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1922 Special Six paint question

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Hi B

The original finish used on all cars at that time was oil based paint applied with a brush. This paint took upwards of three weeks to cure, creating a major bottleneck in auto production. Light colours required many coats, which is why Henry Ford went to his "any colour as long as it is black" mantra for a number of years. He found that black covered satisfactorily with just two coats. Virtually all automakers painted fenders black because it reduced the time required to repair body damage. Body colour choices were generally quite limited. The original body colour for your car was probably a very dark blue.

Lacquer finishes became available in 1924. Studebaker began using them in 1925, but apparently did not fully commit until 1927. The number of light colours available on Studes jumped dramatically in 1928. Enamel finishes became available about 1932.


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Guest stude8

I have a 1922 Big 6 Spl 6 catalog and scanned it some time ago, the only color comments are on pg 9 and pg 26. I'll attach reduced res images, they should produce legible text to read in 81/2x11 size. If not PM and I could burn a CD for you. There is a comment on one other page about a touch "Gold" on edges of louvers.




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Yes, I saw the '21 for sale... it's been on once or twice before. I found it once on Craig's list for $22,000.... a bit high, I think.

When I was about 16, a friend's father had an unrestored '22 and it was black, and there is a man about 2 hours from me with an original one that is dark blue. I was just wondering if there were any more colors that it came in, but I guess not. I had planned to paint my 32 Packard a dark blue, and I really don't want both cars the same color....sooo, at this point, I have time to think about it and decide in a few months... things to do before painting on both cars.

I'm sure I'll be having many more questions, and I appreciate everyones help for sure, B

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  • 1 month later...

Hello, I have a 1924 special six and had the same question. I visited the museum archives in South Bend to find out. According to what I was told, my car was available in a blue and a burgundy. My car was black. They further explained that they would start the year with so much of each color and when that ran out the would use what they could get. I have an original Studebaker parts manual that covers from 1922-1925 and in it I found a notation that Studebakers were available in most any custom color. I do know from research that metallics did not come out until about 1927. To me that kind of leaves option to color up to you.

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