Commanding Leader - Central Virginia Chapter of the Studebaker

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Central Virginia Chapter

July 1st, 2016 Volume 13, Issue 3

Commanding Leader Calendar of Events * Designates CVC Event

CVC/SDC Meet ~ June 11th,

After getting rained out for our May 21st meet, the sun came through, and CVC attended the Extra Billy’s Orphan Car Cruise-In.


Saturday, July 23, 2016 11:00am - 2:00 pm Cruise In Car Show & Block Party sponsored by Rebuild America Outreach Ministry of Faith Landmark Ministries Highland Springs High School 15 South Oak Avenue Henrico VA 23075 No registration fee, free admission, no judging or awards, and no rain date. INFO: Keith Perry (804) 617-0469 EMAIL: [email protected] WEBSITE: Saturday, August 20, 2016 Bruce’s Super Body Shops and Extra Billy’s BBQ present the 12th Annual PAW-PAW CLASSIC CAR SHOW FOR CANCER 9 AM to 4 PM, gates open at 8 AM; Registration cutoff is 11 AM. 1110 Alverser Drive Midlothian, VA 23113 INFO: Jeff Malo, (804) 272-0579 or [email protected] Saturday, September 17, 2016 Nash Car Club of America National Show Wyndham Virginia Crossings Hotel & Conference Center 1000 Virginia Center Pkwy Glen Allen, VA 23059 INFO: Reggie Nash [email protected]

Driving Studebakers were Lee Harrison, 1962 Studebaker Lark Daytona convertible, Maze & Linwood Melton, 1963 Studebaker Avanti R-2 and Debbie & Jim Jett, 1963 Studebaker GT Hawk R-1. Attending sans Studebaker were Preston Young, Betty & Linwood Crawford. Dan Gori drove his 1951 Henry J hot rod, keeping with the orphan theme.

1963 Studebaker GT Hawk R-1, 1963 Studebaker Avanti R-2, 1962 Studebaker Lark Daytona

The group was joined by Reggie Nash and Mark Fielding on the patio for dinner. Mark became a CVC member after the meet. We were outnumbered by Pontiac again this year, but our cars received a lot of attention from fans.

1922 Nash owned by Reggie Nash

September 16, 17 & 18, 2016 Field Day of the Past Gates open 8:00am The Field Day of the Past show grounds are located at the intersection of Route 623 (Ashland Road) and Route 622 in Goochland County. Off I-64, exit #172 Dan Gori with his 1951 Henry J (Rockville Manakin) south. Grounds are located 1/8 mile from the interstate. Follow the signs. Cost: $10 on Friday; $15 on Saturday; $10 on Sunday; $8 for Senior Citizens 62 and older; 12 and younger; Free

View from the patio

Debbie & Jim Jett, 1963 Studebaker GT Hawk R-1

It was a “hot” time at the cruise-in, but, “We Invented Cool”.

Maze & Linwood Melton, 1963 Lee Harrison, 1962 Studebaker Studebaker Avanti R-2 Lark Daytona convertible

For more events in Central Virginia, go to the Car Club Council of Central Virginia website:

Preston Young, Lee Harrison & Maze Melton, Betty Crawford Linwood Melton & Debbie Jett

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Linwood Crawford & Reggie Nash check out Lee’s Daytona

The group having BBQ on Extra Billy’s patio

More meet photos are on our website!

Central Virginia Chapter

July 1st, 2016 Volume 13, Issue 3

Next Meet July 16th, 2016, Saturday @ 5:00pm

September 10th, 2016, Saturday @ 10:00am

Orange County Cruisers Cruise-In

International Drive Your Studebaker Day

Burger King 15 Orange Village Shopping Center Orange, VA 22960

Blackstone Arts & Crafts Festival Blackstone, VA

Sponsored by the Orange County Cruisers, the cruise-in occurs every 3rd Saturday from April through October. CVC will attend the July cruise-in.

The Central Virginia Chapter will be attending the 47th Annual Blackstone Arts & Crafts Festival in Blackstone, Virginia, for International Drive Your Studebaker Day.

For those who would like to caravan to the event, a group will gather at the Wendy’s at Zion Crossroads.

The festival is held in the historic museum district, just steps from the quaint downtown area. FREE Admission from 10 am to 5 pm. Numerous Arts and Crafts vendors, food vendors, live entertainment on stage, pickles and preserves contest, huge tractor and car show, Kids Zone and petting zoo with barrel train rides, Civil War re-enactment, tours of Schwartz Tavern and the Robert Thomas Carriage Museum, wine tasting and merchant mart.

