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Speedster paint questions

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  • Paint: Speedster paint questions

    I have a Sunvalley Yellow/Hialeah Green Speedster being repainted and have 3 areas that I'm not sure if they should be yellow or green.
    The first area is the 1/2" strip between stainless trim at the top of the windshield and the roof drip molding. Yellow or green?
    The second area is the 3/4" inch strip between the rear quarter window stainless trim and the roof drip molding. On the right side of my car it is green on the left side it's yellow. ????? What is correct?
    The last area is at the bottom of the roof green as it meets the fender. Does the green stop at the fender curve or does the green continue to the fender filler piece?

  • #2
    Some of the Color break questions may differ is to whether this is a Los Angeles (Vernon) Assembled Car, Canada or South Bend.

    Click image for larger version

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    This is the South Bend Paint scheme.

    Here is a President Hardtop with a similar Paint scheme to a L.A. Speedster.
    Click image for larger version

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    StudeRich
    Second Generation Stude Driver,
    Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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    • #3
      I'm working on a Los Angeles built Speedster. I appreciate the response but the pictures you provided don't show the areas that I'm concerned about.

      Comment


      • #4
        This is how mine was painted but it might not be exactly as original.
        If you want more pictures let me know
        Attached Files

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        • #5
          I would suspect that sufficient ambiguity exists that the best color breaks would be those that please you most. I have yet to see a judge at an international meet deduct a point because the paint break was off by an inch. And, given that there could be differences between South Bend, Hamilton and Vernon production, which can you most live with?
          "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

          Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
          Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
          sigpic'33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight, '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée"

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          • #6
            Originally posted by rockne10 View Post
            I would suspect that sufficient ambiguity exists that the best color breaks would be those that please you most. I have yet to see a judge at an international meet deduct a point because the paint break was off by an inch. And, given that there could be differences between South Bend, Hamilton and Vernon production, which can you most live with?
            I know that incorrect paintline breaks on 1953-1954 C/Ks have resulted in points deductions at SDC International Meets.

            I think that your best bet to check on this would be factory literature/pictures and original paint cars (especially Vernon [LA] cars).

            When all else fails, look at how the factory would probably do it when the car was painted before any trim was placed on the body.
            Last edited by studegary; 06-05-2014, 01:10 PM. Reason: missing a (again -weak finger)
            Gary L.
            Wappinger, NY

            SDC member since 1968
            Studebaker enthusiast much longer

            Comment


            • #7
              I have a South Bend Speedster. The green at the top of the windshield was masked from the top corner of the door opening to the corner of the windshield opening. When assembled all you see is green above the windshield. The green on the rear quarter goes out to the filler piece.
              Klif
              55 Speedster/Street Machine
              63 Avanti R2
              64 Convertible R1

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by ellagee View Post
                I have a Sunvalley Yellow/Hialeah Green Speedster being repainted and have 3 areas that I'm not sure if they should be yellow or green.
                The first area is the 1/2" strip between stainless trim at the top of the windshield and the roof drip molding. Yellow or green?
                The second area is the 3/4" inch strip between the rear quarter window stainless trim and the roof drip molding. On the right side of my car it is green on the left side it's yellow. ????? What is correct?
                The last area is at the bottom of the roof green as it meets the fender. Does the green stop at the fender curve or does the green continue to the fender filler piece?
                Hi Ellagee,
                Okay, so this answer comes with a preface about differences in Painting methods between SB vs LA Speedsters, and it can get complicated.

                *MUST READ CAVEAT*: The following is only observations and recommendations based upon what is judged to be known Factory original paint still on Speedster survivors and the knowledge handed down from Speedster enthusiasts I've interviewed, such as Rene Harger. Although the following can be considered relatively reliable, debate and factual differences is very possible on some things, especially because minor details about paint masking lines could vary a bit from day to day, week to week based on workers on the paint/masking line in the factory (that decide to do something a little different because it's easier for him/her) and/or their immediate supervisors that may or may not keep consistency a priority.

                1) Broadly speaking, for most all color combos (with "possible" exception of yellow green, see below) here's the factory differences:

                1A)South Bend painted the whole body (inside and out) the mid-level color first, followed by masking and painting of the upper and lower colors. For example lets use the pink and grey color combo. The whole body (inside and out) was painted coraltone pink, then masked off to paint the upper and lower Pimlico metallic gray.
                --The result: Pink engine bay, Pink trunk, pink under seats and under panels inside.

