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Hey Chris, your car is looking great! Adding the small shiny things does really bring out the best and give a finished look to things. When I worked in design for consumer electronics we call them 'jewels'- just little bright shinies in the right spot to finish off the look.

Well, I did go to Carlisle Saturday. Left at 2 AM, got there at 6 so we went to breakfast first. Got my tires- I went bias ply as I talked to the guys at Coker and they confirmed my suspicion about rim width. Said it could be done but the tires would bulge funny and maybe have trouble staying on down the road with the unnatural loading on the bead and sidewall. Took two wheels off tonite but I am too close to the 31 Hupp on the other side to get the jack under the frame and have room to crank it up. May have to use a bottle jack or something.

I am also trying to decide about powder coat on the rims vs. paint. I always hear wheels flex a lot but how much? I know paint can flex and even take additives to make it flexible. I know powder chips and cracks after which the rust worms work their magic out of sight behind the finish coat until it is too late to save. But I have also heard PC can flex quite a bit. Once again any personal experiences out there with wheels and PC? I love the knowledge base here!!

Thanks,

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thought I would check in for a moment - still here but being otherwise kept busy at work. I've been getting a hankering to buy a new car, I do that every few years because, well, just because. I guess I get bored with my current daily driver and want another daily driver. Job situation one not to hold me back, I stopped by the local Chevy dealer last night and had a look at the Volt. I was intrigued when Chevrolet started down the path toward the Volt back in 2009 or so, and I followed the progress along, even signing up for regular updates. When the day finally came that the first Volts arrived on showroom floors I was dismayed by the price ($45,000!). As the sharks on Shark Tank would say, "I'm out". Too rich for my blood. So, this year they dropped the price quite a bit, and with other incentives, along with a $7500 tax credit (!) on your next tax return, I figured I could make the plunge. I liked what I saw at the dealership, although there are some things I did not like, and was excited that the deal may happen. Then, last night, after what the politicians call a, ahem, "frank discussion", with my wife, things started to go the other way. I slept on it.

Then today, having taken the day off, I headed over to the storage unit to visit my "real" dream car. Ah, it's been too long. We headed out and cruised around, the stress and worries melting away. I've said it before and I'll say it again, that car runs like a dream. At one point I found myself in a pack of bunched up speeding cars. With a huge construction dumpster hauling behemoth truck beside me bouncing all over the place. Not a safe place to be, so I gave the old champion some rein and she took it all. I no longer had anyone around me. It took me back to the days of brother Brian's '64 R2 on the Beltway. Fond memories all over again.

The Volt will have to wait - I'm gonna spend my spare money (such as it is) on the Avanti. :)

Edited by SeventhSon (see edit history)
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Speaking of neglect, I then turned my attention to the door panel. I made a mixture of water, bleach, TSP, a little soap and put it in a spray bottle. I soaked the door panel and gave it a decent cleaning - removing the mold spores and mildew that had grown over time. After I was (pg 26, 2012)

Hey Chris- I am ready to put my seats back in (finally got warm enough to glass here) but then I looked around. I have some mold and mildew stains on the seats I might as well clean up. I found the above from you in 2012 and wondered two things: How well did it work and what was the mixture 'recipe'? I do not want to spot bleach my black seats by using too strong a mix.

Thanks,

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Well, I stopped a few places on the way home from work tonite looking for TSP and learned another lesson in the wacky world of New York environmental correctness. My last stop was the local hardware owned by a high school friend. He said "No, I don't have TSP, they outlawed selling it 5-6 years ago. BUt I will show you what I can sell you." We walk over to the shelf and he hands me a pint can of TSP-PF. I asked what it is and hesays "it is TriSodium Phosphate- Phosphate Free" What is the point? The good cleaning agent in TSP is the phosphates so NY bans them as a water pollutant! Why have the product without them on a shelf? Would anyone buy it?

I also got a really good price to powder coat my wheels from a friend who does it for at his business. Only thing is, they don't have a correct color. Another guy said Ford Wimbledon White from the 60's is a very close match to the original wheel color. So I am off- flying thru the marvels of the Internet in search of the right color powder now!

Cheers!

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Hey Bill - good to hear you are making progress with the Avanti. I didn't use a set recipe for the cleaner, just mixed a little of this and that. I would say 3 cups of water, a quarter cup of bleach, a tablespoon or two of TSP, and a squirt of liquid soap. Mix it up good in a spray bottle and test a small area that you want to clean. Spray a little on the area and use a soft brush to lift the dirt and work on the mold - you might have to spray a little more on as you work. And make sure you rinse the area you are cleaning with a rag soaked in clean water - you don't want the bleach staying on the surface.

