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  • Historical Forced-Induction Flatheads

    I am aware there are some contemporary forced induction projects (e.g., the salt2salt crew, the Turbostude, and Mr. Cathcart's project), but I am curious about vintage forced induction setups. Were there, back in the day, aftermarket companies that produced equipment intended specifically for Studebaker flatheads? Or were all such setups one-offs from hard-working, enterprising gearheads, as they are today?

    I am quite infatuated with flatheads (especially the Champion), and especially forced-induction examples of such. And while I believe the practicality of having such an engine in my daily driver is dubious, I can't help but fantasize...

  • #2
    Hi, Dutch,

    In (nearly) fifty years of SDC membership and of subscribing to most of the gearhead magazines, I have never seen or heard of a commercially produced kit to force-feed a Champion. Not enough people that kind of money want start trying to make horsepower with the worst possible engine.

    1. 169/185 cubic inches is tiny in a big car.
    2. Long stroke makes for high piston speeds
    3. Small bore makes for poor breathing
    4. Valve-in-block makes for even worse breathing.

    Bottom line, nothing can be done to force-feed the Champ which wouldn't produce two-three time the horsepower increase on a Stude V8 for the same cost.

    Yes, I know a Champ coupe ran 135 at Bonneville last year, but many cars spending the same money on larger engines ran over 200 MPH.

    As an interesting exercise in masochism, try it. Go for the pain! (This is from a guy spending lots of time, money and effort trying to make Packard V8s run with the belly-button motors.)

    thnx, jv.

    PackardV8
    PackardV8

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi, Dutch,

      In (nearly) fifty years of SDC membership and of subscribing to most of the gearhead magazines, I have never seen or heard of a commercially produced kit to force-feed a Champion. Not enough people that kind of money want start trying to make horsepower with the worst possible engine.

      1. 169/185 cubic inches is tiny in a big car.
      2. Long stroke makes for high piston speeds
      3. Small bore makes for poor breathing
      4. Valve-in-block makes for even worse breathing.

      Bottom line, nothing can be done to force-feed the Champ which wouldn't produce two-three time the horsepower increase on a Stude V8 for the same cost.

      Yes, I know a Champ coupe ran 135 at Bonneville last year, but many cars spending the same money on larger engines ran over 200 MPH.

      As an interesting exercise in masochism, try it. Go for the pain! (This is from a guy spending lots of time, money and effort trying to make Packard V8s run with the belly-button motors.)

      thnx, jv.

      PackardV8
      PackardV8

      Comment


      • #4
        In the '40's and '50's, McCullough sold superchargers for a wide variety of cars. This was a centrifical unit that was on top of the engine. These are extremely rare. There are more than one flathead Ford with this unit, and they were available for other engines.

        ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Tom - Valrico, FL

        1964 Studebaker Daytona - 289 4V, 4-Speed (Cost To Date: $1903.98)

        Tom - Bradenton, FL

        1964 Studebaker Daytona - 289 4V, 4-Speed (Cost To Date: $2514.10)
        1964 Studebaker Commander - 170 1V, 3-Speed w/OD

        Comment


        • #5
          In the '40's and '50's, McCullough sold superchargers for a wide variety of cars. This was a centrifical unit that was on top of the engine. These are extremely rare. There are more than one flathead Ford with this unit, and they were available for other engines.

          ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
          Tom - Valrico, FL

          1964 Studebaker Daytona - 289 4V, 4-Speed (Cost To Date: $1903.98)

          Tom - Bradenton, FL

          1964 Studebaker Daytona - 289 4V, 4-Speed (Cost To Date: $2514.10)
          1964 Studebaker Commander - 170 1V, 3-Speed w/OD

          Comment


          • #6
            quote:Originally posted by PackardV8

            Hi, Dutch,

            In fifty years of SDC membership and of subscribing to most of the gearhead magazines, I have never seen or heard of a commercially produced kit to force-feed a Champion. Not enough people that kind of money want start trying to make horsepower with the worst possible engine.


            thnx, jv.

            PackardV8
            I agree with your comments about supercharging the flathead six. I just don't see how you could have been an SDC member more than five years before there was an SDC (I guess that you meant 50 years of magazines, including some number of those years as a member of SDC.).

