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Posts posted by plwindish

  1. I had thought there were 100 built, but I may be wrong. I very recently sold my 89 convertible, # 481.  The transmissions the 89’s would have had would be the 700R4 AOD.  My 89 had been resto-modded before I had bought it and it had a crate 383 with a 4L60E AOD trans in it.

  2. JensonHealey, I just read the message that wdaly had sent me and I checked my '89 convertible in the garage.  The '89's use a single hood latch on the rear of the hood where earlier Avantis has one latch on each side at the rear of the engine bay.  I did get a couple of pics of the latch and there is a rubber plug in the body under the  latch assembly.  I'm too tired to get under the dash, but the rubber plug should be visible at the top of the bulkhead above where the steering column goes through the firewall.  As in the older Avantis, a long shaft screwdriver could be worked up to the top of the latch and used to pry the hood pin loose from the latch.  I hope this helps to get your hoods up. 




  3. Anyone one know if the ac blower motor direction can be changed?  I recently had a new blower motor assembly replaced in my 76.  Mechanic said the motor/assembly was identical to the old unit except the new unit had 4 wires instead of two that the old one had.  He hooked up the high speed wire, blower motor sounds just like the old one did when it was working but doesn't put out squat for air movement.  I was wondering if the motor is running backwards instead of blowing out.  Anyone have any ideas?

  4. Jack, it sound like you are describing my '76.  It still has the original 400 block, crank and oil pan.  Motor was first rebuilt in '11 and equipped with a hydraulic roller cam, head work, new aluminum intake and carb putting out 360 hp over the original 175.  Two years ago, as motor was undergoing  conversion to TBI fuel injection, a cracked head was discovered and it had another tear down, new pistons, rods, cam and aluminum heads were added.  Motor is running nicely now, putting out 470 hp and 570 torque.  A 200R4 was added in 2011 as well, making it a nice highway cruiser that can more than keep up with today's traffic.  I'm thankful it does not have a sunroof.  I was impressed with the overall quality of the car as I had a '64 years ago and the Avanti II's body quality, build quality and interior are superior to what the '64 had.

    I also have an '89 convertible that I bought 5 years ago already resto-modded with a 383 crate motor and a 4L60E trans with a Ford 9" rear end.  The steering and handling of the '89(Caprice suspension) is superior to the '76 with basically the old Studebaker suspension.  For long range traveling, I prefer the '76 being quieter and more comfortable than the '89.  A spare and spare cover in the '89 takes up all the trunk space.    The Lamborghini Red color with black interior and black out trim makes the '89 a drop dead great looking car driving around in the summer with the top down!

  5. All the Avanti weather stripping is available through the vendors, even the rear quarter window seals.  It would be far better to use the correct weather stripping than a "home brew" method. The weather stripping also needs to be correctly installed.  I had my '76 completely repainted in 2015, removing all windows as well as the weather stripping.  New weather stripping was installed but no putty or bedding compound was used under the drip rails or windshield.  My trip on Route 66 from Chicago area to Santa Monica proved to be really soggy on the first part of the trip driving through heavy rains from Chicago to St. Louis.  Water wicked under the drip rails and dripped on shoulders and the windshield leaked on our legs.  After Missouri, no more rain was encountered on the trip. After the trip, a run back to the body shop to properly use the bedding compound solved the issues.

  6. I had a similar issue with my '76 (400 SBC)a few years back.  Your mechanic should be able to easily check the accuracy of your gauge.  My gauge was accurate.  Pressure was anywhere from 28-36 at highway speed and down to nearly 0 idling.  My pressure issue was solved by finding a couple other issues with the motor and having it rebuilt.  Pressure at highway speeds is now at 52.

  7. I'll say false as original frames were getting in short supply and reportedly 6 cylinder Lark frames were "beefed" up to be used in new Avantis.  Interesting that new Avantis were being built on 20++ year old frames that been sitting outside rusting all that time.  No wonder there were frame rot issues in the 80's Avantis before they went to the GM frames.

