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  • Daytona delusions

    It's been several years since I had the privilege of owning and driving a wonderful '60 Lark. it was my first, and thus far, only Stude. After foolishly selling it, I find myself more and more wanting the Stude experience again. But unlike many of you, I haven't put in time and effort under hoods and on creepers in my life. I'm a darn good nurse, just not a wrench man, and at my age (59) unlikely to change that.

    That, of course, makes the prospect of owning a Stude without racing to the poorhouse a dubious enterprise. But the itch wants scratching. Is it crazy to figure my local shop (which admirably kept my '60 in shape), would be able to help me keep an SBC powered Daytona going?

    https://duluth.craigslist.org/cto/d/...745639486.html

    I've heard countless times, that rodded cars make for difficult maintenance. Then again, McKinnon small blocks were quite a smooth fit for '65-66 Lark types. If I were to get this Daytona, I'd ditch the side pipes and put the bumpers back on, among other things. While conceding that an SBC drivetrain detracts from the full Stude experience, I've been telling myself the familiarity of the drive train might actually aid my guys at the shop. Am I kidding myself? The mike is yours...

  • #2
    Pretty simple really.
    Seems like you might ask...the shop that you trusted your original Studebaker too..!

    Mike

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    • #3


      Hmm, kinda wish I'd put a little more focus into that

      Comment


      • #4
        Looks like a nice car. I would also get rid of the side pipes. I would not have a problem with the drive train that is in it.

        James
        sigpic

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        • #5
          1962 Champ

          51 Commander 4 door

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by drpreposterous;1139506[URL="https://duluth.craigslist.org/cto/d/glidden-1962-studebaker-lark-daytona/6745639486.html"
            ...https://duluth.craigslist.org/cto/d/glidden-1962-studebaker-lark-daytona/6745639486.html[/URL]

            I've heard countless times, that rodded cars make for difficult maintenance. Then again, McKinnon small blocks were quite a smooth fit for '65-66 Lark types. If I were to get this Daytona, I'd ditch the side pipes and put the bumpers back on, among other things. While conceding that an SBC drivetrain detracts from the full Stude experience, I've been telling myself the familiarity of the drive train might actually aid my guys at the shop. Am I kidding myself? The mike is yours...
            Today, if you go buy a brand new vehicle, you will find that it is an assembly of parts sourced from all kinds of various locations and businesses. The main difference in these new cars and a rodded (custom) car is the documentation and purposeful engineering of the components for compatibility. So, in my opinion, on a modified/rodded car, the key is to have it well documented and the quality of how it was put together.

            To address your title "delusions"...that will depend on you. How realistic your expectations match up to the reality of the car? In real life, just as in a pleasant dream, you might start out with a great happy experience, only to find a nightmare awaiting over the next hill. For someone with little experience or who simply don't like tinkering with tools, views mechanical quandaries as misery instead of a challenge, and dependent upon a mechanic for support...owning one of these cars can turn nightmare at any moment. Components break, mechanics become sick, and garages change personnel and others close up shop. The more you are willing to do yourself, the less you are depending on someone else. Only you can decide how much you are willing to put up with to enjoy one of these relics of our past, regardless of how it is put together today. As long as you recognize this reality and adjust your expectations accordingly...the better off you will be. So go for it and share the experience here.
            John Clary
            Greer, SC

            SDC member since 1975

            Comment


            • #7
              Eyeballs and your butt in the seat is the only way you'll know. The mods look like they were done by someone that took the time to make them look good, a good sign. As with any car this age it needs to be driven to see if it meets your expectations. Nothing like 0-70 mph at a reasonable pace to find clunks and vibrations. Then cruise for some miles and watch the instruments. I doubt overheating will be an issue this time of year in the Duluth area but you need to see temp, oil pressure etc and then how it stops. You could ask if someone in the area can test it but you still need to know how it fits you. The good news is if you don't like the seats it's pretty easy to find a set from a local yard that will fit. With the size of most cars today, their seats will generally fit well in older cars and give much better comfort.

              Mike is correct about asking your old shop but if they can fix an SBC, I can't imagine they can't in your neck of the woods or they wouldn't probably still be in business.

              Bob
              Last edited by sweetolbob; 12-22-2018, 05:32 AM.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by sweetolbob View Post
                Eyeballs and your butt in the seat is the only way you'll know. The mods look like they were done by someone that took the time to make them look good, a good sign. As with any car this age it needs to be driven to see if it meets your expectations. Nothing like 0-70 mph at a reasonable pace to find clunks and vibrations. Then cruise for some miles and watch the instruments. I doubt overheating will be an issue this time of year in the Duluth area but you need to see temp, oil pressure etc and then how it stops. You could ask if someone in the area can test it but you still need to know how it fits you. The good news is if you don't like the seats it's pretty easy to find a set from a local yard that will fit. With the size of most cars today, their seats will generally fit well in older cars and give much better comfort.

                Mike is correct about asking your old shop but if they can fix an SBC, I can't imagine they can't in your neck of the woods or they wouldn't probably still be in business.

