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Painting a 1922 Studebaker

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  • Paint: Painting a 1922 Studebaker

    I ended up with a 1922 Studebaker in my garage, when the neighbor drove it in. It's in remarkably good shape (however, I haven't seen many old cars, but the fact that it was driven in seems to hold promise). There seems to be one item of immediate importance. There's some spots where someone started to prep the body for painting because the old paint was sanded off, and there's some surface rust there and I need to address that sooner than later.

    The question:
    Does anyone know of any guide anywhere of the proper way to restore an older car? There's just so much to do, I don't know the best place to start.

  • #2
    Welcome to the forum, Brian! Perhaps you found us by doing an internet search. Or could it be that you already knew about the STUDEBAKER DRIVERS CLUB? (AKA...SDC.) The SDC is one of the largest auto clubs in the world, dedicated to a single manufacturer. Even so, the number that frequents our internet forum, is comparatively small. Unfortunately, you posted on a Saturday, when the few of us that populate the forum, are often out, engaged in our "weekend" activities. So, I ask that you will be patient, and as folks return home, or, like me, wander inside to escape the heat, they will check in on the forum and respond to your thread.

    As a group, the folks on this forum are truly international, with members and contributors from many nations. While we all have varying levels of experience and knowledge, it will take you a while to assign credibility to the contributions and opinions to the names of various contributors. For early automobiles, such as yours, the one member of this forum that comes to mind is "studebaker wheel" (Richard Quinn). If and when he sees your thread, hopefully, he will provide you some detailed information about the car.

    I have spent many years wishing for a pre-war vehicle to come my way, at the right time, and the right price. So far, no luck. So, I'm not going to blather away giving you recommendations about a car I know little about. However, except to say, that the era of Studebaker your car represents, is from a time that Studebaker was one of the "higher-end" vehicles of the times. What will help, is for you to post some pictures, so we can know a little more of what you have. I'm not sure, but I believe by 1922, there were roadsters, side curtain touring, enclosed four-door, Special Six, and Lite Six, models offered. By that time, I think solid steel wheels, and wooden spoke wheels were part of the mix.

    As far as a little rust goes, even a rattle can of primer, probably wouldn't hurt, for temporary protection until serious work begins. I'm thinking that in 1922, there may have still been a substantial amount of wood framing for body panels. If so, a close inspection of the wood needs to be done. Restoring the wooden coach framing components, is an entirely separate specialized craft, of which I have zero experience.

    Take some pictures, and post them. We really love pics. Surely, as others straggle in and take a peek at the forum, you will get some useful feedback.
    John Clary
    Greer, SC

    SDC member since 1975

    Comment


    • #3
      Well...the forum is slow, even for a weekend. Then it finally dawned on me...starting tomorrow, is our "Big Gathering of the Year! The SDC International Meet in Warwick, Rhode Island, June 26 - July 2. Many folks, who might otherwise be hanging out, monitoring the forum, are making their way to the meet, already there, or taking care of those last minute details before launching on the journey.

      So, don't give up. Check back, and hopefully, someone will post some meaningful comments for you, although a little later than usual.
      John Clary
      Greer, SC

      SDC member since 1975

      Comment


      • #4
        Those cars were made with pretty substantial high grade virgin steel. My '33 is a true survivor and, for the twenty-five years I've had it, I occasionally wipe the bare steel with an oily rag, and have detected no additional deterioration in the past quarter century.
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ID:	1707469 Of course, it doesn't sit out in the weather, and has only occasionally been caught in the rain. With a survivor, once you start priming, where do you stop?

        With a Studebaker that old you would be well advised to join the Antique Studebaker Club, catering to pre-war vehicle owners.

        http://www.theantiquestudebakerclub.com/
        "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.
        '33 Rockne 10,
        '51 Commander Starlight,
        '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée",
        '56 Sky Hawk

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        • #5
          The first, most important thing for you to do: Resist the temptation to do a complete frame off restoration.
          Do not listen to anyone who tells you to tear the car down. To rebuild the whole thing.
          You've given just enough information to know that the car is somewhat driveable.
          That is a very great advantage to you.
          Keep it that way. You have an elephant in your garage, you have to eat it one bite at a time.
          One system at a time.
          Make it so it stops safely. [brakes]
          Starts and runs safely. [engine, cooling system, electrical system, fuel system]
          Then pretty it up. [upholstery, paint, plating]
          Yes, there is much to do, and there are sites with much information. Just start stolling thru restoration sites to start.
          Goggle car restoration, then car restoration shops, some of those have incredible amounts of information, car magazine articles.
          Now PLEASE provide more information. Pictures, we like pictures. How did you find this jewel ?
          South Lompoc Studebaker

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by jclary View Post
            Well...the forum is slow, even for a weekend. Then it finally dawned on me...starting tomorrow, is our "Big Gathering of the Year! The SDC International Meet in Warwick, Rhode Island, June 26 - July 2. Many folks, who might otherwise be hanging out, monitoring the forum, are making their way to the meet, already there, or taking care of those last minute details before launching on the journey.

