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Posts posted by TMA62

  1. 64tbird, those are railroad names. You are correct about the ATSF. The "NJ" stood for the "New Jersey, Illinois and Indiana Railroad". It was a short line that originated in South Bend just west of the Studebaker plant and ran south approximately 5 miles to a town called Pine, Indiana where it connected with the Wabash RR. That is what "WAB" stood for. In fact the NJI&I was a subsidiary to the Wabash. The Wabash headed west into Chicago and interchanged with the Santa Fe which took your Avanti to LA.

    So your Avanti was shipped by rail from South Bend to Los Angeles in one of those bi- or tri-level 85-foot long flatcars. I have seen another Avanti shipped the same routing to the southwest. Cool, huh? I think it is since I'm a railroad historian and model railroader too.

    If any others on this list have interesting SHIP VIA comments, please post them. If they are railroad oriented, I can help in telling you how your Avanti was shipped. I would also like to determine patterns in shipping from South Bend to parts around the country.

  2. Thanks for the words of encouragement! It has a 350 in it which I think was the second year for this engine in the Avanti II (the last year for the 327 was in 1969, I think). I will be putting the classic "star" hubcap on after the car is cleaned and broken in. That was how Avanti Corp painted their wheels but I will eventually paint them Studebaker cream and put on larger tires to match the Studebaker appearance. Dad ad the car shimmed and reshaped the front wheel cowlings to give his Avanti the same rake as the Studebakers.

    The car spent most of its 20 years of driving on Michigan roads and in Michigan weather. It was not sheltered in a garage during most of this time. The road salt really hit the frame and hogtroughs hard. A lot of work was needed to restore them. The back quarter of the frame ( from the rear axle to the rear bumper mounts )had to be replaced with a '62 GT Hawk frame. Still, it was worth it!

    One interesting thing of note. The A-pillars were completely fine and not corroded despite not a garage car for the first 15 years of its life.

  3. This is a 1971 Avanti II that was owned by my father, Robert F. Andrews, who was on the Raymond Loewy design team for the Studebaker Avanti project. Dad was one of the designers. This was his personal car. This car was kept in storage since Dad's passing in 1991. It has not run since. After a off-frame restoration that began February 2012, the rebuilt engine turned over on February 16, 2013, the first time in 22 years. The last time it ran, Dad was still alive.

    Thats Mike Baker of Avanti Restorations and Service in the video. He and Rick Moon performed the off- frame restoration. Great job guys!

  4. There is a green 1980 Avanti on Ebay right now:


    The seller describes the car to the bidders. He includes the following regarding the hogtroughs:

    ".... Ive talked at length with the gentelman who now owns Avanti about whether I should replace the "hog troughs". I was told there was absolutley no need to as the body will not sag or crack if they are rusty, which they are. It seems there is a myth about the hog throughs. they are not structural, they are NOT torque boxes as some like to call them. They are just stamped steel body fillers, according to Avanti their only purpose was to have a mounting point for the roll bar. So your choice if you want to replace them, this car has run without them for over 25 years without any sagging or cracks."

    Is this oversimplifying it or what?? Sure, the body is not going to sag. The cross member frame will prevent that. But apparently those meaningless hogtroughs are more of an accessory than to provide torsional stability.

  5. Thanks guys for the replies. Actually, both of my Avanti's are over at Mike Baker's garage in Greenfield. I asked him the same questions. Not that I don't trust him. Afterall, I've entrusted him with my cars. Plus he might be reading this! ;-)

    Seriously, I am very new to the hobby and I like to ask many questions to all people. It is a good way to get feedback and learn from other's experiences.

    Mike and Rick Moon have done this work at the shop so I will have good supervision when I work on my car. Mike also mentioned Evercoat products. I know that Bondo Company has a fiberglass repair kit but I have never tried it.

  6. List:

    I am about to start doing some body repair work. What products do you recommend? I have a few holes, a few surface ( seam ) cracks and a few complete cracks ( all the way through the fiberglass). I've never one this before so I am interested in your thoughts and advice.

    Thanks in advance!


    63R-1289 R-1

  7. Have any of you used LED's for your brake lights? I know that it is not prototypical but my concern is increased visibility. The Avanti brake lights are very small to today's cars and I fear someone not noticing me when I am stopped or turning.

    That's in advance.

  8. Were any Altman Avanti II's ever delivered with round headlight bezels? I know that all Avanti II's were special ordered. But I wonder if someone ever requested the round bezel over the square ones? It would have been easy to do and I doubt that Nate would have refused the order.

  9. Warren:

    Since the convention in South Bend, I have done searches for Avanti's across the country. I was looking for one to buy but also get a "feel" for the price range. For a early NA Avanti in very good condition would likely be in the $10-15K range. One that is in showroom quality would be closer to $20K. But some needing a little more work may be as low as $7,000. If the frame and hogtroughs are decent, the later may be the way to go.

    BTW, I did find and buy an Avanti. A '63 R-1 which is what I wanted all along.

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