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  • Have you ever stripped an Avanti?

    I'm having my '63 R2 repainted. It has been stripped to the fibreglass. The body shop says the car has lots of old bondo (30 years or more) in it that needs to be replaced at great costs. However, I've been told by at least one Stude expert and another knowledgeable body shop person that what's shown in these pix is just the skim coating done originally by Studebaker due to problems with the fibreglass bodies. And, that as long as the bondo is not cracked or degraded that it should be pretty much left alone. There is no evidence of collision damage and the car's under carriage and troughs are in great shape. The car has been repainted at least once before. What should I do??? Thanks!


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    edp/NC
    \'63 Avanti
    \'66 Commander

  • #2
    Looks exactly like my 64 Avanti did after plastic media bead blasting - is that how yours was done?

    Either your body shop is genuinely misinformed or they are trying to jack up the bill. Either way, it's time to find another place. Try to find a Corvette shop (America's other, more obscure fiberglas car) to give an opinion, since MFG made the bodies for both GM and Studebaker. Russ Farris
    1963 GT Hawk R-2 4-speed
    1964 Avanti R-1 Auto

    Comment


    • #3
      Yes, it was bead blasted. Did you have anything done to the original bondo in yours other than minor smoothing or touch up? Interesting that you mentioned Corvettes too. I currently own an '07 and the body shop manager claims to be a Vette expert. Thanks VERY much for the info.

      quote:Originally posted by maxpower1954

      Looks exactly like my 64 Avanti did after plastic media bead blasting - is that how yours was done?

      Either your body shop is genuinely misinformed or they are trying to jack up the bill. Either way, it's time to find another place. Try to find a Corvette shop (America's other, more obscure fiberglas car) to give an opinion, since MFG made the bodies for both GM and Studebaker. Russ Farris
      edp/NC
      \'63 Avanti
      \'66 Commander

      Comment


      • #4
        No major bondo was required, no previous collision damage. It was painted back in 1994 and still looks great. I'd be especially curious if he has experience painting older 'vettes. Russ Farris
        1963 GT Hawk R-2 4-speed
        1964 Avanti R-1 Auto

        Comment


        • #5
          Just finished mine in May. Have the whole car primed. Will be painting in Fall 2009. Most of the primer I found that Studebaker used was red. I found a spot , passenger door and rear quarter that had black primer. Previous accident. I soda blasted some parts and sanded or primed parts that looked ok. It took almost 2 yrs but, the cost of the class was inexpensive.

          Look into a local tech school for body shop classes. You'll save alot of money and get the satisfaction of doing the car yourself.

          This was the last week of class and I have the car completely primed. In the fall I'll sand down any rough spots, prep it and , hopefully, paint it.





          New Jersey & Studes Perfect Together

          Comment


          • #6
            Is that a Packard Hawk?? Nice. Obviously you didn't have to strip your Avanti, but did you find any "factory" bondo while doing the work? btw, I am an engineer and businessman who works Saturdays, goes to church on Sundays and has three grandkids. I haven't had time to take a class of any kind or do any hobby work on my own since the 80s. [8D]

            quote:Originally posted by bonehead007

            Just finished mine in May. Have the whole car primed. Will be painting in Fall 2009. Most of the primer I found that Studebaker used was red. I found a spot , passenger door and rear quarter that had black primer. Previous accident. I soda blasted some parts and sanded or primed parts that looked ok. It took almost 2 yrs but, the cost of the class was inexpensive.

            Look into a local tech school for body shop classes. You'll save alot of money and get the satisfaction of doing the car yourself.

            This was the last week of class and I have the car completely primed. In the fall I'll sand down any rough spots, prep it and , hopefully, paint it.





            New Jersey & Studes Perfect Together
            edp/NC
            \'63 Avanti
            \'66 Commander

            Comment


            • #7
              quote:Originally posted by edpjr

              I'm having my '63 R2 repainted. It has been stripped to the fibreglass. The body shop says the car has lots of old bondo (30 years or more) in it that needs to be replaced at great costs. However, I've been told by at least one Stude expert and another knowledgeable body shop person that what's shown in these pix is just the skim coating done originally by Studebaker due to problems with the fibreglass bodies. And, that as long as the bondo is not cracked or degraded that it should be pretty much left alone. There is no evidence of collision damage and the car's under carriage and troughs are in great shape. The car has been repainted at least once before. What should I do??? Thanks!

              /avanti5.jpg[/IMG][/img]
              I've stripped a half dozen, and they all had factory filler, and not always in the same place, I think, but can't prove, that the later bodies were better.

              JDP/Maryland
              JDP Maryland

              Comment


              • #8
                quote:Originally posted by JDP

                I've stripped a half dozen, and they all had factory filler, and not always in the same place, I think, but can't prove, that the later bodies were better.
                The late (best) ones, would most likely be the ones Studebaker Assembled the pieces on, and not Molded Fiberglass Co. of Ashtabula, Ohio [^]

                StudeRich
                StudeRich
                Second Generation Stude Driver,
                Proud '54 Starliner Owner

                Comment


                • #9
                  This has been an interesting exchange by forum members. Does someone know when Studebaker started producing Avanti bodies in South Bend?


                  "Growing old is mandatory, but growing up is optional." author unknown

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Very interesting post.... I new MFC made the bodies, but didn't know that Studebaker started producing the bodies later in South Bend. Does anyone know approximately what serial number the shift was made from MFC bodies to South Bend bodies?

