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T96C Cluster Gear

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  • Transmission / Overdrive: T96C Cluster Gear

    Please forgive my ignorance as this may be common knowledge but it was news to me.

    I was searching online and saw a T96 cluster gear, part #521489, and checked it against the 1959-64 chassis parts book and it fits 1959-63 T96 transmissions. So, next was to see why not the 1964 T96. Digging deeper it turns out the 1964 had a different gear set/ratios. What Studebaker did was give the 1964 models, that used this transmission, a bit more pep over previous models. The tradeoff is a slightly bigger jump to the final/third/top gear, just over 3-1/2 mph, with 26" tires, a 3.73 ring and pinion, with shift points at 3000 rpm. (just some numbers that I plugged into a calculator)

    I have a question. What did Studebaker do for 1964 six cylinder engine from 1963? Was this the only change that would make a performance difference? I see there was a carburetor change and also the oil pressure listed jumped up to 45 psi from 30 for the 63. I can't see any oil pump changes but the rear cam bearing was new for 63. The accompanying camshaft is noted, note #25 in the engine section, for a mid model change. Maybe that helped the oil pressure. There was no 3.54 available in 1964 but that is just one of many ratios to choose from and that would not necessitate a transmission ratio change. It could just be a very simple answer in that Borg Warner did not offer the earlier ratio anymore.

    Boy, there is a lot of subtle differences with these later model sixes. Those engineers were fighting to the end.

    Good thing I never ran into a 64 trans when I rebuilt my T96 years ago, as I would have just used parts from any and all T96s. I probably would have checked it out and found this out, hopefully before a gear clash.

    This means that we have close and wide ratio T96 transmissions to choose from. A swap either way, up or down with the ratios, between 1964 and the other years could be helpful in dialing in the perfect setup for six cylinder cars based on the drivers habits and preferences.

  • #2
    That is interesting! I doubt you could even assemble a T96 with the wrong cluster in it. The teeth would never mesh with the teeth of the gears on the mainshaft. I do know the '64 OHV sixes used a slipper-skirt style of piston.
    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands


    • #3
      Originally posted by gordr View Post
      That is interesting! I doubt you could even assemble a T96 with the wrong cluster in it. The teeth would never mesh with the teeth of the gears on the mainshaft. I do know the '64 OHV sixes used a slipper-skirt style of piston.
      Yes, that's what I meant by "clash". During the rebuild all would have been revealed, gears not meshing.

      I see there were new pistons for 63 and again for 64 and from what I read years ago, IIRC, the 64s are most likely not available and the rings were also different. It could have been that the rings were not available leaving the 64 pistons not useable.

      I know the head had the water heater nipple moved towards the middle of the head instead of towards the rear.

      It could also be the with the car getting heavier the little ratio change made the weight difference not noticeable in the lower gears?

      Anyway, I found that cluster gear noteworthy, and after 40 years playing with Studebakers there is still so much more to know.


      • #4
        It is pretty well known that the Engine Engineers were scrambling to cure the overheating and resultant head Cracking issue.
        That brought quite a bit of pressure to fix it since there were a Large number of U.S. Post Office Zip Vans causing complaints about Engine failures.

        My opinion is the possibility of over-revving them was a BIG part of the problem, with a direct drive H.D. Flight-O-Matic and 4.27 Ratio TT rear axles, they NEVER should have been allowed out of a 25 MPH Residential Zone!
        Second Generation Stude Driver,
        Proud '54 Starliner Owner
        SDC Member Since 1967


        • #5
          It seems like a lot of drivers, especially employees in company vehicles, are not cognizant of what is going on with the engine.
          Last edited by RadioRoy; 05-26-2021, 09:27 PM.
          RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

          10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
          4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
          5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon


          • #6
            What you mentioned about the oil pressure is interesting as they rerouted the oil pressure line from the right side of the engine (close to the oil pump) to the left front side (farthest from the oil pump), supposedly to avoid high pressure readings. This began with car 63S-21015.
            Nice day to all.