Water pump or no?

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2015: Water pump or no?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By wes heustess on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 02:00 pm:

Anybody still run water pumps on their ts? The waaam museum does not. Mine is bad and I'm thinking about pulling it. Opinions?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 02:02 pm:

If you have a good radiator and clean out the water jacket in the block and the head, your T will run perfectly without a water pump. They are a Band-Aid for a problem and create several problems of their own.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Henry Petrino in Modesto, CA on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 02:06 pm:

What Seth said. If you pull your water pump and it overheats, another water pump is NOT the solution. Get your cooling system in good operating order (that means stock good operating order) and it will perform as it should.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dave Wells, Hamilton Ontario on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 02:23 pm:

A good radiator is the answer. Save the waterpump for use as a wheel chock. I removed my waterpump and even with a tired old rad, all the problems went away.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ken Parker on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 02:27 pm:

Wes,

Just as Seth and Henry have said. Stock good operating order is all that is required.

We have been talking this one over lately. If your car will do what this one did yesterday:

1. you don't need a water pump because this car none, and

2. you have a good radiator and you don't need that either.




Dan, I like your temp setup and have to have one. Also, ,may I use your "Overheating Causes"?



The little chart above was run on car #312498 at a standstill idle for one hour.



Good radiator with timing and fuel mixture set correctly is all that is required. I suggest a flat tube.

Ken in Texas


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gene Carrothers Huntington Beach on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 02:51 pm:

Interesting Ken,

You didn't give the ambient temp or have any load on the engine like a steep hill at slow speed.
It does show the importance of proper mixture and timing.

They're are a lot of waterpumps hanging on the garage walls including one on mine after replacing the radiator.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jerry VanOoteghem - SE Michigan on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 03:34 pm:

Yes he did. Ambient temp 70 F.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Warren Henderson, Dunbarton, NH on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 04:15 pm:

Wes, I never have had a water pump on my '17 and use it in the New Boston 4th of July parade every year (most years it's ninety degrees in the shade) and have never had a problem.

Happy motoring,

Warren



New Boston 4th of July parade


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ken Parker on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 05:43 pm:

Gene,

Ambient was 70 degrees yesterday morning when I did the table. First line under the date.

Show us what you get on yours.

That car will pull a hard low peddle grade and run 38-40 mph for extended periods on tour. That's why I did the table with it.

Ken in Texas


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Val Soupios on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 07:10 pm:

Drove today in Florida, ambient temperature was 80, and the radiator is 101 years old. No overheating even sitting at a draw bridge over the intercostal for 8 minutes. I was the only thing that got hot sitting that long in the sun!
When I got the car it had a water pump that leaked like a sieve. After several attempts to stop the leak I took it off and tossed it in the scrap pile. The only question I have is why someone put a water pump on the car in the first place.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Gregush Portland Oregon on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 07:30 pm:

I run an Atlas on mine. It's going to stay esp after I do the Chevrolet head conversion. (Poor mans Frontenac) :-) Some pumps are better then others when it comes to actually circulating the water. It's your car and if the pump works for you go for it. :-)
Even if it does drip a little water what the heck, drips a little oil, drips a little grease, drips a little gas so why not drip a little water too! (Truth is I have very little dripping from the Atlas)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bud Holzschuh - Panama City, FL on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 08:41 pm:

Wes

The original radiator on my T had loose fins. I tried a water pump and it didn't make a bit of difference. Only a new rad made a difference.

If your car isn't overheating now, I would definitely try it without the pump, you may find it makes no difference. ;o)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charlie B actually in Toms River N.J. on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 10:03 pm:

I guess if it's shot the easiest/cheapest thing to do is to run without it and see what happens. I agree with the guys that say if it over heats then a good cleaning and possibly a new rad is in order. I had a 23' Touring that had a pump installed by the former owner who claimed it cured his over heating in parades problem. I never removed the pump but I did have the rad out once and it looked excellent inside and out so I question his slow driving abilities as opposed to the pump doing much.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gene Carrothers Huntington Beach on Monday, March 30, 2015 - 10:10 pm:

Sorry i didn't see the amb temp.
I replaced my round tube with loose fins years ago with a new flat tube from Brassworks. Now it runs very cool even in + 100* temps. I tried a thermostat thinking it might give better running temps but have since removed it. Here on SoCal freeways at nearly wide open throttle the Motometer barely reaches the center to where I can see it keeping up with truck traffic and passing some. It's a happy running T and no pumps.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hal Davis-SE Georgia on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 07:39 am:

