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  • New member and new to Studebakers

    Just bought my first Studebaker. Pretty sure it's a 1950 Commander from the name on the dash and just one row of small holes on the front fenders. The hub caps that were stashed in the trunk are plain, though. Also, no "Commander" insignias on the sides of the front fenders. It also has the stainless rock guards on the lower rear quarters. They were also stashed in the trunk.
    One question I have is, are the bezels around the headlights and turn signals supposed to be body color matched or chromed? Are there supposed to be chrome trim rings on the wheels? These wheels had the double white stripes with the "Commander" "baby-moons" for caps.
    This car came with the automatic trans, radio and climate control.
    I have no idea if it runs yet. I bought it along with a 1951 Henry J. The PO had a stroke and his wife just wanted them gone. Wasn't really looking for a Stude, but it was a good deal and it has begun to grow on me. Lots of rust, but the main body panels are exceptionally straight. Probably because they are such heavy gauge that today's cars would crumple totally if they hit this car and wouldn't even leave a dent!
    Except for the wheelbase difference, what else sets a Land Cruiser apart from the Commander.
    My intent is to simply get it running reliable and safe and to give it a satin black rattle can paint job, plus try to brighten up all the pitted chrome. Already sandblasted the wheels, painting them now and have some nice Commander caps for them. Next will be all new brakes and lines, drop the tank and line it, take the leaf springs apart, clean, grease and re-wrap them, then move to the front end of the car.
    Will most likely be leaning on all you guys to help me find stuff for this car.
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  • #2
    Can anybody explain why my images are upside down? I tried flipping them on my laptop and replacing them, but they keep coming up upside down.

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    • #3
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      Dick Steinkamp
      Bellingham, WA

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Trikebldr View Post
        Can anybody explain why my images are upside down? I tried flipping them on my laptop and replacing them, but they keep coming up upside down.
        You must have bought one of those Australian cameras.

        Dick Steinkamp
        Bellingham, WA

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        • #5
          Thanks for the correction. Still wondering how to prevent it later. Pics taken with my android cell.

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          • #6
            Early production 1950's got painted headlight bezels and later ones were chromed. Chrome wheel trim rings would have been an option.
            sigpic1966 Daytona (The First One)
            1950 Champion Convertible
            1950 Champion 4Dr
            1955 President 2 Dr Hardtop
            1957 Thunderbird

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            • #7
              Originally posted by thunderations View Post
              Early production 1950's got painted headlight bezels and later ones were chromed. Chrome wheel trim rings would have been an option.
              Thanks for the info, Thunder!
              I see some Commanders have the center caps with plain edges, and some have the "Studebaker-Commander" embossed around the edge. Are the plain ones an aftermarket item, or are the embossed ones an option?

              Can anybody advise me how to deal with all the pitting in the chromed parts? Almost all of it is badly pitted, even the dash pieces. Can it be stripped, repaired and re-chromed? Otherwise, I just plan to use that new two-step chrome paint after filling and sanding all of the pieces.

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              • #8
                First things first....join The Studebaker Drivers Club and your nearest chapter.....best source for answering all your questions.....
                Lou Van Anne
                62 Champ
                64 R2 GT Hawk
                79 Avanti II

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                • #9
                  And, purchase a reproduction of the original shop manual for your car. It will be invaluable to you in the days ahead. Available inexpensively from any number of Stude parts vendors (and on eBay, I'm sure). Good luck with your very nice project Stude. John

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                  • #10
                    Welcome! Cool car. I have a 51 Commander. I really like the bullet nose models. Like others have said, get a shop manual and the chassis and body parts books. They are extremely helpful. Join the SDC and come here for your questions.
                    1962 Champ

                    51 Commander 4 door

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                    • #11
                      John, thanks! Yes, I already have the shop manual, chassis parts manual, and body parts manual. Have even collected several paint chip sheets from many makers for this car. It came with the original owners manual. Also collected several brochures and ads to try to identify exactly what model it is. The body-colored headlight bezels are what threw me

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                      • #12
                        The "OTHER" thing you need to find out is what Trim Level this is from the body Tag on the Right side of the Firewall under the Hood.
                        You match that to the list of Models in the Front of the Chassis Parts Catalog or Body Parts Catalog to find the Model Code and Model Name.

                        Just looking at your Car, I would say it is likely a W3 Deluxe 4 Door Sedan, the lowest Trim Level for a Commander.
                        To understand the Parts Books you need to know that a 1950 Commander & Land Cruiser are Year Model Code 17A, then the Body Code W3 (Standard Wheelbase 4 Door Sedan) should identify your Car.

                        A Land Cruiser had a Top of the line, Luxury Interior with longer legroom in the rear seat.
                        There would be Full Carpeting front and Rear, carpeted foot rests, arm rests, a fold down rear Arm Rest, a Robe Rail, Hand Grip assists straps, a one piece Windshield, 4 Dome light door switches, opening rear vent windows etc. etc.
                        StudeRich
                        Second Generation Stude Driver,
                        Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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                        • #13
                          Thx Dick, first I've heard if Aussie cameras, lol.
                          John Clements
                          Christchurch, New Zealand

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                          • #14
                            The trim level appears to be the Deluxe, not the Regal Deluxe. There is no stainless trim around the front and back windows. You can obtain a reproduction of the correct Commander Hood mascot from Studebaker International. Some other vendors may have them as well. You can see from my avatar that I "owned" a 1950 Commander Regal Deluxe 4-door Sedan that was in fine shape. I surely do wish I had not sold it. I really miss that car. It was a fun and comfortable ride.
                            Ed Sallia
                            Dundee, OR

                            Sol Lucet Omnibus

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by avantilover View Post
                              Thx Dick, first I've heard if Aussie cameras, lol.
                              John,
                              How do you deal with all the upside down pictures that are posted by those of us north of the equator?
                              Dick Steinkamp
                              Bellingham, WA

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