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Posts posted by okc63avanti

  1. I have been thinking on converting my automatic R-1 to a manual transmission with overdrive. I like to keep things original, however, I prefer the manuals. Living in Southern, CA low revs on the freeway is what I am looking for. A couple of questions,

    1. What are the RPMs of the stock Stude overdrive at around 70 mph using a more common 3:31 rear axle? Is it much lower than the auto?

    2. Are there any modern 5 speed transmissions that fit the Stude 289?

    3. Has anyone done this that has advice to offer regarding ease of conversion?


    Paul Katson

    My 63 Avanti R1 is being converted from an R1 with PowerShift automatic to an R2+ with a Tremec TKO 5 speed. The work is being done by Mike Myer at Myer Studebaker in Ohio. I've written a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet and you can download from Bob Johnstone's website. The spreadsheet let's you input the diameter of your tires, transmission ratios and the rear end ratio to calculate RPM at 60 and 70 MPH.

    To make the conversion here's whats involved. Mike found a early 61~62 289 bell housing with GM bolt pattern for a Borg-Warner T10. These are getting hard to come by. Phil Fairborn at Fairborn Studebaker has a new bell housing with that pattern but I believe it requires the use of a hydraulic throw-out bearing (maybe not a bad idea). There are also some adapter plates if you can't find an early bell housing or what to save a little money.

    The Tremec TKO new will run about $2100, I'm not sure what a used one would go for but you would want to make sure it wasn't abused and is in good shape. The older Borg Warner T5 are not rated to handle the torque that a R series engine can put out. The mid~late 90's Camaro & Firebirds used a Tremec 3550 and that may be a good choice if you can find one.

    Mike will use a GM clutch plate to match up with the input spline count Tremec uses for GM applications. Once trans is installed and both are in the chassis, the driveshaft will be taken to a driveshaft shop Mike is comfortable with to have it shortened and balanced.

    Do check out Bob Johnstone's website its a great source of technical data and there is quite a bit posted on 5 speed transmissions.

    My link

  2. During the most recent episode (Season 5, Episode 5 on 8/11/10) of "Psych" a comedy/drama TV series one of the characters Carlton Lassiter (actor Tim Omundson) walks by a parked gold colored Avanti and says ... a 1983 Avanti one of 189 made that year and designed and inspired by the 1964 Studebaker Avanti.

    The episode is called "Shawn & Guns in Drag (Racing)"

    Here's a link to a website where you can watch the episode online the clip with the Avanti happens about 8 mins and 45 secs into the episode ...


    It would be nice to know who's Avanti this belongs to ...

  3. I purchased my new carpet set from John Polous Historic Automotive, it is solid black and I chose to upgrade to a higher quality 80/20 blend loop carpet over the least expensive set.


    Send him an email or call him with your questions. I believe none of the factory original speckled carpet colors can be exactly matched. (black/red, black/turquoise or black/orange). There are multi-colored capets that are close but not exact. If you are restoring for 100% originality for judging, I'm not sure how the close but not exact carpets would score, hopefully being that exact is unavailable you wouldn't be deducted for it. If someone has experience in being judged with the close but not exact multi-color carpet please chime in on this post. If there is a possibility of negative judging, I think (not 100% sure) that the interior colors schemes that used the speckled colors also used solid black.

  4. I went through the same thing last year that you are going through now. I have a 64 Avanti with black carpet. I questioned the people at Phantom Auto Works, Dave Thebeault, The Avanti cheif judge at the Iowa nationals, and several others. The final determination was-----The origional Avanti carpet was a cut pile. The yarn has a twist that makes it look like loop pile. However, the test is to take a small nail or safety pin and slide it into the pile. Try to pull upward. If it was loop, you would not be able to pull the pin up. However I was able to pull the pin up through the pile. As I said the type of twist makes it look like loop. I chose to use cut pile. If you have multicolor carpet, I think the only type available is loop. Even the black loop looks much like origional. The whole discussion was on the SDC forum last year, around October. Good luck.

    Thanks for the input. I'm not too concerned with originality as the car is being modified. I just wanted a nicer more durable carpet so I ultimately order an 80/20 blend (upgrade from what most vendors advertise) loop pile in black. I'll let you know what its like when it get installed and get a chance to see. The car is 1000 miles away from me in Ohio where its being restored.

  5. I posted this on Studebaker Forum but have had no answers yet plus it will be down tomorrow for a switch over to new software.