                1B) Los Angeles painted the Lower body color first, followed by the mid-level (and upper-level if different). For example using the pink and grey combo: the Pimlico metallic gray was painted over the whole body, inside and out, and the masked for the mid-level +/- upper.
                --The result: Grey engine bay, Grey trunk, grey under seats and under panels inside, and grey door jambs.

                LA painting scheme is the most notable, and most often changed by restorers/paintshops, when it comes to the engine bay and trunk. Why? Because the SB way is easier to mask off and paint. And 2) its because the engine bay & trunk is painted the lower color BUT it's immediately adjacent to the mid-level color. So at the interfaces along the front fenders of the hood, and the rear fenders along the trunk line, when you open those compartments your color senses are "hit" unexpectedly with what most think are the wrong colors -because you expect the color on the fender to continue into the engine/trunk, etc.

                2) Caveat -yellow/green combo
                So while there is (and I have) ample picture evidence of the above paint scheme differences that occurred between the factories for most colors (the pink/greys, black/whites, grey/whites), I do not have any evidence to show paint scheme differences between factories for the yellow/green color combo -which for the most part is due to the limited yellow-green survivors, WITH original paint from LA factory. Of the half dozen yellow-green speedster survivors I have listed from LA, only one that is more rust than anything, and also lacks engine/trunk pictures, would have helped to solve this question if it was in better condition.
                But as far as I've gathered, yellow-green speedsters were painted the SAME way at both factories. Yellow painted first followed by green, so that the engine bay and trunk are yellow like the mid-level color.

                Okay, now that that's been said, for historical and authenticity sake. Let's discuss paint lines and where they are often done wrong during restoration. As we discuss this, you have to think like a painter, someone who wants to do minimal work and cost to get the job done but still look good.

                Let's use the yellow/green paint scheme so that we can have colors to describe things -FYI if LA painted car, the masking lines will be similar, just painted per scheme described above.
                So, the whole body is painted yellow. So we only need to mask off the roof and lower body to apply the green paint.
                Upper-level: The masking line primarily uses trim. Along the roof's rain gutter there is stainless steel trim -the factory used this for the FORWARD and most of the SIDE edges- meaning they masked off along that edge, painted, and then put the trim on afterwards to cover it up. The REAR edge is established under the wide roof molding, extending from the rear fender, top molding on the driver side to the rear fender, top molding on the passenger side. Those are easy areas.
                Where restorers (and especially body shops -that get stripped cars so they don't know where original paint line was) get the masking line wrong, is that little area between the rain gutter trim and the rear molding. It's a few inches gap and not clear based on the existing body lines. The proper masking line at that spot is to follow the rain gutter trim straight down along a brazed body seam to the "T" insert (that separates the body from the rear fender, next to the rear window), and proceed under the "T" to the rear and under the chrome & S/S trim that lines the top of the rear fender -thus connecting the masking line from the front/side to the rear masking line. [To clear up possible confusion, the "T" strip is painted Mid-level color, that's why I said the upper-level color masking line goes "under" the "T" strip.] [How it's done wrong: at the base of the roof where rain gutter stops, restorers have stopped and cut across to rear molding, instead of going out to the "T".]
                Lower-level: This masking line primarily uses the "butter knife" side molding. Simply use the butter-knife molding bolt holes as the masking line (except at the rear). At the front, the masking line needs to come out in line with the tip of the front fender, side molding spear, and then follow down along the head light and at the 6:00 position under the headlight, drop down under the front grill chrome. At the rear of the butter-knife molding the bolt holes do not line up with where the masking line needs to exit out, it needs to be higher. So at the rear, under that last section of butter-knife molding come up a bit so that the masking line will exit in-line with the crease line of the side molding and then go straight back to the rear tail light.

