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Louvers--pros and cons?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Leadsled51, Sep 19, 2006.

  1. Leadsled51
    Joined: Dec 21, 2001
    Posts: 333

    Leadsled51
    Member

    Ok, I was thinking of having my hood punched with some louveres, but wanted some opinions of some of you who have your hoods punched. Would you do it again? Do you regret it? I know they look cool as hell, but after having them done, will I wish I hadn't? I know a guy who had them on a 55 Chev, and had the inside blocked off with a piece of stainless steel. The reason? It ran HOTTER with the louveres open than with the steel blocking them off. Help me decide before I get them done. Not that it matters, but this is on a 50 Chev. If you have pics, show them, so I can get an idea how I might punch them. Thanks!
     
  2. Sawracer
    Joined: Jul 6, 2006
    Posts: 1,314

    Sawracer
    Member
    from socal

    Louvers are kinda like tattoos eh? Your engine is water cooled right? I would consider air flow on say a VW engine , but wouldn't sweat it on the joe average american automobile. I personally think my decklid on my coupe is too cherry to louver. I'll buy a decklid skin and louver that if I feel the urge. Don't bother considering attempting to do it yourself, ask here for someone to do it for you. Even if you had the machinery/tools necessary in your garage right now without experience you'll thrash your hood. My two cents.
     
  3. Bugman
    Joined: Nov 17, 2001
    Posts: 3,483

    Bugman
    Member

    Theyvent heat from your engine compartment thus defrosting just the lower half of teh windshield when driving in the snow. Watch out for bumps, it'll make the undefrosted top half slide down and block your vision. Ask Tuck for further details :D
     
  4. 40Standard
    Joined: Jul 30, 2005
    Posts: 5,810

    40Standard
    Member
    from Indy

    louvers look cool on a hood but if it rains, water is going on your engine
     

  5. Nightshade
    Joined: Sep 11, 2006
    Posts: 273

    Nightshade
    Member

    My personal opinion on louvers is not to get them.

    I had them done on the decklid of my 58 Bug and within a month I had traded the decklid off for a stock "W" decklid because I hated them and it didn't do anything for airflow.
     
  6. Corn Fed
    Joined: May 16, 2002
    Posts: 2,860

    Corn Fed
    Member

    I think the question is more if you care that your engine is going to get wet than airflow. If you don't care about water, then go and get it done. If you don't want the water getting in, then don't louver it. I personally wouldn't stick a piece of metal behind the louvers because of the rust that will form.
     
  7. HotRodHon
    Joined: Jun 29, 2004
    Posts: 1,424

    HotRodHon
    Member

    I second that.
    Water got in while I was at work and when the car started . . .
    BAM . bent connecting rod.:mad:
    It was a great engine too.

    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=39044


    Craig:cool:
     

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  8. I like louvers, particularly if they are functional. I've had them on hoods and side panels on my rods for years. I recommend closed top air cleaners and some sort of seal under the hold-down bolts/screws so that water can't run down the bolt into the carb and engine. So a little water gets on your engine, so what? Are your hoods hermetically sealed so that the engine never needs cleaning or light maintenance?

    If you don't have air cleaners or use stacks then louvers aren't for you.

    Charlie
     
  9. old beet
    Joined: Sep 25, 2002
    Posts: 5,750

    old beet
    Member

    I'm from Washington. My F-1 has had Louvers for over 30 years never a problem with water. Wife's 49 Merc Louvered for 4 years, never a problem. We don't have a garage or carport, both cars are naked all the time. Oh, and yes I own a Louver press. Never heard of an engine running hotter with Louvers, but have seen many run cooler.

    ///////////
    //////////// OLDBEET
     
  10. Rio Grande Valley Deuce
    Joined: Jul 10, 2005
    Posts: 529

    Rio Grande Valley Deuce
    Member

    Louvers are cool - but I second what HotRodHon said.:eek:

    On the other hand, it's your ride.

    RGV
     
  11. Nightshade
    Joined: Sep 11, 2006
    Posts: 273

    Nightshade
    Member

    I suppose it depends on what kind of carb setup you are running too. a filtered carb system wouldn't have an issue whereas a stack or open design would probably suck it up pretty good.
     
  12. Tuck
    Joined: May 14, 2001
    Posts: 5,645

    Tuck
    Tech Editor
    from MINNESOTA
    1. Early Hemi Tech

    Yep bugman is right hahaha.... Louvers are great when your caught in a snow storm, actually defrost your whole windsheild...

    the guy in the 55 didn't have them... or wipers... or defrost... hahaha... we borrowed a squeegee from the station and used it to wipe the windshield clean.

    a drawback is water on the wires when it rains... your engine compartment is basically open to the elements.

    They're cool though...
     

