Register now to get rid of these ads!

Let's play pretend- with a cooling system..

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Thunder Road, Aug 24, 2008.

  1. Thunder Road
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 125

    Thunder Road

    Let's pretend that you have a car, with a BIG motor and a radiator that seems to be too small, and no room to increase the size of the radiator.

    Would you:
    A) add another radiator somewhere else in the car, that has an electric fan

    B) Use a lot of water-wetter and keep your fingers crossed

    C) somehow add extra coolant capacity to your system

    If you pick C- please tell me how you'd DO that.

    D) what else am I missing?

    Yea, it's me and my '50 Ford Crestliner with the 402 big Block Chev motor.
    Even if I increase the rows of the radiator, it wouldn't add enough capacity to matter, would it? The current rad is a 2 row, but the tank would do for a 4, so i don't think another quart to fill up the two new rows would help much...

    Any thoughts would be appreciated...
  2. oilslinger53
    Joined: Apr 17, 2007
    Posts: 2,500

    from covina CA

    even though 2 extra rows woudlnt increase the coolant capacity, the cooling capacity will be increased quite a bit. should be ok with 4 rows/ if not, add some heater cores elsewhere on the car
  3. Leaky Pipes
    Joined: Jan 11, 2005
    Posts: 596

    Leaky Pipes

  4. Leaky Pipes
    Joined: Jan 11, 2005
    Posts: 596

    Leaky Pipes

    Oh yeah, forgot to mention its $30 a gallon but people says it the shit, nascar etc etc.

  5. I agree w/oilslinger. The increase in cooling fin area makes a big difference.
    Joined: Mar 23, 2006
    Posts: 440

    from Manor, TX

    too much timing?
  7. sdluck
    Joined: Sep 19, 2006
    Posts: 2,748


    My friend has a mercury with a 454 chevy,that runs hot,he has made 2 rad for it still runs hot,installed a eletric water pump no problems.
  8. retroridesbyrich
    Joined: Dec 2, 2004
    Posts: 1,872

    from Central NC

    I built rod that had a rather small raditiaor (form dictated function), I added a good quality Setrab engine oil cooler and it lowered the temp approximately 10-12 degrees.
  9. brandon
    Joined: Jul 19, 2002
    Posts: 6,334


    you could install some of those extruded finned tubes on the rails and plumb it in to the radiator, to gain some more capacity...a good shroud helps....check and see if your having any airflow issues in front of the radiator...(as in grille , fan , etc.)a air dam under the radiator...just a couple ideas...(most from previous heating/cooling issues...:rolleyes:) also check your thermostat.... brandon:D
  10. Saxon
    Joined: Aug 9, 2008
    Posts: 2,157

    from MN

    e) drive only 10 minutes in any direction, then wait....
  11. Geez, the stock Shoebox radiator cooled Rockets, Nailheads,
    Chevys and the like back in the day with no probs.

    Do you have a problem or do you think you may have a problem?
    Timing can be a big problem in keeping the engine cool and you definitely need vacuum advance.

    I'd stay away from the miracle liquid stuff, it's not done much for locals here in the Dez and I understand some of it can damage some cooling components.
    Snake oil imo.

    A lot of guys here are running a two row locally built aluminum radiator - with large tubes - and they're cooling well.
    I have one, but haven't tried it yet.

    Too many people are casting about for magic fixes and ignoring the basics....
  12. Your leaving a lotta stuff out,,,engine driven fan? if so, is a a cheap flex fan or a heavy duty non-flex type or do ypu have an electric fan?

    If electric,,,is it pushing or pulling the air through the radiator?

    Often overlooked is the pulleys,,,are the original to the engine or the aftermarket type,,,some of them are the same size ,,crank and water pump.

    A smaller waterpump pulley will circulate the water faster.

    are you using a thermostat?,,,what about a fan shroud?

    There are a lot of possible answers for your running hot besides the radiator,,,I have seen many T-buckets with blown big blocks,,and they very small radiators.

