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1962 down Stude Lark vs. 1963-66; was the body integrity better on the older ones?

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  • Body: 1962 down Stude Lark vs. 1963-66; was the body integrity better on the older ones?

    I read somewhere that the 1963+ Stude sedans seemed to have more problems with door alignment, panel fitment, etc. vs. the 1962 down models. Is there some truth to that or was someone trying to blow smoke up where the sun don't shine? I wondering about 4 door sedans here.

    Personally; I like the styling on the 1966 the best, but I would not be averse to a 1962, look at my nic.
    --------------------------------------

    Sold my 1962; Studeless at the moment

    Borrowed Bams50's sigline here:

    "Do they all not, by mere virtue of having survived as relics of a bygone era, amass a level of respect perhaps not accorded to them when they were new?"

  • #2
    Well sedan-wise the earlier cars had one piece door shells,
    as opposed to the later ones with separate window frames.
    Also shorter wheel bases.

    That said, I've never found the later ones to be especially loose or I'll fitting.
    At least not compared to K-Hawks.

    Of course a good 60's MoPar 4 door hardtop puts any late Stude to shame on
    body rigidity and fit.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by skyway View Post
      Well sedan-wise the earlier cars had one piece door shells,
      as opposed to the later ones with separate window frames.
      Also shorter wheel bases.

      That said, I've never found the later ones to be especially loose or I'll fitting.
      At least not compared to K-Hawks.

      Of course a good 60's MoPar 4 door hardtop puts any late Stude to shame on
      body rigidity and fit.
      The 1962 four door Y body has the 113" wheelbase; most 1959-61 sedans (2 or 4 door) used the 108" version.
      --------------------------------------

      Sold my 1962; Studeless at the moment

      Borrowed Bams50's sigline here:

      "Do they all not, by mere virtue of having survived as relics of a bygone era, amass a level of respect perhaps not accorded to them when they were new?"

      Comment


      • #4
        Perhaps the wheelbase is the answer here. Early Larks with the 108" wheelbase would be stiffer as opposed to the 113" & likewise the Hawk with the 120.5" wheelbase. Studebaker frames were designed at a time when it was thought for the frame to have a degree of flex when later bodies (including unibody cars) became stiffer to today when strength is important for the passenger area & "controlled crush zones" forward & rearward. One area where Studebaker could have made an improvement was the floor section where it joins the "A" pillar. The movement in this area coupled with its propensity to rust is especially noted on Champ trucks due to their not having the additional support from the cowl brace to frame. This area could have been strengthened by the use of an "L" shaped bracket that tied the "A" pillar mount to the inner rocker structure instead of depending on just the floor metal that is away from the "A" pillar base.

        On my 66 Daytona the "B" pillar is cracking at the belt area, an area where it becomes thinner for the slim post design and lacks any inner reinforcement that is common to vehicles today.
        59 Lark wagon, now V-8, H.D. auto!
        60 Lark convertible V-8 auto
        61 Champ 1/2 ton 4 speed
        62 Champ 3/4 ton 5 speed o/drive
        62 Champ 3/4 ton auto
        62 Daytona convertible V-8 4 speed & 62 Cruiser, auto.
        63 G.T. Hawk R-2,4 speed
        63 Avanti (2) R-1 auto
        64 Zip Van
        66 Daytona Sport Sedan(327)V-8 4 speed
        66 Cruiser V-8 auto

        Comment


        • #5
          A hard call to make as I m sure some would debate your question to death. If you are basing a buying decision continginent upon what year Lark types are better than what ever year don't even think about it. Just buy the most rust free one you can find and afford. They were all built strong enough to suit the engineers and most folks. I've owned a few of each type and as long as they weren't ate up by tin worms they were fine by my standards. Any and all ov'em. cheers jimmijim
          Last edited by jimmijim8; 06-18-2011, 02:51 AM.
          sigpicAnything worth doing deserves your best shot. Do it right the first time. When you're done you will know it. { I'm just the guy who thinks he knows everything, my buddy is the guy who knows everything.} cheers jimmijim*****SDC***** member

          Comment


          • #6
            Early Lark type 59 thru 62 have the Ultra-Vista type windshield first offered on later 1955 4 door sedans. 63 and up don't have it and the door window frames are bolt on.
            Originally posted by skyway View Post
            Well sedan-wise the earlier cars had one piece door shells,
            as opposed to the later ones with separate window frames.
            Also shorter wheel bases.

            That said, I've never found the later ones to be especially loose or I'll fitting.
            At least not compared to K-Hawks.

            Of course a good 60's MoPar 4 door hardtop puts any late Stude to shame on
            body rigidity and fit.
            sigpicAnything worth doing deserves your best shot. Do it right the first time. When you're done you will know it. { I'm just the guy who thinks he knows everything, my buddy is the guy who knows everything.} cheers jimmijim*****SDC***** member

            Comment


            • #7
              the door alignment was awful on my '62 Daytona FWIW...

              nate
              --
              55 Commander Starlight
              http://members.cox.net/njnagel

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by 1962larksedan View Post
                I read somewhere that the 1963+ Stude sedans seemed to have more problems with door alignment, panel fitment, etc. vs. the 1962 down models. Is there some truth to that or was someone trying to blow smoke up where the sun don't shine? I wondering about 4 door sedans here.

                Personally; I like the styling on the 1966 the best, but I would not be averse to a 1962, look at my nic.
                Having owned a '61 Cruiser and owning a '64 Daytona Wagonaire, bith 113-ich wheelbase, I found the Cruiser to be a much better assembled car, better fit of doors. Granted, the sliding roof Wagonaire may not be a fair comparison.
                Paul Johnson, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia.
                '64 Daytona Wagonaire, '64 Avanti R-1, Museum R-4 engine, '72 Gravely Model 430 with Onan engine

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by skyway View Post
                  Well sedan-wise the earlier cars had one piece door shells,
                  as opposed to the later ones with separate window frames.
                  Also shorter wheel bases.

