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Sometimes we get lucky

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  • Sometimes we get lucky

    I have been looking for a nice bullet nose for some time for my 50 Commander keeper. I have watched in amazement at the prices some of these have been bringing. I never dreamed I would score an NOS one. Recently on Ebay I won two auctions where the seller had sold the two pieces separately. The outer ring still has the protective coating on it. I am thinking this kept the price lower than I expected.

    I guess I took a gamble in a way in that I thought the reason it looked so bad was the fact that it still had the shellac coating on the outer ring, I could have been wrong.

    I have a couple nice cores but hesitated having them rechromed as most of the rechromed ones seem to loose details around the lettering.

    I do wonder what it would have brought had the seller cleaned off the shellac and sold both pieces in one auction.

    To those somewhat new to the Studebaker world, Studebaker often put a protective coating of shellac on its chrome parts in order to protect it. They seemed to stop this in the mid fifties. Thus if you are looking for chrome and find some with a yellow-goldish finish on it, you should know that you can take denatured alcohol and remove the shellac and have a very nice NOS piece.

    1947 Champion (owned since 1967)
    1961 Hawk 4-speed
    1967 Avanti
    1961 Lark 2 door
    1988 Avanti Convertible

    Member of SDC since 1973

  • #2
    I got lucky one time on ebay, I bought an NOS horn ring for my 52, the guy listed it as Studibaker horn ring. Nobody looked, and I got it dirt cheap!

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    • #3
      the shellac coating was used on the thin Korea era plating
      Barry'd in Studes


      • #4
        Originally posted by unclemiltie View Post
        Studebaker often put a protective coating of shellac on its chrome parts in order to protect it. They seemed to stop this in the mid fifties.
        Referred to as Korean War Chrome.
        Good chrome starts with a layer of copper over the substrate. The copper bonds well with the steel or pot metal. Then a layer of nickel, which does not bond well to the steel or pot metal but does bond well to the copper. Then the layer of chrome, which bonds poorly to the steel or pot metal, better to the copper, and very well to the nickel.
        When nickel was at a premium for the war effort it was removed from the process and, in order to minimize the deterioration of the inferior chrome to copper bond, the clear coat was added to reduce the d-ionization of the bond.
        "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.
        '33 Rockne 10,
        '51 Commander Starlight,
        '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée",
        '56 Sky Hawk


        • #5
          Good score. I went through the same thing looking for a new steering wheel for my '50 Commander. After two years I got one off ebay, NOS. Patience is often rewarded.
          Ed Sallia
          Dundee, OR

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