    And I will also agree,,timimg can create overheating issues.HRP
  13. 41fastback
    Joined: Sep 25, 2005
    Posts: 358


    You don't say if you're using an electric fan or what. If electric, should be a puller not pusher. The oil cooler is a good addition.
  14. brandon
    Joined: Jul 19, 2002
    Posts: 6,334


    another thing that concerns this...^^^^ if its a reversible fan ...are the blade on the right side...we had one , i bought for a customers car , that , you'd have to turn the fan blade assembly over for push or leave as assembled to pull ...(something like that if you can figure out what i just said...:rolleyes::D)
  15. GassersGarage
    Joined: Jul 1, 2007
    Posts: 4,728


    I have a '51 Ford with a 421 Pontiac. It ran hot but never puked. I wanted to keep the mechanical fan so I hid an electric pusher behind the grill in case I ran into stop and go traffic. The biggest change was when I added a thermostat. It slows the flow of coolant so it stays longer in the radiator. Now, instead of 215, it stays at 180 and I only use the electric fan in traffic.
  16. SimonSez
    Joined: Jul 1, 2001
    Posts: 1,632


    According to your other post, it is overheating on the highway rather than when it is stopped ? That is often a sign of a plugged radiator, or one that isn't big enough.

    If you have the room between the rad and the fan, put a thicker core with more rows in it. That is what the manufacturers used to do when they put bigger engines into the same engine bay.
  17. TagMan
    Joined: Dec 12, 2002
    Posts: 6,148


    Are you using a fan shroud ? Made a LOT of difference on mine.
  18. ??? What temp stat ??? 160 opens at 170 or so 190 opens at 200 or so

    buy a box of heater hose and leavethewhole amount coiled in the spare tire well plumb into thsystem adds gallons to your coolant amount

    use large diamiter pipe inside the frame rails and plumb in too

    with a electric water pump not driven offthe engine coolant circulates when ever you want to throw the switch

    Last edited: Aug 24, 2008
  19. Ole Pork
    Joined: Sep 4, 2006
    Posts: 581

    Ole Pork

    I don't think the radiator, if it is in good condition is your problem either. A lot of people think if you remove the thermostat, the engine w/run cooler. Wrong. IMHO, I think this is what you should do. First, flush Radiator and ENTIRE cooling system. Then install new thermostat. Wouldn't hurt to check out and/or replace water pump. And while we're at it, check out the pulleys and belts. Then re-time the ole girl. As the other guys mentioned, use a fan shroud.Good luck and let us know how it works out for you.......
  20. panic
    Joined: Jan 3, 2004
    Posts: 1,450


    "It slows the flow of coolant so it stays longer in the radiator."

    People still say this?
    It also slows the flow of coolant so it stays longer in the block.
  21. You may not need a shroud.

    Does the 50 still have the sheet metal/rubber piece that bolts to the apron flange in front of the radiator?
    It's designed to keep air from going up and over the radiator.
    If it's missing, air will take the easiest route and a lot of it will go over the radiator and not through it thereby cutting the cooling capacity down.

    Take note of the aftermarket that sells a similar device for the 39-48 Fords that block airflow from escaping over the top of the radiator.
    It's the fancy aluminum or stainless sheet metal piece that sits horizontal inside the nose area.
    Used because more than a few tossed the factory piece that goes there.

    Using a vacuum advance distributor?
    You should and the vacuum should be sourced to manifold vacuum.
    Timing makes a big difference in keeping the engine cool.
  22. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 49,254


    I would do what it takes to make room to increase the size of the radiator. I've put big cross flow radiators in a few big block powered really helps.
  23. fordf1trucknut
    Joined: Feb 13, 2007
    Posts: 1,118


    When I first put the 393 in my truck I had a stock copper/brass radiator that I had recored to have 4 rows. I had overheating issues at idle and at highway speed. (electric fan and all air deflectors in place.)

    I then upgraded to the biggest electric fan I could buy (18" fan) and that helped it a little.

    I bought some evans racing coolant and that helped a lot but on hot days it would still creep up in temperature.

