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1950 Studebaker 2R5: Immediate Mechanical Needs

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  • Engine: 1950 Studebaker 2R5: Immediate Mechanical Needs

    I recently purchased a 1950 Studebaker 2R5 pickup that is nearly all original (it had restoration work done in the mid 90's) and I would like to get this group's thoughts on the immediate action items I should take before taking it out on the road. To note, I have plans to upgrade the existing drum brakes with Turner disc brakes, but what other immediate things should I have a knowledgeable Studebaker mechanic look at before I take my new project out on the road? Thanks in advance for your suggestions.

  • #2
    My rule of thumb is first trips drive it no further than you can push it back. Around the block, down the street. Stay off the highways.

    Good luck

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    • #3
      I would keep it all stock, make sure the brakes work, check all fluids and change those that look dirty. Put in good gas without ethanol, and if it sat for years, then a can of Sea Foam in the gas would be a good idea. Be sure the cooling system has antifreeze to keep rust away and lubricate the water pump. Drive it and have fun for 6 months before you make any changes. I never found my cars needed any changes, except my 63 Lark should have overdrive.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by sampsonka4 View Post
        I recently purchased a 1950 Studebaker 2R5 pickup that is nearly all original (it had restoration work done in the mid 90's) and I would like to get this group's thoughts on the immediate action items I should take before taking it out on the road. To note, I have plans to upgrade the existing drum brakes with Turner disc brakes, but what other immediate things should I have a knowledgeable Studebaker mechanic look at before I take my new project out on the road? Thanks in advance for your suggestions.
        I would not worry with the brake conversation. The truck has 11 inch brakes and at the speeds your truck will go, they will stop the truck very well. Besides, if you that close to someone in front of you, disc brakes aren't going to stop you anyway.

        That said, now depending on how long the truck has sat, you might want to clean the fuel system, bleed the brake system, check axle bearings/seals, check all fluids: radiator (check hoses for pliability and cracks), brake, transmission (and don't forget), the OD section, (as it is serviced separately from the transmission), and rear differential. Check and clean major electrical connections. Check water level and load test battery. Check ignition: plugs, points, condensor, rotor, cap and wires, (tune up if necessary). Check tire dates (if older then 5 years, I'd think about getting new ones), side walls and treads for weather/age related cracking. Check and ensure that your windshield wipers are working. If they are vacuum you might consider getting a fuel pump with vacuum assist, or even convert them to electric. Check critical components for lose bolts, nuts, etc... Nothing like the annoying rattle of a shock absorber arm come lose.

        I'm sure there are a few things I probably missed, like the plumbing for the kitchen sink, but just have them do a through look over. Nothing like heading out to the Salt Lick, and breaking down on the side of the road, miles from no where and no signal!!!
        Bo

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        • #5
          I second Bo's list. Unless you are sure the previous owner has done any of those things on his list. I also believe the disc brake upgrade is unnecessary, unless you're planning on driving the truck in rush hour freeway traffic at the rate of traffic flow, then it might be of use. Worst case scenario? It'll train you, retrain you, to drive in traffic with a sensible space cushion in front of you. It has been an interesting, and I believe, positive experience driving a 60 year old car in regular traffic and I'm finding that, I'm simply readjusting to driving a car the way I used to when I first was driving cars like this.
          Get seat belts, and shoulder belts if you prefer, installed, up your insurance coverage and adding a right side mirror if you don't have one and drive it.

          Enjoy!!

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          • #6
            Pics!! Also, check out the Studebaker Truck Talk forum for advice. https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/stud...k-talk-f23885/

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            • #7
              it's not your driving that's going to smash it anyway, it's the idiot that cuts in front of you and slams on the brakes for a right hand turn from the left lane you need to worry about.....

              I've got a 2R5, bone stock with a couple exceptions. I do have a turner Dual Piston MC, and 12V genny conversion. I also have an Overdrive, which is a huge plus.

              My suggestion is this. Make sure the brakes are 100%, check the hard lines for corrosion, and change every rubber component in the brake system. (hoses, MC and Wheel Cyl).
              I went DOT-5 in my system and it's a great help to prevent brake system lockup, but you must flush EVERYTHING out and rebuild the entire system to do it.

              Also do the above checks others have spoken about, and at the same time check the tires. Modern tires dry rot before the tread gets worn down, so check the DOT codes on them and be mindful of cracking.

              change to oil, check the Antifreeze and other fluids and drive it around slowly to get comfortable with it.

              Like another said, don't drive it farther than you can push it back for 6 months....
              after that, start taking longer trips.

              Forget about rush hour stuff, that's a recipe for disaster. I used to drive mine on the interstate some going to military duty, but the truck and I are both too old for that now.

              it's mostly back roads for us now.

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