                  That said, I've never found the later ones to be especially loose or I'll fitting.
                  At least not compared to K-Hawks.

                  Of course a good 60's MoPar 4 door hardtop puts any late Stude to shame on
                  body rigidity and fit.
                  Originally posted by Warren Webb View Post
                  Perhaps the wheelbase is the answer here. Early Larks with the 108" wheelbase would be stiffer as opposed to the 113" & likewise the Hawk with the 120.5" wheelbase. Studebaker frames were designed at a time when it was thought for the frame to have a degree of flex when later bodies (including unibody cars) became stiffer to today when strength is important for the passenger area & "controlled crush zones" forward & rearward. One area where Studebaker could have made an improvement was the floor section where it joins the "A" pillar. The movement in this area coupled with its propensity to rust is especially noted on Champ trucks due to their not having the additional support from the cowl brace to frame. This area could have been strengthened by the use of an "L" shaped bracket that tied the "A" pillar mount to the inner rocker structure instead of depending on just the floor metal that is away from the "A" pillar base.

                  On my 66 Daytona the "B" pillar is cracking at the belt area, an area where it becomes thinner for the slim post design and lacks any inner reinforcement that is common to vehicles today.
                  Originally posted by jimmijim8 View Post
                  A hard call to make as I m sure some would debate your question to death. If you are basing a buying decision continginent upon what year Lark types are better than what ever year don't even think about it. Just buy the most rust free one you can find and afford. They were all built strong enough to suit the engineers and most folks. I've owned a few of each type and as long as they weren't ate up by tin worms they were fine by my standards. Any and all ov'em. cheers jimmijim
                  Originally posted by jimmijim8 View Post
                  Early Lark type 59 thru 62 have the Ultra-Vista type windshield first offered on later 1955 4 door sedans. 63 and up don't have it and the door window frames are bolt on.
                  Originally posted by N8N View Post
                  the door alignment was awful on my '62 Daytona FWIW...

                  nate
                  Originally posted by 53k View Post
                  Having owned a '61 Cruiser and owning a '64 Daytona Wagonaire, bith 113-ich wheelbase, I found the Cruiser to be a much better assembled car, better fit of doors. Granted, the sliding roof Wagonaire may not be a fair comparison.
                  The common denominator here seems to be that the 1962 model was the last of the 'wraparound' windshield design: translation, the bugs were all pretty much worked out by then. For that matter; according to my Hollander Interchange Manual; all second series 1955-62 4 doors (including 1957-58 Packards) and the Lark based pickups all used the same front door shells.

                  In defense of N8N's Daytona: typically two (or 4) door hardtops and convertibles back then had more fitment issues vs. the pillared versions.

                  Significant rust is pretty much a non issue for me since I live in Arizona.
                  --------------------------------------

                  Sold my 1962; Studeless at the moment

                  Borrowed Bams50's sigline here:

                  "Do they all not, by mere virtue of having survived as relics of a bygone era, amass a level of respect perhaps not accorded to them when they were new?"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by 1962larksedan View Post
                    Significant rust is pretty much a non issue for me since I live in Arizona.
                    THAT would only be true IF the Car you end up purchasing has spent it's ENTIRE life in a very dry Southwestern location!
                    Those chances are getting a lot lower, of also finding exactly the year and model you like.

                    Everyone is entitled to their opinion and mine is; I like all 1954 thru 1966 Studebakers, except the 1962 Lark 4 Dr. & Wagon, mainly because of those funky looking rear doors with too large sized (rattling and leaking) windows and the weird bulging tail light pods on the wagons.
                    Oh yeah, also that multiple cubed (sectioned) Grille. The '63 gives the Car a wider, lower less vertical look.

                    In my opinion, you just can't compare a '62 to a '63, all they really share is the rear end, and it was even mildly improved on '63's and shows the Egbert prodding to update many things on the Cars and get rid of the ancient 1953 Doors and inside steel lower window frames.
                    Last edited by StudeRich; 06-18-2011, 01:05 PM.
                    StudeRich
                    Second Generation Stude Driver,
                    Proud '54 Starliner Owner

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      My '63 Wagonaire had perfect panel alignment and very little rattle (in spite of dry door seals). Like Jimmy sez, condition is of greater concern than model year. I do prefer the '63s, as you have a cleaner roofline and a full-flow block.
                      Andy
                      62 GT

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        X-Frame on a Wagonaire (and Convert) counts for a LOT!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I'm not a fan of the exposed door pillar of the 1962 and earlier 4-door cars, whereas the 1963 and later door post was concealed by the doors.
                          sigpic
                          In the middle of MinneSTUDEa.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Milaca View Post
                            I'm not a fan of the exposed door pillar of the 1962 and earlier 4-door cars, whereas the 1963 and later door post was concealed by the doors.
                            I think that you need to look a little more closely at a 1963 sedan. The door post is still visible. The lack of the heavy upper door sections is what makes the major difference in appearance.
                            Gary L.
                            Wappinger, NY

                            SDC member since 1968
                            Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by studegary View Post
                              I think that you need to look a little more closely at a 1963 sedan. The door post is still visible. The lack of the heavy upper door sections is what makes the major difference in appearance.
                              Looking at the lower portion of the doors on a 1962 or earlier, the side stainless steel trim that runs the length of the car has about a one inch long section attached to the center post being that the center post is visible between the front and rear doors.
                              sigpic
                              In the middle of MinneSTUDEa.

                              Comment

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