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  • Fuel System: '53 commander fuel filter

    I have a 1953 commander that I "inherited" and it hasn't run for maybe 6-7 years. I want to get it going again but I know next to nothing about Studebakers. The glass bulb where the fuel filter needs replaced. There is some residue in the bottom that is who knows how old. My question is: Can I just replace the filter or does the whole thing (bulb and all need) need replaced. Where can I find just the filter?

    Thanks.

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  • #2
    As long as the bowl doesn't break you should only need to replace the filter, and perhaps the cork gasket. The resideue in the bowl can be easily washed out. The original filter was a ceramic cartridge and I believe it may still be available. I also added a filter in line back at the tank.
    "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

    Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
    Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
    '33 Rockne 10,
    '51 Commander Starlight,
    '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée",
    '56 Sky Hawk

    Comment


    • #3
      Welcome to the SDC and to the SDC Forum Jim!

      The most important thing you will need is a Cork Ring Gasket for that Glass Bowl on your Fuel Pump.

      That is because you will be able to loosen the screw/Nut at the bottom and remove and clean the dirt out of the Bowl, BUT it probably WILL damage the very Old Gasket in there.

      I can't tell very well from the Pic, but that Paper Filter Element may be OK. They normally had a Ceramic Filter in there, someone has used a different Element than stock, even a Screen will work.

      Pg. 185 of the Studebaker International Catalog shows the Element (Filter) 535702 and also a Kit 800778 (Bowl, Screen & Gasket) for a Champion Six AC Fuel Pump that is the same as your V8 AC Brand pump and may work.
      http://www.studebaker-intl.com/catalog_pdf/fuel.pdf

      Other Studebaker Vendors here may also have what you need:
      http://studebakervendors.com

      You will not have ANY Problem finding Parts for your newly acquired '53 Studebaker Commander in the VERY Large Studebaker Community.
      StudeRich
      Second Generation Stude Driver,
      Proud '54 Starliner Owner

      Comment


      • #4
        Welcome to the forum. You have inherited a very desirable car. How about some pictures, please?

        Here is my best advice in no particular order.

        -buy the shop manual, the chassis parts catalog and the body parts catalog. They show all the parts, what their correct name is and the part number. Studebaker vendors use these part numbers to assure that you get the correct parts.

        http://studebakervendors.com/

        -Start slowly, learn your vehicle. Get it stopping and running, drive it and fix the little things that need to be fixed as you learn.

        -For some reason, replacing systems with parts from other brands of cars seems to be the first thing that comes to mind for a new-to-Studebaker owner. But the vehicle does not need to be re-designed with parts from another brand. If you bring everything up to specification, re-bush the bushings and so on, you will have a reliable, well running and well driving vehicle. Studebaker engineers were professionals who knew what they were doing.

        -do not take the vehicle apart. It's the thing that everyone seems to think of, BUT... It is one hundred times easier to take something apart than it is to put it back together. Leave the ground up restorations to the pros with the tools, knowledge and money to complete the task.

        -Whenever you do disassemble something, do it with the idea in mind that you have to put it back together again. If you disassemble something, lay the parts out in the order they came off. Then, put them back on in the same order. That alone will save you lots of grief.
        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

        Comment


        • #5
          Use a new gasket and do not overtighten the glass bowl. Tighten it just enough where it does not leak.
          Replace all of the fuel before trying to start the car. Also, change the engine oil.
          Gary L.
          Wappinger, NY

          SDC member since 1968
          Studebaker enthusiast much longer

          Comment


          • #6
            Yes, to what Roy said. Keeping the car together and drivable will let you enjoy it while you fix one thing at a time. Most of the time they don't need much other than good routine maintenance and lubrication on all the moving parts. I'd blow through the filter to determine if it needs to be replaced. It looks pretty clean to me, and the glass will clean up by using fine steel wool and gas.

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            • #7
              Another thing to think about is the old fuel in the car. After that period of time, there is a good chance it will no longer burn like it needs to.

