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Posts posted by PackardV8

  1. Even though the Studebaker V8 is a small block internally, externally it's a big block , this means any US OHV8 engine would fit in the Avanti engine compartment and most have been transplanted in at one time or another.

    I've seen Cadillac, big block and hemi Mopar, Oldsmobile and big block Chevy.  As mentioned, most Ford oil pans are front sump, but there are various truck pans which would have made the swap possible.

    As to the slant sick Mopar, we'll have to agree to disagree.  Its reputation for longevity is because it doesn't make enough horsepower to stress even four main bearings.

    jack vines

  2. 5 hours ago, JLBKY said:

    As Gary said above............The key to telling you about your engine is the engine number.


    FWIW, the engine number indicates in what body the block was originally installed and with what parts it was originally built.  Problem is, Stude V8s are now 60-70 years old and have been through many reincarnations.  

    One local Avanti owner bought a long-distance R2.  When it arrived, there was a stock 259" under the supercharger.  

    Another time, I bought a P-code 289" and even verified there were dished pistons inside.  Problem was, an unscrupulous SDC member had installed a 259" crankshaft.

    Bottom line - the only way to know what he has is to disassemble and check.

    jack vines

  3. X3 on going electronic.  Carburetors and distributors are crude mechanisms which don't have the ability to manage a supercharged engine to maximum output.  Take an R2 or R3 and run it flat out up a long mountain pass.  Guaranteed a terminal meltdown several minutes into the run.

    Today, there are 2-liter turbo engines making 335 horsepower with a warranty.  With a computer to control ignition and injection, adding an intercooler, a good R3 might make 500 horsepower and live.

    jack vines

  4. Since I've never had one of the original Winfield cams on a Cam Doctor to verify the specs I can't speak from that.  However, I'll ask the guy who raced them if he has more specificity.  IIRC his comments correctly, the 276-degree advertised timing was similar on both the Winfield and the production R3 cam.  The reason Studebaker Engineering changed the lobe profile for the production engines was the Winfield was more intense, producing too much lifter click and probably shorter cam lobe life.

    The racer does remember none of the race cars were as fast with the production cams.

    This article will also mention how some of the A and B engines were modified and/or swapped into more than one car owned/driven by a Granatelli or sold to friends and employees.  Sometimes, the production engines were pulled out and sold separately when another was installed and then that engine was swapped when the car was sold.  What is "original" depends on what point in time is being referenced.  The #5 Hawk was built as an R1, raced as an R3 and an R4 and then sold with an R1 reinstalled.

    As far as "an engine which was set up and verified by the Granatellis", each A-series was slightly different as they learned what the Studebaker V8 required to be fast.  The article I mentioned will detail how Paxton borrowed ideas from the few Stude racers out there.

    Then, after the shut-down at South Bend as the leftover R3 engines and parts began to run out, they/Paxton would still sell an "R3".  I know of one member who in the late 1960s purchased an R3 long block directly from them and when it arrived, it had ported stock heads,  stock rods; basically a stock long block with R3 pistons and cam in it.  His complaints were ignored.

    jack vines


  5. Ed, there's a forthcoming Turning Wheels article about the #5 '64 Hawk raced at Bonneville and R3 history in general. In that will be details as to how the A-series were built with Winfield cams.  After Bonneville, the plan was to run them at the NHRA Nationals.  By this time Studebaker had released specs for the production R3 engines and so to be legal for NHRA, the race cars had to take out the Winfield cams and swap them for the production Studebaker cams.  This account is from the guy who was there as it happened.

    jack vines

  6. 13 hours ago, brad said:

    I ran  the R3 engine in the car I did in Georgia, with a comp cams 279degree  .511 lift cam, and it was quite mild feeling . I never tried the more radicle 288. One must remember the larger displacement the engine the more duration cams have less effect on the idle . Huge engines can take more duration without being lumpy and not driveabe. As a side note that R3 engine made 405 hp. 

    For true, Brad; a more current best science cam, such as your 279-degree Comp Cams is very different in most respects than the 1950s Studebaker cam grinds.  FWIW, the original A-series prototype engines were built with Winfield cams.  Studebaker Engineering decided they were too intense and too noisy for the production B-series engines.  The 276-degree cam chosen for the production engines has much milder ramps and produced less power.

    Also, the Comp Cams getting .579" lift in 279 degrees indicates a much more intense rate of lift than the OEM .406" lift in 276 degrees.

    Intake and exhaust manifolds influence how a given cam feels and behaves.  The OEM Studebaker iron dual plane intake and exhausts help to tame cam duration.  The same cam run with a single plane intake and custom four tube exhaust headers feels and sounds quite different.