Perhaps repro motometers are better than they used to be. I started out in the old car hobby about 15 years ago with a Model A. I bought a repro motometer and I was disappointed in the operation of it. It NEVER reaches the circle, and if it did, there would be a BIG problem. Basically, if I see ANY red, it is on the hot side and I usually notice ragged running first then confirm the problem by checking the motometer, which will show maybe 1/4" of red. It will go higher after a shutdown after a hard run, but will go right back down as soon as the car gets moving again. I asked about it on a Model A forum I frequented at the time and was told that was normal, the repro motometers were notoriously inaccurate, and to just use it as a hood ornament. Perhaps they are better nowadays? I don't know, but I have to admit, when I see someone ask about a temperature problem based on motometer readings, I wonder if they really have a problem or just an inaccurate motometer.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charlie B actually in Toms River N.J. on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 09:21 am:

My impression was that a motometer's sensor should be immersed in the coolant. Not possible on a T without some sort of "sensor extension". If that's true wouldn't that make them inaccurate as hell and exactly describe the problem Hal posted?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Fred Dimock, Newfields NH, USA on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 09:26 am:

I have a water pump!

It is near the bottom of a big tube in my front yard.
Among other things, it supplies water for the radiator of my 1919 T .


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 09:34 am:

Charlie and Hal - maybe the old ones were bad, I don't know. I have one that I bought about two years ago and I think it's pretty spot on. My engine runs relatively cool with the flat tube rad.

In the winter I can usually see about a 1/4" of red. But I can make the meter go up by retarding the spark, and watch it go back down by advancing it. It runs higher or lower depending on the temperature that day. I runs more like halfway between the bottom and the center line during the summer. I did find that at a car show in July on top of an aircraft tarmac the red stayed around the middle of the smaller circle (basically 3/4 of the way up the whole motometer). But it never got higher than that. With the heat and humidity I can't really imagine running my speedster in a worse environment, and the flat tube kept it plenty cool.

I don't think you really need the sensor down in the coolant. Whenever I take my rad cap off it's covered in water where the steam has been collecting on it. I don't know that you could put degree marks on the meter but I use it as more of an idiot light. If it spikes fast I have a problem.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kenneth W DeLong on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 10:01 am:

What i find funny is that many of the anti water pump crowd say no pump is or was ever needed and thermo siphon works perfectly now as then. Why would people usually advocate a new flat tube now when since 1909 there never was a problem?? Bud in Wheeler,Mi.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Richard Gould, Folsom, CA on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 10:23 am:

You should have been a lawyer, Bud! ;^)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 10:43 am:

I agree you have a point Bud. Question - if the gas used to be a lot thicker and heavier, more like kerosene now, would that be similar to running more rich now? My point being that maybe on the fuel they had back then the engines ran a touch cooler. Which means they ran fine on a new round tube radiator. Our really nice, ultra refined gas probably burns hotter and thus necessitates a flat tube rad over the round tube. I have no idea for sure but just wondering.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Henry Petrino in Modesto, CA on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 11:08 am:

Interesting train of thought Seth. You could add to that mix the idea that in the day it's probable that plain water was all that was used and today many of us use a mix of water and coolant/antifreeze which has different heat transfer properties than the plain water.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ken Parker on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 11:17 am:

Gene,

Not a problem at all.

I was trying to get someone with a questionable radiator to repeat what I did in the table in their driveway and see what they get.

I am assuming a questionable/poor radiator will not be able to run that long, 45 minutes, without boiling. However, I could be incorrect.

Half the variables are removed by a static test. Speed/airflow, load, and grade are gone.

The variables remaining are ambient temperature, spark, fuel mixture, throttle, and hood. All but ambient can easily be changed to find the best combination while the car is parked.

I replaced a round tube radiator with a flat tube one from Brassworks and it will not boil running in 90-100 degree temperatures.

Ken in Texas


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dave Wells, Hamilton Ontario on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 11:19 am:

I bet a lot of folks just learning about cars ran them with low water, mud and dust on the round tube rads, spark set wrong and there were the rough roads of course. Fifteen million cars meant thousands of boiled over rads at least. The waterpump salesmen would have pursued the massive Ford market like no other with their "answer to the problem". Today, a thermosyphon system with a flat tube rad is way more correct than a waterpump and works better too.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 11:30 am:

Henry I did notice a massive difference in the temperature my T ran just recently. I had asked my dad to top off my radiator and he did, with just antifreeze. I had meant to tell him only put water as I was probably above 50% antifreeze anyway. In the end I was probably running somewhere around 30% water and 70% antifreeze. I noticed my T ran pretty warm (especially compared to what I was used to seeing on the motometer). I drained it all out and went back with 70% water and 30% antifreeze and immediately the T ran significantly cooler.

