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  • New Studebaker history coming to light

    Recently, with a little detective work and a lot of luck, l "found" Doug. He had a company, four blocks away from Studebaker of Canada in Hamilton, that was responsible for crating the CKD (completely knocked down) cars destined for shipment to Studebaker's partners overseas. These partners, in places like Australia, South Africa and Israel, re-assembled the cars (with the required local content) and offered them for sale in their respective markets.

    Doug's company had the contract with Studebaker from May of '64 to the end of the '65 model year. The contract for the 1966 model year had been signed, but by the time the '66's were in production, it seems that the overseas assemblers had observed the "writing on the wall" and were no longer interested in "hitching their wagon" to the Studebaker "star". To buy out Doug's '66 contract, Studebaker offered him cars as payment (Doug already owned a Wagonaire), but he didn't think that the new cars with GM engines would be worth much as time went on, so he held out for a cash settlement!

    The Hamilton Chapter SDC is very happy that Doug (just under 90 years young) is willing and able to speak at their next meeting (April 28th) about his operations and relationship with Studebaker. For posterity, we want to record his interaction with the club. Not much seems to have been published on the subject of CKD cars - except for articles by CCM-employed Australian Stude enthusiast Jim Quigley a number of years back. l believe, however, that the story has never been told from the perspective of Studebaker in North America. As well, Doug went to South Bend to "learn the ropes" before his contract began. so, he has some knowledge of CKD operations there as well.

    This is a great opportunity to learn from someone who was there - and was responsible for a facet of the operations that was specialized and is not well documented.

    l'm thinking that we should open the questioning to other members of "Studedom", not just our chapter. We can't think of ALL the good questions! So, if you are so inclined, please form a question for Doug - as SHORT as you can make it - here in the forum, on this thread, by Thursday, April 18th, just before Easter, and l will try to get an answer from Doug, posting it, l guess, on the forum.

    This is new history coming to light. l'm excited.
    Roger Hill


    60 Lark Vlll, hardtop, black/red, Power Kit, 3 spd. - "Juliette"
    61 Champ Deluxe, 6, black/red, o/d, long box. - "Jeri"
    Junior Wagon - "Junior"

    "In the end, dear undertaker,
    Ride me in a Studebaker"

  • #2
    Seems to be the makings of a future Turning Wheels article. If one has already been published would still be a great addition.
    As for a question, you may ask him how local content varies by country.
    sigpic1957 Packard Clipper Country Sedan

    "There's nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer"
    Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle
    "I have a great memory for forgetting things" Number 1 son, Lee Chan

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    • #3
      I guess some good questions might be:

      (1) Just HOW "knocked down" were they?
      Were all unboltable Body Parts like Doors, Fenders, Hood and Trunklid removed, packed and crated?

      (2) Body not installed on Frame?


      (3) Engine, Trans and Differential on Frame or not?

      Every single Nut, Bolt, Washer, Screw and Part boxed up, would be one HUGE Lego to assemble, I am sure there would be "Sub Assemblies".
      Last edited by StudeRich; 03-31-2019, 05:40 PM.
      StudeRich
      Second Generation Stude Driver,
      Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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      • #4
        I knew the foreman in charge of export vehicles in South Bend. This was some 40+ years ago. If I recall his name was "Dude" Knapp (the dude short for an ethnic name). He stated that all the CKD cars came down the assembly line and were completed cars then moved to his department where they were completely disassembled. That way they could be sure they had all the parts.
        Last edited by Studebaker Wheel; 04-02-2019, 12:15 AM.
        Richard Quinn
        Editor emeritus: Antique Studebaker Review

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        • #5
          I hope someone will make a video of Doug's talk with Q&A. I sure would like to see it!

          Did the "local content" vary by destination? How long it took to crate a car for shipping?

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          • #6
            I would suspect Stu Chapman will be there as well, and can offer some elaboration.
            I think the video idea would be great; or at least audio that could be transcripted.
            "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

            Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
            Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
            sigpic'33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight, '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée"

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            • #7
              Hi Bruce
              Yes, Stu is attending plus he and l are having coffee with Doug next week.

