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Lost something on my drive yesterday.

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  • Cool/Heat: Lost something on my drive yesterday.

    I had Blu out for a run yesterday afternoon. It was a beautiful clear day, over 90 °F and very humid. About 45 mins into my drive I notice a trail of fluid in my rear view mirror. An intial check of the gauges was reassuring. But that was short lived. The temperature started rising quickly.

    When I got home I discovered this!!
    Click image for larger version

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    One of the core plug ejected itself.

    Is this symptomatic of another issue or just a poor install?

    ​​​​​​​The plug next to this one is the expandable type with the bolt, which looks like it may have been leaking too. I believe that this missing one was the same.

    The PO rebuilt the motor 15 years ago but the car has only logged 6000 miles since the rebuild.

    I also want to mention that prior to the event, the car was running at 180°, and it consistently runs between 160° and 180°. Overheating has not been an issue.

    ​​​​​​​

  • #2
    It seems like just an installation issue. After 15 years it may have loosened up some, or the seal on the expandable plug got hard, and lost its holding ability. Probably better plan on changing all of them with good solid soft plugs. Glad that you made it home with it.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by tsenecal View Post
      It seems like just an installation issue. After 15 years it may have loosened up some, or the seal on the expandable plug got hard, and lost its holding ability. Probably better plan on changing all of them with good solid soft plugs. Glad that you made it home with it.
      I am concered about any damage that may have taken place. The temp gauge was peg at 240° for over a minute as I desperatly tried to get it home.

      Comment


      • #4
        I had the same thing happen on my car. The idiot who put the core plug in did not "dimple" it enough. And that idiot was me. You probably did not "cook" the engine but the only way to find out is to fix it and try it. When mine crapped out I just had it towed home. Is that one behind the starter?
        _______________
        http://stude.vonadatech.com
        https://jeepster.vonadatech.com

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        • #5
          Originally posted by nvonada View Post
          Is that one behind the starter?
          Middle one on the passenger side.

          Frustration now in trying to find any of what use to be common parts in the FLAPS. On-line orders means 5 to 10 days of waiting.

          What is the exact size of the core plugs on a 259?

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by 4NStudy View Post
            I am concerned about any damage that may have taken place.
            Remember, these Studebaker engines were very much overbuilt. They can withstand a lot of things that would scare the pants off modern engines.

            "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

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            • #7
              Originally posted by 4NStudy View Post

              Middle one on the passenger side.

              Frustration now in trying to find any of what use to be common parts in the FLAPS. On-line orders means 5 to 10 days of waiting.

              What is the exact size of the core plugs on a 259?
              If they're the cup type just get a plug set for a Ford 289/302/351w. A set of brass plugs cost me $11, they're 1 1/2". Any auto store should have them, but most just look at you dumbfounded if you say Studebaker.
              sigpic

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              • #8
                Yikes, the antifreeze must have poured out real fast with that big an opening. Hopefully you didn't harm the engine, because without coolant they heat up pretty quickly. You're lucky it didn't seize up. At this point put in a new freeze plug or two, fill it with antifreeze and see how it runs. If it smokes a lot you may have scored a cylinder wall.
                Dan Peterson
                Montpelier, VT
                1960 Lark V-8 Convertible
                1960 Lark V-8 Convertible (parts car)

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                • #9
                  I have had this happen. I stopped immediately and got towed to where a new core plug could be installed. This was a car that I had just purchased. A tow is a lot cheaper than a rebuild. I hope that you lucked out.

                  EDIT: With many/most Studebakers I carried a spare core plug, the rubber type that you install and then tighten. Of course, I never needed one then.
                  Gary L.
                  Wappinger, NY

                  SDC member since 1968
                  Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Well I just got Blu running again. Seems to be OK. No strange noises, no odd smells or smoke. I may have escaped unscathed on this one.

                    Won't have time to drive it until later this week.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I've lost two freeze plugs during the 50+ years that I've had my Powerhawk...

                      The first time was during the first year of ownership, (with about 35K), and I was close to home late one night. I just drove it to my regular parking place and the following morning drove to a local shop and had it replaced with no apparent damage.

                      About four years later with about 70K, I lost another one some seven miles from home and during the attempt to that destination, the engine seized. Later that evening I returned to the scene of the disaster with the family mechanic, (who looked like and had the personality of Kruchev), who ordered me to "start it up." After I protested and finally turned the key it started right up! Smoked some but otherwise ran as normal. After running it for less than a minute I shut it down and we proceeded to attach a tow chain for the five mile run to his shop.

                      The next day, I returned to the shop where he had already replaced the plug with the comment that rings had lost most of their temper, the pistons probably collapsed but no other damage was apparent so the car could be driven on a temporary basis with one issue, about 200 miles or so per quart of oil. I drove the car for about nine months in that condition.

                      Now time had come to strip the engine and take advantage of the $1 pistons, (Standard Surplus), and set of moly rings that I purchased earlier. In addition, I polished the crankshaft, lapped the valves, installed new umbrella seals in each head. He strictly ordered me NOT to hone the cylinders and of course I replaced all of the freeze plugs. At first the oil consumption was a little over 500 miles per quart but by 5K was in excess of 2,000 miles per quart. Now the car has about 90K and still is an oil miser. In the early 1990's, I again replaced all six freeze plugs with brass plugs where they remain today.

                      All of this reflects the quality of the original engineering and the quality of the materials used to manufacture these engines. Certainly, Bob Palma's claim that the Studebaker V8 may be one of the best post war designs has high merit in my opinion...

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                      • #12
                        I guess I’ve been lucky driving my Studebakers for all these years. Only had leaking core plugs. One on the back of the block on a six cylinder 1957 Transtar pickup. Studebaker thoughtfully provided a small removable panel to access the back of the block. The other time was on my 1963 Lark Daytona Wagonaire. I noticed a green puddle on the garage Floor. Upon inspection I found a leaking core plug. Got a screwdriver and probed it, right on through! Not much metal left, guess the paint was the only thing preventing a gusher! That time I pulled the motor and replaced all of the plugs. Had a bad flightomatic ring gear to replace anyway.
                        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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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by GrumpyOne View Post
                          ........

                          All of this reflects the quality of the original engineering and the quality of the materials used to manufacture these engines. Certainly, Bob Palma's claim that the Studebaker V8 may be one of the best post war designs has high merit in my opinion...
                          You're tale gives me hope. Fingers crossed!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I have had this happen on more than one Stude, especially if pushed real hard, like in a drag race situation. I bead blast them all now, (brass) and use JB weld on the edges.
                            Bez Auto Alchemy
                            573-318-8948
                            http://bezautoalchemy.com


                            "Don't believe every internet quote" Abe Lincoln

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by bezhawk View Post
                              I have had this happen on more than one Stude, especially if pushed real hard, like in a drag race situation. I bead blast them all now, (brass) and use JB weld on the edges.
                              Using JB weld on them, can you get them out to replace them when it's time? Why not just install screw in plugs? They only cost about twice what standard plugs do, but you'll need a 1 1/4" pipe tap to thread the block.
                              sigpic

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