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How Much Should You Do to Make a Studebaker Presentable?

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  • jnfweber
    replied
    Originally posted by Stoody56 View Post
    Hi Jack in Montana, I really enjoyed reading all the comments raised by your post and agree with those who said make it safe, enjoy driving it and everything else is up to your budget, your desires and your time. I am in a similar position to you, in that my 56 President is very scruffy and has been like it for the 3 years I've owned it and I have a tight budget. I've done brake cylinders, linings, hoses, steering joints to make it safe and the rest has been the sheer enjoyment of playing and finding so many people who adore it. As you can imagine it is a huge rarity over here in England and it's condition is almost irrelevant compared to the "wow factor" and it's fascinating history (see my post" How many 56 Presidents are there out there", if you're interested). Unfortunately the weather here in south west England dictates whether I go out or not. Braving the rain with exposed rust and non existent window seals would soon result in overall deterioration and my desire is to preserve this wonderful piece of motoring history. So it's sunny days only and an eventual plan to repaint it in my time and by hand using coach paint.
    Forgive my English ignorance of things US, but what is Maaco? - is it a paint I can get over here? Incidentally, if you are disposing of those gauges, they look like they would fit my 56 - my bezels are peeling and fuel doesn't work. How much would you want?
    I'm going to try to add a picture of my Prez acting as wedding car for friends. It certainly caused quite a stir and was well photographed, flying the flag for Studebaker and getting the name out there. Apologies if I can't get the photo over as I'm new to this.
    Thanks for the great photo of your President Classic. I prefer the looks of the '56 to the '57 as it is more Studebaker [unique] than the '57, which looks a lot like the '57 General Motors models, Pontiac and Buick. I know rust is a problem in your area and our damp midwest and northeast states, or wherever they salt the roads in winter. I have already had a PM (personal mail) regarding possible sale of the 57 Golden Hawk dash, and I will sell it intact to a deserving GH owner IF I can find suitable Stewart-Warner type gauges of the correct size for a 56-57 sedan. If I can find a better '56, I will sell my '57. MAACO maaco.com is a budget paint and body franchise in the U.S. and there is one in Montana. I had my M-5 done in California, and it is not the correct Studebaker Forest Green, it is John Deere [tractor] green, which is all MAACO had at the time. I have been unable to convince our U.S. provider of Studebaker replacement upholstery and panels to have '56 President fabric manufactured (not enough demand, he says), so I will eventually have the '57 reupholstered in light blue Naugahyde, similar to that posted above on my Malibu Blue '65 Cruiser. He can supply blue door panels for the car, which would look good, or I could go with an entirely new color scheme, although I REALLY LIKE the looks of your blue President. The last of the five photos I just posted show the 1956 President upholstery, which I prefer.

    Keep your car inside, and drive it on dry sunny days. We have lots of those in Montana, and I drove all of the cars in my previous posts today. The white Cruiser ran out of gas two blocks from my home and I fetched gas in the pickup. I think the white Cruiser also has a bad alternator, which I discovered today.
    Attached Files

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  • Stoody56
    replied
    Hi Jack in Montana, I really enjoyed reading all the comments raised by your post and agree with those who said make it safe, enjoy driving it and everything else is up to your budget, your desires and your time. I am in a similar position to you, in that my 56 President is very scruffy and has been like it for the 3 years I've owned it and I have a tight budget. I've done brake cylinders, linings, hoses, steering joints to make it safe and the rest has been the sheer enjoyment of playing and finding so many people who adore it. As you can imagine it is a huge rarity over here in England and it's condition is almost irrelevant compared to the "wow factor" and it's fascinating history (see my post" How many 56 Presidents are there out there", if you're interested). Unfortunately the weather here in south west England dictates whether I go out or not. Braving the rain with exposed rust and non existent window seals would soon result in overall deterioration and my desire is to preserve this wonderful piece of motoring history. So it's sunny days only and an eventual plan to repaint it in my time and by hand using coach paint.
    Forgive my English ignorance of things US, but what is Maaco? - is it a paint I can get over here? Incidentally, if you are disposing of those gauges, they look like they would fit my 56 - my bezels are peeling and fuel doesn't work. How much would you want?
    I'm going to try to add a picture of my Prez acting as wedding car for friends. It certainly caused quite a stir and was well photographed, flying the flag for Studebaker and getting the name out there. Apologies if I can't get the photo over as I'm new to this.

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  • SScopelli
    replied
    Or..

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  • jnfweber
    replied
    Originally posted by jimmijim8 View Post
    Scout around for a back yard or Maaco priced paint job like less than 1000.00 with you doing a good bit of the sanding/paint removal or whatever it takes to help to insure you end up with at least an average paint job making the car worthy of being washed/waxed. You can get by with enamel or single stage urethane. There is someone out there that can help you achieve this if you do a little bit of searching.
    I've done the sanding/paint removal on with the Maaco paint job, which actually cost around $1,800 about 16 years ago in California. I am now about 16 years older [74] and have either less stamina [or less ambition] but last year I removed all the chrome [bumpers] and trim [aluminum] from my '64 and '65 Cruisers [white and blue] and had them repainted in single stage urethane but let my local body and paint shop do the sanding and filling. I also polished the bumpers and detailed [painted] the trim, all for around $3,300. They both are very "presentable" as well as being "Interstate Cruisers".

    The Maaco [really] paint job was done on my pickup, both interior and exterior. I will probably go the same route with the '57 President.

    There have been lots of varied and interesting posts, and I appreciate all the comments and opinions.
    Attached Files
    Last edited by jnfweber; 09-12-2013, 01:49 PM.

