Radiator question

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2013: Radiator question
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Robert Green on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 07:22 am:

Radiator shop said they didn't want to take the change and fix a radiator that old! So the question is does anyone know where i can find a new or used one for a fair price? Next question do they make radiators like this in steel or plastic? We are not restoring the car to a show car level we just want a safe car to drive!! Thanks, Robert


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 07:26 am:

I got a brand new radiator from The Brass Works in California and it's awesome. It looks amazing and cools like a champ. Might be a bit cost prohibitive at $1200 - but it's the best money I've spent on the car. Berg's also makes good radiators and they're a bit more reasonable at $850.

Personally, I wouldn't buy a used one, I'd just get a new one from either of those two places. It's just too important to have the car running cool to not get a new radiator.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tim Wrenn on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 07:34 am:

Robert, yep, that is definitely trash!
Like Seth said, get a new one, I've never heard of Berg's but now I'm gonna look them up, 'cause I'm considering taking my round tube rad out of my '15 and putting in a flat tube one as I hope to drive it a lot, and the round tube rads just tend to run a bit warmer for my liking. That said, if you're gonna do a lot of driving down in your hot climate, you definitely will want to go "out of correctness" and get the flat tube!
Tim


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tim Wrenn on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 07:37 am:

Robert-me again!
Just looked up Bergs and it appears they only deal with the black radiators, you need brass for a '16 as that's the last year for it. So check out Macs or Snyders, they also sell Brassworks, and are actually a couple bucks cheaper.

Tim


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 07:46 am:

I'm pretty sure Berg's makes the brass rads, but maybe only in limited production runs. You just have to call them and ask.

It may or may not be exactly $1200, but that's about what it was after tax and shipping. I'm 99% confident that the price from any of the distributors is the same as buying directly from Brass Works. Plus, if you call them direct, they can give you better info on when you are likely to receive your radiator.

Just FYI - I don't think either company keeps them on the shelf, so you are looking at a month (or in my case 6 weeks) before they actually manufacture and ship the rad out to you.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 08:09 am:

Google Tom's Radiator Service in Sabetha. He did Rob's pre-T cars. I didn't want to pay the price of a new radiator, even from Berg's, and I wasn't in love with the ways in which the new ones are different from the originals. I sent mine to him for a new core and saved a few Benjamins, and he did a great job.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dan B on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 09:34 am:

Middletown Radiator in Pennsylvania is where I'd send it. They're the best. And looks aren't everything. Hard to say what kind of shape its in until they pressure test it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dan B on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 09:36 am:

Should have mentioned that they fixed both my honeycomb and a brass radiator that looked like yours with a less broken fins. They've always got something old in there that they're breathing new life into.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Robert Green on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 11:02 am:

Just a question what makes a flat tub radiator work better then a round tub radiator and does one cost more then the other? Robert


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 11:05 am:

The flat tubes have more surface area contacting the fins, so they transfer heat better. I've idled without overheating or comin close in 95 degree weather. My flat tube cools like a dream. I believe they are actually a little cheaper than a regular round tube. You have to really look really close to see that there's any difference when the radiator is on the car.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Richard Eagle Ida Fls on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 11:22 am:

You can't beat the new radiators. I bought a new Brassworks for my '15 in '85 and it seeps a little now. Too bad there aren't more craftsmen who can still fix the old radiators. However if you are willing to learn how to solder and take some time you could fix it yourself. I repaired two radiators that looked that bad and they cool very well for old radiators. The only real trick to soldering is to get the brass very very clean. There is some good "how to" info in Dyke's, Ford Service and probably on the internet.
Rich


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By James Chochole on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 11:36 am:

Be careful if a shop does a pressure test- remember these aren't pressurized rads, only a few pounds or you could open seams and weak spots.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jim Thode Chehalis Washington on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 12:56 pm:

Seth is correct that a flat tube radiator is much more efficient then a round tube radiator and most folks that see the car will not know the difference. However to someone that knows the difference a flat tube radiator can be spotted with just a glance at a 100 feet. The round tube has a thicker tubes, a tube spacing of 3/4" and there are only 19 rows. A flat tube radiator has a spacing of 5/8" to 1/2" and has 29 to 37 rows. I can see that Steve's new radiator is a flat tube and has a different appearance then a round tube.