                    <div align="left">John</div id="left">

                    <div align="left">'63 Avanti, R1, Auto, AC, PW (unrestored)</div id="left">
                    sigpic
                    John
                    63R-2386
                    Resto-Mod by Michael Myer

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      After you have it down to bare fiberglass, be sure to use either Morton Paints "Eliminator" or Feather Fill. They are both pretty much fiberglass resin with grey color pigment added. You mix ONLY what you intened to spray in the next 15 minutes, clean out the spray gun imeadeatly after, or throw the gun in the trash. Best used in a paint booth, as this stuff will stick to EVERYTHING, also be sure to wear the proper respirator!
                      Good stuff, it's about $45 a quart $110 a gallon. an Avanti takes a gallon. The stuff does NOT dry sand very good, but wet sanding is easy. Also use a guide coat to be sure you have all the imperfections out.

                      Jim
                      "We can't all be Heroes, Some us just need to stand on the curb and clap as they go by" Will Rogers

                      We will provide the curb for you to stand on and clap!


                      Indy Honor Flight www.IndyHonorFlight.org

                      As of Veterans Day 2017, IHF has flown 2,450 WWII, Korean, and Vietnam Veterans to Washington DC at NO charge! to see
                      their Memorials!

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                      • #12
                        The problem with my Avanti was I had hundreds of small blisters all over the car. Some parts I had to sand, some I soda blasted and I tried paint stripping . I basically experimented as I went along. I found a few factory flaws but, no bondo. The previous owner had passenger door rplcd and some bondo on the rear quarter panel. The primer was black and the inside of the door was painted turquoise, led me to believe that happened.

                        Also it looked as though he hit a parking block. The bottom lip was cracked and whoever "fixed" it used a little fiberglass mixed over newspapers and cardboard. I removed all of that and layed 3 sheets of fiberglass cloth mixed with resin and sanded it over 2 days after it dried.

                        Fiberglass is a pain to work with. If you sand too hard you create grooves . Any grooves and the previous damage rear quarter, i corrected and filled with Duraglass.

                        If I had a body shop do the work, in NJ , the average cost is $100 an hour . The course was $350 for a 72 hour class including tools and the paint booths. The classes were Mon & Wed nights from 6-9:30. The instructor even allowed us to come in early or stay late, if he was able to be there. You can see the difference between having someone do the work or doing it yourself.

                        What its going to boil down to is how much are you willing/have to spend ? If you have time and not enuff $$$, do like I did, go to your local Vo Tech school and take a class. I'm going on my 5th class this fall. The price is inexpensive and you do learn and appreciate what went into building this car.




                        New Jersey & Studes Perfect Together

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I stripped my dads 1969 Avanti II, and it looked like that after. Lots
                          of little spots all over the car. I am surprised your shop even knew
                          it was fiberglass and didnt assume it was ALL bondo covered steel!

                          Tom

                          '63 Avanti, zinc plated drilled & slotted 03 Mustang Cobra 13" front disc/98 GT rear brakes, 03 Cobra 17" wheels, GM alt, 97 Z28 leather seats, soon: TKO 5-spd, Ported heads w/SST full flow valves, 'R3' 276 cam, Edelbrock AFB Carb, GM HEI distributor, 8.8mm plug wires
                          '63 Avanti R1, '03 Mustang Cobra 13" front disc/98 GT rear brakes, 03 Cobra 17" wheels, GM alt, 97 Z28 leather seats, TKO 5-spd, Ported heads w/SST full flow valves.
                          Check out my disc brake adapters to install 1994-2004 Mustang disc brakes on your Studebaker!!
                          http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...bracket-update
                          I have also written many TECH how to articles, do a search for my Forum name to find them

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            quote:Originally posted by okc63avanti

                            Very interesting post.... I new MFC made the bodies, but didn't know that Studebaker started producing the bodies later in South Bend. Does anyone know approximately what serial number the shift was made from MFC bodies to South Bend bodies?
                            From my memory. Perhaps someone has documentation.

                            All of the body panels were made by MFG. Early Avanti bodies were assembled by MFG. Fairly early in the 1963 model year, Studebaker took over the assembly of Avanti bodies (using MFG panels).

                            Gary L.
                            Wappinger, NY

                            SDC member since 1968
                            Studebaker enthusiast much longer
                            Gary L.
                            Wappinger, NY

                            SDC member since 1968
                            Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              There's a lot of contrary information floating about through the years about Studebaker opening their own body assembly line for the Avanti. About all I know is Studebaker wanted to bring body assembly in-house as soon as possible due to problems with MFG bodies and the production bottlenecks resulting. At what point the in-house assembly line began is a big question. I don't know if there is any way to tell a Studebaker assembled body from an MFG assembled body. I don't know if Studebaker ever completely eliminated MFG assembled bodies or used those bodies side-by-side on the line. I've not seen information one way or the other beyond Studebaker's desire to take over body assembly.

                              I have seen in one account that when Nate Altman began Avanti Motor Company, one reason MFG was so amenable to doing business with him was that they had about 150 Avanti bodies left over when Studebaker cancelled the contract. Whether that means that was assembled bodies versus body panels for 150 bodies is unknown. MFG supposedly did supply Avanti Motors with assembled bodies at first until Altman could handle assembling bides in-house. Now when that changeover happened I have not seen any date on either.



                              Poet...Mystic...Soldier of Fortune. As always...self-absorbed, adversarial, cocky and in general a malcontent.
                              Poet...Mystic...Soldier of Fortune. As always...self-absorbed, adversarial, cocky and in general a malcontent.

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