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Hot Rods Chinese Radiators

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Marv64, Jun 9, 2014.

  1. Fan belt from China $5.45, same belt from Gates(U.S. made?) $20.00 Almost 4X as much last week! Just sayin. There's being cheap, then there's using common sense and spending 4X as much is why we have such a problem!
  2. denis4x4
    Joined: Apr 23, 2005
    Posts: 3,424

    from Colorado

    Food for thought: Every month SEMA News lists new SEMA members in the various membership categories. The July issue (with a great photo of Billy Gibbons' '34 coupe on the cover) has 87 new SEMA members in the Manufacturing categories with addresses in China, Taiwan, Korea, Malaysia and India. There also a couple of companies from Poland and Russia that joined. There is also a full page ad inviting SEMA members to participate in a business development tour in China.
  3. Gman0046
    Joined: Jul 24, 2005
    Posts: 5,976


    Don't be fooled into thinking AC Delco is USA made. Even their oil filters are now made in China.
  4. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,563

    from Oregon

    I hate to admit it, but I haven't looked for a tag stating where the last few radiators I bought were made. Have a new one sitting in the garage for a project now, so I guess I better go look!
    What I look for when making a purchase is the size, number of rows, single, double, or triple pass, welded not epoxy cores, and outlet locations. Beyond that I ignore the stupid HP ratings, as they're laughable. I've never seen one yet that would support the HP rating they claimed. Get as big a core as possible, with as wide a row(s) your car can handle. Then get the best fan and shroud your car will allow. I've found factory fans from the wrecking yard are a better option than anything after market, and cheaper too. Just got a late 90's T-Bird fan assembly from the wrecking yard yesterday for $35, and it will outflow anything made by the after market industry.
  5. fasttime
    Joined: May 20, 2014
    Posts: 56


    Put two Champion 3 row alumiun radiators in my OT Jeep, both leaked within 6 months. Sent one back for replacement, no problems. The other got some Alumseal, or whatever its called, I will see how it holds up.
  6. Ain't that the truth!
  7. williebill
    Joined: Mar 1, 2004
    Posts: 2,529


    For our traditional American iron, it's too bad we don't always have a made in USA choice for the parts we need. I sell and work with Asian made stuff all day at work, but decided years ago that I didn't want to use any of it on my cars. That's not always possible anymore, but I do look at where stuff is made, and will pay more for US if it's a decent product. But I also grab old nuts and bolts from 60s cars at Pullapart,too, instead of buying grade unknown from the usual sources. Just doesn't feel right to use Chinese parts on 40s and 50s American cars.
  8. clockwork31
    Joined: Sep 28, 2010
    Posts: 430


  9. Marv64
    Joined: Oct 17, 2011
    Posts: 37


    Thank You Hambers for your thoughts. The only companies that make a radiator for a 38 Ford deluxe or 39 std are the one China company , Walker and another high dollar company. I am going to check on getting mine repaired. I served in the military from 1966 to 1968 and worked in a union coal mine, so i am not fond of buying foreign products myself. If i was 30 years younger i would spend a day in a bar thinking this over. LOL can't take it anymore. Marv
  10. mustang6147
    Joined: Feb 26, 2010
    Posts: 1,847

    from Kent, Ohio

    I bought a Champion Radiator (Lake Elsinore C.A.). It is fully tig welded, and has a lifetime guarantee. I went through Big Dog performance (Sue W) She really went above and way beyond my expectations.... I woul buy another from her.... American made quality...
  11. 4woody
    Joined: Sep 4, 2002
    Posts: 2,092


    This place:
    has patterns for nearly any car. They work quickly, the price is shockingly reasonable, and they make them in Michigan, USA.
    He did one for my big block powered '38 Chrysler, and even had the pattern on hand for that.

    This is a referral from a happy customer:)
  12. Gman0046
    Joined: Jul 24, 2005
    Posts: 5,976


    I've heard a lot of good things about Superior Radiator.
  13. I'll have an original recored every time over a replacement if possible.
  14. Superior Radiator is a great company and will custom build a radiator - I had a replica radiator made for my English Turner sport car of which only 600 cars made, so you just can't buy one off the shelf. The rad fits perfectly and the sale went to a local company.

    My 41 hop up uses a Walker radiator and it is top notch - highly recommend either company

  15. hemi rodder
    Joined: Oct 10, 2011
    Posts: 510

    hemi rodder
    from NB Canada

    I just replaced a Griffin rad that nobody would repair, was leaking in the epoxy at bottom 800 dollar rad. got a rad advertised at 199, cost me 550 landed her in Canada. nice rad, welded all around and solid, can't say anything bad about it, I also hate to buy china, got it out of the states but was marked china on box, I could just imagine if I orederd the 800 dollar rad what it would have cost me landed home.
  16. From the Champion Radiator site:

    "While our radiators are manufactured in China, hence the low price point, they are designed in the U.S. If an American made radiator is preferred instead, please call us for availability. There will be a price difference to accommodate the American labor being put into it. A standard 2-row is $169.98, and an American made 2-row with 1" tubes is $279.98"
  17. cac646
    Joined: Feb 7, 2007
    Posts: 176


    I had a cheap ebay rad in my '60. It was cheap and made well but I agree the HP remarks aren't appropriate. It can't cool my 409 with A/C going up hill in the hot desert heat. I've just upgraded to a Griffin rad. 2 5/8" cores vs 2 1-1/4" cores makes a lot of difference. The cores come with a big price tag though.
  18. Gman0046
    Joined: Jul 24, 2005
    Posts: 5,976


    The truest old saying is "You Get What You Pay For". How does anyone know Chinese radiators are designed in the US??
  19. Truckedup
    Joined: Jul 25, 2006
    Posts: 3,863


    I have recores done at a local radiator shop for reasonable money. But sometimes you don't have a core or have little money...I have bought two Chinese radiators and had no problems.
    And when you have a recore done, do you know for sure where the core was made?
  20. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,796


    Two words: Superior Radiator. They sell on Ebay.
  21. My cores are made here in Washington specifically for each radiator. So yes, I do.

    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
  22. I had a really old 50's radiator that I thought was a shot bunny, so I bought a radiator off ebay. Guy at the radiator shop just shook his head when I asked could he move the filler neck off the new one to match the old one I showed him. He said I should have just recoed the old one as the materials used in it were far better for soldering than the new stuff which just did not like being soldered at all.
  23. fms427
    Joined: Nov 17, 2006
    Posts: 864


    I used a Mustang radiator in a Crosley gasser I built -bought on Ebay, and labeled as Made in China. Never had any issues with it.

    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
  24. tailpipe47
    Joined: Mar 21, 2009
    Posts: 42


    Buy American or start learning Chinese!!!!
  25. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 16,921


    Mandarin, or Cantonese?

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