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"64 Galaxie 500 running hot

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 427c.i., May 25, 2012.

  1. 427c.i.
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 51

    427c.i.
    Member

    Hoping for a little insight on a problem with my fathers 1964 Galaxie 500.

    The motor (390) was rebuilt several years ago and sat while he restored the car. We finally got it back on the road last year and while driving around town it gets pretty warm. (car is all original so it doesn't have an actual #'s temp guage, so I don't know actually HOW hot, he says upper end of normal on the factory guage) If he gets it on the open road it cools down, but the minute he gets to the next town it creeps back up.
    I figured the radiator was the problem but he just got the call from the repair shop that the radiator looks brand new iside and flows better than factory specs. (shop is run by an old timer that knows his stuff)
    Everything on the motor is new (guage sending unit, thermostat, cap, hoses etc.)

    I told him to take the thermostat out and see what happens as I have gotten bad ones before, but I was really hoping the radiator shop was going to tell him it was corroded/plugged...now we have to look for the "not so obvious."

    Any insight or ideas would be greatly appreciated!
     
  2. Judd
    Joined: Feb 26, 2003
    Posts: 1,894

    Judd
    Member

    does he have the rubber seal between the core suport and hood that keeps hot air from resurculating over the radiator?
     
  3. I was having the same problem with my 64 convertible. Same engine too. Like Judd says, be sure the rubber seal is sealing off the radiator so air doesnt go around it. I replaced mine and it cured the problem. My gauge stayed at about 170-80 after that. You can get new ones at DennisCarpenter.com
     
  4. 427c.i.
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 51

    427c.i.
    Member

    Yes, we put new seals around the radiator during the restoration...
     

  5. stuckonda101
    Joined: Dec 28, 2011
    Posts: 88

    stuckonda101
    Member
    from SFV, CA

    Running lean can cause it to run hot, also try running a temp gauge even if temporary... It can read hot but not actually be running hot. You know
     
  6. brad chevy
    Joined: Nov 22, 2009
    Posts: 2,627

    brad chevy
    Member

    If its doing it just in town and stop and go,not out on open road it sounds like you"re not getting enough air flow across radiator. Check the fan and the belts to,does it have a shroud or not?
     
  7. 427c.i.
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 51

    427c.i.
    Member

    No shroud but has all the parts/setup from when the car was new (my Dad is the original owner and it only has 43,000 miles)and it never ran hot before the rebuild. The radiator guy told him "if it ran fine before, it should run fine now...so something is not right." The rebuild was back to stock so there are no changes to speak of.
    Not against putting a shroud on however, if there is a problem, would like to fix it before hand.
    As far as running lean, I cleaned the fuel lines and the carb was rebuilt. will check the flow though and maybe try fattening it up.

    Thanks for the help guys!!
     
  8. 54Mercruiser
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 92

    54Mercruiser
    Member

    Check that radiator cap, been down that road and replaced a water pump, hoses, thermostat, housing, power-flushed then put the radiator in the shop. All that to find out it was the cap the whole time.

    Also, could be a bad sending unit for the gauge itself.
     
  9. 61 chevy
    Joined: Apr 11, 2007
    Posts: 891

    61 chevy
    Member

    no shroud is the problem, the fan is not pulling air
     
  10. SCRIBE35
    Joined: Apr 27, 2011
    Posts: 75

    SCRIBE35
    Member
    from California

    Check the vaccum advance on your distributor.
     
  11. Rattle Trap
    Joined: May 11, 2012
    Posts: 358

    Rattle Trap
    Member

    Fan shroud would be the first thing I would try.
     
  12. RagtopBuick66
    Joined: Dec 12, 2011
    Posts: 1,182

    RagtopBuick66
    Member

    Has he got a coolant overflow tank coming from the intake? Rectangular black thing with a second radiator cap? Remove it and back-flush it. There are baffles inside which are wonderful for catching junk and scale (like the junk and scale that SHOULD be in a 48 year old radiator but isn't) and can restrict flow..
     
  13. 427c.i.
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 51

    427c.i.
    Member

    Ragtop, no overflow tank on this one. A fan shroud is in the works as it's going to do nothing but help, however, it has never had one before and cooled fine. Since there was never a problem before, we just don't want to overlook something that could do serious damage. Will try the radiator cap, another new guage sending unit and check the advance as well.

    THANKS FOR ALL THE REPLIES!!
     
  14. tommy
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 14,758

    tommy
    Member Emeritus

    I'd put in a temporary mechanical gauge to find out exactly what the upper range of normal is in reality. If it's not boiling over, you might not have a problem. With it running normal temps on the road but running hotter in traffic, I'd suspect an air flow problem. How close to face of the radiator is the fan? It should not be more than 3/4". As you say you really don't know that it is running hot only that the gauge is now reading high normal.
     
  15. 427c.i.
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 51

    427c.i.
    Member

    Just spoke with Dad about either checking the guage or installing a couple of period correct guages in the car(Water temp/oil psi). Since we replaced the sending unit, the new one may read different as well. The fan is within 3/4 of an inch to the radiator and all the seals are in place.
     
  16. MeanGene427
    Joined: Dec 15, 2010
    Posts: 1,535

    MeanGene427
    Member
    from Napa

    The stock setup should work fine without a shroud, I've run a good 14:1 427 in my 406 car with no shroud and never got hot, with just a 4-blade solid fan. He doesn't perhaps have a flex-fan on there? How is it plumbed without the expansion tank? The stock radiator doesn't have a filler neck, and the room for expansion is in the tank. There are fillers that can be added to the upper hose, have one from a Mustang II that I have used with a Gal radiator in a '69 Mach1. I'd also check that the correct length spacer got put back behind that fan, so the fan is close enough to pull air
     
  17. 427c.i.
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 51

    427c.i.
    Member

    It doesn't have an "overflow" tank but it does have the expension/filler tank above the radiator, nothing has been changed, all parts are original and the way they came from the factory. I blew out the above mentioned tank before reassembly but maybe it needs a more thorough cleaning?

