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A question about a radiator modification

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by yellow_cad, May 5, 2010.

  1. yellow_cad
    Joined: Apr 26, 2010
    Posts: 19

    yellow_cad
    Member

    I have a 1954 Cadillac with an older rebuild on the engine and the stock radiator rotted a few years ago and run a 7 lb. radiator cap. Also have the stock pulley driven fan and an additional pusher fan on the front of the radiator. The car temperature is OK in most situations but when I need to do extended climbing as I do in the California Sierra foothills to get to some shows and fun spots, it is likely to overheat. Usually a few stops to hose down the raditor suffice to get me where I am going but I would like to avoid this.
    At this point, I am comtemplating a modified radiator. My stock radiator is a 3 row. As I see it, my options are a new high efficiency 3 row core or a new high efficiency 4 row. The 4 row would take enough modification to the radiator area that I would prefer to go with the 3 row. I am trying to determine if the high efficiency 3 row with a 10 lb. cap will solve my problem or if I should go with the 4 row and/or other possible modifications to be sure that I get the desired effect (no over heating). Thanks for any thoughts.
     
  2. wheelbilly
    Joined: Jan 24, 2009
    Posts: 163

    wheelbilly
    Member

    No help to offer other then a suggestion to look at the surface area of the 3 row vs the 4 row. That's what got me to stick with a quality 2 row for my flathead.
     
  3. yellow_cad
    Joined: Apr 26, 2010
    Posts: 19

    yellow_cad
    Member

    Are you saying that different brands of the same configuration have different amounts of surface area? If so, could you recommmend the best brand for the best cooling?
     
  4. A good rule of thumb on radiator sizing is that you want 20% more radiator area in square inches then the engine has in cubic inches. I.E. : 350 cubic inch motor needs 420 square inches of radiator.

    It can be hard to fit in some older vehicles but it is worth the trouble and the closer you can get to that 20% larger the better. Since I started following this rule of thumb I haven't had overheating problems on any of the cars that I have built. My hot rod 327 in my 37 Chevy pickup runs a single 1" row aluminum radiator with a 20% larger rad and it runs on the thermostat at 185*, climbing any hill or sitting in traffic, even in 105* weather. I might over heat but it wont.

    Jaysin
     

  5. yellow_cad
    Joined: Apr 26, 2010
    Posts: 19

    yellow_cad
    Member

    So when you say "420 square inches of radiator," do you mean frontal area of the radiator?
     
  6. yellow_cad
    Joined: Apr 26, 2010
    Posts: 19

    yellow_cad
    Member

  7. BadgeZ28
    Joined: Oct 28, 2009
    Posts: 1,097

    BadgeZ28
    Member
    from Oregon

    There are a variety of new fans that more lots of air. I am referring to the crank driven fan. They vary in size and blade pitch. I had one on an old Chevy and it moved a ton of air. Make sure the electric is pushing air and not pulling it if mounted to the grill side. A fan shroud on the motor side can also help with cooling.
     
  8. wheelbilly
    Joined: Jan 24, 2009
    Posts: 163

    wheelbilly
    Member

    All I can refer to is the ebay auction where I found the supplier. http://entropyrad.com/ He had a whole thing on the listings that detailed his radiators and size of the core and AT coolers and cutaways and I actually learned something from it, so I sent him my mods to the mustang radiator and got it. Now I have to cut it up and make it shorter :D
     
  9. The frontal area of the core (finned part) not including the tanks.

    Jaysin
     
  10. pasadenahotrod
    Joined: Feb 13, 2007
    Posts: 11,776

    pasadenahotrod
    Member
    from Texas

    Often a 3 or 4 radiator will not be a true one, but rather less tubes in rows staggered from each other, the below does not translate in this but picture the dots row to row staggered between each other so a 3 or 4 row might actually have less tubes than a 2 row!
    . . . .
    . . . .
    . . . .
    . . . .

    rather than
    ........
    ........
    ........
    ........

    The number of fins per inch is another gauge of radiator efficiency.
     

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