Sorry to hear that TSP isn't available in New York - I'm not even sure if it is available here in Virginia anymore either. The stuff I used was some that I had left over from a house painting project from over 20 years ago! There are probably suitable replacements out there though.

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Well, I finally got a good, almost all car weekend and made progress! The seats are in the Avanti, the battery is charging as we speak and the wheels are all stripped for powder coat. I ordered the PC material and it should be here tomorrow then off to the PC'er. In putting the seats back I cleaned and de-mildewed the interior as best I could in limited light. I know I will find more when she rolls into the daylight.

Later today I went over and brought Overland from winter storage. I have to get ready for the big parade this coming Memorial Day. Carried Teddy Roosevelt last year and he liked it better than the 13 Studebaker before that. The old girl took a drink of fuel right down the throat and fired right up! Thought we might have to push her out of the trailer and into the garage but started on the second crank and backed her out. Got some mildew cleanup to do here too. Did not know trailer interiors are bad for mildew but all the leather is a mess, so I get to clean this week.

I also spent a few hours yesterday and all morning today working on routes fxor a weekend HCCA local region tour we are hosting June 21 weekend. Made some headway but not done. Friday a I called the manufacturer I have been working with on weatherseal for the 31 Hupp. Finally got good news there too- he had shipped new samples off the new tool that day. Looks like the brown or Fedex guy will be bring Xmas early tomorrow or Tuesday. Yea!!

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Well, the Avanti visits are hard to come by these days. Working in the field, handling the office tasks, and fighting a cold (or maybe it's allergies) has kept me just stuck to the routine. Get up, go to work, come home, shower and eat, try to sleep. Repeat.

But I did take advantage of the nice weather and headed over to the storage unit this evening. Last time I drove the old Avanti (too long ago) I stopped a couple of times during the drive, found a shady spot and cut the engine and just sat there enjoying the day and watching the world go by. When I went to fire the engine after the first time I stopped I noticed a slight slowness to the cranking. Hmmmm, could the battery be starting to fail, I wondered? I drove some more, then pulled over to a shady spot and shut her off. When I went to fire the engine after a while, the same thing as before, a bit of slow cranking. Like the battery was going.

I headed back to the storage unit, and, as usual, examined the car for any anomalies, leaks, fires, small mammals caught in the grill, that sort of thing. As I examined the engine compartment I noticed the alternator belt was loose. Really loose. Ah, well, there's the "battery" problem - the loose belt is not allowing the alternator to charge the battery fully. It'll keep enough charge going to keep the ammeter from going into negative territory, but not enough charge for the battery to stay full. Same problem occurred on my Volvo P1800E one really cold night, leaving me stranded and calling for help.

So, I figured the adjusting bolt was loose, which it was, and I set about tightening the slack in the belt and drawing down the bolt. Except it wouldn't tighten - stripped. Yay. That's a sarcastic yay, by the way. So, I buttoned up the shop and made a mental note to bring some supplies with me on the next trip to fix the problem. Today I brought with me a longer adjustment arm bolt, along with washer, lock washer, and nut. I just screwed the bolt all the way through the threaded mount on the alternator, then added a lock washer and nut to tighten everything down. Belt tight, alternator tight. I got in and fired her up - the ammeter needle was halfway over in the positive side. Yep, she's charging.

After that, it was cruise time! Ran like a top - gotta do this more often, all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Nothing happening in Avanti World these days, as I am entrenched in various work duties. I did take her out last Sunday for a cruise - ran nice and strong. I guess that 3 decade long rest she had really did her some good. I've been thinking it's about time I brought the old car home for some maintenance and such. Have to make it soon. I was going to take her over to Dover at the end of the month for the international Studebaker show, but that fell through. So, it'll be staying close to home for me and getting as many cruises in as I am allowed - hopefully it will be a lot!

In closing, I just want to give thanks to the Greatest Generation, who rose to the challenge 70 years ago today and started that long march to bring the world back from the edge of catastrophe. On a day none so as important before or since, our heroes stood to the challenge and turned the tide. It took months of hard fighting and bracing sacrifice, but the boys, nay, men​, did it. For us. I can't thank you fellows enough - our hearts belong to you.

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In closing, I just want to give thanks to the Greatest Generation, who rose to the challenge 70 years ago today and started that long march to bring the world back from the edge of catastrophe. On a day none so as important before or since, our heroes stood to the challenge and turned the tide. It took months of hard fighting and bracing sacrifice, but the boys, nay, men​, did it. For us. I can't thank you fellows enough - our hearts belong to you.