  8. Bob, the 74 is looking really good!  Some of us in the midwest are still driving the Avantis around.  Sunday I was part of an mini caravan of Avantis going from the South Chicago Suburbs over to South Bend for Don Lindner's Avanti House 5th Anniversary highlighted with brunch at Tippecanoe and a entertaining talk by John Seaton back at the Museum afterwards.  My 89 is put away for the winter a couple of weeks ago and after another drive in Southern WI this next weekend, my 76 will also be put away until Spring.  The picture attached is our traveling timeline that drove to South Bend, Ed George's 63 R3, Mike Foglton's 83 and my 76 at the Lincoln Oasis on I-80 early Sunday morning.


  9. Randy, I've had the 400 in my 76 rebuilt twice so I've committed to keeping the engine (block, crank and oil pan) original. If I was doing it all over again, with reliability and power in mind, I'd most likely go for an LS swap.  The first rebuild, going 30 over saw new pistons, roller cam, lifters, head work, new aluminum intake and new carb.  That rebuild was just about dead even with what a crate motor install would have been in 2011.  The last rebuild was necessitated by a cracked head and required going another 10 over to clean up the cylinder wall damage in one cylinder.  The cracked head was discovered when converting the engine to a TBI EFI setup from MSD. This time, new pistons, rods, a more EFI friendly cam, aluminum heads, cast aluminum valve covers, ignition and spark box were added.  The motor is now putting out 471 hp and 560 pounds torque.  Its a screamer with the power and hopefully more reliable now as well, but the fact remains I could have had an LS swap done for considerably less than what was spent on the 2 rebuilds and the EFI.  I don't think we'll ever see originality being a premium in the Avantis made after 63, 64 and the 1st year II's made in 65/66.  A crate motor will definitely give your car a performance boost and most likely better fuel economy as well.  If you don't want to go the LS route with the more mods needed for install, go with a 383 crate and back it up with an automic overdrive trans for a nice street combination.  Changing the motor out will not hurt a II's value, putting in a new crate/ AOD combination will likely add value.

  10. Ken,

    The 89's must be wearing out at the same rate.  Last year I had the left rear window motor and mechanism rebuilt on my 89 convertible.  This year, the right front power window needed help going up.  Both were repaired/rebuilt at Window Motor World, 250 Palm Coast Pkwy NE, STE 607-140, Palm Coast FL  32137, phone - 800 252-2649.  They promise a 24 hour turn around time once window mechanism and motor are received.  I had the mechanism taken out of my 89 convertible while it was in for a windshield replacement and A pillar rust repair on both pillars.  Window Motor World repaired the motor and mechanism and sent back to the body shop that was doing the repair.  Car is now back and window is working fine, Window Motor World cost was $125.00. 

  11. 3 1/2 years ago I bought a 89 convertible that had a rock chip in the driver's line of vision.  The seller also had a new windshield he included with the sale so with the chip finally starting to spider crack I'm having it replaced next week.  Hopefully it will fit!  I did see Dan Booth at the South Bend Swap Meet and ordered the "installation kit" which consists of a new gasket, black silicone tubes and also the bedding compound.  One glass shop wouldn't touch it as the car had been repainted without taking the windshield out and they were afraid the paint around the could area would chip out.  I'm going back to the shop in Warrenville IL that did a killer paint job on my 76 coupe in 2015 to have them remove the windshield, correctly finish and paint around the windshield frame and cowl area and install the new windshield.

  12. My 76 had a piece of black vinyl attached to the body just under the gas fill neck similar to the above picture that folds up over the gas cap the acts as a protector from the nozzle but if careless filling will allow gas to run down it and onto the fender.  I've kept the piece vinyl on the gas fill even after repainting the entire car in 2015.  It does help protect the fender paint.

  13. StudeNorm,

         I registered with the AOAI for the Tacoma Meet and also am planning to have my car judged.  In past years I have had the car judged both by the AOAI and the SDC judging.  If I choose to have the car judged in both clubs, I will also need to register with SDC and pay the judging fee for SDC as well.  If you want to be judged by both, be prepared for the dual registration and judging fees.


  14. I had the gauges replaced in my 76 in 2012 and used Autometer identical to what Gunslinger has shown in his pics.  They are very similar to the SW gauges and many don't notice they are not the originals, except for the orange needles.  Speedo even had a trip odometer, but doesn't have a high beam indicator.

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