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Billy Shears

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  • My Avanti
    63 R2463

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  1. Studebaker did have a color called "regal red" in 1963, which was a fire engine red, and I've seen in on Larks. It was never offered on the Avanti though. If one wasn't too much of a purist, one could go with that, and at least it would be a Studebaker color, though not accurate for the Avanti. The Avanti red was a metallic "tomato red" with a hint of orange in it (I think that may come from the metallic flakes in the paint being gold instead of silver colored; I read somewhere that was the case). It's a good looking color, but I had my car repainted, and I wanted to use a non-metallic color, as you can't make an invisible touch up to metallic paint. I almost went with the regal red, as I really think red looks good on an Avanti, but in the end, I wanted to stay more original, and went with one of the only two non-metallic colors Studebaker offered for this car: Avanti white. I only did that after much hesitation, as I really like red on Avantis, and I have never been a huge fan of white as a car color. I have to say, having gone the white, I am very glad I did. Avanti white is not a bright white, it's an eggshell white, almost exactly the same as Ford's Wimbledon white, and I think it looks great on an Avanti.
  2. Another, perhaps simpler solution is probably the one I used -- buy the sold shroud that is available, then get yourself a fiberglass repair kit and do the following: after marking a line on your shroud where you will cut it in half on either side, apply a good coating of car wax to the inside of the shroud where that line is, extending above and below. Next, use your fiberglass repair kit to create a pair of tabs that will extend above and below the line where you will make your cut. Build up a couple of layers until the tabs are thick enough, and let them dry; after they are dry, you can pop them right off thanks to the wax you put on the inside of the shroud. Once they are off, sand the edges neat, and clean the wax coating off the inside of the shroud. Cut the shroud in half where you marked your lines, then go back and use the resin in your fiberglass repair kit to permanently bond the tabs to the lower half. After that's dry, clamp the two halves back together, and drill a couple of holes on each side of the upper half of the shroud (and the tabs on the inside where they overlap). Now you have a two-piece shroud that does not have that open area like the horseshoe shrouds do, and which you can take off and reinstall easily without having to remove your fan.
  3. Mine were as well, owing to a leak in the rear window seal that let water accumulate both under the rear seat, and in the trunk (where it rusted the jack into a solid lump of iron oxide). I got an entire rear seat assembly -- seat bottom, seat back, and fiberglass backing panel -- from a parted out Avanti II. That will probably be your best bet.
  4. I think people are going to have to start looking for an alternative. I did this to my car, but let me tell you, I had no end of difficulty tracking down one of those spoilers. Now that the Saturn division of GM is defunct, almost every place where you could obtain one of those no longer stocks them.
  5. I am in the process of redoing my Avanti's interior -- almost all of it myself -- and I got a new dash pad from Dan Booth (the repros he's making on the old tooling; I'm very happy with it and it looks fantastic), and I got the interior kit from Rene Harger. I'm about 2/3rds done now, but one thing neither Messrs. Booth nor Harger have is a headliner. I don't really want to use the solid fiberglass pieces that Studebaker International sells. Does anyone know of a decent facsimile of the checkerboard pattern headliner material they put on these cars from the factory? The closest I can find is a diamond pattern, which I don't really like the looks of. BTW: I am never restoring another old car again as long as I live!
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