                -Masking line around the front, rear, and bottom edges of doors: wrap the lower-level paint around the edge and stop where the outer-door skin edge comes to an end.
                -Front scoop: painted green. Needs to match the adjoining lower front fender.
                -Rear valence: Painted yellow. (NOT green -seen this mistake)
                -Rear body piece between rear trunk and rear bumper: yellow (NOT green -seen this mistake)

                ANSWER TO YOUR QUESTION: If you were able to follow along with the descriptions of the paint lines, you'll find that:
                "The first area is the 1/2" strip between stainless trim at the top of the windshield and the roof drip molding. Yellow or green?" -YELLOW
                "The second area is the 3/4" inch strip between the rear quarter window stainless trim and the roof drip molding. On the right side of my car it is green on the left side it's yellow. ????? What is correct?" - YELLOW
                "The last area is at the bottom of the roof green as it meets the fender. Does the green stop at the fender curve or does the green continue to the fender filler piece?" -GREEN continues from base of roof about inch or so to the "T" insert

                !!!SEE PICTURES!!!!!!
                -2 photos, black/white combos of rear window, show Upper-level paint line at near rear rain gutter.
                -Pink/grey restored speedster is LA FACTORY, showing paint differences, notably for engine bay, trunk, door james.
                -White/Black unrestored speedester is LA FACTORY, again showing paint differences.
                -White/grey stuck in forest/grass, shows paint line to follow for rear quarter panel -note masking line follows trim holes and then moves up higher at very end of butter-knife molding to match up with trim.

                >If unclear, and it's easy to be confused, Private message me.

                SB and LA Speedster Painting Tip: The cardboard-type seat backing material for the rear seat, that faces into the trunk, is colored the same color as the trunk, i.e. yellow, pink, white, black, or grey. So be sure to paint that along with whatever color you are doing the trunk. This was UNIQUE to Speedsters, to match it. Other models simply used a backerboard that was plain. For the Speedster only, replacements in the parts catalog were ordered by color to match the trunk.

                Painting tips for "most" LA speedsters, especially if original paint indicates the paint scheme is as described above (non-yellow/green colors only!!). Engine bay and trunk and interior (to include door/window jams) are painted lower-level color. When ready to do Mid-level color painting, mask off as follows:
                Engine bay: The "lower" parts will be same as lower body panel colors, so these need to be masked off. On the sides, mask off where the fender wraps over and into engine bay and then stops (i.e. just below the margin where the bottom edge of the hood rests when closed); i.e the margin on the side that has the hood bumpers will be mid-level colors, and just below that where outside fender sheet metal stops and inner engine bay sheet metal starts is where the lower-body color should begin). The rear engine bay: Mask off where fire wall comes out to a "ledge," just below where body tags are located. This firewall area that includes the coil, wiper motor, body tag, will be painted mid-level color extending out to the edge of the "ledge that runs the length from right to left. Under the ledge is lower-level body color, the top of the ledge and up to the windshield is mid-level color.
                Trunk: The lower-level color should be brought up to the inner edge of the weatherstripping channel and stop. The top of the weatherstripping channel will be mid-level color.
                Wheel rim colors: Most of the colors combos, matched the wheel rim to the mid-level color (vs SB that matched it to the lower-level color).
                Attached Files
                Last edited by 55studeman; 07-05-2014, 04:14 PM. Reason: clarified some info
                Best Regards,
                Eric West
                "The Speedster Kid"
                Sunny Northern California
                Where the roads don't freeze over and the heat doesn't kill you.
                And an open road is yours to have -only during non-commute rush hours 9am-4pm and 7pm to 7am (Ha, ha, ha)
                55 Speedster "Lemon/Lime" (Beautiful)
                55 President State Sedan (Rusty original, but runs great and reliable)

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                • #9
                  Eric,

                  It is very nice to see your response to this thread. Hopefully life has slowed down a little for you?

                  Charlie D.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Forget the paint line, just get the checkered round 1/4 Panel emblems clocked right!
                    I see the Black and White one is wrong.
                    StudeRich
                    Second Generation Stude Driver,
                    Proud '54 Starliner Owner

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      55studeman posted an excellent overview of '55 President Speedster factory painting operations. We must remember though, Studebaker tended to 'vary' their specs and procedures at times. For example, my own late production Speedster (all Velvet Black exterior) left the factory with a semi-gloss gray (Greige?) trunk compartment, with Pimlico Gray trunk compartment seat backrest finish panel.

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                      • #12
                        Eric
                        All I can say is "WOW"
                        This kind of posting is very detailed and will be appreciated by future Speedster owners.
                        Great job!
                        Robert Kapteyn

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