Directons: From I64 West Bound: Take a right on US 15 North, Exit 136. Stay in right lane and turn right on Camp Creek Parkway at traffic light. Take a right to Sheetz gas station or a left on Market Street at the next traffic light to gather the cars at Wendys for the trip North on US 15 to Orange and the Cruise In. For a more scenic route. take US 250 all the way from Short Pump to Zion Crossroads, then take a right on US 15 North and pass over I64, take the right lane and turn at above traffic lights.

Our Studebakers will be displayed in the car show. We will gather at the 360 Truck Stop, 11201 Patrick Henry Hwy, Amelia Court House, VA, 23002, between 9:00am and 10:00am. The group will leave at 10:00am to drive to Blackstone.

For information on caravanning, contact Preston Young at (804) 457-4048. For cruise-in information, go to:

For Festival information, go to: For driving instructions, go to BlackstoneAnnualArtsAndCraftsFestival/ For driving instructions, go to Commanding Leader Quarterly publication of the

Central Virginia Chapter Studebaker Drivers Club Jim Jett, Editor

Officers: Jim Jett, President Preston Young, Vice-President George Marshall, Treasurer

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Central Virginia Chapter

July 1st, 2016 Volume 13, Issue 3

CVC/SDC Welcomes New Members The Central Virginia Chapter welcomes a new member, Mark Fielding of Surry, Virginia. Mark has a 1951 Studebaker sedan.

Sighted at the Myrtle Beach South Carolina Car Show on March 21st, 2016; 1954 Studebaker Commander custom. Photo provided by Preston Young.

Mark attended the Orphan Car Cruise-In at Extra Billy’s and dined with the group.

Studebaker Sightings Sighted by Preston Young and Linwood Crawford; 1959 Studebaker Silver Hawk, in Louisa County, Virginia. Sighted in “GOTHAM” by Jim Jett; 1963 Studebaker Avanti R-2.

It still has it’s 259 V8 and 3 speed manual transmission, but, the overdrive is missing. If interested in more information on this Hawk, call Preston Young at (804) 457-4048.

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Central Virginia Chapter

July 1st, 2016 Volume 13, Issue 3

CVC Members Out-N-About

CVC Members Studebaker Acquisitions

The April 16th Orange County Cruisers Cruse-In at the Burger King in Orange, Virginia, was attended by Betsy and Preston Young, Betty and Linwood Crawford, Jim Beadle and Fred Meiners. Betsy and Preston drove their 1965 Cruiser, Jim his 1953 2R Pick-up and Fred his 1964 Avanti R-2.

Lee Harrison recently picked-up his new 1960 Lark VIII convertible. Lee’s new Studebaker took a Top 25 Award at the Virginia Classic Cruisers Open Car Show held April 23rd, 2016, held at Chesterfield Town Center.

With Jim Beadle’s 1953 R2 Pick-up and Betsy & Preston Young’s 1965 Cruiser (L-R) Linwood & Betty Crawford and Betsy Young

Jim Jett entered his 1963 GT Hawk R-1 in the 47th annual Richmond AACA Region Car Show and Swap meet held Saturday, June 18th. The GT Hawk was the only Studebaker in the show and took a 3rd place in the 1957-1967 class. Also at the show were CVC members Linwood Melton and Mark Fielding.

Jim Jett’s 1963 GT Hawk R-1

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Central Virginia Chapter

July 1st, 2016 Volume 13, Issue 3

Studebaker Tech Tip

First, you need to know the firing order of the Studebaker V8, because you have to adjust the valves in that order.