Amen to that Chris.......amen to that.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks Paul, and a Happy Father's Day to those dads out there who made us who we are today. This being Father's Day, I decided to take the old Avanti out for a remembrance run. I headed up by a local landmark historic house that holds an annual car show for Father's Day. I thought about stopping in as a spectator, but I was really just itching to drive the old car, so I turned south and figured I would head out to the bucolic countryside where the moneyed folks live so I could get some photos with the car.

However, about halfway there I saw the road that led in the direction of the National Cemetery and I peeled off there, deciding at that moment to go see my father. We headed down Route 234 south. I was looking for a back road that runs through the Marine Corps base to the cemetery. It turns out my sense of direction was dialed in today. I took a couple of shaded country roads and just about when I was unsure of where I was and pulled over to consult the map I learned that another quarter mile ahead was the road that led to the cemetery. We were on our way, rumbling down the two lane shady lane. The old car likes that sort of road - the temperature gauge dropped to 170 and stayed there for the 9 miles to the cemetery. About a mile away from our destination I was surprised to see a car right on my tail, so close that I couldn't even see what kind of car it was. The driver (a woman) kept right on my bumper until I turned into the cemetery entrance. I decided to give her a wave, and, not wanting to expend the energy to hold up all 5 fingers, I opted for the more economical one finger :rolleyes:. We had reached our destination.

Lots of other folks were there today, no doubt to visit their departed dads too. I found a shady spot near my father's grave site and parked the Avanti. The old car got lots of looks and a couple of thumbs up. I had another gentleman stop and ask what that car is. It was a nice visit - perfect weather for the visit, and I just stood at my father's site and marveled at the beauty of it all. Our government's thanks to a veteran for his service. I'm so glad this spot was chosen for such a place of honor - it truly is a beautiful and humbling place to visit.

Soon we were headed back toward the storage unit. The old girl ran like a champ again and we logged almost a hundred miles. Her longest trip from home so far. The only troubling incident (other than my friendly neighborhood tailgater) was one point when I went to start her up and the starter really dragged. Would barely crank over. Looks like it's time to pull that and get a rebuild. I sure hope I don't have to drop the exhaust to get that done.

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Edited by SeventhSon (see edit history)
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Chris - your Avanti looks great. If I haven't told you, the color you chose is excellent. She is meant to be subtle until riled. Once riled, she's ... - you fill it in Chris! Enjoy the beautiful weather and thank you for the pictures of another VA treasure. I appreciate seeing the grace and beauty, being I'm employed by the VA, times 20+ years. :)

Chuck

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Thanks for the compliment Chuck! Yes, I believe she wears it well - the paint job turned out really well for what I spent. Of course, she won't be winning any trophies upon close inspection, but she looks good rolling down the road!

And thank you for your service with the VA. I am really happy with the VA cemetery (and I believe the rest of my family is as well) - I feel it's a real honor for those who served to have their final resting place in one of the National Cemeteries. The ones I have visited are really beautiful places and well kept. The folks who work with the VA should be proud of how they take care of them.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thought I'd share.

While parking to go into my local parts store, look over and see a fellow walking away from this.

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Snapped these shots and caught up with the owner inside the store.

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Seems he bought it locally 30 years ago and brought it to the condition you see today. As we were both in a hurry the conversation was short but great. Figures it is the only 63 here in town (by registry info) and was planning to make the national meet this year. I told him about your thread here on the Forums and hopefully he will see what you have done too.

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That's right Pat, mine is green.

Not to highjack this threat but it is amazing just how many Whippets (and Cabriolet's) are out there. If I'm right, the one you show is on YouTube.

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Hi Doug - thanks for the post. That's a nice Avanti, 4 speed too. But no supercharger, it looks like. Also, it must be a transitional model, when they were going from '63 to '64 model year, since it has the square headlights. It's always nice to see one of these special cars fixed up and out and about. :)

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  • 1 month later...