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  13. kustombuilder
    Joined: Sep 18, 2002
    Posts: 7,754

    kustombuilder
    Member
    from Novi, MI

    yeah. what Charlie said. he's been doin louvers FOREVER (sory for the "old guy" crack, could'nt resist) :D... i've been doin them for a few months now. my buddy built a realy nice press and we've been louverin everything we can get our hands on. it can be tideous work makin sure they all stay straight and in line with each other. we've gotten it down pretty good.

    personaly i don't get why people are so worried about thier damn motor gettin wet. it gets wet with every puddle you drive through. put a real air cleaner on it and you should'nt have any trouble. we louvered the hood on the neighbor kid's daily driver 83 Chevy truck (my old truck) and he has'nt had any problems and it's been rainin like hell the past couple weeks.

    if ya like em and ya want em then just do it.
     
  14. 49ratfink
    Joined: Feb 8, 2004
    Posts: 17,945

    49ratfink
    Member
    from California

    ....had a 49 chevy sedan with a 350..... under the hood got hotter than shit, it would then heat up the interior to the point where the dash was hot to the touch. this car had the factory firewall insulation along with dynamat and carpet with regular carpet insulation. I'm thinking all the engine heat had nowhere to escape to since the motor was down there pretty tight compared to the six. motor prolly ran a little hotter also due to the fact that thair did not flow through the radiator as it should have since it didn't leave the engine compartment as gfast as it should have....

    the 49 coupe I'm building now has 75 louvers per side on the hood... I can't see how this would do anything but help the hot dash problem and help it to run cooler. mostly though I did it cuz it looks cool.

    we all make certain sacrifices in order for our cars to be cool. as for water.... I'm thinking this car will never see the rain, so that isn't an issue.
     
  15. 327-365hp
    Joined: Feb 5, 2006
    Posts: 5,373

    327-365hp
    Member
    from Mass

    They only drawback to louvers is waxing in between 'em. But that's only if you have shiney paint :D
     
  16. Tuck
    Joined: May 14, 2001
    Posts: 5,645

    Tuck
    Tech Editor
    from MINNESOTA
    1. Early Hemi Tech

    my buddy nate as a press too- we punched the louvers on my galaxie hood... I never had a problem with water and the galaxie... but I did with the shoe, but then I had old wires...
     

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  17. I'm with OLD BEETon this one,,,LOUVERS = HOT ROD {{{{{{{ HRP
     
  18. HotRodHon
    Joined: Jun 29, 2004
    Posts: 1,424

    HotRodHon
    Member

    I had a real air cleaner on it.
    An old Caddy side scoop. But alot of air cleaners have a dip where the wing nut goes to hold it on. Water collects at that spot.
    A rubber seal probably would help but I'm a little gun shy right now.
    The problem isn't when you're driving. It's if it sits out in the rain not moving.

    Craig
     
  19. LANCE-SPEED
    Joined: Aug 10, 2006
    Posts: 2,259

    LANCE-SPEED
    Member

    louvers are kool I have them on my 68 chev and my 2002 chev, I've had them on just about every car I've built!!! On the older cars they've been done for looks. On my 02 it actually runs 10-15 degrees cooler. True they are a pain in the ass prepping for paint and cleaning and waxing but its worth it!. As far as the engine getting wet????Who care dont you clean it anyway??? Any experienced louver god will know where to punch em as to not effect the electrical system. check out SIR MICHAELS in Huntington Beach, Ca 800-900-4944 "THE BEST AROUND" WWW.SIRMICHAELS.COM
    [​IMG]
    5" 4" 3" STAGER
    [​IMG]
    6 ROWS OF 4"
     
  20. Mike Paul
    Joined: Oct 10, 2003
    Posts: 931

    Mike Paul
    Member

    What about on a trunklid? If you don't want your stuff in your trunk to get wet, Garbage bags?
     
  21. Bugman
    Joined: Nov 17, 2001
    Posts: 3,483

    Bugman
    Member

    Put a second skin on teh inside of the lid with drains at the bottom.
     
  22. fab32
    Joined: May 14, 2002
    Posts: 13,985

    fab32
    Member Emeritus

    If your ignition system is up to par and you've sealed the inlet to the carb adequately it shouldn't be a problem. It's one visual that just says "hot rod" before your close enough to check out the details. I've got 5 years on the '32 with a well ventilated hood and I've been to events where it's rained all night. Always crossed my fingers in the morning but it's never failed to start.

