Firing her up for the first time

The new battery I bought is a maintenance free NAPA unit – you can make out the eye just to the left of the positive terminal. I picked up some false battery caps from EBAY for Chrysler batteries. Thought it would be a nice ‘original’ look. I will include a Studebaker Battery decals in my next order to Studebaker Intl for the battery top and the warning label for the apron.

The electric fuel pump is about 4″ from the muffler and exhaust pipe so I decided to add some protection. This is header fiberglass insulation wrap. I covered the back end of the muffler and then on to the the tail pipe. I used stainless gear clamps to keep it all in place. This should stop any radiant heat getting to the pump and lines.

Engine ready for start up. I’m filling the trans at the same time. I’ve already put three quarts of oil in the trans. I’ve attached a filler funnel so I can quickly add oil after startup. I will add the oil at 1500 rpm and then raise the idle to 2000 rpm for the 20 minute break in.

Break in underway. Hard to see but the garage if full of smoke and fumes from the paint on the exhaust and engine. I have two garage style hoses leading the exhaust out of the garage but it is still enough to set off the fire alarms. Oil pressure remained at about 70 lbs. I thought it would drop, but I guess it didn’t get a chance to heat up the oil enough in the 20 minutes of so at 2000 rpm. It dropped to around 40 at idle. I’m using 10W40 oil and GM’s EOS. Water temp was on the high side as well. Difficult to get enough air through the 3 core rad at a standstill.

Three problems appeared from the break in. All easily fixable. I had to turn the distributor a little too far to the right and there is a danger of kinking the vacuum advance hose. I’ll rotate the wires to the right and move the distributor to the left. Second, I thought I had a good HD water pump, but it is rumbling so it will be replaced by a new unit. Thirdly, the starter bendix doesn’t want to return immediately. It spins on the ring gear a bit before retracting. I have a backup starter to install. Then I’ll check the bad unit to see what the problem is.

Next I’ll be changing the oil and hooking up the PS. Once that is OK I’ll go on to the AC and get everything in place for a charge of 134A.

Blog updates will be a little slower from now on, but I will post as I get stuff done over the winter to get on the road in the spring. It’s been off the road now for 2 years. Keen to get it on the road again – it is such a nice car to drive!

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