Greetings from Avanti Land, where absolutely nothing is going on with the old rocket ship, other than driving around here and there. Last I posted I was talking about checking into getting the starter rebuilt, which was right before the International Studebaker meet in Dover, Delaware. No sense in trying to contact anyone that week, I figured, as they would be all off at the meet. Meanwhile, work took all my spare time, as I traveled to various sites and took care of the tasks at hand, working through quite a few days of withering heat. Soaked through and through at the end of the day (well, halfway through the day, actually)

In between taking care of business I was able to change the oil in the work truck and also fix the center armrest, which had become mangled from 16 years of my big a$$ leaning on it all the time (pictures below). So, I found a scrap of plywood and cut it to size, stopped by a fabric store and picked up some upholstery material, salvaged some foam from the mangled armrest, and threw together an armrest. Not the best armrest I've seen, but I can lean on it without my elbow being in the storage compartment underneath the armrest. Until I can rig up a latch for it I have it held closed with a wrap of surveyor's flagging.

One day, I was supposed to ride out to John Feser's and drop off some steel tubing I had left over from making a fuel return line on my Avanti so he could make one for his Avanti. The night before, I printed out directions to his house (way out there in the country), and even posted on his thread (Avanti Refresh, by unimogjohn) that I was coming over the next day. Shortly after that post went up, I started feeling "not so good". Not too long after that I felt "really not so good". Sparing the gory details, the next few hours were hell (food poisoning, I suppose), sleep finally came in the middle of the night. By morning I wasn't feeling like driving out to the country, so I just popped the steel tubing coil in a box and sent it off to John. That was the extent of my exertion for that day.

I've taken a few rides in the old Avanti since I've posted last - I've logged a couple of hundred miles and she's run fast and steady the whole time. On one trip the wildlife was out, as I cruised through a business park (quiet because it was a Sunday), I saw up ahead a doe with two fawns crossing the road ahead. I slowed to a crawl as the fawns stopped and stared at the whistling beast. They scampered into the woods, probably at some signal from Ma, whilst she jump-flipped 180 degrees to face the strange beast rumbling by. I gave the old car some gas and moved along, not wanting to upset the mama deer any more than she already was, as she might have jumped up on the hood and scratched the paint. I traveled no more than a quarter mile further, and here comes another doe crossing the road, this time with a single fawn bringing up the rear. This couple stopped in the median strip and watched intently as the whistling alien cruised by.

I drove the old car again today - about 50 miles, and she was perfect. Strong and steady the whole time. I know there's a ton of stuff I should be doing to the car - work takes most of the time, and the little time I have left I just wanna drive! So that's what I'm doing for now - hopefully I'll be able to bring the car home sometime and do some under hood stuff that needs addressing. Whenever that happens I'll be posting it here - heck, I'll try to post anyway! post-81474-143142654286_thumb.jpg

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  • 2 months later...

Greetings, car enthusiasts! Long time since I have posted - work has kept me too busy and worn out to do much with the Avanti. I have been getting the old car out every ten days or so and running her up and down the highway - as the days between drives stretches out I get depressed and think, "Well, maybe I'll just sell the car." Then I get to the storage unit and fire her up and hit the road and feel the power and hear the supercharger whistling. And I think, "I'm NEVER selling this car!" So, I have to make sure I get regular drives in so I don't let the wrong thoughts get into my head.

Today I was able to get to a Fall Festival, scores of which are being carried on around the nation. This particular one happened to have a car show attached, so I was in seventh heaven. After arriving at the site, I headed toward the cars, which at the early hour were kind of sparse. but I did spot one car that I was immediately drawn to. A '62 Chevrolet Biscayne - I sidled up to the car and looked at the badge on the front fender. "409" she read. Oh yeahhhh, I thought. The hood was closed, so I thought it may have been a fake out - a badge just put on to make people think it was something it was not. I checked the interior - yep, 4 speed on the floor. I looked at the exhaust - duals turned out to the side behind each rear wheel. So far, so good, I thought. I approached a man standing nearby and asked if it was his car. "Yep." "Is it really a 409?" "You bet", he answered, opening the hood and revealing the legendary motor. Oh my, I thought, how many years has it been since I saw one of these?

We talked for quite awhile - I asked him if it was fast. He said it was, but you had to be mindful of the RPM's, being a big block you gotta hit the gears when it was time. he said it had monster torque, which is understandable, what with all those cubes. Terrific car with a terrific motor. As we spoke, a rumble approached from down the street. A Plymouth Sport Fury pulled into the lot and backed into space by the Biscayne. "Looks like a race getting ready to happen", I said. Mr. Biscayne laughed and said that the Sport Fury has a 426 hemi in it. And it sounded like it - just a raw powerful sounding machine. I looked at the engine - it said 426 on the valve covers, but it didn't look like it had the hemi chambers so identifiable on Mopars. I don't know that much about Mopars, so I'm not sure. Maybe someone can tell from the pictures I will post.