    Frank
     
  23. old beet
    Joined: Sep 25, 2002
    Posts: 5,750

    old beet
    Member

    If yer around Seattle, we can do 3-4in holes. New machine, clean cuts. PM me.....OLDBEET
     
  24. A Boner
    Joined: Dec 25, 2004
    Posts: 5,798

    A Boner
    Member

    Did you do the prep work before painting your car? I did, and sanding in, on, and around the louvers is a pain in the neck! Waxing is a piece of cake. :D
     
  25. Leadsled51
    Joined: Dec 21, 2001
    Posts: 333

    Leadsled51
    Member

    I have the frog mouth type scoops, with a three two setup. Has anyone had a problem with water with these type scoops? I see a lot of hoodless rods, so I guess you cant get anymore open than that. I don't care about it getting water on the engine, its in the engine that scares me a little. I wont be doing it myself, there is a place in Cleveland OH, (KC Louveres), that I would be going to. They had a setup at the Choppers show, and looked like they did a good job. Thanks for all the replies.
     
  26. Louvers are cool, never had a problem with water.

    I don't run a hood on my model A and have never had weather related
    problems either driving or parked.
     
  27. burger
    Joined: Sep 19, 2002
    Posts: 2,347

    burger
    Member
    from burbs

    Thru college I had a '65 Fairlane with a T-bolt style teardrop hoodscoop. I parked outside every night. Never had a problem with water getting into the carb or wiring, but the engine did aquire a lot of "patina" in short order.
     
  28. Clark
    Joined: Jan 14, 2001
    Posts: 5,104

    Clark
    Member

    I love the look of louvers and the T will have them in the decklid. It's nice to have a friend with a louver press :)

    If you are a painter you will hate sanding them.

    I always thought if I had a hood or trunk with louver and wanted to keep the water out . I thought that magnetic sign material could be stuck on the inside. Should keep most of it out.
    Clark
     
  29. Louvers give a special look to a special car.
    Plus . . . they're cool . . . no other way to say it, louvers seem to make the car into something it's not.
    Probably because they are a race oriented item.

    That said, I have the hood top and side panels of my 32 roadster punched with quite a few louvers.
    It's never been a problem in the rain.
    Maybe the front mounted distributor helps, but what does help is the Accell plug wire boots that seal well at both ends.

    We have run the car all day in a light - moderate rain with no probs.

    I've been caught in a couple of thunderstorms, one in Central California, had to park the car for a while at the post office to do a couple of things.
    The interior didn't get wet running at highway speeds except for where the water came in at the lower corners of the windshield when the rain got heavy.
    My fault cuz I didn't cut the weatherstripping at a 45 and glue it or overlap it together there.
    Lack of a sidewind helps keep the interior dry.

    Here in Sunny Arizona, I got caught in a killer cloudburst with some sidewinds.
    Water came in through the open - side windows? - and I got a little wet, but not bad.
    Again, on a trip to the post office -- I really need to quit going there in the roadster when it's cloudy.

    The only disadvantage I've found with hood top louvers is when running in-town speeds on a hot day, hot air from the louvers comes in the cowl vent.
    Once you get past 40 or so, air flow over the hood changes and air at ambient temps flows into the cowl vent.

    My 31 on 32 rails project hood top doesn't have louvers due to the in-town heat problem, but the side panels will be louvered.

    One thing to keep in mind is that factories don't spend money on cars if they don't have to.
    Henry Ford had good reasons to louver the hood sides of his cars.

    As far as louvers making an engine run hotter, surprising to me.
    Air carries about 40% of the engine heat away and factories study underhood air flow so as to improve airflow.
    They will move accessories to improve airflow when they can.
    Makes sense when you realize the underhood temps on some cars can touch on 300 degrees F.

    I've talked to several guys who had mild overheating problems that were aided by the addition of louvers.

    If you have to park the car overnight, cover the distributor, alternator and the air cleaner if necessary with a plastic trash bag or similar.
    Just be sure to remove it in the morning.

    If you don't it makes a helluva noise when you start the engine....:D
     
  30. Old beet and anyone else for that matter. probably what happened on the five five is that the louvres let the airflow over the top of the radiator rather than through it. But the main idea behind louvres is to let heat out of the engine bay and normally it works that way. I'm going to suggest that there was a little piece of rubber or a plate missing that more or less seals up the radiator or core support area. most of the time on old cars folks remove that stuff to make it look more kustom.

    As for wet mill, louvres don't normally let much water in, I've seen old coupes with the roof louvred and getting wet was never really a problem. keep a good carb cover on your motor and your ignition sealed properly and you should never even have a problem with the mill. Hell we run 'em sans hood right? Motor cycles don't have hoods either and they get parked and run in the rain.

    Louvres are something that you either like or you don't, if they are on there for looks only I'm guessing that the only way you'll regrete them is if you change your mind. And if they are on there for function you'll probably never change your mind.

    My thoughts is to get them done by someone that has some idea what they are doing BTW. I've seen some pretty botched louvre jobs done over the years.
     

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