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SASCO parts are sold


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Following is a press release from Studebaker International:

It’s Official – Studebaker International Purchases SASCO Inventory

I’m very happy to announce that after many months of negotiation, an agreement has been reached between Studebaker International and Teachers Credit Union for S.I. to purchase the entire inventory of Studebaker parts that formerly belonged to SASCO.

I was first alerted to the possible sale this last April when I received an email from Dennis Lambert stating that the inventory was “for sale” and that he considered me to have the “know-how to handle the mass of parts”. It was only when we met at a later time that I learned the city of South Bend had given Dennis notice that the inventory would have to be moved as the building was to be demolished. It’s been a long process since then, looking at possible sites for the relocation, investigating what it would take to make the move and looking at sources of funding. I’m happy to report at this time that a formal agreement has been signed between Teachers Credit Union, owner of the inventory, and Studebaker International and I am now able to go ahead with the move.

Before I continue, I want to praise Dennis Lambert for his many years at Newman & Altman and then at SASCO providing parts. Dennis could have walked away from this inventory 10 years ago and these parts might have ended up as part of a landfill somewhere near South Bend. Instead, without much capital Dennis was able to secure the former Studebaker Engineering Building and move the huge inventory in a record amount of time and to continue making these parts available for Studebaker drivers. For this we owe him much gratitude.

I also want to acknowledge Teachers Credit Union and the city of South Bend for their determination to see that these parts were saved. There was never a doubt in my mind that both entities were concerned with the preservation of the inventory and its continued availability for Studebaker owners.

I am also happy to announce that Dave Spilski and George Imlar are now employed by Studebaker International and will continue working at our South Bend location.

The inventory will be moved to the Studebaker Business Center which is located in the southern part of South Bend on Chippewa Avenue. The U.S. government constructed this building during World War II for Studebaker to produce aircraft engines. We will share this huge facility with other businesses already operating from the complex. Please keep in mind that this new facility will not be open for some time, so please don’t come there now expecting to buy Studebaker parts or to tour the facility.

The new Studebaker International South Bend will in some ways be like the former business, but will incorporate my management style and will in many ways also be different. Beginning immediately, all orders for parts, either located in our Greenfield or South Bend locations, will be directed to our Greenfield store and South Bend phones will be diverted to Greenfield. Most shipments will also be sent from Greenfield with the exception of some larger parts which may be shipped from South Bend. Parts located in South Bend can still be ordered from the Greenfield location during this time of transition. We will do our best to keep you supplied with parts from either location. The South Bend store will remain closed for a few months while the move is taking place. Local residents are asked to please support the moving process by phoning orders to Greenfield and to not interrupt the moving process in South Bend. For those willing to wait a few days for their parts, orders may be picked up in South Bend.

Anyone who has toured the former SASCO site knows that there are multiple crates containing unidentifiable materials that are not car or truck parts, having no value and only taking up space. These will be sorted and most discarded. There are also parts that may have come from production that have no value. There are other instances where large quantities of certain slow moving parts are there. Some of these stocks may be lessened. Remember, each square foot of space that is utilized has a yearly cost in rent attached to it that must be retrieved from sales. For those of you who would like to have a look at items that may be discarded, it is my hope that when the move is nearly complete we can have a sale and invite everyone in for a last look at the building and for a chance to pick up some last minute bargains. The sale will probably take place over a weekend during the winter months and notice will be published.

I know there is concern as to what will happen with prices for the parts. Although I don’t anticipate any radical increases, there will be some. It has been my observation for some time that some of the prices were unusually high, and some were also very low. The previous owner had the benefit of not having to pay rent. I will not have this luxury with the monthly cost of the building being almost $18,000 and there is the horrendous cost of the move. There is also the cost involved in finally getting this inventory sorted and organized so that needed parts may be found. I know that many who have posted on the Forum and have seen the inventory can comprehend its size and the magnitude of the move, but for those who haven’t witnessed the inventory, it’s hard to imagine its size and the difficulty involved in moving.

Many have already offered to help with the move and this is very much appreciated. Once we get started I will post information on the SDC Forum as to how volunteers may assist. The new building is 3.3 miles from the current site, and 3 tractor trailers will be utilized.

I want to conclude by thanking all who have given support along the way. My goal is to continue to make Studebaker parts available for many years to come and to keep these cars on the road.

Ed Reynolds

Studebaker International

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