I headed up the street, stopping to check out all the various old iron (and some new). I will post some pics. My favorite old car present? Has to be the Biscayne, just because of the old 409. She's so fine, that 409. My favorite new car? The blue Corvette, for reasons that do not have to be explained. :D

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Some other old cars there - lots of interest in the hobby, I'm glad to say. I guess us old guys keep it going. Just one Studebaker there - a '63 Lark that the owner has had since 1972. He had a whole book of pictures of the frame off restoration done not too long ago. The last picture in the book was a pic of him and his bride in the car leaving for their honeymoon after getting hitched in 1973. My Avanti didn't make it there for reasons of distance and other factors, but the Lark gentleman encouraged me to get it out to some Studebaker shows. I need to do that....

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My dream car when I was a kid. Dad was a Mopar guy and I was until I drove a friends 69 Grand Prix. A month later my 65 Belvedere convertible was sold and I had the first of a few Grand Prix's. I have a neighbor that has a heavily hot rodded 64 Sport Fury. Rattles the windows when he takes it out.

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Several years ago in Cornwall, ON at the all Chrysler show there was a '63 Plymouth like this done up as a drag car sitting on a trailer pulled by a '63 Plymouth wagon. Both had Max Wedges in them. Very, very nice display. I'll look to see if I have photos.

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Thanks for the info, everyone. I could tell it was a powerful machine when it showed up - sounded really good. It's possible I heard the guy wrong when I thought he said HEMI - I was a bit light headed from all the high octane fumes in the area.:D Nothing like it - sort of like being at a NASCAR race.

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I headed over to the storage unit tonight to do a couple of things to the Avanti in preparation of taking it to the Cars and Coffee gathering tomorrow morning. Plan is all green for go - I'm hoping all goes well and I can have a good trip there, probably 30 or 40 miles.

Since unimogjohn has been working on the battery in his Avanti I've been getting kind of spooked about my battery. I've been researching batteries online, so when the time comes I will know which direction to go in. I'm going to stick with a conventional battery next time - by that I mean a regular size battery like you see in most cars. I will move away from the long narrow 3EE unit that fits right in the allotted space, but is a bit weak to turn over all the motor and supercharger in the car. So, when the time comes I will install a conventional battery tray (making sure to not alter anything that can't be undone) and fit a nice battery with approximately twice the CCA's of the 3EE.

Tonight I checked the water level in the 3EE - it was fine. I removed the terminals and cleaned them along with the posts. I checked the fluids, added a half quart of oil, then moved on to the front parking/signal lights. The last time I drove the car two weeks ago I noticed that both lights were out. Hmmm, maybe a fuse since both were out? So tonight I checked the fuses (a real trick for a, ahem, rather large guy like myself). I couldn't find any fuses out, so I moved to the parking lights (which I probably should have done first). I pulled the left lens - the bulb was out of the socket and laying on its side. Won't work like that! I pulled the right lens - the bulb was in the socket, but barely. So, I worked on both bulbs, fiddling around trying to get them to lock into place. The sockets have seen better days - looks like a new set will have to be installed soon. I was able to get the left bulb to go into place and hold, but I don't have much hope that it will stay put. The right side was the Queen of Spades, so I pulled out the WD40. Things went together after that, and the bulb burned much brighter than the left side. I think I will use the WD40 on the left side also.

I fired the old car up and pulled it out of the unit just as dusk was falling. I did a light check - all good. A man who was at one of the units down the row soon approached. "I thought that was an Avanti," he said. We talked cars for a bit - he has a '57 Chevy out west and a couple of other cars in the works. He said he acquired a 1947 Hudson pickup truck for a friend - I told him I don't think I had ever heard of one of those. I found a couple of pictures online and am posting them below (if they are sized right).

I headed out for a short ride and some gas, so I can head over to the Cars and Coffee event in the morning. Early. I'll need that coffee.

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Chris, good for ya' on getting those lights right.....and ......considering a "real" battery instead of that nearly un-lift-able rascal Studebaker put in there for us, ha ! The one thing I never was satisfied with while we had ours for all those years were the tail/ brake lights. Our little stock, wore out, 6 volt (Lucas) 48 Anglia has brighter lamps ! I could not believe it the 1st time I followed Karen in the Avanti. I polished, then painted the lamp areas silver, then white, then put in recommended Harley lamps, and perhaps a couple of other things, but they are SO inadequate ! I don't like them, but if a car ever needed a bright, 3rd, stop light, Avanti's qualify at the top ! Take care, enjoy the trip, and romp on it !

