Mark Huston

How to make up for lost time

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This past weekend I started my 1929 Studebaker President up and let it run until warmed up which right now is all I can do.    I had not done the winter oil change and wanted to get that taken care of.  I was stopped by my wife and adult daughter because I am suffering from a medical issue that I hope will be solved by an upcoming brain surgery procedure.  My daughter said to me “Let me change the oil, after all I need to learn how to do it if I am going to take care of the Studebaker.”   She crawled under the Studebaker while I sat nearby telling her what to do to complete the oil change.  This got me thinking about all of the things I know that I haven’t passed on to my daughter who will someday be the next caretaker of my Studebaker.  I am left wondering how to pass on everything I know about maintenance and driving of a car that I have taken 50 years to learn.  I guess I should not have waited so long to get started.   Now I wonder how do I make up for lost time?

 

Earlier this past April, before my medical issues got in the way, I started to teach her to drive the Studebaker.  The lesson was not real successful because she has never driven a manual transmission before.  However, she got the basics.  Here is a picture of her smiling behind the wheel after her first drive in the Studebaker.  

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Sorry to hear of your medical problems. I certainly hope it works out well.

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Young people absorb information like a sponge, teach her as much as you can, show her any manuals and special tools you have for it, and any internet sites that will be of help,

 

I hope your medical issues get resolved as quickly as possible.

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It is fantastic your daughter is interested in your great car. I have been thinking along the same lines but narrowed down to starting instructions. You have made me think expanding to a written record of starting, driving, storing, maintenance, thinks to watch for, history of the car , and why it is special might be a good start. Maybe a record of what I have done and where the spare parts are hiding would also be helpful.

 

I wish you the best.

 

Dave

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Beautiful Studebaker, take her on a weekend tour, would not have to be that far.  Just a nice ride and a great overnight destination.  The best way to learn is jump in with both feet, she will have you to help her learn.  I always forget all the details, having her do the driving she will have lots of question.

 

My daughter driving my 1933 Graham

 

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Mark just spend the time, she will pick up more than you can imagine.  Also best wishes for a speedy recovery, nice to see you back on here.

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Great she has the interest and wants to learn.  I taught my daughter to hand-crank the model T and we had a lot of fun with it.  Those are precious moments.  Hope all goes well with your medical issues - keep us informed.

Terry

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Prayers for a successful recovery.  As for passing along information for your daughter, can you start a notebook/collection of information, receipts list what you have done/replaced etc as much as you can remember.   Then start to list maintenance you do and how often.  Of course include oil weights, plug types etc.  A lot of this is probably in your head, and just needs to get onto paper.  Maybe she can even help you with this part.

 

Good luck, and beautiful car. I hope you will be able to enjoy it with her for years to come.

Eric

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Mark, the fact that your daughter wanted to help out  to me reads like she would have enjoyed the Dad/Daughter activity earlier. But that being said there is no time like the present ! , if she is eager then  let it flow. The more she does the more she will most likely want to do and learn. The fact she likes your Studebaker is a huge plus, she must remember the times riding in it with you most fondly and seeing how happy it made you.

When you are recovering go and sit in your car even if you can't drive it. The therapy that something like that can do for you since it is a thing in your life that you love besides your family will make a big difference. It did for me when I was recovering from heart surgery in 2018 and this year too - being in an old car of your choice is like having a birthday, Christmas , anniversary etc when ever you want. Makes you proud to be the caretaker of something made 90 + years ago that is still so beautiful. Keep well and know a lot of us will be thinking about you and hope you are back fit again asap.

Walt

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Take care of the medical needs first as it sounds like your daughter is already on her way to learning & caring about the car  Your both on the right track. Get well soon. 

Dave S 

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Teaching tip:   Do all the shifting and clutch lessons as well as brakes with the car stopped and not running in the yard.

Once the basics are learned, introduce the running engine and clutch and live brakes.  Easier for everyone an easier on the car too.