Valve Adjustment for the Studebaker V8 “The Studeblogger” Blogspot website, June 18th, 2011 Well, I finally set aside the time to adjust Barney's valves, and got it done today. I should have done this right after the rebuilt engine was brought back to life, but I was hesitant because the job intimidated me, and after all, the car was running, right? But solid-lifter valves need to be properly adjusted in order to maximize efficiency and power. And Barney's gas economy has been, shall we say, less than stellar. I knew it was needed and overdue. Actually "valve adjustment" is a misnomer -- you're not adjusting the valves themselves, but the valve train "lash," or the air gap between the rockers and valve stems when the valves are closed. Of all the maintenance operations in Studebakerdom, I think this one may be the source of the largest amount of questions, concerns and fear. But I learned that it's much easier to actually do the adjustment than it is to read about it! You just gotta get your hands dirty, and it all makes sense. Part of the problem, I think, is that the process is often described, but never illustrated. You'd think that a common operation like this would be thoroughly documented on the Web, but it isn't - so I hope the following illustrated tutorial will help future Studebaker seekers. It'll take about 2 hours to do the job in your garage, if you work like I do. You'll need a spark plug socket, a good set of feeler gauges, a socket set, a 1/2" wrench and a test light. A remote starter The Studebaker V8 in its natural habitat switch is useful too. A tube of anti-seize and silicone grease will come in handy for reinstalling the spark plugs, but they're not necessary.

Firing Order: 1-8-4-3-6-5-7-2

As the illustration shows, the left bank of cylinders (driver's side) has the "odd" numbered cylinders (1,2,5 & 7), while the right bank has the "even" cylinders 2,4,6 & 8), so you'll be moving back and forth from side to side during the adjustment process.

After much reading of various folks' recommendations for adjusting the valve lash, I decided to stick with the factory method outlined in the Studebaker shop manual. Studebaker gives a procedure for adjusting the valves either with the engine hot and running, or stone cold. I chose to do it cold, since I don't like the idea of working on a hot running engine, especially one that's flinging oil around like a congressman spends cash! To start, I numbered the spark plug wires prior to removal so that I'd get them right upon reinstallation, and pulled them off. Then, I removed the valve covers. This is accomplished by removing the nuts from each of the two studs that exit each cover. I laid them across the air cleaner so that I wouldn't have to remove the wires from the built-in clips on the covers. On the left-hand valve cover, there's a spring that provides return tension to the throttle bell crank; I unhooked this from the bell crank and kept it with the valve cover. After the valve covers were off, I removed the spark plugs. I like doing this with the valve covers off, as it provides more room to work .

(continued next page)

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Central Virginia Chapter

July 1st, 2016 Volume 13, Issue 3

Studebaker Tech Tip

Valve Adjustment for the Studebaker V8 (continued) The #6 plug is a little fishy to work around due to the close proximity of the oil dipstick tube; #7 is also a bit tricky because of the master cylinder plumbing. Just work gently to avoid cracking the spark plug insulators during removal and reinstallation.

(UDC stands for Upper Dead Center - Studebaker stuck with this older terminology to the end.) When this mark is exactly under the timing pointer, #1 is at TDC. BUT there's a caveat: in a 4-stroke engine, the cylinder is at the top of the bore on both the compression AND the exhaust stroke. You need to make sure the TDC you're finding is the one just after the compression stroke. The easiest way to do this is to put your thumb over the #1 plug hole and rotate the engine with the remote switch. When your thumb gets blown off the hole, that's the compression stroke! Stop spinning the engine. You'll rotate the engine the rest of the way to TDC by hand - it turns pretty easily with all the plugs out.

All my plugs looked good - normal deposits and nice and clean, except for If you have a fixed radiator fan, the plug from #5 cylinder you can grab the fan blades and (3rd from left, above), turn in order to ease the engine which had some crusty to TDC. But this won't work on ash deposits on it. The engines with clutch-type fans. spark plug guide chart SDC Tech maven Dwain says this is due to a bit too much oil in the cylinder during Grindinger wrote In one of his combustion; I'll have to watch this - could be a leaky valve how-to pieces that you can use a socket wrench on the guide seal. alternator (or generator) pulley to turn the engine, and it works! I also grabbed the crankshaft damper with my right By the way, I'm a big hand and gave it a turn while using the wrench with my left. believer in an orderly This provides the leverage and control needed to move the workspace :) engine a small amount at a time. Now to perform the first valve adjustment. This is done by finding the Top Dead Center of cylinder #1. Top Dead Center is also called "firing position;" it's the point in the engine's rotation just after the compression stroke, during which the spark plug ignites the fuel charge in the cylinder. It's also the point at which both exhaust and intake valves are completely closed. To T find TDC for #1, I connected a remote starter switch to rotate the engine easily. The Studebaker vibration damper has several marks stamped into it; one reads "UDC 1".