    I finally bit the bullet and got an new aluminum radiator.. so with the aluminum radiator, the big electric fan and the evans racing cooland I have no more issues.

    The hottest it has gotten was up to 205 on a really hot day stuck in traffic due to construction for a long time but cooled back down to 180 as soon as I was rolling.


    I spent around $800 bucks for the cooling system but it is nice to not have to stare at my temp guage all the time hopeing it would cool down.
  24. pasadenahotrod
    Joined: Feb 13, 2007
    Posts: 11,776

    from Texas

    You should have no trouble with your engine in a 49-51 Ford car if:

    The radiator is adequate to the job. Is the core an original or a more efficient more fins per inch, more tubes, modern core? An original radiuator should eb adequate if it
    is in top notch, as new condition.

    To avoid puking coolant at stopping when not using an overflow tank, fill radiator only to it's "natural level" rather than to the top. On my Chevy powered 40 Ford that level was about 1-1 1/2" down from the top of the tank, any higher than that and it spit up every time the engine was shut off.

    Using a pressure cap and overflow tank? For best cooling you should.

    Mechanical fans should be with 1-1 1/2" off the core if mounted without a shroud.
    With a shroud the blades should be centered in the shroud opening.

    A radiator shroud would be a big plus too whether you use a mechanical fan or an electric one.

    Electric fans should be in puller mode and mounted to back side of core.

    Thermostat should be used for optimum temperature rating for engine performance, generally speaking engines run more efficiently at higher temperatures.

    All air should be directed through the core of the radiator. make sure all panels, top(to seal the hood), sides, and bottom are present and sealed from air leakage. The upper panel usually has a vertical rubber seal which touches the hood or hood reinforcement panel. It wouldn't hurt to use a modern style deflector panel under the back edge of the front crossmember to cause a low-pressure area which evacuates hot air from engine compartment.

    For a little extra cooling you might add a heater core with fan or forced air duct under your fenders. When overheat problems occur I've gotten home more than once by just having the stock heater in full heat with full blower on. Yes, it's damned uncomfortable with all that heat blasting inside the car but it might just get you home or to the nearest town where you can get help.

    A 50/50 mix of coolant/antifreeze and water is still, in most areas, the best mixture for best cooling.
  25. Marty McFly
    Joined: May 10, 2005
    Posts: 359

    Marty McFly

    It is not that the more rows actually add so much more fluid volume (helps but isn't the point) it is that you are exposing more radiator tubes with coolant to more air => more square inches of cooling surface. Even if the rows of tubes in the radiator are stacked one in front of the other they are still able to dissipate more heat than fewer rows.

    Marty McF.
  26. Kramer
    Joined: Mar 19, 2007
    Posts: 911


    This is not necessarily a good thing. If the water goes to fast thru the radiator it will not be able to dissipate the heat as well.
  27. Scotch
    Joined: May 4, 2001
    Posts: 1,489


    I say engineer each part of the system to be highly effective.

    For instance, I'd use thermal barrier coatings inside the engine (chamber, ports, valves, piston tops), I'd use graphite anti-friction coatings on the piston skirts and bearings, and I'd coat the oil pan with a heat-shedding coating, effectively making the whole oil pan into an oil cooler.

    I'd also add an oil cooler and remote filter setup to gain additional cooling and oil volume...almost using the engine oil as additional coolant.

    What little radiator you have should be aluminum, fully shrouded, and have a thermostatically-controlled high-efficiency electric fan. An effective pressurized overflow recovery system will allow for greater coolant quantity, too.

    The Evans coolant mentioned above is also good, but it's a dedicated system (you can't just top it off with water - it runs 100 percent Evans coolant and must be maintained that way). I've had good luck with both Red Line Water Wetter and Royal Purple's coolant additive.

    Additionally, if it's possible, I'd add louvers or some kind of vent setup to the engine hood or fenders to allow engine heat to escape.

    The thermostat stuff can be experimented with once everything else is done. 160-180 is normal, and it shouldn't be too tough to figure out what's best for your engine.