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Chris and John- I guess I am the odd man out on this battery issue. My 3EE is seven years old, still cranks the old girl fine with mostly original wiring. As an advocate of originality I have had no problem with the 3EE, placement, longevity or function, in my Avanti. My start problem is with the AFB not being set up right. It cranks hard and has flat spots in the secondary so I need to set it up right next summer. Once started the choke circuit works fine and when the 4 barrel opens it is pure sweetness, I love the throatiness of the exhaust every time!!

On a sad note I put the Avanti to bed for the season today. It is always sad when the last toy goes down but it is a where we live.... Ran about 20 miles to get rid of most of the ethanol gas and storing the old girl at about 1/8 tank with stabilizer. All the toys are now in for the winter and yard work beckons......

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Hi John Byrd! I did romp on it a couple of times in the last 24 hours, but gotta keep the romping to a minimum. Johnny Law and all, ya know! Now that you mention the tail lights I have something else to add to the list - getting the LED replacement set and getting some brighter lights in the back! And a third light might not be a bad idea either.

Bill, it's weird, some folks have great luck with the 3EE, some folks not so much. I guess I fall in the middle - my battery still starts the old girl and as long it does I'll keep it in there. But when she goes I'm gonna get at least an 800 CCA unit (see below for the reason). And my condolences on having to put your toys away so early - my gosh, it's not even Thanksgiving yet! (Or Halloween even!) I hope to take my Avanti out for a Christmas drive :D

Today, I got up before the crack of dawn and fetched the Avanti and took a ride out to the country to be a part of the first Cars and Coffee in the local town where unimogjohn lives, along with his cars buddies, Wayne and Steve (among others). Probably a dozen cars were there, not bad for a first time event - I got to see Wayne's '64 Corvette Stingray up close for the first time, along with Steve's '67 Camaro. And a '41 Plymouth woodie, which definitely looked like a surfboard belonged on top. A couple of newer Vettes, a Mustang or two, and a '32 Ford (?) hotrod that was nice and simple and clean, but very wicked sounding. Oh, and 2 Avantis, mine and unimogjohn's. Which John demonstrated the new, powerful battery setup he has now - one crank and she fires. That's 800 CCA's for ya! Speaking of John, I hope he got some pics to put on his thread, because I plumb forgot to (told ya it was an early morning) :rolleyes:

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  • 5 weeks later...

November 24 - Thanksgiving in a couple of days, then before you know it another year will be in the books. Speaking of, Saturday marked the 3rd anniversary of the old Avanti arriving in Virginia from Texas. She's come a long way since that night time arrival - I was beside myself with what I had gotten myself into. But she turned out all right - a fine running car that deserved another chance to roam the highways.

Today the temperatures nudged over 70 degrees (sorry Chicago) and at lunchtime I made the trek to the storage unit to take care of a couple of things I have wanted to get done. Every time I go to visit old Mightyfast I end up just firing her up and going cruising. Well, can't neglect maintenance issues or she'll leave me sitting someday. So I resolved to hit a couple of things today that needed to be done. I started out utilizing a little tip from unimogjohn - I took a hand pump mechanism from a bottle of lotion, cleaned it out really well by pumping a bunch of soapy water and then clear water through it. Then I used it to pump the oil out of the supercharger - it worked really well. A couple of minutes and the old transmission fluid was out and ready for fresh fluid. Felt good to get that accomplished.

Next I worked on removing the fuel filter so I could replace it. I took a plastic packaging "clamshell" piece to catch any gasoline that might drip out and positioned it below the filter. I removed the hose clamps, but the hoses were pretty much petrified onto the steel lines. I believe that's a result of the ethanol gas, plus the high temps under the hood. No problem - I just sawed the hoses into pieces with my trusty multi-tool pocket knife contraption. Before long I had the old filter off - not much gas to deal with, just a few drops, I assume the fuel evaporates after the car sits for a few days. Pretty soon I had the new filter on and it was time for a drive! I was kind of worried about the battery being up to the task, since the last week has been pretty cold. But she cranked her and before long the motor roared to life. We were off!

Had a nice drive - only about 20 miles, but she really loved her fresh filter and supercharger oil. Ran really strong - at one point I had to get out onto Route 28 (AKA "The Speedway") and I got on her pretty strong. I could feel the rear tires spin all the way through the gears, but she really can go when you ask her to. Of course, I only was trying to get out into traffic :rolleyes: - then I settled into a nice cruise along with everyone else. A great drive!