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Once you've found TDC for #1, it's time to adjust the valve train. Studebaker mandates a clearance of between 0.025" and 0.027" for cold engine adjustment I split the difference and adjusted to 0.026". To do this, you simply slip the blade of the feeler gauge between the valve stem and the surface of the rocker arm; the adjusting nut is on the opposite arm of the rocker. These are pretty stiff; they're self-locking adjusting nuts so there's no locking nut to loosen - just put your 1/2" wrench around it and go!

(continued next page)


Central Virginia Chapter

July 1st, 2016 Volume 13, Issue 3

Studebaker Tech Tip

Valve Adjustment for the Studebaker V8 (continued) If the feeler slips right into the gap, great. If not, you'll need to loosen the adjusting nut - turn it counter-clockwise to open the gap. You want to feel a bit of resistance as you pull the gauge through the gap, but not too much -- "the feeling should be about the same as putting a table knife through a stick of cold butter," according to an excellent article on valve trains I found on the Century Performance website. All my valves were tight, and had to be opened up in order to get the gauge in. Once it's there, though, small adjustments to the adjuster nut achieve the proper resistance very quickly. Finding TDC is easy with cylinder #1, since its position is marked right on the vibration damper. How do you find TDC for the other cylinders? That where the test light comes in. Look at your ignition coil and find the wire that leads from the coil to inside the distributor - NOT the high-tension wire that leads from the center of the coil to the center of the distributor; the wire you're looking for is a thin (likely black) one that is screwed to one of the two small terminals on the coil. It leads inside the distributor to the points. Connect one of the leads from your test lamp to the post this wire is screwed to; connect the other end of your test lamp to a clean ground.

Remember the firing order? You've just adjusted cylinder #1. Next in the firing sequence is #8, so rotate the engine by hand until the test lamp just lights, and adjust both valves for cylinder #8. Continue to hand-turn the engine and set the valve lash for cylinders 4,3,6,5,7 and 2. After the first couple of valve sets, the process gets incredibly easy. Before you know it, you're done! Now it's time to put it all back together. If your spark plugs are all in good shape, clean them and inspect the gap. I like to smear a little silver anti-seize on the threads to ease removal and protect the threads in the head; I also put a bit of silicone lube inside the spark plug wire boot to make sure they seal well and come off easily later. Put the valve covers back on, reconnect the plug wires and fire it up - you're ready to go! After adjusting the valves, Barney came to life immediately and ran like a top. The difference was amazing - not only did he idle smoother, he warmed up faster. ON the road, there was less engine vibration, and he revved quicker. Also, the usual smell of fuel was missing during my test drive. (I knew Barney was blowing fuel out the back because the exhaust tips are sooty...) My son and I took him for a full-throttle blast through a nearby industrial park (empty on the weekends), and the difference in performance is dramatic -- I actually got rubber in 2nd gear. After doing a valve lash adjustment, be sure to check your timing afterward, as valve adjustment affects timing. I will actually need to lower my idle, since the engine is running so much more efficiently now that the idle speed is noticeably increased.

Now put your key in the car's ignition and turn it on -- No, CVC/SDC apparel available not to "START"! Just the first Items displaying the club logo are available The Polo Shirts are click, to the ignition "ON" to club members. available in White, Navy or Black in Men's position. and Women's style. T-shirts are available in white or black in Men’s and Women’s style.

Now, as you rotate the engine (by hand), the test lamp will illuminate when the CVC/SDC apparel available Items can be distributor's points close. When that happens, you've found ordered and paid for on the club website, go Top Dead Center for the cylinder you're going to adjust. to: MemberStore.html

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Central Virginia Chapter

July 1st, 2016 Volume 13, Issue 3

Studebaker and the Silver Arrow When Albert Erskine completed the purchase of Buffalo New York based Pierce-Arrow in 1928, it was part of the greater plan to have vehicles for all markets. Initial results were positive with Pierce-Arrow sales increasing, but, by the autumn of 1932, when the Silver Arrow project began, the Depression was still worsening and both Pierce and Studebaker were deep in trouble.