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Teaching tip:   Do all the shifting and clutch lessons as well as brakes with the car stopped and not running in the yard.

Once the basics are learned, introduce the running engine and clutch and live brakes.  Easier for everyone an easier on the car too.

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I'm sorry for your health problems.  Hope you get it behind you soon.  My take on this is that your daughter is ready to learn now.  In the past when there were no health issues you were going to last forever.   If you can video yourself do your daughter the favor of making her a video of your instructions.  She will forever cherish the video and can watch it when needed.  This is what I'm doing for my kids.

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My favorite picture is of my daughter under the dash changing out the speedometer in her 

1956 Studebaker Classic.

She drove that car and maintained it during her 4 years at Pitzer in Claremont CA.

That car is safely stored at my home in Joliet Illinois.

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John - great pictures, great car , thanks for sharing these.

WG

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Prayers for you and hope for a speedy recovery! Time is something none of us get back but we always have the chance to make the most of today. If you don't have a copy of the owners manual start there. Let her read that as though she's buying the car for the first time new. The old manuals have so much more in them rather than just feature use. You could add notes to the manual and make your own treasure of information for her. And of course, enjoy the time motoring!

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Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to comment.  I appreciate the kind thoughts and suggestions.  I will as time and opportunity permits put into practice the changing of the guard from me to my daughter the knowledge and skills to take over the care of the Studebaker.   I have been unfortunately so focused on in joying the moment I didn’t look forward to the future.  I guess we see more looking back through the rear view mirror than we do across the hood looking out the windshield.  

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just remember it is never to late to start, and you are never to old to learn to young for that matter.

 

i love to learn new things an d figure things out, probably because i was born with "The Knack" :) Dilbert fans will understand. 

 

when i get to old to learn something new, then it will be time to go

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Mark,

I to am experiencing the loss of the physical ability to do what I want to do.  Last Thursday I got my second new knee this year.  Unfortunately I'm not bouncing back as fast as I had hoped.  I guess 74 years of abusing my knees is taking it's revenge.   All of my collector cars run and drive, but it takes two good legs to do it.  This years Glidden Tour was accomplished with the aid of a cane and a very helpful wife only 5 months after the first knee.  I hoping to be touring again in 5 months, but serious car work is farther out.  Hang in there and keep adjusting your TO DO LIST.

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Hi Mark !

Terribly sorry to see what you are going through. 30+ years ago neurosurgery saved my life, and relieved me of unendurable, incessant pain which only drinking myself into a near comatose state could relieve to a small degree. Just prior to surgery I was nervous, of course, but there was absolutely no alternative. Modern surgery, to me, is the defining miracle of our times. You surely have the best doctors in the world at hand near where you live, and I am sure you have found the right one. If the doctors say you'll be OK, you will.

 

I don't know if your Stude' has synchromesh. I usually recommend anyone to learn double clutch technique on a synchromesh transmission. Watching and listening to a demonstration first. Next practicing the rhythm of all four appendages working with proper timing, and ultimately experiencing perfect shifts with no fear or apprehension. There are times which call for a snap fast 3 - 1 double clutched downshift, and they who hesitate find themselves in a potentially awkward situation. Off to the side of the road, pulling off the handbrake with the hand throttle set. This becomes a highly dubious procedure on a steep grade when the car has a multi plate clutch pak. You know I know all about that. Just have to shut it down and then start the car in 1st gear. Alright. I just admitted it. So yeah, a synchromesh trans is the proper classroom for "Double Clutching 101, 102, and 103".

 

Obviously the concept of making up for lost time carries an implication of a degree of regret. That analyst friend of mine, Dr. Diagnosis, just dropped by. So I will have to sign off for a visit with him.       Your cyber cruising sidekick,      -     Cadillac Carl 

 

P.S. Say Mark : "Doc" suggests no regrets at this stage of the game. He says you are doing the right thing, at the right time, in the right way, for the right reason. I say you can't beat that.      "Doc" always ends a professional session for me with one word : "COURAGE". 

 

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