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Champ Challanges!

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  • Champ Challanges!

    Wow, Jeff! That is a bag of snakes. I remember putting a car V8 in a Transtar, with home-made mounts, and it turned out a lot better than that.

    The engine sits too high, and too far forward, for one thing.

    I remember you having had clutch and starter troubles, and there seems to me there's ONE good solution. Find yourself a rust-bucket V8 Champ truck to use as a donor. The parts you need are not subject to instant destruction by rust, like the body parts are.

    You need flywheel, bellhousing, clutch linkage and clutch, starter, motor and tranny mounts, plus other odds and ends, too, I'm sure. A parts truck would be the answer. Can't be that hard to find. As long as you are going to replace the clutch, anyway, use a 10 or 11 inch Chevy diaphragm clutch. Pedal pressure hold the clutch in the released position, as in waiting for the light to change, is MUCH less, and the mod makes for a much nicer-driving vehicle. I did this with my old Champ, and it was well worth the trouble. You will have to go with a modified throwout bearing, or maybe the front bearing retainer on the tranny, but it's not that difficult, and the results are worth it. Your left leg will thank you! The TRUCK bellhousing has ample room to accomodate the more square-shouldered diaphragm pressure plate.

    There's simply no point in trying to make the current arrangement any better; it's ALL wrong. Even if you did make mounts that work, you have an undersize clutch, and the wrong type of starter, etc., just too much non-standard stuff to be comfortable with. Non-standard stuff, withing limits, is fine, provided one KNOWS what's there, and provided the non-standard parts are there for a purpose, like to improve performance or comfort.

    I wouldn't waste time using V8 car parts, even late-model Stude with a bigger clutch. You are still faced with the fact that Stude never made mounts or linkage to use the V8 car tranny and bellhousing in a Champ, so fabricating your own would still be required. If you find a parts-donor truck, all the engineering is done for you. There's got to be some rust-belt Champs just itchin' to donate their organs.

    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands
    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

  • #2
    Champ Challanges!

    As many of you know I've had more than my share of transmission problems
    with my Champ over the years, and finally decided to bite the bullet,
    take this thing apart and put it back together as right as I can.

    This truck was originally a six and was converted to a V8 sometime in
    it's history, and whoever did it must have read how it should be done
    and was determined to do it as far from that as he could.

    The bellhousing was never aligned (and has no dowel pins), the clutch pivot and bellhousing mounts were creatively engineered, as were the motor mounts.

    I don't have a proper V8 Champ bellhousing, and will have to make due with what I've got, but that shouldn't stop me from getting things where they are supposed to go and lined up properly.

    If you guys would take a look at these pictures, I'm open to suggestions!

    http://s132.photobucket.com/albums/q...amp%20project/

    A few details. The truck is a 1960 Champ with a 1956 vintage 289, and a early V8 T86 transmission, mounted to a 6V bellhousing (they are a bit smaller, as I found out the hard way).

    And no, putting a soft block Chevy is NOT the answer! The engine is healthy and strong with great oil pressure. However today I popped out the freeze plugs and rear block drains and it was just amazing all the crud that was in that block!

    Thanks!

    Jeff DeWitt
    Jeff DeWitt
    http://carolinastudes.net

    Comment


    • #3
      Gord, that's good advice and no doubt that is the right way to do it but... money is a serious issue here, and we are a long way from the rust belt.

      I really need to make do as best I can with what I've got, and while I've had lots of problems I HAVE put about 20,000 miles on that truck. The smaller clutch and 6v setup hasn't really been much of a problem once I realized that's what I had, and the faster speed of the 6v starter is a plus.

      Thanks for confirming what I've suspected, that the engine sat up too high and too far forward. I think what I'm really trying to figure out now is the best way to put the engine and transmission where they are supposed to be.

      Thanks!

      Jeff DeWitt
      Jeff DeWitt
      http://carolinastudes.net

      Comment


      • #4
        Jeff - When I was rebuilding my '62 V8 Champ, and having the driven plate reskinned and clutch resurfaced, I had him take out ever other spring in the clutch. Since I wasn't going to be towing or hauling more than a bed-load at a time, it's been tons easier on the leg and I've put many happy miles on it.


        Western Washington, USA

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks Tom.

          Yes the clutch is a bit heavy, but that isn't really a problem. What I really need to do is get the engine and tranny located properly. I really don't want to go replacing clutch components at this point anyway because that was done the last time it was apart and the new clutch has about a mile on it!

          Jeff DeWitt
          Jeff DeWitt
          http://carolinastudes.net

          Comment


          • #6
            OK guys,

            One of the answers I've gotten tells me the engine has the wrong motor mount brackets (big surprise!), and from the picture Paul sent it looks like the proper bracket is not only taller but considerably more substantial than the ones I've got.

            Would any of you guys have a set of motor mounts p/n's 1692174 and 1692175?