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Well, thank you Chuck, for the kind words. Sorry I've been rarely posting - I've got lots I want to do with the Avanti, just don't have the time to do it, due to work constraints. But keep checking - I'll try to post whenever possible (but I doubt I'll approach John's 200,000+ thread!). And a Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours as well!

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  • 1 month later...

Hello folks! Absolutely nothing happening with the Avanti, except a couple of quick drives. I got to drive it the Sunday before Christmas, just as a head cold was starting to take hold of me. So, Christmas was marred by sore throat and cough and fever - the usual fun. Took a couple of weeks to get past it - by then the holidays were over! Ain't that a kick in the head?!

A couple of days ago, after the old car sat for almost a month, I was able to get her back out on the road. I hooked up the jumper cables and cranked a bit, but before you know it she was ready to rumble! Out we went - just like old times. Ran like a champ! I can't wait for spring to get here - this winter has worn out it's welcome :mad:

Anyhow, I was just wondering if anybody could tell me what kind of car is in the pictures below. I was watching an old Alfred Hitchcock show and noticed the odd looking car in the background. I've seen this model before - just not sure what it is. It's not an old Ford or Mercury, is it?

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  • 7 months later...

Every once in a while my job has some rewards. Occasionally I'll get an assignment to head out to a property to do some surveying, and as the door swings shut behind me I hear the words, "Oh, and I believe the guy has some old cars...." Doesn't happen often enough, but when it does it is pure heaven for me. Like the time I was sent to a client's property (actually a friend, or rather a Brother Rat, of my boss), who happens to have 4 Ferraris, all neatly protected in a climate controlled garage. Or another property whereupon the neatly kept garage building contained a 1965 Aston Martin DB5, among other gems. Makes me want to weep....

 

This week brought another such job, this one containing a car much closer to my heart, a 1963 Avanti R2, the second one ever made. And I got to actually see it up close! In its climate controlled home, resplendent in Avanti White, I met the Holy Grail. A car whose rough and tumble existence for the last 4 decades or more should have invited, nay, insisted that it be carried to the closest junkyard and put out of its misery. But no, the illustrious Dave Kinney (if you've read Hagerty insurance magazine, you've read Dave Kinney), got a hook in this fish and wouldn't let her go. Unsure that he even had a car, a couple and a half decades passed before Dave could finally get his find to Virginia.

 

A couple and a half decades the forlorn car sat unattended, until one day someone decided that they owned it and put it up for sale. Someone told Dave about an "ugly orange parts car" for sale and Dave figured that it might, just might, be the one he bought so many years ago and could never get to Virginia. Soon, Dave made his rightful ownership known and the car was soon on its way to a restoration shop. A few years later, this gem is in Virginia. And I got to see it, pristine from its glass headlight covers to its 1962 Manufacturers licence plate (where do people find this stuff?) Of course, my time with the baby was too short (always is), but I will always cherish the fact that I had the opportunity. Plus, I have my own rough and tumble baby, Mightyfast, to keep me company.

 

Check out the link, courtesy of Bob Johnstone's Studebaker Page, that shows the before and after. Almost ridiculous the transformation - what isn't ridiculous is the tenacity of some people, thank God.

 

http://www.studebaker-info.org/AVDB1/R1000/63R1002/63R1002.html

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  • 1 month later...

Checking in again today after another long hiatus - the usual excuse being work, work, work of course. Besides the occasional drive-around every couple of weeks, I haven't had the time or energy to "get after it" and get anything accomplished. Such is life - no workie, no funnie. 

 

Finally today I built up the resolve to get to the storage unit and get after something I have been meaning to take care of, and that is replacing the carburetor gasket. The one I put on three plus years ago has begun to leak apparently, as wet gas is present on the intake manifold after taking a run. That plus the near overwhelming smell of gas in the cabin whilst taking that run - sometimes causing me to hang my head out the window like a dog in order to regain consciousness.

 

Removal of the carburetor was straightforward enough - just unhooking the various vacuum lines and throttle linkage and fuel line. Soon enough the unit was off - after a bit of gentle prying where the old gasket had glued itself to the manifold. I cleaned up the manifold where the carb bolts on, scraping any old gasket material off and making sure it would seal the new gasket (I hope). I turned my attention to the old gasket still stuck to the carb - more prying and it came off. Just as I thought - the gasket was petrified. Understandable, given the harsh environment it has spent the last few years.

 

I fetched the gasket that Dave Tbow sent along with the carburetor he rebuilt. Originally I used a gasket I had bought from Studebaker International - at the time I got the carb back from Dave T. I saw he had included a gasket. So I had two - flip a coin to decide which one to use and save the other. Came in handy today - I hope the new one works well. 