I suspect if you run straight water with perhaps a touch of soluble oil in a fresh round tube with a slightly rich mixture, you'd have zero problems with overheating.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kenneth W DeLong on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 11:58 am:

Well,I'm still wondering why,but if the model T was and still is perfect why would Henry put a pump on the Model A?? The radiator on the later T's are larger and the Model A larger yet so why a pump?? Bud in Wheeler,Mi.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 12:11 pm:

I won't trouble my pretty little head any more over why I get along OK without a water pump. As long as I do, I'll just enjoy it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hal Davis-SE Georgia on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 12:26 pm:

I have read that the size of the radiator has to go up exponentially with the HP of the engine it is trying to cool. Perhaps a T is about at the upper limit of reasonably sized radiators. I'm not sure what the actual exponent is, but say it was 2. You double the HP (i.e. Model A) and the radiator may have to be 4 times as large. Not saying the number IS 2, but you get what I'm saying.

The fact of the matter is, a T can and will cool just fine, even in hot climates, with a good radiator and no water pump. If you want a water pump. Go ahead and use one. No one is saying you can't. I'd just appreciate it if those of you who prefer to use a water pump, rather than buy a good radiator, don't say it's because something is wrong with the design of the T. If some newbie were to read some of the stuff on this forum and didn't know any better they'd swear the Model T was a POS that had better not be drive more than two blocks from the house on perfectly level ground unless they have Halogen headlights, LED tail lights, 100 amp alternators, 20 GPM water pumps, 12v fuel pumps, and hydraulic disc brakes and a distributor.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John Semprez-Templeton, CA on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 01:58 pm:

Bud, I recently reread Roger Burlingame's biography of Ford which sheds some light on this question. First, automotive convention in 1928 had advanced well past the horseless carriage convention of the Model T era, and Ford was finally motivated (by his competition) to pen his next 20 year automobile design. Burlingame points to Ford's "clean sheet" redesign (the Model A) as proof. Ford was finally beginning to see the light...the car buying public's attitude was changing where the meaning of reliability, comfort and style meant something beyond what T could deliver, perceived or otherwise. People now "needed" four wheel brakes, a conventional ignition system, better handling, cool running engines and all steel bodies, finished in "modern" colors. Henry Ford was reluctantly forced to deal with T's shortcomings in this "new paradigm" but finally realized he had an automobile company to save.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kenneth W DeLong on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 03:25 pm:

After several years trying i can run without a pump on our 14 after the use of a Anderson timer.Myself,i would much rather run no pump and i'm not saying others should or should not.What i will say is i think sometimes T's had heating trouble when new!! Until 1994 when i bought my first T most of my Model T learning was finding used parts on 2 DeLong farms and asking my father 1906-1966 about them!! I will agree Steve Jeff has a pretty little head!! Bud in Wheeler,Mi.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Harold Schwendeman - Sumner,WA on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 06:59 pm:

I often wished I had a shorter last name, because my name is almost always misspelled. But Steve Jelf has a name with only four letters in it and it still gets misspelled! Quite often in fact,.....ha,ha,....harold


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gene Carrothers Huntington Beach on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 07:26 pm:

So with no Pump I wonder how many guys run without a fan? I have mine still on but it is only for there for looks and no pump. Mine has to look correct for me so I leave it on.

I know RDR never used a fan with his Fronty Brass PCup but did run a pump with thermostat.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Peter Claverie on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 07:37 pm:

If you remove the pump, which clearly the majority recommend, don't forget to check whether there is a thermostat in the upper outlet, and remove it too.

As I understand it, when water pumps became the "in" Band-Aid for a marginal radiator or a dirty block, or both, the pump slowed the warming-up process enough that folks installed a thermostat in the upper outlet.

With thermo-barf, it is not only not needed, but is an impediment to proper operation.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hal Davis-SE Georgia on Wednesday, April 01, 2015 - 07:30 am:

I'm sure some new T's overheated under certain conditions. Indeed Ford increased the capacity over the years in what one would assume was an effort to correct that. I believe most of those conditions were driver induced, though, hence the troubleshooting chart Ken posted above. However, I do not believe that all new Model T's were plagued by incessant overheating until some enterprising soul decide to sell aftermarket water pumps. I just do not believe they would have sold 15 million of them if the whole world knew, or even just believed, that Model T's were notorious for running hot and you have to add a water pump from day one or you'd be sitting on the side of the road cooling down.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Royce in Georgetown TX on Wednesday, April 01, 2015 - 07:37 am:

I've removed a leaking and / or seized water pump from almost every T I have owned. In each case the removal of the water pump fixed the leak and the car either ran cooler or the same.

You don't see many people using water pumps here in Texas. It's too hot most of the time to work on cars on the side of the road!


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