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Studebaker M15A-20 "Mr. Potato Head"

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Rear Window Install

In my primary effort to make this truck street legal I am replacing the broken glass. Here are some photos of replacing the rear window. I tried the rope method but that didn't work because the rope cut into the vintage reused moulding. I suspect that the rope method would work fine with new moulding. I have used the rope method in the past with no problems. Si I used the putty knife method which just takes longer...

Window Removed
Glass Installed into Moulding
Window Installation Complete
Wing Window Glass Removed (waiting for setting felt...)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Lights! Action! Drive!

Got the following lights working
1. Parking front & rear
2. Tail, rear only
3. Brake
4. Directional lights, front & rear, right & left
5. Headlights, Hi & Low beam

Still no dash lights and only the amp meter and oil pressure work. Engine temperature is mechanical with a bulb in the engine and a copper tube to the gauge that some one cut and all the ether leaked out... Speedomter works though.

Took a night ride. Weird not having backup lights. 1948 = primitive. The truck didn't come with directional lights, backup lights, or front directional lights.

Here is the radimeter (temperature) gauge bulb removed from the engine:

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

No Synchros & Spur Cut Gears

It's been decades since I had to drive a old school tranny like this one!!! Do I try to double clutch or just try to know when to jam it into gear?

Going for a Quick Ride in the Stude (its not street legal yet...)

I'll get a better video soon, I need to find a way to attach the Droid in a better place and more securely...

Rear End Assembled

I received the bearings yesterday and assembled the rear end. Here is the contact pattern using Persian Blue. Not the best pattern, the pinion needs to move closer to the ring geer. Some day I'll figure out the best way to move the pinion:

Monday, January 17, 2011

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Retirement countdown!!!

Who Said that the Stude M15A-20 Doesn't Have a Personality?

Each wheel lug nuts are different from the other wheels!!!

The right side wheel lug nuts tighten turning to the right
The left side wheel lug nuts tighten turning to the left
The rear lug nuts are 1-1/8" x 16 (1-1/2" socket)
The front lug nuts are 3/4" x 16 (1-1/2" socket)

Why do I care? I'm missing a right rear lug nut... Nuts!!!


I just found out that this vintage of truck has a "Radimeter" instead of a temperature gauge. What's the difference? A temperature gauge has an electrical sending unit mounted in the engine block that connects electrically to a electrical meter in the dash. A radimeter is not electrical at all. It has a bulb in the engine block that is connected to the dash gauge through a tube. The whole thing, meter, bulb, and tube are one unit filled with an alcohol solution.

Why do I care? Well someone cut the tube at the firewall and the bulb is AWOL!!!

How do I fix it? Convert to electrical? Research...

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Added Oil Filter

Bought a filter off ebay and installed it:

This oil filter was an option back in 1948. It appears that the truck had one but some one removed it to add a "torque bar" that I removed. Radiator hose is off cause I am also installing a new thermostat that some one removed.

I also ordered electric wiper motors, arms and blades. I am replacing the vacuum motors with electric:

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Pinion Dilemma Solved

OK, I got the bearing off. Had to grind it off. Tried freezing the whole pinion in the freezer and heating just the bearing race but that didn't work:

Also, here is the dead mouse I found under the seat. It seems that he made a nice nest out of the seat stuffing. No matter, I plan on reupholstering the seat anyway...

Friday, January 7, 2011

What this blog is about

I started this blog to chronicle the plight of the restoration (of sorts) of my 1948 Studebaker M15A-20 stake bed dually:

I had quite a hassle getting it from Oregon, most of the carriers did not want to haul a wide vehicle. Actually, I think it was because this vehicle is less than appealing... I bought this truck from Mark off of ebay.

So, I got the truck and I am now trying to get it street legal in Virginia. I now have a registration and antique plates. There is a lot wrong with it. First, the engine needed a lot of work and will need to be rebuilt sometime in the near future mostly because it burns oil (shot oil rings). Fortunately, I like rebuilding engines.

Here is a list of things I have done:

1. Rebuilt carburetor
2. Repaired heat riser valve
3. Repaired oil pump
4. Repaired vacuum and mechanical distributor advances
5. Replaced plug wires (not very necessary but I wanted super wires)
6. Removed unauthorized torque strap
7. Replaced oil bypass valve
8. Replaced rear motor mount
9. ebay'd air filter
10. Replaced busted shift knob with the knob from my old F250 4x4 (same shift pattern)

I am now in the process of repairing the pinion inner bearing on the differential. Here is what it looked like when I removed it:

As you can see, the tapered roller bearing cage is all gone and the rollers are flopping around willy- nilly. Good news is that I have new bearings coming from ebay. There was not a drop of lube in the differential!!! I am also replacing the points with a magnetic pickup and a super coil. I am hoping that the combo (along with MSD wires) will cut threw the oil... Also I working on a wiper replacement. The original wipers are vacuum actuated and really suck when pulling a load uphill (vacuum goes to zero when engine is under a big load). Fortunately, there are a several electrical options.

I have got new glass for the wings and rear window, I now have to order the rubber for them.

Oh, did I say that ALL the electrical needs to be redone? About the only thing that works is the ignition, the generator, the horn, and the heater. Everything else: kaput!

Start of this blog

Well, here is my first post...RYRYRYRY The little brown fox jumped over the lazy dog's back...