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224 cu-in V8 rebuilt

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  • Engine: 224 cu-in V8 rebuilt

    Hello,my first post;just bought a 1955 E7 pickup with the 224V8 commander engine in it,engine casting #2E-4979;Compression test show good numbers except one dead cylinder,so i decided to go ahead and do a complete rebuilt.I would like to know what are good points of this engine but also what areas need improving with upgrades;any information will help.Thanks

  • #2
    You should check and see why the one cylinder is dead. Usually just a valve job is needed. That one hole probably has an exhaust valve that looks like it was hit with a hatchet. No sense throwing money away needlessly.

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    • #3
      You may have done this already, but if not ,pull the valve cover on that side and see if the valve is stuck open. Had this happen on an old tractor I bought. The rocker had held the valve open for years, and it was stuck in the guide. A little penetrating oil, and tapping on the valve, freed it up, and the tractor ran great.
      Tom Senecal Not enough money or years to build all of the Studebakers that I think I can.

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      • #4
        nice little engine. good low end torque. good economy, especially with Overdrive (OD knob). too many upgrades to mention... would need to know driving habits and expectations..... driving 1950's style = no upgrades required...

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        • #5
          Originally posted by alain View Post
          Hello,my first post;just bought a 1955 E7 pickup with the 224V8 commander engine in it,engine casting #2E-4979;Compression test show good numbers except one dead cylinder,so i decided to go ahead and do a complete rebuilt.I would like to know what are good points of this engine but also what areas need improving with upgrades;any information will help.Thanks
          The 224" is practically indestructible because it doesn't make enough horsepower to hurt the hell-for-stout Stude engine components. I drove a '55 224" 4-speed 3/4 ton for thirty years with zero engine problems; I never replaced a piece of it other than ignition wear parts.

          Agree with Alan and tsencal, since the other cylinders have good compression, just repair what is hoped to be a bad valve and drive it for a while.

          If and when you decide to rebuild it, last I checked 224" pistons were NLA, so find a common-as-dirt 232" or 259" crankshaft and build it as a 259". You'll be glad you did.

          jack vines
          Last edited by PackardV8; 06-30-2017, 12:48 PM.
          PackardV8

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          • #6
            Thanks for the good advice about checking only what caused that one cylinder has no compression and that it could be just a case of a bad valve that would not require to rebuilt the all engine.I also will check if hardened seats have been installed if that engine requires it for unleaded fuel.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by alain View Post
              I also will check if hardened seats have been installed if that engine requires it for unleaded fuel.
              Unlikely hard seats have been installed, but anything is possible. How many miles per year do you anticipate driving? Does your truck have overdrive? With the lower RPMs of overdrive, you can go a looong time before exhaust seat recession becomes a problem. With the higher highway RPMs of the 4-speed, I did notice some slight recession over the many years I drove it.

              One weakness to keep in mind is at extended highway speeds, the early Stude V8s will pump oil up to the rockers faster than it can drain down. Eventually, you'll notice the oil pressure starting to drop. Continue at that speed much longer and you'll hear the rod bearings going away.

              Around 1961, Studebaker Engineering modified the oil holes in the rocker shafts and rocker arms to restrict oil going upstairs and slightly enlarged the drain holes.

              jack vines
              PackardV8

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