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Trans cooler (frame vs radiator type & placement)

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Crazy Legs, Mar 13, 2013.

  1. Crazy Legs
    Joined: Sep 3, 2008
    Posts: 266

    Crazy Legs

    Its time to find a trans cooler for my 54 Ford 4L80E trans (don't ask lol) and I've been planning on getting a standard cooler that goes in front of the radiator but I've been thinking about the frame mount heatsink type as well.

    My main concern is,
    1) My car is super low even while driving and I'm worried there wont be much air under the car to cool the frame mounted type, especially that big 4L80E trans.

    2) There isn't any room in front of the condenser but there is 1-1/8" space between the condenser and the radiator that would be perfect for a cooler. Can you think of any reason that wouldn't be a good idea of using this space?

  2. 40StudeDude
    Joined: Sep 19, 2002
    Posts: 9,476


    On my '55 Cadillac, which is low as well, I mounted my GM pickup truck tranny cooler (about 9" wide by 11") on the passenger's side frame rail, then I built a small "box" around it and opened some louvers in it...pointed the louvers forward so they would catch's been under the car for three years now (summers) and haven't had a problem with it yet...just a thot for you...!!!

  3. Ice man
    Joined: Mar 12, 2008
    Posts: 984

    Ice man

    I used an old Refrigeration Condenser (retired HAVC) They do a super job and are very cheep, usually free cause most were steel and not copper. Brazed copper stubs on and never had a problem. Iceman
  4. Crazy Legs
    Joined: Sep 3, 2008
    Posts: 266

    Crazy Legs

    Interesting, thanks guys

  5. saltflats
    Joined: Aug 14, 2007
    Posts: 11,252

    from Missouri

    I think you would want more than 11/8 inch space to work with between the condenser and radiator.
  6. jmpowie
    Joined: Dec 2, 2006
    Posts: 202


    I only have a 18" frame mount cooler on my th350 and it seems to cool fine. The fins on the frame mount are 3/4" long it does get rid of a lot of heat. Are you going to use the radiator plus a cooler or just a cooler? How high is your stall? The higher the stall the more heat it makes, so you need more cooling.
  7. dreracecar
    Joined: Aug 27, 2009
    Posts: 3,258

    from so-cal

    Is your trans getting overheated now or are you planing to tow somthing?
  8. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,348


    What he said. Unless you're planning on pulling a 40 ft. 5th wheel, a livestock trailer, or have a 1,000 HP twin turbo'd LS ahead that brute of a trans, you'll be fine with that.

    I sort of hope you've got a twin turbo'd LS...:cool:

    You could possbily tuck one behind the grill on the core support, as long as air could get around it, or plumb it all the way to the back in the frame kick over the rear axle, it doesn't HAVE to be in front.

  9. Crazy Legs
    Joined: Sep 3, 2008
    Posts: 266

    Crazy Legs

    saltflats, this radiator, fans, and condenser is from a 02 Camaro and its all factory.

    jmpowie, the radiator I've got is for non-auto (no cooler inside) so this will be a stand alone cooler. Currently the stall is still stock, but I see in the future going to 3600 max w/ lock up.

    dreracecar, I'm not sure, this is a 100% new build TBD if any of this even works lol.- not planning on towing.

    flyinbrian48, LOL I agree, no twins......yet ;) I agree on the core support or in the back.

    Thanks for the help guys!

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