    He did try a 5 and a 6 blade factory Ford fan, but they made no noticable difference.
     
  18. Muttley
    Joined: Nov 30, 2003
    Posts: 18,432

    Muttley
    Member

    Have you checked to make sure the bottom hose isnt collapsing?
     
  19. mtkawboy
    Joined: Feb 12, 2007
    Posts: 1,213

    mtkawboy
    Member

    The head gaskets say "front" on them and a lot of new or non FE builders dont understand that on one side the "front" has to be face down and they put it on wrong which will cause problems
     
  20. RagtopBuick66
    Joined: Dec 12, 2011
    Posts: 1,182

    RagtopBuick66
    Member

    That would be the tank I was referring to. Make sure it doesn't have any junk settled in it.
     

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  21. RagtopBuick66
    Joined: Dec 12, 2011
    Posts: 1,182

    RagtopBuick66
    Member

    Been there, done that. There is a coolant port at the rear of the cylinder head (if I recall correctly). Putting the head gasket on upside down or backwards will block off that port. I remember about 6 months ago having to UNDO both heads just to verify that I had put the head gaskets on correctly, since I hadn't checked that earlier when I did it. Had a lot going on, and it seems like child's play, but it is very important. Good thing I realized I hadn't checked that and took the time to undo/retorque everything because I did in fact have the port blocked off on one side.
     
  22. HRSPWR
    Joined: Mar 28, 2012
    Posts: 12

    HRSPWR
    Member
    from Olympia WA

    My experience is that the replacement temp sending units are not calibrated correctly. I had the same problem, factory guage reads hot, but the actual water temperature is really only 180.
     
  23. carcrazyjohn
    Joined: Apr 16, 2008
    Posts: 4,844

    carcrazyjohn
    Member
    from trevose pa

    Definately the lack of shroud
     
  24. HaydoRacin
    Joined: Feb 26, 2009
    Posts: 3

    HaydoRacin
    Member
    from Illinois

    Hey Guys, Dad here, thanks for all the reponses. Lots of things to look at. If a shroud is installed should the fans spacer then be changed to make sure the fan is a lttle outside the shroud? The reason I am asking is that a friend has a '63 Impala with a similar problem and he does have a shroud. Comparing his fan to a late model Chevy pickup the factory pickup fan is further back (about half way outside the shroud) than the '63 so he thinks the '63 is not pulling the air as efficiently. Did the towel test on both and the Chevy pickup pulls the towel much tighter than the '63.
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2012
  25. brad chevy
    Joined: Nov 22, 2009
    Posts: 2,627

    brad chevy
    Member

    If the head gaskets were installed wrong wouldn't the thing run hot all the time,not just at slow speeds ? The reason lack of air flow was suggested is open road driving you get more air and in traffic you rely on the fan to cool the radiator.
     
  26. MeanGene427
    Joined: Dec 15, 2010
    Posts: 1,535

    MeanGene427
    Member
    from Napa

    I almost hate to tell you at this point, but it might save someone else some work- FE head gaskets have a visible tab that sticks out past the head in the front if the gaskets are on right- if you can't see gasket sticking out at the lower front corners, the gaskets are bassackwards. Take a look at an FE gasket and you'll see it- the lower "rear" corner below where the water passage is follows the outline of the head and is covered by the head, while the front edge is squared off and sticks out

    To the OP- have you guys just tried putting the original sender back in? I'm thinking the sender isn't matching or correct for the guage. Does it actually overheat, spill water etc., or is the gauge just coming up? Most of those early Gals never had or needed a shroud- my 406 car never had one, and has had several different 427's in there and has never gotten hot- and my ragtop w/390-4V and auto trans plumbed into the radiator will idle in traffic without heating up no problem. Also had a '63 w the 390-4V and no shroud, and not fussy about temp at all, even in stop 'n go July crusin' traffic with a half-dozen Daisy-Duker's loaded up (those were the days :eek:). Unless something else has been changed, I'd sure try a stock early sensor in there again- it shouldn't be overheating if the stock system is in place and working right
     
  27. 427c.i.
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 51

    427c.i.
    Member

    The original sending unit was broken during the time the motor was apart so "comparing" the two is not an option. The replacement is a stock unit from Dearborn. I do think the first thing to do is put an actual guage on the car to see where the temp is. I agree with you Gene...if it cooled fine from the factory, with no modifications, it should cool fine now.
    I am curious about the head gaskets being installed wrong...one would think if a water port was blocked it would heat up fast and stay hot...
     
  28. A bit late to the party, but have a look at the bypass hose between the front of the intake and water pump. Make sure it's not soft or possibly collapsed.

    Bob
     
  29. hvywrench
    Joined: Sep 29, 2011
    Posts: 158

    hvywrench
    Member
    from N.W. Conn.

    Since I had a problem similar to your's: Check the anti-freeze concentration. I had mine over-concentrated and it won't transfer heat properly, or as well.
    I lowered the antifreeze ratio and it made a very noticeable difference in the coolant temps. I no longer keep it 50/50, but a bit less A/F since it gets stored inside during the winter. If freezing isn't a concern, run just enough A/F and water pump lube to keep the internals happy and it will shed heat better.
    Just my experience with my 427, no shroud, stock 390 radiator.
    Bill
     
  30. SOHC427
    Joined: Apr 5, 2009
    Posts: 957

    SOHC427
    Member

    Good idea to put a mechanical gauge on there, to get a true number, too.
     

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