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  • 53 with engine number V238379

    The newest 53 commander hardtop has an engine with this number and also it is the number used on the title as the ID number, is this a 259 engine? or did the 53 V-8 use a "V" in the engine number? my next question since I am going to be selling this car in the near future how many states would have a problem with the engine number as the ID number? I can get a new title with the vin number as the ID number with out much trouble. to look at the engine it looks like a 232 even right down to the small exhaust manifolds.
    Candbstudebakers
    Castro Valley,
    California



  • #2
    V8 Serial Numbers

    V-207,001 1953 Commander 4H
    232
    I guess you could describe it this way Bob, all V8's less than 289 cid were Prefix "V"

    From: http://www.studebakerdriversclub.com/V8EngineID.asp a '53 Commander 232 V8.

    You know, I think what would be a really big help to people trying to register cars from Calif. and several other States that used Engine Numbers, in Calif's case, up until 1954 would be, to print out the Calif. Statute? that required this to show to doubting DMV Persons.
    Last edited by StudeRich; 12-23-2013, 01:38 AM.
    StudeRich
    Second Generation Stude Driver,
    Proud '54 Starliner Owner



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    • #3
      I'm pretty sure Ohio would want the car's vin # on the title but the existing paperwork would be good as backup.

      Comment


      • #4
        Every vehicle before the use of VIN's (Vehicle Identification Number) is registered by their specific engine number, in CA and everywhere else.

        The problem was, if the engine was changed, the numbers no longer matched. VIN's eliminated this problem, as they register the entire vehicle.

        Dunno about Studebaker, but 1948 was the first year that Ford trucks came with VIN's, 1949 for FoMoCo passenger cars.
        Last edited by WinM1895; 12-23-2013, 10:36 AM.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by StudeRich View Post
          V-207,001 1953 Commander 4H
          232
          I guess you could describe it this way Bob, all V8's less than 289 cid were Prefix "V"

          From: http://www.studebakerdriversclub.com/V8EngineID.asp a '53 Commander 232 V8.

          You know, I think what would be a really big help to people trying to register cars from Calif. and several other States that used Engine Numbers, in Calif's case, up until 1954 would be, to print out the Calif. Statute? that required this to show to doubting DMV Persons.
          Thanks Rich for the info then this must be the original 232 engine and if it runs good all the better for an original car down the road some people like the number matching cars and right on the title the number is under the area where it says "engine or ID number" nothing on the title about vin. number.
          Candbstudebakers
          Castro Valley,
          California


          Comment


          • #6
            CA DMV's, SoCal & NorCal auto clubs have a large book they use that shows facsimile's of every engine number, every VIN for every country in the world...and where the hidden frame VIN's are stamped.

            The trick is...to get the clucks to use it.

            1/2004, I bought a 1962 GT Hawk in NY off ebay, went to the Whittier SoCal auto club office to register it (no long lines, no appointment necessary).

            When I passed what NY uses for a title for older vehicles to the cluck, she said this is invalid.

            I said to her..."how do you know this without looking in the book?" When she looked, there it was, a facsimile of the NY title. 10 minutes later I had my CA registration and plates.
            Last edited by WinM1895; 12-23-2013, 11:01 AM.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by WinM1895 View Post
              Every vehicle before the use of VIN's (Vehicle Identification Number) is registered by their specific engine number, in CA and everywhere else.

              The problem was, if the engine was changed, the numbers no longer matched. VIN's eliminated this problem, as they register the entire vehicle.

              Dunno about Studebaker, but 1948 was the first year that Ford trucks came with VIN's, 1949 for FoMoCo passenger cars.

              It depends on the definition of "VIN". I think most view "VIN" as the Vehicle Identification Numbers that were standardized and issued after 1981.

              Car SERIAL NUMBERS appeared before that (obviously) with the start year of their use varying by manufacturer.


              Also, I've owned many 50's cars with both an engine number AND a car serial number and only a couple of them that I can think of had the engine number as the identifying number on the title. Most had the car serial number on the title (door jamb plate number for a Studebaker). I don't think ALL the others were changed over time and that at least some were originally registered with this serial number. I don't think that ALL states titled ALL vehicles with the engine number after the car number (serial number) started to become available. This did make things a little confusing.
              Last edited by Dick Steinkamp; 12-23-2013, 11:09 AM.
              Dick Steinkamp
              Bellingham, WA

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              • #8
                It wouldn't hurt to get the title changed to show the serial number (in ADDITION to the engine number if possible), but at least here in Washington State if a valid, signed over title is presented to the Department of Licensing (in or out of state title), the car in question is not examined. It is purely a paperwork process.
                Dick Steinkamp
                Bellingham, WA

                Comment


                • #9
                  17 digit VIN's became standardized in 1981 for all vehicles sold in the US/Canada. Before this year, there was no standardization of VIN's....it was chaotic, to say the least.

