My original radiator doesn't leak, looks nice, but can't keep the engine cool on 100 degree + days. It is an older recore with using original brass and tanks, probably from the 1970's. We are planning to tour the car a lot in the future. I expect it will be reliable after all the recent maintenance and a new flat tube radiator.
It should just bolt in the car right? Well........
I started on Sunday morning at 08:30 by draining the anti freeze and removing the hood.
Disconnecting the choke wire came next.
The radiator support rod has a lock nut at the firewall that needs to be loosened so the rod can turn.
Remove the cotter pins from the radiator nuts, then remove the nuts. The carbide gas hoses were disconnected and pulled out.
Bolts were removed from the water inlet and outlet.
There is not supposed to be a locking nut at the radiator end, but this car had one. Vise grips with a piece of duct tape on the rod to keep it from being gouged while tuning.
The radiator can be removed.
Next came clean up of the parts that will be re - used. I started by degreasing the radiator inlet tube and then gave it a quick polish using a hand held drill and a sisal wheel with red jeweler's rouge. It took about 5 minutes to give an acceptable shine worthy of the engine compartment.
Scotchbrite was used on the ends of the tube to give good adhesion for a thin coat of RTV. The inside of the rubber hoses were also cleaned with scotchbrite for the same reason.
Scotchbrite was used again to remove surface rust from the clamps.
Now we come to the star of the show - a new Brassworks radiator, drop shipped from Brassworks by Chaffins.
Inside the box is the new radiator. The brass had turned pink from moisture trapped in the box, a typical event when expanding foam is used and not allowed to cool completely before being sealed.
Since the new radiator had no hole for the choke rod I had to measure the original one to get the proper location.
The original hole is 7/32" diameter.
Tape was applied to allow easily visible marks, and to protect the polished brass from shavings.
I pilot drilled with #40.
Final diameter #21 drill.
Debur with a 7/16" hand held bit:
One hole completed.
Next we remove the petcock from the old radiator.
Clean the threads with Scotchbrite, apply a thin strip of Teflon tape, and tighten snug with duct tape preventing the vise grip from marring the surfaces. Excess Teflon is peeled away after tightening for a clean appearance.
Taper valve bodies need to be tapped with a brass mallet to ensure no leakage after closing.
Installation is the reverse of disassembly, with a super thin coat of RTV used on the gasket surfaces. After installation I realized Brassworks had forgotten to make holes for the gas hoses.
The original holes are 7/16" diameter with a formed flange. After a bit of measuring and planning I started making the holes by #40 pilot drilling.
Progressively I stepped up from #40 to #21 to 1/4" to 1/2".
A countersink was used to debur both sides of each hole to prevent cracking.
I flanged the hole using a 12" long taper punch and a rubber mallet. Carefully. For some reason I accidentally deleted the picture for that step. In any case the hoses are all hooked up again.
The original gasket was made from paper. It is good for one use. I made one from 3/32" lead sheet that is much more durable. Filling the radiator with fresh water / anti freeze mix and polishing away the pink corrosion was the last thing.
Look out, Jelf. You have some competition. Very nice pictures, Royce. I like seeing these brass cars.
Not quite up to Jelf standards, no self portrait!!!
Great job Royce...well explained and documented!
Sidebar question. How do you get so many pictures in one post? Special dispensation...ha-ha?
I can never get more than 2 or 3 to load an I then get the little red x on the post for anything more than that.
The red X in the preview screen does not mean the picture will not load in the final post. It simply means it did not load in the preview. You can make all the pics show in the preview screen by right clicking on each one and selecting "show picture".
There is no limit to the number of pictures per post.
Great job and the photos & discussion will be a help for others in the future.
Hap l9l5 cut off
Royce, I too replaced my 1911 brass radiator with a flat tube from Brass works. One thing I noticed was the brass used seems to pit easily and the brass seems thinner than originals were. Other than that, you will like the cooling effect a little better, but over 100 degrees is asking for a miracle. Just keep moving forward. Don't idle too long in one place and you will be happy with your purchase. Kevin in Utah.
The lock nut on the support rod is beneficial
as it keeps the radiator from vibrating and
stripping the threads.
You mentioned filled with fresh water/ antifreeze. Did you mean distilled water/antifreeze ?
Very detailed & nicely done tutorial, Royce !
No distilled water. Deionized water.
What's the difference between distilled, purified, deionized, and where can one purchase deionized water?
Chris is right, Royce. You need to use the self timer on at least one.
Nice job Steve ... er ... Royce.
Gosh, it's so hard to tell you two apart.
Your hands look sooo identical. <grin> .
Purified water can be most any treated water, filtered, distilled, or any of several types of deionization processes. All it means is that something has been removed.
Distilled water, is just that. Boiled into steam then the steam is cooled and condenses back to water but without the dissolved solids found in the feed water.
Deionized water has had impurities removed through any of several processes. Some are chemical processes some are mechanical such as reverse osmosis.
PS My Walmart carries both deionized and distilled water.
Coulda saved yourself a lot of time and all that brass radiator money by just putting on a water pump...
Good job & great pictures Royce. However, I'm wondering why the choke and 1/2" holes were not already punched/drilled by Brassworks.
You did a great job....but not everyone has the talent to do what you did. It may look simple to others....however, drilling a 1/2" hole in thin brass is tricky, especially on a new radiator. Not criticizing.....your work....just not happy that Brassworks did not finish the radiator.
I just ordered a new Berg radiator for my newly acquired 1929 Model A roadster P/U. Talking to Gary, he checks out the fit of each Model A radiator in an original shell before it is accepted for sale. Have those that bought early brass T radiators from Berg.....had to do what Royce did before installing their new radiator?
I hope the answer is No!
Thank you Royce
Thank you Royce! Great thread and wonderful Pictures.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
Just a suggestion.....instead of making a gasket for the filler, try using a large size O-ring placed inside. I know an O-ring is not original....however, it's still working in my 13 radiator after over 10 years use. The O-ring has retained it shape...has not flatten out or cracked.
What makes me wonder after years of hearing the pure model T had no faults why go to a flat core now?? Bud.
I bought a bergs for my 14. The holes for the hoses were there, but I had to drill the choke hole, I also had to cut bend and resolder the over flow tube to clear the frame. The top tank under the front edge of the hood was crudly cut shaped and sodered. This is noticable when the hood is closed. As this car is a driver its livable. I questioned him about it and he told me that to do it right he would have to have a die made and it would cost to much. This is one reason he stopped making them. I does cool. I also bought one for my Model A, no issues with that one. I bought one for the 24 Im doing, but havent gotten that far yet.
I had scraps of lead sheet in my gasket box. I don't have any O rings that size laying around for free. I often use what I have instead of going to the store and buying something.
A wise man once said "The fastest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it back in your wallet".