            So, don't give up. Check back, and hopefully, someone will post some meaningful comments for you, although a little later than usual.
            Hey...I know I can sometimes be a bit slow...But...realizing that you are in New Hampshire, you have one of those rare opportunities of a very convenient trip distance to one of our International Meets. Seeing that, there is hardly anywhere in New Hampshire that you couldn't launch a "day-trip" to Warwick Rhode Island from. I don't know what your profession, or work situation is, but if you could work it out...at least for one day this week, a visit to the gathering in Warwick could be an eye opening experience to get a handle on the resources, scope, and history of these wonderful automobiles. While there, it is likely you could meet new friends for the rest of your life. Gain insight, and pick up literature, and perhaps, a few valuable parts rarely seen at any other event.

            If you can, make an effort to get there. I was a club member for about a decade before getting to attend one of the big gatherings. And, I still had to drive over six hundred miles to get there.
            John Clary
            Greer, SC

            SDC member since 1975

            Comment


            • #7
              I've seen a lot of car projects come up on craigslist or Fleabay simply because someone thought they could do a 'frame-off' and bit off more than they could chew.
              with this car, I think I'd start with preservation, then decide later for what level of restoration to do.

              BTW Rattle can primer seems to allow rust to creep up under there. I've gone to using oxide primers or epoxy primers. they seem to last longer.
              Last edited by Mrs K Corbin; 06-27-2016, 06:19 AM.

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              • #8
                I totally agree with all the above.
                Just start by lubricating all the moving parts, then do any needed maintenance, such as brake adjustments and new linings if needed.

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                • #9
                  hello, please excuse the slow replay, but between life and the kiddos, the toddlers take up my free time. Now back to the car.

                  Now to answer questions:
                  Firstly, I found the Studebaker Drivers Club through the Internet. It seemed that due to the age of the car, it would be best to find enthusiasts or a group with strong opinions.

                  Secondly, how I ended up with the car. The 80 year-old-neighbor drove it into my barn and said "I don't feel like a lifetime commitment; it goes with the house", and asked for a cheque. I am restoring an old victorian house, and there is a picture of the house from 1930-ish with this car in front of it. I actually believe that it's the same car from the picture because I roughly know the ownership history.

                  Thirdly, below are pictures of the car. It's blue: it's weird. However, looking at where it was sanded I believe that was originally black. The major areas of rust are on the bonnet and around the windows. The car is mechanically sound. I checked the brakes, parking brake (I adjusted it), etc, etc, so it won't kill the driver. The carburetor leaks into the bucket because I believe that some seals are bad from ethanol-based petrol, so it will need to be rebuilt. I have access to non-ethanol petrol, but I haven't bothered to drain the tank and look yet. Due to the simplicity, I could get it to fired right up (some yahoo did a real job on the electrical harness. I fixed as much as I could).

                  My ultimate goal is to get the car to survive until I have time to look at it carefully.




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                  • #10
                    sweet score that stude is! looking at the photos, I'd just be tempted to hit those bare spots with an oil as rockne10 suggested and keep the car in the garage nice and dry until you figure out what to do with it. I'm a typically a hot rodder, but this car looks to be so complete and intact I'd just make it safe and run it the way it is as a survivor. Looks like a ton of fun sitting there. cheers, Junior
                    sigpic
                    1954 C5 Hamilton car.

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                    • #11
                      I would touch up the bare spots on the blue paint, and at some point give it a good paint job. Since it's already been repainted you won't do any harm to originality.
                      I sure wouldn't touch that nice looking interior, and the peeling paint on the engine is fine for now also. Drive it and have fun.

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                      • #12
                        Just hope you don't run it with that bucket in there.... That.... Could be a problem.

                        One last piece of advice, keep a fire extinguisher handy as well. I've needed one and didn't have it. nearly lost a stude that way.

                        Wet blanket saved the day.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Mrs K Corbin View Post
                          One last piece of advice, keep a fire extinguisher handy as well. I've needed one and didn't have it. nearly lost a stude that way.
                          yes, that's a dubious article, the bucket. I will remove it before it gets any real road time. I also have a haylon extinguisher that is currently within arms reach of the car.

                          Thank you to everyone for the comments.

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                          • #14
                            I'd be tempted to epoxy spot prime the bare metal, to preserve it. Take something like a headlight rim, with the "repainted" blue on it, have a few quarts of acrylic enamel or even cheaper synthetic enamel such as tractor paint, mixed at a local paint jobber to match as close as possible. Then spot and panel paint temporarily so it's not obvious and enjoy it once running.

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