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Autobody Archeology

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  • #31
    Originally posted by jclary View Post
    There's more than one way to look at what you are finding with this car. Although it may seem not to be the best quality, it might very well be the best previous owners were able to do, either for budget or skill reasons. However, they apparently loved it enough to preserve it long enough for you to find it and now you have an opportunity to preserve it even better.

    As you peel back the underlying issues, (as I did in the late 1980s & early 1990s on my '48 Business coupe), you can look for rust & rot between the front fenders & A-pillars. Often, there is serious rust around the fender vent door flanges. You might even have to fabricate new body to frame attachment boxes where the body bolts to the frame upfront. (I had to.) Those rubber gravel deflectors attached to your rear fenders may be hiding a fist-size hole rusted through the fenders. Besides protecting your paint from rock chips...those deflectors become rust incubators to the sheet metal behind them. It will give you an opportunity to learn how to fabricate and weld compound curve pieces to repair the damage. There are likely other interesting challenges and issues you will discover as you continue to explore. Let us know, as many of us have been down the same path with our own Autobody Archeology adventures.

    Of all the Studebaker cars produced, I believe it is the "Bullet Nose" Studebakers that have imprinted the word "STUDEBAKER" in the mind of the public. I have been taking various Studebaker vehicles to cruise-ins and shows for over four decades. I have often had comments from folks who know nothing about the Studebaker story being unaware that they made cars that were not bullet nose by design? When I drive my truck, I have often heard the comment, "I didn't know they made trucks!" When I drive my 1948 Business Coupe, I hear questions like, "Did you change the front?"

    However, I can not recall anyone who didn't instantly recognize a bullet nose as being a Studebaker. So...depending on how much you enjoy a challenge, you have the youth, energy, and real opportunity to accept the challenge, learn the skills, and preserve one of the true icons of automobile design. All the best to you and I look forward to how you work it out.
    Thank Fozzi the bear for all that bullet nose recognition!

    ....Ahhhh, a Bear in his natural habitat....a Studebaker!
    Diesel loving, autocrossing, Coupe express loving, Grandpa Architect.

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    • #32
      With proper prepping a Clear Coat may work to get the Shine back, but I fear it will show too much of the poor Paint and any imperfect Metalwork.

      Maybe if you want SOME Patina to show, it will work for you.

      But you have experience and Hands and Eyes On, that we don't, so you can figure that out I'm sure.

      On the OTHER Hand, if I were in your Job, I would let the best painter have at a Re=Paint!
      I had a Maaco Repaint done in Canada, they used Quality Sherwin Williams Base Metallic plus Clear and it came out very well.
      Last edited by StudeRich; 06-14-2021, 08:23 PM.
      StudeRich
      Second Generation Stude Driver,
      Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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      • #33
        Originally posted by StudeRich View Post
        With proper prepping a Clear Coat may work to get the Shine back, but I fear it will show too much of the poor Paint and any imperfect Metalwork.

        Maybe if you want SOME Patina to show, it will work for you.

        But you have experience and Hands and Eyes On, that we don't, so you can figure that out I'm sure.

        On the OTHER Hand, if I were in your Job, I would let the best painter have at a Re=Paint!
        I had a Maaco Repaint done in Canada, they used Quality Sherwin Williams Base Metallic plus Clear and it came out very well.
        Since I started this thread, I've actually tracked down and talked to Harry Wood's daughter, and this car was his pride and joy.

        He apparently bought it for $75 back in 1974 and proceeded to restore it to the best of his ability.

        He did everything to it including brushing on this Laquer paint job. It got painted some time around 1977, and most of the paint is still there, so I want to preserve it just the way it is, chips, dents, and bullet holes in all.

        She told me a story of how he drove it to the inspection station sitting on a 5 gallon bucket.

        It fail inspection.

        Anyways, I feel like I'm sort of doing the same thing that he did.

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        • #34
          I love cars like this. Not every car has to be a trailer queen. You're doing a fantastic job!

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          • #35
            So I half assed brazed the broken armature back together, and believe it or not it actually turns the engine again.

            I decided that my issue isn't really the ring gear (slightly chewed, but no severely damaged teeth) but it was my 12v conversion coupled with user error.

            So I'm going to get myself a 6v alternator (cheaper than getting the generator rebuilt) and put it in.

            I also ordered a used core auto light starter off of ebay, and I'm going to make one good starter from the two.

            It was actually cheaper then buying a new armature/having the snout welded again.

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            • #36
              Originally posted by jjester6000 View Post
              I decided that my issue isn't really the ring gear (slightly chewed, but no severely damaged teeth) but it was my 12v conversion coupled with user error.
              .
              Could you write more about this, please, particularly the user error part? If you really found the cause of the trouble, lots of folks would like to know the answer.
              RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

              17A-S2 - 50 Commander convertible
              10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
              10G-Q4 - 51 Champion business coupe
              4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
              5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon
              56B-D4 - 56 Commander station wagon
              60V-L6 - 60 Lark convertible

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              • #37
                Originally posted by RadioRoy View Post

                Could you write more about this, please, particularly the user error part? If you really found the cause of the trouble, lots of folks would like to know the answer.
                I didn't say that I actually figured it out, I said that decided what the problem was.

                The car was really hard to start before, so I would often accidently engage the bendix while the engine was still turning.

                It never broke on 6v, so I'm going back.

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                • #38
                  Keep the progress reports coming

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                  • #39
                    ​​​​​​ Click image for larger version

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                    I shined up the car a bit with some boiled linseed oil in order to take it to a cruise in.
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                    Last edited by jjester6000; 06-21-2021, 06:58 PM.

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                    • #40
                      Sitting that near the back of the Suburban it looks like it's been towed...
                      Josephine
                      -55 sedan

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                      • #41
                        Originally posted by Noxnabaker View Post
                        Sitting that near the back of the Suburban it looks like it's been towed...
                        I had to pull start it since my half assed repair on the starter didn't last, but the core starter just came today.

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                        • #42
                          Well it was advertised as a core online, but other than a sticky bendix (wouldn't engage at first) the starter is like brand new.

                          Someone definitely went the whole nine yards rebuilding it since they even painted the armature.

                          Anyways, my next problem is finding a right front brake drum since mine shattered, now I'm down to one wheel braking.

                          I can't seem to find one for a '51 Champion anywhere.

                          Does anyone know where I can get one?

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