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lark rack and pinion steering

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  • lark rack and pinion steering

    Hello all, what is all involved in changing a 62 Lark over to a rack and pinion set up? I was wondering if it would give more clearance for exhaust..See previous thread about the reach rod..I having a heck of a time with this thing..Thanks!!

    Still working to restore my 62 Lark in South Bend, Indiana

  • #2
    quote:Originally posted by prager

    Hello all, what is all involved in changing a 62 Lark over to a rack and pinion set up?
    I think the Phantom kit is about $1500 plus maybe another $500 for column, and other needed mods (plus your labor). I think it would be cheaper to move either the motor or the stock steering box. Even cheaper to have a set of custom headers fabricated. Cheaper yet to use an OEM front dump cast manifold (one from the right side of a 70's-80's Chevy).




    Dick Steinkamp
    Bellingham, WA
    Dick Steinkamp
    Bellingham, WA

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    • #3
      I'll give you a really easy solution to this. Put a Studebaker engine in your Studebaker. The hard solution? Spend lots of money on a special front end, steering and probably custom headers and pipes.

      If your engine is new, you might be able to sell it and get a nice Stude 289 for your Lark. Put a paxton on it and you'll be able to smoke just about any Chevy on the block.


      Lotsa Larks!
      K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
      Ron Smith
      Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
      K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
      Ron Smith
      Where the heck is Fawn Lodge, CA?

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      • #4
        Try this site.
        www.fatmanfab.com
        I used them for the front end on my '40 Stude.Fit perfect and they were more than helpful.
        Mono mind in a stereo world

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        • #5
          Thanks for the tips and the link guys..Dick, front dump manifolds? Maybe thats the whole problem..I was thinking they used center dumps way back when, but I can now see how a front dump may do the job..Thanks!

          Still working to restore my 62 Lark in South Bend, Indiana

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          • #6
            quote:Originally posted by prager

            Dick, front dump manifolds? Maybe thats the whole problem..I was thinking they used center dumps way back when, but I can now see how a front dump may do the job..Thanks!
            They did use the center dumps (rams horns) in the 60's. Some models in the 70's and 80's used rear dump manifolds. The right side rear dump installed on the left side becomes a front dump. Check out your next swap meet. Usually all kinds of SBC exhaust manifolds to choose from. They are fairly easy to spot with the port configuration and the fact that they will be the most plentiful type there.


            Dick Steinkamp
            Bellingham, WA
            Dick Steinkamp
            Bellingham, WA

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            • #7
              Same message as many of the folks on the board. I can tell you that what was Phantom is now called "Slick Street Stuff" out of Knoxville, TN. I have their latest info and the basic kit is $2150.00 plus shipping and handling. 865-525-6151. I have been working on this same package for my 53 Commander Starlight Coupe. Based on my fab experience on many other cars...the obvious is keep the Studebaker stuff and use a Stude engine. If that is not an option, prepare for compromise and some expense. I have researched it all and the Fatman front stub is the absolute best, but pricey. The advice of a front dump (reversed) manifold will work on my application, but I am committed to changing the front end on my car. The 82-89 Chevy truck manifolds will almost work as is, but can easily be reversed. I am sure there are many others. I can send you pictures of a pair, or even let you try them. There is absolutely nothing wrong with the Stude suspension that I can see....it is simply not what I want. Move the steering box or the engine. It can be done as many will attest. Just wanted to pass along the information. The CK cars may be a little easier to compromise, as I can move the SB Chevy around a lot for the optimum position. Just more info.

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              • #8
                Dick & gotcha..thanks for the tips..I had overlooked the obvious on flipping the manifold..duh!! I wass looking at moving the steering box, but would much rather use the manifold way out.. I'm gonna do some junk searching to find a suitable manifold. I can get centerdumps that have 2.5 inch outlets, if I could find the rear dumper with a 2.5 outlet, that would be great..

                Still working to restore my 62 Lark in South Bend, Indiana

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                • #9
                  Do like Ford did back in the day...run one of the end dump iron manifolds upside-down so it points up and foward...run the pipe accross to the right side and then down under. The 312 T-Birds I think had'em that way.

                  No 2.5" end dumps from GM. May be some aftermarket somewhere though.

                  Mike

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                  • #10
                    I assume lark is rear steer ? if so there are several 80s/90s chrylser products with type fab brackets for rack and pump make sure steering is level at ride height

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                    • #11
                      When it comes to exhaust outlet location on GM manifolds, I THINK my 350 ci '73 3/4 Chevy truck has outlets at one end or the other. I haven't looked lately so I'm not saying my memory is correct, I can check though. If so, it'll be a lot easier finding truck manifolds of that year than cars. I don't know where you're at, but in Missouri we have plenty of truck only salvage yards with lots of 60-70s iron.

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                      • #12
                        I was thinking about installing a rack and pinion unit in my 62 Lark when I was thinking of using non Studebaker power but decided not to simply because I would rather spend my money on other things.

                        There is an article I found on by Googling "rack" "pinion" and "studebaker" that uses a R/P unit from a GM J bodied car with center steering and you fab a couple of brackets to install the rack to the frame and a bracket to hold the inboard end of your tie rods and you can use the stock PS pump. There is more to it but that's the Cliffs note version. Note sure about clearence since I do not have the aforementioned article handy

                        All things considered I would retain the stock Studebaker steering and if you want headers just buy the R3 units that a number of vendors sell.

                        Jeff T.

                        "I'm getting nowhere as fast as I can"
                        The Replacements.
                        \"I\'m getting nowhere as fast as I can\"
                        The Replacements.

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                        • #13
                          quote:Originally posted by Jeff T.
                          if you want headers just buy the R3 units that a number of vendors sell.
                          Yea...but they don't fit the Chevy V8 in Prager's Lark [)]




                          Dick Steinkamp
                          Bellingham, WA
                          Dick Steinkamp
                          Bellingham, WA

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                          • #14
                            oops, wrong glasses:0

                            Jeff T.

                            "I'm getting nowhere as fast as I can"
                            The Replacements.
                            \"I\'m getting nowhere as fast as I can\"
                            The Replacements.

                            Comment

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