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Timing cover finish -- semi-gloss black or natural aluminum?


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I have the timing cover off of R5083 (it's an R2 289).  It had some very minor traces of black paint on it but was 95% bare aluminum.  The Authenticity Manual does not shed any light on the original finish on the timing cover, at least not that I can find.  The shop manual shows a number of engine pictures that show the timing cover with a natural aluminum finish, but Studebaker may have done that for shop manual photos simply for better contrast.  A black finish would make sense because the engine was likely painted black with the timing cover in place and I doubt that the factory would take the time to mask off the cover.  But it sure looks nice in natural aluminum.  Does anyone know what it was originally and/or what would be considered correct by Avanti show judges?

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Black. Even the fuel pump was black. But, I too think it looks good natural. But for show judging, it should be black.

 

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Don't want to disagree with Brad, however, every Stude V8 aluminum timing cover I have ever seen was natural aluminum, albeit with some engine paint overspray.  Just to confirm, I went out to the shop and 4 engines, which I believe to be unmolested, have aluminum covers au naturel with overspray. 

I have never seen a black fuel pump. I have several original Carter pumps and all are natural aluminum.

Of course, after 60+ years, all timing covers and fuel pumps could have been replaced. 

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FWIW, in the Avanti workshop manual,  figs 10 and 11 on page 9 of the engine section clearly show aluminum colored timing cover and fuel pump. The aluminum color is also clear in fig 12 page 10 in the same section.

 

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Interesting question!....I always thought the timing cover was painted black along with the rest of the long block....Even on the showy Avanti engines, it's difficult to think Studebaker would take the time to mask off the timing cover in production.....or install the timing cover after the rest of the engine was already painted black.

I do know one thing for sure .... those aluminum covers do not like to 'hold' paint very long, especially after many heating and cooling cycles!:o

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I agree, they likely did not do much if any masking, hence the overspray. We can surmise that several items such as chrome valley cover, valve covers, intake and water manifolds, as well as other parts, were installed after long block painting. 

I do find it odd that of the dozen or so engines that have been through my shop, not one has/had an engine color timing cover or fuel pump.  Maybe we should take a poll to see how many engine colored timing covers exist. 

Does any one have a picture of the engine painting/assembly process? Any one left alive that could shed some light on this matter?

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I dare say the 'lesser' '63-'64 Studebaker V8's, (259 and standard 289), had timing gear covers painted black, same as the rest of the long block.

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Not in my experience.  The engines I checked are from a 55 Speedster, 57 & 58 President, 61 Lark, 62 GT. I also checked the timing cover from a very low mileage 63 R1. I do not see a reason for a change in engine assembly/painting procedures. 

Is there a picture in any Studebaker publication that shows painted timing covers for engines 55 and later?

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I remember a Richard Quinn historical photo (in black& white) of a row of '55 President engines on final assy at the factory....I'm pretty sure the timing covers were painted the block color....but I can't swear to it!:huh:

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