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Astro Van Power Steering in a 54 Wagon

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  • Steering: Astro Van Power Steering in a 54 Wagon

    Back in 07-11 Bob Andrews and 1962larksedan had a series of threads about modern power steering boxs for Studes.
    Paul Keller mentioned a friend who installed an Astro van box in a 54 Wagon but didn't have a lot of info on it.
    I was at a car show in Santa Maria, Ca on Saturday 9-22-12 and found the only Stude there. It was the 54 Wagon that Paul mentioned.
    The guy just finished it a month or so ago and has put over 1500 miles on it so far. He's heading to Pleasanton soon in it.
    He drives the snot out of the cars he builds so he builds them safe, stout and correctly. He's built quite a few really fine cars and has a couple other Studes in the works. This one is a beautfully done, completely finished car. Nothing halfassed. He said that he likes to keep it as simple as possible.
    He installed an Astro van P S box turned 90 degrees with a bracket off the stock steering box location and a pitman arm he built. Didn't cut or modify the frame. He modified the Stude drag link at the pitman arm end. And rebuilt the stock Stude suspension.
    He is a S D C member but does not get on the board.
    He agreed to let me take pictures, remove wheels, lift the car, anything to see how he did the swap.
    He didn't take pictures or make sketches of the brackets during the build. He didn't realize the importance of what he was doing.
    I'm not a photographer and don't know doo doo about posting pictures, so I need to figure out how or find someone who does know how.
    I can measure, and provide detailed drawings of the brackets.
    I'll contact him to arrange for pictures and other information.
    He also has the stock Stude front seat in it with Chevy full electric adjust under it. Forward, back, up, down and I think tilt, pretty much a bolt in. I'll get info on that also.
    South Lompoc Studebaker

  • #2
    oh ya, photos of this swap is a must. can't wait to see them and get some more info on this swap. hopefully, we will not have to wait too long. Did he keep the stock column? ps, include some photos of the car too! Thanks, Junior
    sigpic
    1954 C5 Hamilton car.

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    • #3
      The Astro gear is part of the Saginaw 800 series family but has reverse rotation---------like a 1951-85 Stude car/Avanti unit.
      --------------------------------------

      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
        The car is a mild custom. Chevy v8, ? automatic, late model steering column, Ford rearend[has 2 3/4" brake shoes ?]
        There are two Borgeson u-joints in the column.
        I'll get all the particulars when I talk to the guy. Nice guy and ready to give info.
        Like I said, I'm not a photographer but I'll do my best.
        From research I did last night on the steering box, Jeep people use it pretty much the same way as in a Stude.[turned 90 degree]
        I think it is an 87-95 2wd Astro van box.
        He used 6 cyl Stude motor mounts swapped side to side for the Chev V8 and had to move the drag link slightly for clearance.
        Chev power steering pump. 3 turns lock to lock.
        South Lompoc Studebaker

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        • #5
          Would be nice to get him on the forum, would have a lot to offer.
          Don Wilson, Centralia, WA

          40 Champion 4 door*
          50 Champion 2 door*
          53 Commander K Auto*
          53 Commander K overdrive*
          55 President Speedster
          62 GT 4Speed*
          63 Avanti R1*
          64 Champ 1/2 ton

          * Formerly owned

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          • #6
            Yeah, I'll see what he says when I talk to him.
            South Lompoc Studebaker

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            • #7
              Really looking forward to this as I am about to get started on a '54 wagon.

              Pat
              Pat Dilling
              Olivehurst, CA
              Custom '53 Starlight aka STU COOL


              LS1 Engine Swap Journal: http://www.hotrodders.com/forum/jour...ournalid=33611

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              • #8
                Another cool thing I saw on the car.
                As I said, it's a Chevy V8,
                but he bolted on stock Stude valve covers.
                He used the 4 stock Chevy studs that line up with the holes in the Stude covers.
                Extented the studs and used the Stude rubber grommets/washers with stainless washers and acorn nuts.
                I don't know if he used Stude or Chevy gaskets. We got interrupted while he was explaining.
                Simple, clean, beautiful. This is the way he thinks and builds.
                South Lompoc Studebaker

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                • #9
                  Bump to top.
                  --------------------------------------

                  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
                    Is he in Lompoc or Santa Maria? We've got SilverHawkDan in Santa Maria. He takes good pictures. And I'm in Santa Maria, too. Briefly. Also, sbca96 Tom is in Santa Barbara. Good pictures from him as well.
                    KURTRUK
                    (read it backwards)




                    Nothing is politically right which is morally wrong. -A. Lincoln

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                    • #11
                      He is in nipomo, i sold him the car a couple of years ago as a project and still cant believe how nice it turned out! Nice!!!
                      Tom McCaffrey

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                      • #12
                        After I figured out what he had done with the steering box, the first thing I asked him was to get on the site and post pictures and info.
                        As I said, he does not get on the site and didn't seem interested in posting but was free with information and was ready to show and provide info on the swap.
                        I haven't had a chance to call him[maintenance on my 55] but will call asap.
                        If someone else wants to contact and do pictures I'll do whatever I can to help.
                        South Lompoc Studebaker

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                        • #13
                          Aloha:Would that work with standard shift(3 on the tree---OD) 55Commander cp V8?---Jim Ayling---Honolulu

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by 55 56 PREZ 4D View Post
                            Another cool thing I saw on the car.
                            As I said, it's a Chevy V8,
                            but he bolted on stock Stude valve covers.
                            He used the 4 stock Chevy studs that line up with the holes in the Stude covers.
                            Extented the studs and used the Stude rubber grommets/washers with stainless washers and acorn nuts.
                            I don't know if he used Stude or Chevy gaskets. We got interrupted while he was explaining.
                            Simple, clean, beautiful. This is the way he thinks and builds.
                            That's the same plan I have for the 4.3 V6 I plan to install in my Lark!
                            ~Matt Connor
                            '59 Lark 2-door

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              We're getting OT here, but Studebakers are somewhat metaphysical anyway
                              As I said, it's a Chevy V8, but he bolted on stock Stude valve covers. . . . . Simple, clean, beautiful. This is the way he thinks and builds.
                              His car, his build, his money and your positive opinion of it - all perfectly valid.

                              However, equally valid, some of us wrestle with the concept of das ding an sich and want it to be what it appears to be. Since Studebaker put different decals on the McKinnon engines, were the engines less Chevrolet? If a builder puts Studebaker rocker covers on a Chevrolet V8, does that make it more Studebaker?

                              jack vines
                              PackardV8

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