    If you do all the stuff I suggested, I promise you'll have a much greater chance of keeping it cool.

  28. Between pasadenahotrod and C9 they have solved your problem. There is some good info here, the only things I will add are,
    There should be a basic way to solve this without going to 'exotic' cooling fluids. A well sorted system should work without the need for it.
    The original core is a useless POS(Sorry Pasadena). If thats what you have get rid of it for a newer core go as wide as the tanks will let you (ie 4row). You can use the original tanks with a pressurised system, the fail point on the originals is the header plate that the tank solders to (well usually!).
    Remember that the motor you have is designed to run at a higher temp than the original one. It needs a pressurised cooling system and the original just wont cut it, the reason systems are presurised these days is because fluid boils at a higher temp under pressure, there fore you can run the motor at a suitable operating temp without boiling off all your coolant. This is one of the issues with the original radiator, unpressurised and running at a modern motor operating temp all it will do is puke coolant and way overheat.

    And again I see the thermostat issue pop up, I thought I had taken carte of this issue in another post?? Take the fucker out, throw it as far away as you can.
    Those two points are the only misinformation here, like I said the rest is good.

    One other issue, when you guys talk about anti freeze, do you actually mean coolant? They are two very different things, If you put anti freeze in it wont cool as well. A 50/50 water/COOLANT mix is better!
    So I'm confused is it just a misnomer or is there a product in the US that we don't get in Oz??
  29. FloridaJoe
    Joined: Aug 23, 2008
    Posts: 24


    Just to be on the same page: are you saying that it's not cooling enough because it is actually puking out anti-freeze?...or is it because the gauge is reading "high"?...or is it because you want the motor to run @ 160 degrees?
    I ask this because everybody has a different definition for what it means when a car is "running too hot". If it is puking, then it is a legit overheating prob. But if the gauge is reading high, then the gauge can be inaccurate(or just in a different location on the block then the next guy who's car is running cooler). If you want the engine to run at a temp. of say like 160 deg. (like a lot of people do), then maybe it's wise to ask why the engineers designed it to run much hotter.

    Either way, I know that this isn't the exact answer to your question, but maybe this would help clear up the way to view overheating issues. For instance, a bigger radiator does NOT mean better cooling. In fact, increasing the size of the opening in the grille doesn't increase airflow either (at least not much). There is more to both of the pictures.

    For example, many owners of SBC Vegas tried installing bigger radiators in their cars to prevent them from overheating...only to find out that it didn't work. On the otherhand, many other guys have SBC Vegas with smaller radiators that run cooler. This is due to the fact that they chose to increase the effecieny of flow through their radiator. One method to do this is by letting the air get out of the engine bay (usually done by installing fans & ducting, or just cutting holes at the back of the front fenders). For example, you can stuff as many "energy bars" as you can down your throat to try to become healthier....but you won't become healthier if you never take the time to sh** them out. Think of it as putting an 8-71 on a motor with cast-iron exhaust manifolds.

    Second, if you look closely at a mid-80's Monte Carlo SS's, would see that that the tiny grille was "sealed" all the way to the radiator. Even with this amazingly tiny grille opening, the Monte's didn't have cooling issues, yet these cars weighed a lot, had A/C, and came with slightly modified motors, and would sit in traffic all day long.

    ....but to tell you the truth, I really think it would be cool if you used the frame rails for increasing the capacity and put the radiator in back. I saw this on a tube frame car, and I think that it would really leave people scratching their heads....just my 2 cents.
  30. Slag Kustom
    Joined: May 10, 2004
    Posts: 4,312

    Slag Kustom

    what every one has missed is that the car is lowered with all the stock inner fenders there is no air flow out of the engine bay.

    i dont care how big of a rad or fan and shroud is on it. if the air has no where to go motor will get hot.

Share This Page

Register now to get rid of these ads!


Copyright © 1995-2021 The Jalopy Journal: Steal our stuff, we'll kick your teeth in. Terms of Service. Privacy Policy.

Atomic Industry
Forum software by XenForo™ ©2010-2014 XenForo Ltd.