            Gary L.
            Wappinger, NY

            SDC member since 1968
            Studebaker enthusiast much longer
            Gary L.
            Wappinger, NY

            SDC member since 1968
            Studebaker enthusiast much longer

            Comment


            • #7
              quote:Originally posted by PackardV8

              Hi, Dutch,

              In fifty years of SDC membership and of subscribing to most of the gearhead magazines, I have never seen or heard of a commercially produced kit to force-feed a Champion. Not enough people that kind of money want start trying to make horsepower with the worst possible engine.


              thnx, jv.

              PackardV8
              I agree with your comments about supercharging the flathead six. I just don't see how you could have been an SDC member more than five years before there was an SDC (I guess that you meant 50 years of magazines, including some number of those years as a member of SDC.).

              Gary L.
              Wappinger, NY

              SDC member since 1968
              Studebaker enthusiast much longer
              Gary L.
              Wappinger, NY

              SDC member since 1968
              Studebaker enthusiast much longer

              Comment


              • #8
                quote:Originally posted by PackardV8
                In fifty years of SDC membership and of subscribing to most of the gearhead magazines, I have never seen or heard of a commercially produced kit to force-feed a Champion. Not enough people that kind of money want start trying to make horsepower with the worst possible engine.

                1. 169/185 cubic inches is tiny in a big car.
                2. Long stroke makes for high piston speeds
                3. Small bore makes for poor breathing
                4. Valve-in-block makes for even worse breathing.

                Bottom line, nothing can be done to force-feed the Champ which wouldn't produce two-ghree time the horsepower increase on a Stude V8 for the same cost.
                You have confirmed what I was pretty sure I knew already. Sad. Anyway, I wasn't asking because I wanted to try this out on my own engine; my interest is much more academic.

                I love pre-'60s vintage cars, and especially performance flathead-powered ones. And because I lust after fire-breathing vintage power plants, it follows that I should be interested in forced induction applications. Though saying this here might get me chased out of town by an angry, pitchfork-wielding mob...someday I will own a tricked out Merc with a big ol' flathead that's so shiny and pretty, you'll need sunglasses just to look under the hood. Of course, the little Champ in my 2R10 panel truck will be all dressed up and just as pretty, too.

                quote:As an interesting exercise in masochism, try it. Go for the pain!
                Oh god no. I am waaaaaay too poor for these fantasies to become anything more. Perhaps once I finish grad school, and am making the six-figure salary....

                quoteThis is from a guy spending lots of time, money and effort trying to make Packard V8s run with the belly-button motors.)
                Ooooh! Vintage AND obscure! Blog/pics?

                Comment


                • #9
                  quote:Originally posted by PackardV8
                  In fifty years of SDC membership and of subscribing to most of the gearhead magazines, I have never seen or heard of a commercially produced kit to force-feed a Champion. Not enough people that kind of money want start trying to make horsepower with the worst possible engine.

                  1. 169/185 cubic inches is tiny in a big car.
                  2. Long stroke makes for high piston speeds
                  3. Small bore makes for poor breathing
                  4. Valve-in-block makes for even worse breathing.

                  Bottom line, nothing can be done to force-feed the Champ which wouldn't produce two-ghree time the horsepower increase on a Stude V8 for the same cost.
                  You have confirmed what I was pretty sure I knew already. Sad. Anyway, I wasn't asking because I wanted to try this out on my own engine; my interest is much more academic.

                  I love pre-'60s vintage cars, and especially performance flathead-powered ones. And because I lust after fire-breathing vintage power plants, it follows that I should be interested in forced induction applications. Though saying this here might get me chased out of town by an angry, pitchfork-wielding mob...someday I will own a tricked out Merc with a big ol' flathead that's so shiny and pretty, you'll need sunglasses just to look under the hood. Of course, the little Champ in my 2R10 panel truck will be all dressed up and just as pretty, too.

                  quote:As an interesting exercise in masochism, try it. Go for the pain!
                  Oh god no. I am waaaaaay too poor for these fantasies to become anything more. Perhaps once I finish grad school, and am making the six-figure salary....

                  quoteThis is from a guy spending lots of time, money and effort trying to make Packard V8s run with the belly-button motors.)
                  Ooooh! Vintage AND obscure! Blog/pics?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Old McCulloch superchargers from the '30's & '40's.

                    http://www.vs57.com/the%2030s%20pinups.htm

                    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                    Tom - Valrico, FL

