I know there has been threads on this before but I think the material is outdated and needs updating.
Simply put, is there any radiator core out there that is currently available and will work in a T radiator (low style)?
I realize Berg's makes one but are there alternatives?
Thanks in advance....
Is this on a budget or can you spend money? If I were you I would go an buy a new radiator from Brass Works. They run around $800.00. And if you really have to be on a budget I would find a really perfect honeycomb radiator or really nice original and just have it pressure tested and cleaned and use that.
Cores are readily available for black radiators from Texas Radiator in Dallas, Texas. He is a repair shop but his main business is supplying cores to radiator shops and complete radiators to repair shops.
His brass radiator man has retired but might come back to fix a brass unit. Call the owner, wilson Peters and ask him what he can do.
This is a brass radiator from a 1915 touring.
A new brassworks radiator with shipping is around $1200. Not really in the budget right now.
I will give Texas radiator a call. Thanks for the reference.
I think I remember hearing that there was a core from a jeep that would work. Maybe Mr. Peters will have an idea.
I am cheap. I also don't have gobs of money to spend. For those reasons I'd have an old radiator recored or I'd buy a new one. I wouldn't waste money buying an old one (90 to 100 years old), trying to make it work, and then spending the money I was going to spend anyway for recoring or buying a new radiator. Decades of vibration cause fins to come loose from tubes and stop cooling efficiently. If you want to gamble, you might get lucky and find an original that's OK. But I don't buy lottery tickets or make other sucker bets, so I'll pass. As for your specific question, yes it can be done. I'm having the radiator for my 1915 recored by tom's Radiator Service in Sabetha, KS. (If you decide to go new, both Berg's and Brassworks radiators have good reputations. Being tight with a dollar, I lean toward Berg's.
I don't think your cheap Steve. Cheap is spending the least amount without really considering the value your receiving.
Frugal is spending the least amount while trying to ensure the item will last and be servicable.
Frugal is good.
Now if I just knew exactly how long I was going to live, maybe I could afford to spend a little more on the T !!
Bud, last core I priced was 2 years ago. 350 for one that would work. Still to high for me so I do my usual thing of finding a good core from a truck or bus and cutting a chunk out to serve the purpose. Got one the other day from a bus that will work well, has the plastic tanks which no one wants to repair but has good brass headers. Oops, giving away my secrets! KB
I'm working on a '13 roadster that came with a '15 radiator I knew nothing about. I put it on, filled it with water, and to my surprise it didn't leak! I've let the car idle for over two hours, and it doesn't boil either. I lucked out with this one. As far a new radiators, I'd like to see someone make a radiator exactly like Ford did, with interchangable parts too. I sent my old time radiator made by the original Brassworks to them to be repaired thinking it had a bad core. It turned out it was the water inlet that was leaking. They didn't even check it, and I wound up with a new radiator that I didn't even want. I didn't discover any of this until I asked for my old parts back. I'm not at all happy with the current Brassworks. What really iritates me is they don't use rivets for the side panels to the top tank like Ford did, and they can vibrate loose. I hope someday a reputable company will come along that makes a good product.
Old rads ususlly have the tubes well insulated from the fins from salt and just plain age. No amount of cleaning will fix that. The real test of a rad is climbing a long hill. Would be interested in what kind of pricing the Tex shop has on cores.
I just called the shop in Dallas and the guy told me the core price would be around 400.00-500.00.
If you could find a radiator of any sort you might could adapt it to fit a T if the specs. were close enough and save more money.
I had 2 original radiators I repaired 3-4 times and finally saved some money (by not fooling with them anymore!) and bought a new Bergs.
I came to the conclusion that if I want to drive a T for any extended amount of time you have to have a good radiator.
The time you spend in looking and spending time,gas,and shipping money will closely add up to buying a new Bergs. I know because I did it.
I understand that everybody has budget, but so much hinges on proper cooling. I think the comments that work along the line, "been there, done that, should of bought a new radiator to start with,".... kind of sum it up. Sometimes you just have to pay to play....
I talked with the guy from Berg's at Hershey last fall,I bought a VW Bug muffler from him.
Anyway the core was up there in price for my 23TT only a couple hundred more and I could have a New Radiator. Nice folks,great display.
if you had a black era radiator id say look around for a servicable used one. they are cheap.
you cant expect a used one to work just as well as a new one, they most likely will leak, and continue to spring new leaks. so carry some water with you and throw some pepper in the radiator, its that easy.
Im not even cheap, im what you call "non existent capital" i too have a an old radiator that has been repaired too many times, and every now and then i pull it off and have to resolder the the little pin holes that show up. eventually i will replace the radiator with either a beautiful used one or new. but buying one right now is laughable.
I have an original radiator that came out of my '25 coupe. Has a little rust/rot on the end of the bottom outlet. I would let it go to anyone who will pay for me to get it boxed up and shipping.
Michael, If you still have it I be glad to pay for shipping and handling. Thanks, Bob Shirley 903 824 1949
Radiator has found a home. Thanks to all those who responded.
2930 Duluth st.
In west sacramento
Will repair,rod out & recore any & all antique radiators
Why not buy from Bergs? Their radidiators aren't expensive and they do nice work.
nothing is working for me today. I'm gonna go take a nap.
