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Ramblin' Man: 1918

Ramblin' Man: 1918

San Francisco circa 1918. "Studebaker." Well-used, with traveling cases marked "R.J.W." and "L.A." 5x7 glass negative by Christopher Helin. View full size.


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Early Cal Custom?

Apparently a model SD; the body could be as early as 1914, but the last year I can find for carbide headlamps is 1912, and the side panel on the hood is apparently not original, not being louvred.

The Car

I own a 1913 Studebaker, and that does not look like a Studebaker to me. 1913 was the last year of right hand drive, at least in the USA, and only the smallest one of that year (Model 25) had Prestolite lighting system.

This car has left hand drive, Prestolite system and the cowl and radiator shell look unlike any year of Studebaker of that era.

Even if it does have hubcaps that say Studebaker, they may have been swapped out.

[The hubcaps are blank. The pointed door molding would seem to be something that Studebakers of the era have in common with this car. - Dave]

OK - The body is a 1914 Model SC, but it has been retrofitted with Prestolite Gas lights and has had the hood and radiator shell replaced by something else. Probably a real mess.

Also, Prestolite was not a carbide and water system, but an actual tank of acetylene gas. Carbide generators were messy and time consuming to keep up. The pressurized tank was easy by comparison, hence "Presto".

What's that tank?

What is that tank on the running board?

[A Prestolite acetylene gas tank for the headlights. - Dave]

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