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'53 "Starlighter" at Russo and Steele Auction

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  • 00RACER
    replied
    After seeing the other comments, I had to post another to clear the air.
    I think this is a very nicely done car, and looks gorgeous. I just personally am not a Chevy fan, and have to point out "TO EACH HIS OWN". Maybe some people do not like certain things on my cars, but hopefully respect this is what I wanted.
    Again, very nice car and what "HE" wanted!

    Leave a comment:


  • studegary
    replied
    Originally posted by BeeJay View Post
    Don't mean to disparage those who chose to be purists. I bought my first '53 Commander in '55. Drove it everywhere. But then parts were available with ease. If you are on the road today and lose a fuel pump, where do you get one? Dist cap? Even a rotor? All things mechanical have the ability to fail, usually at the most inconvenient times. Parts for my SBC can even be found at the drug store. Yes, there used to be a CVS in my neighborhood that had an auto parts dept at the rear of the store!
    Bob
    I have noted your comments and now decided to reply. I have owned both stock and modified Studebakers. Aren't you the guy that was stranded far from home in the not too distant past when one of the non-Studebaker parts of your car failed (front suspension IIRC)?

    Leave a comment:


  • PackardV8
    replied
    We're getting way off-topic from this particular car at auction, but that's never stopped us before.

    Don't mean to disparage those who chose to be purists. I bought my first '53 Commander in '55. Drove it everywhere. But then parts were available with ease. If you are on the road today and lose a fuel pump, where do you get one? Dist cap? Even a rotor? All things mechanical have the ability to fail, usually at the most inconvenient times. Parts for my SBC can even be found at the drug store. Yes, there used to be a CVS in my neighborhood that had an auto parts dept at the rear of the store!
    I'm far from a purist. At present, I own three customs and no stock Studes, so I can see both sides. Interestingly, most of the SBC conversions cite reliability and parts availability as the excuse. Guess I've just been incredibly fortunate, but in fifty years of driving stock Studes, many of them as daily drivers, I've never been stranded, never had one come home on the hook. The Studebaker engines and running gear are so dirt-simple, the components likely to fail usually give a competent mechanic plenty of warning of weakened condition in time to replace them before they fail. Replacement of parts as they wore, an annual tune-up and oil change and they just kept getting me there and back. Those Studes I've had to rescue for others usually were long overdue for maintenance and often the owner would admit he knew it needed work but "don't drive it that much any more and just hadn't gotten around to it yet." Bottom line, a Stude maintained by the Shop Manual is one of the most mechanically reliable vehicles ever built. Your results may vary.

    Again, my experience, and it incorporates owning, working on or building at least a hundred Studes and a like number street rods and customs, is the combination of many new, but unlike OEM parts and aftermarket parts are more likely to give problems than is a well-maintained stock Stude. I own one custom Avanti and am building a custom Hawk and a C-cab at present and despite my best efforts and experience, all the new bells and whistles will take weeks of road-testing, debugging and probably some expensive redesign or replacements before they are anything like as reliable as the original stock car/truck was. Reliability isn't why I changed from stock Stude - wanting to try some new ideas, get lots more performance and just wanting to play with Packard V8s was why I changed. Your results may vary.

    jack vines

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  • 4961Studebaker
    replied
    Originally posted by showbizkid View Post
    Reminds me of Dick Steinkamp's old Starliner.
    Thought the same thing when I saw the photo, great cars.

    Now I need to go borrow some plans and build a new man cave so I can house one of these.

    Leave a comment:


  • BeeJay
    replied
    Don't mean to disparage those who chose to be purists. I bought my first '53 Commander in '55. Drove it everywhere. But then parts were available with ease. If you are on the road today and lose a fuel pump, where do you get one? Dist cap? Even a rotor? All things mechanical have the ability to fail, usually at the most inconvenient times. Parts for my SBC can even be found at the drug store. Yes, there used to be a CVS in my neighborhood that had an auto parts dept at the rear of the store!
    Bob

    Leave a comment:


  • Pat Dilling
    replied
    Beautiful car, I am a least a little curious why he chose to flare the fender wells when he changed the front suspension and rear axle and could have easily adjusted the track width. In any case I will be very curious to know what it goes for. Always good to have a value mark set. As for changing the motor, Stude motors are great but if you want 400+ hp that is reliable, drivable, guaranteed and reasonably priced it's hard to beat a Chevy crate motor. I opted for the late model EFI aluminum motor for my 53 and love it. The Conestoga will have a Stude 289 though.