 

Re-assembly was straightforward as well, just put it all back together and make sure all all hoses and linkage are connected. I wanted to torque the mounting nuts but found that I did not have a 3/8" extension for the socket anywhere in all my tools. Left them all at home. Oh well, I'll torque them next time before I take her out.

 

I still have a few things I would like to do before taking her out on the road. I have to work on the positive battery cable connection to the starter relay - when cranking the motor for a bit til she fires I'm still getting a hot positive battery cable, indicating resistance. I'm going to try a good cleaning and and a new cable before I start replacing parts. That fun is coming up....

 

Hopefully I can get the old girl straightened away for Cars and Coffee next week that John Feser (unimogjohn) invited me to. Speaking of - where is John? Missing his daily reports from the new car shed on his farm.

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Edited by SeventhSon (see edit history)
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Sunday, November 1, 2015. Halloween behind us, an extra hour bestowed upon us (where'd that come from?!), and the "Holiday Season" fast approaching. With my extra hour in my pocket (What did you do with yours?) I gathered up a bunch of tools and headed out to the storage unit, fairly early.

 

I was supposed to make the 30 mile trek to a Cars and Coffee event that unimogjohn invited me to. Unfortunately the weather, as it is wont to do, wasn't cooperating. The raindrops were falling and had been since early dark thirty. Puddles and wet pavement abounded everywhere - it didn't bode well for the old Avanti making a trek anywhere. The old girl has enough rust issues without me adding highway spray to the mix. So I resolved to continue my repairs of last week.

 

After a breakfast stop I headed into the storage facility and started working on the positive battery cable, removing it from its spot on the starter relay. Good golly, Miss Molly! Looks like Halloween decided to stick around for a bit, what with the scary looking battery cable! Wow, I knew it was having some resistance issues, but I didn't realize it was nearly destroyed. Time for a new cable, I supposed. Things got so hot at the relay that the connector for the hot ignition wire melted through! Yikes!

 

Before heading out to pick up a new cable I cleaned up the battery terminals and the lug (?) on the relay. That really needed some attention - I brushed it repeatedly with a small brass wire brush, sprayed a little WD40 on it, and generally got it cleaned up for a new cable. I just squeezed the gap closed that had burned through the ignition connector - I didn't want to bite off more fun than I could deal with today. Off I went to the nearby "supercenter box store" to pick up a few things, a battery cable, an extension for my 3/8" socket (still didn't bring one so I could torque the carburetor nuts), and a couple of other things. No battery cable, at least not one that would work, but I did find a pack of three socket extensions,  3", 6", & 9" ones which will now reside in the tool bag so I will have them. Remind me where I put them next time I'm looking for one. That was a deal for less than 14 bucks for the three extensions, a good brand name too.

 

With no battery cable I next headed to 2 auto parts stores, I was ignored at the first one and at the second one I realized they were in over their heads with lots of people carrying lots of broken parts. Granted, I checked their shelves and they didn't appear to have the cable either. I checked a hardware store - closed for business! Oh no! I'm gonna miss that store. Finally I resolved to fix the cable if possible. The next hardware store had the copper cable end for $1.10. Sold! (One of the auto parts store has a similar item, only more cheaply made in a distant land, for $4.99!) So I snagged the one for $1.10 (actually got 2 - never know when you might need another one and you never know when that hardware store might close for business).

 

Back to the storage unit I went, where I chopped the end off the battery cable and soon enough had the new end crimped on. Remind me to wrap some electrical tape on that next time I go, since I didn't have any tape with me today. I put the cable back on the relay, tightened everything down, got the torque wrench and torqued the nuts on the carburetor mount (17 lbs per the manual), put everything in order and got in to crank her. She cranked faster than she ever has - sounded like a real car turning over. Soon enough (and without any smoke rising from the battery cable) she fired and fell to an nice idle. I pulled the car out and turned it around in the unit, as I didn't expect to take it out. I just let her idle for a bit, then grabbed the throttle linkage and gunned her a couple of times. Man, she sounded strong!

 

I peered outside and noticed that the asphalt lot was nearly dry. Hmmmm, that means the roads are likely dry. Well, I was gonna find out! Out we went and hit the main road the runs north and south. Mainly a speedway like highway, people always charging along. I soon joined them charging up that speedway. The old girl ran better than ever! I guess she likes the sealed up carb and maybe the cleaner electrical connections. What a fun trip - running like a champ! I may have to change her name from Mightyfast to Sup-R-Fast!

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