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  • jnfweber
    replied
    Originally posted by StudeRich View Post
    The first thing that would be on my "to do list" for that Car is 4 NOS or New Springs, that would be number one.
    It was. Front springs were replaced with a pair of MOOG CC655 springs and 2 inch lowering blocks were removed from rear, then exhaust pipes were re-routed above rear axle. The car now sits level with about 6 inch ground clearance. Right front wheel cylinder was replaced and I have a pair of 12 inch finned drums in the trunk of the Cadillac to take to California to replace incorrect non-finned brake drum which is presently on the car. It has plenty of power [California home is on top of a hill], rides well, and stops well. Headlights, taillights, and brake lights work, and I eventually plan to replace idiot gauges with SW gauges which I have in a complete 58 GH dashboard, unless someone wants to buy a complete 58 GH dashboard first.
    Attached Files

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  • Mike Van Veghten
    replied
    For me, like most say....my "new" (will be a) daily driver 54 Conestoga has a rebuilt rear axle (shortened also), a rebuilt trans. new disc brakes frt. & rr, will get new fuel lines, new brake lines, has new wheels and tires, new wire harness, welded up a TON of holes (most factory !), new seats, a Commander dash (was orig. a Champian), a new set of rings, heavily ported heads, new carburetor, ignition in the engine. Fresh clean and paint under the hood. Have fresh control arms to install.

    The body, mostly has the original two tone blue, a mostly light grey primered hood (a fire in its past), rust thru in the left frt. fender, right front floor, a lightly wrinkled right front fender.
    I will give the strange wrinkle in the fender a try at repairing, but the paint and outer rust, and the grey primered hood will stay for a while, at least until the interior is complete....which knowing me...could take years..! I may do the current thought of clearing over the existing bodywork just to preserve what's currently there. It took many years to get that way, it deserves a chance at longevity..!

    When people ask about finishing it...I'll just shrug my shoulders and say something like, "I'm working on it !"

    Mike

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  • stude1964
    replied
    Like others I go the mechanical route first-cosmetic second. Good luck with your Stude.
    Rob in PA.

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  • Corley
    replied
    Showing cars is a total bore for me. Driving them and working, no, wait, the right word is 'playing' with them is where it's at.

    As for that seat, why do you think the Mexican's invented the "Mexican Blanket"? It's to cover up seats just like that one so the springs don't bite your butt!!!

    Life is good in the fast lane, but it's even better in the slow lane...

    JMHO

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  • pbrown
    replied
    Originally posted by ROADRACELARK View Post
    It goes without saying, make the necessary mechanical repairs/replacements, but always remember...it can only be "ORIGINAL" one time!!
    Funny, that's why I like my new (to me) 50 Silver Hawk. It started life as a 6, and had a 64 289 put in it by the PO.

    Since it is no longer original, I can do whatever I want to it to make it better for my purposes - without the specter of "non-originality" hanging over me!

    Phillip

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  • Blue 15G
    replied
    Originally posted by GThawkwind View Post
    In my opinion? Keep it running good, and get some seat covers. If you want to drive it and enjoy it I wouldn't worry about what anyone else says.
    I agree with GThawkwind's opinion 100%.

    The important thing is that YOU get enjoyment from the car.

    Dave Bonn
    '54 Champion Starliner

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  • jimmijim8
    replied
    Scout around for a back yard or Maaco priced paint job like less than 1000.00 with you doing a good bit of the sanding/paint removal or whatever it takes to help to insure you end up with at least an average paint job making the car worthy of being washed/waxed. You can get by with enamel or single stage urethane. There is someone out there that can help you achieve this if you do a little bit of searching. I don't know of you finances but am only offering this info assuming that you may be wanting something other than a running relic something that will pass off as a well cared for survivor type car that is near completely stock. The general public/casual observers reaction upon xamanation will be more gleeful thus promoting you to[ "fortunate to own a nice specimine status"]. Casual observers are not out there looking at cars as though they are concourse minded judges. You really should get to safety/reliability status 100%. DRIVE TO ENJOY and perhaps then go on to cosmetics. You'll know more of how far you want to improve it once you get into the scheme of things. Don't expect to make a profit if you sell it and learn as you go spending frugally. Lots of used parts if needed can suffice. Don't half step when it comes to safety items. Ask questions and attend the Stude meets. Don't believe everything you hear. Get a few opinions from Stude/brand X owners that have cars that have attributes that you see fit for your car also. Cheers jimmijim.
    Last edited by jimmijim8; 09-09-2013, 07:29 AM.

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  • ROADRACELARK
    replied
    It goes without saying, make the necessary mechanical repairs/replacements, but always remember...it can only be "ORIGINAL" one time!! As others have already said...it's your car and your money. Good luck on a great car!

    Dan Miller
    Auburn, GA

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  • StudeRich
    replied
    The first thing that would be on my "to do list" for that Car is 4 NOS or New Springs, that would be number one.

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  • mmagic
    replied
    For your sake, mine and anyone else on the road make sure it will stop before you make it go. Beyond that anything that impacts handling and safety on the road... tire... shocks... broken or extreme weak springs need to be addressed.

    Other than that its dealer's choice. If you chose to ride on seat springs without foam the punishment is your choice. If you like a glass bottom boat effect... enjoy. If you want to impress your neighbor the with a special paint job... it's your money.

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  • Dick Clemens
    replied
    Jack: Do it as you like. It should be a great driver and you will get a lot of enjoyment from it as is. I have really been happy with what you have done with the cruiser.

    studedick from the lower Ozarks

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