    Congrats on that 405hp in a package which will fit under an Avanti hood and look mostly original.  Those two are not easy, as many have discovered.

    jack vines


  7. 22 hours ago, studegary said:

    The Engine Number would be unique to R2 engines in an Avanti.

    And only the engine number.  All the '62-'64 Studebaker V8 blocks are functionally identical.  A truck or a Lark will have the same block.

    As to the value, yes, on a 100-point restoration, having the correct "number-matching" block would add some value at resale.  For the average Avanti, it makes no difference.

    jack vines

  8. The production R3 cam is 276 degrees duration.  To make best use of it in a modified stock head requires a custom intake manifold, R3 airbox, professional porting, larger intake valves and the R3 exhaust system.  Even with that, the increased power will be mostly above 4,000 RPM.

    If one is going to use the OEM iron intake manifold, the 260 degree R2 cam or the 266 degree R2+ cam is usually a better choice.

    jack vines

  9. No, Ed, they weren't overlooked; those were prototype California hot rods; no two were alike and have little resemblance to production R3 engines.  

    The "World's Fastest Production Car" fable will be with us forever.  Those who were there in the day know and have reported there was nothing "production" about those cars.  They were hand-built race cars.  How did the United States Auto Club  certify the Avanti R-3 as completely stock?   The engine hadn't yet gone into production, but since Studebaker, STP and Paxton were paying USAC to be there, "stock" was whatever Andy said it was.

    Just one of several examples; when the R3 actually went into production, Studebaker Engineering refused to use the Winfield camshaft design from the race engines.  They determined it would be too noisy and too short-lived for a production car.

    FWIW, several of the modifications used in those "A" engines were submitted to the Pure Stock Muscle Car Drag Race Tech Committee for their approval to use in PSMCDR competition.  They were unanimous, "Factory race team prototypes are not stock cars.  If it didn't come down the production line available for general sales, don't bring it to race."

    jack vines

  10. Quote

    Also, you're incorrect in your assessment of R3 type Studebaker engines....The first nine or ten of them DID NOT have larger valves than the regular Stude 289! (although they did benefit from extensive porting and polishing work)

    Ed, we're going to have to agree to disagree on this one.  If it doesn't have the larger valves and intake ports, it's not an R3.  

    jack vines

  11. Quote

    In my opinion, large intake valves and extensive porting work are somewhat unnecessary in a supercharged engine.....Supercharger pressure more than makes up for the lack of big valves and extensive porting work.


    You're welcome to your own opinion, but not to your own facts.  The Studebaker Engineering dynometer and my own dyno tests conclusively proved the Studebaker V8 does need larger intake valves and extensive porting to exceed the 289hp of the R2.  That's what they did to the R3 to achieve 335hp.  (Yes, the additional 15.5 cubic inches and longer camshaft timing  did add some of that 46 horsepower.  The R3 Engineering Blueprints include specifications and notations for hand porting the enlarged intake passages of the R3 heads.  There is no evidence any of the nine production engines received that extra work.)


    Also, I'd stay away from single plane manifolds for street driven vehicles...especially ones that may be driven in colder climates.

    I've never noticed single plane intakes being worse in colder climates.  Are we confusing blocking off the exhaust crossover heat in the intake?  In any case, the R2 intake gaskets already restrict the exhaust crossover passage.  Studebaker Engineering thought the tradeoff necessary.

    jack vines

  12. Yes, to all of the above.

    To reach the maximum potential of the Studebaker V8, the cylinder heads require professional porting, larger intake valves and an improved intake manifold.  There are only a few of Jeff Rice's modified Mopar intakes which will fit under a C.K/Avanti hood when using an R3 airbox.

    FWIW, I have one of his single-plane aluminum intakes and a Rochester Quadrajet which would be good in an R3 airbox.  

    jack vines

  13. X4 - not enough information to make any recommendations.  I once spent quite a bit of time writing out engine troubleshooting procedures.  When I finally got to speak with the owner to get more information, it was the transmission causing "no acceleration."

    Suggest Mr. Glawe take the time to delineate exactly how the car is behaving hot, cold, from stop and from cruise.   Does it cough?  Backfire?  Free rev RPM?  Most importantly, how recently were the spark plugs, plug wires, distributor cap, rotor, points and condenser replaced?

    jack vines

  14. 7 hours ago, plwindish said:

    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.


    Yes, your car is pretty much the way I'd do one, maybe with improved anti-roll bars, shocks, tires and wheels.

    jack vines


  15. 5 hours ago, mfg said:

    What you're possibly not seeing Jack, is that there are only so many ORIGINAL Sunbeam Tigers out there.....a limited supply of Tigers that are probably best left unmolested.