              And yes, we are trying to find some good audio/video equipment for our chapter meeting.
              Roger Hill


              60 Lark Vlll, hardtop, black/red, Power Kit, 3 spd. - "Juliette"
              61 Champ Deluxe, 6, black/red, o/d, long box. - "Jeri"
              Junior Wagon - "Junior"

              "In the end, dear undertaker,
              Ride me in a Studebaker"

              Comment


              • #8
                Roger, thank you for doing this project. This is a valuable resource, and recording Doug's presentation is a great idea. I hope it can be made available via YouTube or some other platform to the SDC at large.
                Mike Davis
                Regional Manager, North Carolina
                1964 Champ 8E7-122 "Stuey"

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                • #9
                  Very cool that you found him. Please ask if the Frua Larks knocked down, and if he remembers them?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by (S) View Post
                    Very cool that you found him. Please ask if the Frua Larks knocked down, and if he remembers them?
                    The convertible chassis for them was sourced from South Bend, not Hamilton. This person appears to be only involved with cars that were shipped overseas from the Hamilton plant.

                    The individual Richard Quinn mentioned in post #4 would have been responsible for shipping the chassis from South Bend to Rome as per the Production Orders.

                    Craig

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                    • #11
                      I missed what plant he was from.
                      Anyway- those were all I could think of, except it would also be interesting how many different locations cars (and trucks?) went to.

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                      • #12
                        When we had the Assembly Plant in Melbourne for Studebaker from 1960 t0 1966 a newly introduced model would be imported. A jig would be made in our workshop to accurately fit that vehicle & then became the key factor in asembling from the CKD boxed units shipped in from the U.S

                        \"QUIGLEY DOWN UNDER\"
                        MELBOURNE.

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                        • #13
                          I'm interested in know about the Studebakers that were shipped to the assembly plant in Israel, and the British Commonwealth countries besides Australia and New Zealand. Stu gave us information on 1964 convertibles that went to Uganda, France, and Belgium here: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...egistry/page14

                          Craig

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                          • #14
                            Several of us, including Stu Chapman, had coffee with Doug a few days ago and we were astounded at some of the information he gave us. For example, in the time period he had his contract with Studebaker, (May/64 to the end of the '65 model year), he sent more than 1000 crated Studes overseas. He hired two of the top guys in the CKD department in South Bend and brought them to Hamilton (they moved their families).

                            In my article in Turning Wheels about 2 years ago, l mentioned that it might be possible that the last Studebaker assembled could possibly have been one that was first sent overseas and assembled there AFTER March 17, 1966. Doug says that the crates they used and the methods of packing and preserving and waterproofing allowed him to say that the crating would be guaranteed for 2 years, as long as there was no breech of the moisture barriers. So, the last crates of 1965 models which were completed in about September of '65 had a life of AT LEAST until September of 1967! The cars were often not assembled, in some countries, until the car was first sold! There you go! This makes it next to proof-positive (but getting that proof would be difficult, l think) that the last Studebaker assembled was assembled outside of North America! There's a project!!!

                            Also, when South Bend assembly ops closed down, the company sent a few machines and some equipment to Doug's operation for his use.

                            Due to a medical event in his family, Doug asked to postpone his presentation to our chapter. He also wants to have time to make the presentation one that is up to his standards (and this tremendous guy is a member of The Order of Canada - a BIG deal - for his founding, with his wife, of the the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of Canada and the decades of work they invested in this foundation!!) So, we will have his presentation for our June meeting.

                            In the meantime, please think about the opportunity we have to ask him questions, and submit them in this thread. Thanks
                            Roger Hill


                            60 Lark Vlll, hardtop, black/red, Power Kit, 3 spd. - "Juliette"
                            61 Champ Deluxe, 6, black/red, o/d, long box. - "Jeri"
                            Junior Wagon - "Junior"

                            "In the end, dear undertaker,
                            Ride me in a Studebaker"

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by HAWK64 View Post
                              When we had the Assembly Plant in Melbourne for Studebaker from 1960 t0 1966 a newly introduced model would be imported. A jig would be made in our workshop to accurately fit that vehicle & then became the key factor in asembling from the CKD boxed units shipped in from the U.S
                              I would have expected Australian Studebakers to be sourced from Canada rather than from the U.S. Generally tariffs were more favourable between Commonwealth countries.
                              Bill Jarvis

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