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Barn find: '58 President HT & '58 Packard 4-dr, both with factory AC

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  • Barn find: '58 President HT & '58 Packard 4-dr, both with factory AC

    My brother just bought two '58's, one a President HT, the other a Packard 4-dr. Both are loaded with options and are complete and unmolested. Both are 289-4V, AT, PS, PB, and factory AC. The Packard also has a Wonderbar radio, tinted glass, and TT. What are the odds of finding TWO '58's with AC? Both are best described as parts cars, although the President HT might be saveable. I have a copy of the "Supplement to the 1956 Studebaker Passenger Car Shop Manual, Covering 1958 Studebaker and Packard Models." Pages 26-31 cover the AC system, with good pictures that are identical to the AC systems on these two '58's.

    I am curious about what years S-P used this AC system. The trunk-mounted AC system Studebaker introduced in '55 sedans was used through the '57 model year--correct? We assume that the more modern, under-dash-evaporator system was introduced at the beginning of the '58 model year. It is possible that the changeover wasn't made exactly with the model-year changeover to the ’58's; does anyone know about that? Was this '58 AC system also used in the '59 Larks, or was it a one-year-only system?

    These cars probably would be good for authenticity info, so If anyone needs close-up pix of anything on these cars let me know & I will be happy to provide them. I can't respond quickly because I get to where the cars are only on the first Wednesday of each month when several of us in the Greater Virginia Chapter meet there.
    --Dwight FitzSimons

  • #2
    Sure would like to see some pictures of those...
    1950 Commander Land Cruiser
    1951 Champion Business Coupe
    1951 Commander Starlight
    1952 Champion 2Dr. Sedan
    1953 Champion Starlight
    1953 Commander Starliner
    1953 2R5
    1956 Golden Hawk Jet Streak
    1957 Silver Hawk
    1957 3E5 Pick-Up
    1959 Silver Hawk
    1961 Hawk
    1962 Cruiser 4 speed
    1963 Daytona Convertible
    1964 Daytona R2 4 speed
    1965 Cruiser
    1970 Avanti

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    • #3
      Does your brother intend to part these cars out or save them?
      sigpic1957 Packard Clipper Country Sedan

      "There's nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer"
      Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle
      "I have a great memory for forgetting things" Number 1 son, Lee Chan

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      • #4
        1958 President HT pix

        Click image for larger version

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        Here are pix of the '58 President HT; I'll post pix of the Packard shortly. When we get them cleaned up I'll take better pix. As to whether my brother will part out one or both that's unknown at present. Donald is a bit of a hoarder.
        -Dwight FitzSimons, Editor, Greater Va. Chap.-SDC
        Attached Files

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Dwight FitzSimons View Post
          My brother just bought two '58's, one a President HT, the other a Packard 4-dr. Both are loaded with options and are complete and unmolested. Both are 289-4V, AT, PS, PB, and factory AC. The Packard also has a Wonderbar radio, tinted glass, and TT. What are the odds of finding TWO '58's with AC? Both are best described as parts cars, although the President HT might be saveable. I have a copy of the "Supplement to the 1956 Studebaker Passenger Car Shop Manual, Covering 1958 Studebaker and Packard Models." Pages 26-31 cover the AC system, with good pictures that are identical to the AC systems on these two '58's.

          I am curious about what years S-P used this AC system. The trunk-mounted AC system Studebaker introduced in '55 sedans was used through the '57 model year--correct? We assume that the more modern, under-dash-evaporator system was introduced at the beginning of the '58 model year. It is possible that the changeover wasn't made exactly with the model-year changeover to the ’58's; does anyone know about that? Was this '58 AC system also used in the '59 Larks, or was it a one-year-only system?