    Wouldn't it perhaps be more practical to purchase something like a 'Factory Five' reproduction Cobra...and build it any way the spirit moves you?....Ed:)

    Your car, your money, your decision.  And no, I'd never want a Cobra under any circumstances.  They were and are a miserable thing to drive on the street.  Difficult to believe, but the Sunbeam Tiger is a much more comfortable car, especially for taller drivers.

    FWIW, the original Tiger needed a lot of help and frankly wasn't that much fun to drive with skinny bias ply tires on skinny steel wheels, a 260" 2bbl which floated the valves at 4800 RPM.

    Another FWIW, I was president of STOA back in the early 1970s and there just wasn't that much interest in restoring Tigers because they were so much more fun to drive when modified, but when resale came, a restored car usually brought more money.  Modifications and color choices are so individual; especially flared fenders and pearlescent paint were sometimes difficult to find a buyer who liked that combination of changes.  I know I didn't.

    jack vines


  16. As with any old car, what we buy today depends on how many sympathetic owners and their budget for maintenance and improvement during the past fifty years; also whether we want improved or restored.  JMHO, but an Avanti with a all-aluminum LS 6.0 and six-speed automatic would be a nice ride.

    FWIW, I had a growing-family budget during the fifteen years I owned our 1965 Sunbeam Tiger.  It was well-taken-care-of and carefully modified.  I sold it to a guy with more money and  during his twenty-five-year ownership, he added a 5-speed, aluminum heads and many other expensive improvements.  My little brother and I bought it back and he has had the budget to take it to the next level with EFI, new suspension, new wheels, et al.  Today, it's an infinitely better quality and faster and better handling car than an original 1965 Sunbeam Tiger and many design compromises have been corrected.  Still, there are those who'll pay more if it were a restored original.  Their money, their car, their decision.

    jack vines

  17. 4 hours ago, Avanti83 said:

    I can only speak of 74 and 83 but the 83 is quality assembly with high end materials. The 74, I consider a kit car assembled by folks that didn't seem to care as much as the folks that did the 83. Materials are also lower quality than the 83. If I wanted to build a cruiser, I find the best 83 with Recaro seats I could find and start there unless you wanted the later style bumpers.

    Of course, the 83 stickered at $33K so it had a head start on the 74. I'd also agree about the sunroof, mine doesn't leak but I don't open it and it reduces headroom. I'm 6'3" with a 32"inseam for comparison and I can't wear a ball cap in mine.

    When I sent Leatherque a sample of leather from the 83 to match colors, they said it was one of the best leather qualities they had seen from that era.

    JMO, Bob

    Hi, Bob,

    So you're saying from experience the last Altman Avanti II was the best in quality and materials?  This begs the question of why essentially the same facility, same employees, same basic design, made a better car in 1983 than they did in 1974?  To what do we attribute the difference?

    jack vines

  18. As a third-generation Studebaker guy and having owned too many to count, I've never owned an Avanti II.  If one were to undertake a search, which years would you recommend and why?   Here are my thoughts and rationale:

    1. I'd never consider an Avanti II with a sunroof.  I consider them an abomination in any car, but have heard nothing but problems with those  in Avanti II.  Obviously, Avanti II were often custom-ordered, thus could be had without the leaker, but were sunroofs standard in some years?

    2. Many Avanti II no longer have the original engine/transmission, but which have you liked best?  The 327", 350" or 400"?  It's not a deal breaker in any case.  The engine and transmission is easily and inexpensively converted to that of one's personal preference.  The cost of a strong and reliable SBC and transmission to suit one's needs is barely antshit percentage of the cost of the car, paint and interior.

    If I were building an engine for myself, it would most likely be a 400" with aluminum heads and cast iron block hugger headers, a hydraulic roller cam, GM TPI and a TH200-4R transmission.  Again, what have you liked best?

    jack vines

  19. Agree, the original Avanti/Lark suspended clutch linkage is a total POS and agree, he shouldn't replicate that.  

    Also agree, it's probably easier to add a suspended pedal and convert it to driving a hydraulic master cylinder and a hydraulic throwout bearing.  He'll love the feel and the action.

    Also agree, if doing a trans swap, go all the way to a 5-speed.  It will transform the car and the driving experience.

    jack vines

  20. JMHO, but bias plys are for show cars and radials are for cars which are driven.   I have run radials since the late 1960s.

    Same with air pressures; the recommended 24 front and 20 rear was suicidal, even for the crap bias tires which were OEM.  The high-speed recommendation of 30 PSI was slightly less bad.  With today's radials, it depends upon the size chosen, the wheel width and the manufacturer and how the car will be driven.

    jack vines

  21. Yes, thanks for the correction.  If it in fact has a supercharger on a 259", it would be the second such fraud perpetrated on an Avanti buyer we've heard of.  Some years back, a Spokane Avanti member bought an R2 out of the midwest and it arrived with a stock 259" under the Paxton.

    jack vines

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