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An introduction, and a request for help

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  • Dwight FitzSimons
    A couple suggestions:

    (1) Pictures are very, very helpful. This group will be very helpful, but they will insist on pix.
    (2) Take this project one step at a time


    Leave a comment:

  • DocsMachine
    started a topic An introduction, and a request for help

    An introduction, and a request for help

    Good afternoon. My name is Doc, and I recently inherited a '63 R2 Avanti.

    Family hand-me-down, my dad bought it in the late 70s, brought it up here to Alaska, and due to various reasons I may eventually write up into a story, it saw little use, and hasn't been on the road since 1982.

    Roughly a decade ago, he finally rolled it into his shop, intending to simply fix the clutch, the carb and some of the wiring. But one thing led to another, and it wound up nearly fully dismantled. New suspension was installed (one-piece axles in the posi '44 out back, plus new retrofit Ford LTD discs and some fiberglass leaves, and a bolt-in kit with modern spindles, ventilated discs and a Flaming River rack & pinion up front.

    Lots of other work was done- everything in the interior was re-covered or re-finished, the engine is about 80% rebuilt, we had the superchargers (the original and a spare) rebuilt by a fellow in Vegas, and there's boxes and boxes of other new parts. (Gauges, wiring components, aftermarket seat mounts specific to the car, etc.)

    However, it turned out he had less time than he thought, and cancer took him a couple of years back.

    The car currently sits in my shop, and I have what I believe is all the parts in somewhat jumbled, but warm storage. It's basically a family heirloom at this point, and pop's biggest regret was that he wasn't able to finish it. So it's now up to me.

    I am no stranger to automotive work. I'm a professional machinist, have a well-tooled shop, built this as a teenager, and built this, from this.

    However, I was not there when much of this car was taken apart, and mechanically, I'm a lot more familiar with early 70s GM musclecars than I am early sixties' Studebakers.

    The car has already been sitting for far, far too long, and it is finally time to start putting it back together. That's where you gentlemen (and ladies, if any) come in. Somewhere in the collected debris I inherited, is a great deal of Stude media- magazines, manuals, stuff printed from the internet, etc. I will be going through some of it, of course, but my spare time is limited, and I have a three-foot-tall stack of just Turning Wheels.

    As such, I'm hoping I can, without causing too much annoyance, ask what to most of you will probably be a bunch of simple and basic questions.

    And, please understand, pop never planned it as a 'restoration'. He wanted a comfortable, reliable, daily-driver. Hence the improved front suspension, safer rear axles, better brakes, and plans for EFI, possibly an automatic, a complete modern rewire with Weatherpak connectors and LED lights were appropriate, an aftermarket heater/defrost system, and so on.

    We're keeping the original 289 and the freshly-rebuilt McCulloch, and have no plans for any body mods. But he planned several mechanical upgrades to make it safer and more fun to drive, and I plan to follow his wishes. If "build threads" are a thing here, I'll be happy to start one, and post progress photos as I go.

    I am wide open to suggestions and advice, and will welcome any technical help you're willing to lend.

    Thank you.