaker Looks Like

    Last evening I went to the Wappinger Town Board Meeting. Upon entering the meeting room, I was greeted by the Recreation Director. The first thing that she said was something to the effect of why wasn't I wearing a shirt with a Studebaker. I had on a sweatshirt with "Avanti" and a profile/side view of an early Avanti. I told her that it was a Studebaker. She said that she thought that all Studebakers were boxy. She went into the room and Googled for Studebaker pictures. She first came up with a '53 Commander Starliner and then a white '64 Avanti (that I believe may have been one that I have owned). She will probably look up more. Now she knows that all Studebakers are not boxy. She would not be considered to be a youngster.
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
    Studebaker enthusiast much longer

  • #2
    I assumed that most non-Studebaker people would think of a 1950 or 1951 bullet-nose type car when they visualize a Studebaker. Perhaps most non-Studebaker people actually visualize a Lark-type?
    By the way Gary, did you mention to the lady that Studebaker also built pickups and trucks?
    sigpic
    In the middle of MinneSTUDEa.

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    • #3
      We are reaching a point where an increasingly large percentage of the population have never even heard of a 'Studebaker', much less have any fixed idea of what one would look like. I visit a Senior Citizens Home weekly, people in their 80s and 90s remember the bullet-nose, and C/K bodies and Golden Hawks well (although, in memory every C&K is a 'Golden Hawk' ;-) but get beyond that, few remember the Lark's, Lark-types, or Avanti's at all. When I mention I own a '62 Lark and '64 Daytona they have no idea of what either are. Not to surprising as Studebaker sales had dropped so low by the early '60s that in many communities there were no owners and none to be seen, except perhaps on Mr Ed.

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      • #4
        I settled for Studebaker back in the '60s because they were different, easy to work on, and most importantly at that time, more affordable than just about anything else is similar condition.
        But my actual favored car all these years has been the Hupmobile Skylark, and that, unless talking to dyed in wool auto enthusiast, is just about certain to elicit a blank look.

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        • #5
          I googled the skylark. What a lovely car. I brought up hundreds of images. The car is begging for hidden headlights like the cord or possibly a light in the fender like my 39 Stude.
          Diesel loving, autocrossing, Coupe express loving, Grandpa Architect.

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          • #6
            I own a 51 Henry J most people who see it don't know who made it, when I tell then Kaiser made them they still don't know what I'm talking about.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by t walgamuth View Post
              I googled the skylark. What a lovely car. I brought up hundreds of images. The car is begging for hidden headlights like the cord or possibly a light in the fender like my 39 Stude.
              There is also the very similar Graham Hollywood: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...aham-Hollywood

              Craig

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              • #8
                I have never been a fan of big, heavy cars, and my 48 Champion is the first American passenger car I have had since I sold my 56 Chev back in the 60s. I could have owned a Lark, but there was always something made in England, Italy, Germany, Sweden or Japan that I preferred, usually because of the handling and braking. Since I have been driving my Studebaker I have become aware that I just don't see other Studes out on the road. I am somewhat surprised that all these Studebaker enthusiasts, who are so proud of their totally stock cars, never seem to drive them. If you want people to be more aware of Studebakers, talking about them on this forum is not going to help.

                Spring is here, the sun is shining, and I am driving mine, running errands with it every day. It gets plenty of attention, and is clearly marked as a Studebaker on both the front and rear.

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                Trying to build a 48 Studebaker for the 21st century.
                See more of my projects at stilettoman.info

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                • #9
                  When visiting my Aunt out of state in the early 1980s, I showed her a picture of my Studebaker I owned at the time, a '60 Lark Convertible. She remarked that it didn't look like a Studebaker. Since she was born in 1921, it made sense that when she thought of Studebaker, she thought of the late 40s to early 50s cars that made such an impression on the general public at the time they were new.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by t walgamuth View Post
                    I googled the skylark. What a lovely car. I brought up hundreds of images. The car is begging for hidden headlights like the cord or possibly a light in the fender like my 39 Stude.
                    Skylark? Buick Skylark?

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                    • #11
                      It seems like everybody who doesn't know Studebakers has heard of Golden Hawks and Avantis. I could never afford either.
                      RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

                      17A-S2 - 50 Commander convertible
                      10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
                      10G-Q4 - 51 Champion business coupe
                      4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
                      5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon
                      56B-D4 - 56 Commander station wagon
                      60V-L6 - 60 Lark convertible

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                      • #12
                        Carrying the analogy one step farther, I find it sad that so few present day Studebaker owners, have little understanding of the beautiful cars that were built before the War. I have not given up hope that some of the uninitiated will will suddenly by struck by an epiphany, like I was, years ago.

                        It's always seemed a shame that two of the cars, that so many non-Studebaker people picture, are the 'bullet nose" 50-51 and the stubby Lark. I think most Studebaker people would agree that the two models are not a true characterization of sixty five years of car production.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Hallabutt View Post
                          Carrying the analogy one step farther, I find it sad that so few present day Studebaker owners, have little understanding of the beautiful cars that were built before the War. I have not given up hope that some of the uninitiated will will suddenly by struck by an epiphany, like I was, years ago.
                          Tell me about it! At the same time I decided to give non-conformity a chance and shop for a Studebaker, I had the opportunity to buy this 1940 Commander 4 door sedan at just shy of $11,000. It was in my price range and I did like it, but the sway of that GT Hawk of mine overpowered me. I do appreciate the pre-war cars still, though!

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                          Jake Robinson Kaywell: Shoo-wops and doo-wops galore to the background of some fine Studes. I'm eager and ready to go!

                          1962 GT Hawk - "Daisy-Mae" - she came dressed to kill in etherial green with a charming turquoise inside. I'm hopelessly in love!

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Milaca View Post
                            I assumed that most non-Studebaker people would think of a 1950 or 1951 bullet-nose type car when they visualize a Studebaker. Perhaps most non-Studebaker people actually visualize a Lark-type?
                            By the way Gary, did you mention to the lady that Studebaker also built pickups and trucks?
                            Yes, in the limited time that we had to talk before the start of the meeting, we did get into trucks. She (and many others that I run into) did not know that Studebaker made trucks. I mentioned that I have owned four.
                            Gary L.
                            Wappinger, NY

                            SDC member since 1968
                            Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by 8E45E View Post
                              There is also the very similar Graham Hollywood: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...aham-Hollywood

                              Craig
                              I remember them as being referred to as Hollywood Graham (I know - that defies convention). There was a body shop in Wappingers Falls, NY whose owner owned five. One was a nice car that he regularly drove, one was converted into a stock car that he raced at local tracks and the other three were probably parts cars (but cars that would be restored today) I do not know what happened to the cars. That was in the 1950s-1960s.
                              Gary L.
                              Wappinger, NY

                              SDC member since 1968
                              Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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