                    1964 Studebaker Daytona - 289 4V, 4-Speed (Cost To Date: $1903.98)

                    Tom - Bradenton, FL

                    1964 Studebaker Daytona - 289 4V, 4-Speed (Cost To Date: $2514.10)
                    1964 Studebaker Commander - 170 1V, 3-Speed w/OD

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Old McCulloch superchargers from the '30's & '40's.

                      http://www.vs57.com/the%2030s%20pinups.htm

                      ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                      Tom - Valrico, FL

                      1964 Studebaker Daytona - 289 4V, 4-Speed (Cost To Date: $1903.98)

                      Tom - Bradenton, FL

                      1964 Studebaker Daytona - 289 4V, 4-Speed (Cost To Date: $2514.10)
                      1964 Studebaker Commander - 170 1V, 3-Speed w/OD

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I am not aware that there ever was a commercially available forced induction for the Stude 6. Weirdly enough, (I say weird because no one remembers turbo kits this old) there was an early turbo setup available for the Chevy 6. From 1949 to 1952 the Besasie-Chevrolet draw through turbocharger promised 155 hp at 6 lbs boost.

                        This pic looks old, but is actually more recent: http://img158.imageshack.us/img158/3921/turbo6fs0.jpg I really dig the blow off valve built into the carb hat.

                        The early McCulloch centrifugal supercharger, like on the Ford flathead V8 http://www.vs57.com/index30s.htm or the Kaiser http://www.vs57.com/ (click on Supercharged Kaisers on the left side).

                        Thomas

                        Long time hot rodder
                        Packrat junk collector
                        '63 Avanti R2 4 speed

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I am not aware that there ever was a commercially available forced induction for the Stude 6. Weirdly enough, (I say weird because no one remembers turbo kits this old) there was an early turbo setup available for the Chevy 6. From 1949 to 1952 the Besasie-Chevrolet draw through turbocharger promised 155 hp at 6 lbs boost.

                          This pic looks old, but is actually more recent: http://img158.imageshack.us/img158/3921/turbo6fs0.jpg I really dig the blow off valve built into the carb hat.

                          The early McCulloch centrifugal supercharger, like on the Ford flathead V8 http://www.vs57.com/index30s.htm or the Kaiser http://www.vs57.com/ (click on Supercharged Kaisers on the left side).

                          Thomas

                          Long time hot rodder
                          Packrat junk collector
                          '63 Avanti R2 4 speed

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Dutch, I think this will interest you, considering the thread you had started with "motor bling" (yes, I changed the word to bling).

                            Here's my 185 cu. in. Champion motor, orginally from a 1957 C-cab truck, which has STILL yet to be installed in my 1955 truck, to replace the tired Champion that sits in there now (I bet everyone is tired of waiting for me to do this, but it DOES look good sitting on my garage floor). It was done pretty much in the way Bill Cathcart does one when he gives it the full internal and external treatment. For what he does, you can see www.cathcartsstudebaker.com

                            Here's my engine:


                            [img=left]http://rocketdillo.com/studebaker/misc/images/Avacar-hcsdc.gif[/img=left]DilloCrafter

                            1955 1/2 Ton Pickup
                            The Red-Headed Amazon
                            Deep in the heart of Texas

                            Paul Simpson
                            "DilloCrafter"

                            1955 1/2 Ton Pickup
                            The Red-Headed Amazon
                            Deep in the heart of Texas

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Dutch, I think this will interest you, considering the thread you had started with "motor bling" (yes, I changed the word to bling).

                              Here's my 185 cu. in. Champion motor, orginally from a 1957 C-cab truck, which has STILL yet to be installed in my 1955 truck, to replace the tired Champion that sits in there now (I bet everyone is tired of waiting for me to do this, but it DOES look good sitting on my garage floor). It was done pretty much in the way Bill Cathcart does one when he gives it the full internal and external treatment. For what he does, you can see www.cathcartsstudebaker.com

                              Here's my engine:


                              [img=left]http://rocketdillo.com/studebaker/misc/images/Avacar-hcsdc.gif[/img=left]DilloCrafter

                              1955 1/2 Ton Pickup
                              The Red-Headed Amazon
                              Deep in the heart of Texas

                              Paul Simpson
                              "DilloCrafter"

                              1955 1/2 Ton Pickup
                              The Red-Headed Amazon
                              Deep in the heart of Texas

                              Comment

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