              Would be a good idea to drain what you can out and put in enough to get things started and running. Another idea is to disconnect the fuel line at the carb and put the end inside a plastic pop bottle. You can turn it over until the bottle is half full. Empty and repeat. When you are getting fresh fuel, check to see if there is anything in the fuel. If clean, move on.

              Good luck with the car and as mentioned above, please share photos of the car - some of us are visual learners.

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              • #8
                If you can't find the gasket thru the Studebaker vendors, try tractor supply (possible tractor part) or NAPA if you have an old-timer there. Forget about Autozone, et. al.....

                Comment


                • #9
                  62champ has a good idea about getting rid of the old gas. In the early 80's I bought a 52 Champion that had been parked in a farmer's pasture for a number of years. When I got it home I connected a small tank to the carb to run the engine. It ran like new, but the fuel pump wouldn't pump anything, so I removed the fuel line at the pump, and tried to blow back into the tank. It was plugged solid, so I made a grease fitting adaptor, filled my grease gun with diesel, and pumped the gun to try to blow back into the tank. Even with the 2,200 plus PSI from the grease gun, it wouldn't open the line. I'd never heard of this kind of blockage before.

                  I know the grease gun produces over 2,000 PSI, because I also made an adaptor to check the pop off pressure for my diesel Rabbit injectors, and it was something in the order of 2,200 PSI before they opened.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Thanks to everyone for your help and advice. I'm sure I'll need more help as I go since I really have no idea what I'm getting into. The car was apparently restored back in the 90's and then the owner died about 10 years ago. It sat around getting started once in a great while and then everybody lost interest. Then it came to me. I thought the car was too nice to just be yard art so I decided to get it going again and drive it as is. Eventually I'll paint it, maybe back to its original colors of blue over white.

                    It actually doesn't look too bad from 20 feet, but up close there are some nicks and scrapes and a couple of places where the paints is chipping off and the chrome needs to be redone. It is, however, a process and I've got the time to go at my own pace so I don't screw anything up. I'm posting a couple of pictures below after I cleaned it up a bit.

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                    • #11
                      What a beauty! Why did I never inherit something like that?

                      You can contact the Studebaker National Museum in South Bend, Indiana and buy a copy of the build sheet. That will tell you all of the options the car was built with, the original colors and where the car was shipped when new.
                      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

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Jim,
                        If you haven't already, you will want to join the Studebaker Drivers Club, as well as your local chapter. We can only rehash a limited amount here on the forum that the SDC will deliver monthly to your door. And your local chapter members can help immensely, as they've been there and done that which you are now anticipating.

                        http://studebakerdriversclub.com/join.asp

                        And here's really good article that's been shared over and over with new Studebaker owners. It covers a lot more than we can here.

                        http://studebakerdriversclub.com/TechThings2do.asp
                        "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

                        Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
                        Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
                        '33 Rockne 10,
                        '51 Commander Starlight,
                        '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée",
                        '56 Sky Hawk

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          You did better than winning the lottery. Some people sure have good luck.
                          How could anyone have ever lost interest in the most beautiful car ever built?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Old timer reminds me of a funny story, worth repeating. About 30 years ago I was restoring a '59 A-H Sprite.

                            I needed a new battery for another car. We had the usual national car parts stores, and close by was an ancient Mom-and-Pop parts store. What I needed was a common group 24 battery, so I went to the Mom-and-Pop.

                            The youngster at the counter, I think he was a grandson, produce a new battery and then asked "anything else?"

                            Being a smart-ass, I said, "Yes, I need an exhaust pipe and muffler for a '59 Sprite." The youngster didn't flinch, just went into the back room and produced the parts.

                            "So, how much are those", I asked.

                            "The pipe is $8, and the muffler is $9." He said.

                            "Wow, that's really cheap".

                            "Yeah, well, it looks like they've been on the shelf since 1964, and that's the price marked on them."

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