                  For example, 1948/80 FoMoCo VIN's are composed of 11 digits, while other automakers VIN's may be composed of less or more.

                  1948/62 US Ford trucks have a Rating Plate riveted to the inside of the glove box door, 1963/80's have a Warranty Plate riveted to the left door face below the latch.

                  The VIN is stamped on these plates, but it's known as the Warranty Number (not for title or registration purposes), as these plates can easily be changed. Hidden VIN(s) stamped on the frame rail.

                  1963/80 ~ The usual problem: People replaced damaged left doors with used doors. 99.9% of the time, they failed to install the original Warranty Plates on the replaced doors.

                  On FTE (ford-trucks.com), I've decoded over 1,000 VIN's/Rating & Warranty Plates for members since 11/2006.

                  Probably 10% of the VIN's on the title don't match the Warranty Number on the plates, which means the other codes (axle/trans/color/body, etc) stamped on these plates won't match the trucks.

                  And, to make matters worse, there's no way to get any info from FoMoCo prior to 1967, as the idiots THREW AWAY all the records!

                  Late 1980's: Idiots were also planning to THROW AWAY all the 1967/79 records, but Kevin Marti, a Mustang/Shelby 'nut' found out...and got ALL of it. Info available from martiauto.com...for a fee.

                  btw: The last 6 digits of the VIN is the serial number.
                  Last edited by WinM1895; 12-23-2013, 11:52 AM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Dick Steinkamp View Post
                    It wouldn't hurt to get the title changed to show the serial number (in ADDITION to the engine number if possible), but at least here in Washington State if a valid, signed over title is presented to the Department of Licensing (in or out of state title), the car in question is not examined. It is purely a paperwork process.
                    In the late 80s I brought a 53K from OR to WA. I had to take the car to the State Patrol office and someone checked the # on the door post to see that it matched the title. Don't know if that is still done.
                    Don Wilson, Centralia, WA

                    40 Champion 4 door*
                    50 Champion 2 door*
                    53 Commander K Auto*
                    53 Commander K overdrive*
                    55 President Speedster
                    62 GT 4Speed*
                    63 Avanti R1*
                    64 Champ 1/2 ton

                    * Formerly owned

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Dick Steinkamp View Post
                      It depends on the definition of "VIN". I think most view "VIN" as the Vehicle Identification Numbers that were standardized and issued after 1981.

                      Car SERIAL NUMBERS appeared before that (obviously) with the start year of their use varying by manufacturer.

                      Also, I've owned many 50's cars with both an engine number AND a car serial number and only a couple of them that I can think of had the engine number as the identifying number on the title. Most had the car serial number on the title (door jamb plate number for a Studebaker). I don't think ALL the others were changed over time and that at least some were originally registered with this serial number. I don't think that ALL states titled ALL vehicles with the engine number after the car number (serial number) started to become available. This did make things a little confusing.
                      Many GM cars in the 30s had the engine number also stamped on the frame as a vehicle serial number. My 37 LaSalle is that way.
                      Skip Lackie

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by StudeRich View Post
                        V-207,001 1953 Commander 4H
                        232
                        [COLOR=#0000ff][B]I guess you could describe it this way Bob, all V8's less than 289 cid were Prefix "V"

                        From: http://www.studebakerdriversclub.com/V8EngineID.asp a '53 Commander 232 V8.
                        Rich - I think that you know better and just "mis-spoke". There were 1955 259 ci V8s with a P engine number.
                        Gary L.
                        Wappinger, NY

                        SDC member since 1968
                        Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Many, not all states, used the engine number for 1953s. New York was one of those states. I have always changed the ownership over to the Serial Number. This eliminates any problem with a future engine change.
                          The build sheet for the car would still be able to tie the original engine number to the Serial Number for this car.
                          New York does not issue a title for any pre-1973 car. You get a transferable registration form for ownership.
                          What is the Serial Number for the car?
                          Gary L.
                          Wappinger, NY

                          SDC member since 1968
                          Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by studegary View Post
                            Rich - I think that you know better and just "mis-spoke". There were 1955 259 ci V8s with a P engine number.
                            Of course you are correct Gary, I know about '55's being the most "Different" (keep it nice Rich.) Year ever for Studebakers, but I choose to erase them from my mind most of the time.

                            This statement has been edited by the politically correct Police!
                            StudeRich
                            Second Generation Stude Driver,
                            Proud '54 Starliner Owner



                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Studebaker did not use the term: Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) until 1966. That said, the Serial Number WAS used for the purpose of registration from the early fifties-on in many states. And even when Studebaker DID choose to phrase it: Vehicle Identification Number that one last year - it sure wasn't 17 digits long.
                              No deceptive flags to prove I'm patriotic - no biblical BS to impress - just ME and Studebakers - as it should be.

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