                Bob
                Yup...what Bob says.... and the engine of choice is really six of one, half a dozen of the other. The chance of a Stude engine/trans breaking is no better or worse than an a Chubby combo. What really matters is the person who is going to maintain and work on your car needs to be a competent mechanic that has a solid understanding of how to trouble shoot and repair old-school cars as you know that any half-century old car will need to be worked on sooner or later. Once you find, or if you still have that mechanic, have them look at the car you want to purchase and get their blessing. If they figure the car is a solid runner then buy it, have them service it at least once a year, and enjoy it. cheers, junior
                sigpic
                1954 C5 Hamilton car.

                Comment


                • #9
                  That looks like a nice ride, but like Bob said, you will have to look it over and decide. If the builder did it right you will have a fun car. One of our chapter members has a similarly equipped car that he drives all over.
                  BTW I agree about the side pipes.
                  "In the heart of Arkansas."
                  Searcy, Arkansas
                  1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.
                  1952 2R pickup

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    The car looks okay, but I doubt that it would fulfill your desire to bring back your previos Studebaker experience.

                    When checking with your shop, it is more important to check with them about things that are different from newer cars, like the king pin front suspension, rather than the SBC engine.

                    I am a little concerned with the brake conversion including moving the master cylinder from the frame to the firewall. Check out that the firewall was properly reinforced to handle this, etc.

                    Personally, for your desire, I would suggest a V8, AT, 1959-1961 Lark in reasonably good condition. They are out there. In fact, there is one currently for sale in another thread here (1961).
                    Gary L.
                    Wappinger, NY

                    SDC member since 1968
                    Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Gary it is a 62 lark daytona no master under the car.
                      Candbstudebakers
                      Castro Valley,
                      California


                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by candbstudebakers View Post
                        Gary it is a 62 lark daytona no master under the car.
                        Of course you are correct, Bob. I looked at what is now in the car, not stock, and thought of the 1960 that he originally discussed. I guess that my fingers were working faster than my brain.
                        Gary L.
                        Wappinger, NY

                        SDC member since 1968
                        Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by drpreposterous View Post
                          It's been several years since I had the privilege of owning and driving a wonderful '60 Lark. it was my first, and thus far, only Stude. After foolishly selling it, I find myself more and more wanting the Stude experience again. But unlike many of you, I haven't put in time and effort under hoods and on creepers in my life. I'm a darn good nurse, just not a wrench man, and at my age (59) unlikely to change that.

                          That, of course, makes the prospect of owning a Stude without racing to the poorhouse a dubious enterprise. But the itch wants scratching. Is it crazy to figure my local shop (which admirably kept my '60 in shape), would be able to help me keep an SBC powered Daytona going?

                          https://duluth.craigslist.org/cto/d/...745639486.html

                          I've heard countless times, that rodded cars make for difficult maintenance. Then again, McKinnon small blocks were quite a smooth fit for '65-66 Lark types. If I were to get this Daytona, I'd ditch the side pipes and put the bumpers back on, among other things. While conceding that an SBC drivetrain detracts from the full Stude experience, I've been telling myself the familiarity of the drive train might actually aid my guys at the shop. Am I kidding myself? The mike is yours...
                          It looks like a nice car. There are a few details you should pay attention to. The engine installation looks sanitary. A TH 350 interferes with the original transmission crossmember. Many guys just remove it. The crossmember also bolts to the base of the body "A" pillar. It is necessary to maintaining door alignment. It needs to be in place and modified to work with the trans. (see photos) The power brake hose is plumbed to the carburetor base. It should come off a fitting screwed into the back of the intake. A PCV should be plumbed from the left valve cover to the base of the carburetor.
                          Attached Files
                          james r pepper

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Hear is the instructions that go with the crossmember photos.
                            Tip of the Month
                            Engine Swap Crossmember
                            Installing a Smallblock Chevrolet engine in a Lark type chassis is a popular swap. Studebaker made it easy by engineering bolt in mounting stands used in 65/66. The 65/66 transmission crossmember easily can be made to accommodate any matching GM transmission. An interference problem occurs with the bellhousing area crossmember when using a GM transmission. The exhaust hump runs into the transmission case preventing installation. Many people just leave it off. That is a problem because that crossmember also doubles as the mount for the base of the door pillar. Without it you will never maintain proper door adjustment. It is a mandatory structural component of the car. I have seen vehicles where the builder cut out the center section leaving the ends to bolt the pillar base to. That is better than none at all but still not ridged enough. Neighbor and SDC member Butch Pearson’s 60 Lark with a 350/350 was such a car with no crossmember at all. He located an NOS crossmember and I went to work. I had a front frame section saved from a junk Lark. I first bolted the crossmember to the frame and then welded a piece of light angle iron on top of the rails in order to maintain alignment and width. I then cut the center of the crossmember out flush with the inside of the frame rail with a Sawzall. I fabricated a dropped center section using
                            1” X 3” X 1/8” rectangular tubing and ¼” thick end plates. This was welded in place on three sides then removed to finish weld the top area. Installed in Butch’s car the door pillar will have the proper support, the turbo 350 transmission clears, and the exhaust is routed above the dropped section. This took about $20.00 worth of steel and a few hours of work. It is worth the effort. The doors will open and close properly and the car will be much tighter driving down the road. See the photos.
                            james r pepper

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                            • #15
                              JP! Wow!
                              Thoughtful, incisive replies...
                              Thanks, and Happy Holidays, Studisans!

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