            Thanks,

            Jeff DeWitt
            Jeff DeWitt
            http://carolinastudes.net

            Comment


            • #7
              Yikes...
              Make sure you put in a new reach rod....
              Jeff[8D]
              HTIH (Hope The Info Helps)

              Jeff


              Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please. Mark Twain



              Note: SDC# 070190 (and earlier...)

              Comment


              • #8
                Oh yeah, in addition to the motor mount brackets (which should be the same from any V8 truck), anyone have a reach rod? The book says that can be straightened but I'm kind of nervous about that. This is the rod that attaches to the arm coming from the steering box.

                Thanks!

                Jeff DeWitt
                Jeff DeWitt
                http://carolinastudes.net

                Comment


                • #9
                  HOLY SMOKES, Jeff!!![:0] Had you not showed us photos, I don't think I could have grasped the situation thru words alone!!!

                  A bit of caution is needed here. And I speak from painful experience - believe me.[V] Not ANY V8 truck mounts will do! I ain't got time to retell the whole story of how I learnt this lesson, but it was a journey of frustration, I assure you!
                  With the intro of the Champ, the 1/2ton - 3/4 ton trucks got their V8s relocated on the frame. This eliminates the use of earlier V8 engine mount brackets (both front and rear) from the possiblities that you can choose from.
                  Of course, to USE the proper rear mounts, you HAVE to have a truck bellhousing - no two ways about it. Since the massive rear mount brackets literally key into the B/H, there's no way to "fudge it" with a car type B/H.

                  I know I have a truck B/H here as well as a set of rear mount brackets - not so sure about the front brackets, but if I had them, you'd still need the metal/rubber mount donuts to use in concert with the proper mount brackets, front and rear. Got a truck flywheel as well. E-mail me if you're interested and we'll work something out.

                  Miscreant adrift in
                  the BerStuda Triangle


                  1957 Transtar 1/2ton
                  1960 Larkvertible V8
                  1958 Provincial wagon
                  1953 Commander coupe

                  No deceptive flags to prove I'm patriotic - no biblical BS to impress - just ME and Studebakers - as it should be.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Time for an update.

                    I've been trying to round up parts and doing a lot of cleaning (amazing how much crud can get on a truck in about half a century!).

                    Spent a lot of time with Simple Green, a hose, scrapers, brushes and sandpaper but... yesterday went to Northern Tool and bought a really simple sandblasting tool for all of $20.

                    http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/w...70_23137_23137

                    So I got this done in a few hours this weekend...







                    I keep finding things that need to be welded, the hinge brackets, some floor repair, rocker panels that need to be replaced... any comments on this welder?

                    http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/w...2691_200332691

                    Thanks!

                    Jeff DeWitt



                    Jeff DeWitt
                    http://carolinastudes.net

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      For those who have been following this saga...

                      The front clip is off my Champ and the front part of the frame and the parts of the firewall that are behind the fenders have been sandblasted and painted with POR 15.

                      Northern Tool has a siphon type sandblaster that sells for $19.99 and works great, you have to have a good compressor though!

                      I've gotten what I believe to be the correct motor mount brackets and am working on getting the correct bellhousing and brackets.

                      I'm also still looking for a drag link to replace my bent one and a pair of hinge mounts.

                      Some idiot PO (I think a different idiot PO than the one who did the conversion) cut the hinge mounts off the body, so if anyone has a Champ or early Lark parts car and you could spare those brackets I'd appreciate it.

                      Here are some pictures.





                      Next weekend I plan on painting the firewall and inner fenders, then it's time to start putting things back together again.

                      Jeff DeWitt
                      Jeff DeWitt
                      http://carolinastudes.net

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Looking great, Jeff!
                        That little blaster looks like a handy tool for tight spots.
                        Good luch with the project!

                        Western Washington, USA

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Glad you bought that truck from me, because N8 just missed it. As anal as he is, he be shopping for all the correct nuts and bolts well in the the next decade. BTW, glad to see the body is as decent as it is for a Champ, but the previous owner sure cut some corners to keep it running.

                          JDP/Maryland
                          64 Daytona HT/R2 clone
                          64 GT R2
                          63 GT R2
                          63 Lark 2 door
                          59 3E truck
                          58 Starlight
                          52 & 53 Starliner
                          51 Commander

                          JDP Maryland

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            JP, if there was any corner that guy DIDN'T cut I haven't found it! It's amazing it worked as well as it did, it was more than a bit of a challenge but I've put almost 20,000 miles on the thing.

                            I trust the next 20,000 miles will be a LOT less troublesome.

                            Jeff DeWitt
                            Jeff DeWitt
                            http://carolinastudes.net

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              quote:Originally posted by tomnoller

                              Looking great, Jeff!
                              That little blaster looks like a handy tool for tight spots.
                              Good luch with the project!

                              Western Washington, USA
                              Thanks Tom,

                              This is the blaster, I don't know when I've been so impressed with a cheap tool.

                              http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/w...ssearch=155560

                              Jeff DeWitt
                              Jeff DeWitt
                              http://carolinastudes.net

                              Comment

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