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1953 Studebaker.....

The Stude is a San Antonio, Texas car, so it had no rust! An old racing buddy delivered it to me up here, and Todd Redenshek and I spent 5 years turning it into what it is today.

The engine is a tall deck 427 truck block bored and stroked to 491 CID. It has a Comp Cam big roller cam and springs, Dart heads Brodix intake, Manley rods, Callies crank, Manley Severe Duty stainless valves, stud girdle Barry Grant 1000 CFM carb. I built the engine since I used to build funny car engines back in the 60’s. Joe Sockloskie did all the machine work.

The trans is a manual valve body 4L80E built by Lucky Bodenbach out of St. Louis. The 4000 RPM lock-up converter was built by Terry Hedrick of Seaton’s Shaker fame.

Special Thanks to Jim Spotton, he wired the Stude

The 2.125” headers were built by Rocky Bellino and modified by Roy Mohr. They use 3.5” merge collectors going into a 3.5” exhaust system using Flowmaster 3 chamber mufflers.

Church Fabrication welded up a 2” by 4” tubular frame I had designed. We use a back-braced 9” Ford with Richmond gears on air bags in the back and a Mustang II front suspension on air bags up front.

The body is extensively modified. The top is chopped 3” in front and 2.5” in the rear. The cowl has been dropped 1”, the rear window has been leaned forward, the hood has been sloped back and a cowl-induction Chevy scoop has been added. The grille openings were hand fabricated out of sheet metal. The rear fins are ’57 Chrysler, and the tail lights are Lee custom lenses for a ’56 Chevy that I found at a swap meet. There are only 4 pieces on the car that haven’t been modified – The windshield, the back glass, and the 2 grille bars.

Jimmy at Future Tech did the roll cage. Jim Spotton did the wiring. Dave Shank did the upholstery. Todd Redenshek and I drew up the dash and then made it out of brake line tubing and sheet metal. Al Nosse made the hub caps and the horn button. Barb and Dick Advey helped with the brake lines. Brian Morris (Custom Auto) did the sound system.
The car is called “Gold Dust” for 2 reasons:

1. I used to use powdered resin (Gold Dust) to get better traction with the funny car in the 60’s.

2. I have a fortune tied up in this car!

Originally I planned to paint the car silver, but Todd and my wife Jeanie saw this Lexus SC430 up at Classic painted Eygyptian Sand Pearl, and they overruled me. I’m glad they did! We hear more comments about the color than anything else.

The Stude is currently featured on page 52 of Custom Rodder magazine, and ti is scheduled to be on “My Classic Car” on Thursday, February 19.

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