(Above) Arthur J. Chanter(?) and Albert Erskine standing by a 1930 PierceArrow in front of the Studebaker Administrative building in South Bend (Below) Factory photos of the 1933 Pierce-Arrow Silver Arrow

Roy Faulkner, former president of Auburn, took over as sales vice president that fall. No sooner had he arrived in Buffalo than he received a call from a young stylist named Phil Wright, who proposed a Pierce supercar. Faulkner endorsed the proposal with Studebaker management in South Bend, which agreed to handle development work. James R. Hughes, Studebaker's chief body engineer, who handled the development, made one drastic change immediately, selecting the 139-inch Pierce-Arrow chassis instead of the 147-inch wheelbase on which Wright had based his clay model, and requisitioning a group of these chassis from Buffalo. Out back, Hughes threw in some ideas of his own, incorporated from a rejected design for a fastback 1933 Commander created by Studebaker stylist J. Herbert Newport: an inset backlight and tapering, pointed rear fenders. The Silver Arrow was thus one of the first cars where the rear had as much styling importance as the front. Evidence suggests that the 1933 Silver Arrow was as fast as its swoopy looks implied. Although curb weight was no less than 5,700 pounds, the factory claimed a top speed of 115 mph, and no one has suggested this was much of an exaggeration. But with a price tag of $10,000, as much as three or four suburban bungalows in 1930, the Silver Arrow would clearly serve dealerships only as inspiration. Only 5 Silver Arrows were produced for the 1933 model year . (continued next page)

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Central Virginia Chapter

July 1st, 2016 Volume 13, Issue 3

Studebaker and the Silver Arrow (continued) With Studebaker going into receivership in 1933, PierceArrow was sold to a Buffalo New York investment group and the two companies moved forward on their own. Pierce produced the Silver Arrow as a model for 1934-1935, but, the advanced styling was gone and it was a more conventional model.

1934 Pierce-Arrow Silver Arrow

1935 Pierce-Arrow Silver Arrow

There can be no doubt that the design of the 1934 Studebaker Land Cruiser was inspired by the Silver Arrow. The wraparound four-piece rear window was especially unique and the fender skirts (referred to as "rear wheel shields" by Studebaker) were probably industry firsts on a mass-produced car. Reference Source:

Photos and articles for Newsletter and Website Do you have any photos of events you attended? Is there an upcoming event you would like to promote? Do you have any interesting information you would like to share? If so, send them to the editor at [email protected] 1934 Studebaker Land Cruiser

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Central Virginia Chapter

July 1st, 2016 Volume 13, Issue 3

Classified Ads Approved Classified Ads are free to all CVC/SDC members and available to non-members for $5 per ad. Ads will be on the website for 90 days and in 1 newsletter unless renewed.

1963 Studebaker GT Hawk

For Sale:

Matching numbered car with the exception of the paint & interior. Copy of the original build sheet from Studebaker.

1941 Studebaker Champion Street Rod Red with gray cloth interior. digital gauges. bucket seats. Vintage air and heat. 350 Chevy engine 350 trans. 8 inch Ford rear. New Mustang 2 front end with new rack. Great driver has been to many Studebaker shows and other shows on east coast. Asking $27,500.00. Call Mike at cell (804) 310-2537.

Car features a factory 289V8 w/four barrel and factory T10 Muncie four speed. Motor was rebuilt back in January 2015 and the transmission has been gone through with new gaskets & seals. Clutch, pressure plate & throw out bearing has been replaced. Documented photos of engine rebuild available . Custom theme goes back to 2007 when the car appeared in Street Rodder Magazine I have the cover and article of same . Cars paint and interior are near perfect as the car has always been garage kept. Bumpers & related trim & bright work show like almost new. Overstuffed seats with matching colors add to theme of the ole school scallop. The fake Lakewood pipes and wide whitewall tires nail the fifties look. This is not a HOT ROD! You are looking at a bone stock custom cruiser. At freeway speeds the motor is pulling around 2300 RPM . Gas mileage is around 16 Mpg. You could drive this car anywhere. The car needs a couple of minor items , they are Weather stripping & Window Fuzzies . The gas gauge is not accurate so it should be looked at. Other than these items the car is excellent considering its 53 Years Old. There is absolutely no rust on this car


Asking $16,000 OBO Contact Carl Rollison, (703) 625-7694 EMAIL: [email protected]

You don't have to own a Studebaker to be a member of the club. If you do, or are just interested in Studebaker automobiles, we would love to have you as a member. You can join and pay membership dues online, or, print and mail the membership application. Membership in the Studebaker Drivers Club is required to join the Central Virginia Chapter. Link to join CVC/SDC: Link to join the Studebaker Drivers Club: Visit our website at


Cookout and Garage Tour September 23rd, 2012 Sunday @ 2:00PM

Lee & Becky Harrison 21281 Rocky Ford Rd Jetersville, VA 23083

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