    Was the original factory carpet in Studebaker Avanti cars a loop pile or a cut pile carpet? Any opinions on which is more dense and more durable?


    I didn't get any forum responses but I did get an e-mail from JDP (John Poulos) with an answer, so I will post it here for those with inquisitive minds.

    Studebaker factory carpet was a loop pile versus the cut pile. According to JDP he thinks the loop pile will be less likely to mat down over time.

  6. I posted this on Studebaker Forum but have had no answers yet plus it will be down tomorrow for a switch over to new software.

    Was the original factory carpet in Studebaker Avanti cars a loop pile or a cut pile carpet? Any opinions on which is more dense and more durable?


  7. I have a couple Avanti that are dismantled.

    My question in selling parts, Body, engine, Drivetrain , interior etc... Where does one go to find ture values?

    I saw in another post that a 64 tile steering column can go for up to $2000. If this is true when one would sell

    a car as a project or parts car , what would a value be?

    Say I have all the parts to complete a car yet no desire to do the job.

    Anyway what is a good site to find values on used, NOS, or refurbished values?

    Determining the price of parts is not straight forward. I would suggest that parts of of a used vehicle being parted out are less that the value one would be willing to pay for a NOS part or a good condition part that comes from a Studebaker vendor. Go to the Studebaker vendor websites, Studebaker International probably being the largest and see what they are charging for parts. Many avanti parts are being reproduced and someone rebuilding an avanti would probably prefer reproduced (new) or NOS parts first. Also start checking out Ebay and see what parts are listing for. I suspect the tilt steering column price may have been an impulse buyer. If you have one in good shape you might try listing it first on Ebay and see what it goes for.

    I thought about the tilt wheel for my rebuild but apparently the original Stude tilt wheel only tilted downward and most of us find that if anything we wish the steering wilt would tilt upward. Most who have the tilt wheel say they leave it in the maximum height position most of the time.

    Do a little research and place some adds in turning wheels possibly. You might think about seeing if some of the regular vendor/car restoration guys out there would quote a single price to take a complete parts car off your hands.

    Good Luck,

  8. Pete,

    OK I did some checking and ran the math through my spreadsheet here's a table of results for a Stude PowerShift and a GM Turbo700 4 speed automatic. These calculations are for P215/70R15 Tires with a diameter of 26.85" I hope this helps :)

    PowerShift final ratio = 1.0

    RPM @60 MPH @ 70 MPH


    2486 / 2901


    2659 / 3102


    2802 / 3269

    GM T700 final ratio = 0.70

    RPM @60 MPH @70 MPH


    1740 / 2030


    1861 / 2172

    3:73 1961 / 2288

  9. Pete,

    My 63 Avanti before starting its restoration was an R1 with PowerShift Automatic and AC. It was equipped with the standard axle for an automatic with AC which is a 3:31 ratio rear-in. The R2 vs R1 will have no effect on the RPM you are turning, just how past you get there! :) The 3:73 axle would be pretty standard for a R2 as it will allow faster acceleration and performance. I'm not sure what your RPM will be with the 3:73 but it should be higher than what my Avanti was turning at the same speed, if we are both running the same size wheels and tires.

    My R1 with auto and 3:31 rear end would run about 2900~3000 RPM at 70 MPH. If you are wanting to lower RPM for economy look at going to the 3:31 or 3:07 rear end and changing the trans to a 4 speed GM automatic. I'm changing my Avanti with restoration to a Tremec TKO with final 0.68 overdrive ratio, will increase my rear end to the 3:73 and will get both the performance and lower RPM at highway speeds.

    If you send me your tire size, I can calculate your RPM at various speeds if I know what transmission you would like to run and what combination rear end gears. I've written an Excel spreadsheet to help me do the math.

    Just let me know ... John

  10. Jay,

    Here's another possibility to consider. I've chatted with Bez several Monday nights on Studebaker forum chat room and he does quality work as well. He just finished restoring Lew Schucart's Avanti. (Lew is editor of Avanti magazine)


    Here's a cut-n-paste from a Studebaker forum posting by Bez where he is considering traveling across country and doing restoration in your local area.

    ...... from Studebaker forum..........................

    How does the idea of a traveling Stude restorer sound to you? Rather than shipping your car across country to have it worked on, I will come to your area to do the work for you. I'm lining up jobs for summer and winter 2010 - will travel to your location to do your restoration. I'm available to do larger jobs - partial and full restorations.

