Bob's Studebaker Resource Website

Studebaker Detroit Gear Transmission Maintenance
By Eric West (55studeman) SDC FOrum

Instructions on changing the oil:
1) Warm up the tranny by driving a few miles if possible.
2) Drain the pan by one of two methods:
    A)by removing the oil pan drain plug
    B) For more thorough draining remove the drain pan and clean out
    heavy sediment that collects and clean the wire mesh filter at
    the same time.

*Next up is to Drain the Torque converter
3)Remove the cover plate on the bottom of the T/C housing.
4)Put tranny in Neutral.
5)Rotate T/C until you see the drain plug.
    *I like to rotate the T/C with a big screw driver wedged between the
    T/C to flex plate bolts

6)Remove T/C drain plug and let fluid empty.
7)Replace the T/C drain plug, firm tightness.
8)Replace the T/C cover plate.
9)Replace the oil pan drain plug.
10)Now read and follow the instructions below, copied from another post I did.

Use DexIII -merc or better, as the new technology ATF's are very good
and there's no bad issues with using this new stuff with old auto-trannys
(because modern trannys are increadibly similar on the insides to our old 50's
trannys, when you look at the basics of clutch packs, bushings, the stuff that
matters when it comes to oil.)

9 liters is the max (+/- a little)-this ONLY applies if tranny AND torque
converter totally empty. If during a rebuild, your TC is prefilled with a quart or
two when you re-install the tranny (highly recommended), then how much you will need to
add will be lower -please be aware of that. If you end up putting in 10, I'd be worried
as that is definitely above what the shop manual specifies and it's above the amounts that
I have ever seen put in.

With completely empty tranny and T/C, here's fill up procedures:
2. Add 6-7 liters prior to startup.
3. Start engine, immediately put tranny into Drive or Low (either works perfect,
idea here is to 1) fill brake band actuators, 2) apply low gear brake band to
decrease splatter that gets on dipstick making it hard to impossible to read it)
4. Add an additional quart within first 30 seconds with car running.
5. Check dipstick for level (engine still running)
6. Add additional oil as needed (engine still running)
7. Repeat steps 4-5 until level is just below full.
8. Move gear selector through positions.
9. Now Drive car around block -double check to see if level has changed.
10. Continue driving 10-20 minutes) until engine/tranny at HOT operating temp,
then make final oil level check. If overfilled, suck some out, if under-filled
top it off.

-follow procedure below (copied from another post I did -easier that way)
Modern cars do this automatically, our 50's cars don't. If you do lots of
stop and go driving, where more shifts occur, expect to do this more often, for
most it's probably a once every 15,000 -30,000 check.

This is all covered in the shop manual, I'd highly recommend anyone working
on the DG to get one, if you don't have it already:

))There are three bands, the most forward band is the reverse,
))the middle is low and the rear is the forward band.
))All of them are adjusted the same, with a lock nut and an adjustment screw.
)) The low and forward bands are reached via the driver side and
)) the reverse is reached from the passenger side.

    The idea is to loosen the lock nut and then adjust the band until it is close
    but not binding on the planetary gear drum. Studebaker specifies a special
    "band adjustment tool" which is a rare, very rare, item. I have one that I got
    off ebay, so I made up some instruction to do it without it based on counting
    the turns of the screw. So far those who have done it, say it works very well -
    I also did this method for a number of years prior to getting the tool.

    So here it is, the shade tree way of doing it,
    Stude DG series (150, 200, or 250) brake band adjustment:
    Loosen the lock nut (3/4 socket) and tighten the adjusting bolt (5/16 open end socket)
    until it bottoms out tight against the drum.

    Next mark the square adjusting bolt so that you can count turns, I did it with "white out" on one edge.

    Then you want to back off the bolt a certain amount of turns.
    The exact amount according to the special adjusting tool came out to be 2.5 turns
    (this would be the minimum).
    Prior to getting the tool I did it manually like this and I now remember that I did 3 full turns,
    which meant it was a little loose but it still worked
    only problem with too loose is it will need adjustment more often.

    There you have it 2.5 to 3 turns. This adjustment is the same for each band, Low, Forward, and Reverse.
    With it at the correct adjustment, hold the screw with one hand while you tighten the lock nut to roughly 28 ft-lbs -or simply snugged tight.

    Eric West
    "The Speedster Kid"
    Sunny Northern California

    See full thread here