So in the end, you get much better cooling from a flat tube radiator but there is a difference in appearance for those that know what they are looking at.

Jim


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hal Davis-SE Georgia on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 01:15 pm:

Not only is there more tube contact with the fin, there is more water contact with the tubes. The flat tube is a much better design, and like was said above, most people won't know the difference. The cost is comparable, but the flat tubes are a little cheaper, but not much.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Henry Petrino in Modesto, CA on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 01:25 pm:

I have a couple of questions and I'm not trying to start an argument, just curious:

I understand that a flat tube radiator offers a greater rate of heat exchange due to the increased contact with the fins. However, as I understand the thermo-siphon system, the hotter the engine gets the faster the water moves thereby increasing cooling, sort of an "automatic" thermostat. So, assuming a good clean water jacket and radiator and no other engine problems to confuse the issue, will the engine actually run any cooler with the flat tubes than it would with the round tubes? Since the radiator is more efficient doesn't the flow just slow down a little and the system maintains the same engine temperature? Furthermore, if it does cause the engine to run cooler, should it?

I imagine that extremely hot weather could certainly be a factor, but my questions are aimed at most "normal" conditions, say up to 100 degrees F.

I've always wondered about this and this thread seemed a good opportunity to ask. Thanks!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 01:40 pm:

Somebody smarter/more experienced than me will have to answer you.

However, for what little it may be worth, I believe that the cooling requirements of the average T engine are capable of going beyond what a round tube in good shape can provide, even in only moderately warm weather conditions.

As for whether it changes the operating temperature of the engine or not - I have no idea. I think the water has to get awfully hot for the thermo-syphon action to actually start working in the first place. All of this goes out the window if you are running a water pump.

But I think, just like you said, a flat tube would just have a slower overall flow rate because the water going into the engine is doing more cooling than a round tube would be, however, the operating temp would stay the same since you are not forcing that colder through. I could be way off though.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 02:21 pm:

Jim is correct. My core is flat tube. As Seth mentioned, flat tube costs a little less than round tube, but the reason I chose to go with the flat tube is because this car is for go, not show. I want to be able to drive it during high summer without worrying about overheating. Most people attending my car show (the one that happens whenever I drive) won't know the difference.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By john kuehn on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 03:22 pm:

If yours still has good tanks on it, you will save you some money to have it recored with a flat tube core. If your not building a show car no one will know the difference.
A lot of radiator shops 'get scared' when you have an old car radiator. It usually scares them away from working on it much less installing a new core.
The shops are around that will do it. You just have to find one.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hal Davis-SE Georgia on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 05:17 pm:

Believe it or not, the thermosyphon is nothing more than a gravity flow system. The reason hot water rises from the engine is because it is being forced upward by the more dense cooler water coming from the radiator. The water in the radiator falls to the bottom as it is cooled and becomes more dense. It won't flow until the engine heat reduces the density enough that the cooler water in the radiator and water pipe force it up.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Val Soupios on Thursday, May 09, 2013 - 05:51 pm:

Bergs makes brass radiators just call them. He has trouble keeping up with the demand and does not advertise them. I have two of his brass radiators and they are great. Just be prepared to wait a bit. I have a radiator for you from my '14 that holds water and cools fairly well if you need something to tide you over until a new one is made for you. I am in Florida and found that the old radiator was inadequate when the temperatures got into the 90's so that is why I opted for a new one from Berg. I would not rely on an old radiator for a permanent replacement. No matter how good they look they will never cool well enough.


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