Mike, I believe you were trying to say:
G'day Mike, Danial,
Try stuffed... It's easier to speel, spill, spell.
George posted this about using a Forklift Radiator back in 2008.
By George on Wednesday, December 24, 2008 - 11:51 am:
If you want authenticity, then the above are the sources.
If you want something that works and works well with about 5 times the cooling capacity. but says dang all to 'pure' [is flat tube and crinkly fins between the tubes] there is a stock core for a Clark fork lift that is almost identical to the T high radiator! Forget the Clark number, but a radiator shop found it for me for 'Chugger'a while back.
Chugger is and always will be a parts car that runs...lol...and I was going about buying 25$ used radiators and pinching shut leaky tubes to keep her running. Finally got to the point where what was out and about for 25-50 bucks had too many leaky tubes to pinch shut! So asked the local rad shop what he could do concerning a more modern core.
Took him two trashed ones over to use for parts, and three days later he told me to come on over. The Clark core was exact for thickness and for height for the high radiator...but 1" too wide. He cut it back, clipped off and sealed the outer tube set at the headers, and soldered up a tank using my old parts. Long and short of it, got in and out for under 200 bucks!
OK, so it has a modern core, it has some 5 times the cooling capacity, and it fit like a glove...but for the price for 'Chugger'...sure solved the problem cheap! And at anything more than 1 MPH who can tell?
my two cents is for what its worth, buy a new radiator and be done with it. Get a flat tube type also, they cool much better.
My brass flat tube from the Brassworks is the business. It's gorgeous and works like a champ. I idled in 100 degree weather in the sweltering South and the motometer only got up to Summer Average. Normally it doesn't even get to the center line. I'm not sure what temperatures that actually works out to but I never have an issue with overheating.
I half agree. Black era, go new. Brass, recore. I want to keep my pretty brass tank, which is better than the new ones. The recore also saves a couple of Benjamins.
Just an update on the radiator problem that started the thread.
I found a local radiator shop in the area that said they would rod out my old radiator. I didn't have much faith as I had tried every method known to man and forum to flush the radiator.
Well he rodded it out and its MUCH better. In fact it may be fine but I will have no way of knowing until the summer arrives with its 90 + temperatures. Right now in 65 - 75 deg weather theres no problem.
One footnote, my radiator guy told me that he would be able to find a good used core with no problems. He said that any radiator that was the same height and depth could be cutdown in width and made to work. We didn't have to do this .... but he seemed confident.
Well my fingers are crossed with my old 4 row round tube radiator and Atlas water pump . Except for a few drips from the radiator, she is keeping Nellybell cool.
How long does a new radiator last? 10 years? More?
What is it worth to not have to worry about it and the possible engine damage?
What is the amortized cost of the price of the radiator divided by 10(years)?
$10/month for a new Brass radiator that only lasts 10 years? If it lasts 20 years than it's half the amount.
The old motto, pay me now or pay me later.
There used to be several radiator shops in the Houston area that did recore work at a reasonable price. Now they say they no longer can find the cores. By the time I buy the core and have it put in at a radiator shop, I am almost at the new radiator price and I still have those banged up top and bottom tanks.
Bergs is my source for radiators and if I plan it right, I can pick up the radiator at the pre-45 Chickasha swap meet and save shipping.
Cores are readily available from Texas Radiator in Dallas. He can recore a black Model T radiator for $300 plus some change. He can do brass radiators also. I believe he is a distributor for radiator cores both antique and modern. The owner is Wilson Peters. He just reworked my 24 radiator which he recored in 1999, rodding it out and fixing a small leak at the bottom.
What are Model T radiator tubes made out of? Brass? Steel? Aluminum? Jim Patrick
Hi, Jim P! Most of the tubes are brass. I don't know about the earlier ones, but some from the '20s are simple rolled flat brass with a crimped and soldered seam the full length. I have seen a few that blew out from too much pressure. I always wonder if the car boiled big time or did someone use too much air trying to check for leaks?
Hope you are doing well.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, w2
Wayne:Think hard water on the blown tubes. (ice)
Likely right, Jack P, you are likely quite right.
Bought a rad from bergs for my 1926 tudor i got the updated version because I didnt what ant probles overheating. I run it in parades i have no problems was a great choice
Info; "dont judge a book by its covers. couple yrs
ago my fan went thru my radiator (1959 Continental)
problem is, its got A/C and the rad. is different.
So a friend of a friend sent my to a place in
Weymouth Mass. The place is in an Industrial Park. I
figure I know what I'm in for. So i bring my radiator to the counter man, Instantly he says 1958
thru 1960 Lincoln with A/C. I'm speachless. Ok what
do you want recore or a new one. How much new, he
says $180 plus tax. Being freindly he says come on
behind closed doors with forklift way up there brand new. Along the way rows of brass and low and
high model T's packards Toyotas Hupmo's. The place is huge. The end result is- He says we are
Modene, we built radiators we are OEM for many all
makes. On my short tour I saw huge brass maybe for FWD trucks or something being built. So I didnt judge that book too good. I thought by the
looks of the building I didnt stand a chance wrong. and just to think the place was right under my nose. I suppose they are all over the
country. I beleive Napa carries Modene. sam