    Many of the cars I've worked on have placed (398 points out of possible 400) in national car competitions, including SDC shows. I do quality, attention to detail work and can provide first-rate references. Please see my website for info about cars I have worked on: http://auto-alchemy.com

    If you have adequate garage space, I can do much of your work on-site or I will locally rent garage work space to do your job. I can make arrangements for and provide quality control for any portion of the restoration work that is jobbed out in your locale, such as frame off media blasting, upholstery, machining services.

    If you're interested, call or email and let's discuss your project.

    Bez Auto Alchemy



  11. Jay,

    Glad to here another Avanti owner is thinking about restoration. I live in Oklahoma but I rented a 3/4 ton diesel and dual axle car trailer and towed my 63 Avanti to Myer's Studebaker in Duncan Falls, OH. Mike has had my car for 1 year now and we anticipate completion maybe by May or June. I am doing a frame off restoration / modification. I'm not keeping the car completely stock as I want to be able to drive it anywhere at any time in comfort and safety.

    Originally an R1 with Auto and AC its being converted to a Supercharged R2+ with R123a AC and a Tremec TKO 5 speed. My engine rebuild is finsihed now, the chassis has been sand blasted and powder coated. The body has been repaired, sanded smooth, primed and Michael Myer planned on starting the painting of body this week or will start next week. He and his Dad, Jon Myer (technical/ repair contributer to TW) will hold a Tech Meet at their place April 17th. I plan on flying in from OKC to attend and check on the progress of my car. Here's a link to their web site and a link to pictures showing progress on my car.



  12. A man in a business suit in his 30's walked up to me at a gas station and asked "what kind of car was it?"

    I said "a Studebaker", He said "Oh its European", I said "No its American", He said "Never heard of it, are you sure?" :rolleyes:

    At another gas station someone asked me if my Avanti was an Aston Martin.... I lied and said no but its faster !! ;)

  13. The other day talking to a Stude vendor, he thought the only front and rear shocks available for the Avanti are the Gabriels. I would rather run Koni or Bilsein shocks. Does anyone know part nos. or where they can be ordered from if they are still available. I do not want to make modifications to frame or suspension. My car is being retored with original suspension.



  14. I recently purchased a 1970 Avanti Motors Parts and Accessories price list to go along with my '70 Avanti, and when I looked through it, out fell an eight page Avanti II Parts Supplement as an addition to the Studebaker Avanti Parts Catalog.

    It lists Avanti Motors part numbers for post-Studebaker Avanti parts, the vendor each was sourced from, and the vendor's part number for each. It's a 1970 listing, so it may not be much help to those who own later Avanti II's, but it should still be a help to all to some degree.

    I've scanned the list as a .pdf file and anyone who wants a copy, just send me an e-mail and I'll e-mail it back as an attachment.

    If you are OK with sharing this parts list with the entire Avanti and Studebaker world, why not send a copy to Bob Johnstone, his webpage is just about the greatest source of technical data and parts cross reference source available.

    His webpage is http://www.studebaker-info.org/

    If you don't have his email or can't find on his webpage somewhere, let me know and with your permission if you send it to me I will forward to Bob.

  15. Thanks for your comments. I really like the '78 Avanti, but still prefer the looks of the original. I drove 63R3351 for 29 years, so I guess that's why I"m partial to the original lines. To that end, I removed the frame horns and got rid of the "boxing gloves" on the rear bumper. Fortunately, the P.O. removed the "II" emblems and side moldings when he had the car painted. I like the look of the Avanti hood ornament too, but I haven't decided whether I'll add that or not.

    One note about the Magnum 500 spinners: They are 3-pronged, on a 5-lug wheel. The result is that one lug nut on each wheel is blocked by the spinner. So, you need to carry a breaker bar with a socket to get the last lug in the event of a flat tire. Not good design, but I think that the spinners look good. The '78 came from the factory with 6" Magnum 500 wheels, with the plain center.

    My 63 Avanti R2386 is at Myer's Studebaker in Ohio right now getting a complete frame off restoration. Plans are to make performance, comfort and safety upgrades so that I can enjoy my car and feel at ease driving it across country to meets if I choose to do so. I've been looking at several wheel choices right now I am leaning towards Halibrand 5 spokes that have an optional spinner as well. Here's a picture of them on another car.


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