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Just point me in the right direction...

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  • Just point me in the right direction...

    Hey guys-

    My name is 'Snell' and I restore 65/66 Mustangs as a hobby. A friend of mine from church asked me where to start on his 1951 Studebaker, Commando, (Commander?).

    The car needs TONS of help. I have been online and looked for online Stud Warehouses but unlike the Mustang warehouses, I am having some trouble finding some sources of parts.

    Are any of these items repopped? Is there a reputable company we should look for over run of the mill, import repops?

    Pardon my naivite with these cars but I openly admit i know nothing about them. To say his body parts are rusted is an understatement...

    Any info, or sourced websites would be great appreciated.

    Lord Bless,

  • #2
    for floors and trunk floors, there are some repros made

    for the rest of the stuff (fenders, hoods, trunk lids, etc.) your best bet is to fix what you have or find some "good used" parts.

    check out for other vendors.

    here's another thread about floor pans with some other vendors:


    working on a Studebaker isn't exactly a "catalog" operation unless you are starting with an excellent rust free body. Welding is almost a required skill!


    55 Commander Starlight
    55 Commander Starlight


    • #3
      Hi Snell,You are in the right place. There are many repoped mechanical parts and a few trim pieces. Someone with more computor saavy than I will add a link to the studebaker vendors list but most everything for this car is readily available.Body parts are probably either used or NOS,a few trim pieces are repoped and all the mechanical & interior stuff is available. Good Luck,Steve


      • #4
        Tell your friend to join the Studebaker Drivers Club. The monthly magazine TURNING WHEELS will provide him with links to more information than he'll need. It's only $19.95 and can be accomplished from this web site.

        He would also benefit from contact with local members who have been in his shoes before.
        Inland Northwest Chapter, Spokane. 2 PM, 2nd Sunday except May, September and December. Millwood Town Hall, E. 9103 Frederick Avenue. Ralph Kirby, 509-891-2071

        Also, check this out

        Brad Johnson
        Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
        '33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight, '53 Commander Starlight
        "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"


        • #5
          quote:Originally posted by Helping-A-Friend
          To say his body parts are rusted is an understatement...

          I'm sure that with some rusty Mustangs, you have found that there is a point where replacing frames and sheet metal just plain isn't worth the time and cost. Same with a Studebaker.

          ANYTHING can be brought back, but sometimes it is just best to find a more rust free example to start with.

          The nicest '51 Commander Starlight Coupe is worth maybe high teens. Sedans less. Unless your buddy has a connection to the car he has that makes it worth far more to him than the car will ever bring, try to talk him into finding one that needs less rust repair to start with.

          There are far more failed and abandoned projects out there than complete ones. Rust repair is one of the usual suspects.

          Also, Alan Barth in Davenport, WA, is a Stude expert with plenty of not only knowledge, but tons of Stude parts.

          Dick Steinkamp
          Bellingham, WA

          Dick Steinkamp
          Bellingham, WA


          • #6
            Here are a couple of rules I have for doing one of these projects.
            1. While you are working on a car you will need to be going to shows and driving a collector car. Don't make your first collector car one that you will have to work on for years before you get to drive it. Get a daily driver. You'll be more apt to finish one if you have a car that keeps you connected.
            2. Keep your wife and neighbors happy by keeping a tidy and quiet work area. I just heard of a guy that spent a couple years and thousands on a car and his wife made him sell it, certainly at a huge loss. Make sure your wife is into it.
            3. Never buy any chemicals you don't know how to responsibly dispose of.
            4. Have a descent place to work where you can leave a project out and quickly restart after a day off.
            5. Do a little work every day.
            6. Take pleasure in the small victories. The first ride is fun, but so is cleaning and painting a horn. Share your small victories.
            7. Go for help. Join the club. Have a local support group.



            • #7
              Hey Guys-

              I have read all the posts and forwarded all the information to my friend. I wanted to pass on a thanks from both of us. He has copies of all the sources provided and will determine what to do.

              Based on the severity of cancer in the car, with no body sheetmetal being reproduced, I am not sure what he will do now.

              But I do appreciate all of your assistance.

              If you ever need any help with Mustang Questions I would love to repay the assistance. Feel free to contact me at support(at)classic-mustangs(dot)net.

              Lord Bless you,