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Hot Rods Flathead water pump and oil questions

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by hombres ruin, Jul 2, 2018.

  1. hombres ruin
    Joined: Nov 21, 2006
    Posts: 3,301

    hombres ruin
    Member

    hi guys I have a stock 41 ford coupe with 20,000 miles on the Flathead stock water pumps which I don’t know how long they have been there. Recently found some oil under the radiator cap about the size of a quarter after I drive it. I have a new rad about 2 years old . I drained the rad and found no oil in the water. I also have some play in the pump head where the belt goes, also oil accumulation on the motor mounts and arm on the mount. All on the drives side. Nothing on the passenger side. No loss of water from rad, no water in the oil , no combustion gases in rad per test. No overheating at all, no smoke or water out the back.Now I was told that the seals on these pumps wear out and the lubrication of these bushings is from the engine oil. This wear could put oil in the rad. I want to get them rebuilt by skip haney. Had this happened to anyone else. ?
     
  2. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 15,495

    alchemy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I rebuilt my stock pumps over a decade ago. I used the stock-style pre-48 rebuild kits available from the parts houses and did it myself with a big vice and some sockets to press the parts on and off. When I leave the hood sides off I can see a slight sprinkle of some anti freeze on the fenders after a hard run. Nothing that really worries me though.

    I think if your pump is really worn, like you say it is letting oil run down the front of the pump, you probably need to rebuild it. If you are having overheating problems then maybe Skip's super rebuilds are the way to go. If they currently work well to keep you cool, maybe try it yourself.
     
  3. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    Stock lubrication through 1948 is by 2 secret passages from front of valley down into pumps!
    I think new repros use sealed pump bearings, as do Skip's...don't worry til things get messy, then either a stock rebuild or a modern cure with digital bearings or whatever is easy.
     
  4. hombres ruin
    Joined: Nov 21, 2006
    Posts: 3,301

    hombres ruin
    Member

    Thanks Bruce.. in your experience does this happen often? I panicked and thought the worse when I saw the oil and thought what the hell is going on. I spoke to skip he said he uses bushings for his rebuild . Is it hard to get oil in the rad on a flathead if your water pumps are good?
     
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  5. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    All manner of little leaks were common from both routine wear and disastrous engine failure! From what you reported yours sounds like minor wear.
    Ford Parts book drawing provided by Dr. Van Pelt
    [​IMG]
    Note the highly sophisticated devices (in engineering terms, "washers") used to keep water and oil apart.
    Also note that the heavy truck pump is a somewhat different beast.

    drawing here:http://www.vanpeltsales.com/FH_web/flathead_drawings_engines.htm
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2018
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  6. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    As with most fluids in early Fords, this stuff was expected by Henry to operate on the honor system. Fluids were told where they were to work, and the boss damn well expected them to do their jobs properly.
     
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  7. Mac VP
    Joined: May 13, 2014
    Posts: 309

    Mac VP
    Member

    The new pumps have three nice features:
    1) sealed ball bearings instead of bushings
    2) modern carbon-ceramic seals rather than fiber washers
    3) improved impeller design with curved vanes
    The curved vanes reduce cavitation of the coolant.....this is a churning action that tends to produce bubbles in the coolant at the impeller. Bubbles don’t pump as well as fluid so the curved vanes are a nice improvement. Last but not least.....the pumps are all new.....no old castings etc, and are ready to bolt on. They just plain work!

    If you’re doing a restoration, getting Skip to rebuild the original factory pumps would be the way to go, and he does nice work. If the new pumps will work for you, we sell them.
     
  8. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    And do note that Mac VP is one of the few early Ford dealers who actually knows his early Fords!
     
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  9. hombres ruin
    Joined: Nov 21, 2006
    Posts: 3,301

    hombres ruin
    Member

    Thank you Bruce for your advice, much appreciated. I will get some new pumps and see what happens. Hope this fixes the oil in the rad situation.
     

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