    Pat

    Leave a comment:


  • woodysrods
    replied
    Originally posted by BeeJay View Post
    Yeah, I "ruined" mine with a Chevy engine too. Only ended up with a still beautiful car that I can drive long distances without worrying about carrying a trunkful of spare parts. Anyone wants a running when pulled 232 Stude engine, will be more than happy to sell them one.
    Bob
    Well said Bob. I "ruined" mine too. With a SB Chev, 700R4, and an 8" rear. As a matter of fact I used a complete Chev, S10 chassis under my 46 M Series. I have driven it over 60,000 miles over the past 8 years absolutely trouble free. I don't carry as much as a screwdriver for tools.Click image for larger version

Name:	Yakima 2009 003.jpg
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ID:	1666516 And I don't have BCAA, a cell phone, or a spare tire.
    I drive it hard, fast, and lots, without worry as I am confident in my build Click image for larger version

Name:	Yakima 2009 002.jpg
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ID:	1666515and just don't give it a second thought when I leave the end of the driveway for another adventure as we call it!
    I am in the process of "ruining" another one (my 56 Power Hawk) with a ZZ4, 6 spd, and 9" ford.
    See you somewhere down the road between here and Florida! Give me a waive as I go by!
    Good Roads
    Brian

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  • 52-fan
    replied
    Gorgeous car! I love black 53 coupes regardless of engine choice. The comment about carrying a trunk full of parts if Studebaker powered doesn't hold up though.

    Leave a comment:


  • BeeJay
    replied
    Yeah, I "ruined" mine with a Chevy engine too. Only ended up with a still beautiful car that I can drive long distances without worrying about carrying a trunkful of spare parts. Anyone wants a running when pulled 232 Stude engine, will be more than happy to sell them one.
    Bob

    Leave a comment:


  • 00RACER
    replied
    It is a shame it is ruined with a GM engine

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  • sweetolbob
    replied
    Originally posted by PackardV8 View Post
    Cool and unique for you and me, Bob and maybe a very few others. Survey says not so much for most auction buyers. An equal investment in building a '69 Camaro Z28 clone, a '69 Shelby Mustang clone, or a '69 Hemi Road Runner clone would bring twice the return, all day every auction.

    jack vines
    Jack

    My brain says you are probably correct but my heart wants to see a gorgeous 53 go for big money like the aforementioned Brand X's

    Here's hoping.

    Bob

    Leave a comment:


  • PackardV8
    replied
    The one thing about showing up with a 53 Studebaker among all the other Camaros and Mustangs equally modified is the cool and unique factor. Not many like that at those shows.
    Cool and unique for you and me, Bob and maybe a very few others. Survey says not so much for most auction buyers. An equal investment in building a '69 Camaro Z28 clone, a '69 Shelby Mustang clone, or a '69 Hemi Road Runner clone would bring twice the return, all day every auction.

    jack vines

    Leave a comment:


  • sweetolbob
    replied
    I don't doubt that it will go for less than the construction cost but the final value compared to a restored 53C of the same quality will be interesting. Cars at B&J and Mecum that have been modified as high powered fast cornering road burners (Whatever they are currently called) have been drawing large bucks.

    The one thing about showing up with a 53 Studebaker among all the other Camaros and Mustangs equally modified is the cool and unique factor. Not many like that at those shows.

    It will be fun to watch.

    Bob

    Leave a comment:


  • PackardV8
    replied
    Beautiful build which will probably go for less than half what it cost. Here's what will keep the bids lower - It's not a hardtop, not a 100-point restoration, not an over-the-top-big-name-built-blingstermobile and it is a belly button. On the plus side, it is nicely understated, it is the type street custom which probably drives out wonderfully, gets decent fuel economy and would get a couple to a long distance show in comfort. But good doesn't grab the gonads of those who are looking to one-up their buds at the Good Guys Show.

    And who writes the copy for R&S? Yet another example of how not to sell a really nice car.

    jack vines

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  • showbizkid
    replied
    Reminds me of Dick Steinkamp's old Starliner.

    Leave a comment:

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