          These cars probably would be good for authenticity info, so If anyone needs close-up pix of anything on these cars let me know & I will be happy to provide them. I can't respond quickly because I get to where the cars are only on the first Wednesday of each month when several of us in the Greater Virginia Chapter meet there.
          --Dwight FitzSimons
          The under dash unit was used in at least the '59 Larks. I removed one from a '59 Lark in a wrecking yard not too far from you (40+ years ago). I don't know about the '60s, but the '61 Larks had a completely different under dash/outside air unit. That was a one-year-only unit.
          The unit I removed had a conventional fan tp push air through the evaporator instead of a squirrel cage blower. Probably didn't cool very well.
          Last edited by 53k; 09-01-2016, 06:13 PM.
          Paul Johnson, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia.
          '64 Daytona Wagonaire, '64 Avanti R-1, Museum R-4 engine, '72 Gravely Model 430 with Onan engine

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          • #6
            Under the fin I envision a big hole,appears to need a lot of body panels & work to make it new again

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Dwight FitzSimons View Post
              Here are pix of the '58 President HT; I'll post pix of the Packard shortly. When we get them cleaned up I'll take better pix. As to whether my brother will part out one or both that's unknown at present. Donald is a bit of a hoarder.

              This A/C unit is clearly visible on page 27 in the 1958 Shop Manual Supplement.

              Craig

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              • #8
                Dwight a great find for your brother. Great to see the twins together!!
                sigpicSee you in the future as I write about our past

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                • #9
                  The J body looks to be a keeper!
                  Another one for the register.
                  Nicer looking than expected, hope your brother gets her running and stopping!
                  sigpic1957 Packard Clipper Country Sedan

                  "There's nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer"
                  Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle
                  "I have a great memory for forgetting things" Number 1 son, Lee Chan

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    'Looks like quite a find, regardless of condition. Congratulations.

                    'Looking forward to seeing pix of the Packard. BP
                    We've got to quit saying, "How stupid can you be?" Too many people are taking it as a challenge.

                    Ayn Rand:
                    "You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality."

                    G. K. Chesterton: This triangle of truisms, of father, mother, and child, cannot be destroyed; it can only destroy those civilizations which disregard it.

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                    • #11
                      '58 Packard 4-dr pix

                      Here are pix of the '58 Packard 4-dr. I agree with 57Pack, the j body (58 President HT) is a keeper. As loaded as the car is, and being a President HT, it should be restored. One of my "Studebaker fantasies" would be to convert that car to a '57. That is, put a '57 President front clip on it, remove the fins, and put either '57 or '56 tail lamps on it. Actually, I could live with the fins, just not those quad head lamps.

                      Quiz question: In the Packard engine compartment what jackleg-mechanic thing has someone done?
                      -Dwight FitzSimons
                      Attached Files

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Dwight FitzSimons View Post
                        Quiz question: In the Packard engine compartment what jackleg-mechanic thing has someone done?
                        Taken the generator.

                        Craig

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by 53k View Post
                          The under dash unit was used in at least the '59 Larks. I removed one from a '59 Lark in a wrecking yard not too far from you (40+ years ago). I don't know about the '60s, but the '61 Larks had a completely different under dash/outside air unit. That was a one-year-only unit.
                          The unit I removed had a conventional fan tp push air through the evaporator instead of a squirrel cage blower. Probably didn't cool very well.
                          I owned a 1960 Lark VIII with factory air conditioning. It was the large underdash box affair. 1961 was the big change and only one year integrated unit. 1962 went to a smaller underdash unit.
                          Gary L.
                          Wappinger, NY

                          SDC member since 1968
                          Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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                          • #14
                            I wonder what those red valve covers are doing under that Packard's hood...?
                            StudeDave '57
                            US Navy (retired)

                            3rd Generation Stude owner/driver
                            SDC Member since 1985

                            past President
                            Whatcom County Chapter SDC
                            San Diego Chapter SDC

                            past Vice President
                            San Diego Chapter SDC
                            North Florida Chapter SDC

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                            • #15
                              I think that, after all these years, the catfish Packard front end is starting to warm up to me
                              1960 Lark VIII Regal Wagon

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